Zest for Life—Tristan Desforges of Raleigh, North Carolina


Eight-year-old Tristan Desforges loves his family and the gospel very much. He is an active, fun-loving boy who does everything with great enthusiasm.

If you were to visit Tristan on a Sunday morning, you might find him scrambling eggs, making toast, and pouring orange juice. Tristan takes great pleasure in making breakfast for his parents, Xavier and Jeni, and sisters, Emilee (13) and Caroline (11).

He also helps the family by caring for their dog, Paco, and their two cats, Dawn and Sarah. And it is his responsibility to feed frozen mice to his pet corn snake, Simon!

Once when Simon escaped from his cage, Tristan couldn’t find him anywhere in the house. Tristan decided to pray and ask Heavenly Father for help. After his prayer, he felt impressed to look in the pipe of an old bathtub. And that’s just where he found the snake. Everyone in the family was grateful to have the snake back in his cage!

Tristan also takes an active role in helping with the household chores. He vacuums, washes windows, sweeps, cleans his room, and takes out the trash. His mother says that he excels at keeping the bathroom clean. A favorite chore, however, is working in the garden. After studying about plants in school, he planted vegetables and flowers in the backyard. He enjoys weeding, watering, and watching the plants grow.

When the Desforges family holds family home evening, Tristan always enjoys the activities. One of his favorites is bicycling to the park for a picnic. At the park he also likes to play on the playground and feed the ducks at the pond. Indoors, Tristan has fun playing board games with his sisters and eating an often-requested dessert—ice-cream sundaes covered with chocolate syrup and topped with whipped cream.

Tristan recalls a family home evening lesson that he and his mom prepared on President Kimball as being a very good lesson. “I like to learn about the prophets of the Church. After the lesson we had one of my favorite desserts—raspberry cheesecake!” he declares.

Even though Tristan sometimes teases his sisters too much, he is helpful, kind, and fun-loving to them. He takes delight in telling them jokes. For example: “How does a butcher introduce his wife? Meet Pattie!” He also likes to entertain the family by playing the recorder, harmonica, or pennywhistle. He wants to learn to play the guitar too.

In Primary, Tristan enthusiastically sings “Book of Mormon Stories,” and likes to participate in the activities in sharing time. He is also active in Scouting and has earned his Bobcat and Wolf badges.

Jumping on the trampoline, throwing balls at rubber turkeys, turning cartwheels, and playing on the big sponge doughnut are activities he has fun doing at school. He also enjoys playing upper defense on a soccer team. In the classroom, he finds studying science, especially plants, very interesting.

Being a member of the Church, he knows it is important to set a good example at school. He tries to be kind, to not use bad language, and to be a missionary. He invited his friend David to church and gave him a Book of Mormon. When David came to church on Easter Sunday with his family, Tristan was excited to see them there. He also invited David and two other friends to his baptism.

Tristan is not only doing missionary work now, he is also preparing for his future mission by saving his money, paying his tithing, and keeping the commandments. He knows the importance of missionary work and shares these words: “I want to teach the world the blessings of the gospel and its commandments and share my testimony. I know this Church is true. I know Jesus is the Savior, and He loves me.”

Tristan’s zest for life helps him serve his family as well as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints with great enthusiasm.

[photos] Photographs by Julie Wardell and Janet Thomas

[photos] Tristan prepares breakfast for his family (left). Tristan is repotting one of the plants he grew from a seed (right).

[photos] Tristan keeps busy tending his garden and helping his sisters care for the family pets.