Lots has happened since the last time I posted anything, but what I've felt over the past month and a half or so is gratitude. The holidays have been so wonderful, I've had great opportunities to be with my family and friends. We've eaten together, laughed together and cried together. This holiday season has been a little different since it'll be the "last" with my family for a while. Since Im the oldest Hoopes child, this will be the start of a new dynamic our family hasn't yet experienced. We're learning that its not very easy to let go of the people closest to you, but we've also learned that its not really letting go. Its a happy change, because we're sacrificing for a righteous purpose. Our family is growing in the gospel and going in the direction the Lord would have us go. We may be separating in distance but we're still all one in purpose! This holiday season I've been thankful for perspective and new adventures! I've been thankful for the blessing of family and friends and all the support they've been to me. Im thankful for this new year and the opportunity it has given all of us to set goals and live a better life than we did the year before. Im thankful for the new people I've grown close to in 2013, and for the memories I'll have with them and many others in 2014. Im thankful for the opportunity i have to serve the Lord in a special way this year and for all the people that have supported me along the way. I know the Lord lives and loves us. I know we can carry the spirit of Christmas we've experienced recently throughout the whole year and strive to grow closer to the Savior as we pray and read the scriptures. I know Thomas S. Monson is the living prophet. I know the gospel has been restored to this earth through Joseph Smith and that as we live the gospel we will find true happiness.