Saturday, February 02, 2013

31

In anticipation of my travel plans and temple goals for the year, I've been thinking a lot about my list of temples visited. I can't match the pace of new temples being added all around the world, but I feel pretty good if I can go to one or two new-to-me ones each year. This year I hope to add San Jose Costa Rica and Monticello Utah. For my own OCD purposes, here is my updated list:

St. George Utah
Logan Utah
Manti Utah
Salt Lake
Cardston Alberta
Mesa Arizona
Los Angeles California
Oakland California
Ogden Utah
Provo Utah
Jordan River Utah
Boise Idaho
Denver Colorado
Portland Oregon
Las Vegas Nevada
San Diego California
Bountiful Utah
Mount Timpanogos Utah
Vernal Utah
Albuquerque New Mexico
Snowflake Arizona
Redlands California
Manhattan New York
Newport Beach California
Rexburg Idaho
Draper Utah
Oquirrh Mountain Utah

Reno Nevada
Columbia River Washington
Nauvoo Illinois
Brigham City UT

Thursday, March 22, 2012

And while I'm blogging,

I ought to acknowledge that today is my darling sister's birthday. It has been a joy to have her and her family so close. They are some of our favorite people in the world, and we are hopeful that soon they will live even closer.



Also, 15 years ago my life changed forever when this cute boy who was my very best friend picked me up from studying at the library and took me up Hobble Creek for a late night hike, whereat we promptly sat down next to the creek and preceded to broach the huge elephant in the everything that was the tension (the good kind) building between us and how we were falling for each other. He admitted that he didn't want to lose me, I admitted that I'd loved him since August 10, 1992, he said he wanted to marry me, I swooned, I Love Yous were exchanged, and finally, a first kiss. That was a pretty good night.


Happy birthday, Abby!

Happy engagement day, Steve!

Gymnastics

It's blurry, but it's a gem. 

Steve found this photo of his young teenaged self from a friend online, and I couldn't resist posting it here. What a doll he is and was.



Sunday, January 29, 2012

I am late for my appointment because I chose to hurry up and finish this blog post before leaving my house

Do you know what I hear a lot that makes me want to scream?

"Everything happens for a reason."

When someone says that, it is usually the most ridiculously wrong time to assert my belief that, "Nah, they don't. Maybe some things, but not everything." The sayer has likely experienced a setback or tragedy or difficult time and is trying to find solace through her faith that God is the master puppeteer, orchestrating our daily interactions, choices and consequences of every little thing that goes down on this here planet. 

When I hear an LDS person say that, I get especially frustrated. Doesn't that idea fly in the face of our doctrine? Have we been paying attention during General Conference, or haven't we?

Sure. God can and perhaps very frequently does intervene on our behalf. The power of prayer is real and miracles happen all the time. There are always opportunities for growth and learning and exercising of faith when bad things happen, but does that mean the bad thing happened because specifically so we could have that test or trial of faith or growth experience? I don't believe it. Some things happen, just because they do.

 There is (at least) one experience in my life that I can directly attribute to the Hand of the Lord and I believe that will all my heart. There are countless other times when prayers have been answered and I have have been aware that the Lord has been aware and mindful of me. But I do not subscribe to the school of thought that Everything Happens For A Reason. And I'm fairly confident I could find a giant pile of church literature to back me up on this.

 What think ye?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Heavy on the nonfiction

Sometimes the life of a hermit or recluse is really, really appealing to me. If I could do that, I would become a good reader and read everything. I used to be a great reader but I'm not anymore and it's one of the disappointments of my adulthood.

Steve and I are in a book club with good friends through his work. Attorneys and homemakers all, similar ages and interests, and stations in life. Plus a professorial couple thrown in for a little academic clout. We have hordes of children between us, all around the same age, same elementary and middle schools. They are good people.

Because I like lists, this is what we are reading this year:

The Dirty Life by Kristin Kimball
Increase In Learning by David Bednar
Ex Libris by Anne Fadiman
The Year of Living Biblically by A.J. Jacobs
Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
At Home: A Short History of Private Life by Bill Bryson
The Mormon Image In The American Mind by J.B. Haws
The Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean-Dominique Bauby
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
Poor Economics by Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo

Monday, January 09, 2012

2011

I wanted to recap 2011 with facebook status updates, but facebook thinks it's smarter than me and only shows me ones it thinks are important. Facebook is sort of lame that way.

My memory is the worst thing I have, so if something isn't written down, it didn't happen. Also, I hate writing down stuff.

Here are a few things I remember, in two minutes or less:

drove to San Francisco with the family
drove to Oregon Coast with Steve's family
van engine died en route home from Oregon
new car! that we weren't financially prepared to buy! but we made it work anyway!
controversy with the cousins
Isaac got baptized
Elliot got the Priesthood
Norah and preschool = good idea
Calvin sailed down Apple Ave. on a rolling football and didn't die
Aaron made duct tape creations
continued to love this
didn't blog
especially didn't twitter
chose to not care about pinterest
tried to learn some Chinese
started a book club


Two minutes are up. Maybe I'll remember more another time. Probably not.
For the record, I'm not nearly as negative about 2011 as the tone of this post suggests. It was pretty good.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Parenting Quandary

Luna the rat is dead. Cause of death: starvation/dehydration. Isn't that awful? It's awful. We didn't feed her. More accurately, the kids didn't feed her and no one reminded them to feed her.

The dream around these parts is that at some point my kids won't need constant reminders (nagging) to do responsible things. Does that just magically happen at some point? Our oldest is showing signs of turning that corner. He wakes up on his own in the dark, cold basement and starts getting ready for school while I yet slumber. That's a biggie.

But by and large, if I don't remind/ask/nag/tell, bad things happen: kids go to school with bad breath, school reports get turned in late if at all, Grandma's piano teaching efforts are in vain, rats die.

Steve is firmly in the low intervention parenting camp that advocates Lighten Up What's the Worst That Can Happen So They Spent Three Hours on the Computer Big Deal. He does step in to assist with homework because he knows it's important to me and I drown in it otherwise, but he does not begin to know what the assignments are without coaching.

What's the magic balance of letting children suffer the natural consequences of their actions or inactions? As a parent, do I insist they brush their teeth, or do I allow them to be utterly shunned by everyone with whom they come in contact until they learn life's lessons the hard way?