Wednesday, 31 March 2010


Lately I feel so blessed with the friendships I have. Here are a couple examples

Yesterday Allen was to pick up Peirce from his Art Camp at 4:00. He called me at 3:55 and said he had run out of gas! ACK! I quickly though of who I knew that lived close to where he was at his art camp. I ended up calling someone from the ward we used to live in....someone I really admire and like but don't talk to very often at all except when we run into each other. I quickly explained the pickle we were in and asked if she could go pick up Peirce. "Sure!" she said. She picked him up and brought him home. I'm so grateful to have people I can call when I'm in a squeeze like that! The truth is, I have quite a long list of people I could call in if in a bind.

Today I went with a friend to visit another friend at the hospital. She has recently had surgery to remove some precancerous cells. It was so wonderful to visit with her and to hear of the miracles she's experienced. I left thinking about how blessed I am to have her in my life because whenever we visit we have conversations that leave me feeling uplifted and grateful. I felt like going to visit was giving something to her, but instead I was richly blessed.
Life is good.

Wednesday, 24 March 2010


Allen has a Californian cousin that is on a mission in Utah. It's always interesting to read his letters. His parents usually forward them to the rest of the family. This week he had some interesting experiences to share regarding another missionary in his mission:

This week has been interesting. One of the missionaries in my district went home. He came out on a mission because his girlfriend told him to. I guess that wasn't good enough. I really don't care what reason a person comes on a mission for so long as they stay. One of the main reasons I came on a mission was that it seemed a good idea at the time. Still is. Never really prayed about it if it was a right a decision.
Didn't need to. It felt right and any attempt at something else ended poorly. Several of us felt like failures though. Nothing we said could get through to him. I asked him if the church was true. He said yes. He said the spirit was telling him to stay. His parents are not members and his mom started taking the discussions while he was out here. Everything was telling him to stay and he just threw it away. I've heard several stories of people who were converted when they were older. Their patriarchal blessings said that they would have accepted the gospel years ago if the missionary who was called to teach them had just accepted the call long ago. God has back up plans but that is a lot of missed blessings.

This sure seems to happen a lot these days. I'm not sure if the whole 'raise the bar' idea is to blame (i.e. some people feel like perhaps they're not worthy enough) or if some youth are just more non-chalant about missions. I find it really disappointing. Logically I can understand some of the reasoning. No one is less of a member for having not served a mission. You can still be active, still serve in other ways, still develop your testimony. Of course you can. Not serving though, when you can and ought to, in my opinion, can be a real hindrance on your growth. My experience has been though that nothing will impact your life like a mission. It's not easy. And it's not always fun. But it certainly is life changing. I wish somehow I could express how impactful a mission is.

When I was growing up there were a few ladies I knew that had served missions. I felt like there was something different about them. They were confident while being humble. They were always fun. They knew the scriptures well. They were smart. They were people you could always count on. They weren't flakey. They weren't wimpy. They weren't whiney. I wanted to be like that! I don't know if I'm confident enough, humble enough, or really that much fun. I wish I knew the scriptures better and I'm not sure how smart I am.....but I know the experiences I had on my mission ratcheted all those things up a notch for me. I'm so glad I served. It really did change my life. I'd like to say all girls should serve. I think all girls would benefit from it. That really isn't the program though. Maybe that's why it's as unique an experience as it is. I don't know. I hope my daughter serves though. I think she'll be great!

A mission: there ain't NOTHING like it!

Tuesday, 23 March 2010

Peirce.....becoming a reader?

Peirce has always been a rules guy. I never worried about him in school because you could always count on Peirce to do what he was supposed to do. He paid careful attention to what the routines were and what the rules were and he was always right on it.

Well, until now.

Now he's become a socializer at school. We get notes from school that he has to be reminded several times to get to work, and he speaks in English too much, and other things like that. Recently we put a system in place where his teacher gives him a score between 1 and 5 each day on his behavior. He gives himself a score too. Quite often he's right on track with how his teacher thought he did. It worked for a while, but then we had to up the ante and add some incentives to it. We decided that if he gets a 2 he is banned from all forms of electronic entertainment. A 3 means the only form of electronic entertainment he can enjoy is his DS, a 4 means he can also use the computer, and if he gets a 5 he can also watch TV....and Peirce loves TV.....but he hasn't been able to watch it for weeks now.

Something strange has happened though. He rides his bike. He plays outside. He's working on a garden with Jill. And recently, he can often be caught reading! We have make him put his book away as we push him out the door to swimming. And at night I have to ask him a number of times to shut off his light and go to sleep while I get, "I'm almost finished the chapter mom!" He reads on the bus. He reads in the car. He's really learning to love reading!

But he still talks too much in school.

Oh well. So did I.

Friday, 19 March 2010

The Littlest Pirate

While Jill and Allen were listening to Olympians, Peirce and I were at Storybook Theatre getting inspired by pirates.

The play was called The Littlest Pirate. It's only about an hour long and the story is really fun. It's about a boy named Bobby who hates going to bed (of course). His grandma comes to babysit him and she falls asleep while reading him a story about pirates. He decides to go to pirate school and sneaks out the window to become a real pirate. It's a cute adventure accompanied with bad guys that are scared of bunnies and a big surprise at the end about his Grandma.
At the end of the play they give all the kids a pirate certificate and the actors all sign it. The plays are really interactive. When Bobby goes to pirate school they talk about all the things a pirate needs: they need to talk like a pirate, and look like a pirate, etc. When they talk about looking like a pirate they give paper pirate hats to all the kids.

Even though Peirce thinks he's all grown up and too cool for stuff....he really eats this up. And you know, so do I!

Olympic Bronze

Jill snuck into a fireside tonight that was for the youth in our stake. We have someone in our stake that was on the bobsled team that won a bronze medal at the Olympics. His name is Brother Bissett. There was so much about it that was so great for her:
Inspirational talks
Jill wants to go to the Olympics one day. She has lots of goals and things she wants to accomplish. She also LOVES hanging out with the youth. August is her birthday and it seems eons away to her.
I still can't believe she'll soon be 12. Truth is, it's right around the corner!

Saturday, 13 March 2010

Dear Pregnancy Loss,

Actually, Pregnancy Loss, I don't want to call you "dear" because you have hurt me so much. Pregnancy entered my life dressed as joy and anticipation and then by surprise you took away that which I looked so forward to.

For many you are cold and cruel and thorny. However, in the moments you've been in my life you were careful to make our experience as gentle as possible. For that I can thank you. You brought with you a quiet reverence for life that has touched my heart. You held open the veil for a moment to help solidify my faith that there's more to our family that what we now know. You've helped me look forward, with great anticipation, to the time that I will be surrounded by all my children. You've touched me in a way that makes me want to be kinder to all - especially to all children.

While I really don't want to invite you into my life again, I wonder if your presence was more of an assignment. I don't think yo uwanted to hurt me. I think you wanted to help me to grow, and to do more than survive, to become someone who discovers inner-strength and remembers to be a little gentler, while sharing with others what I have learned.

I think one day I may even be able to say thank you for coming into my life. Once my heart has recovered, maybe I will be able to say thank you.

Time will tell.


Friday, 12 March 2010

Angels in our family

Life has a strange way of giving us experiences to help us grow. Today I found out we are no longer having a baby. I had an ultra sound 10 day ago which raised concerns. Today the concerns were confirmed. The baby has not developed as babies normally do. There is a gestational sac, but they think the baby stopped developing after 4 weeks.

The past 10 days have been an emotional rollercoaster. Deep down inside I knew something was really wrong - but I refused to let myself go there because I wanted to use faith. I knew God could fix this. I knew he could help us have a healthy baby. But today when they told me I knew. I already knew. But I didn't want to believe it. I'm not sure why we have had to go through this. It's heartbreaking.

I'm grateful I wasn't sure of my dates - because if I was more sure of my dates I wouldn't have been sent for an early ultra sound. I'm grateful to know now. I would be 10 weeks right now.

I met Peirce at the bus today and while walking home I told him. He said, "Oh mom, that's so sad. Why does this happen so much?"

I told him I didn't know - and that it made me sad too - but that I was sure grateful to have the two children I do have. He said to me, "You don't have two you have four."

He's right.

We were going to have a baby, but instead we had an angel. Again.

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

White Tiger by Aravind Adiga

This book is about life in India. We read it for the book club I'm in at the public library. One thing I like about book clubs is they force me to read books that I might not otherwise read - and this is definitely one of those books.

The story kind of rambles. It's a story of a poor man who leaves his family and goes to the city to work as a driver. He's an entrepeneur, and honorable man, and a murderer. Quite a mix!

A lot of the story left me with a wrinkled forehead and curled up nose. Life in India is so different than here. Often he'd talk about things like they were funny, and I found myself not quite getting the humor and actually being more horrified than entertained.
This book was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. I don't get those awards. This book seemed to me to ramble and ramble and ramble. That's great writing?? I suppose he captured life in India in a way that most people have not - but, gee, he sure could ramble.
Would I recommend the book? Well, not really. I wouldn't have never kept reading it actually, if it wasn't for the book club. But I'm glad I read it...if that makes any sense.
Here's a review from The New Yorker that I read on Amazon:
In this darkly comic début novel set in India, Balram, a chauffeur, murders
his employer, justifying his crime as the act of a "social entrepreneur." In a
series of letters to the Premier of China, in anticipation of the leader’s
upcoming visit to Balram’s homeland, the chauffeur recounts his transformation
from an honest, hardworking boy growing up in "the Darkness"—those areas of
rural India where education and electricity are equally scarce, and where
villagers banter about local elections "like eunuchs discussing the Kama
Sutra"—to a determined killer. He places the blame for his rage squarely on the
avarice of the Indian élite, among whom bribes are commonplace, and who
perpetuate a system in which many are sacrificed to the whims of a few. Adiga’s
message isn’t subtle or novel, but Balram’s appealingly sardonic voice and acute
observations of the social order are both winning and unsettling. Copyright

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Missionary Zeal

My kids are missionaries. Jill was telling her friend the other day why we're called Mormons. Her friend wanted a Book of Mormon. We had the missionaries over today so they gave her a book to give to her friend. So Peirce wanted one too. Tonight I found the note he wrote to his friend that he's giving the book to. (I'd take a picture but my camera is being weird these days). His note says (spelling mistakes and all):

Dear lucy can you pleas read this book its realy spishal it mait not have complet sentinsize because its from a long time ago. Pleas give it to your perents to read when your done. Pleas read a chapter a day.

Gotta love that.