Friday, April 26, 2013

Audrey Turns Six!

Yet again, I have managed to keep my eldest child alive and well for another year. I don't know why I'm so impressed with this accomplishment, but I really am. Every year I'm astounded that I have been reasonably successful for a WHOLE year.

This year was fairly easy. She got to have her dad home for her birthday, which was almost present enough. But, add her My Little Pony obsession into the mix and you have Birthday Gold.

We asked her what kind of cake she wanted for her birthday and she asked for Strawberry Short Cake. I did it the way my mom always did when we were growing up. A slice of angel food cake, a pile of sweetened strawberries and a dollop of whipped topping. Delish!

We got the colored flame candles for fun. They didn't work as well as the box appeared, but that's okay.

We got a candid picture of Cami when she wasn't looking. Henry sports his new mohawk while he chows down.

Eden is looking startled. Pretty much every time she looks at Uncle Ben since he came back from his seven month training escapade in the Army.

The bird purse from Nanny and Grandfather was a favorite. She was quick to store some of her favorite things in it. (I.E. My Little Ponies)

A Tinkerbell card from Grandpa T and Grandma Linda came with cash, something every child wants but usually has no idea what to do with... ;)

Princess Celestia. This was opened right away, and likewise almost right way, a pony shoe was "lost" and had to be found by Mom.

Okay, we splurged and got her a playset: Princess Cadence and Shining Armor in their Wedding Castle. She's so invested in the My Little Pony franchise, we figured it would be worth it. What we didn't take into account was the roughly 45 minutes of adult assembly it took. Worth it? Yes. The bonus is that Henry finally has a boy pony toy to play with.

She also got some clothes from Grammy and Papa, which she has already put to use.

Next, we need to teach her about Thank You cards and put her new-found writing skills to use. :)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

In Which Zimbio Struggles to Categorize my Blogs

I Google my blogs occasionally, just to see what keywords bring them up.

One of my most recent blogs gave me the opportunity to use just a few keywords to be certain to pull it up. Of course, they aren't keywords that most people would put into a search engine.

I mean, who is going to put "David Tennant Metaphor Savior" into a search engine? Besides me, of course.

The odd thing was that it didn't bring up a link to my blog, but to Zimbio. Eh?

So, I clicked and found that I have several articles on Zimbio...

After my initial amazement and a fleeting thought of "Does this mean I'm published?", I actually looked at the blogs that caught Zimbio's attention.

Then I looked at the categories they fall into.

Then I laughed.

They list them in reverse date order, most recent first. So, my David Tennant blog came up first. That one was reasonably categorized. Category: David Tennant. Think of all the David Tennant fans that went to that article hoping for some news or something brilliant and went, "What??" Haha!

The second one was my Rio Tinto Center - U of U Natural History Museum blog. Can you say "dinosaurs"? Zimbio Category: Rio Tinto Stadium... um. Not quite, Zimbio. I'm pretty sure dinosaurs and soccer players have nothing in common...

Number three was The Cheese Factor and Neuroticism which humorously deals with my inability to eat out of food bags with less than a cup of food left in them. Zimbio categorized this little peek into my cracked sanity with Recipes... Yep. If you ever want to know the recipe for being neurotic about food, Zimbio has the right article for you!

On to number four article which was entitled Brand New Adventure. This sweet nugget of a blog is about my attempts to make preschool fun for both myself and my daughter. We worked on themes instead of plain old worksheets. The theme for this blog? Strawberries. The category Zimbio picked? Recipes. Okay, so I talked about food a lot in this blog, but there is nary a recipe in the whole thing.

The fifth "article" was a blog discussing the unkind remarks that Stephen King made about Stephenie Meyer. It was categorized under Stephenie Meyer, so Zimbio did okay on that one, like they did the David Tennant blog. This one is short, but most like an opinion article. So, I don't feel especially embarrassed about that one.

I can't say the same for number six. My Viva la Vida blog is merely lauding the song by Coldplay as my favorite at the time. I said a few things about the song and then proceeded to put all the lyrics down. That's it. The whole blog. Of course, I didn't write it in the hopes of launching a writing career. Zimbo put it in the Coldplay category, which is appropriate, but, again, fans who find that article will see it for the waste of space that it is in that setting.

The last was my Capers blog. This blog still makes me laugh. It's about my discovery of what capers are, what they taste like and my opinions about them. Since the running theme about my food blogs is that Zimbio thinks they are recipes remains constant, there it was, categorized in Recipes. Well, maybe some foody will find it and be mildly amused at my first capers experience. Who knows?

If you are interested, here is the link to my list of Zimbio articles. You can also look at my profile.. All of which were "auto-generated"... I think A.I. is still a long way off.

My guess is that most of my "articles" on Zimbio go largely unnoticed. I'm okay with that. But, Zimbio must have an awful lot of articles that have nothing to do with the categories they are placed in.

It sure doesn't give me any confidence in searching through their archives to find something useful.

Especially recipes.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Elder Holland's Sports Metaphors Fall on my Convoluted Metaphorical Ears

This picture has been going around Facebook for the last few days as General Conference was imminent. It makes me wonder how aware Elder Holland is of his Meme popularity. I found this one while I was surfing for his quotes:


Back to the original picture and its quote.

When I first read it, I thought to myself, "Wow! He's got it right!"

Then I read it again and thought to myself, "Hmm... I know what team I'm on."

In fact, I do know the team I want to play for, I'm just one of those unfortunate players who is perpetually confused on the field.

You know those TV shows and movies in the 80's where some unfortunate, young wanna-be sports star finally gets on the team, only to score points for the opposing team? Yeah, that's me.

My jersey is right... I just keep getting the goals mixed up.

To make matters worse, the other team keeps sending their own members to our side, wearing our jerseys, leading us to believe that we can safely pass the ball to them or expect to be protected by them. It soon becomes clear that they are not only scoring points for the other side, but they keep knocking us down every chance they get and, at every turn, confuse us into scoring for the wrong side as well. To top it all off, there are other people playing the game that keep switching sides, wearing jerseys that don't represent either side and keep laying down on the field in an attempt to not play at all. 

Cheating runs rampant and the referees either don't see it, or treat it as part of the game and do nothing. In fact, the people dressed as referees are often playing for one side or the other and ejecting people for imaginary reasons. There IS a rule book, but most players dismiss it as archaic or outright garbage. As a result, there are numerous fake rule books adding to the confusion. 

There are two or more scoreboards. The real one is small and simple, almost unnoticeable, keeping track of the game-play score. The other scoreboard(s) track how attractive each team looks in their jerseys, how much fun they look like they're having, which one have the nicest houses and cars and how good they are at attracting attention to their side for reasons other than playing the game.

The sports announcers and commentators rarely report the plays, but instead concentrate on the drama of ongoing friendships and romances amongst the players.

Imagine being a spectator at that game... unfortunately, none of us are spectators. We're all playing at the same time, making the game vast, confusing and complex.

I don't say all this as an excuse for any of my behavior or mistakes. I only illustrate the intense difficulty in playing this game that is both simple and complex at the same time.

If we can recognize and read the real rule book, we have all we need to make sure we're not just playing for the correct side, but actually scoring. Hopefully, we can resist the distractions and deception of the opposition, and learn to ignore those things that are portrayed as important but hold no value in playing the game.

I suppose I over-analyzed Elder Holland's quote, but it did make me think about something that is important. It also made me realize that I need to play closer attention to this game of life and make sure I'm no longer confused about my role.


Thursday, April 4, 2013

How David Tennant became a Metaphor for the Savior and Clean Underwear means more than avoiding Embarrassment

Funny how when you want a dream to lead you somewhere, you end up with those weird, don't-actually-mean-anything dreams...

But when you aren't looking for a dream with a point, one sneaks up on you. Sortof like when I stopped looking to get married, I almost literally bumped into Ben.


Without going into detail, the elements of my dream last night included giant ants spewing out of a sideways tornado, my search for clean underwear and the entrance of David Tennant who, in true Doctor Who style, was leaping around trying to save us all from impending doom.

Whilst explaining this to my dear husband, it occurred to me that there really was something going on subconsciously in this bizarre realm. It came as I voiced my own interpretation of the oddity of my experience:

"Danger without being scared and hero worship without being in love."

At first I thought it sounded like a tag line or a title for something. Then I realized that it was poignant for another reason.

Stay with me here... the reason my dream was so weird is because truth must come to me in odd ways. That's the only way to get me to sit up and take notice. Most of my story ideas come from a kernel of whimsical and disturbing strangeness.

Just as an example, as I write this, I'm chair-dancing to Lady Gaga while formulating how I will write out my eternal-truth inspiration. Okay, that might have been a bit too much information.

Don't try to understand. Just let it flow around you.

You still with me?

The events in my dream were filled with danger and I was well aware of it. We were able to get rid of the ants on our own, but I had a sense that they were just the beginning. I did take issue with how we destroyed them since it would just as easily kill us all in the attempt and probably already was. We could handle giant ants reasonably well, but what was coming next would prove to be too difficult. I never saw the approaching enemy, but the urgency was tangible.

So, when David Tennant showed up, it had to be because what was coming could only be handled by someone built to protect us. A Savior, if you will. All I knew was that I had to stay with him. It was vital that I follow him wherever he went, no matter how fast he moved. I knew I would be safe if I did.

It wasn't until I woke up that I realized how odd it was that I wasn't smitten with him in my dream. You know how it can be in dreams. Here comes the hero and you are automatically in love with him. It wasn't like that for me. I was confident that he would protect us all and that I had to do my best to keep up with him. I wasn't sure if I'd even be able to help him, but I would hang on and survive the ride.

So... putting it together, what did I finally decide? As long as I hang on to my heroes and do my best to keep up with them, the horrific danger will mean nothing. I'm safe as long as I follow close in His footsteps.

What's that you say? What about the underwear? Ah, I see you didn't let that slip by.

Honestly, I think it might go back to that old mothering adage. Always wear clean underwear.
But, seriously, if what is most intimate to us is clean and pure, we're ready for the arrival of our hero. Our Savior.

There you have it. A glimpse into the convoluted workings of my mind.

Come back next time for another surreal moment with Yours Truly.


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