Tania's first and foremost desire is to do the will of the Lord. That inner inclination leads her to work hard to both do good and be good. She will be embarrassed to have me post this, but it does demonstrate her character. At one point in our friendship she was concerned that she had hurt me. She was in Boston at the time and flew across the country to make sure everything was okay. I had told her it was okay, and she knew that I would never let her spend all that money to fly to Salt Lake, so she just left a voicemail on my phone and came anyway. She loves people and works very hard to create good relationships, and that often means selfless sacrifice on her part. Later, despite my protests she took another expensive plane trip to Guatemala to be a friend to me in lonely and somewhat scary circumstances.
As many of you know, Tania is very intelligent. She attended Harvard Divinity School to receive a master's degree in theological studies. Modern academic studies of religion in most non-religious institutions are hardly places that promote real faith. In fact, in many respects they do the opposite. More than one scholar has lost their faith to intellectualism in the classrooms of theological schools. In that pressured social and academic environment, Tania did not falter in her faith. She clung to it and it grew. I don't think even I fully recognize the extraordinary faithfulness that she demonstrated during that period! Later, she was accepted to complete a PhD with full financial aide to one of the leading schools in religious studies in the country. Though I offered my full support, she chose to decline the offer for another invitation - to be a wife and mother. She has truly mingled with some of the brightest and high-status minds in the field, yet she is unconcerned with that kind of thing. She went from Harvard University to Richmond, Utah, and as far as I know never looked back. She cares nothing about wealth, status, or prestige; instead focusing on striving to be a good human being in the sphere she is in.
Tania is a great wife and mother. She is selfless, compassionate, and forgiving. She is constantly asking me what she can do for me, constantly thinking about our needs, constantly voicing love and support, and constantly serving cheerfully in the sometimes monotony of home life and childcare. I cannot adequately express what strength and confidence I receive from her seemingly unconditional love. She is nothing short of a miracle in my life. I consider her to be one of the evidences of God's goodness and grace toward me.
Clara is now 15 months old! I posted about her when she turned 1 year, so I will not write at length. I will simply say that she is teaching me so much even in her infancy. She is so innocent and pure, so genuine and joyful, so trusting and determined. We are seeing more of her personality all the time. She is smart, playful, tender, and dang cute!
I offer my loving praise to my best friend and to my little girl.