A Little History:
Our story begins in Pocatello, Idaho, circa 1972, when the lovely Debby Christensen agreed to a first, though fateful date with admirer, David Croshaw. Long story-short, he bade her follow him, and they went arm-in-arm to the Logan, Utah temple for establishment of an eternal family unit, Generation 1, on May 23 1973.

From their first blissful summer in Salt Lake City, educational pursuits took them to Provo/Orem, Utah, birthplace of Leslie and Rebecca, and to San Francisco/Oakland California, birthplace of Colin and Matt. Then, for establishment of livelihood, expansion of the tribe with Abby and Dana, and for raising/unifying of Generation 2, it was back to the roots in Pocatello for a rewarding sojourn.

In time, driven by a raging, but commonly shared sense of adventure and independence, one-by-one, Generation 2 escaped the homeland to distant regions of the country and the world, each ultimately developing their own tribal expansions by pairing with worthy mates and initiating Generation 3.

Now sensing fulfillment of their purpose in Pocatello, Generation 1 has also left those roots and transplanted to Cascade Idaho, from which base, they anticipate more abundant contact with The Posterity, Generations 2 and 3, in the future. That contact however, awaits fulfillment of a call to LDS missionary service in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, wherein they hope to help the state of the world by sharing the love of Jesus Christ.

So now, including Generation 0 (Grandma and Grandpa Christensen) home base includes Yuma, Arizona, Pocatello, Idaho, Cascade, Idaho, Vancouver, BC, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Spokane, Washington, Boise, Idaho, Los Angeles, California, back to Boise, Idaho, and on and on (Generation 3+) to infinity.

Our Mission Statement:
This is the blog of our eternal family unit. Initiated years ago, it served well as a journal, but even more so, as an archive of our personal interaction. It was a gathering place, a confabulation instrument, a unifying force for four generations of widely dispersed and progressively prolific posterity, and their valued associates. Though it served these purposes well for many years, it eventually took a back seat to new-kids-on-the-block, Facebook, and Instagram, and was sadly forgotten.

We now move to resurrect this blog with an added functional purpose of archiving the missionary experiences of Generation 1, of their movements and activities as they participate with The Gathering of Israel in the land northward. In so doing, we hope that via their own comments and posts, this blog will again serve to gather and unify the posterity and their friends.

As in the past, that the young and vibrant may know the old and tired, that enduring bonds may be fostered and maintained, that experience and encouragement may be openly shared, that posterity may embrace truth, and that hearts may be knit together, we must resist detachment despite our geographic divergence. We shall do so here.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Eat your hearts out, children of the 80's, or was it the 90's?

Hammer Ice Concert--Idaho Falls, ID--Civic Auditorium--June 6, 2009

Thursday, May 28, 2009


Eighty two years ago on this day Gerald Othello Christensen came into the world. He was born to Ezra Otello Christensen and Emma Vida Criddle Christensen. He is beloved by all--wife, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren and children everywhere. What a blessing you have been in our lives. We hope you have a happy, happy day.


just saw this. i hope i can put it on the blog. i haven't tried to put a video on from utube before. ray, maybe you can do some pest control rap....

ok, i don'tknowhow to do it. here is the link. help

could someone email me instructions for adding a video on the blog?

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Hi. I'm in Kenya.

I figured this would be the easiest way to get the word out.  I made it safe, I'm all settled in my place, and I intentionally had a crazy sleeping schedule on my two-day flight so I could sleep through the night once I got here.  I left my hotel in Palmyra at 8:00am Sunday.  Four connections later, I got to Mombasa, Kenya at 11:30pm (Kenya time) Monday.  It was a party.  We'll see how long it takes me to hit my wall today.  

Just to orient everyone, I'm working in Mombasa (It's an island.  Sort of.) and living in Nyali Beach, just north of Mombasa.  (It's the "rich" area, where all the white people live...although I haven't seen any other white people yet.)  You can see them both here.  Not such a bad living situation.  I think it'll suit me just fine.  So far, there are two other interns here that I live with, Aaron and Andi - an awesome couple that got married about four months ago.  It's really cool that they're doing this together as newlyweds...but I don't think I'll go that route.

I'm at Yehu now, just waiting around to get a folder of info so I can learn about this place, and maybe possibly figure out what exactly I'll be doing here.  Over the next week or so, I'm going to try to get more oriented and take some pictures of the everyday stuff (like my mosquito net-covered bed, the Nakumat A.K.A. Wal-Mart, and the packed matatu taxis I ride to work), so you can get a feel for what life here is like.  

I was going to upload some pictures from my travels, but the Internet is too spotty.  I'll try to do that later.  But just know that I'm here and all is well!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Doctrine & Covenants

So...in my institute class this year, we've been studying the Doctrine and Covenants. What I like about institute classes that is different than gospel doctrine classes, is that you get to talk about more detail that you seem to in a gospel doctrine class. We're nearing the end of the semester, and last week we talked about sections 135, 136 and 137. There were several things I either learned or of which I was reminded.

Sec 135
1) Was it necessary that Hyrum Smith seal his testimony with his blood? President Joseph Fielding Smith, grandson of Hyrum Smith, explained: “The Prophet Joseph Smith conferred upon Hyrum Smith all the keys, authority and gifts of the priesthood which he, the Prophet, held, and which were formerly held by Oliver Cowdery. The Lord also revealed to Hyrum Smith all that was necessary to make him completely and to the full degree, a witness with his brother Joseph, as a prophet, seer, revelator and president of the Church, and to stand through all time and eternity at the head of this dispensation with his brother Joseph, a witness for Jesus Christ.

“Thus, we see, Hyrum Smith became a president of the Church with Joseph Smith, which place Oliver Cowdery might have held had he not wavered and fallen from his exalted station. I am firmly of the opinion that had Oliver Cowdery remained true to his covenants and obligations as a witness with Joseph Smith, and retained his authority and place, he, and not Hyrum Smith, would have gone with Joseph Smith as a prisoner and to martyrdom at Carthage.“The sealing of the testimony through the shedding of blood would not have been complete in the death of the Prophet Joseph Smith alone; it required the death of Hyrum Smith who jointly held the keys of this dispensation. It was needful that these martyrs seal their testimony with their blood, that they ‘might be honored and the wicked might be condemned.’”

2) Why did Willard Richards escape injury?
“Dr. Richards’ escape was miraculous; he being a very large man, and in the midst of a shower of balls, yet he stood unscathed, with the exception of a ball which grazed the tip end of the lower part of his left ear. His escape fulfilled literally a prophecy which Joseph made over a year previously, that the time would come that the balls would fly around him like hail, and he should see his friends fall on the right and on the left, but that there should not be a hole in his garment.”
Sec 136
3) Has the U.S. been vexed (cursed) because of the its persecution of the Saints?
Elder B. H. Roberts quoted 3 Nephi 16:10, the Savior’s warning of what would happen if the Gentiles rejected His gospel, and said: “That is what the people of the United States did when they rejected from habitation among them, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and expatriated the membership thereof, so that they were under the necessity of finding a refuge in a land, which, at the time our fathers entered it—The Salt Lake Valley—was no part of the United States of America—but was Mexican territory. (Did you know Utah was once Mexico? I need to review my American history.)

“Listen to this: it is a revelation that we do not often refer to, but it has some very choice gems in it. It is the ‘Word and Will of the Lord to President Brigham Young,’ given at Winter Quarters, and, among other things, this was said: [D&C 136:34–36].

“I think our country at that time did not repent of the wrongs they had done in this and other things, for this proclamation was immediately followed by the war with Mexico, in which at least those regiments that were selected from western Illinois—one of them at least, was well nigh wiped out of existence in the war with Mexico; and it was about the only disastrous engagement that we had in that war. Then followed the awful war, between 1861 and 1865, in which, as I believe, the hand of God severely punished the United States of America, in fulfilment of the wonderful prediction that was made by the Prophet Joseph Smith, in relation to the calamities that would befall the nation.” (In Conference Report, Oct. 1922, pp. 17–18.)

Since the Civil War, the United States has been involved in numerous major wars including the Spanish-American War, World Wars I and II, the Korean and Vietnam Wars, and the Gulf War. Nor has war been the only means of vexation. Depressions, natural disasters, and other calamities have plagued the nation. The prophetic promise is that if the people of this nation do not serve the God of the land, who is Jesus Christ, they will be swept off (see Ether 2:10). As yet there has been no nationwide repentance for past and present sins, and so the Lord continues to vex the people of the United States, seeking to bring them to repentance. In verse 42 of section 136, the Lord reminds the Saints that they are under the same obligation to keep the commandments.

Sec 137
4) Why do some children die and others live? Are those who die better off than those who remain in mortality? Elder McConkie wrote: “We may rest assured that all things are controlled and governed by Him whose spirit children we are. He knows the end from the beginning, and he provides for each of us the testings and trials which he knows we need. President Joseph Fielding Smith once told me that we must assume that the Lord knows and arranges beforehand who shall be taken in infancy and who shall remain on earth to undergo whatever tests are needed in their cases. This accords with Joseph Smith’s statement: ‘The Lord takes many away, even in infancy, that they may escape the envy of man, and the sorrows and evils of this present world; they were too pure, too lovely, to live on earth.’ (Teachings, pp. 196–97.) It is implicit in the whole scheme of things that those of us who have arrived at the years of accountability need the tests and trials to which we are subject and that our problem is to overcome the world and attain that spotless and pure state which little children already possess.” (“Salvation of Little Children,” p. 6.)

Will children who die before the years of accountability ever be tested in the way that other mortals are tested?
President Joseph Fielding Smith said: “Satan cannot tempt little children in this life, nor in the spirit world, nor after their resurrection. Little children who die before reaching the years of accountability will not be tempted.” (Doctrines of Salvation, 2:57; see also D&C 29:47; 45:58.)

What will happen to children in the Resurrection?
President Joseph F. Smith wrote: “Joseph Smith taught the doctrine that the infant child that was laid away in death would come up in the resurrection as a child; and, pointing to the mother of a lifeless child, he said to her: ‘You will have the joy, the pleasure, and satisfaction of nurturing this child, after its resurrection, until it reaches the full stature of its spirit.’ There is restitution, there is growth, there is development, after the resurrection from death. I love this truth. It speaks volumes of happiness, of joy and gratitude to my soul. Thank the Lord he has revealed these principles to us.” (Gospel Doctrine, pp. 455–56.)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Credit Cards

Of course, we'll all be a lot better off if we have no credit card debt, but for those who have struggled with it you'll probably be interested in the new credit card holder "bill of rights". Maybe I'm naive, but I'm surprised there were not even any informal rules or ethic governing credit card companies. It's too bad the government has to legislate this kind of thing. This is from an article written by money expert, Ron Lieber.
First, let’s lay out the things we know will change because of the new legislation. The bill is chock-full of new rules, which will take effect at various points in the year after President Obama signs the final legislation.

¶There are new restrictions on when card companies can increase the interest rate on balances you’ve already run up. The bill says that banks generally must wait until you’re 60 days late in making the minimum payment before applying a penalty interest rate to your existing debt.
While an earlier bill in the House of Representatives suggested less strict rules, House members have agreed to adopt the Senate version and intend to vote on it on Wednesday. On Tuesday, senators voted 90-5 in favor of the measure.

¶Card companies will have to give 45 days’ notice before raising their interest rates. There’s also a notice requirement for any significant change to a card’s terms, which may keep companies from surprising customers who have been saving their loyalty points for years with huge alterations in rewards programs.

¶Banks must send out your bill no later than 21 days before the due date. They cannot send it with, say, 14 days to go, hoping that you won’t get a check to the bank in time to avoid a late fee.

¶If the card company gets your payment by 5 p.m. on the due date, it’s on time, according to the new rules. No more of this early morning deadline nonsense, which led to late fees for payments that arrived with the afternoon mail. Also, no more late fees if the due date is a Sunday or holiday and your payment doesn’t arrive until a day later.

¶Let’s say you’re paying different interest rates on the debt on a single card — one for a cash advance, another for a balance transfer and a third for new purchases. Now, when you make a payment over the minimum balance, banks will have to apply it to the highest-interest debt first. I bet you can guess how some banks used to handle this sort of situation.

¶Banks will need your permission before allowing you the “privilege” of spending more than your credit limit and paying a fat $39 fee for that privilege. The card companies should be ashamed that they needed a law to make this “opt in” requirement a reality.

¶If you’re a student, it will become harder to get a credit card. No one under 21 can have a card unless a parent, legal guardian or spouse is the primary cardholder. Students with their own income can submit proof and ask for an exception to the co-signer requirement.
The senators, in an apparent endorsement of helicopter parenting, also require written permission from the parent, guardian or spousal co-signer for any increase in a card’s credit line. You can read all the gory details through links to the Senate bill.

¶Hate gift cards? Me, too. There will be some helpful new rules regarding those absurd dormancy fees, which punish people who let the cards sit around before using them.
Under the Senate’s rule, retailers and others that issue Visa, MasterCard, American Express or Discover gift cards or certificates will have to print explicit dormancy fee information on the card. Sellers of the cards will also have to inform the buyer of the fee. That’s a smart twist, since the gift giver can then become aware of the noxious nature of the fee — and elect to give cash or some other gift.

The bill also bans expiration dates on gift cards and certificates any sooner than five years after the card’s original issue date. And the retailer or card issuer will have to print the terms of any expiration date in capital letters in at least 10-point type. Call it the fine print rule.
It will be fascinating to see which retailer or card issuer has the nerve, after having free use of your money for five years, to tell you it will lose the money altogether if you don’t use up their gift card. I dare them to try.

So will credit card companies kill reward programs or drastically scale most of them back? Of course not.

“If you strip away the reward component of a credit card, it’s essentially a commodity,” said Rick Ferguson, editorial director at the loyalty marketing company LoyaltyOne. “The reward is what gives it its personality. It works from a branding perspective as well as a mechanism to influence customer behavior and consolidate spending on a particular card.”
That last part is crucial. People who spend a ton generate fees galore from merchants, and that money helps the card company stay in business. So you may soon see card companies giving away more goodies or lowering annual fees for people who hit certain spending thresholds each year. American Express already does this on a number of cards.
Also, keep in mind that you may have more control over what the card companies do to you than you may think.

If you don’t like the new fees and other things that banks will soon be testing as they grapple with their new economic reality, then make some noise. Send a note to me at rlieber@nytimes.com, so I can write about the latest foolishness — or consumer-friendly twist. At the very least, all of our complaints to the higher-ups at the banks may help persuade the companies to head in another direction.

Jackson's recent funny

I was talking with the nursery coordinator, who does the music in all 3 nurseries in our ward, about Jackson. Apparently they were singing I am a Child of God two weeks ago and he added in his own little twist. He has also learned a fun twist on the Happy Birthday song and tied it to
I am a Child of God. Here is the combo for you ...
I am a Child of God, cha, chi, cha
And He has sent me here, cha, chi, cha
Has given me an earthly home, cha chi, cha....
and on it continues after each phrase
To live with Him some day, cha, chi, cha
The nursery leaders were cracking up. I wonder if for the primary program they will have the nursery class go up and sing. I wonder if Jack will cha, chi, cha for everyone.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

To love

I really do love this. It reminds me of the kind of person I really do try to be.

Also, if you really would like to see a good daddy

(another one, there are many in the family) look at his other videos.

What a GOOD GUY!
His son has autism and it reminds me incredibly of my nephew, Kaleb.

Kaleb has Aspberger's autism.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Happy Birthday Ray!!

35 years young...

Check my blog for lots more of Ray

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Leslie Ann Croshaw Esparza

What can you say about a perfect oldest child? We all love you, and wish we could have a big party together today. I am sure Alex is giving you a happy, happy birthday. Just a few photos to remind everyone of the darling little girl you were and the wonderful woman that you are. XOXOXO Mom and Dad

p.s. I am sacificing myself to show the great picture of Leslie in Korea while I am standing by her looking really hot and sweaty.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

To All the Mothers

Our mothers, hand-in-hand with our fathers, taught us much. Most consequential of all that teaching, they showed us and thereby taught us faith, which opened the door and has allowed us to find and know truth. For that, we will be eternally grateful to them and to our Father in Heaven who placed us in their devoted care. We have thereby endeavored to pass that truth on to you. From our own experience, and from our subsequent observation of you, the next generation of mothers and mothers-to-be, we know that you are and will likewise, teach your little ones, our valued grandchildren, in a similar way.
It is true that the hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world (see Matt's blog post - March 21, '09.) A large majority of the acts of tyranny that plague the world would likely not happen if the tyrant would first consider, for even a moment, what his mother has taught him, and what her wishes would be. The same could be said for our own indiscretions, no matter how small. Our mothers would have us do better. We would all do well to heed their inspired examples.
Our deepest gratitude goes to each of you, our children for learning your lessons well, for selecting mates who obviously learned theirs, and for your combined diligence in passing the truth on to the progeny, whose knowledge and faith will almost certainly be tested in their generation.
Happy Mothers Day!
Mom and Dad

Six days shalt thou work, but on the seventh day thou shalt rest.

We happened to have this Sunday school lesson two weeks in a row. I guess we needed it. I asked a question of an institute instructor about the first lesson, and in his response he gave me this bit of wisdom--something I hadn't thought of in this way. I wanted to share it with all of you:

"God rested on the seventh day as a pattern for the rest of us. It is a foreshadowing of things to come. When we enter into God's rest, we enter into his glory. So, the Sabbath becomes the day when we live the way we hope eternity will be, in his glory, in his presence, doing his will. Robert Lee (I am pretty sure his middle initial is E., seriously)

Did you ever think of it that way? It makes me want to consider a little more seriously how I observe the Sabbath.

What are some of the things you do on Sundays to maintain holiness?

xoxo mom

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Awww, for the moms

Lookie what I found on lds.org. So nice.

I think it is really neat that there is a mormon page on you tube. There is so much on there that is not good, but these are always lovely.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Never Fear, 24 Fans

Dana is on my lap. Isn't she adorable. This other photo is a young one of all of us. Sorry to be slow doing this, Dana.

This is going to be a combination entry. I just read online that Jack Bauer will be back for a third season, so it looks like he will be saved somehow, by his adoring daughter, Kim. Did you ever really think he was going to die? Three episodes left. Scott and Stephanie Christensen had a baby girl, Madison (not sure of spelling) on May 5. Mother and baby are doing well. Dana and Jason got a new van. Not new, new, but new to them. Yeah! Happy day to all of you.

Love. Mom/Debby

Monday, May 4, 2009

Happy Birthday Dana!!

Happy Birthday Dana. We hope your day is great, great, great. Since Mom is at the cabin she didn't have access to pictures and these are all that I have. I was thinking about the picture of you and Jason in Mexico. You are such a cute pregnant woman! Your babies are so beautiful too!!! Have a super duper birthday!