Tuesday, October 23, 2012

I Believe

On Sunday mornings, there is a show on BYU TV called "I Believe". Michael and I watch it while we eat breakfast and get ready. I really enjoy it. At first glance, it looks boring. Just a man interviewing another person, every Sunday. But I've learned so much. Let me explain.

This show is an effort for all faiths to understand each other. Each week, the host interviews a leader of a different religion. It's really wonderful. The interviews are in no way mean or tricky. He is not at all trying to catch them in their words. He is a very kind man just searching for understanding. Something I have learned is that every faith has sacred rituals. Every faith has a core belief in kindness to mankind. Every faith is passionate about their beliefs. Every faith does good works.

So, this has had me thinking. Why, oh WHY can't that be enough for everyone? My faith is important to me. And your faith is important to you. Making negative and disrespectful comments about each others beliefs accomplishes zero good. If it offends one when people make rude and ignorant comments about their faith, then isn't it incredibly hypocritical to make rude and ignorant comments about the others faith? Why can someone make a rude joke about a Mormon and it's considered funny. But if someone makes a joke about Jews or Muslims, they're intolerant?  If we all, for the most part, believe in good works and helping our fellow man, then why do those beliefs so quickly fly out the window when someone engages in their sacred rituals?

For example, I was watching one of these episodes on Hinduism last Sunday. Their rituals are completely foreign to me. But what I was watching was beautiful. They were so passionate about their services and wedding ceremonies. I would never even THINK of disrespecting or degrading that, because I can relate to being so passionate about something so special to me. Yet there are some who are so quick to make fun of or question these things. I'm not perfect. We've all at one time or another made fun of something that's important to another. It's just getting so much worse I feel. Nothing is off limits. And it's heart breaking.

So, this show about religion, got me thinking about the political environment. I'm so sick of it. We live in a free country where we are free to think and feel and say whatever we want at that is a huge blessing. But, why must we use that freedom to bring others down? I am 100% for personal opinions. I have strong opinions of my own. And I think it's A-OK to disagree.  But, I by NO MEANS think it is appropriate to bully others in order to make your case. No matter your race, religion, economical background, ethnicity, it's NEVER ok to make fun of someone elses. I'm so sick of seeing people all over facebook talking about "those stupid liberals" or "those stupid conservatives". THESE PEOPLE HAVE FEELINGS. Just because they believe differently from you, it does not mean they are bad or that they should have to explain themselves. I truly pray that we can remember to be kind to one another. I feel deeply and strongly about my political and religious views. And I feel so hurt when they are mocked. So let's stop it. Stop mocking each other. Everyone's views are important. Hiding behind a computer and typing cruel things about people (candidates included) does not make a person any bigger. Quite the opposite actually, it makes a person a coward.

There's my vent that's been building up in me over the past year. Again, of course I've said things I regret and judged people that I regret judging. But, this is my pledge to do better. What our country and our religious congregations need are kind people willing to put their opinions aside and work together. So, I'm going to try harder.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

A Beautiful Life

(You'll have to click on the picture to make it bigger. I can't make it any bigger because of my blog layout. I don't have any pictures of her and I when I was younger because that was before the digital age.)

My sweet Grandma Williams (my mom's mom), passed away last night. I feel such a feeling of happiness for her. She has been without my Grandpa since I was born... that's 25 years without her husband. I am so happy they can be together again and she must be filled with so much joy right now. What a blessing! I'm so thankful for the plan of salvation.

Though I am so happy that she is where she belongs, those of us here on earth are sad to lose her. She was one of those people who took things as they came, told it like it was, and made the VERY best of her life for almost 95 years. She just had a way of making things seem good. Nothing was ever that bad.  I think that must be because of how hard she worked her whole life, the loss she had experienced in her life, and the class she handled everything with. I never tired of hearing her talk about raising her kids and owning the flower shop and her mission, etc. It's such a beautiful thing when a person is able to live such a fulfilling life and then move on in peace. I will miss her humor and her sweetness dearly, but I am so happy for her.

Some of my favorite memories of my grandma are:

- Of course, eating her delightful cinnamon rolls! Mom would always tell us not to ask her to make them because she was getting too old and tired... but grandma always wanted to make them for us every time she visited and we milked that for all it was worth.
- One time she sat outside with my neighborhood friends and I and helped us make prank phone calls when we were younger...it was truly hilarious!
- She always wore a wig when I was younger. I remember seeing her take her wig off before bed and thinking that was the weirdest thing I'd ever seen in my life! I loved when she got older and embraced her beautiful white hair and had it done up every time we'd come to visit :)
- Many games of checkers. That woman did not mess around with her checkers. Hahaha! She may have used some strong words during a game or two... all in good grandma humor of course!
- She taught me how to play Flinch. A card game similar to Skipbo.
- Her and Grandpa owned the coolest/most unique house in existence, I'm certain.
- She always spoke her mind which provided a lot of laughs. My most recent experience with this was when I told her I named my daughter Harlow. She said she thought that would sound better if it started with a "C"...Carlow?? Sorry Grandma. Lol!
- She always sent birthday and Christmas cards. Always. She never forgot me. She has like a billion grand, great grand, and great-great grandchildren combined and yet, she always remembered me, and all of us.
- The woman was sharp as a tack to the very end. She could recall distant memories and tell me things I never got to know about my grandpa. She remembered details of my mom's life and I always loved hearing those things.
-I love reading her history and stories from her mission. She was such a faithful woman. Serving the Lord her whole life.

Those are just the first things that come to mind when I think of Grandma Williams. I truly feel so very blessed to be a part of her posterity.One of the many blessings during my grandma's last couple of days was that I was able to spend some time with her last week, along with my sister and my parents. I'll post on that great trip later :) She was a part in building a beautiful family and left quite a legacy. Love you, Grandma.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Do you want to share a peeve?

When there is something that bugs my parents, they say: "do you want to share a peeve?" I totally love it. Every once in a while, you need to share your pet peeves. So, here I go. I'm sure my husband is sick of hearing about them. And for some reason, I think typing them for the world to hear will make me feel better :)

1) LOUD CARS! We live right on the corner of a busy stop sign intersection. And like 3 houses down from the fire station. Worst. To all of you who rev your engines, peel out, drive RIDICULOUSLY noisy trucks or motorcycles, or run the stop sign and get in crashes...STOP IT! You're driving me crazy. The garbage trucks are crazy loud too, but I appreciate their service. And Harlow is terrified of the fire trucks and screams every time their sirens go off, but I also am thankful for their service, so that is not included in my pet peeve. I will just never buy a home next to a fire station.

2) UNKIND POLITICAL COMMENTS. I am totally cool with political opinions of course. I'm so thankful that we live in a free country where we can believe whatever we want. But I cannot STAND these comments "republicans are such IDIOTS" or "liberals are all morons" or worse. My goodness people, what happened to respecting each other? These "republicans" or "democrats" are PEOPLE. Not just a group of no named nothings. They are people with feelings and calling names isn't cool. Not even when it's in a political environment. Obviously we don't have to agree, but we really should stop acting like name-calling children and act like grown ups who know how to be kind to each other.

3) LOUD SWALLOWING. If you swallow loud enough that it can be heard across the room over the TV or other noises...remind me to be chewing something crunchy in your presence so the noise is drowned out.

4) UTAH ACCENTS. It is not dill, it's deal. It is not fumily, it is family. It is not sell, it's sale. Phewph, feels good to finally get that one out.

5) DISHWASHER SOAP DISPENSER. Mine doesn't open. My gosh. It drives me INSANE. Sometimes the soap comes out and cleans my dishes, and sometimes it doesn't. So, I have to wait to the end and see if the soap came out, and if it didn't, I have to run it again. Bahh it seriously sets me ON FIRE when it doesn't work!

That just felt wonderful. Now you all know. Those are the things that get under my skin. And I seriously think I'm going to sleep more soundly tonight now that I've voiced those things :)

In other news, things continue to go well for us here, so I truly have nothing to complain about. My mom and Dad and sister, Emily and her kids are coming to visit this week and I CANNOT WAIT A SINGLE BIT! More on that later!