Friday, May 28, 2010


You know the saying "When you assume something you make an ass out of you and me?"  What do you think about that?  I have been thinking a lot about people judging people lately and it seems as though every time I turn around, I am hearing discussions, lectures and complaints about why this is so wrong.  I have made a very conscious effort in my life to try and not judge people, but I know that I am not perfect.
What happens when we "Assume" a person is a certain way because of stereotypes or circumstances?  It is really easy to close your mind to the real possibilities of who this person really is.  I have two examples, of some circumstances that I have actually learned a great deal from.  I wanted to share them with you and hopefully the people that are involved in these circumstances will not be mad that I chose to do so.
#1 - A woman was at a health clinic to weigh her children.  She has two boys and the oldest is going to be 2 soon and the youngest is 8 weeks old.  While she was there, she was undressing her youngest baby and her older child disappeared.  He was trying to escape the clinic.  When she went to go get him, he came back kicking and screaming, drawing the attention of everyone in the room.  In order to contain her older child, this woman stood him on the counter next to her baby whom she was trying to change.  A health nurse came over and asked her to take her older child off of the counter.  When this woman explained that it was the only way that she could contain him, the nurse proceeded to tell her that she at least needed to sit him down.  When this woman did this, her son reacted by kicking and screaming and so he was put on the ground where he proceeded to run off again.  When it was their turn to get weighed, the woman took her older son over to the scale where there was a smiley face on the wall for him to look at.  He didn't want to look at the smiley face, but he eventually ended up getting weighed anyways.  After the weighing, another little boy who had been sitting very quietly with his family, and seeing what had been going on with this woman went over to the scale to get weighed because it was his turn.  Upon seeing this, the woman's older child started pointing at the other little boy and getting upset that he was getting weighed.  The woman reassured her son that it was the other boy's turn and she proceeded to dress her baby again.  While she was doing this, her older son went over and slapped the other little boy in the face.  The parents of the other child grabbed their child and just stared at the woman as she tried to apologize over and over again.  She was embarrassed for herself, her children and for what she knew she was being judged for.
What would you have thought?  Is she right?  Do you think she was being judged?  I KNOW she was.  I know that 8 years ago when I only had 2 little girls, I probably would have thought she was a terrible mother.  Now, however, after having 5 children and a lot more experience, I understand that all children have terrible days where they hit, scream and just have fits in the most inconvienent places.  I have learned that no child is bad ALL of the time and when you are out and about with two young children by yourself that you can always use a helping hand.  This story reminded me of how much better it is to ask a person if they need help when you see that they have one child who is out of control instead of just ASSUMING that they are a bad parent.  I have, in fact, come across very similar situations in the health clinic and I have offered to help out.  Even though people don't take you up on your offer because they don't know you, the kids usually calm right down because they are scared of the stranger.  It ends up working even without you actually helping out. 
#2 - In the church that I belong to, no one is paid to do anything to help run the services, everyone is a volunteer and the Bishop "calls" them and asks them to volunteer for certain things.  After a period of time, that person is "released" from what they have been called to do and then called to do something else.  These are called "callings" in our church.  There is a woman that I know quite well and she has been trying to get another woman who attends church with her called to organize some meetings and social gatherings for the women in her area of the church.  She is having a hard time getting this woman called because this second woman is of a race where the stereotype is that they are lazy and unreliable.  This woman is actually amazing and quite reliable, but because of the stereotype, there is a lot of hesitation with having her called to do this task because it is quite a large task.  This really hit home for me because it has made me wonder if I have ever just "ASSUMED" a person would be a certain way because of their race.  Have I ever discredited someone because of the color of their skin or "ASSUMED" that they would act a certain way because of what the stereotype is?  It is an interesting thought.  I know that I have had to make a conscious effort to erase some stereotypes that I have had in the past and to see people for who they really are!  I want my children to grow up in an era where they can see past the color of someone's skin and really see the person for who they truly are!  This reason is one of the reasons that my kids attend a spanish school.  They are surrounded by amazing latino women and children and they love them.  They have no idea that latinos can be judged based on the fact that they are latino.
I hope that my children can grow up to see past the color of someone's skin and not make quick irrational assumptions about people without really knowing them.  I hope that my children can grow up in a world that is more understanding and less critical.  I hope that they can learn to treat everyone as equals regardless of race, physical appearance, fame or circumstance.  I also hope that they can get that same respect in return.  I guess I will have to just keep working at it and not just assume that it will happen.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Did you know?

Dustin is AMAZING!!!  He knows EVERYTHING!  Here's a little tidbit that you may not know in the words of the genious himself:

"Did you know that the people in the tv can see us?  Yep.  If we can see them they can see us.  See?  Mickey Mouse just asked me a question and I helped him find Goofy."

You just can't argue with that logic!

Monday, May 17, 2010

It's Not What's On the Outside that Counts!

My Anne is 9 today.  It is her birthday and I couldn't be more proud of her.  Ever since she was a baby, people have stopped me on the street to tell me how beautiful she is.  Photographers have given me their business cards and requested that I set up appointments with them to photograph her.  She has always been a beautiful little girl, and she knows it.  However, what all of those people can't see is how beautiful my Anne is on the inside.  With Anne I have to be gentle.  There is nothing loud about her.  She is soft and gentle and just beautiful.  She looks all girl and she loves princesses, littlest pet shops and barbies.
One of the things I love about her, and that most people who look at her would be surprised to know is that Anne is VERY logical.  She has a very linear and logical mind and when she thinks, you can almost see her thought process.  It is amazing.  She is incredibly smart and she LOVES math and science.  With Anne, you just do don't things halfway, you put everything you have into it.  She wants to be a scientist when she grows up and so every book that she reads and every present that she wants has to do with becoming a future scientist.  Anne loves to learn.  Anne loves to help people.  Anne loves to be on the computer.  Anne is thoughtful.  Anne is kind.  Anne has a very big heart and looks for people who are left out and makes sure that she plays with them.  Anne loves everyone.  Anne is never mean and she never tries to hurt or bother people.
If there were more Anne's in the world, the world would be a very beautiful, logical, methodical, gentle place to live.
When I think of Anne, the word that always comes into my mind is the word "Beautiful".  She is beautiful on the outside, but she is truly beautiful on the inside too, and after all, it is what is on the inside that counts!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A Mother Never Forgets.

Being in a constant state of fogginess right now has made me appreciate a lot of things that I have taken for granted for most of my life.  I am waiting for my blood test results from my doctor to figure out what is going on with me, but until then I just have to try my best to keep on keeping on with this constant cloud of drowsiness, coldness and lack of focus over my head.  I usually have a great memory!  I can multitask like no other.  I can keep track of 5 different schedules all at the same time and not miss a thing.
But now???
Now I can't even remember to get a babysitter so that I can go to my kids' volunteer tea.  I can't even summon up enough energy to walk up or down the stairs.  I can't focus. . . . . I REALLY can't focus!  In fact, I can't even remember what it is I wanted to say about that. . . . sorry!  I'm forgetting everything!  EVERYTHING!
However, there are some things that a mother never forgets.
I didn't forget Anne's birthday party yesterday!  We had a blast!  It was a spy theme.  It was AWESOME!!
I didn't forget that today is my littlest angel's birthday!  My Robin would have been 3.  I haven't forgotten what she looked like, or the hospital room.  It is a clear to me today as it was when I was there.  I haven't forgotten how tiny her little casket was, or how we thought that she was a boy during my pregnancy and called her Bobby.
I haven't forgotten my Angel Baby.
There are some things that a Mother NEVER forgets!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My small rectangular friend

Oh my little rectangular friend. . . . . how do I love thee?
What was my life like before you?  How did I ever think up recipes on my own?  How did I ever look up phone numbers and emails?  How did I ever stay in touch on twitter and facebook
Where have you been all of my life?
My life will never be the same again!  I am now dependant upon you.  What a magical little ipod you are!  You know exactly which song to play to go with my mood.  You are my little ipod of wonder when my kids are bored at an appointment and they can watch movies on you!  You have apps for my little scientist, my big guy, my own musical pleasure, learning apps for my monkey and even a light saber.  I mean, who could have little boys and not live without a light saber. 
You have been the cause and solution of many fights between my children.  You have given me an outlet when I can't sleep at night.  You are there with your spinning recipe apps when I need some inspiration for dinner.
What did I do without you?
Oh Ipod touch.  I think I am in love!  I hope you feel the same way too ;)

Monday, May 10, 2010

In a Funk

Lately I have been in a bit of a funk.  I have felt a bit overworked and underappreciated.  It finally came to a head on Friday during a conversation on the telephone.  That was it.  That was the straw that broke the camel's back.  I was broken.
I couldn't stop crying.  I have been very much on edge emotionally for about a month now and I just couldn't take it any more.  The dam broke.  I cried until I couldn't cry any more. 
I am still trying to pick up the pieces.  I am gradually feeling better, but I will admit that I still feel really fragile.
How did this happen?
I am a strong person.  I can take a lot of crap.  I can handle just about any situation.  I have big shoulders on which to carry my burdens, so why now?
Is it because it is May???  I always have a hard time around Robin's birthday (which will be on Saturday) and on Mother's Day, but this started in April.
So I am just trying to move on.
I am just trying to put my nose to the grind and keep on keeping on.
I am trying to surround myself with fun, happy things and keep my thoughts positive.
I am trying to stay home more.
I am trying to humble myself more.
I am trying to clean more.
Will it work?  I don't know.
I just know I need to get out of this funk.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Why the heck not?

As a lot of you already know, I have gotten into the U of C program of Visual Arts with a specialization in Photography.  I am sooooo excited!  I can hardly contain myself.  My parents and siblings seem to be excited for me, however when I told some of them they responded with "But what about culinary school."  My response was "All in good time".  I still want to get the piece of paper behind me to become a Red Seal chef.  That is still what I want to be when I grow up, however I have always had a passion for photography.  I spend hundreds (maybe thousands) of dollars a year getting photos done of my kids.  I LOVE to dress my kids up and do random photo shoots of strange things.  I know that when I die I will not be able to take anything with me except for memories, and I want my children to be able to have lots of memories of their childhood.  I love looking at old photos of myself growing up and I want that same joy for my children.
So, why not?
The great thing about this program is that it will be two years long and all of the courses are in the evenings and the weekends.  Otto and I can sacrifice for 2 years.  We have done it before and we can do it again.  I have been having a hard time lately because I have come to the realization that all of my siblings are now graduating from University.
What does that make me?
I feel like a bit of a disappointment.  I know how important a University degree is for my parents and I will probably never get one.  I have a really hard time focusing on anything.  I am always doing a million things at once because I can't concentrate on one thing at a time.  I have learned (through sad experience) that if I am sitting in a classroom with 300 people and a teacher is giving a lecture that I am expected to learn from that it won't work.  I just can't do it.  I have such a hard time with it.  That makes this program PERFECT for me.  I get to attend classes in the evening and the weekends and I get to DO stuff!!!
When I was at the U of C before (when I was straight out of high school) I was in Business.  I used to dread having to take any math course.  Now, my biggest fear is going to be the "Basics of Drawing" course that I have to take.  I cannot draw to save my life!  I do love, however, that this is the class that I am the most worried about!  What a great program!  I just can't wait.
How does this help my future?
Well, doesn't all education help us?  Isn't that what learning is all about?  I mean, how can it hurt to be constantly learning about things that interest you and will help improve your life?  I don't plan on becoming a huge photographer and shooting for magazine covers and such.  I just want to do this for me.  I want to really learn the best ways to capture my precious moments.  I do think that it will eventually help my catering business because I will learn how to do commercial photography as part of my courses and then I can take pictures of my food that I create and use them to promote my company.  I will also be taking website design which will help me design my catering website so that people can come and book me online.
So that is it!
Why am I going back to school for this applied degree?
Well, why the heck not?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Aren't birthdays a funny thing?  I have always wondered why we celebrate the day that someone is born into the world.  Is it because we are celebrating the fact that the little life that has just begun has the power to change the world?  Are we celebrating the end of an era of pregnancy that the mother endured for 9 months before the baby came into the world?  What exactly is it that we are celebrating?
Yesterday was my 31st birthday and I thought about it alot. 
I thought about what were the hopes and dreams that my parents had for me when I was born? 
Who did they want me to become? 
Who did they want me to look like? 
What personality traits did they hope that I would inherit?
What aspirations did they have for me?
I just can't help but wonder if I have lived up to everything that they have hoped for me.
Am I smart enough?
Am I creative enough?
Am I responsible enough?
Have I set a good enough example for my younger siblings?
Do I work hard enough?
Am I spiritual enough?
Am I headed in the direction in life that they would want me to go?
What have I accomplished in my life?
Is it good enough for them?
Is it good enough for me?
The last question was the hardest for me to answer.  I spent the whole day thinking about my life and where I am and where I want to be.  I am currently the mother of 5 beautiful living babies and one angel baby.  I have a house and 2 vehicles.  I do not have a University degree, but I teach piano, and digital scrapbooking.  I am aspiring to receive my Red Seal for cooking so that I can have a piece of paper to back up my passion for food and catering.  There is nothing that brings me closer to God than through music.  Music is a very powerful tool in my life and in the life of my family.  I would be lost and alone without it.  I currently serve in my church as part of a presidency over the children.  I love this!  I love being around children and helping them learn.
I love to cook.
Let me write that again. . .
I LOVE to COOK!!!!
I love to watch my Abby play basketball and learn how to see the game.
I love to wake up every morning to the deep, melodic sounds of Abby's cello as she practices and to the wavering notes on the piano as Anne and Caroline learn how to play the piano.
I LOVE the mountains!
I love warm weather.
I love my family and the one thing that I have always wanted more than anything else is to feel included in my family.
When I turned 30, I had a bit of a crisis and I decided that I would try and do things that I normally wouldn't do.  Since I turned 30 I really stuck to that goal and I have experienced some AMAZING things and learned a few lessons along the way.  I have sung in an American Idol competition in Walt Disney World, run in a 10K race, coached basketball for Abby, answered "yes" to a survey, sung in a Women's Chorus which performs for Senior Citizens, gone on a trip to Mexico with just my mom and myself, endured 4 days of torture stuck in an airport in Houston, gone horseback riding in the ocean in Jamaica, climbed a waterfall, gone tubing down a river, planned a garden, taught digital scrapbooking at home parties (I hate home parties, so this was a big step for me), and more.
My goals for being 31 are to enjoy my family more and to grow closer to my husband.  I also have some goals about my education and I will post those later, once I hear more about my registration.
So, turning 31 has made me reflect on my life.  Am I where I want to be?  I think so.  Am I who my parents want me to be?  I hope so.  Where am I going?  Well, only time will tell, and I do hope that I have a lot of time left to find out.