Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas and Cousins

We had extended family here for nearly a week this Christmas. It was my husband's brother's family, which includes three children of the same ages as our oldest three children. We all had a great time! Cousins tend to play well together, I've noticed; I think there must be some genetic compatibility that is reinforced by the cousins having parents who were brought up similarly.

Sometimes my children, like any normal American child, express a little sorrow at not being able to have some material luxury, and I tell them that instead of giving them those extra luxuries, we gave them their siblings. When they are all grown up and their toys are ruined and forgotten, they will have each other. Siblings know where you came from, and if you have enough of them, you're (almost) guaranteed to always be on good terms with at least one of them. In a land of convenient friendships and an age where marriages too often don't last, my children will always have their sisters to care for and to be loved by. I can't imagine any ballet classes or My Little Pony collections that could outweigh that future blessing. And some day they'll bring their children together and get to enjoy watching the next generation of cousins play happily together.

Friday, December 20, 2013


I remember a short couple of months ago when the Republicans were evil for "shutting down" Congress in an attempt to get the Democrats to delay the individual health mandate, the same mandate that the President just announced will be delayed for people who buy the allegedly "garbage" insurance they had before the PPACA.

I remember being told in school about how Hollywood studios "blacklisted" Communists from getting work in Hollywood and how that was a terrible thing. Now when a known Christian expresses his beliefs about sin in a non-work setting, his TV network suspends him from being on his own reality show. So Communists, who literally did want to foment revolution, were OK, but people who actually believe in their traditional faiths deserve to lose their employment?

I remember that Raul Castro is starving his people and find him unworthy of a smiling handshake from the president of a country that has taken in so many refugees from the Castro regime.

There are many other facts that I remember. Who knows if a Google search would turn them up easily and accurately? The internet, at least the easily accessed parts, can be used as a 1984-style "memory hole" by those who control or can game the search engines. We all need to learn facts for ourselves and teach them to our children.

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Christmas Party

Our congregation ("ward", as we call it in LDS terminology) had a great Christmas party this morning. After a breakfast and some Christmas carols, we wrapped presents for a family affected by this year's flooding in Colorado and gathered a bunch of canned food up to be distributed to people in the mountains who were affected by the floods. At the end, all our kids got to fill little stockings with candy to take home.

Decorations were simple, everyone pitched in to work and clean up together, and we didn't have to line up our children for their chance to tell Santa what toys they wanted. Our children have plenty of toys already, so I'm not a fan of that greed-encouraging tradition. It's never too early to start teaching that it's more blessed to give than to receive.