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


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.