Blog Archives

That Time of Year

December 12, 2008
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It’s that time of year again. The season to be jolly. The season to celebrate the birth of Christ. The season to eat sugar cookies and fudge. The season of the ward Christmas program.

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Is One Date Enough?

August 1, 2008
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I’m thinking about weddings a lot recently. Probably because I’ve been going to lots of them. Many friends and family members are getting married, announcing engagements, and thinking about marriage. ‘Tis the season. It’s led me to think a lot about the peculiar way we “peculiar people” find and marry our mates. Here are some things I’ve noticed (in a totally non-scientific, non-sociological, strictly-observational way):

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Active in the Church

June 18, 2008
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My 21-year-old son, Ethan, was home from college for a couple weeks this summer. On Sunday when he came to church with us, our bishop asked him, “So, are you still active in the Church?” He asked this question in the presence of several other people, then proceeded to give a mini-talk on what it felt like to have a testimony. My son was put off by the conversation, as were the other people in the group.

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Surviving Early-Morning Seminary

May 27, 2008
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My third son just graduated from seminary. My three sons have all gone to early-morning seminary. They stagger to class at 6:15 in the morning, bleary-eyed and yawning. They’ve all graduated, but two of them did significant makeup assignments to “get credit.” My last son made up 92 days, which is something of a record in our stake.

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An Hour of Peace and Rest

May 14, 2008
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I usually enjoy going to church. I look forward to it, despite talks that are occasionally less-than-dazzling, overly-perfumed women in the pew in front of me, and the family in the third row that refuses to take their baby out, even when she screams during the sacrament. There’s one pet peeve, though, that irritates me every week. Drives me crazy. Every week without fail. The noise level in the chapel before the meeting starts. Sometimes I feel more like I’m at a football game than at church.

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Raising the Bar

April 30, 2008
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Is it just my imagination, or are more missionaries returning home early? Seems like this used to be a rare event, spoken about in the same whispery voice people use to tell you someone has an embarrassing disease. Now, it happens with some regularity. In my stake in the past few years, seven or eight missionaries have returned early (and those are just the ones of which I’m aware). When I’ve asked around, my friends and relatives in other stakes report the same thing.

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The Evil of Flip Flops and Pants

April 19, 2008
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We had a Relief Society lesson a couple weeks ago on appropriate dress. A few clear conclusions came from the discussion. Women’s pants are evil and flip-flops are of the devil. Denim and the chapel do not mix under any circumstance. And pantyhose make you more spiritual. I’m stretching a bit. But just a little.

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Women’s Retreats — Slumber Parties for Grownups

March 14, 2008
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I always loved a good slumber party when I was a kid. The unlimited unhealthy snacks, eardrum-splitting music and endless giggling held enormous charm to my 13-year-old self. But it was the element of “naughtiness” that really appealed to me. The rumors of spiked punch and illicit visits by boys. The silly games, risqué jokes and secrets shared at midnight. I still like all those things and find an outlet for them at retreats for Mormon women. (Okay, no spiked punch. And these days, there’s a firm No Boys Allowed sign tacked to the door). 

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New Rules for Church Music

February 8, 2008
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My favorite part of any church service is the music. Even when the music is poorly done — which all too often it is — it has power to inspire, teach, and heal. That said, I would like some changes to the music section of the handbook. If I were in charge, here are the rules I’d implement:

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Defending the Faith

January 17, 2008
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I’ve never been very political. It’s not that I’m a total slacker – I always read the platforms of both parties and I keep up on presidential candidates’ basic positions. I have preferences about who should win. Mostly, though, I’m disgusted by the divisive nature of our partisan system and my interest is politics is a casual affair. That’s all changed. This year, I am a political junkie. I watch all the debates and follow the polls the same way the wealthy follow stock prices. I have strong opinions on the merits of the major candidates and I know the…

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Snack Time

January 12, 2008
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My favorite time in the nursery was snack time. Oh, it’s not what you might think. I didn’t love snack time because I could snitch a stray goldfish cracker or vanilla wafer, although those were attractive benefits, especially on fast Sunday. But I liked nursery snack time because it gave me something to do. Something official and concrete. A noble purpose and goal. During snack time, I took the shiny silver pitcher and plodded to the drinking fountain. If I timed it right, and walked really slowly, that could last a good three or four minutes. If I was lucky,…

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