Tuesday, January 20, 2015

January 13, 2015

     Well as expected Jesse and Naomi dominated Settlers of Catan. Over the weekend I was waiting to hear from my internship to know when they would like me to work, and they did not get to communicate with me until late the next week. My little brother's birthday was on Monday after New Years, and there was a momentum in my life to share a lot of time with him, since that birthday. I have been corresponding with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for more than a year about an internship with the building information modeling department of the church, which I had a continue because the industry is so slow that opportunities to learn management skills are going to be limited at RJ Enterprises. Over the next weekend, I caught up with, an old friend, Joanna Salas. We went out for lunch; had a wonton soup lunch with her and her mother; and watched the CES fireside, had our traditional dinner, and FHE on Sunday. That Sunday was special because a long lost friend came home. We got to catch up on Tuesday. I visited Jessica on Thursday and Friday. I am now in Utah, and I arrived yesterday, waiting to see if the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints would like me as an intern in their building information modeling department. 
     Jesse dominated the first game, and Naomi dominated the second game. I was in the position to settle where Naomi did, but I regretfully settled a fruitless port. It's an interesting game. On the last time I played with my family, I was so focused on a long term investment. I didn't consider that I could have won the turn before my father did. Again, I was investing in a port. Settlers of Catan is pretty fun. 
     After this weekend, Trevor became more of my focus on my stay at home, since Trevor turned 23 years old. We didn't have much of a birthday party. I hung out with him on his birthday at the mall, and bought him a big box full of Pokemon cards because he wanted to make a hardcore fairy deck with Dancie.  He has a lot of them now. He bought two more of the big boxes after I had. Over the next couple days, I built my own deck with his cards, and I beat him once. I like the Pokemon card game a lot more than Yugioh. It's a lot less liberal on styles to play. We celebrated Trevor's birthday as a family on Tuesday at a Chinese restaurant. It was average. I can't find the name of it on the internet. It's somewhat new. I hung out with Trevor a lot for the remainder of my stay at home. 
     I was also able to hang out with Joanna Salas. She just got back from her mission a few months ago. I wanted to catch up and check if she is fine, since she returned from her mission. Our friendship didn't lose a step over the last 20 months, since I did not see her. She is happy because her mother is now open to investigate the Gospel. Since she lives in Santa Cruz, I was able to take some pictures for Jessica to show her the city. I showed her a little of Soquel, Capitola, and Aptos before then. We hung out on Wednesday, and on Tuesday she hosted the missionaries for dinner. She planned to make Wonton Soup, and my family helped provide the ingredients a little. She said that it didn't come out as imagined on the next day when we hung out. The wontons exploded and some had a very intense garlic taste. My mother offered to host Joanna for lunch on Saturday to make Wonton soup again. That day was nice because Joanna's mother, Patty, came. We worked well together, and we had plenty wontons to go around. Joanna used to come for Family Home Evening on Sunday a lot, and dad knew that she always enjoyed it. I invited her over upon my father's request. 
     The CES fireside was the same day, and I was planning to watch it with Jessica. I didn't how it would work out, since Joanna was watching it with us. Trevor and Mom watched too. Jessica and I wanted to practice note taking, since she doesn't have much skills in it. It was really cool because I showed my example of note taking on a Google Document live, and she added her insights too. She of course was in Oregon. Our FHE was as great as usual. 
     That Sunday was special because a long lost friend popped up on Facebook. His name is Josh Van Ness. We were best friends in elementary school. I am not too sure what happened in middle school. I thought that he moved away like 15 years ago, but he lived in my hometown until after his junior year of high school, which is about 9 years ago. I hailed him up, and we went out to lunch to catch up. His life is a little rough. He already broke his back at a work site. Since he can't run, he has taken up cycling. He was baptized in the church, but no testimony remains in him. He never was active. I wish that I were home, and we can hang out. We catch up, and we didn't miss a step from our best friendship like Joanna. Cody Wentworth asked about him because he cares for him, since Josh posted on Facebook that we were hanging out. I don't think that his life will be changing much from our reunion, and I didn't expect it to. I wish that he will live up to his baptism covenant because the blessings of the Gospel are as true as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is the only true and living church, for it is led by God himself. Josh and I were hoping to hang out once more before I left to see Jessica in Oregon, but he didn't follow through. 
     I left to Oregon Thursday morning. Jessica and I just relaxed somewhat on the first day together. I also wanted to develop a good relationship with each member of her family. I spoke to a very outgoing guy on the plane, who worked in the concrete business, so some of the first things that I noticed as a Design and Construction Management student is that the moisture of the climate probably helps the concrete not crack. I saw cracks in the sidewalk only on the dry section of the sidewalk near the building. I also enjoyed the thriving vines growing on the parking structure of the airport. Jessica came with her father to pick me up from the airport in Portland. It was a good thing that they came late because I forgot my tablet on the plane, and I was able to retrieve it without too much trouble. My introduction to John, Jessica's father, was good. I wouldn't ask questions to a specific person to see their unity. The father was somewhat more bold in nature compared to Jessica, so he spoke more, which I was didn't mind because I wanted an open good relationship with him. The conversations among us were open and pure without contention for the most part. I have one little experience that I will explain. The father seems to respect Jessica and I's relationship. He asked me how important Jessica's education was to me, expressing that Jessica worked hard to get to BYU Idaho. I think that she may have already graduated from Institute, and she worked shifts, starting at 5 o' clock in the morning. 
     Jasmine, Jessica's sister, are each other's best friend, so I didn't want to take anything way from that. The first thing that we did is practice cycling because Jessica never learned how to bicycle. She somewhat learned how to ride straight, but she didn't learn cycling all at once like when I taught Ranadi Koroitamana. We rested a little, reading Book of Jer3miah: Premonition and Skyped my little brother, introducing Jasmine to him; but it was hard for Trevor to hear us. After that, Jasmine, Jessica, and I went on a jog. We got home in a reasonable amount of time before dinner. We bought Chinese food at a grocery store, and enjoyed that. 
      After dinner we played some board games. They were Chinese checkers, which Jessica mentioned she played a lot before; mancala; and checkers. Jasmine almost cowarded away from playing Chinese checkers because she claimed that she is no good. Jessica was practicing strategies that I have never seen before, so I  sent some of my guys over to slow her down. Jessica was clearly better than Jasmine and I, for she nearly won way before us despite my effort to slow her down. I had another trick though because my goal was not to win, since Jasmine's confidence in games was little. I put one of my guys in Jessica's territory to stop her from winning, and Jasmine and I raced to fill our territory of our goal. Jasmine won for the first time ever. I wanted to build Jasmine up as much as I can when I was there, so after I won a game of mancala. Jessica and I cheered Jasmine on on a game of checkers. She totally lost her first game against her father, but somehow she was bombarding him in the second game. She almost made a bunch of grave mistakes, but we coached her through. Jasmine didn't lose one guy in the second game, winning a checkers game against her father for the first time. The father said that she didn't need my help after a while, but it seemed that I awaken Jasmine to greater thought processes in the game than I imagined. The next move that she took after I quit coaching her showed her exceptional boldness, for it was risky yet flawless, continually pushing her bombardment deeper into enemy territory, and they couldn't do anything about it. Jasmine's win was all her. I didn't lead the bombardment. I mainly coached her in saving her guys. I didn't see the conclusion of the game because I had to go sleep at a relative's house, but the father said that they didn't finish the game because he didn't have a chance. 
     The next day we went to Multnomah Falls. Jessica's mother, Mercedes came home late from work last night, but she joined the four of us on our hike. By the way, when the mother came home, the family opened up and enjoyed the gifts that my parents gave them. My father baked oatmeal raisin cookies, and my mother gave them a table cloth. The Ledesma family ate so many of the cookies that They could keep up with the cookie monster from Sesame Street. The mother prepared and filled an entire cooler with food for the trip, and she distributed it individually, when we arrived. The hike up to the top of the falls was only a mile, but it was basically straight up hill. The time together was good, for the time together was balanced with private and family time. I was able to talk with Jessica about her effort to get an education that her father pointed out, and that I will support her in her educational decisions. We took many pictures, and I will post them. A snack that has become a favorite of the Ledesma family is what I gave Jessica on our first time running together at BYU Idaho. It is seaweed, and the father asked who's idea was it to bring it to the hiking trip. No one wanted to claim it because it was all of ours except perhaps Jasmine's and the father's. 
     When we were coming home, we decided to go watch a movie at the theaters because the Ledesma family has a good tradition of watching good contemporary films. We watched the 'Imitation Game.' It was a very good film, but of course it had to have gay propaganda in it. I didn't let it bother me. The story was very interesting. After the film, Jasmine was surprised that I asked her what she thought about the film, and she spoke about the gay issue. We spoke about it all the way home, but when Jasmine asked what I thought about the film. I said that the history impressed me. I never heard of the enimga, and cracking it's cryptography each day by a first computer each day, and using statistical analysis of stopping the attacks, which would not alarm Hitler, paved the way to ending World War two. 
     Here is the story of contention that I have to tell you about. I apologized to Jessica in my last letter for it; although, she gratefully always overlooks these things. 
"One thing that I learned about equality from visiting you is that yielding to each other's requests cultivates trust and respect. People usually only ask small things from each other. For example, you asked Jasmine to call your mother to double check if she will not be attending dinner. I agreed with Jasmine, assuming that she was not going to come, since she only set up four dishes. I learned that you prefer communication over assumption, which I sustain. I felt bad for creating a contentious situation, when you asked her "Why don't you call her?" I egged on her opposition to your request, saying "Tell her why you don't want to call her." I was surprised that her reply was a lie, saying that her phone was charging, when she had it. I was grateful that your dad came in, showing us the cryptographs to change the situation. As you can see, I am very sensitive and observant. I apologize for making a contentious situation. I will try my best to never support contention, division, and pride again. If one does what another asks, there is appreciation cultivated; therefore, the other will most likely do want the one requests, creating a fruitful, productive, and humble relationship. One has to keep humble though not to dominate another's life. In familial situations, one should hearken to each other's requests to fauster unity and humility, for no one should dominate the family life, if everyone would hearken to each other."
     My flight to Utah left Saturday at 9 in the morning. Jessica wished that I could leave in the afternoon, but the solumn morning was perfect for an intimate moment where she rested her head on my shoulder on the drive to the airport. The feel that this gesture shows great love. I told Jessica that a bishop admired me for always laying my head on my father's shoulder during sacrament, and John the Beloved is another example of this ultimate display of love at the last supper. 
     Life is slow at Utah somewhat. I like the freedom to do my will, for I can write in my journal and other things without the distractions of my immediate family. I worked on a scholarship application yesterday, and I have been developing fruitful good friendships at a gold mine that I found of Twitter for YSA bloggers. One sister is not a member, but I have developed a close relationship with her. I want her to witness and understand the love of God and the saints more from the Mormon YSA Blog Spot. She commented on an article that I shared, and I can instantly tell a open humility to God. I just want to serve her, for she loves to write as does all of the other bloggers of the Mormon YSA Blog Spot. I invited her to write for the blog spot, being the first nonmember that I ever invited to write with us. She wants to be a successful writer, and I thought that a writer's support group would be great for the Mormon YSA Blog Spot. This is where everyone in the blog spot can share there love to one another, seeking to improve the composition skills of all the participants therein. It basically depends on her because her passion and enthusiasm is key for the writer's support group to set the example of vision and participation for the forum. 
     Other than working on a scholarship application yesterday, I prepared for my interview for today with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Building Information Modeling department. I had the interview this morning at 9, and I was described as well qualified; however, I felt rusty talking about the program of REVIT. I got the news this afternoon via email that I was not chosen for the internship position due to lack of experience. 

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