Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Three items of news:
1. You may remember this post in which I felt so sorry for Justice O'Connor...well, today is her lucky day! She can finally retire for reals because the dumb senate finally approved her replacement, Judge Samuel Alito. Although Alito is not a shiny super star like Roberts, I think he's qulaified and will not disappoint. I do not think he will lean too conservative--I hope all of the justices will act as justices and not politicians. Anyway, congratulations to my girl Sandra D.
2. I just saw that Coretta Scott King died today. That made me sad, but also happy for her. She was a dignified and lovely woman. I like to think, as I always do when a widow or widower dies, that there has been a sweet reunion, and that her husband is proud of the life she led without him for 37 years.
3. We are, again, expecting a baby. I wanted to wait until I had conclusive medical results that things are going well, but I am super-nauseated and tired, so that should tell me that things are at least more normal than last time. I am 51 days along today--7 weeks last Sunday, and due September 18th. Yay....
More later--the natives are restless.
Tuesday, January 24, 2006
Addie rides the bronze elephant
These polar bears were my absolute favorite thing when I was a little kid. I thought it was so cute how they played with their ball and rolled around in the water. Now they have added a new underground view where you can see them under water. It's really cool, and so fun to take my girls to see the exact things I loved when I was their age.
My friend Susan was also home visiting from California, so she brought her nephew, Bailey, and joined us at the zoo. We also took the kids to Chuck E. Cheese for a while and they had a great time. It was really nice to see Sue again after several years, especially back in Tucson at our old "stomping grounds"--in fact, the Chuck E. Cheese place we went to used to be the dollar theatre where we hung out with our friends in high school. Anyway, it was good to see her--love ya, Sooz.
Monday, January 23, 2006
Thanks for being you, Grandma! You've always been one of my very best friends and we're (all 4 of us) so glad you were born!
Saturday, January 21, 2006
Let me preface my little story here with this: I find soul-stirring inspiration and truth in lots of things—I quite like looking for it (like the Innocence Mission song that says, “I look for the good in everything—it hurts when I cannot find it.”)—but I still maintain that the only perfect man was Christ and the only perfect truth is contained in his gospel. But I find his qualities and his teachings scattered throughout everyday life because (a) we are all God’s children and have inherited some of His qualities, and (b) mankind cannot help but be attracted to light and truth.
So either I am way too hormonal, or I rediscovered some spirit-stirring beauty this morning. Probably both. At any rate, I was driving up to the church for a big 4-hour long Enrichment Day (that’s when the women get together to learn and make stuff while enjoying each other’s company and, sometimes, a yummy meal—I was teaching a mini-class on Celebrating Valentines Day as a family—fun traditions and some cute little gifts for kids, husbands and friends). I was listening to my U2’s greatest hits CD and “Pride (In the Name of Love)” is the first song. For some reason, the song just hit me in the gut, the same way it did when I saw the video on some Saturday morning show back in 1983, and I ran and scribbled the name of the band and song in one of my sixth grade notebooks. Back then I didn’t know the meaning of the words, but today I do and they touched me so much, I started to cry.
One man come in the name of love
One man come and go
One man come, he to justify
One man to overthrow
One man caught on a barbed wire fence
One man he resists
One man washed on an empty beach
One man betrayed with a kiss
In the name of love --What more in the name of love ?
(nobody like you...)
Early morning, April 4
Shot rings out in the Memphis sky
Free at last, they took your life
They could not take your pride
In the name of love --What more in the name of love ?
The idea of dying for truth & justice, whether is be the infinite atonement of the Savior, or one of a million lives that have been given so that man may be what he was meant to be…well, it’s pretty heart wrenching. I thought of all the dear friends I have whose skin is darker than mine (well, that’s 99% of the human race) and tried to imagine them being treated as half a person, as another species, as not my equal. It hurts to imagine, and I thank God I was born in my time and place. But it breaks my heart, and I know it breaks God’s heart, too, to see what we still do to each other after all the lives and testimonies that have been given for what is right and true.
So before today, I hadn’t thought of Civil Rights in the gospel context, but I realize now that liberty and equality are always just causes. Heck, it’s the theme of the Book of Mormon—from Captain Moroni’s Title of Liberty to the description of the peaceful times, “conquer we must when our cause it is just, and this be our motto, In God is our Trust.” It’s a worthy fight; I’m just sorry it has cost us some of our brightest lives. I still cling to the ideal:
“And it came to pass… the people were all converted unto the Lord, upon all the face of the land… and there were no contentions and disputations among them, and every man did deal justly one with another. And they had all things common among them; therefore there were not rich and poor, bond and free, but they were all made free, and partakers of the heavenly gift.”
-4 Nephi 1: 22-23
PS: I do realize that Bono, like Oprah, has a severe God complex, and I try to look past their enormous egos and admit that they have done some good. We just got the “Rattle and Hum” DVD and I watched it tonight with Rich with our pimped-out surround sound and I must say, it was almost as good as being there. And I WAS there in Sun Devil Stadium, two nights in December 1987 in the cold rain where they filmed Bono singing “MLK”—“Sleep tonight/ and may your dream be realized/ If the thunder cloud passes rain/ so let it rain down on me,” and it totally started raining. I never want to see U2 again because they will never be as good as they were on the Joshua Tree tour (nor will they be as cheap--$5 a ticket). Watching the DVD tonight made me feel all the same exact teenage feelings as I felt, standing there in the rain with my-love-of-that-year, Robert, knowing that we were watching something really amazing. Something new stood out to me this time, though—right before the footage of them singing “Sunday Bloody Sunday,” Bono gives a preface. He says he’s not sure that the song should even be in the film because there is no way the audience will appreciate the way they felt on stage the day of the concert. That same day there was a bombing in Ireland that killed 11 people and injured many others. They had been singing the song for, like, 6 years and still horrible acts of terrorism were still happening in Ireland. When Bono said we wouldn’t understand in 1987, he was right. But we most certainly understand after 2001. So THIS time, 19 years later, I understood what he was singing and why his voice cracked and why he screamed “no more!”
Friday, January 20, 2006
"Mom, mom, this ear is hurting! It's hot! Help me!" Shucks! Those dang Melin eustachian tubes have done it again (actually, I am not complaining because she only gets like one ear infection a year). I knew she probably started with the same virus Heidi had and just got infected elsewhere. So I gave her some Tylenol and held her upright (I was upright because I was coughing too much laying down) and fell asleep that way. Then I took her to the doctor this morning.
Her right ear, the "hot" one, was indeed infected. The other ear, however, held a much more fun surprise. The doctor pulled out a little wad of green foil, covered in ear wax. It was a Hershey's Kiss wrapper! And it must have beenthere for a long time because we only had those in Arizona. EWWW! That's what I get for not cleaning her ears for a month. But then again, maybe it's good that I didn't--I could have pushed it in further since I certainly wouldn't have been watching out for FOIL in her EAR!
I had something else really urgent and funny to tell you, but it has gone away.
I do have a special wish: I wish that everyone could appreciate the insanely ingenious humor of the Christopher Guest mockumentary movies (This Is Spinal Tap, Waiting for Guffman, Best In Show, A Mighty Wind). Seriously--the world would be a better place if people only understood how smart and funny these shows are. Consider this:
They only write story lines and character sketches--no dialogue. So when you see those actors talking in those interviews, they are totally making up everything they say
All the goofy folk songs in "A Mighty Wind" are original pieces written by the cast members. I just can't believe how spot-on they are.
You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one. I hope someday you'll join the mockumentary fan club, and the world will live as one.
Thursday, January 19, 2006
Addie mugging for Daddy's camera - August 2003
Oh, man! How do they just grow up under our noses!?! Look at that little baby face!
Monday, January 16, 2006
PS: I will say this bit: I watched a great PBS show on Saturday night called "Rasing Cain" about raising boys and dealing with their emotional life and ways of learning. It was interesting and heartwrenching. One statistic broke my heart: the U.S .leads the industrialized world in fatherlessness. That's so sad. There were many lost boys on this show, but it was cool to see the ways God provided them to learn to be men. It reminded me how important it is to serve with gusto in the church and community because for some kids, it's life or death. Read more by clicking here.
Friday, January 13, 2006
Our former Stake President, AJ Busby, performed the sealing and it was really lovely. He talked a lot about the role of Jesus Christ in a marriage and family, and how a family fits into the Big Picture. As I mentioned before, Kris looked so pretty, I cried a little when she walked in. They really look great together. I think there is a special kind of magic at a wedding where everyone knows there is a good match being made and the union has been anticipated. I like to think it was that way at our wedding (although the celebration in no way rivaled that bash thrown by Kristen’s parents) because it seemed like people were just having fun and truly celebrating.
There was a luncheon at Matta’s just down the street form the temple in the barrio. Bad neighborhood but cute restaurant and great food. That was a good time. I think the highlight of the luncheon was my nephew Jake’s kilt-and-tam combo made by his mom. Sam is a Scotch/Irish-o-phile, and Jake looked like his little mascot.
I also talked about the nice reception at the Reflections place—the dinner, dancing, cake, décor, music, etc. was all wonderful and the new couple still looked great. Kristen’s bridesmaids greeted guests at the door and took digital pictures of them, which were quickly printed and put into a scrap-guest book in which you signed your picture as you left. That was a great idea and a really nice keepsake (and a security measure, too!).
I just wanted to write about two moments from the wedding day that still choke me up. The first was at Matta’s waiting for lunch. I was sitting across the room from Kristen’s mother, Susan, who was wrangling her granddaughter, Kyla. Kyla started touching some decorations and Susan started to reprimand her, “No, no—don’t touch, Krissy….,” and then she caught herself. “Oh, wait—you’re not Krissy! Krissy’s all grown up, silly grandma….” She picked up Kyla and her eyes welled up with tears. “Krissy’s all grown up and married….” She sort of rocked Kyla on her lap wistfully and wiped her tears and it made me cry, too. I think my grandma was sitting next to her, and Susan said to Gram, “They really do grow up too fast (sniffle)—thank heaven we get grandchildren!” Really, such a sweet little moment.
Let me preface the second moment by telling you that Sam does not dance. All his life he has made fun of people dancing. He would go to dances at the Institute in college to socialize, but he would sit in the back and mock people. Sam abhors dancing and board games as “stupid.” So I know he really, truly loves Kris because he danced with her at the reception! And not only did they look adorable out on the dance floor (well, Sam looked the whole day as if he were in a bit of a barbituate haze--mellow and happy), but Sam chose a beautiful, perfect song for her—“And I Love Her” by the Beatles. When the music began, the whole day and all the emotion caught up with me and I totally cried. And I don’t mean tear-and-sniffle-cry---it was turning into Ugly Cry. They were darling and dreamy out on the dance floor, and if I were Kristen, I would feel like a princess hearing those lyrics.
I give her all my love
A beautiful song, a beautiful night, and –hopefully- the beginning of a really beautiful life. Congratulations, again, Sam & Kristen. I am really proud of you for finally taking the plunge, Sammy, and wish you both every blessing.
Tuesday, January 10, 2006
...Laura just posted about being jealous of Lisa's new log bed, so I thought I would brag on my husband a bit and post a picture of the log bed he made for Sam (one of three he made this fall).
You're right-- he IS amazing.
PS: Mom made the quilt as a wedding gift--isn't it lovely? Sam & Kris scored!
In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season; the Christians called it 'Christmas' and went to church; the Jews called it 'Hanukkah' and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say 'Merry Christmas!' or 'Happy Hanukkah!' or (to the atheists) 'Look out for the wall!'
~Dave Barry, "Christmas Shopping: A Survivor's Guide"
I LOVE IT!!! Too bad I didn't find it in time for my rant last month....
Monday, January 09, 2006
Needless to say, we slept in on Thursday morning, but when I got up at 10am , our girls were beggin to swim n theHolm's VERY INVITING pool. Although it was around 70 degrees outside, it had been cold and the pool was only about 58 degrees, but the girls insisted so we let them put their feet in. SILLIES!
Sunday, January 08, 2006
More pictures coming soon--I am trying not to get sick, so I need to rest!
Monday, January 02, 2006
The wedding yesterday was beautiful. My former Stake Pres. performed the ceremony and Kristen looked so pretty that I cried when she walked into the sealing room--seriously, she looked like a gorgeous, glowing little angel! They were both just so sweet and tender all day long, my heart was happy to see my special brother finally sealed and happy. The reception last night at Reflections at the Buttes (near El Conquistador in Tucson) was gorgeous--one of the nicest I have attended--and there was dancing for 3 hours. People were totally getting down and celebrating and it was so fun. There were several kids under 10 years old who just danced all night and it was the cutest thing I have ever seen. I wish you had been with us! Rich took some beautiful pictures we will have to post. Part of me wants to fly Rich home and just stay here for a few weeks til winter goes away! I wasn't homesick until we drove across Tucson in Sunrise Road last night and I got a lump in my throat. I love it here, and I love my family so much! I am so grateful for growing up here and all the good people who helped me and loved me. The desert is so beautiful to me--I forgot how much I love it! But like you, my heart is firmly in two places now and the land and people in Livingston mean the world to me, too.
It has been a wonderful vacation and no one has gotten deathly ill, which is an accomplishment! We rang in the new year at my Aunt's house in Sierra Vista, AZ with a family party of games and yummy Mexican food and the best company (my new cousin in law Lacy ROCKS!). It was great. We will be home this coming weekend and I will resume posting. I plan to write a little more family and personal history here on this blog--it's kind of a resolution--so be prepared for that kind of stuff, along with my regular whining and venting and journaling. Enjoy the pictures of my cute bro and pretty new sister--they are beautiful people inside and out and I hope they are having fun in Scotland!
Again, Happy New Year to all y'all!
Sam in his kilt at the reception-- Kristen didn't want him to wear it, but mom had to get a picture of it. If only he had played his pipes!
Sam's Family: back-Amie Post, Matt Post, Jake Post, Audrey Post, Willy, Post, Stepdad mark Drews, Stepdad Jim Post, Grandpa Elrey, Grandma Elrey, Heidi Melin, Dad Jim Layton; front-Rich Melin, Jamie Melin with Addie Melin, Kristen the bride, Sam the groom, Marshall & Abby Drews (my youngest siblings), Mom Lyndo Drews, and paternal Grandma Muriel Layton.
Dear Loved Ones ...