Thursday, August 28, 2008

Beauty is....

As many of you know by now, a few weeks ago Kiersten got braces. She will still need some stuff done on her mouth, but it's all good. After getting them on, she didn't want to look at them and looked at me a little teary and said " mommy, they're so UGLY!", it almost broke my heart. However, after reminding her that teeth do not the woman make and that she is truly beautiful inside and out, I started thinking about what true beauty is.

In the world's view, beautiful people are those stick thin model types with perfect hair, teeth and lose baby fat in a matter of weeks. Those people make me want to puke. There are few and far between "regular" or "plus sized" people that are considered beautiful in the eyes of the world. We look at the world's beautiful people and think, man, what I wouldn't give for her hair, butt, boobs, face, house, clothes, seemingly perfect children. I have this not so secret fascination with Katie Holmes' new hair style. However, we don't know what those people are like on the inside. I know of some truly beautiful people on the outside, that once you get to know them, they're ugly as those little Chinese Crested dogs. Their ugliness on the inside seeps out of their pores it seems and coats them on the outside to those of us that know them. I also know women that think of themselves as "regular" looking that are so beautiful on the inside, it radiates to the outside and people gravitate towards them.

After the chat with Kiersten, I really pondered about what true beauty is and I think I found just a few. You know that Coke commercial that ran during the Olympics that showed athletes receiving their gold medals, including some athletes from the Special Olympics? Those special spirits that the world may see as "different" were truly beautiful to me. A woman that goes through chemo and loses her hair but not her sense of humor is truly beautiful. A woman, though frail of body who is mighty in spirit and a testimony to the power of faith-that's true beauty. A man who pushes his father's wheelchair around on Sunday, through crowded church hallways without complaint-that's true beauty. A 12 year old girl with shiny new braces, who is funny, good hearted, and smart-that's true beauty.

What examples of true beauty have you seen lately?

Peace and love y'all!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Olympic thoughts

Every four years, the Olympics come around, I get little to no sleep and learn a great deal about obscure sports. I also get to watch from the comfyness of my own home (usually my own bed) new world records set, amazing feats of stamina or lessons in endurance. I love to watch swimming, diving, gymnastics and my new favorite, beach volleyball. Some standout moments for me that I have either seen or read about:

Holy Fireworks Batman!!! I know that China is the birthplace of fireworks, but man, that was SOOOO cool. I understand that some of them might have been digitized for the viewing audience but still.

All those little boxes that moved around had people in them!!! I was amazed and sat on my couch for a few minutes in awe.

Unless you've been under a rock the past few weeks, you've heard about Mr. Phelps. In our house, we've been stressed out and totally blown away by this young man. The relay where Jason Lezak found some fountain of speed and blow past some Frenchman for the gold medal. The race that almost killed my poor hubby was the one just a few nights ago where Phelps won by 1/100th of a second.

Dara Torres-the 41 year old mom of a 2 year old in her 5th Olympics. What most impressed me about her is her sportsmanship. A few nights ago as we were watching a relay, one of another country's team had a swimsuit issue. Ms. Torres went over to the judge, told her and then the whole race waited for this swimmer to come back out and the race continued.

One question---why do the men get to wear shorts and t-shirts but the women wear those littlish bikinis? Anyway, I'm the newest fan of beach volleyball. It moves alot faster I think than regular volleyball (what can I say-short attention span).

A story that I read today really touched me and I had heard about it from some of the YW at Stake Conference yesterday. A marathoner ended up getting hamstring issues only a few miles from where the finish line was. Instead of pulling completely out of the race, she continued on. Of course, she didn't win, but she wasn't last either, she kept going even though she was in pain and had to stop several times. This is a true example of enduring to the end.

So everyone, if you see me around and I look a little bleary and tired, now you know the reason. The kids started school today so I'll report tomorrow hopefully.

Peace and love y'all!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Let Go and Let God

This week I've been thinking a lot about my granny's favorite saying "let go and let God". As many of you know, I have a slight tendency to worry-actually if worrying was a sport at the Olympics, I would be on the podium in the gold medal spot. Years ago, when I was worrying myself sick about something, my granny told me to "let go and let God" and everything would be fine. Letting God was not a problem, letting go was a whole different thing.

I'm not only a worrier, I'm a control freak and I like things done a certain way (my way and in my time). However, I like to think that I'm getting better at doing both. I have learned that I can either worry myself into an early grave, or I can let go and let God handle it. I finally figured out that God was all knowing, all powerful, knew me and my strengths and weaknesses, even had a plan for me. He would know what I was going through and what needed to happen in my life. I, of course, needed to do my part by thinking up solutions and then taking them to the Lord because the answer to a problem wasn't just going to plop out of the sky on my head. I also figured it out that I can't control what other people do, think or feel as much as I wish I could because I'm always right :-) They have their agency as well and I have to let go and let God handle their problems or issues and if I "don't have a dog in that fight", I need to get away from the fight and let other people sort it out. Now, I'm not saying that I don't get upset about things (just ask Mike-he's privy to my rants about the injustices of the world on an almost daily basis), but I know that I can't change certain things. I can work toward a goal-giving money to certain groups that I support, paying my tithing and fast offering, vote, etc. but I can't MAKE certain things happen just because I want it. Believe me, if I could do that, everyone would have jobs, homes, world peace and enough to eat.

Also while I was thinking, some verses of scripture came to my mind that pop up when I am troubled or feel put upon or that I just can't deal with things anymore. I think about the Prophet Joseph Smith, in Liberty jail for months and in the Doctrine & Covenants (for all you non-LDS readers, it's a book of scripture written during our day dealing with modern day revelation), there are two sections that really hit home. Those are Sections 121 and 122 and here are the pertinent verses for me:

5 If thou art called to pass through tribulation; if thou art in perils among false brethren; if thou art in perils among robbers; if thou art in perils by land or by sea;
6 If thou art accused with all manner of false accusations; if thine enemies fall upon thee; if they tear thee from the society of thy father and mother and brethren and sisters; and if with a drawn sword thine enemies tear thee from the bosom of thy wife, and of thine offspring, and thine elder son, although but six years of age, shall cling to thy garments, and shall say, My father, my father, why can’t you stay with us? O, my father, what are the men going to do with you? and if then he shall be thrust from thee by the sword, and thou be dragged to prison, and thine enemies prowl around thee like wolves for the blood of the lamb;
7 And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if fierce winds become thine enemy; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.
8 The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he?
9 Therefore, hold on thy way, and the priesthood shall remain with thee; for their bounds are set, they cannot pass. Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever.

I know that my trials are puny by comparison and if he can Let Go and Let God, then so can I.

Peace and love y'all!

Friday, August 8, 2008

Words to Live By....

This morning I came in to work feeling blah and got this nifty email from Papa C (Mike's dad aka Steve). I thought I would share. Hope you all have a lovely weekend!

An unknown author wrote the following as “words to live by”. Hope you can use them or they can help in some way. If someone knows the author, let me know.

1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
4. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
9. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
10. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
11. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
12. Don't compare your life to others'. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
13. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
14. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
15. Life is too short for long pity parties. Get busy living, or get busy dying.
16. You can get through anything if you stay put in today.
17. A writer writes. If you want to be a writer, write.
18. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else. 19. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
20. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
21. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
22. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
23. No one is in charge of your happiness except you.
24. Frame every so-called disaster with these words: 'In five years, will this matter?'
25. Always choose life.
26. Forgive everyone, everything.
27. What other people think of you is none of your business.
28. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.
29. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
30. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch.
31. Believe in miracles.
32. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
33. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
34. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
35. Your children get only one childhood. Make it memorable.
36. Read the Psalms. They cover every human emotion.
37. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
38. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back.
39. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
40. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
41. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
42. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
43. The best is yet to come.
44. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
45. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
46. If you don't ask, you don't get.
47. Yield.
48. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift

Friday, August 1, 2008

Fun Fact Friday!!!!

I LOVE useless knowledge! I love to watch Jeopardy, Animal Planet, Discovery Channel and those icky forensic shows. So, today, to honor my love of goofy facts, here are a few of my favorites:

Just learned this week that the Tibetan Hot Spring Snake is the highest living snake on the planet. If you haven't guessed by it's name, it lives in hot springs in Tibet.

The sloth is the world's slowest animal. It moves so slow that moss grows on it. Also an interesting fact about sloths, they eat, sleep, mate and give birth upside down.

The peregrine falcon is the world's fastest animal. They've been clocked upwards of 170 mph.

Can you remember what happened to the 6 wives of Henry VIII? I use this little rhyme that I heard somewhere: Divorced, beheaded, died, divorced, beheaded, survived. Catherine of Aragon, Anne Boleyn, Jane Seymour, Anne of Cleves, Catherine Howard, Catherine Parr.

Wint-O-Green Lifesavers spark when you bite them.

Walt Disney was given an Oscar for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Big deal you say! However, this Oscar was special. It really had 7 "dwarfs" and an Oscar.

That's all I can remember right now. Maybe I'll do this again. Do you know of anything to add? Please let me know. I can't remember my name sometimes but all this stuff is rummaging around in my head.