The Common Mommy Denominator

I'm a Mom. I need adult conversation. I need to talk about the banalities and the excitements of life, and be understood by the masses. Most of all, I need feedback. Let's chat. You about yours, me about mine, us about ours. Let's find and discuss the Common Mommy Denominator.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

No, Really...Who's In?

So there's this Korean Bath House in Garden Grove I've been reading about (as well as reading about traditional Korean Bath Houses) and I want to try it. And I want to know who will go with me, because I think it'll be one heckuva cultural experience, and a seriously good massage/body scrub/lunch to boot.

There's a catch: It's 100% naked, 100% of the time. In other words, it'd be you, me, and a gazillon elderly Korean ladies hanging out in our birthday suits. Seriously. (If you're male, it wouldn't be you, me, and the old can't come, so don't even joke about it, 'cuz we'll all just roll our eyes.)

That, and a full day at the spa will cost you, including the tip and a tasty Korean lunch or fruit slushie or whatnot, a good $75 - $100. But considering you can't hardly even get a massage for that price anymore (BEFORE the tip), it's really not all that bad.

And for what you get, it's not much at all! (Still a splurge, I understand, and I'm gonna have to "save up" for it myself, on!) You get towels and robes and toothbrush and paste and razors and lotions and get to hang out naked, and since I don't know of any nudist colonies around here, it's a once-in-a-lifetime, people! get to use the saunas, spas, whirlpools, steam rooms, salt room, jade room, clay room, mineral room, and showers, (the salt room is quite literally hanging out coated in salt - talk about detox! - and the jade room is lying around on warm jade wrapped in blankets (a perfect nap while your body absorbs stuff) and the clay room is, well, just that, and the mineral room is where you sit in steam all coated in minerals and...well, I don't know why you'd want to coat yourself in minerals and sit in steam, but there MUST be health benefits if millions of Koreans do it! get to enjoy a FULL BODY, DIE HARD scrub that will remove EVERY TRACE of dead skin cells (not for the faint of heart or those with easily-irritated skin, I hear, but perfect for baby's bum softness!) get an hour-long oil massage combined with a hair shampooing and scalp massage...and you get to buy some yummy, tasty Korean food to feed your body after you've fed your (spirit? psyche? curiosity?) desire for uber-relaxation. I hear it's awesome.

Seriously awesome.

Except, of course, that the ladies are going to stare at you when you strip down because you're a young white/hispanic/NatAm/black/basically non-Korean girl. (Did I get everyone? Sorry if I missed you.)

Oh, COME ON! You KNOW you want to try this!!! Unless you're squeamish about the nude thing, in which case you really DON'T want to try it. Hey, that's our generation/culture for you. But try experimenting with another culture, will you? Because I REALLY want to...but I really don't want to go it alone.

So I need a volunteer with culture to experience, a bit of money to burn (you don't have to do the whole thing, which won't require as much $$$), and a willingness to hang out neck-ed.

Who's up to the challenge? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? (Love that gag...)

Because You Asked...

Okay, you didn't really ask. Kate told you at Girls' Night tonight at MexiCasa about how NASTY my cankles were when I was pregnant with Tyler, and I promised I'd post pictures. And, oh, dear heavens, she was right. Nasty. So...enjoy. And Anna...exercise! DON'T BECOME THIS!!! (By the way...first the belly, then the FEET!) (And this is, what?, a week late because I, like so many of the rest of the bloggers in the world, have been having photo-upload issues. Sorry!) (And one more thing...these photos are NOT DOCTORED in ANY WAY. Makes them all that much more scary, doesn't it?)

I Have a Blog Stalker

You know who you are. I see you popping onto my blog once - twice, three times, four times - a day looking for who-knows-what. It's always the same...the same IP address, even. The same locale. Can't get enough, huh? And you don't even know me.

I know. The intimate details of my kids' Halloween costumes, my daughter saying "Hoe-Fain" instead of airplane, my son creating his preschool art with glue and some unpopped, that's some juicy stuff. And if you were Mom2 (or Mom, sorry, didn't mean to forget you!) or one of my myriad blog-friends or hang-out buddies - or even an across-the-world-via-blog-comment-comrade, I'd understand.

But you're not.

So why stop by? Are my diaper-wipe deep thoughts really that engrossing?

Please, let me know. Because I'm really, truly curious why you keep hopping on my blog. Especially since if I walked through your neighborhood tomorrow, I wouldn't know you from Adam. (Not a reference to you, Cory!) And unless you study my photos online (which I suppose is a distinct possibility), you wouldn't know me, either. So go ahead and leave a comment, because it's not like I don't know you're there, you blog-stalker, you. After all, site meter rocks! (That WAS a reference to you, Cory!)

So, come on. Say something. We're all curious about why you're here, haunting the internet wonderings of a S-A-H-M.

Oh, and if you're not my stalker, you're welcome to comment too. :) Fun times, people, fun times!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Dang Genetics

Growing up, my eyesight was 20-15. Good stuff. If 20-20 is perfect, my eyesight was BETTER than perfect. It wasn't until I went to an eye appointment a couple years back that I learned I now "need" glasses...and those only at night for watching movies or driving, and EVEN THEN only if I want to "sharpen things up" a little. So, no biggie.

My husband? Pretty much the same story. Not only a couple years ago did he discover a need for glasses...mostly when he's working on his computer. Which is always. But that's beside the point.

So it came as just a little bit of a shock to us when Dr. Yu told us that Tyler needed to see a pediatric opthamologist. "WHAT? WHY?!" Turn out his vision ain't so keen. At all. We wondered why he's been crossing his eyes on and off the last few weeks, but when we asked him about it, he always laughed and said "I'm a space boy!" and we were never sure if he was just being 4, or if there was some sort of issue. Well, turns out there's an issue...a big one.

It's genetic, of course...just not the genes that have rooted in our individual bodies. See, Jason's brother Keith (and Wendy will attest!) wears glasses/contacts, and has since he was quite small. I remember Mom2 telling about how just after Keith got his first pair of glasses, he stopped what he was doing and immediately got down on the floor examining everything...because he could SEE! And I'm starting to think Tyler's going to be doing the same thing.

See, the pediatric opthamologist gave us a prescription...for slightly less than Tyler needs, but in the hope that with his "slightly too small," "extremely far-sighted" eyes, as he grows, the lesser prescription might help him self-correct...a little. But the truth of the matter is, Tyler will be wearing glasses or contacts every day for the rest of his life. And we're talking, "Tease me" bottle-bottom glasses that magnify his eyeballs like bug eyes, poor kid. But he's tough and he's gorgeous, so I doubt anyone will give him a hard time more than once.

Anyway, Tyler's eyes are a +7.00 in his right eye, and a +6.75 in his left. Ask Kim...she'll tell ya that that ain't good. The blessing there, though, will come when he DOES get his glasses next week (we filled the prescription today...thank heavens for vision insurance!) and can suddenly see things and detail he didn't know existed, and not even have to cross his eyes (to overcompensate for the strain focusing puts on his little eyeballs) to do it!

So in about 7 days, Tyler will have a remarkably little pair of (preferably BLUE, according to Tyler!) "easy twist" (read: nearly unbreakable) children's glasses with cute little C-shaped ear-anchors (to keep them from falling off or being lost during preschool play), and we'll post pictures as soon as we take them. In the meantime, Tyler continues to function...but boy, will he notice a difference soon! Counting down the days!

Feelin' HOT HOT HOT!

Fire, fire everywhere...and not the kind you cozy up to in your fireplace! Yes, it's true, Southern California is ON FIRE! The sun looked like a crazy red ball of flame today - that is, when you could see it! - and everyTHING and everyONE smells like an out-of-control bonfire. There are PILES of ash all over, and its falling from the one point, Tyler even pointed out the "snow" and noted it must be getting close to Christmas! (They must be teaching Santa and Snow at Christmastime in preschool, because he hasn't had snow at Christmas since he was, what?, 3 or 4 months old.) I actually took some pictures of the ugly yellow-orange smoky sky today, but I'm having trouble uploading photos, so stay tuned. (Those of you staying tuned for the pregnant ankle pictures, I'm working on it!)

So Jay and I were batting it back and forth, and we figure it's one of two things, but either way, Heavenly Father is ticked! He's sick of seeing his temples and churches surrounded by protestors, as we see it, (I'd say synagogues and mosques, too, but no one seems to be touching those...I guess it makes good sense that people who insist on political correctness are die-hard politically correct themselves, because it wouldn't look good for them to turn on people who aren't popular scapegoats!) and so now He's decided to step in.

Enter fire, fire everywhere, and here are our two thoughts: either He's keeping the protestors at home (so they can breathe without inhaling ash gasping for the breath they use to shout) so He doesn't have to watch His children ridicule His children, OR He knows that the media is covering NOT petulant children right now, but instead heroic firefighters, fire reports, and evacuation warnings.

Either way, I'll take smoke and ash any day over grumpy "CIVIL RIGHTS" protestors (I say that tongue-in-cheek, of course) sticking bigoted signs in the temple lawn.

Quick disclaimer: I'm sorry to any and all who have had to evacuate and or have lost their homes, just as I'd be if the fires weren't preventing protestation...I'm only thankful for the littlest bit of silver lining available to a member of a church facing public ridicule for encouraging their people to vote their conscience and support a cause. I don't mean to be trite or unfeeling here, so if you're about to comment and tell me how awful I am for welcoming some respite from the protestors, please know that I mean no harm and am not intending to add insult to injury. I hope those with homes in the path of the flames have the blessing of fire insurance and had the quick thinking to gather together their most precious possessions, or at least THE most precious possessions: their family members. Best of luck to them all.

But back to the 6:15 now, the smell is lessened, less ash is falling, night is coming on, and it's time for me to bathe the kids! Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Peace on Earth, Goodwill to (Wo)Men!

Katrina - my sister-in-law, for those of you who don't know her - is one of the best-dressed, best put-together women I've ever met. Ever. Hands down. (Sorry, Cory. You're fab...but here's what I mean...) I love her clothing. All of it. She's a ruddy super-model. Dressed to kill. Looks like a million bucks. And every - count them, EVERY - time (can you count an "every"?) I ask her where she got her outfit/shoes/pants/dress/blouse/skirt/top/jacket/sweater/coat (she is always so perfectly dressed that I'm constantly asking), she tells me SHE GOT IT/THEM FROM A THRIFT STORE!!!

I'm SOOOOO serious, people!

And I smile and think, "Wow...too bad that sort of thing never happens to me," and move on.

A few days ago I was browsing ebay for "lots" of kids' clothes for the munchkins when, thrilled at the pricing on ENORMOUS lots, I was getting ready to place a bid...and saw immediately before I clicked "Place a Bid" that the shipping costs exceeded the going rate for the clothing. We're talking $5 for 15 articles of clothing...and $25 for shipping here, people. Which may or may not be reasonable; they DO have to find a box, pack up the stuff, tape it up, drag it down to the post office and send it off from Timbuktu. But I digress. I thought to myself, "If I've posted something on ebay and it doesn't sell, what do I do with it?" Answer: Since I don't shop exclusively at Polo or Gymboree or TCP, I can't trade them for credit at one of those fun little consignment-type stores, so...I DONATE THEM TO GOODWILL. (Most of you have DI; I have St Vincent de Paul's, the Salvation Army, and Goodwill.) If I do that, maybe other people do that!

So the next day it was off to SVDP's (practically across the street) to look into kids' clothes. Jackpot. All clothing was on sale that day for $1 per item (!!!!!) and I spent exactly $24...for 24 articles of kids' clothing. Some of it had been washed a time or two too many (but they're kids; they play, they destroy their clothes, and they certainly don't care if the train shirt has pilling!) and a couple pieces had negligible staining, but all in all...14 NEW PANTS/TOPS for Tyler and 10 for Goo!!! I had both kids with me, of course, so hanging out to look in the adult area wasn't feasible after an hour in the kids' section, but since Tyler was with Nona and Papa last night and today, it was just me and Magoo...

...and what did I do with her? Took her to Goodwill. For 2 hours. No, I'm serious. She hid amongst the clothes, darted back and forth between the aisles, rearranged all of my credit and debit cards in my wallet, hooked (and I unhooked so she could rehook) her shopping cart seatbelt (over and over and over...) and I spent...ooooooh, here it comes!...about $175. On myself, and for me alone. (That's not entirely true...Jason benefits too.) :)

And I learned something about Anaheim...or Orange County in general. Katrina would LOVE thrift-storing here. LOVE it. Why? Because OC'ers spend WAAAAAY too much on their clothes. We're on a budget (okay, ignore the $ was a fluke, and this entry is too long already) and I can't afford to spend $89.99 for the pair of perfectly-fitting, in-perfect-condition GUESS JEANS I bought today! Nor can I afford to pay $75 (buy one, get one half-off promotion going on at Express right now) for the 2 EXPRESS BLOUSES I bought today, also in perfect condition. People, that right there is only $10 shy of the money I spent today...and what did I get that made that $175 so worth the splurge? A new wardrobe:

3 blouses (2 Express), 5 tops (Express, Banana Republic, Gap, etc), 2 LEATHER jackets!, 1 LEATHER skirt from Nordstroms!, a floor-length black formal gown, a knee-length Rampage cocktail frock, 2 pair of shoes, 3 pair of jeans (1 Lee and 1 Guess), a pair of tan cords from Chico, and a couple other things I can't remember off the top of my head. (19 items plus 2 pair shoes in all!)

I feel like I robbed a bank, people!

And all I can say is this: Cory, you're right about well-made, expensive clothing. It's worth every penny because of the quality involved. (I'm an Old Navy and Target girl usually...)

And Katrina, you're even more right...the ONLY place to get it is a THRIFT STORE!!! THANKS, LADY! (Now come visit and lets go shopping!) (Oh, no, Cory!!! I've finally turned!)

Monday, November 10, 2008

Hiccups (Hiccoughs?)

However you spell it, my uvula (don't know the spelling on that one either!) has been wiggin' out for the last little while...(Kim explained why we end up hiccing up...thanks, Kim!) and I finally realized...I know how to cure it!

In fact, I've always known I knew how to cure it, it's just that, over the last hour, I seem to have forgotten than I know how to end it.

Mommy brain at its worst, people.

So I just de-regulate my own breathing...breathe hard and quick two or three times (all through the mouth), then one long, slow breath, then a few short, faltering, repetitive inhalations, (I don't know how better to describe'd understand if you saw it!) and repeat the process at random for, oh, I don't know, 20 or 30 seconds.

Never ever fails me. Except this one time. But that doesn't count. Besides, a spoonful of sugar and a glass of water solved that case of hiccups.

Anyway, next time you get the hiccups (which, in this house, we HATE), try it! AWESOME!

Oh, hiccups are gone. :)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Baby Wipes ROCK!

Crayon off a wall? Baby wipes (plus elbow grease). Pop tart filling off upholstery? Baby wipes. Ballpoint pen off your Sunday dress? Baby wipes! Black, smelly croc shoe-guck of your little one's feet? Baby wipes!!! Stinky mess of a baby's bum? BABY WIPES, OF COURSE!!! Lipstick off a sweater? Well, thankfully I've never needed to try that - yet - but if you have, let me know if it works!

Man, these things are indispensible. I take them EVERYWHERE, and you can't imagine how often they come in handy. Messy face arriving at Grandma's house? I whip one out! Sticky hands from the after-doctor sugar-free lollipop? Another baby wipe bites the dust. And Costco and Sam's Club both have those pop-up-type containers with plastic top closures (so you don't have to depend on a stick-shut sticker that will eventually fall off and be lost leaving you with air-exposed wipes) and they come in boxes of, what? a million? for about $20. I'll tell ya, once Goo's potty-trained and I run out of wipes, I may have to head back to Costco and invest in a last-forever box, 'cause these things ROCK!

THE COOLEST THING!!! (Thanks, Cory!)

So, Cory directed me to this counter-thing for your website that allows you to track who is visiting your blog and when, and it is the coolest thing EVER! It tells you not only who - AND their IP address!!! - but where they're from, how often and exactly when they visit, how they got to your site, how long they were on it, where they went after your site, and what pages they clicked over to while on your site. It's BRILLIANT!

In the last few days alone, I've had hits from New Zealand, Korea, two opposite sides of India, Germany, Quebec, and ALL OVER the US. I can't tell you how fun it is! So, Cory? When your little PG self visits my SoCal self, I see when you came by and what you were looking at! SOOOOO fun! Since I've been tracking visitors for, oh, close to 2 weeks now, I can also see how many times (and what time of day) Mom2 has been stopping in seeking out new photos of her grandbabies (pretty often!) and I have living proof that Jewels is still alive!!! (Come on, you were wondering, weren't you?)

So, a big thank you to Cory for hooking me up, (GENIUS on SO many levels!) and if you're interested in doing it to your blog, let me know and I'll pass on the info! FUN TIMES!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Olive Garden

You know, it's not that I love their food - by any stretch - but there is just something about those breadsticks!!!...especially when you order a half-and-half of marinara and alfredo sauce to dip them. Holy cow, it doesn't matter whether you're sick and dying, grumpy and miserable, or suffering any number of ailments...those things will lift you to the heights of comfort and joy.

Comfort and joy. Ugh. Too early for Christmas.

Anyway, yum. All I can say is yum. The rest of it? Glorified Chef Boyardee. The breadsticks? Another order, please...and doubles on the sauce!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Catch Up on the Kids' Halloween

Trunk or treat was great...we only wish we could have brought the cars indoors for an inside-lighting trunk or treat. (Cars inside? Just imagine!) Anyway, here are Luke and Leia. I know they're twins, yadayada, but you have to admit, these two are a pretty cute pair of sibs! And yes, Mikayla is trying to eat the plastic...I guess she figured she'd get to the candy eventually! (She got sick of her wig after one go-around, by the way.) And just wait until I figure out how to make Tyler's light saber glow blue!!! In the meantime, I'll work on some of the others, but these are the best...and we may very well end up going to have pictures taken so we can get a good, professional-type Skywalker Family Group Shot! Stay tuned!


In case you are having difficulty translating the above, it's Goo's most constant and recent request for her own viewing pleasure:

DOH-Wah, DeeAAY-Doe, Uh BOOS TEEBee, Mommy!

Dora, Deigo, and Boots (on the) TV, Mommy!

Our digital camera (with video capacity) has no batteries at the moment, but as soon as it does, watch for it here!!! Too funny!

The Drama Continues...

Protesters like crazy at various LDS temples...the list of Yes on 8 donors being circulated (with as many of the LDS individuals and groups on it identified as possible) so that no on 8'ers can harrass members and the church...harrassment and intolerance from angry no on 8'ers in general...truly, friends, did you ever think you'd see a day where Mormons were persecuted this widely again? The church does not generally involve itself in politics, of course, EXCEPT where moral issues are concerned. Not since the extermination law was presented, however, have we been so widely abused and subjected to such bigotry.

Someone please explain to me why no on 8'ers are so eager to engage in the bigotry of which they accuse us? Why they don't act like "grown ups" and just pursue legal avenues to complain? Speaking of which, if prop 8 should never have been on the ballot, why are they only complaining about it NOW?

Sigh. I am just so done with politics, people! Moral issues? I'm there, which is why I'm discussing hate against the LDS church now...but politics? It's been a few days...aren't we done yet?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I just win stuff.

No, really, it's true. I just won something else...and it started when I was a kid.

But I digress. Cory turned me on to a site devoted to various authors (mostly authoresses, actually), one of whom is one of her most favorites, and I recently signed up for a contest that they had at Halloween to win one of a number of novels for free.

Two days later, the authoress of the book I'd won emailed to let me know I'd won "A Virgin River Christmas," by her (Robyn Carr), and she was putting it in the mail. I got it today. It just made the NY Times Bestseller list. And Robyn's interested in my opinion once I finish it. Awesome.

But that's not the first time something like this has happened.

When I was quite young, my folks had taken us to Disneyland and they had this big promotion going on stretching from the teacups to Small World with all these "fair" games. You had to pay to play them, kinda like over in CA Adventure now, but my parents didn't want to fork over the cash. I begged and begged and begged, and they tried to explain that it was akin to betting, and that I wouldn't win...we'd just be out the few bucks to play. I begged and begged some more, and they decided to teach me a lesson. They relented, handed over the cash, and I chose the ring-around-the-bottle tossing game while they sat bag smugly, waiting for me to lose.

On the first toss I ringed one of those puppies. And what was my reward? A puppy. A giant stuffed dog that was quite literally as big as I was. In fact, I had to sit by myself on the Matterhorn and belt my enormous puppy in in front of me. And because it was so huge, my dad had to carry it out of the park for me. Heehee.

But that was a fluke, right? We moved on to another game because my sister wanted a turn. It was a frog-to-the-lilypad sort of game where you bounce a hammer on a lever and a frog flies off to try to land it on a lilypad cycling through the big pool of water in the middle of the tent. My sister had a few tries, and when she got to her last try and hadn't won, she asked me to do it. And I did. It. I won. Nothing quite as spectacular as the dog, mind you, but it was a stuffed frog of considerable size, and my sister was thrilled. So much for teaching me not to gamble!

A few years back I entered a contest on a radio station in Utah to reveal my most embarrassing moment. It must have been pretty embarrassing because I won...a $100 gift certificate to a local electronics super-store. I used it to buy our first DVD player shortly after we got married.

Some time after that, Jason and I were at Thanksgiving Point for something-or-other, and I ran around the place trying to enter a contest at the last minute, which I did successfully.

Now, you see, I can feel whether or not I'm going to win things. I don't know how I know, but I know. And I wanted to win the IMAX tickets for the T-Point movie theater...but I didn't feel it. I knew I was going to win something, but it wasn't those tickets. They were the 3rd place prize. Then the 2nd place prize was given away. There was a family sitting nearby who were holding hands and crossing their fingers for 1st place, but I leaned over to Jay and said, "Too bad I'm gonna win this one...and I don't even want it." Then they announced that Jessica Bradshaw had won the first place cast iron dutch oven prize. Huh. I didn't even know what a dutch oven was until Jason introduced me to the miracle of dutch oven cooking, and we used that puppy at least a dozen times before we moved away from Utah...maybe more. We brought it here, forgot about it, and it sat on our porch during a rainstorm, rusted like crazy, and we dumped it...but that was maybe my favorite prize of all.

A few months back I entered Ana Winegar's name (anyone heard from her lately???) into a radio contest to win her and her family some Disney tickets before he shipped out again to Iraq, and they won...but so did we. We got a set of Disney tickets too for having been the ones to nominate her. We sold some of them on ebay and made a couple hundred bucks to pay for our family vacation, so we REALLY scored, and it was overall an awesome thing.

I don't know, people...maybe the heavens have been kind to me with my winning luck because most everything else goes so ridiculously badly, or maybe they've smiled on me with my luck to shut me up and keep me from whining about things going ridiculously badly. (Not that my life is going ridiculously badly...I just whine a lot.) Either way, I have a new novel to read, and I'm going to start on it soon as I finish Brisingr. Anyone else reading the new Eragon book?

Either way, I just win stuff. Not a bad talent, eh? Talent? No, what is it? Not a bad...thing. Eh. What do I know? I just win stuff.

My Finger is Fine!

A little red, kinda looks like a teensy cut, but otherwise, just fine. No pus, no major swelling...good to go. Thanks for your desperate concern. Wait, no. (I can't blame you either.) Thanks, Kim, for still being willing to be friends with me, even if I'd had my left arm amputated. That means a lot. :)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Okay, ONE MORE Quick Political Thang...

It's really, truly funny. If you need a random pick-me-up, it'll make you chuckle. (It's Obama singing and dancing, and I'm STILL chuckling.)


Today at the farmer's market - or maybe it was somewhere else, and it just didn't start hurting until then - I managed to pick up what appeared to be a splinter in the top (on the first joint) of the forefinger on my left hand. It looked kind of odd, really...rather like an uber-thin thorn, or (arachnaphobe here!) a spider leg...and itched and hurt like CRAZY, getting progressively worse during the, oh, hour or so it was in there. It was so miserable (and, of course, I do have that weird thing about stuff sticking into or out of my skin, so that compounded the problem) that I actually abandoned one of my favorite things (grocery shopping!) to head home and get that splinter out!

After soaking it in hot water (to no avail) and trying to extract it via tweezers, I went for the big guns: I sterilized a pair of nail clippers and started cutting off (tiny little) bit of my own flesh. Within moments I had exposed the (WASP PROBISCUS?!?! No, not really, but I'm still trying to think of things that stupid splinter looked like, because it didn't look like your average wood splinter!) thing in my finger and removed it with the tweezers, and it looked great...nothing in the wound, no issues, no problems. So I forgot about it.

Until a few hours ago, when that tiny little area had swollen to a huge pink lump and looked all pussy and felt all painful. No idea how it got infected, or if that THING in my finger was somehow deadly (a venomous fly's pincer???) but, MAN, did that hurt. So I set about cleaning it out...ripping off additional swollen flesh, scrubbing it down, squeezing and bleeding it out, saturating it with rubbing alcohol and finally covering it first with neosporin and then a bandaid.

It still hurts, mind you, and I'm wondering if that was enough. I guess we'll see tomorrow, right? If I miss blogging for a few days, you'll know it's because I'm lying in a hospital bed, my left arm having been amputated to stop the spread of the poison. However, if I DO blog in the next couple days and forget to say anything about my (miserable, agonizing) finger wound, you'll know it's because it's fine, I'm healed, and I've basically just forgotten. :)

In the meantime, can I get an OUCH?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

"Sarah M."

For some time now, I've been receiving some really ugly and foul comments on my blog from a woman with the above-mentioned name, all regarding prop 8. Interestingly, she's never once argued a valid point or had any sort of intelligent argument...just been incredibly hateful, which is exactly what she's accused me of being since I'm in favor of 8.

So here's the interesting test: Since Prop 8 has won, I'm interested to see if she blasts me as a bigot again "destroying the families of her gay and lesbian friends". It's been about 2 days now with no word from her (because I refuse to post or reply to her hideous comments), and I'm wondering if she's finally given up.

By the way, I'd like to make it known that I'm NOT against civil unions, which allow "partners" the opportunity to enjoy all the rights and privileges of opposite-sex couples as far as benefits, etc. (I am AGAINST same-sex couples being allowed to adopt or "create" children, but that's another matter entirely.) I think anything that encourages long-standing support and relations is a good idea, "gay" or "straight". I AM against redefining marriage, however...and voted that way, and am so thankful that it passed! The voice of the people may not prove to mean very much to liberals (particularly in the long run, when already we see them beginning court cases against Prop 8's passing not hours after the people have spoken!) but in the meantime, we took a stand, said our peace, voted our hearts, and did what we know to be right.

We were slandered and stomped on for it (check out the anti-Mormon ad that the no campaign created...some of the most obscenely bigoted crap around!), but we survived...and won.

And now that it's all over (and what a relief that is!) I will support President Obama (though I certainly did not vote for him, he will need the support of the people to fix the myriad things wrong with our nation) and get on with life...

...and leave politics to my political blog! Thank you for your patience (and SUPPORT!) in the fight for Prop 8...and stay tuned to see if Sarah is a gracious loser, or a grumpy girl. :)

One More Time...

For those who don't scroll or keep up with bunches of posts, here's the Skywalker Family! Love to all, and happy voting!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Being that it's Almost Tuesday...

GET READY TO GET OUT AND VOTE!!! (And then comment once you have!)


Does loving gays have to include accepting committed gay relationships as “marriage” and not “civil unions”? Am I required to abandon my faith in order to vote?

I have a few gay friends and love them dearly. One of them has a boyfriend, and he's a really great guy. Should he elect to enter into a civil union, I'm happy to grant him his rights as a committed partner in a relationship; commitment is a wonderful thing in that it leads to built-in support and understanding. But "holy matrimony"? Not even he expects my little Mormon self to go for that!

Did our forefathers expect us to ignore our religious beliefs in order to cast a "real" vote? Why was separation of church and state ever instituted in the first place? So that we would not be forced into a national religion, but could select the belief or our choosing, and so that the pope or any other leader of a given religion could not rule over us. Never would the writers of the Constitution ask us to separate our beliefs from our vote - to vote against our conscience out of someone else's idea of "fair" - but instead to vote according to our conscience, and by default, my conscience involves the intensity of my faith, so my vote will, too.

People, when it is you and your God and your ballot alone in that voting booth, there is one question and one question only that is pertinant...and that question is not "what is fair?" but this: WHAT WOULD JESUS DO? In fact, in all matters of life, that is the ONLY question. And He has answered it repeatedly, in my opinion...that we hate the sin, love the sinner, and stand up for what is RIGHT.

What Would Jesus Do?

I believe the answer is to vote Yes on Prop 8, and for those of you who are our family, Yes on Prop 102. (If you're going to argue another point of view on His opinions, please support it. Thanks.)


Steve Young Gives $50k to No on 8

Being that he is such a public figure, I want to know if he's had his temple recommend taken away yet.

Because You May Not Read the Comments...

Jason wrote something beautiful and important in defense of Prop 8. It follows:

According to Jeffrey Satinover, M. D., a psychiatrist and member of the Department of Politics at Princeton University, there is no more important reason to prohibit same-sex marriage than the effects it would have on children. "In every area of life, cognitive, emotional, social, developmental ... at every phase of the life cycle ... social evidence shows that there are measurable effects when children lack either a mother or a father. ... The evidence is overwhelming. Mountains of evidence, collected over decades, show that children need both mothers and fathers.

"This statement was made by Greg Quinlan, a former member of the homosexual community, who testified before the Ohio Defense of Marriage Act in November, 2003. Quinlan claimed that the physical and mental devastation caused by homosexual behavior, and the cumulative effect of that behavior "is incalculable.

"Two extensive studies published in the October 1999 issue of American Medical Association Archives of General Psychiatry confirmed the existence of a strong link between homosexuality and suicide, as well as other mental and emotional problems. Youth who identify themselves as homosexual, lesbian and bisexual are four times more likely than their peers to suffer from major depression; three times more likely to suffer anxiety disorders, four times more likely to suffer conduct disorders, six times more likely to suffer from multiple disorders and more than six times more likely to have attempted suicide.

A study by Susan Turrell entitled "A descriptive analysis of Same-Sex Relationship Violence for a Diverse Sample," and published in the Journal of Family Violence (vol 13, pp 281-293), found that relationship violence was a significant problem for homosexuals. Forty-four percent of gay men reported having experienced violence in their relationship; 13 percent reported sexual violence and 83 percent reported emotional abuse.

According to science, there are hundreds of nuances about men and women that even newborn infants can readily distinguish and that make a difference in the way the child develops. Yet their voice isn't considered in this great debate.

Society's compelling interest is to ensure not only the mere propagation of the species but humankind's well-being too, which is the whole purpose of heterosexual marriage. Heterosexual marriage is a societal structure and without it, society crumbles. And yet this is precisely what the courts have done. And they're doing it without any impact studies, and have ingored the voice of the people.

Yes on Prop 8.

Thanks, Jason!!!!!!

Please Note

The two most recent posts are actually from a few days ago, but unfortunately, some No on 8'er found my blog and used it as a forum for personal attacks and inappropriate language, so I've had to do two things: delete the original posts to abolish the untoward comments and repost them, and then change my blog so that all comments will be required to be approved by me before they are posted.

I apologize for the inconveniece...I for one love to see my comment pop up on my friends' blogs immediately...but I will not tolerate foul language or accusations of bigotry due to my exercising my first amendment right. If "Sarah" wishes to repeat her comments - appropriately - I will be happy to allow them in the comment area for discussion, and the same applies to anyone who disagrees with my point of view, but please remember to keep your comments family-friendly and respectful.

Thanks, everyone! And thank heavens this is all almost overwith! Great to see so many of you at the Prop 8 door hanger and sign posting activity this morning!!!

YES ON PROP 8!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Unfair and Wrong

All the No on 8 ads are getting to me...not swaying my vote, of course, but kinda pissing me off.

Here's the thing about "fair": Life isn't fair. It will never BE fair. It isn't fair to bad people, it isn't fair to good people, it isn't fair to religious people or atheists or blacks or whites or the poor or the just isn't fair. It's nice to strive for fairness, but there are ALWAYS extenuating circumstances, so what is "fair" to one person certainly isn't to another. Was it "fair" for 4 judges to overturn the will of the people? Was it "right" when the majority had stated their desires for their state?

And the very word "unfair" sounds to me like a the word used by a tantruming 5 year-old. "That's not fair, Mommy!" Shut up, kid, and deal with it like we all do.

So it's "not fair" that I don't want to use the word marriage - a definition I believe to be "God-sanctioned union" - to describe a bastardization of that union? Then I'm being unfair, and I'm totally okay with that. I'm entitled to my view, and whether or not Prop 8 passes, (pardon me for sounding like San Francisco's mayor!) I'm never going to think of homosexuals as "married" to one another, "like it or not."So that makes me a bigot, right? The idea that I'm refusing to recognize the "holy" matrimony of two people based on their sexual preference? Because argue it as you like, but I sincerely believe that that is what homosexuality is: a preference. But we'll get to that. You see, I don't care about the color of a person's skin. But I do think that just because someone wants something doesn't always mean - particularly for the sake of the rest of society - that they should get it. Gays want me to call them "married." That's what they WANT. It's not like their civil rights are threatened and opportunity are there!...and I'm not trying to remove either based on the color of their skin or their sex. I'm not even removing opportunity based on their sexually-driven desire to unite with another person...again, civil union!

And I know a number of gays, trans-gendered individuals, but I'm sure someday I'll know a few of those, too. They're great people, and I love them, and I accept their companions as their chosen companions...But I can HATE THE SIN and LOVE THE SINNER. Hating a sin is not bigoted. Which brings me to "wrong." All the no ads claim it's wrong to "do this" to gays. No, people, what is WRONG is the SIN of homosexuality. I know no one wants to throw this out there because it's too much of a far-right idea, but according to scripture, according to the church (and many many other churches, Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and so on!) and according to Jesus Christ, homosexuality is SIN. It is a sin against nature and a sin against God.We are all tempted by different things. My grandfather was tempted by ruination. Some are nymphomanics. Some are tempted by homosexuality. It is when we allow ourselves to indulge in those things by which we are tempted that we commit sin and perpetuate addiction to that sin. Don't drink. But I'm tempted. So I drink. And I like it, so I drink some more. And I am an alcoholic living under the influence of alcohol, and I SIN.

At some point every homosexual on the earth decided to give it a try. To kiss their first same-sex person. To form an emotional AND sexual attachment to someone of their own gender. It is not experiencing the temptation to commit homosexuality to is sinful, and those kinds of preferences and desires do not make them bad people, just as those who crave booze or drugs or porn or any number of sinful items make those people bad. It is giving in that is the sin.

And sinners are not, by definition, bad people. Those who struggle with homosexuality are not bad people. Instead, they are tempted by something that doesn't tempt me. But rather than fight it, they yield, "come out," and suddenly define themselves by who they want to sleep with.I am a religious individual. I view homosexuality as wrong - as sinful - and I have heard a considerable amount of talk lately stating that those who REALLY "love Jesus" and "believe on His name" wouldn't vote away a gay's "right" to marry. If a Christian is really a Christian, they would "love their neighbor." Christ defended an adulterous from death by stoning. He loved her, but he did not excuse her behavior. In fact, rather than vote to make adultery legal to prevent her from the possibility of being stoned in the future (or to prevent other individuals so-tempted and who gave in to that temptation from being stoned), he told her to go and to sin no more. His admonition was one of love, faith, and hope that she would make a better choice.

If Christ were here, would he vote yes or no on prop 8? You, of course, may argue it as you like, and he is NOT here with us ( yet...) to vote in this election...but I believe his servants on the earth - President Monson and the 12 - have told us how he would vote. They have admonished us to fight and, Lord willing, prevail in this cause.And even if the church had nothing to say about this MORAL issue, I believe it is safe to say that the Savior of the world would have fought tooth and nail to prevent something that is a sin before God and nature from becoming even more tolerated...or being embraced, as is the case here. He would have embraced those individuals living lives that indulged in homosexuality, but not have embraced their sins. Quite the opposite. While loving the sinner, he'd have spoken out boldly against the sin, overturned the money-changers' tables, as it were.

And I, as one of his (horribly inadequate but very determined) disciples, can do no less.

It Happened to Me!

I'm not sure exactly WHEN it happened, mind you, but I was on my way to the car this morning after my workout with little miss Mikayla, and TWO of the three YES on 8 stickers on my car were missing...RIPPED OFF the car, in fact! And WE'RE the intolerant ones?!?!?!

I had one next to my gas cap, one on the back bumper, and one on the right side of the car in about the same place as the gas cap sticker...Now I have one on the right side of the car.

I have not, however, been dissuaded from expressing myself! Thanks to Maureen Christensen, who gave me a small STACK of Yes on 8 bumper stickers, I have one on my stroller (which we took to Disney the other day...aaaaaaah, the irony!), one on my oversized wallet that I take with me everywhere, and TWO MORE waiting in the wings to replace those that are missing from my car!!!

How cool is that that I just happen to have only TWO remaining, and I need just TWO MORE to get my car back "up to speed".

YES ON PROP 8!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Skywalker Family Halloween!

I haven't fixed the lighting in any of the other photos yet (but not to worry...I will!), but in the meantime, here's the Skywalkers!

By the way, anyone wondering about the change in the blog? If so, I haven't been able to post pictures for the last couple of weeks, so I went through, saved my old entries (for journaling purposes) to my hard drive, and am starting from scratch...I deleted the whole blog and redid it. If anything is missing, it'll be up shortly, and I'll go ahead and let the blog start from my Nov. 1 posts. If you want any of the older posts (ie. the family photos!) let me know and I'll email them! Love to all! Thanks for your patience!!!