Monica (18): I’m really good at sassing people in my head. I wish I could to it in real life and still be a good person.
[Sam walks into my office late Friday afternoon.]
Sam: Hey, honey, do you want to go on a date?
Samson (16): Is is that easy?
[Driving to karate with the boys. Trying to find a radio station they like.]
Mom: How about this one?
Caleb (12): Well…not really.
Mom: What about this one?
Caleb: Mom, really I only like songs from 2010.
Mom: Samson, what was your favorite part about Saturday’s Warrior?
Samson: (15): Monica.
Mom: What was your second favorite part?
Samson: Her husband.
Caleb (12): Mom, just so you know, I’m going into my teenage years. So it’s not my fault if I’m sassy. It’s just biology.
The Provo Tabernacle was a staple of my youth. When I was a child (pre-stake-center days) our stake conferences were there. My parents took us to see the Utah Valley Symphony a gazillion times in that venue. (The first, second, and third chair had each been my violin teacher at one time or another.) My sister first soloed with a symphony there. Kim and I practiced for our stint in the children’s choir singing in the (last ever) June General Conference in the tabernacle. I sang there with the BYU A Cappella reunion choir in (I think?) 1998. I watched my nephew sing in Amahl and the Night Visitors there. I had the convocation for my BYU graduation—complete with my blow-up doughnut, having just given birth to my oldest child—in that building. And on and on.
There are hundreds of fond memories from that building floating around in my subconscious, not the least of which was sneaking away from my parents to run up and down (and up and down) the spiral staircases in the corners. In spite of it’s rather dilapidated condition, I was very sad when it burned.
Sam and I and four of our kids attended the temple open house last week. The new temple is utterly glorious. The pictures do not do it justice. [click to continue…]
Thanks to Common Core and other cultural problems—you know, like legal mandates that allow boys to use the girls’ dressing room if they feel strongly enough about it—we’ve had a massive onslaught of new homeschoolers coming down the pike. As with most experienced homeschoolers (we are finishing up our 22nd year), I am getting endless questions about how to start, where to begin, what to do. (I do homeschool consulting at the same rate as blog consulting, if you’re interested.) From personal experience I know it can seem overwhelming to think you will direct the education of your own children when you have only known the government school paradigm, as I did.
All the discussion has me distracted from my real life (where my “baby” is 12 years old) to thinking about early education and foundational philosophies. If you’re thinking about enrolling your little tyke in preschool or otherwise getting formal about schooling your little ones, please read on! [click to continue…]
The world is full of idols, athletes, entertainers, people famous for no reason at all, and people famous for all the wrong reasons. It’s easy for our kids to get lost in the glamour and glitz and to idolize people whose examples are not worthy of being emulated.
Some attempts have been made to encourage Mormon kiddos to look up to scripture heroes as their models by creating plastic figurines for Samuel the Lamanite, Nephi, etc. It’s a noble cause, but you might notice that almost every such figure (due to…you know…the dearth of women in the scriptures) is male. Even all the missionaries are male. Phhhttt. (I did find a Sariah figure, but that’s all I can see to represent the female half of the population.)
What can we do?
First, we can do is to acknowledge that no person is perfect. No person other than Christ should be our exemplar. Downplaying the hero worship of popular culture icons can be done by discussing how everyone has some talents, but that doesn’t mean we copy everything they do. We might want to learn to do a layup like Johnny Moe, but we don’t have to dress, talk, and philander like he does.
Second, we can look for those who do good in many ways and show their examples. Using examples of people who have made a positive difference, blessed others, shown Christlike love and then discussing how we can emulate them can be a great motivator. These good people come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and ages and that diversity can help our children look for good wherever they find it, not just on the court, stage, or magazine cover.
Happy New Year! And Happy 13th birthday to Mormon Momma!
If you’re looking for some motivation, a nudge, a push, a shove, or just a little incentive to start 2016 off with a bang, here are some great resources for your consideration.