Search This Blog

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Our Real Life, True Love Story

Compiled by Chad and Mindy Sanders on March 5th and 6th of 2014 from their journal entries.  Italic asides added on March 5-6, 2014

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
September 18, 2000

What a wonderful weekend I had!  On Thursday night I went over to Scott South’s and Aaron Collins’ apartment to watch a movie.  Aaron Collins grew up in Queen Creek with my friend Chad Sanders, who I liked when I went to EA, but have not seen since he went on his mission.  I have wanted to see Chad and go out with him for a long time, but our paths had not crossed, that is they hadn’t until Thursday night.  While we were visiting at Aaron’s apartment his cell phone rang and Aaron said, “Hi Chad!” and looked at me, because I have talked to him about Chad a little bit.  I got really excited, and then before I knew it I agreed to go out with Chad on Friday night.  Friday I had to go to Snowflake to get some shots, but since I had the opportunity to go out with Chad I made my trip to Snowflake very short. [The shots were vaccinations for my mission, (I got a mission call to Argentina in August of 2000 and was supposed to report to the MTC on Nov. 15, 2000) why I didn’t change to a Dr. in Mesa is still puzzling to me. - Mindy]   In fact I only stayed in Snowflake for about 2 ½ hours, before I drove back to Mesa.  Chad and I went hiking with a group of his friends up the Superstition Mountains we did not hike very far because it was dark.  Then after that we went back to Chad’s friend’s house and played pool and visited.  He didn’t hug me after our date, but he told me that he would see me the next day at our institute opening social.

I had a really fun time talking with Chad and getting reacquainted.  He is a really great guy.  He was in my FHE group at EA.  He also played on EA’s basketball team.  He is smart and comes from a good family and is fun to be around.  However, we have never had a romantic relationship, it has always been, just friends.  We have flirted, but nothing more than that.  I don’t know if he would ever want to be more than friends.  However I think he is a great guy and I would like to see if we could be more than friends.  But since I am going on a mission, and he knows I am going on a mission I don’t know what will happen.  I have decided to let him make the moves.  If Heavenly Father wants something to happen between us, instead of me going on a mission then that is fine.  But I am going to let Chad make the moves if he wants to, because I feel like that is what I should do. 

Saturday morning I went to the Temple, I had a good time.  I ended up in the same session that Snowflake 1st Ward was in.  It was fun to be with a lot of people from my hometown.  Then I went to Barrie Bolen’s bridal shower.  I also went shopping with Chani and I took Shelby out to dinner for winning my mission guessing game.  Saturday night I went to the institute opening social, by myself because all my friends were meeting there later.  So I visited with a bunch of people as I walked around looking for my roommates and for Chad.  I saw Chad and we started talking and we ended up hanging out together for the rest of the evening.  Yesterday afternoon he called me and asked where to meet to come and play basketball with my friends and me after FHE.  I am excited to hang out with him again tonight.

Chad really made my weekend fun.  I always have fun when I hang out with a guy that I am interested in.  I hope that whatever happens Chad and I can stay friends, and maybe see if we could become more than friends at some point in time.  Well I guess that is all I have to write for now.  I love the gospel.  I know the church is true. 

Mindy Flake

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------A letter Chad sent to his sister Jennie who was away at college.
A day or so before September 24, 2000


I wanted to ask you about all my mission letters that I had in a big orange care package envelope in my big suitcase.  Not the hard case one, the one that is old and flimsy.  It had a pocket inside and that is where the envelope was.  Do you know where it is now?

Well, I guess I’ll bring you up to speed with my love life.  About a week ago, Aaron was planning a date for Friday night.  I hadn’t been on a date for a while so I figured I had better go.  The problem was that I didn’t have anyone to go with.  I hadn’t met any girls I wanted to take and the girls I wanted to take, I hadn’t met.  So Thursday came around and Aaron said if I couldn’t find one he could set me up again.  I didn’t want him to have to keep doing that.  So I was in institute Thursday morning and I sat next to this pretty girl.  We talked a little and I decided to ask her out even though we had just barely met officially then.  She said she would like to go but that she had to work.  Then she said that she would try to get work off to go and gave me her number so I felt better.  That night I called her and she said that she couldn’t get off.  So I called Aaron and said I wanted to go but I couldn’t get a date so he (while on the phone) was looking at Mindy Flake for some reason and remembered that I knew her.  So he asked if I would like to go with her.  That moment was the first time I had remembered her since my mission when she wrote me a couple of times (that’s why I want my letters).  Anyway, I remembered that she had taken me to EAC’s winter formal and that she was a really good girl.  So I got excited and hoped that she was still the same.  So I picked her up and she was more pretty than I had remembered and was really cool and easy to talk to.  After a while I was asking about her future plans and she said she was going on a mission.  My heart stopped, and I wanted to scream NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!  Anyway the date was fun and we were both going to the MCC opening social the next night so we decided to meet each other there.  We did and had a good time.  Then she invited me to her wards family home evening for this last Monday.  I went and had a good time.  Each time that I see her I find out more pleasing things about her that I want in a wife.  The only thing is she is going on a mission.  I prayed and felt like I need to pursue it more and see what happens.  I asked all my friends (Levi, Micah, etc.) and they all told me to make her stay home from a mission.  That would be a bad thing if she was a boy and I was the girl but for girls’ missions it is different.  They have different priorities.  Remember I was worried what to do if I ever wanted to take a girl out more than once?  Well that is not a problem anymore.  I moved up to harder problems like does she like me enough to want to get to know me better and would she stay home if she felt like I was the one?  Well to make a long story short, never mind, it is already a long story.  Anyway I asked her out again for tonight (Friday) and I have decided that I have to tell her something about how I feel or else we will just go on both being confused.  If she says that she likes me too, great.  If she says that she just wants to focus on her mission, well then it will have been for my experience and shall have been for my good. (D&C 122:7)  Well, have a good day Jennie.  (I sure hope I do)


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Another letter Chad sent to his sister Jennie.
Sunday September 24, 2000


Well, I was so tired from all the excitement that I was sleeping all afternoon and couldn’t call you back so I will just give you the details.

We had a good date last night but I still hadn’t said anything to her about us and it was at the end of the night.  It was 12:00 and I was just going to say something to her on the way back to her apartment but there was one small problem.  DJ’s date was Mindy’s sister.  They are roommates so I had told DJ that I might not go straight up to the apartment with them two.  We got out of the car and we all started walking toward the apartment and I almost chickened out saying “Oh, I’ll tell her some other time on a different date.”  Then I decided to be a man and I took her arm and said, “Let’s go this way.”  I couldn’t talk.  I was shaking so bad and somehow I got some words out like that I was confused and really liked her but that she had this mission thing and I just asked if I had a chance with her.  She said “Oh yah, you definitely have a chance.”  Then I wasn’t shaking quite as bad but those first 30 seconds were the hardest thing I have ever done in my life and that is no joke.  Even the first door approach in Chile my first day of my mission not knowing the language was much easier than this.  But I am glad I did it.  As we walked I didn’t know how much she wanted to talk or if she was tired or what so I would round a corner and start to turn back toward her apartment but she would turn the opposite way to walk even further.  We must have talked for at least an hour outside and then more inside.  Anyway, she told me she knew what her priorities were and what the prophet had said that her priorities should be so that was awesome.  She said she had decided to go on a mission because she was 21 and wasn’t dating anyone and had nothing better to do but was definitely not closed to that.  That made me feel a lot better.  I told her that I wished I had seen her before in these 4 months that I have been home and that I was upset that Aaron never said anything even though he knew we knew each other.  Then she said, “Want to hear my side of the story?”  She said that she had been trying really hard to make our paths meet these last four months through Jason Brimhall, the guy I played basketball with at EAC, through Aaron, and others but nothing worked out.  She was going to come to my homecoming but couldn’t make it.  [I had to speak in church that day. –Mindy]  That made me feel even better to know she felt the same way.  She didn’t want me to know that she was going on a mission and tried to keep it a secret but on our first date last Friday I asked some good follow up questions about her future plans and she told me.  She was afraid I wouldn’t ask her out again.  I could kinda tell that is what she was doing.  So we made it back to the apartment and talked for another half hour or so and then we realized DJ wasn’t waiting in the car.  He was in the house so that was cool.  We went in and talked some more and then we left.  I was on such a high and in shock that I had brought myself to do something like that.  I was glad I didn’t put it off.  Whoever said nothing good ever happens after midnight?  Oh, before we went in the house I asked, “So what do we do now?”  She said she was going rollerblading today and that I should come and go with her.  She also said that since we got a big bag of pancake mix from the Bigger/Better game that we should have breakfast together.  So I went back at about 10:00 this morning and we had breakfast and we went rollerblading at the new park at ASU.  I thought others were going to come but it was just us two so we talked about what had happened the night before.  I told her how hard it was for me to do that and she said she was glad I did and I said I was too.  We went back to her house and I stayed and listened to her and her sister Amy practice the violin and viola piece they are playing tomorrow in church.  Then they had some stuff to do before women’s conference so Mindy led me to the door and went outside with me.  We said thanks and goodbye and I went to shake her hand like an idiot missionary and she grabbed my hand pulled me in and we hugged.  I feel so awkward sometimes being with a girl.  I have got to get over it or she will think I am a dud.  I don’t know when that kissing thing will come up but I am guessing it is not very far away.  I thought I did the hard part last night by breaking the ice but I think it is just the beginning of new things I have to do.  I was just going to wait till Monday to see her again but I think I am going to have to go to her church tomorrow and maybe even invite her to come to dinner with the family.  Tonight Jace came over after work and I gave him the story and he gave me some pointers.  Jace and Macaia’s relationship is a lot like mine so it helps.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
September 28, 2000

Things have been going well lately.  I have started dating Chad Sanders pretty seriously.  He came and played basketball with us on the 18th after FHE.  I remembered how fun it is to watch him play.  When I went to EA I used to go watch their basketball games.  He is a great player.  Then on Tuesday I woke up and chided myself for getting my hopes up, because on Monday night there were no more promises of doing anything together.  [That was such a hard day for me.  I remember sitting in institute feeling so sad.  I had finally met a really great guy and was already falling for Chad and I didn’t know if he would want to ask me out again since I had a mission call.  I still remember the feeling of despair I felt that day. -Mindy]  So all day Tuesday I reminded myself that it was ok if he didn’t call because I was going on a mission.  Then on Wed. Sept. 20th I went to the Temple with Marcy Player and Autumn McBride and we helped do sealings.  When I got home Debbie said, "Guess what!   Chad called."  I said, “Don’t tease me about that”, because she knows I like him, and she said "I am serious he is going to call you back later."  Later that night he called me and asked me out for Friday night.  He also told me he would call me on Thursday to let me know what we were doing. 

So Thursday he called me and told me that we were playing a game with a group of people called bigger or better.  What you do is you split us into couples and each of you start out with a can of soup.  Then you go to people’s houses and ask them for something bigger or better, it doesn’t have to be food, it could be something you would sell at a yard sale or something you just want to get rid of.  Thursday night I also went out with Darin Jones.  We went and walked around Tempe Town Lake.  He is such a nice guy, but not my type.  He has been a really good friend though and I enjoyed talking to him. 

On Friday, just before our date, Chad called me and asked if one of my roommates wanted to go out with his friend, because his friend’s date couldn’t get off work.  My dad was there when he called and my dad asked me, “Mindy are you still going on a mission?”  And I said, “I don’t know right now, I will have to wait and see how things go with Chad.”  And he said, “when I was Stake President I called up to Salt Lake many times and told them that girls weren’t going on a mission because they were engaged and the brethren said, well tell her good luck!”  So I told him I am going to see how things go with Chad before I make any serious decisions. 

Friday night the date was really fun.  Chad and I ended up with a huge bag of pancake mix, Aaron Collins and his date got a roping dummy, another couple got an old bed and mattress, plus many other weird things.  Then we went to the same house we went to the week before and watched a movie.  During the whole movie I wanted Chad to hold my hand, but he didn’t.  I even made it easy for him, but still he didn’t grab it!  After the date I was worried about walking to the door with my sister because it is awkward to end a date with two couples at the door, but Chad took care of that.  As we were getting out of the car Chad said, let go this way and so we went on a little walk.  During the ride home he had asked me why I moved to Mesa if I like EA so much.  So I told him about how I was dating someone seriously and that I moved to Mesa to be closer to him because we almost got married.  I told him that one good thing about having a relationship like that is, that I know what a relationship feels like when it is wrong so I don’t have to get so involved when I know it is wrong.  While we were walking he brought that up again and said, “So how do you feel about me, do I have a chance?”  I said, “You have a really good chance!”  So we continued to talk and he asked me how serious I was about going on a mission and how I felt about dating someone and whether or not I would still go if I had the chance to get married.  [He didn’t say that in those exact words but pretty much that is what he meant.]  So I told him what my dad said earlier that day about when he was Stake President, and I told him that my first priority was to get married, if it was right.  He went on to tell me that when I told him I was going on a mission he wished he could have seen me when he first got off his mission 4 months ago, and I told him that I wished I could have seen him too.  (I used to tell Chani and Sandi that I wished I could just see him and go out with him.)  He also told me that he had never even asked the same girl out twice in the same six month period before.  So he asked me, “So what do we do?”  I told him that we could hang out and date and see how things go.  So we kept walking and talking he told me that he could teach me Spanish, because he knows that I really want to learn Spanish.  It was a great talk.  We ended our walk and talked in front of my door for a while then we went in my apartment and talked to Amy and his friend David who had been waiting for us.  Chad and I decided to make a pancake breakfast, since we had all that pancake mix from our game, and go roller blading the next day.  When we said good bye he still shook my hand!  And we didn’t even hold hands while we were talking, and I made sure my hand was available.

Saturday he came over at 10:00 and we ate breakfast with Amy and Kaija.  Kaija was happy that she finally got to meet him.  Then Chad and I went roller-blading at Tempe Town Lake.  We talked a little, but things were still kind of new and awkward between us.  He told me his parents made him tell him how things went when he got in last night.  He also said that his family (he is the 2nd of 9 kids) came in during the morning and asked him how things went.  I told him my sister Penny also called me to see how things were going.  He also said that talking to me the previous night was the hardest thing he had ever had to do.  He said it was harder than anything on his mission was.  After we roller-bladed we went back to my house and Amy and I practiced our song for the Special Musical Number in Church.  We played I am a Child of God, Amy played her violin and I played my viola.  Saturday afternoon Amy, Kaija, and I went to the General Women’s Broadcast.  It was a really good broadcast.  President Hinckley talked about mothers and their responsibilities.  The General Relief Society Presidency also talked.  They did a very good job.  After the broadcast I went on a date with Lee.  Lee is John’s best friend, and John is the guy that Kaija has been dating.  I didn’t really want to go with him because I knew that I liked Chad and that Lee wasn’t my type, but I didn’t have a good excuse so I went.  Kaija and John doubled with us.  I was really tired and so was Kaija so we went out to eat then we went to John’s sister’s house and then we went home. 

Sunday morning Chad called and invited me to eat dinner after church.  He came to my ward to hear Amy and I play.  I really enjoyed meeting his family.  They are really neat.  In fact I smiled and laughed so much my face hurt.  After dinner Chad came back over to my house [Chad lived in Queen Creek and I lived in west Mesa.  He made that drive a lot to come see me. – Mindy] and we invited some people over to play games. [I remember that I was sitting on the couch and since there were a lot of people over Chad was sitting on the floor in front of me.  I remember being brave and leaning in close to him, right next to his face while we were playing games.  It was so electrifying to be that close to him, very romantic. -Mindy]  My cousin Michelle came to Mesa for a farewell that day and she stayed the night at our house.  It was fun to have her over.  Chad and I went and walked around the Temple later Sunday night.  He still didn’t hold my hand but we had a nice talk.  At the end of the day he did give me a short hug though.  Monday night he came to my FHE and then we went and played basketball.  Tuesday night we went to institute and then watched a movie over at Chani’s house with her roommates and Amy and Sandi.  During the movie I still wanted him to hold my hand, but he didn’t, although, I did lie my head on his shoulder for a little while.

Last night I went to Chad’s institute class out at Highland High School.  He waited for me and I was even late.  The class was really good.  It was about Rebekah.  Then afterwards we went bowling with Chad’s brother and sister-in-law.  After that we went to Sonic and got some flurries.  Then Chad’s brother dropped us off at the institute where our cars were.  Chad and I talked for a while.  I wanted him to hold my hand or hug me so badly while we were talking, but he didn’t.  Mainly I think he didn’t because he didn’t really know what to do.  I remember during my first relationship how shy I was.  I was extremely shy, and I didn’t really know what to do.  But the learning process sure is fun.  After we were talking for a while I knew I had to do something to get him to hold my hand.  So I started pacing the parking slot line next to my car.  Then I said, “Let’s have a chicken fight and try to push each other off the line”, because I knew that we would at least have to touch hands, and that it would make him more comfortable and less shy.  So we did that and ... one thing led to another and I ended up wrapped up in his arms and holding his hand.  It felt so good to be next to him.  I love the way he smells!  In fact out of the 3 guys I have had a serious relationship with he is the only guy whose smell I really like.  As we were hugging he said, “This is the closest I have ever been to a girl.”  I told him I didn’t mind that at all.  Then later on I asked him what he was thinking.  He said, “I was thinking about asking you a question.”  So I waited.  Then he asked if it would be all right if he could give me a good night kiss.  So I said, yes.  But he said I would have to help him because he had never kissed anyone before.  So we kissed.  One lovely kiss.  It was nice and sweet.  Then we hugged some more and decided that we had better go home. 

Chad is such a great guy.  I know he lives the gospel.  He is obedient and kind.  I can’t even picture him getting mad or losing his temper.  He is so sweet and I trust him.  I know that if we were to get married I could trust him to make the decisions that would lead us to the Celestial Kingdom.  However, I am still not sure what will happen with us.  I am faced with the decision of either going on my mission or staying home with Chad if things continue to go well.  I have been thinking and praying to Heavenly Father to have Him help me be sure what I should do.  I also had my Dad give me a blessing.  He blessed me that I would know what I should do.  He told me Heavenly Father was pleased with me, and also that he, my dad, was pleased with me.  He told me that they were both righteous decisions, but that I would know what I should do.  He said I would know by Chad’s actions.  So I am going to continue to keep dating Chad.  Even though I don’t have a lot of time I have a few weeks to make my decision, and I don’t have to make it right away.  I have been kind of worried lately because this is such a big decision to make.  I feel like I have a huge knot burning in my chest.  I felt something similar to that when I was dating other guys and it never went away.  The feeling helped me realize something was not right.  However, with Chad, so far I feel like it is a huge ball of worry and apprehension because I am making such a big decision.  I don’t feel it all the time, but it is there sometimes, not usually when I am with Chad and it was not there while he was holding me last night.  The feeling does not make me feel like Chad is wrong for me, but I am not exactly sure what it is yet.  I am going to try and relax and take my time to see what it is before I make any drastic decisions.  I know that Heavenly Father will help me make this decision.

Well, I guess that is enough of my soap opera for today.  I wanted to write it all down though because I felt it was important.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
October 13, 2000
Well I am still dating Chad.  I am enjoying getting to know him better.  He went to Snowflake with me on the weekend of Oct. 1st.  I had a nice drive with him.  [I remember holding his hand and tracing my fingers through his hand and up and down his arm as he drove us to Snowflake in my car.  I didn’t want the drive to end, and I don’t like driving long distance!  It was the shortest drive to Snowflake ever. –Mindy]   I showed him around Snowflake and up on top of Temple Hill.  There weren't a lot of things to do while we were there so I did get a little bored, and I was tired so I was a little grouchy, but Sunday was a nice day.  We went to church and then ate dinner with my family and then drove back to Mesa.
My dad got hurt while we were in Snowflake that weekend. We branded cows at 9-mile and my dad went to help ride before we branded.  As started getting off Chester, his horse, Chester got spooked and jumped and my dad fell off. My dad broke his shoulder, 3 or 4 ribs, and punctured his lung.  They airvaced him to the Show Low hospital.  He had to stay in the hospital for a few days, but he is out now.  He has even come down to Mesa this week.  He still isn't completely better, but he will be alright.
Last weekend was Conference weekend.  On Saturday Chad came over and watched conference at my house, and then on Sunday I went to his house and watched it with his family.  I really enjoyed the talks.  I took notes on most of the talks.  Not one particular talk stands out I want to go back and read them.  They will probably be posted on the Internet pretty soon.  I did enjoy Elder Dallin H. Oaks talk.  He said that Charity is a process.  I want to possess Charity, so I like talks that talk about it and explain how to get it.
I have still not decided what to do about Chad.  He is everything I want in a husband.  I think he possesses most if not all the qualities that I wrote down on the list I made of what I want my husband to have.  Sometimes I still feel unsure though and I worry.  I have not fasted yet about what I should do.  When I am with him I feel good around him and when I pray and read my scriptures I feel good and that it is right, but sometimes I get that sick feeling knotted up inside.  Sometimes I think I have a lack of faith, not a lack of faith in Chad but a lack of faith in my decision.  I keep second guessing myself.  I need to make a decision then pray about it.  Right now I am standing on middle ground; I need to make a decision.  I am going to fast about it this weekend.  I hate having to make such big decisions; they scare me.  But my dad blessed me that I would know what I should do, and I know Heavenly Father will help me make this decision.
One thing that is different about Chad than about the other guys that I have dated is that I don't worry about him at all.  I know that he will make good decisions.  That he is a faithful member of the church and that he likes me.  I even think he loves me.  He has not said that he loves me yet, but he treats me like he does.  Last Saturday while he was saying good bye, he jokingly told me he thought that I would make a terrible missionary, and that he wanted me to stay.  He is so cute.
Tonight I am going on a group date with Chad and a bunch of his friends from Gilbert are taking dates. Tomorrow morning Chad and I are going wake boarding with Kaija, John, Natalie, and Lee. It might be kind of cold, but it will still be fun.
I know the church is true!
Mindy Flake

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Letter Mindy emailed to her friend Natalie Freestone Jones
Wed, 18 Oct 2000 12:06:35 PDT


If you were still planning on coming to my farewell you can cancel your plans!  I am not going on a mission anymore, well at least not on that kind of mission.  I started dating an old friend about a month ago, he has asked me to stay home and I have prayed about it and have decided to stay.  His name is Chad Sanders.  He is from Queen Creek.  I first met him when I was at EA.  We both graduated in 97 and went to EA for our first year of college.  We were in the same FHE group, in choir together, and we played volleyball at open gym quite often.  He had not gone on his mission yet while we were at EA so we were always just friends.  He got back off his mission 5 months ago.  I didn't see him until 1 month ago though . After we saw each other we realized that we liked each other and we started dating, and now we have decided to cancel my mission plans.  We are not engaged yet but things are heading in that direction.  Chad is so awesome Natalie.  He is the best guy!  His family is so neat.  He is everything I have ever wanted.

I hope things are going well for you and Jake. I hope to hear from you soon.

Love ya,

From:  Natalie Freestone                                  Oct. 19, 2000

I totally know Chad! We grew up in the same ward together. He should probably remember who I am too. That is so cool! Thanks for letting me in on that bit of info. He is a neat guy and comes from a good family. I am glad that you were able to pray about this and feel good. I went through the same thing right before Jake and I got engaged and I had a good friend tell me that marriage is a higher calling for me than a mission is right now. That helped me solidify my decision to stay home and marry Jake.  I have not regretted it either.  I love being married!  Mindy that is totally exciting!  I can't believe its Chad!  That would be so cool if you married him.  Keep me informed!


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
October 18, 2000

I have decided to stay home off my mission.  Last weekend was wonderful.  On Friday Chad and I went on a date with two of his friends.  I set Chani up with his friend David.  We went to some wedding receptions and then we played croquet at Levi’s house.  The date actually wasn’t all that fun, but I enjoyed spending time with Chad.  He finished painting the house he was working on, so we got to do something fun for a change.  Saturday morning we were going to go wake boarding with Kaija and John, but Kaija decided she wanted to go home instead.  So I told Chad to just sleep in and then we would do something later on during the day.  I woke up on Sat. and called Natalie and we went roller blading.  I hadn’t talked to Natalie for a long time so it was good to see her and visit with her again.  When we finished roller blading I went home and called Chad and he came over and we went swimming.  That afternoon we stayed at my house and watched a movie and just relaxed.  Saturday evening we went to the corn maze with Deanne and Jake and Daneece, Amy, Staci, James, and Jake’s friend Josh.  I had a pretty fun time. 

Sunday was a nice day also.  I was going to fast about my decision to stay home off my mission on that day, but I didn’t get a chance to start fasting on Saturday night so I decided to fast on Monday instead.  Chad came to my ward on Sunday morning.  Then he went home to prepare a talk that he was going to give with the high councilman in his stake that afternoon.  My home teachers came over.  They gave a really good lesson and they introduced themselves.  I also introduced myself and told them about Chad and my mission call and how I was trying to decide whether or not to go on my mission or not.  When they prayed they prayed for me that I would be able to decide what to do.  I am really thankful that they came over and that I was able to share my feelings with them.  It really helped.  I went and ate lunch at Chani’s house after my home teachers came over then I went and heard Chad speak.  He did a wonderful job.  I sat next to his dad while he spoke.  Chad’s dad is a wonderful man.  He really loves his family, and so does his mom.  Chad’s family is really neat.  They remind me a lot of my family and I feel like I fit in their family.  My dad told me once a few years ago that when I looked for someone to marry I needed to find someone from a good family.  He told me that it might be hard to find someone who was raised with the values that our family has, because there are not many families that have the kind of rules my family does.  However, Chad’s family has rules and values that are very close, or even higher than my family’s.  Sunday night I went with Chad to his stake’s Relief Society presidency training meeting.  In Chad’s stake there is a Spanish branch and they asked him to translate for the Spanish branch’s Relief Society presidency.  It is amazing that he can translate like that.  He is very talented.  Chad’s mom is the Stake Relief Society President so she spoke.  She did a wonderful job. 

Monday morning I decided to take the afternoon off work so I could pray and ponder before I broke my fast.  I was going to go to the temple, but the temple is not open on Mondays.  So all day at work I read articles by the prophets about marriage and faith and other related topics.  Then I went home and prayed and took and nap and pondered about my decision.  I told Heavenly Father that I have thought through my circumstances and have decided that I will stay home from my mission and marry Chad.  (Chad has asked me to stay home, and he talks as if we will be getting married and plans like we will get married, but he has not proposed)  After re-reading Elder Scott’s talk about prayer that he gave in Oct. of 1989, I know that I need to make a decision and then Heavenly Father will help me to know if it is right.  Monday afternoon I called my Dad and told him that I have decided to stay home and he asked me if I have had a confirmation of my answer.  I told him that I still feel nervous at times, but that I feel good about my decision.  I also told him that I had to make a decision before I would know what is right.  He agreed with me, but told me to wait a few more days before I called off my farewell and mission.  He told me I would know by then.  Each day since Monday I have felt less nervousness and more peace.  When I am with Chad I feel really good about my decision and I feel that it is right.  Yesterday afternoon I got really scared about my decision.  My fear of making this decision really gets to me sometimes and challenges my faith, but even when I am scared I have still never worried about Chad being a good husband to me and a good father to our children.   I know Chad will provide for me spiritually and physically.  So yesterday at work when I was feeling scared I went into the bathroom and prayed and asked Heavenly Father to calm my fears and to confirm my decision if it was right.  I came back to my desk and the rest of the afternoon I felt very peaceful.  My fears went away.  I still feel nervous at times, but I feel that I have made the right decision.

Tonight we are having a girl’s night out.  Deanne, Sandi, Amy, Daneece, Chani, and I are going to go shopping at AZ Mills Mall.  After we go shopping I am going to hang out with Chad though.  Tomorrow night we are going to go to the State Fair.  Brandon and Jennifer are even going to come with us.  Leann Womack’s concert is tomorrow night.  She has some good songs so it should be fun. 

I guess that is all I have to write for now.  My life is going great.  I know Heavenly Father loves me and knows the desires of my heart.  I love my Heavenly Father and want to do his will, because I know if we do his will we will be eternally happy. 


P.S.  Today is Grandma Flake’s birthday.  She is such a wonderful lady.  I hope I can live like she did.  She was very righteous and had charity.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
October 23, 2000

Last Wed. when all the girls went shopping we had a fun time.  I got three shirts and I bought Chad two shirts.  After we went shopping Chad came over and we went out for ice cream and then ate in the park.  It was a nice evening.  Thursday night we went to the fair.  It was really fun.  The concert was good and after the concert we went and got some fry bread and watched the hypnotist show.  The show was so funny.  Friday night Chad, Chani, and I drove to Thatcher and watched EA’s Fall Sing.  The program was just like when I was at EA, but it was fun to go back and visit.  We saw so many people we knew and almost everyone asked us if we were engaged we just had to say no, not yet.  It wasn’t even that embarrassing.  Chani and Sandi followed around laughing because everyone was asking us and they thought it was hilarious.  It actually was kind of funny.  On Saturday we went to EA’s homecoming parade and then we went to eat at Casa Manana.  Then we went to the football game and drove back to Mesa

On our drive home it started raining really bad.  When we got off the freeway onto Ellsworth Road, Chad could hardly see and the roads had a lot of water on them, especially in the dips.  And one of the dips was so deep my car had water up to the doors.  We ran off the road a little bit and we stopped there for a few seconds, then I told Chad to keep going and we got back on the road safely.  We were lucky we weren’t hurt and that my car wasn’t damaged. 

When we got to Chad’s house there were a bunch of cars out front and I thought, oh no please don’t be at Chad’s house.  I didn’t look very good because I had been out in the rain all day and I had a T-shirt on, I didn’t want to meet a bunch of new people looking so sloppy.  But the cars were at his house.  His parents were having a party.  We went in and I was introduced to almost everyone and we got teased some more.  It wasn’t that bad though, I actually had fun.  We left the party early and went to Chani’s house to watch Toy Story 2.  I stayed the night at Chani’s house because her roommates were still in Thatcher. 

Sunday I was released as the ward organist, and Amy was called to replace me.  I love to play the organ, but I look forward to being able to sit in the congregation again for a while.  After church we went to Chani’s for lunch.  We had stew and fry bread.  It was really good because it was raining out.  Warm soup is always good on a stormy day.  I had to go to my house to get some ingredients for the fry bread.  When I did there was a message there to call Bishop Smith from my home ward in Snowflake.  (I still had not told him I wasn’t going to have a farewell anymore.)  When I called him and told him about Chad he thought the news was wonderful and he told me he would call up to Salt Lake and put my mission on hold.  He told me he was going to do that just in case I ended up going on a mission because that would save me from having to do all the paperwork again.  He said that the Church will put a mission on hold for 6 months, and if the missionary doesn’t go within the six months their names are withdrawn and it is like it never happened.  I thought that was pretty cool.  Bishop Smith is a good Bishop I can already tell.  After lunch at Chani’s house we relaxed for a while then we went out to Chad’s house and ate dinner.  Later that night we went to Jace and Macaia’s (Chad’s brother and sister-in-law’s) new apartment.  We visited with them for a while and looked at their wedding and engagement pictures.  It was fun. 

I really love Chad.  He told me last week that he loved me.  I love him too, a lot.  I know he will make a good husband and father.  He treats me like a princess.  I hope that I will always treat him as good as his treats me.  It will be hard to match, because he treats me with such respect, but I am going to love working together with him. [I’m laughing at my word choice there. Working?]  I know the church is true.

Mindy Flake

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
Monday October 30, 2000

Chad asked me to marry him!  He asked me on Saturday while we were in the Temple.  It was really neat.  We were sitting in the Celestial Room in the Mesa Temple talking after we did a session.  Then he said, “Mindy the Temple is a very special place and I am glad that I have been able to come here with you.”  He told me that he had gotten a confirmation to his prayers about marrying me.   Then he knelt down and asked me if I would be his eternal companion.  I said yes.  Then he got up and sat next to me and we enjoyed the Spirit of the Celestial Room at the Temple for a while longer.  On the drive back to my house, after we got out of the Temple we decided that we wouldn’t make our engagement known to the public until he asks my dad for my hand.  He has not purchased a ring yet; we will go look for one together.  I received a confirmation to my prayers last Tuesday when I went to the temple.  I had Tuesday afternoon off work so I went to the temple.  I did some sealings and while I was in there I prayed about marrying Chad and felt very good about it.  As I watched the sealer seal people who have passed on together for eternity I realized I wanted that for Chad and I.  

Saturday night Chad and I went to eat with Travis, Teresa, their family, Debbie, and Amy.  It was fun.  Travis and Teresa had not met Chad yet so I was glad they were able to meet him.  After we ate we borrowed some movies from Chani then went to my house and watched one.  It was a nice evening.  

I am glad that I finally received a definite answer to whether or not I should marry Chad.  I know he will make a good husband.  Although things are not all smooth sailing right now.  Satan never gives up on you, especially when you are trying to make worthy goals and decisions.  I continue to pray for strength and guidance.  I know that Heavenly Father loves me and hears and answers prayers.

Mindy Flake

Mindy’s letter to her Mom about our engagement.
Oct. 30, 2000

I am glad that the talks went well on Sunday.  [My family still had to give talks on what would have been my farewell.]  I have to admit that I was very glad that I didn't have to give one.  Aunt Nerita called yesterday to talk to Kaija and she told me that Uncle Steve told everyone that I was engaged, but then Dad got up and explained my situation.  But actually Uncle Steve was right.  Chad asked me to marry him while we were at the temple On Saturday, and I said yes.  But he wants to ask Dad before we announce it, so don't tell everyone yet please; besides I like to tell people about it because it is exciting.  Is Dad coming down this week, if so what day?

Please let me know.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Chad’s Journal
Wednesday November 1, 2000

I think I left off with our “charla franca” night.  [That roughly translates to a “frank discussion”.  We used that term on the mission when we had to have a serious conversation with investigators about if they wanted to move forward with the gospel or not…Chad] After that weekend, Mindy and I started seeing each other every night from then on.  She came over that Sunday and met my family after I went to her church.  We missed one night when I was painting DJ’s house and had to spend a lot of time over there.  The Wednesday after we started seeing each other regularly we went out with Jace and Macaia after Institute.  I still hadn’t held her hand or kissed her yet.  I wanted to, but the missionary in me always prevailed.  Then that night we were in the parking lot and she grabbed my hand and I hugged her, and we didn’t let go for a long time.  It felt really awkward to me.  I had never been that close to a girl for that long before.  I finally got up the courage to ask her if I could give her a kiss good night and she said yes, so I kissed her.  My first kiss ever!!  I think I did alright.  I didn’t miss or anything like that.  That kind of felt awkward also.  That night she invited me up to Snowflake to meet her parents.  So we went on Friday the 29th of September up there to her house and I met quite a few members of her family.  I only saw her dad for a couple of minutes because he went to brand cattle and fell off his horse and busted some ribs and hurt his shoulder bad so he went to the hospital.  We went out to help brand also and I branded my first cow.  It was fun.  She took me around town and showed me the historical church sites including the hill where there is going to be a temple built in Snowflake.  Her family seemed really good and they didn’t pick on me too much. 

So we have been doing something together every single night.  I go to school until 12:30, work until 6:00, and then I’m with Mindy till midnight.  I don’t get much sleep or much homework done.  It is great though.  I just really enjoy being with her.  Here is our schedule.  Monday we go to her FHE at MCC and then we play basketball or volleyball afterward.  Tuesday we go to her Institute class and then hang out afterward.  Wednesday we go to my institute class and then we hang out afterward.  Thursday we do something different every week.  Friday we usually go on a date.  Saturday we usually spend the whole day together.  Sunday I go to her church and then she comes out to my house to eat dinner and visit with my family.  Then we do it again.  We have really good walks and talks after the activities.  We walk around her apartment complex or a park or anywhere and talk.  It is really fun.  [On one of our walks around the complex it had recently rained, we were hugging and walking at the same time and I was walking backwards while Chad was going forward.  To be funny, Chad backed me into some water dripping off the covered parking structures.  I still laugh about that every time I think about it.  Chad loves to tease, but it is all good natured and fun. – Mindy]

The 20th and the 21st of October we went to EAC to the Fall Sing program.  Dr. Lunt is retiring this year so we wanted to go see it.  We saw tons of people we knew.  Everyone was asking what Mindy was doing holding some guys hand when she was leaving in a few weeks for her mission.  She would just smile, look at me, and say “I’m not going.”  We had people following us (that knew) just to laugh at the reactions of people we knew.  It brought back so many memories to go there and walk around Thatcher.  I tried to think back to what made me decide to go there instead of ASU, U of A, or NAU where I had a regent’s scholarship.  The only thing I can think of is that I was lead there to meet my future wife.  She was in my family home evening group there.  We used to play volleyball every Thursday at open gym.  She even asked me to the Winter Dance.   [It was a girl ask guy dance. –Mindy]  I had a mission to go on so I didn’t want to get into anything. 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s mother’s letter to family and friends announcing our engagement.
November 1, 2000       

In case Mindy hasn't yet called you, her engagement is now official.  Chad talked to Daddy about their coming marriage last night, in Mesa.  I called about 10:30, (after trying for an hour and 1/2, discovering later that Daddy had not hung up the phone after answering it earlier) and asked Mindy if he has just straight out asked him.  She then gave him the phone and he asked me if he could marry her.  I said yes to him and then Daddy said that they had just talked about it without him actually asking for his blessing.  So I got in on the excitement, even though I was here in Snowflake and they were in Mesa.  Pretty neat, huh?  Of course the dates aren't finalized yet.  Daddy has to go back to the Capitol on Fri. and if I can get down there this weekend, I can find out a little more about things.  Besides, I need to get some quilt material and get started on her quilt.
Love, MOM/ML

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
November 9, 2000

What a fun engagement I have had.  We talked to my Dad about our plans to get married and got his blessing on Oct. 31.  We also went ring shopping for the first time on that day.  We originally planned to get married on Feb. 16, 2001 buy we decided to move the wedding date up to Jan. 2, 2001.  His Priesthood leaders thought that waiting till February would be too long, and we didn’t really want to get married in the middle of school and the legislative session, so we are getting married a week before the session starts.  [I worked at the AZ House of Representatives, that’s why we planned around the legislative session. -Mindy]  We have ordered my wedding ring from a man in his stake, Bro. Halstead.  I was happy to go to someone who was honest.  He discussed with us all our options, so we got exactly what we wanted.  Engagement is so fun our wedding plans are underway.  It is kind of weird that I am actually planning a wedding for me.  I have always wanted to get married and it is finally going to happen!

Last night Chad and I went to his institute class then we went to his house and talked over wedding plans with his mom.  It was fun to see his little sisters and visit with his parents.  The best part of the evening was the drive back to my car at the institute building.  Chad and I started talking about all the little details of how we started dating and our feelings as our relationship started out, and how we were so thankful to have finally found someone who had the standards we wanted in an eternal companion.  I shared with him a scripture that I liked while I was trying to find my eternal companion, it is D&C 88:68.  It was such a nice talk.  I love Chad so much and I so thankful for him.  He is such a great guy. 

I guess I am going to cut this entry short.  I love the gospel and I know Heavenly Father is mindful of all his children. 


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Chad’s Journal
November 14, 2000 

I had been praying a lot thanking Heavenly Father for Mindy in my life and I went to the temple by myself on a Friday.  (She had to work.)  At the temple I went through a session and prayed a lot in the celestial room.  I received another wonderful confirmation and I just felt really blessed in my life to be that close to Mindy.  She missed her homecoming and is missing her whole mission for us.  I love her very very much and I want to be with her forever.  I have never had negative feelings while praying about her and have always felt really good.  She will be an excellent wife and mother.  I knew I had to ask her to marry me because she had done her part of canceling officially the whole mission thing.  So I decided I wanted to ask her to marry me in the temple in the celestial room.  She is endowed and we have gone through a session together.  There aren’t many girls that have been through the temple before they are engaged so this would be special.  We finally found a day we could both go.  Saturday the 28th of October of 2000.  We went through a session and we sat in the Celestial room talking till everyone left.  When we were mostly alone, I got down on one knee and asked her to marry me and be my eternal companion.  She said yes.  That room is the closest to heaven you can get on earth and I felt like we were there.  After we left the temple I gave her 2 dozen roses and we went out to eat Chinese food.  We decided not to tell anyone till I spoke with her dad and got permission.  I wasn’t sure when that would be but when I called on Tuesday the 31st of October (Halloween) to see what we were doing, she said we could go look at rings and that her dad was there!  Surprise, Surprise.  So I spoke with Jake Flake Halloween night and he gave me permission as well as his wife did (she called).  [I was actually so nervous that I didn’t actually ask her dad permission.  When her mom called I asked her if I could marry her daughter.  So I kind of did that backwards…Chad]  The next day we told everyone and the word spread quite quickly.  We ordered a diamond from a guy in my stake and it is supposed to be pretty nice compared to what you find in the mall.  We had originally set the date for February 16th which would have been 3 and ½ months.  A lot of older people and other married couples said that was kind of long.  We thought about it and decided to move it up to the first week in January so we could still have a decent honeymoon.  We decided on the 2nd of January of 2001 (Chad’s sister Anna’s birthday).  It is a Tuesday.  We are glad we moved it up.  It put a little bit more stress on the preparation of everything but February would have been kind of long.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
Friday November 17, 2000

Last Saturday Chad and I decided to go look at condos, but before we went we called Brandon because he and Jennifer just bought a condo and we thought we would get some advice from them.  They were so helpful.  They told us about their Realtor, Diane Smith from Castle Rock Properties, and their Mortgage guy and how they were really good and honest and LDS.  So we met with the realtor and the mortgage guy, looked at a few condos, found one we liked, made an offer on it, and applied for a loan all in the same day!  It was amazing.  Things really worked out well.  On Sunday the Realtor called us back and told us the seller accepted our offer, so we had 10 days to decide whether we wanted to buy it or not.  His parents thought it was a good idea to buy it and it sounded like a good deal.  On Sunday night I called my mom and dad and told them about it.  They also thought our decisions sounded good.  My dad came down on Monday and we took him to see our condo, to make sure he thought it looked good.  So now we have to get it inspected and meet with the Mortgage guy to make sure we qualified for the loan we wanted.  It is really exciting buying a house and getting things ready for our new life together. 

Last Saturday after we finished meeting with the realtor we went to a party at Marcy Players house.  We ate dinner and played some games, then Chad took me to the Temple and gave me my engagement ring.  I knew he had it because of some comments he made earlier in the day, but he wanted to give it to me in a special place instead of just handing it to me.  So when we got to the temple we walked to the west entrance on the West Side of the reflection pool.  The he knelt down and asked me if I would marry him in the temple on Jan. 2, 2001 at 11:15 am.  I felt kind of silly having him down there so I hurried and said yes and had him get up.  I don’t know why I feel so silly when stuff like that happens, I love to see it in the movies, but when it is for me I just feel silly.  I hope I didn’t hurt his feelings.  The ring is so beautiful.  It is exactly what I wanted! 

Sunday I played for Charlotte Smith to sing and her friend’s missionary report, and then I went to Chad’s ward in Queen Creek.  We spent the rest of the day at his home in Queen Creek and ate dinner and visited with his family.

Monday night we started our city league basketball season again.  We played well and we won.  It was really fun.  I am excited for this season.  The rest of this week has gone well.  We are still doing wedding plans and are working on buying our condo, and we still have a lot of fun while doing them. 

I know the church is true and Heavenly Father loves us!!


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
November 28, 2000

Thanksgiving was wonderful.  On Thanksgiving Day I woke up and took my time getting ready and I even got to exercise.  I stayed at my dad’s condo by myself because everyone else had gone home.  Then I went to Chad’s house around noon.  I spent the day with his family.  After dinner we went over to a nearby school and played basketball and soccer.  Later that evening Chad and I drove to Snowflake.  We had such a fun time.  We relaxed, visited, rode horses, played basketball, and got a Christmas tree for Chad’s mom.  It was the best Thanksgiving I have ever had. 

Our wedding plans are coming along nicely.  I am getting more stressed out about things and am pretty busy, but it is all worth it.  We have exactly 5 weeks left, 35 more days, and then we will be married.  I grow to love Chad more and more each day.  Sunday night we had a very nice talk, he shared some of his mission stories with me.  It was really nice.  He is such and nice man and I am amazed that I have been blessed with him.  He is exactly what I have always wanted. 

About a week and a half ago Chad and I took our announcement pictures.  When we went to go pick them up, we got in a car accident.  Chad was driving my car and he ran into the back of his mom’s suburban.  She had to slam on her brakes because someone swerved in front of her and Chad wasn’t able to stop in time.  That was hard to go through, but things will work out and we will be able to get another car eventually.  I know that we will have trials throughout our life together and that we will just have to work through them. 

My city basketball team has lost our last two games.  They were pretty close though.  Hopefully we will be able to get better as the season goes on.  I can’t think of anything else to include for now, so I will close this entry.  The church is true.

Mindy Flake

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
December 13, 2000

Chad’s and my engagement is still going well.  I have been kind of sick lately.  I have the flu and it is moving very slowly.  I hope that I can get rid of it soon.  I will have to start getting to bed earlier so I will be able to fight off what is plaguing me. 

Last night Chad and I went Christmas shopping.  I was sick, so I probably wasn’t much fun.  I hope that I have been nice to Chad while I have been sick.  I hope he doesn’t worry that I am always going to be sick and grouchy.  I have tried to be fun, but I know I can do better and I will try to do better. 

Last Wednesday afternoon Amy, my dad, and I went to lunch at a Mexican restaurant.  He asked me some questions about Chad and I and kind of interviewed me.  He asked me if Chad was the leader in our relationship or if I was.  Because the night before we had talked about our condo and I hadn’t even shown some of the papers to Chad because it is all in my name and I didn’t know what it meant so I didn’t think Chad would.  [Chad hadn’t established any credit yet, so our first home was all in my name.  It’s kind of funny that Chad is a mortgage officer now and knows all the ins and outs of mortgages, but when we bought our first house we had no clue what anything meant.  We just knew what kind of payment we could afford and it all worked out. - Mindy]  As he was talking with me I realized that I needed to do better.  I started feeling really bad about the decisions I had been making.  I wasn’t letting Chad lead our relationship like I should have.  When I say lead I don’t me dictate, but lead in a righteous way like a Priesthood holder should lead.  Then I read in the scriptures that Heavenly Father shows us our weakness so we can become strong.  I also realized that The Savior has given me the opportunity to fix my mistakes and learn to do things the right way.  I am so thankful for the gospel plan.  I hope Chad and I can work as partners and that I can hearken to him as he follows Heavenly Father.  I am going to try to do better. 

Chad’s and my condo is going to close tomorrow.  Our Mortgage guy has gotten us an even better interest rate than we first thought we would get.  Things are all falling into place.  I hope we can find a car and furniture before we get married.  We have less than 3 weeks before we get married.  I am so excited.

I guess that is all I have to write for now.


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Journal
January 9, 2001

Well I am officially Mrs. Chad Sanders.  We were married exactly one week ago today.  I love married life, and I love Chad more and more each day.  I guess I better start with how my Christmas and New Year’s went then I will write about our wedding. Chad and I rode up to Snowflake on the 23rd of Dec. with Kaija.  We got a ride because we decided to buy my dad Ford Taurus from him and drive it back down to Mesa.  Christmas Eve was on Sunday and we went to Church with my family.  In Relief Society I finally started to feel more of the Christmas Spirit.  I realized how blessed I was to have such a great family and to have Chad and for all the things they had helped me with to get our wedding planned.  Christmas Day was wonderful.  It started snowing mid-morning and did not stop all day.  In fact the roads were so bad we could even make it back to Mesa until the next day so I got to take and extra day off work. 

New Years was fun.  For New Year’s Eve Chad and I went to a party at Tina Cluff’s house.  We played games with our friends.  I was excited because this was the first New Year I have had someone to kiss at midnight.  New Year ’s Day I packed up my belongings and moved into our Condo.  That evening we went to a BBQ at Jace and Macaia’s house.  Then that evening Chad and I spent our last single evening together on a walk around my dad’s condo.  We had quite a few walks there and we reminisced about the first time we took a walk around the complex and he asked me if I would be willing to stay off my mission if things worked out between us.  It was a great night. 

Tuesday, our Wedding Day, went very nicely.  I got up and Teresa came over and fixed my hair.  Then my mom took me to the Temple and I got to go to the Bride’s room and put my wedding dress on.  The Sealing/Ceremony was very nice.  Chad and I took the time to write them down on our way home from the luncheon.  These are the things we remembered:

v  We made covenants when we were baptized, endowed, on a mission, and now we took upon ourselves the new and everlasting covenant of marriage, the most important covenant of all.  When we were washed and annointed we were promised/blessed to become a King and a Priest and a Queen and a Priestess. 
v  Marriage is a great blessing, but the greatest blessing only comes if we do our part.  Children are also a great blessing.  Always remember it may not always be easy, but it is worth it.
v  At the beginning of the ceremony he told us that the veil between the sealing rooms and paradise are very thin.  He said that our family and friends who have passed on were probably at our wedding too. 
v  The marriage license are only valid until death, the sealing is forever.  Since we made the choice to get married in the Temple our marriage is sealed forever is we keep our covenants. 
v  The Rings are mad of precious metal, but not as precious as our love for each other.  The are a symbol of eternity.

One of my most favorite parts of the sealing was when he told us the veil between the sealing room and paradise is very thin, and that our family and friends on the other side of the veil were watching.  That meant a lot to me because I know my Grandma Flake must have been watching.  I am sad Chad has never gotten to meet her.  I know he will be able to meet her later though. 

After the Wedding we took family pictures on the temple grounds.  Then we went to Queen Creek for the luncheon.  The luncheon was very very nice.  The whole day went well.  After the luncheon Chad and I went to our condo and packed then we went to our Hotel in Scottsdale.  The Hotel, actually it was a resort/spa, was very nice.  Our room was big.  Wednesday morning we slept in then went to breakfast and drove to San Diego.  When we were about an hour and a half away from San Diego we notices our car, the Taurus we just bought from my dad, started blowing white smoke.  So we turned around the town we had just passed.  And checked things out then started out towards San Diego again.  We made it there, but the car still was smoking.  So the next morning we took it to a mechanic and he checked things out and said that things should be fine.  So that afternoon we drove down to the border and took a bus into Tijuana.  We walk through a bunch of little shops all along the street.  It was so fun.  I have always wanted to go bargain with the traders in Mexico.  After that we drove back to our hotel, which was the Hotel Del Coronado, and got ready to go to the San Diego temple.  We drove to the Temple only to find out that it was closed for a couple of weeks.  We were kind of sad, actually really sad because we have both really wanted to go to that Temple for a long time.  After that we decided to use the gift certificate Penny and Dean gave us for babysitting at the outback.  After that we went to the motel and walked on the beach. 

The next morning we didn’t sleep in very late because we wanted to give ourselves enough time to make it back to our reception incase our car gave us more problems.  Boy I am glad we left when we did.  Our car was still smoking out the tail pipe and using a lot of water so we made sure we kept putting enough in so it wouldn’t over heat.  It hadn’t even started to overheat yet so we weren’t worried.  But then when we were about 20 miles out of Yuma our car died.  Water started boiling out, however the gauge still read normal, it must have been broken.  So we waited for a while to see if it would cool down and start back up, but we didn’t have much time to spare because we had to get back for our reception.  So we decided to call for a tow truck.  Good think California has call boxes on the side of the freeway.  So the tow truck took us into Yuma.  We took our car to the Ford Dealership there then went to Enterprise rent a car.  Then we left to come to Mesa.  We made it to the church at 6:55 and our reception started at 7:00.  Teresa did my hair really fast and I put on my dress and we got ready by about 20 after 7:00.  Teresa also did most of the decorations.  She did such a great job.  I feel kind of bad though because it really wore her out.  She did a lot of work.  It looked very pretty. 

Friday night after the reception we spent our first night together in our new house.  In the morning I woke up and made Chad breakfast and cleaned things up a bit then we drove to Snowflake for our reception down there.  Both receptions were very nice.  They were really fun.  After the reception Chad and I drove back to Mesa.  We had a hard time staying awake, but we made it safely. 
Sunday we went to our new ward together.  We are in the Alma 5th ward in the Mesa West Stake.  It is the same stake I was in before; the Mesa College wards are both in the Stake.  I think I am really going to like the new ward.  Their meetings were very good and the people are very friendly. 

Well I guess that about catches me up.  Last night we had our first tournament game for our city league basketball team.  We lost :( so now we are out of the tournament.  Yesterday Chad had to go back to Yuma to drop off our rental car and to tow the Taurus back.  My dad bought the car back from us since it didn’t work very long.  So now we have to get another car.  I called Chad this afternoon and found out that he starts work tomorrow.  The place he is working at is a call center, he might not work there very long because he has some applications in at Motorola and Bank One and they pay for schooling.  I am very relieved that he has a job now.  I worry about things a lot and now I don’t have to worry about that.  I better go for now.  The church is true and the blessings from living the gospel are endless. 

Mindy Sanders

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Mindy’s Mother’s Family Letter/Journal about our wedding
Wednesday, January 3, 2001

Dear Family,

Well, here we are in the New Year, millennium, and the first day of the rest of our lives. Mindy's and Chad's wedding was yesterday and was beautiful. It was a lovely day in Mesa. We enjoyed the taking of pictures out on the Temple grounds and other than a slight breeze, which made some a little cool, it was very comfortable. Those of us who are used to real breezes here in the high country, loved it. It sure was a lot better than the summer weddings we've had in the past. Now Mindy and Celeste will always share the same anniversary date.

All of the children and their spouses were there. Teresa had to go home to get her recommend, but was in the Temple to congratulate Mindy and Chad after the wedding. She was so good to come over and fix Mindy's hair (in a nest as Jake called it) early that morning. I felt bad that she missed the actual wedding ceremony. But, she told us that she felt like one of the foolish virgins of the parable. She usually has her recommend in her purse, but left it with her Temple clothes after the last use. I know that many people have learned that lesson the hard way. Even Aunt Ruth had to call the bishop or counselor as she forgot to bring her recommend with her that day. I remember that once when we were on vacation, I left my purse in a service station up in Canada and when we got to Ogden, I couldn't go to that temple because I didn't have my recommend with me. I was lucky to get it and my purse back a week or so later, but I had to do without it for a while. I seemed empty, somehow.

I hope Mindy and Chad were able to make other arrangements to get to San Diego today. Celeste called and said the news reported that Interstate 8 was closed because of wild fires between here and there. I even saw that report later today. She was going to call Chad's mom to see if she knew how to get a message to them, so they could at least cancel their rooms if nothing else. But I won't know what happened until this weekend.

Darin has been sick with the "crud" that has been going around, and I heard that Doug's children woke up sick this morning before they were to leave to head back to Utah. I even have developed a deep cough and slight headache, but with a little medicine and a little rest, I hope I won't be as sick as some have been. Maybe I'll have time to get sick and baby myself after the receptions and the opening day of the legislative session the following Monday.

I took the book on tape (which I already have) that Crystal gave me for Christmas back to the store today and traded it in for a clip art program. I'm anxious to use it now. Maybe I'll use it in my letter so you can see some of what it has in it. But, I know that everyone can't see clip art, so I'll send it twice. Once with and once without if I can work it out.

I love you all and hope that your New Year is a good one. Mine has started out well.

Love, MOM/Mary Louise/ML

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Letters from family and friends after I announced our engagement.

From: Noelle LeCheminant                             Oct. 20, 2000

Oh my gosh! That is so cool! I know I haven't met Chad, but he sounds perfect for you. Tall, athletic, and he even sings! That is so awesome. I wanna hear more details, especially if something happens! Seriously girl, I am so happy for you. I hope things keep going good. Oh, I wish I was in Mesa right now so we could talk and talk and talk.......okay you know how I am. Write back soon. Love ya tons!

From: Jessica McEwen                                 Oct. 23, 2000
Mindy, I am really excited for you. I am sure that your family is also happy. I am living in Denver Colorado, and working for my sisters husband. It is good money, and it was a really good move for me. But the hard thing is that i have left all of my friends, and I know nobody here. It has been hard, but I know that with time, i will meet people. There are like only 50 mormons in the state of colorado. WE went to cuhrch and nobody was there. I am hoping to find a student ward, and maybe meet some friends that way. Well Mindy, I just wanted to tell you how happy I am for you, and that you better fill me in on all the details. Always Jessica

From:  Darin Jones                                                                                               Oct. 24, 2000


Good for you.
(I guess this means you won't be marrying me now.)

You had better let me meet him to see if he passes my evaluation!

Good luck,


From:  Mette Holstein                                     Oct. 27, 2000


I don´t know what to say!!!!!!!! That is so wonderful that you have met this guy - you have to keep me ud-dated on everything that happens - when you get engaged and you have to send me a wedding announcment - promise. I collecting those.

Wow wasn´t it a hard to decied to not go on a mission???? Well I hope things are going very well for you. Who is this guy by the way and there did you meet???

Denmark is great and busy. Returning to school is something else then working but I´m gettin a habg of it now. I´m still dating Peter, the guy I told you about this summer. 6 months now - time is flying, but he is just the sweetest. In two week we are going on a weekend cruise on a big ferry between Denmark and Norway and it is going to be so romantic.

Well I got to go. I have a class now - but keep me postet om what is happening.


From:  Kirsten Eich Sanderson                        Oct. 27, 2000


Just wanted to tell you congrats on turning down your mission. Just make sure your was-going-to-be mission president you're not making it. The day of my wedding, Lisa told me that the Detroit Mission Pres. called and asked where I was!!! I told her "I'm sorry, but I'm not going!" It was just funny cause supposedly Pres. West took care of it. Evidentally not, eh.

Well, I hope all turns out according to plans. He seems like a real nice guy. I am so excited for you!!! Way to be a good lobo. Just kidding.

I better go, but just wanted to let you know how excited I am for you.

Love Ya!

Kirsten Sanderson

From:  Marcy Player                                                                                  November 1, 2000

CONGRATULATIONS! I am so happy for you! That is so exciting! Febuary is not that far off you know?  I had to work until 8pm last night, so I just went home and ate dinner, took a shower, and went to bed. Tomorrow I am taking the whole day off so I can be in the Temple with my family. My mom, dad, Matt & I are attending two sessions together. It should be really

Please let me know if there is anything that I can do to help!

Love Ya, Marcy

From:  Tanner Simmons                                                                  November 1, 2000
YIPEEEEEEEEE!!! Mindy's Marrying a Mighty Man most likely not on a Monday. That's so cool, I am happy for you, Mindy. I really think Chad is an awesome guy. He totally schooled us all in B-Ball, but he's the kind that when he burns you--it's like you are cheering for him, I didn't mind at all when he whooped up on us. I can see that you are both happy, it reflects in both of you. Feb 15-16, huh? Why not make it the 14th? Valentine's Day?

I went to the temple yesterday, and did initiatories, it was so cool. I came out so at peace. I must admit the last few days, I have been rather prideful with Aida. Yesterday, after leaving the temple I realized that. I came very close to giving her up. Our Father in Heaven loves us so much, and gosh it's amazing how much he cares for us and gives us things that truly make us happy. I can assume that you are pretty happy right now.
Well, I will talk to you a little later,

From:  Duane Mortenson                               November 1, 2000


CONGRATULATIONS!!! i am so happy for you. you deserve the best, so i am sure your friend is a special guy for him to be able to marry you. what will you new name be? things are going well here. well actually i am having a hard time. school is really hard and i wish i had more friends. i know that this experience has brought me closer to the lord so that is good. well, i am happy for you. thanks for be such a great friend.


From:  Kent Flake                                    Nov. 2, 2000

Congrats on your engagement. That is exciting. You guys look good together. After you get married don't forget about us poor singles. We will still be having fun while you are getting old. Oh wait, marriage is more fun but still don't forget us. No, I am really excited and I guess this means Chad will have to be my favorite cousin-in-law.

Take Care,


From:  Noelle LeCheminant                                 Nov. 2, 2000

Oh Mindy!

Congratulations! I am so excited for you, and that is awesome how Chad asked you. I can't think of a better place to get engaged than the temple. Where are you guys getting married? In the Mesa temple? When will the Snowflake temple be finished? Well, I know you'll be incredibly busy in the months ahead, but I would love to see you when I come home for Christmas Break and help out with anything, invitations, errands, etc. Just let me know and fill me in on any details when get a second too, okay? Ahhh, Mindy this is so exciting. Chad is one lucky guy because I think you are one awesome girl. Seriously Mindy, I hope you know how much I look up to you. Thanks for your example- I appreciate it so much!

From:  Crystal                                                                                                       Nov. 2, 2000

Congratulations Mindy.  I'm happy for you.


From: Aaron Carpenter                                                       Nov. 2, 2000

Congratulations! I hope all goes well with the wedding plans :)

From:  Erica Wellman                                 November 2, 2000

I knew it! good for you! i totally trust your judgement so go girl and be happy!   Hey, i bought a new car last night! a saturn. i am soo excited to not have to drive that other car! i have been  absolutely busy, so see ya later! e

From:  Pam Flake                                                                                                 Nov. 9, 2000


I just checked our e-mail, and read about your good news!!!  Congratulations!!!  I'll tell Shon when he gets home, unless you sent him the news to his office at school.  Either way I know he'll be so happy for you.  I know we only met Chad once, but he sure seemed like a nice

What a wonderful way for you both to start your life together (in the temple)!  Tell him I'm very impressed that he did it that way!  I know you'll have fun with all the planning and excitement.  Thanks for letting us know, and we'll set aside Jan. 2 on our calendar.



1 comment:

Jennifer said...

I am very impressed that you now have this recorded all in one place for yourself and posterity!