Saturday, May 31, 2014

The Gray Area of Heartache

I come here tonight as a broken piece of a puzzle. I come here to let you know that trials don't just magically disappear. They just don't.

I used to look around at a room full of people and peg which trials should be dealt with progressively and which ones would just be easy to get over. I used to judge based on the trials I had been through---eating disorder, rocky relationship with my family, fake friendships, bad decisions, loneliness, judgment from church members---and feel like I knew so much about the world. Because I had been through so much. (Ha!)

I used to think that I was so very mature for my age. I believed in my capabilities. I believed in my uniqueness. I loved it when people would compliment me on my choices. I thrived on praise.

But I never fully felt like I was enough. Praise would keep me going for weeks, sometimes months, but it wasn't something that stuck. Because I didn't believe in myself as a whole person. I believed in bits and pieces but I didn't fully trust myself to make decisions that were smart and worthy.

I married a man who didn't recognize all of the potential inside of me. Although that isn't my battle, it felt like my battle. It felt like a lifetime of disappointments all leading up to that particular day on August 24th, 2013. I felt like that was my grand failure moment. His choices caused me to second guess decisions I had made for the past seven years of my life.

My brain sometimes reels with the things I could've done differently. But that does nothing for me.

I guess tonight, I just come here to tell you that I am no longer a judge. I can look at a room full of people and I can understand why their trials are still causing them pain. Just getting over it isn't as easy as it seems to be from the outside looking in. Life will throw you on the ground and stomp on you and it's ok to lay there for a while. It's ok to stare into the sky and cry out and yell or scream. It's ok to punch your pillow and to not be ok with the things that are happening. It's scary to feel like you are not in control of the things happening in your life. It is just downright scary.

You aren't alone in this world. I have felt so many moments of loneliness in my life. One of my most reoccuring trials has been loneliness for one reason or another. It's something I've dealt with a lot. I thrive on the company and support from others. And when it isn't present, I don't always deal with it well. Satan tries to prove to me how lonely I am right now and it's hard to shut him out. I haven't been a very good friend to some of the most important people in my life because I've been struggling all month. I'm sure I've coined this before but this has seemed to be the hardest month so far. It has been a grueling path full of ups and downs. I need to just stop convincing myself it can't get harder---because apparently, it can!

Nine months later, I'm not better. Actually, there are still things I'm learning to recognize as triggers and painful heartaches. There are still things that surprise me throughout this journey that bring me back to square one. I am in the process of learning how to be a single me and quite frankly, I'm exhausted.

When you've been through a traumatic event, you almost instantly realize how uncertain life can be. You can see why controlling people are on the fritz when their lives make sudden changes. It makes you feel crazy and scared and you do everything you can to control the things in your life that are actually in your control.
You kinda just go crazy---minus the "kinda".

I've learned a lot on this journey but so many things, I have yet to learn. I know there are reasons but I also know these things happened because of the decisions of imperfect human beings. This isn't something God placed in my lap. This happened because we have free agency.

I pray for those of you who feel alone tonight. I pray for those of you who feel heartache and pain and are feeling hopeless. I have faith that life gets better. I have faith that God doesn't ever abandon us.

You can do this because you are strong.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

You Would Never Know

I'm going to try really hard to be more open with you today because for some reason, I get the feeling that someone needs it. Maybe that someone is me, maybe that someone is you...

Everyone has a story. Everyone has a background and a childhood and unique experiences.
No two stories are exactly alike.

It is so easy to judge. It is so easy to look a person up and down and think we know everything we need to know about them to make perfect assumptions about their life.

Have you ever seen the kid at the restaurant that is so extremely obnoxious that you wonder why the heck their parents brought them out in public? Did you find yourself judging this child's parents? Did you find yourself judging the child? If you knew this child's story, would you feel differently about this situation? What if this child was autistic? What if this child was being bullied at school and was insecure? What if this child's parents were going through a divorce?

You would never know, would you? And yet, a lot of times, we still judge.

When I was first faced with the prospect of divorce, one of my main worries was judgment. I felt like I had this neon sign flashing on me at all times that said, "I am divorced" or "I am proving the statistic".

I failed. I failed so badly at something that I should've succeeded at.
I blamed myself for marrying way too young. I blamed myself for ignoring red flags. And I was extremely scared for how I would be perceived as a divorced mother of 2.

A month or so ago, I found out some pretty devastating news about my marriage---news that would rock anyone's world. It was during this time that I started struggling even more and wondering how in the hell I was going to get past this. I worried about what other's would think if they knew the truth. Would this create a paradigm shift for my story? Because certainly this caused me to feel like the victim all over again. He lied. He made horrible decisions. He left because he chose other things over me. I was really angry.

A huge part of me wanted to shout from the rooftops what was going on because I have already been faced with ridicule from others for my divorce. I have already experienced the judgment and I have had people place the blame solely on me for my failed marriage. I thought, "If only they knew..." and I wanted them to. I wanted them to see my side. I wanted them to understand.

But I was worried they would judge---not necessarily judge me but maybe judge him? Or maybe judge the situation unfairly? I was just so worried about judgment.

And I'm really freaking sick of worrying about judgment.

I am so sick of  giving "judgment" so much credibility in my life.

So today, I am going to level with you a little bit. I am here to tell you that although I am not perfect, I know I couldn't have saved my marriage on my own. I am here to tell you that if you are feeling alone right now, I have two perfectly good ears to hear your story. I want you to know that the world cannot determine how we perceive our story---we are the only ones who get to decide.

I look at my story and a lot of the time, I get discouraged and think, "Well my story sucks." but so many beautiful things are a part of my story. My story has forced me to utilize my New Years resolution of bravery. My story has given me the strength to fight so many evils in our world. My story has granted me opportunities to meet some of the most amazing people I've ever been privileged to be around.

Although so many parts of my story come with heartbreak and betrayal, my story is worth it.

*I've thought a lot about switching over to a new blog for our family because there are a lot of posts on here that are really painful for me and I feel like I need a fresh start. I haven't quite decided what I'm going to do or how I'm going to do this but if it happens, you will be the first---or second---to know.

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Her 6th Birthday

 Petey turned 6 yesterday.
Yes, you read that right...SIX! I can hardly believe that my baby girl graduated from kindergarten and just continues to get older. I keep telling her to slow down.

Yesterday, her dad spent most of the day with her so I got to see her for her class party (The most awesome part about having your birthday on the last day of school is that they have a party for you---or at least that what it feels like.) and then we went out to dinner before her dress rehearsal for dance.
 She loved eating at Joe's Farm Grill (free birthday food!). And that face, oh my goodness THAT FACE. She has quite the little personality and I love her so much.
 She really looks so much older already. I know---impossible, right? I am just getting used to the fact that it has been six years since I became a mother. This girl is my life! I love her so much!

I love Petey's attitude. She is such a helper. She is a very selfless 6 year old and loves making other people happy.

Petey is emotional. She is very dramatic and although this gets hard for me to keep my patience sometimes, I wouldn't change it because this girl feels. She feels the good and the bad and I love that she is sensitive.

Since today was Petey's last dance recital for the year, I have been thinking back to this time last year, when she was anxiously awaiting try outs to see if she could make the dance team. I remember those days like they were yesterday and now she has finished a whole year and learned SO much!
 Petey has a gorgeous smile. I love seeing the twinkle in her blue eyes when she is really happy about something. I love seeing her giggle when she plays jokes on her brother or I. She is a pretty funny kid.
Petey is a little princess. She loves to do girly things. She loves getting her nails done, wearing lip gloss, and PINK. She loves Hello Kitty, Minnie Mouse, Tinkerbell, and My Little Pony. Right now, her favorite movie is Teen Beach Movie. We watch it once a day... {don't judge...}

Petey loves to tumble. She is always working on new tricks and every time the tv is on and I walk in the room, she is in some contortionist position. She almost never stops moving.

Petey is still an eater. My goodness, she is always hungry! She eats the most out of anyone in our house and it cracks me up.

Petey is on the verge of reading fluently. She still has to sound things out but it's a lot faster than it used to be. She can figure out almot any word she looks at.

Petey loves chewing gum! Seriously. She asks for gum all of the time! And she will chew it for hours if I don't make her spit it out.

I love my six year old so much. I can't imagine life without Petey in it. She keeps me going when I'm ready to quit. She is my helper and my buddy. I'm so glad she is on summer break because I love having her around.

Happy birthday, baby girl!!!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Kindergarten Graduation

 It was touch and go there for a minute but she did it!!! She graduated from Kindergarten!
(I hope you sense my was never actually touch and go...she did amazing this year!)
Kindergarten graduation was adorable and I am so grateful for Petey's teacher! She has really been helpful when I've not been able to be the best mom to my little girl.
Going through a divorce the year your oldest kiddo starts kindergarten was tough on all of us and Mrs. Maynard was incredibly patient when we've missed homework or other things. She really has been such a blessing for our family this year.
I cannot believe this means my girl is on her way to FIRST GRADE!!!
***The medal she is wearing in those pictures is because she got Principal's Pride or Honor Roll on every report card (Never got lower than a B and some of the report cards, she got all A's).

I love you, Petey!!!!!

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Hard, Happy, Selfish, Angry, Faithful, Grumpy, Beautiful

Today is a hard day to explain.

I've had many low days---a lot of them in the past 2 weeks.
I didn't think it would be possible to pull through. Two weeks ago, I looked at my future and it didn't look bright.
I couldn't handle these new truths. I couldn't handle the reality that I'm learning has been the past 6 years of my life. I just couldn't do it.

Too painful. Too hard. Too real.

But three days ago, I hit a breaking point. I realized I am not this girl! I'm not the girl who breaks down in church on Mother's Day because she is so grumpy about her current life. I am not the girl who is inconsiderate of others' feelings because I'm so busy wrapped up in my own sad world. I am not the girl who acts selfishly instead of serving others.
I'm just not.
I'm not saying I'm perfect but I've always found joy in helping others and it's always been something that I love to do.

I had a wake up call that snapped me out of this hatred that has started to fester in my heart. I am not going to give in to Satan! I am not going to abandon my faith and my kind-hearted nature (Are you laughing about that last part? I swear, I try to have a kind heart.).

Monday, I fought. I fought so well that I wondered if this would just be easy.
But Tuesday was harder. Tuesday took a little bit more out of me when I fought---but fight, I did.
And today has been one of the best days I've had in a LONG time. Because today, I don't question my faith in God and I don't question my heart. There are too many explanations that made up today being a great day and I won't go into them.

But I am grateful; grateful for a day of peace, grateful for hope, and grateful for the people in my life. I know I talk about "the people in my life" often. The funny thing is, they aren't always the same people. Heavenly Father knows who I need when I need them and someone always seems to be there who can help me through whatever crap I'm going through.

I cannot deny God's hand in any of this. I just cannot.

After such a wonderful day, I signed onto the computer and was staring at images of my Petey from her recent birthday photoshoot and I just couldn't help but be amazed that I've been a mother for almost six years now.
Through all of the trials and all of the heartbreak, I know I am where I need to be right now. Being a mother is the most important thing in my life and I often am in awe that my Heavenly Father gave me THESE kids---because although they aren't perfect, they are perfect for me.

I love life today. I wasn't sure if I would ever fully feel that way again. I can guarantee you I will still struggle but tonight, I am overwhelmed with how much I love my life---my current life.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day 2014

Mother's Day 2014: I was so very much looking forward to this day because I had visions of what a single mother's day would look like. I'd have the attitude equipped to be a patient, loving, and kind mother today. I'd be grateful to be serving my two children because they are the ones who made me a mother in the first place. I'd be strong enough to handle not having a husband who spoiled me on this day.

But the thing is, the minute I got to church, I was reminded of my last mother's day and this triggered a lot of hurt feelings in me. Last year on mother's day, I begged and prayed and begged some more for my husband to come to church---maybe even just to sacrament meeting---to help with our kids. He proposed that they stay home from church with him because that was his idea of helping but I wouldn't allow it. I decided I'd rather go alone with them than have them stay home. It was a hard day. And I've had a lot of hard mother's days in my life. It just hasn't really ever been my favorite.

So I wanted today to be different. I wanted to celebrate the three of us and what motherhood means to our family.

If you're wondering, it didn't go at all how I planned. I lost my patience about three minutes into sacrament meeting. I walked out early because heaven forbid I cry in front of a room full of people (I'm not a public crier). My emotions were all over the place. But why? I wanted to reign it all back in and start over because I wanted to feel like a good mom.

But I realized something from this morning. I realized just how hard I am on myself for these days that don't go perfectly. So I tried really hard to think about the things I do that are good. I wanted to praise myself and write out a list of why I'm a good mother (which was actually a challenge I was supposed to do last month in my Power of Moms group).
So here you go:
  • I am really good at being in tune to my childrens' feelings. When my children are sad or angry, I try to focus on what the problem is and helping them realize it so they can work through it.
  • I love playing with my kids---except board games. I love playing hide-and-seek or tag or just jumping on my bed and feeling carefree with them.
  • I have such a big soft spot for my children and I love bragging when they accomplish new things, big or small. I am their biggest advocate and cheerleader.
  • I am good at capturing moments with my kids. I love taking their pictures and they love seeing their pictures. I'm obsessed with how cute my children are.
  • I would do anything to give my children a good life.
It's really hard to think of the things I do as a mother that are good. I have a hard time seeing my own accomplishments but I am so grateful that my Heavenly Father is patient with me when I fall short and that He sees how much potential I have as a mother.
My life would not be complete without these two. I would do anything for them, even if that means not getting a break on mother's day. Honestly, I get enough breaks from them and I'm glad this day is all about our whole family. I love being their mother. {And seriously, Spidey's face is killing me. That boy. I love him so incredibly much.}

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

We Could've Done This

I used to blog with tons of pictures and hardly any words---funny how that changes when you feel the need to process and write because you have SO MUCH to get out. People tell me I'm "so good at blogging" but the thing is, without blogging, I feel like I'd go crazy.
This is my space. It is the place I share what I am going through, what my family is going through, and where we are. I tell you things I don't always like telling people in person because talking about the hard in person is awkward and guess who is the world's most emotionally closed off individual? THIS GIRL!
Ask me to be funny and I'll do it. Ask me to open up to you and I probably won't do it. Because I've been taught through life experience that trusting individuals is hard and scary and my emotions are really vulnerable and messy.

I've been burned to the core by a man who should be in my house right now, laying next to me on the couch, watching our favorite shows. I have a hard time watching The Big Bang Theory or Scrubs because those were our shows. Those are things we should currently be doing together. And yet, he is there and I am here. I have a hard time with this even though I'm going to be ok. I have a hard time wrapping my head around the things that went wrong because I am trying to convince myself that although there are always things I can be working on to be a better person, I couldn't have made him stay. I couldn't have changed the decisions he was making for years prior in our marriage. I couldn't have made myself more appealing to him to keep him here.
But ask me if I really believe that. Ask me if I really believe I could've done things differently. Ask me if I blame myself for the things that were essentially out of my control---because I do. I'm just trying really hard to get to a point where I don't.

I know he occasionally reads this and I know his family members read this but I'm so sick and tired of not being more real with how I feel. Because the truth is, he made choices. He made choices that essentially ruined a huge part of my life and his own life---and I say that because I wholeheartedly believe this could've been great and I 3000% believe we would've been a family for eternity.

If we would've been damned from the beginning, I think I'd feel a little bit better about all of this but we weren't. We could've done this. We could have done this!

And it sucks to feel so out of control and to be so angry at a world that I still long to find the good in. I want so badly to see through rose-colored glasses once again. I long to see others as my Heavenly Father sees them, instead of looking around and seeing the heartache and pain that is so deeply embedded into the world around me.

It gets better, right? I will once again believe in humanity, right? I sure hope so because I want to. So badly, I want to.

In the meantime, I'll be over here doing what I normally do, dreaming of the day when I am capable of more. Because someday, I will do more and I will change the world---or not---but I'll try.

Bravery at it's finest, my friends. I can do hard things.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Little Me

I go back to the pictures of Little Me and I want to tell her to run! I want to tell her that it gets worse, that people are not to be trusted, that life is rough as hell.

Because tonight, that is how I feel.
Her smile was real. She didn't know what life was going to give her. She was chubby-cheeked, curly-haired, and invincible.

Oh how I wish chubby cheeks were cute at my age.

Trust is such a hard thing, my friends. Trust feels like blindly walking through a room full of scorpions. You can get stung at every turn, with every choice. But maybe you won't. Maybe you'll walk past every scorpion, dodge every sting. It's a gamble every time because we are only in control of ourselves. Anyone can let us down, anyone can lie.

Bad analogy? Sorry, my brain has been going a mile a minute for the past week.

I often wish I were that little girl. I wish I could be her with the knowledge that I have. I know that isn't the way life works but I'm kind of burnt out with big decisions and being a grown up. Navigating through this adult world is harder than I ever imagined it would be.

I want to trust life again. I want to trust people again. I want to look around a room full of people and see mostly good. But I don't. I'm afraid of fully living because letting go and giving my all to people is scary.

Anyone can leave me.

Trials open your eyes to reality and the reality is that life is imperfect and messy and scary.

It's hard for me to feel so negative because this doesn't feel like the real me. But I've been told to just let myself feel what I'm feeling instead of keeping it all inside of me so that's what I'm trying to do.

I'm trying to be real without being sad on here all of the time. I'm happy sometimes. I'm doing well sometimes. But other times, this is so hard. Other times, I struggle to keep my head above water.

Today's good news? It's finals week and I decided against taking any summer classes so I'm almost done for the next 3.5 months!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Understanding Sexual Addiction

I wrote my last essay for English on a topic that can be really hard for people to talk about. I wanted to share it with all of you because these things are real. I've seen them affect families and change people's lives forever.
I'm not quite sure why I'm so NERVOUS to post this. It actually isn't because I am uncomfortable talking about this because I'm not. I guess I just hope that you'll read what I've written with an open heart and decide what this means in your life; for yourself, for your children, and for your homes.

Understanding Sexual Addiction

Sexual addiction is a problem in society that has become more rampant with the start of the internet in the 1990’s.  Due to the amount of pornographic images on the internet that are so easily accessible, more and more men and women are finding themselves addicted to pornography. There was a reported 1.3 million pornographic websites in 2003, 13,588 hardcore pornographic titles released in 2005, and there are more than 20,000 images of child pornography posted online every week. It is also estimated that over 70% of men from 18 to 34 visit a pornographic site in a typical month.( Sexual addiction is defined as “a compulsive pattern of sexual behavior that arises from distorted thinking; sexual behavior that interferes with personal relationships, work, or other responsibilities; and often sex with multiple partners who are seen as objects to be used rather than people.”(Davidson)
It seems that most people either wholeheartedly believe in the diagnosis of sexual addiction or they want to disprove it. Because sexual addiction is a fairly recent diagnosis that still has some researchers questioning it’s title, it is difficult to bring awareness to this topic that is so detrimental to our society and yet, awareness is the key in helping to fight the pornography industry. Marriages are being torn apart by sexual addiction due to the nature of this addiction and what it does to relationships. Betrayal trauma for the wives and husbands of sex addicts can cause lifelong trust and self-worth issues. In 2 out of 3 failed marriages, the internet was a key factor and 47% percent of families said pornography is a problem in their home.(
            The topic of sexual addiction can be extremely uncomfortable. A lot of us were taught from a very young age that intimacy should be a private thing between two consenting partners and this often creates the illusion that any and all sexual talk is off limits or uncomfortable. In and outside of religion, these topics can create discomfort for one or both parties involved and often times, it just seems easier to dust the problems under the rug. This idea creates a really big problem when it comes to the awareness and help for sexual addicts. A person who views pornography and becomes addicted can become immune to pornographic images and seek out other ways to satisfy their sexual misbehavior in numerous cases. An addiction to pornography creates a virtual depiction of something that cannot be recreated in real life and therefore undermines a physical relationship with an actual human being. Relationship problems are usually at the top of the list when it comes to this issue but other problems can arise that can be extremely harmful to the sex addict and/or other individuals. Many sexual addicts seek out prostitutes or other forms of illegal things to satisfy their addictive craving.
            The average age a person is first introduced to pornography is approximately 11 years old and 9 out of 10 children between the ages of 8 and 16 have been exposed to pornography on the internet.( Because of the nature of a child, often times children who view pornography are likely to have a difficult time forming relationships with other people in their lives. The escape to the pornographic world on the internet can seem safe and very exciting but it causes so much harm to the brains of young children. "Never before in the history of telecommunications media in the United States has so much indecent (and obscene) material been so easily accessible by so many minors in so many American homes with so few restrictions."( Also detrimental to the ages of children first being exposed to pornography are the dangers listed above. Children are likely to want more and more excitement from their addiction and may turn to illegal forms of sexual encounters to provide what they think they are missing out on.
            The significance of sexual addiction in our world today revolves around multiple topics including the divorce rate, child molestation, rape, and even incest. A person looking from the outside may wonder why someone would ever think of doing something so horrible to a child or another person but the addict makes their behavior justified because their brain isn’t sending the right signals for them to process their choice well enough before they act impulsively and make a choice they could regret for the rest of their life. Risk-taking is something that so often goes hand in hand with addiction because of the person’s inability to see the consequences laid out for the choices they are about to make. “Risk-taking is the act of engaging in a behavior that entails some probability of negative consequences, such as physical injury, social rejection, legal trouble, or financial loss.”(Boyer and Byrnes)
            Sexual addiction has been prevalent in our society for numerous years but the internet has caused this addiction to become harmful in many lives. Back before the internet was available, a sex addict was more likely to have multiple affairs and would have to seek outside of the home to cause harm to the marriage but the internet has made it so that marriages, families, and the individual can be harmed in the comfort of their own homes. With the rate of children viewing pornography growing, it is imperative that we keep this topic open for discussion with our children, with our parents, and in our schools and homes. Pornography and sexual addiction are very serious and should be talked about the same way we would talk to a teenager who was abusing alcohol or drugs. Sexual addiction tears families apart and ruins lives. It is a problem in over 70% of people’s lives and it needs more attention in the media and among our individual groups of people. We need to start thinking about the effects it will have on our relationships if we openly talk about this versus the effects it will have on relationships if sexual addiction becomes a problem. We need more awareness and less shame for this addiction because it is real, it is painful, and it is detrimental. “Since the causes of sexual addiction are not clear, there is no definitive form of prevention. Recognizing the problem and getting early treatment for stressors can help prevent behaviors from becoming a full-blown sexual addiction.”(Davidson)

Boyer, T. W., & Byrnes, J. P. (2011). Risk-Taking. In R. J. R. Levesque (Ed.), Encyclopedia of

Adolescence (Vol. 4, pp. 2394-2399). New York: Springer. Retrieved from

Davidson, T. (2012). Sexual Addiction. In K. Key (Ed.), The Gale Encyclopedia of Mental

Health (3rd ed., Vol. 2, pp. 1397-1399). Detroit: Gale. Retrieved from

Online Safety for Parents. (n.d.). Free Internet Filtering and Parental Control Software.

Retrieved May 1, 2014, from

You guys, this is SCARY and REAL! Our children need to be taught and we need to take a stand against this awful things happening in our world. Please because I love you, become more aware of what is going on within your own homes and TALK to your children about these things.
And if you have a problem or are the other person in a relationship with this problem and you feel comfortable contacting me for support, feel free to do so. We are fighters and we can FIGHT this new drug.

I've listed some resources to help you if you or someone you love struggles with sex/pornography addiction. Please don't be ashamed and please get help. There is hope and healing available and you can do this! (This list was made by a friend. Although I can't technically credit her for this, I did not pull all of this information together. Thank you, friend!)

Anti-Pornography Resources:
Understanding Pornography’s Effects:
Gary Wilson’s TED Talk “The Great Porn Addiction”  

LDS Addiction Recovery Program
LDS Overcoming Pornography-
LDS Recovery and Healing Resources
Sexaholics Anonymous (SA) 12-Step Program
SA Life Line-
Fight the New Drug-
Rowboat and Marbles-
The Togetherness Project-

Find a Sponsor for the LDS Addiction Recovery Program:

Therapy Programs:
Addo Recovery-

Understanding Pornography and Sexual Addiction  S.A. LifeLine
Love You, Hate the Porn by Mark Chamberlain and Geoff Steurer
Confronting Pornography by Mark Chamberlain
He Restoreth My Soul by Donald Hilton  
From Heartache to Healing by Colleen and Philip Harrison
Clean Hands, Pure Heart by Philip Harrison
Treating Pornography Addiction: The Essential Tools for Recovery  by Kevin Skinner
Don’t Call It Love and Out of the Shadows by Patrick Carnes

Blogs and Other Resources:
Strengthening Recovery Through Strengthening Marriage---6 hour CD by Dr.Kevin Skinner and Greg Steurer available at