Monday, April 23, 2012

"To be always firm must be to be often obstinate. When properly to relax is the trial of judgment."

- Jane Austen, "Northanger Abbey"

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Mom's the Word

Recently, my daughter learned how to get my attention. It started at dinner as an innocent game: "Mom, Mom, Mooooom!", followed by a giggle when I turned and looked at her. This was a game that lasted all dinner long. It got our whole table laughing.
Well, the pattern has been learned, and now I can expect to hear my name in any variety of ways, innumerable times a day until she is acknowledged. There's: "Mom", or "Mmmom", or "Moooom", or Mommm", and the ever urgent "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy!" This is something that could be found annoying, but it's not.
Because, several months ago I was watching a home video of my daughter as an infant. As I videotaped her newest trick, my son was overheard in the background calling, "Mom?" And right then, I heard my son's voice in a new way. I heard the sweetness and innocence, instead of the neediness that can sometimes be so exhausting in the moment. And I thought to myself, that little voice will one day be grown and gone, and my background noise will no longer be little people calling for their mom. And in an instant, I realized that as repetitive as my name can become, it is truly the sweetest sound in the world. 
I love to be a mom- their mom. I I belong to them, and they belong to me. They need me, and I can help them.
And I need them.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Family History

Between finding old photos at my Grandma's house, a General Conference talk, a Relief Society goal, a Stake goal, and two T.V. shows, I have really been feeling a push for doing family history work. I have not yet delved into researching and finding deceased ancestors, but I have dabbled in organzing information from resources that are living (I figure my posterity will thank me for saving them the headache). It's a venture that has waxed and waned with time, as I have found that once I get going on a project, it can be all-consuming.

If you are having trouble getting excited about family history work (and its relevance in your life) here are two shows that will get you excited:

And if you have enthusiasm, but need direction:
  • "That Happened to You?" is an article from the August, 2003 Ensign that gives great questions for interviewing living relatives.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Recent Rants

I don't feel like my blog has been very topical lately, so here are two of my recent rants concerning women and our country ("topical" is being used loosely, as both subjects are fairly old news):

First, and most recently, is a comment made by Democratic strategist Hilary Rosen about Ann Romney in which she questions Romney's input on economics by stating, "she never worked a day in her life."
My Rant: My complaint has nothing to do with the working mom v. stay-at-home mom argument. My complaint is about the insinuation that stay-at-home moms are not intelligent and have no valuable insight on the economy. If you are living on one paycheck, and working to stretch your husband's paycheck for bills, grocery shopping, clothes shopping, etc. then you know firsthand how healthy (or unhealthy) the economy is. It doesn't take employment to understand that. Does a woman that works at McDonald's have more credible input on the economy than a homemaker, by virtue of being employed? To me, this just shows a true condescension that exists in viewing women who choose to be stay-at-home moms as uninformed and unintelligent with nothing valuable to offer.
It brings to mind the comment made by Hillary Clinton in March 1992, "You know, I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas, but what I decided to do was to fulfill my profession..."

The second, is inspired by my loose following of the Sandra Fluke controversy several weeks ago. Fluke is a Georgetown University law school student (a Catholic institution) who testified before House Democrats in support of an insurance mandate that covered birth control. She argued that even institutions with moral objections to contraception should be required to give coverage, stating that the cost of contraception can be an economic hardship on students.
My Rant: First, Biology:101: Sex is a choice that has a consequence- the possible result of pregnancy. When women start demanding that the government has a responsibility to help them avoid this risk, they are shifting the focus from the accountability of their choices to demanding that they be provided the means to maintain a certain lifestyle. It's as if they are victims of their reproductive powers and somehow the government owes them prevention, simply because they have female parts. If you can't afford cable, then you don't buy cable. If you can't afford The Pill- and you don't want to become pregnant- perhaps you shouldn't be sexually active (or use cheaper contraception methods). Nor should institutions that morally oppose contraception be forced to provide it.
I am aware of certain health conditions in women (unrelated to family planning) that require the treatment of birth control. This is not the issue at hand, although it has been pulled into the argument. The center of this argument is contraception- intentional prevention of contraception and pregnancy.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Thomas Kinkade

As many know, Thomas Kinkade, "The Painter of Light", passed away over the weekend. Many are familiar with his work, as it has been wildly popular and wildly marketed. Because of this success, it may come as a surprise to some to learn that his work has not been well received by the art establishment who, simply put, view it as unoriginal kitsch with a sketchy printing/sales approach. (As a sidenote, the discussion of whether or not his work is considered 'kitsch' is best not held in an actual Thomas Kinkade gallery, which I may or may not be guilty of). Every person has their own taste, which I respect, but as a matter of education, I have linked to a few articles to help explain exactly why his work was so controversial:

"Kinkade: Artist Drew Many Fans, Few Critical Raves" (Associated Press)
"Thomas Kinkade's Polarizing Legacy" (The Washington Post)
"Art for Everybody" by Susan Orlean (The New Yorker)

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

A Hairy Concern

In speaking of the resurrection that will one day come to all men because of Christ's resurrection, Alma 40:23 states:

"The soul shall be restored to the body, and the body to the soul; yea, and every limb and joint shall be restored to its body; yea, even a hair of the head shall not be lost; but all things shall be restored to their proper and perfect frame."

I have heard many balding men quote this scripture and express excitement in the knowledge that they will again one day have a thick head of hair restored to them. And I have felt happy for them.
And then one day I was thinking... as a person who regularly shaves, tweezes, and sometimes waxes... what does this mean for me? Resurrection morning might not be a pretty sight.