Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Anime and Aspergirl ....and Then There's Me

A day in the life of my aspie and me:

[Necessary background knowledge - there are two Anime conventions coming up, one in February called "Katsucon" and one in July, called "Otakon".   These are for those who love and live for Japanese animation, called Anime.   Most convention attendees of all ages dress up in their favorite characters.  Many spends hundreds of dollars buying and/or hours creating the perfect costume.  This is a land full of Aspergers people, with pure fantasy and acceptance of who they are, regardless of obsession, nerdiness, or social abilities.  This is a land that L walked into in July and we have yet to retrieve her.  She had such a great time when she attended that she has spent nearly every day since then planning for the next one.  Part of her costume was already made for Halloween and for Katsucon.  However, a new one must be made for Otakon....]

Now, with that background, we march into today's dialogue:

L - Can I order my ocarina and Legend of Zelda costume things now?  I've saved up money for part of it.
me - we need to talk about your budget first
L -(after 5 minutes) ok, so we talked about it.  Can I order my stuff now?
me - no, we aren't finished yet.
(Later, after reality set in about the high costs of things desired for the Otakon costume)
L- I decided to make the rest of my costume.  Will you help me?
me - absolutely, but the convention isn't until July, so I'm not working on it with you until January.
L - ok, so here is what I need.....
me - ok but can we wait until January to plan it?
L - sure, but let me describe the sword and the sword sheath for you.....
me - what are you going to cook for dinner tonight?
L - Japanese Stir Fry.   Please buy the Japanese vegetable package at the store.
me - what books did you get at the library?
L - two manga books and two books on how to speak Japanese.
me - what are you drawing?
L - my comic strip where I am with Link in the Zelda world (Link is a character from Legend of Zelda, the one she is creating the costume for.).
me - oh ok.....
This is the first "Link" costume.  She made the whole thing except for the ears and wig.  I only helped a little. 
L - I'm going to look on Ebay to see if I can find that ocarina for a cheaper price.  Can I do that now?   OH, here are a couple of websites where it is cheaper.  OH, the Ebay bidding starts at 7 bucks.  Can I bid now?
me - you have to leave for work in 10 minutes.
L - ok, I'll do it later.
L- (half way to work...) OH NO - I forgot my name tag and apron!
me - I'll bail you out one time.  I'll go get them for you.
L - thank you!  Wow - I don't know how I forgot that.  I never forget them.
me - well, you were obsessing over the ocarina this morning, so I'm thinking that your apron and tag weren't on your mind.
L - ugh.  you're probably right.  I'm so sorry.
me - it's ok.  It will all work out.
me - doesn't Kathryn have an Ocarina that you can borrow?
L - she has two but neither is the right one.
me - what difference does it make?  It's a costume - who will know?
L - anyone who plays the game will know.
me -well, if I played the game, I would not know that the ocarina you had with your costume was the right one, nor would I care.
L - well, these people care.  I care.  They will notice, believe me.
me - yea - I believe you.  I should know better than to even question the importance of details....
Halloween - with Kathryn, who has the wrong Ocarina....
me - (after  words and frustrations regarding budgeting and make up....) what are you upset about?
L - I am just trying to make you happy.
me - why do you think you have to make me happy?
L - because I never do anything right.   What, was I too "me" when we talked about the budget?
me - what do you mean "too me"?
L - too aspie?
me - not at all.  I thought you handled the discussion perfectly.  Sometimes I just need a break after talking about money - ask Dad.  It's true.
L - oh ok.  So it's not my fault that you got mad?
me - I wasn't mad.
L - I thought you were mad.
me - no, I just needed a break.
L - oh, well did you need a break because of me?'
me  - NO, I wasn't angry.  I just needed a break.  But this is starting to make me a little angry.
me - it's ok.  Everything is fine.  You handled the money situation very well.
L - oh, ok.  Thanks.  So can we order that stuff now?
I adore my aspie girl, or "aspergirl".   She is a delight most of the time.  She has had some extremely hard knocks in her young life.  I often find her challenges to be very unfair, and it takes a lot of faith on her part and ours to keep walking one step at a time through them.  However, I am convinced that once she gets through the teen years and gets some college under her belt, she will find that her "quirks" will take her on a road of great satisfaction and success.

She just might have to WAIT a little while.....

Post Script - Aspergirl approved this message - after correcting my spelling and part of the story.  

Monday, November 22, 2010

Ch Ch Ch Changes

The holiday season is upon us.  By this time during most years, I have usually ordered family photos and Christmas cards.  Hubby has usually developed his inventive Christmas letter.  We generally know what our plans will be and who will be giving and getting what gifts.   Last year I blogged about how our family is changing, and with those changes came some frustrations.  In the end, as I wrote, we did have a lovely Christmas with just the four of us.   However, wheels began turning to change it all up.  Those wheels are really rolling now.

As described in that post last year,  we pondered suspending the annual, traditional Tait Christmas Eve party.  It has been suspended.   We won't be in town.

That's right - we have decided to go away for Christmas!  We haven't done that for years and years.  Now that the kids are grown, it just makes sense.  We are using our Christmas Savings account to go on a trip instead of for buying presents.  The kids thought this was a great idea - memories instead of "things".

Together after great consultation, we chose Orlando, Florida.  We have been there 2 or 3 times before, so it will be different this time with four adults.  Well, some of us don't act so "adult" when it comes to the "Happiest Place in the World".   However, we look forward to some new adventures at new places.  We will be there several days before Christmas, so we hope that will mean several days before the horrendous crowds.   The other change is that we won't crowd into a single hotel room with two large beds, and a roll-away.  We will be in an affordable suite.  We are all adults now (or at least that is what I keep telling myself....!).

We decided to assign each family member a day on which he or she has to plan the activities.  The rest of the family will go along, and will do our best to not complain on the other member's "days".  Yep - we will do our BEST !  We will also only have Christmas stockings, not wrapped presents.  Gifts have to fit inside the stockings.  We are also planning to have Christmas devotionals each day to help us truly feel the spirit and joy of the season in the way that really matters.  We enjoy road trips together, so we are working on things that will help the time pass on the way as we drive down the east coast.  We have tried to convince a few family members to meet us there, but the timing isn't working out.  

It seems that my mind will be occupied by getting ready for this trip more than "getting ready for Christmas".  I have given the whole holiday very little thought.  That disturbs me a bit, actually.  I think it is in part due to being in and out of town over the past month.  We just might not send out cards this year - sorry, people.  Everything about this year's Christmas seems different to me.  And yet, of course, the true purpose of celebration has not changed.  We are just changing the way we will celebrate.

You'll have to WAIT to see how it all turns out!!  Stay tuned.....

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

VayCay in Paradise Part 2

 Can you go to Hawaii without spending at least one day at the beach?  I think not.  We rented an umbrella and chairs, and loved spending the day out in the wonderful ocean air.  Richie read a book on his Kindle, I read my paperback and played Angry Birds on my phone :), and we got in and out of the sun and water.  SOO much fun.

Um.... NO.  No photos of me in my bathing suit.  Just of my feet.  Seriously.

 On Sunday, we went to church and then drove all over the island.  We went to the FAR side where there are cliffs and amazingly huge, windy waves.  We ended up seeing some kite surfers!  What an amazing sport - so exciting to watch. 

We ate at some wonderful restaurants in the Waikiki shopping area.  WOW - amazing food.  Here we are at the famous Duke's at the Outrigger Hotel.  That's beach behind us, but it's hard to see....cuz it was nighttime.

Rich had to work during several of the days, so I hung out at the beautiful pools during some of the time.  Ah, the pool, with fun little smoothies and drinks and sun and reading and relaxing.  I haven't done that in years.  I even went to the pool on my last morning there - here are the views from my pool chair.  Mahalo, Pool Chair.  I will miss you.

I feel very blessed to have been able to go on such a wonderful trip with my dear, wonderful, loving and kind husband.  We are rejuvenated and ready to battle and enjoy life's wavy roads.  I hope to go again sometime, but...

I'll have to wait...... a very long time.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

VayCay in Paradise Part 1

So, Hubby had to go to Hawaii on business recently.  Poor man.  I decided to go WITH him!  All I had to buy was my plane ticket and have some cash for shopping.  WOOT!   We had a most wonderful time.  We count this as our 25th Wedding anniversary trip, even though we are approaching our 27th year.   Here are  a few highlights....

My kitty, Charlotte, wanting to go with us.
Richie, next to the gorgeous sky right after our arrival.
We stayed at a lovely resort, right on the beach, surrounded by beautiful things to see
all over the property.

And here are some of the sites on my morning walks:

No, I didn't walk barefoot the WHOLE way....

We spent a day going to the 'Iolani Palace and driving around the island over to the North Shore for some "shave ice" and the freshest shrimp ever - right next to a shrimp farm!  DEElish.

Gotta protect the restored floors, you know.
According to our Hawaiian friends, the Keikis, this is the BEST Shave Ice place on the island.  There were definitely a lot of tourists there, so it must be true!

We talked to locals at the palace who told us about Fumi's Shrimp - ahhhh, so very wonderful.
This little kitty thought it was wonderful, too.

We also enjoyed a nice Luau.  Gotta say, it wasn't as good as the one at the
Polynesian Cultural Center that we attended a few years ago, but it was nice.

The band
Come to the LUAU!
Some really amazing dancers!


Apparently our assigned dinner companions were too drunk to get a good photo of us - this was 
the best one....

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Festival Fun

Are you a Festival-goer?  We normally aren't, other than the occasional Renaissance Festival or Fall Festival at church.  However, this past Saturday we had planned to do SOMETHING with the three of us together.  It was a gorgeous east coast day.  We chose to go to the National Apple Harvest Festival near Gettysburg,  PA.  It was a fun day for the most part.

But I am wondering why we go to festivals?  First of all, we paid $9 per person to get in - to get in to do exactly what?

To give us the privilege to stand by apple photo spots:

Or to look at crafts, and spend money on them:

Or to buy a metal mug for $12 that gives you unlimited soda - all day long.  Of course, it's only located in one spot, so getting there is a challenge to refill.  It was tasty though.

Or, to have a photo taken that reminds you of the photos taken 40 years ago of your own mother, photos which you used to laugh at because she always had her purse down to her side, and always had her big sunglasses, and almost always, a button-down blouse. 

Scary......., oh so scary...........

So, we paid that $27 and we walked around in the hot sun all day, ate fried food, drank soda, saw a lot of crafts and heard a little BlueGrass, maneuvered crowds, had some apple crisp, bought a craft kit, and hung out together. 

Shoulda gone to the CornFusion Corn Maze.  Maybe next year.....

Thursday, September 30, 2010


Wow-- it's been a while.  I have avoided writing here lately, and have kind of felt at a loss for what to blog about. I still am - this won't be too exciting, I promise.   But, to start off, for those who don't live close by, things that were very difficult a few weeks ago have calmed and are much, much better.  We are blessed.

I'm not 50 anymore.  I am now 51. Ew.  A few weeks before my birthday, I started reinventing myself and got a new car (new to me - a 2007 Mazda CX-9 which I adore), a new haircut, and a new phone.  I miss certain things about my Blackberry, yes I do.  But I like my Droid....although I hate that it is a Google phone. The haircut?  We have a love/hate relationship.  I don't miss the bob.

Because of my church calling, I was recently in charge of a large stake Relief Society meeting before the Women's Broadcast.  What an interesting journey that was!   Several months ago, I was blessed with a picture in my head of what this event should be like.  My presidency and I pulled together a great committee with wonderful women, most of whom were the under- 30 crowd, who are my favorites! ( no offense, old friends).  The activity was a hit - we have received a great deal of positive feedback.  The picture in my head was fulfilled.  What an amazing experience.  When all was over and l looked back, I was amazed at how relaxed I had been for the most part through the process.  That in itself is a blessing for me personally.  That's not my normal mode when it comes to things like this.  The spirit is real, and Heavenly Father is in charge.

One of the most fun things I am doing these days is keeping up 3 missionary blogs.  One for my cousin's son, who comes home in about 5 weeks, one for my niece, Bailee, and one for my friend Kaylene's daughter.   I love doing this!  Such a small thing to serve these dedicated soldiers of truth. 

I am looking forward to General Conference.  I need it.  I am ready for some guidance. 

I can't WAIT!

Sunday, August 22, 2010


I don't really know what to write here, except that I need to write something.  I refer back to this post wherein I described a fear of L doing a little "jumping".  Those fears have become reality.  She chose to not catch herself.  We can no longer catch her if she is unwilling for us to do so.  As Hubby and I deal with free-falling into a reality we did not choose, and one we fought mightily against, we wait for a phone call that she is now ready to be caught.   We are not sure where that phone call will come from, nor if it will in fact come at all.

How do parents deal with these types of situations? I'm still not sure.  I never, ever saw myself in this type of position.  I don't mean to be cryptic, but I really don't want to "air it all out" here.  I count myself blessed to know that many friends are praying for us and for her.  That is all anyone can do at this point.   Yet, who wants to be in a position where YOU are the one being prayed for, and worried about?  I don't want to be.  I'd rather be praying for someone else. Surely that is one of the keys.  That is what the gospel teaches.

We'll just have to wait a little while.....or, maybe a really long one this time.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Satisfying Sunday

I feel very blessed tonight, as the weekend ends.  Do not interpret that as a weekend of great things, or easy things, or that any problems went away.  Quite the opposite.  But, the Lord blessed me with strength and with more inspiration.

Friday afternoon I had an email from my visiting teacher who gave "it" to me straight.  You know, the "it" that you don't want to hear but that you should anyway.  She is wise beyond her years, and took a risk.  She followed the Holy Spirit and told me things I needed to deal with.  She blesses my life.

I attended a session in the temple with my dear friend Diane on Friday afternoon.  She is great to just listen.   She doesn't push, doesn't give unsolicited advice.  She asked no questions about the challenges I currently face, and yet she knows well what they are.  She knew I did not want to discuss them - she followed the Spirit.  She is very wise and full of a fabulous sense of humor.  What did I do before she moved into the area?  And, I mean that, Diane. 

The temple is a place for learning, pondering, and for counting blessings.  I often don't learn a whole lot there, and I often come away feeling like I should have but that I messed up somewhere in that process.   This time was different - I was instructed by the Spirit.  Answers to prayers were given. 

There was a lot of difficulty with a certain "drama queen" in my life.  Crises could have occurred.  The Spirit walked by my side and helped me walk her through some great difficulty.  Tonight, things are calm.

As I serve in my church calling, I often visit the Relief Society lessons of other wards on Sundays.  Last night at the last minute, I decided that today I would attend one in a nearby town.  The lesson was given by their Relief Society president and it was entitled, "Remember Lot's Wife".   Her lesson was about moving forward and not looking back.  I needed to hear that today.  I was again blessed with the Spirit confirming these truths to me.  I was also inspired by the testimonies given by several sisters.

I try to chat with other sisters in our stake when I visit their meetings.  I spoke with two women I had never met before who have no idea how they blessed my life today.   They thanked me for things that I had done in my calling - things that I had hoped would affect someone, but had no way of knowing if they had.  Those are the "pay-off" moments.  Those moments are humbling and gratifying.  Those moments make us grateful to be in His service.  I am blessed.  I am so grateful.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Inspiration Road

I drive a lot for my job.  I go pretty  much all over Maryland except for the Eastern Shore.  I have seen some beautiful countryside.  Now that I have a GPS, I go on roads that I have never seen before because I know I won't get lost.  That has been great fun for me. 

There is one road in particular that has great meaning to me.  I drive on it several times a month.  It is curvy and windy, quiet, and no matter the season, it is always beautiful.  About two years ago, while seeking and needing some important help and inspiration from my Heavenly Father, I was driving on that road, turned off my radio, and just thought, prayed, pleaded  and listened.  Answers came.  Guidance was given that was difficult to follow, but it was undeniably clear that it was my answer. Now, every time I drive there, I turn off my radio just in case there is something I need to listen to and learn. 

Yesterday, I drove on that road.   I was again at a point where I needed some clear guidance from Him.  I turned off the radio, pleaded again for much needed comfort and guidance.  Answers and solutions came to my mind and I once again felt the love of my Heavenly Father. 

I felt very blessed to know that I can ask and get answers.  I love my Inspiration Road.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Dear Anonymous:

Great point - thank you for your comment.  I did NOT update everyone about the carpet and flooring, and how it went when "she" visited.  Thanks to "anonymous", I shall do so now.

I decided to just get the two kids' bedrooms and the bathroom flooring done before "she" came.  I allowed enough time for painting the master bedroom before the carpet guys came again to put those rooms' carpet down.  Well, due to busy lives and craziness, the painting never got done before the carpet came.  I just couldn't get to it.  Ugh.  It is still the same ugly outdated green.  BUT, I LOVE the carpet!  It is  a lovely shade of brown - better than the OLD brown.

OH, and "she"?  Well, her visit was lovely.  A very nice girl - I enjoyed her very much. 

Friday, June 4, 2010


I am about to walk out the door and drive to my baby's high school graduation.   I am not ready for this.  Ok, I am clothed and have a fabulous skirt on - and my hair even looks great for this horribly humid day.  But I am not ready.  She thinks she is ready, but I know she is not.  I probably thought I was ready back in 1902 when I graduated (no, that's not a typo - tee hee).   Since Aspergers is so very prevalent in her dear life, she thinks that she is 18 and now a graduate and by golly, she is ready to make ALL decisions and do whatever she wants.  That scares me.  It should scare her.  Actually, I think it does and so she is not so calm, cool and collected these days.  I'm not either. 

Her dad reminded me of how, when she was a toddler, she would climb and climb to the top of the jungle gyms with no fear.  We would have to stand underneath her and with great fear and anticipation, we would be there to catch her if she fell.  We were there to save her from herself, from her thinking that she could handle anything.  Well, we are back there again.  We are ready to stand ready to catch her.  This time, she doesn't want us there.  This time, the stakes are higher.  This time, the consequences could be more than a scratch or a bruise.  This time, we have to pray that we have done enough, and turn it over to Heavenly Father in prayer.  

This time, she may have to catch herself.  We'll have to wait and see if she will. 

Friday, May 21, 2010

Let the Wild Paint Start

OK, so I think I scared everyone off with the last ranting.  Sorry - I am calmer now.  Lara's suggestion was well-taken.  I postponed the carpet for our bedroom until the 7th of June.  I am taking time to plan the paint, etc.  The other two rooms will get carpet this Tuesday, which we can deal with.  Those rooms don't need paint for now.  I will then paint our room myself.  Yep - me.myself. and I.  I got a paint estimate that was more than the carpet, so I will do it myself.

  In fact, in preparation,  I am painting this - the only room in our house that has NEVER gotten any attention and still has the icky builder beige on it.  Our teeny master bath that I hate.  I think I have allowed MAYBE one or two friends to ever enter it's doorway.  It IS Gross:

NO cupboards, shelves, or cabinets.  What builder designs a room like that?  Craziness. I have plans, though.  That's why I'm showing it BEFORE.   I took out everything to prepare for painting.   Ok, a bottle or two remain.

Here is the best part, though:

Yep - lovely stone.  Ok, not really stone.  Fake Stone.  It's Vinyl made to LOOK like stone.  I love it.
So, we are getting there.  Baby steps.  I should be gardening.  Ahhh... my little gardens.  Haven't done a thing to those boxes except let the tomato plants regrow from last year.  Great.  I should have been painting during the BLIZZARDS!  Silly me.

I"ll have to wait a while....

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Carpet Crazy

So, I am stressing.  Seriously stressing.  I should have talked to Kellie before I made a move.  Kellie was stressing over her oldest son and his new fiancee coming for the weekend.  She has great wisdom.  I started stressing a couple of weeks ago about B's "friend girl" coming (I hope she doesn't read this blog yet.... :) ).  Our house is about 16 years old and the carpet upstairs is horrible and old and needs replacing.   When I found out "she" was coming, I got this BRIGHT idea that I needed to finally get new carpet for the upstairs.  Great idea.  I even picked it out quickly!  Unheard of for me.  I even paid for half of it already.  It is written in stone.

So, then I get another GREAT idea that our bedroom needs painting.  It really does and has needed it for a while.  I thought - OOOH, I'll get a estimate for having it painted.  It's kind of a dark color currently.  Yea - the painting would cost more than the carpet.  So, I continue to stress.

I mean, who gets new carpet FIRST before painting?  I have spilled many a paint can in my days on new carpeting.  The first time was in high school when I helped the mom of my boyfriend paint walls at her daycare center.  Yes - Clutzo tripped over a HUGE 5 gallon paint can and.....you can imagine.  Embarrassment and carpet cleaners called.  But I digress....

So yes, now I am stressing over the fact that I will have to do the painting.  I don't want to do it, nor do I have the time before "she" comes and before the carpet is scheduled.  Hubby says to breathe and to quit worrying about it and just get the carpet.

BUT, just the carpet - do you know what that entails??  We have a small upstairs.  There is no way that we can move all the S T U F F  from 3 bedrooms (one with a large sitting room with all my craft, sewing, and office S T U F F ) out of the way for the carpet guys to come all in one day.  I need to divide it in to two days.   But, then, which room goes first?  And, how do we get it all back together before "she" comes? 

And, besides all THAT, I don't even know what colors I would paint!   Who paints when they don't have the whole plan together of the "look" they are going for?  I don't have " a look" decided on.   What the heck was I thinking??

And, I am also thinking, "she" really wouldn't have cared either.

So why did I??

I thought being 50 and all, I would have figured this out and not be losing my mind.  Wrong.

(And, if "she" is reading this, please don't tell me for about 5 years....if "she" is still reading then).

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Prom Packaging

L is a Senior.  Last night her prom was held.  It was her first.  She looked like a slightly "punk" Cinderella.  Gorgeous.  She didn't leave school early to attend a spa or have her hair and nails done and her body scrubbed.  Many girls do that - I don't really get that, and she doesn't either.  "This isn't a wedding" was our mantra.  Thank Heavens - on multiple levels.   

We started prom dress shopping in March.  She has no problem keeping the standards of dress that our church follows.  Finding a dress on this side of the country that honors that is much more difficult.  While I could have sewn one for her myself, or ordered one online from some companies who support dressing modestly,  we decided to shop for a dress and see if it would be fairly simple to modify.  I have several friends who have done that, so I figured I could do that as well.

L is wonderful to shop with.  She knows what she wants and when she sees it, she's done.   When she was  younger, that bothered me - I wanted more of an  "experience" shopping with my daughter.  You know - "hmmmm.... well, let's see what the other 50 stores have before we get THAT one".  Nope - she wasn't having it.   I now appreciate that talent in her very much.  I wish I had it.  When we walked into the first store the first time shopping, she saw it, loved it, tried it on, and we bought it and were done!  Sweet.

Here is what it looked like before:

And here is the after.  I like the black satin sleeves - I think they "add" to the look, besides covering up my daughter:

They were pretty easy to slip-stitch in.  Because L is only 5'1", I had to also take up the length.  I did that by just folding up and matching seems and layers that were already in the dress, and tacking them in place.  The affect it had was to make it much more poofy and "cinderella-ish".  Worked for her!

She looked like a princess and had a wonderful evening.  Maybe we'll add a photo of her and the "boy".... and,  maybe not.  You'll have to WAIT and see.... :)

Friday, April 30, 2010

Trying to "Measure Success Properly"

I haven't blogged for about 6 weeks.  I haven't really read other people's blogs very much lately.  A lot has happened since my last post.  I was busy for two weeks getting ready to go out west to visit family and a few friends, and then to drive across America with my son.  I was gone on that trip for almost two weeks.  Then, I've taken almost two weeks of being home to try and catch up on what I missed for being GONE for almost two weeks.  You know the drill....

All of that craziness has brought on feelings of being quite overwhelmed.  My head knows that we women never really "catch up".  Yet, my heart is so frustrated that I can't.   With my new church calling and an increase in my work, I have been more tired and harried than I have been for years.  I count my new church calling AND the increase in work as huge blessings....yet, with them, comes more responsibility and demands on my time. 

As I sat down this morning to study scriptures, I decided to work my way through the talks from our last General Conference Broadcast from Salt Lake City.  Next one up for me was the one by Julie B. Beck, my current heroine.  Wouldn't you know that this talk is exactly what I needed to read today?

Here are a couple of highlights:

"A good woman knows that she does not have enough time, energy, or opportunity to take care of all of the people or do all of the worthy things her heart yearns to do. Life is not calm for most women, and each day seems to require the accomplishment of a million things, most of which are important. A good woman must constantly resist alluring and deceptive messages from many sources telling her that she is entitled to more time away from her responsibilities and that she deserves a life of greater ease and independence. But with personal revelation, she can prioritize correctly and navigate this life confidently.

 "Good women always have a desire to know if they are succeeding. In a world where the measures of success are often distorted, it is important to seek appreciation and affirmation from proper sources. To paraphrase a list found in Preach My Gospel, we are doing well when we develop attributes of Christ and strive to obey His gospel with exactness. We are doing well when we seek to improve ourselves and do our best. We are doing well when we increase faith and personal righteousness, strengthen families and homes, and seek out and help others who are in need. We know we are successful if we live so that we qualify for, receive, and know how to follow the Spirit. When we have done our very best, we may still experience disappointments, but we will not be disappointed in ourselves. We can feel certain that the Lord is pleased when we feel the Spirit working through us.

"Peace, joy, and hope are available to those who measure success properly.

I will search for some peace, joy, and hope today and try to not worry about the weeds, dust bunnies, and unfinished projects and laundry.    I am grateful for the Lord's inspiration today to read this wonderful message.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

3 in 1

Today has been quite the day.  Three important events have occured, none of which have anything to do with the other.  Still, all three impact my life and my family's lives in crucial ways.

First, the Health Care bill passed in Congress.   I do not support this bill.  I do not want more government control of my life.  I do not want my future grandchildren to pay for this "great idea".  I do think health care has big issues and needs some fixing, but not like this.  I blog about all of that in another place.  So, keep reading....

Second, I was asked to serve in a new calling in my church.  For my readers of other faiths, women in my church are members of the Relief Society.   It is the oldest and largest women's organization in the world as far as records show.   Our church's members are divided up in congregations based on where people live, called wards.  Those wards are then organized together into what are called stakes - usually 6-9 congregations form a stake.   Well, I was asked to serve as the Relief Society President over our stake - which includes about 1,000 LDS women.  I accepted that request to serve.  I look forward to the many experiences that lie ahead of me and to meeting all the great women who live within these boundaries.  It is a big responsbility, but I have faith that the Lord will bless me and help me to rise to the occasion.

Third, and most importantly, today is L's Day.  My wonderful precious children (who are now of adult age) are adopted.  18 years ago today, my precious daughter joined our family.  We prayed for her for so many years to hurry up and come to us.   She was 8 weeks old when I finally got to hold her and kiss her and sing to her.

All I could see were her gorgeous dark eyes with dark eyebrows and long eyelashes. 

She was beautiful.  She still is.  

She blesses my life every day.  Our family tradition is that we celebrate our children's "Day" with cakes, carefully personalized meal choices, and discussion of the day they "came home".  We had to postpone the celebration for this year because....L is sick.

Fear not - the tradition will continue as long as my "babies" will allow.

(bottom photo by Kellie Nuss Photography)