Saturday, May 24, 2008

Ha Ha!

So, hopefully I've told everyone that wants to hear it in person because here goes: I'm pregnant! Ta-da!! Baby will be due Jan-Feb-ish next year. I waited until the first trimester was over last time, and I don't feel any need to do that this time. I'll just have to post if anything adverse happens as well. My older sister, Elizabeth decided not to tell anyone until after the first trimester with her first pregnancy, just in case anything happened. And it did. She miscarried and she said it was even worse to go through a miscarriage and not to have anyone know why you are so upset than to have to tell people that you are no longer pregnant. I think I would probably feel the same way. So here is the announcement. Happy days!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mother's Day

I love my husband. Yesterday morning he made me breadfast in bed, which is probably fairly standard for most husbands on Mother's day. It included milk, orange juice, and hot chocolate, as well as a flower picked from the front yard in a vase. What was suprising and wonderful was that while I was eating, he seranaded me while playing the guitar. This was probably one of the most romantic things he has ever done for me. Oh, he can be very romantic when he tries, but it is not common.

I love my husband's singing voice. We sing in the ward (church) choir together, and he'll sing silly songs sometimes, but he doesn't ever sing to me. I asked him at one point if he would ever sing love songs to me, and as an example requested Annie's Song, by John Denver (You Fill Up My Senses). He said he wouldn't mind doing that, but didn't know all the words. So I found the lyrics and printed them for him. That was over a year ago, probably over two.

Then out of the blue for Mother's day, while our baby was still sleeping, he floored me with not only the complete song, but guitar accompanyment. Kevin doesn't really play the guitar. The only reason we have one around is because we are babysitting it for my brother on a mission. He had secretly pulled it out and taught himself this song. It thoroughly melted me.

The other thing Kevin gave me for mother's day was the oportunity to sit and write blog entries. That takes time, which I usually don't have. He didn't bother me, and he took care of Willow, and it was wonderful. *sigh* contented wife.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Some Willow pics

Because someone admired my baby garb, pride compelled me to post a few more complete pictures of it:

And here is the best picture of the curls I got:


I have recently read several disparaging opinions about the word blog. (For the record, not one of the 8 entries returned by a search on [where else would you look up the definition of blog?] rendered the spelling 'blog, although each did cite its origin as a shortened from of weblog.) I would like to state for the record that I like the word blog. I find it satisfyingly suitable and even onomatopoetic. What else would you call a repository for any and all to disgorge the half-digested ruminations of the mind. The place where they go, "Blaugh." and up it all comes. It is, of course, a blog. So I also enjoy all variants of the word: blogger, blogging, blogical. This is good. This is a good thing.

Promptings and Testimonies

Inspired by Thora's blog and Fast and Testimony meeting last Sunday, I wanted to sare some of my own recent thoughts.

The Holy spirit speaks to and prompts every person in a way that they can recognize. It does not feel the same to everyone. I know what the urging of the Spirit feels like to me. It is sort of an insistent hollowness in the pit of my stomach that reaches a strangle hold up through my chest as it gets stronger until I finally figure out what it is asking me to do and do it. The most frequent circumstance in which I know that I have felt such promptings is during Fast and Testimony meeting at church.

For those of you unfamiliar with the practices of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the LDS Church), the first Sunday of every month is set aside as a day of fasting for its members, and time is given during the worship services that day for members of the congregation to rise and share their testimonies, or spiritual witnesses, of the things of the gospel they know to be true.

Often, during this meeting, I will feel the familiar niggling that suggests that I, too should share what I know. Sometimes I would feel a little afraid of standing in front of some hundred people or worry that I had nothing of value to say (no recent edifying experiences or intelligent insights or amusing anecdotes to share). Unfortunately I was often successful at staying in my seat. However, I don't think I can actually call that success of any sort. Though I succeeded at doing the thing I was trying to do, the thing I was trying to do was in itself a failure at what I should do.

I have since come to realize that I actually like standing and talking in front of large groups of people, and through counsel from church leaders I have realized that the most important thing that can be shared in a testimony is simple declaration of faith in the fundamentals of the Gospel: The divinity of Jesus Christ and His Atonement, the divine calling and direction of the leaders of the church, The truth of the Book of Mormon and Bible, the validity of the restoration of the fullness of the Gospel and the Priesthood in the latter days. Since I always know these, I always have something to say if I feel moved to share my testimony.

I have had one rational objection--that if I took time, it would mean someone else would not get to speak--that was often valid in wards I have been in previously (especially at BYU, where there is a mass uprising as soon as time is turned over to the congregation and people pour down to the front, to the seats reserved for those wanting to speak. If you don't get up and move in the first two minutes, all hope is lost, and not even everyone who went up to the front will be able to be accomodated in the time allowed--ususally more than 30 minutes). However, since leaving the Y, I have not been in a testimony meeting where we did not, at some point, sit for at least an entire minute in silence wondering who would get up next. As soon as we hit one of those points, I know my "I'm taking time from someone else" argument is entirely invalid.

So I have had relatively little trouble following promptings to testify recently. However, just the last couple of months, I have had a new problem doing so: Feeling like people hear too much from me and will get annoyed that I am always taking time in the meeting. It is amazing the ability of the Natural Man (a mortal's carnal and unholy tendancies) and his mentor Satan to find an argument against righteousness to adapt to any angle of action (or inaction). I know that I have felt a little embarassed sometimes for people in my ward (the congregation I worship with every Sunday) who appear at the pulpit every month to share their testimony, which often sounds exactly the same each time. I knew I would feel embarassed for myself if I were in their situation; embarassed that people would think that I am so full of myself I believe they need to hear from me every month.

But fear is the opposite of faith, and as I remember this, I realize that those doubts and demurs are a lack of faith. And I realize that I have ample faith to believe that if I am feeling prompted by the Spirit, it is what God wants me to do. Who am I to tell God that no one needs to hear from me again when he says they do? And who am I to fear offending men when I risk offending God by refusing to follow his direction? Besides, offence taken by men is entirely their problem, not mine (as long as the purpose of my actions is not to give it). With these thoughts in mind, it was suprizingly simple to stand and speak to everyone, even for the third time in a row last week.

However, as I started to feel the familiar nudge and the familiar nudge back of doubts to be conquered, I prayed within myself, "OK, Father, I will do it. But please let me know this time what I have to say that is so important." Previously, unless there was something particularly in mind accompanying the prompting to share, I would follow the councel in Doctrine and Covenants 84:85 "Neither take ye thought beforehand what ye shall say... and it shall be given you in the very hour..." and walk up to the front and wait for my mouth to be filled.

This time, I did not jump up right away (though I did pay attention to make sure I wouldn't miss my oportunity by waiting too long), but sat and pondered on my recent experiences and blessings from the Lord. I watched my 1 year old daughter, Willow, raise her water bottle to her ear and say, "Hi-i!" with exactly the same sing-song inflection I greet her every day. And I started down a path of thoughts that I eventually shared from the pulpit: I am amazed at this baby that loves so much to mimic her parents. She has recently started folding her arms when it is time to pray, just like we do. Oftentimes, we can see in her mimicry that she has no understanding of why we do the things we do. Ever since she has been old enough to notice the telephone, she will grab anything that she can heft with her little hand and hold it up to her ear and talk to it. I have seen her use everything from a tape measure to a piece of broccoli.. And thinking about it today, I was reminded of the scripture in Moses, quoting Adam when he was asked by an angel why he offered sacrifice to the Lord. He said simply, "I know not, save the Lord commanded me." Willow doesn't really know why we hold this little things up to our ear, but it is obviously very important to us, so it is very important to her. I wish that I could be more like that in my obedience to God's commandments and individual direction for my life. Never to ask "why" before being willing to comply. Don't get me wrong, I do believe it is important seek to understand everything, but comprehension should not be a precondition to submission. I am so grateful to be a mother, and for what motherhood teaches me about myself and my relationship to my Heavenly Father. I know that God loves me. I know that Jesus is the Christ. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and was directed by Him to restore the true church in this day. I know that Thomas S. Monson, president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a prophet of God alive to day. I know that he recieves direction and councel from the Lord for us. I know that God has ordained families to bless and uplift us, to be a place where we can learn and be loved and children can be raised in a stable and wholesome home. I know that the Atonement of Christ is available to each of us to make up for our sins and give us the ability to be perfected. I know that the grace of the Lord is available on a daily basis to make up for our current imperfection. I love God with all my heart. I say this in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Absurd Sorrows

I just wrote the title for this post, and then I thought I would check to make sure it was still true before I told you what it was. And lo and behold, it was no longer absolutely true! What it was is that every time I come to my blog, which is not very old, especially when I only get to it about once a week (and of course time doesn't pass for a blog when you aren't checking it, right?), when I come to my blog and scan down the posts, there are never any comments. And I am always sad about that, which is absurd. It is absurd because I haven't told anyone about my blog except my husband and my sister, who lives upstairs, so I tell her everything. I was sort of waiting until I had something of value said before making anouncements. I was hoping that the last post would be something of value, but I had to stop before it was very done.

But then I looked at it just now and Thora, my dear lovely new mother of 2, had found me of her own discovery (OK, I had posted a comment to her blog and it had a link to my blog, but that means she read my comment and I love her)! So now I am absurdly happy. And maybe if she was happy to find my blog, even though I had not mentaly reached the point of being ready to make it public, maybe others will want to know about it now, too. Maybe I could tell people...

But the original gist of this post was going to be something along the lines of "Aren't people so weird how they get depressed about things not happening when they never did the absolutely natural precurser to them happeneing (i.e. telling people about a blog they want to see comments on, or ever holding a conversation with a boy they want to ask them out, etc).

And this is a gramatical asside because I have a question perhaps someone can clarify for me--
When using parentesis, I think the proper punctuation is to put the period after the closing parenthesis if the parenthetical comment was included in the foregoing statment and not a sentence unto itself. If it comes after a complete sentence and is initself a complete sentence, then a period would go after the preceeding sentence and before the closing perenthesis at the end of the parenthetical sentence. Now this is my question: What do you do if you have a parenthetical situation of the first order, but the either the punctuation appropriate to the end of the parenthetical statement does not match that for the end of the entire sentence or you end your parenthetical statement with an abreviation or some other such thing that requires a period immediately following it? As in (etc.) or (etc.). or (etc). This perplexes me every time I run accross it. The end.

And yes, people are wierd. And I like them that way.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

This Time--With Pictures!

Contrary to all appearances, I actually started this blog to allow my friends to keep abreast of the events and emotions of my life. So here we go with the first real informational post:

My life so far:
I am married to a divine hunk of manhood (or manwiefhood), Kevin Vezzani. The foregoing description is entirely for his edification and delight. He really is my favorite person. I can't imagine a man more suited to me. I love him.

I have a heart-wrenchingly beautiful daughter, Willow Liliana, who is very good at being 1 year old. She likes to mimic her parents and is very good at melting down.

And this is all I have time for before church today.

Elusive Curls

Have you ever tried to get a good picture of the back of a small child's head? It is nearly impossible. Unless you just happen to find them utterly engrossed in something and sneak up from behind, but how often does that actually happen with a one-year-old? Especially when you have a digital camera that gives off an annoying little beep when it focusses, no matter how many settings you turn off. Willow knows that beep, and it will break her concentration on even the most all-consuming distractions. Immediately the head will whip around and spoil the darling shot of curl barely beginning to form at the nape of her neck.

I am excrucatingly fond of these curls, but can never seem to get a good picture of them. They are not very big, but they are mine, at least, they are Willow's who is mine insofar as I am her mother. But Willow doesn't even know they exist, let alone their melting power of cuteness, so they are also mine because I appreciate them. If I ever do get that shot, I'll post it.

The Smell of Yogurt

So, I just had one of those moments where I did something without really thinking about it and afterward thought, "Wow, that was an absurd thing to do that never would have happened to a non-mom."

I am sitting at the computer reading other people's blogs (hence why my first thought was to blog this) with Willow on my lap. I suddenly inhale the delicious fragrance of strawberry yogurt (I'm fasting, OK!) and look down to see that Willow has discovered the abandoned foil lid of an empty yogurt container. I remove it from her mouth asking (as if I didn't know), "What do you have?" Then I put it to my nose, inhale deeply (actually because I wanted to), and say, "Mmmmmm! Yummy!" and put the lid back in hermouth.

Shortly after, Willow dropps it on the floor. I guess things aren't as interesting when Momma approves.