Thursday, November 11, 2010

Small Successes

FaithButton It's that time again, time to remember the successes we've had for the week, keeping in mind that the small successes are just as important as big ones! :) Click the button, come to Faith & Family Live and put yours down!

1. I started a to-do list daily. With some of my awesome friends, we talked about the flylady's notebook idea to keep things organized and to be better at doing our housework. While none of us are doing her specific notebook, we're all doing variations and having some success. I put down everything on my to-do list and check it off as I get it done.

2. I got stuff on the to-do list DONE. Yes, two days in a row I got the majority of things on my list done. That is awesome and it makes me happy.

3. I didn't kill anyone yesterday, despite having a "terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day". Starting with feeling crummy in the morning, followed by an explosive diaper that ended with the kumquat in the bath, a trip to the hospital for paperwork that resulted in getting stuck with needles twice (because she couldn't get the first one in, but I don't hold a grudge against her! :)), and then ended with a trip to Walmart where my battery died and apparently it was "I'm too busy and otherwise don't want to help anyone even a mom with a baby in a carseat" day so I had to leave my ice cream in the car to melt (yes, yesterday was super warm in the afternoon, grrr) and go inside with my just waking up hadn't been fed in 3 hours baby and wait for automotive to come help me. And no one died. But don't ask about my to-do list, or that might just change! ;-)

Monday, November 8, 2010

From Secularism to Mormonism; Part 1 of My Conversion Story

So, I've been meaning to post about my conversion. I'm going to do it in at least two different posts because there are two parts to my conversion.

I was raised in a pretty secular home; my mom taught us to pray, and a basic moral code. Growing up, if you'd asked me I would definitely had said I was Christian. But, in that broad "I don't kill anyone, and I'm a pretty decent person" sense of the word. My mom did not have us baptized for a number of reasons, primarily because she thought it best to let us choose which faith we wanted. I think that she had the best intention with this, and I think that she did better for us than her parents did for her.

Growing up I had a huge desire to be close to God. We went to church sometimes as a family, but when I went regularly it was with a friend. I was drawn to her Lutheran faith with all the rituals and the solemnity involved. I was drawn in (NOT pushed away) by the fact that I was not able to receive Communion there. They were a strict congregation, and you weren't allowed to receive unless you were a Lutheran.

As I mentioned, my parents did their best to instill a moral compass based on their experiences in the world. Their experience was relatively secular. I don't mean this in a bad way; this is how my parents were raised as well, and I know that they did their best to teach me what was right and what was wrong. Unfortunately, I didn't hear all of what they were saying, and they also didn't say it all. I made a lot of bad choices from about 17 years old to 23 years old; I'm not going to go into what these choices were because I don't want to think about them that much. They didn't make me a better person, I'm not glad I had those experiences, and I don't have any desire to relive them. Suffice it to say, they ran the gambit of bad choices and sins; I am incredibly thankful that my baptism washed it all away and yet I still felt compelled to do extra penance. But, I digress.

When I moved to Lamar, in 2005, I started working at the hospital. I was now at the back end of my life of bad choices and I was hurting in so many ways. I had such a longing to be close to God, but I was so afraid of stopping the destructive path I was on. Not, afraid in that I loved what I was doing, but afraid in the sense that it was all I had known for so long that I didn't know what I would do without that. I had some toxic people in my life that made me feel horrible, but who I felt like I had to keep in prominent places in my life.

Basically, I was ripe for the picking. Insert wonderful coworkers who happened to be Mormon, who spent A LOT of time telling me that I'd make a good Mormon and basically otherwise prepping me. Finally, I was invited to "hear the lessons". If any of my readers knows about Mormons, this is when the missionaries come over and tell you "all" about becoming a Mormon. (only they don't tell you everything. Stay tuned for my blog post about Mormonism to Catholicism) Well, in my case, I was invited over for lunch on a Sunday to my boss' house and the missionaries met us there. The first two were goobers, I won't lie. But, my boss and his wife corrected them and made what they were saying make sense. Sort of. Remember how I mentioned that I didn't have a lot of church in my background? Well, that certainly helped the missionaries because I didn't know any better than what they were saying. Since I knew so little of Scripture, I certainly didn't know anything about Church history. So, OK, I could totally buy that there was an apostasy. I mean, they used Scripture (from the good ole King James version which I had at home), so it must be the truth right?

From that first lesson on, I was entrenched in this wonderful group of people who were fighting to have me learn at their homes. Everyone wanted me to come over and spend time with me, and learn and be part of their families. It was so breathtaking; I've never been so wanted in my life. I needed people to want to be around me; I needed good, wholesome people to think I was worthy. I have to say that I think that is what made my conversion so easy for them. I didn't question anything; when some of my friends or family brought things up, I asked but took the Mormon responses easily and unquestioningly.

I worked with 3 Mormons; one was my boss, one came back to church because of me, and one...well, he and his wife were like "the cool" crowd at school and people just wanted to be around them. She was so cool in fact, she didn't come to anything for work (picnics, dinners, etc), and you never could tell if she liked you or was just being polite. But, they had me babysit so I think they liked me. ;-)

Oh yeah, the kids....if nothing else had sucked me in, that would have. I love kids and I always have; I got to babysit and otherwise hang out with these wonderful little people who adored me.

My family tried to be supportive by coming to my baptism, but they didn't understand it. They didn't understand this major shift that was happening in my life. I think, sometimes, they still don't understand it. One of the major rules of being a Mormon is no alcohol. This is because Joseph Smith said it is a bad thing, it is in the Doctrine and Covenants, and you. just. don't. do. it. So, I gave up drinking. Blind obedience made me quit alcohol, it wasn't until my true conversion that realized why I needed to give up drinking.

So, when asked how I was converted to LDS, I think it's safe to say I was fellow-shipped in. They saw a weakness, a need, in me and they seeked to fulfill it. I don't think that this is a bad thing, I think it's just good "business" so to speak. I don't think anyone becomes a Mormon because of documentation or history. That isn't even what they rely on, it's a "burning in your bosom" kind of religion; you have to feel the prompting of "the Holy Spirit". I put that in quotes for a reason; I think that the LDS church is a product of Satan deceiving us on Earth. I don't say that lightly and I don't say that meaning that I think that Mormons are knowing Satanists. I say it out of genuine concern for their souls. Most Mormons are good and true, and they think that they are following the Holy Spirit. However, Satan is a deceptive guy and he can mimic the good feelings that the Holy Spirit gives us. Also, just because we are bound by religion, does not mean that God is. The Holy Spirit can work through Mormons just as much as He can through good, holy Catholics. I think that at times I did feel the true Holy Spirit. Like when I was at a family's Monday night Family Home Evening and we were playing games (religious or not) and the older kids were helping the younger kids. Or when I was teaching the Sunday School class about the Old Testament. But, when it came to teaching actual Book of Mormon stuff, no, I don't think that is the Holy Spirit. More on that in my next post though...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Small Successes


Well, I'm trying to remember that my small successes in a week are going to add up to some really big successes, so here goes.

1. The kumquat has put himself to sleep for naps all week. Meaning that when he starts to get a little tired I put him in his nap spot and he plays and coos a little and eventually falls asleep on his own! Hooray! Don't ask me about last night though...

2. I've done housecleaning everyday this week...and you can tell! Cleaning the kitchen and dishes two days, picking up the living room/dining area...I've been a regular housewife diva. OK, well, not really but spending time each day cleaning is certainly a plus! :)

3. I didn't eat ALL the brownies. OK, that doesn't seem like a big deal, but you don't understand just how much I love brownies. I passed that brownie pan several times yesterday and didn't always snag some. In fact, I left two big pieces for Jason last night. And what did that awesome husband of mine do? He saved the last one for me! :-D I love HIM!!! More than brownies with ice cream and hot fudge on them!

So, what have you done this week that makes you proud? Faith & Family live mention how it's important for moms to do this, but I think it's important for EVERYONE. So, tell me, with a link on F&F Live or in my comments...what YOU'RE proud of! :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Halloween Weekend

So, Jason won the single best costume for the hospital. It's pretty lame, as you can see in this picture, he is posing with the dish he plans to run away with. ;-)

[caption id="attachment_355" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="They are not poised to run just yet..."][/caption]

It was pretty funny though, here are some of the others.

[caption id="attachment_358" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="This is Jason's coworker, Brandi, she made an awesome cow!"][/caption]

So, Hey Diddle Diddle was lived was pretty cute! Personally, I think Pharmacy had the best costumes. They were each medicine. It was very cool.

We spent the weekend in Pueblo, for my first weekend working for WSi at Parkview Medical Center. It was pretty great actually. The hospital is awesome, and I'm going to get a chance to work with some diagnoses that I probably would never have gotten the chance to if I wasn't working there. Jason got some much desired one on one time with the kumquat! They had tons of fun playing in the park and wandering all around town.

[caption id="attachment_359" align="aligncenter" width="234" caption="Dominic's new fall hat! :)"][/caption]

On Sunday we got home later than we had planned, so trick or treating was pretty lame. We had hoped to go to a few friends' houses to show off our little monkey, but they were out with their kids or otherwise didn't have their lights on. So, we stopped at just a few houses and showed him off. We are so excited for next year to really get to trick or treat with him!

[caption id="attachment_360" align="aligncenter" width="225" caption="He almost looks happy. We waited until he was tired of the outfit to take pictures, of course!"][/caption]

When we got home we turned on the outside light and prepared for trick or treaters. And then we waited. And waited. And, oh yeah, then we got 2 groups of kids. Then we waited. And then we got one more group. And then it was 10PM and we shut the light off. This is why we opted to purchase candy we like, we haven't gotten many trick or treaters the last couple of years. So, tootsie rolls and peanut butter kisses are all ours. Mwhahaha...ahem, yeah, I don't really do that whole evil laugh thing very well. But, at any rate, we are enjoying the benefits of having babies at Halloween time! ;-)