On January 27, 2011 Eric Merkley was diagnosed with osteosarcoma. An aggressive cancer that we hope and the doctors to this point seem confident that is contained to one spot on his leg. Prognosis is good. Treatments and recovery will be long and painful.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Loss of an Angel

I can't even begin to express the heartache that I am feeling right now with the news of the loss of a champion.

Jake Griggs passed away last night after his brave battle against Osteosarcoma.

 Eric and I had the opportunity to meet Jake and his mom Leisa after learning that Jake was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma.  Jake was a quiet guy, but you could tell that he had a very special spirit about him.  Like all kids who have the terrifying ordeal to face cancer, you take one day at a time.  Jake had many odds against him from the beginning, but was a fighter.

 I received the call from Leisa tonight and I knew from the beginning that it was not good.  Any parent can tell you that their greatest fear is to lose a child and any parent would take their childs  place to protect them and shield them from any pain.  Instead as a parent with a child diagnosed with cancer your role is to stand by your child, pray for your child and do everything in your power to make sure that your child has a fighting chance. 

It is the most terrifying thing to face, but having the chance to raise these special gifts from Heavenly Father is so rewarding.  I know the Griggs family has cherished the time they spent with Jake and the lessons they learned from his short time here on earth and will never forget the pure love they felt as they said goodbye
It is hard to understand why the ones we love so much and bring into this world that we have to say goodbye for now.  My heart breaks for the pain of the Griggs family.  Please pray for them.

Beware of the dog

Believe it or not this actually worked when we got to the house the owner were so shocked and they told us to be careful with their CRAZY dog. I told them that god is looking out for us and that he wants them to learn more about Jesus Christ,  they still declined

I look forward to Monday's where I can hear all the things going on with Eric.... I am such a mom!  I bet this week will have a lot of fun stories.  He was going to translate for Elder Oaks yesterday.  I will keep you updated on how it went.

Monday, March 11, 2013


This week was such a good week in the area we had we meet all of our goals that we set out to reach and we were able to baptize Mia. We invited her father who was not too excited of the idea to the baptism but he came, he left saying that it was a good experience and that he was really happy for Mia. The baptism was really powerful for the mother, Sheng. Most important it was a covenant made between a 9 year old girl and her Heavenly Father, with the gift of her best friend the Holy Ghost. It was a really special experience for all who were at the baptism and I am so grateful to be a part of it.

It looks like Eric's companion "tolerates" Eric's strangeness.  :)
In his letter last week, I laughed, because I can hear Eric's voice as he was telling this story!

While I was doing my language study, I was in the kitchen table when I hear a knock on the door.  I went to open the door to a “J-Dub” missionary who was out doing his required proselyting time.  The first thing he said was “Oh Mormons”.  (I was in my white shirt, tie and full uniform).  It was funny because the first thing that I said in my head was “Oh J-Dub” as we had our silent standoff, I could hear the western music in the back of my head.  He pulled out a card, but I countered with a pamphlet… BOOM!  I Win!  I told him I would take his if he took mine.  He said okay and departed in his shame.  J I am not going to open the door anymore because it just leads to a weird thing like CPS, a news team and now “J-Dub”.  What could be next?

Oh man I miss this kid.  He keeps me laughing even when he is 10 hours and 25 minutes away!

Monday, March 4, 2013

Very Determined

Pictures tell a thousand words.

In my letter I received on Saturday, Eric told a story that went like this:
The first transfer with Mienh is now under my belt, I felt okay where I am at(he had a goal to be able to speak and understand at least 50% of Mienh before his first transfer).  I was out on an Exchange with an English Elder and we came across a Mienh home and I thought “what the heck I will try it out.”  A man answered the door and I started to speak broken Mienh to him.  He stopped me and laughed.  He mocked me and told me that I will never learn Mienh.

Me being the person I am wrote down his address and now his address is up on the wall, right next to my desk where I can see it every day.   One day he will understand the power of God.  I am really looking forward to that day.
Eric is doing well.  He studies Laotian and Mienh for about 5 hours a day, which gives me a headache just to think about it.  He loves the people and loves the work.  He has already said that he is going to extend his mission.  After we were able to speak to him on Christmas, Todd said that the big challenge will be to get Eric home at the end of 2 years.  Eric is already hinting that will be the case.  I WILL drag him home if needed.