Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Errand of Angles is Given to Women

There is a fancy Relief Society poster in the lobby at church that boldly proclaims, in cursive script, that "The Errand of Angles is Given to Women." Now, we all know that it is far too easy to find things at church to make fun of, so I usually refrain, but every time I pass it I can't help but laugh and try to think of some clever mathematical joke involving women and the "Errand of Angles."

I'm still drawing a blank on jokes of that variety, but I will say that after thinking it over, I'm not sure which is more intimidating: the message that women are expected to fill in for mathematicians, or that they have a mandate to act as if they were heavenly messangers. I'm leaning toward the second option as actually less intimidating, mostly because we don't know much about what angels really do with their time.

Anyway, the intimidation factor of angels and angles aside, I was thinking that this time of year can be intimidating as a woman, and especially as a mom. I know that as the person that sets the tone for the home, if I want the holiday to be special and Christ-oriented and family-oriented and fun and peaceful and my house to always be clean and smell like cinammon, and oh yes--for every family member to feel loved and remembered and get the perfect gift, that I have to be the driving force to make that happen. Yesterday I was making lists (one of my favorite activities), and ended up with three basic lists for the Christmas season: To Do, To Buy, and Traditions I Want to Have. I don't want to give away anything, (Sorry. I know blogs these days are all about giving away things.) so I thought I'd share the "Traditions I Want to Have" list.


-Put up Nissemen. (It took me one year to copy the cutouts, one year to color them, one year to buy a flesh-toned colored pencil to color their faces with so they don't look too pasty, one year to lose them in a move, another year to re-copy, re-color, and buy a laminator, (must have had a lot of energy that year) and this year I'm finally cutting them out! God willing they will make it onto my walls as well.)

-Wrap books. (Heard about this in Relief Society. You wrap 24 Christmas books and let your kids pick out one a night to unwrap and read during December. I am 15 Christmas books short of 24, so I cheated and checked them out from the library today--I've already wrapped 19 of them!)

-Magnetic Nativity. (My friend gave this to me. The kids put up a magnet piece each day.)

-Stocking for Savior. (I will try this one out this year. You know, you write stuff and put it in stocking. My kids are still pretty young, so it could be lame.)

-Paper chain. (Red and green paper chain links, each one has something about Jesus on it. "Jesus is kind." "Jesus is the Prince of Peace." etc. The kids rip one link off each day. At this age, it's all about ripping things, magnets, stickers, etc.)

-Nativity dress-up. (Sammy loved it when we re-enacted the story of Noah for Family Home Evening one night. She made me tell it every day for the next week and act it out with her. I think she would really have fun with this one, but again, there's the age thing and we only have four people.)

-Meal in Living Room. (We ate Christmas Eve dinner by candlelight at our coffee table last year. It was fun and simple.)

-Watch Nativity video Chistmas Eve while eating treats. (Also simple.)

-Go sing in Messiah. (I usually fly solo with this one and leave Austin with the kids. I'm thinking Sammy might be old enough this year. It's just hard to find a good sing-in near our home though. Last year I went to one nearby and the audience wasn't allowed to sing, we just had to listen to the choir. I left halfway through in disgust at those music hogs.)

-Put family pictures on piano. (I don't have any family pictures downstairs. Why? Because the four of us are not photogenic enough to get one good picture together. I'll just put us on seperately though.)

-Take treats to next-door neighbors. (We did this last year. I usually dread awkward stuff like that and only did it because it was our duty, but it ended up being a great evening of visiting.)

-Service. (Must do something service oriented that doesn't cost money. Babysit for people so they can do Christmas shopping? I'll think about this one.)

-Slideshow. (I thought it would be cool on Christmas to watch a slideshow of our past year as a family. Nothing fancy. I think I could make this happen.)

-Book to hang on tree. (Just a little book for us to write Christmas memories in each year. Except I know it would just be me writing unless I made people do it. And by people I mean my husband.)

That's it! Here's to a great month ahead.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

A Thousand Strange Places

Life is returning to normal...I'm decorating for the holidays, touring schools for Sammy for next year, and I just got back from my first official midwife's appointment. During which the police showed up at my house. You know. Just normal life.

However, I would be remiss if I didn't post pictures on the blog about a time when life was not so normal...a time when we sailed the wine-dark sea and walked the alleys of the East...a time when we viewed a thousand strange faces and a thousand strange places, and through it all clung to our quest for bold adventure:

Fish pedicures
and a firm knowledge of who we were and where we came from:
Formal night after a couple weeks at sea
So now, without further ado, I give you: Italy, Egypt, Israel, Turkey, Greece, and Crete!
Yes, that's me.



And back on our ship...

Austin gets bored and starts making these small towel animals...
And back home...
where Sammy calls me "Nana" for a week and Cici won't let me out of her sight...the girls have commandeered our empty suitcase and go on frequent trips. I don't plan on going anywhere for a while. These epic trips sure take it out of you.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

It's Not the End

Back in the United States! And the first order of business...the elections! I waited in line to vote for over an hour with my two kids, but at least we all got stickers! I was disappointed that Romney wasn't elected, mostly because I like change (Yes, we can!) and I was curious to see what he would actually do after all his flopping around on the issues. But let's be real: Romney was one of two uninspiring choices, not the prophesied Messiah. And in that spiritual vein, here are some fun Mormon myths to read about:


I'm not very passionate about politics, but I am proud of our country. In Egypt, the people don't support their elected leaders if they didn't vote for them--they throw rocks and burn buildings to show their disapproval. At least we haven't gotten too far past rants on Facebook.