Sunday, April 27, 2008

The wisdom of Glenn Beck

Tyler has been reading An Inconvenient Book by the LDS host of a popular CNN political show, Glenn Beck. He's read some parts to me and I thought they were very important and interesting.
The first chapter that he shared w/me is called "Body Image: the NEW Hotness" As far as I know, Beck is a convert and has a teenage daughter of his own, which in my opinion, gives him more credibility.

This is what I found most eye-opening, "Here's what a tabloid publisher Louisa Hatfield told Australia's newspaper The Age in 2006: 'Women are obsessed w/body image. They think about their body image more than they think about their children. They think about it even more than men think about sex--which is about a million times a day, isn't it?' " (page 63). Scary, isn't it? I would hate to think that I think about my body image more than my children....but after I heard this I started watching my thinking. And I noticed, Tyler thinks bcse I was aware that I was thinking about it, that I DO think about it a million times a day!!!! What about you? Think about it. I don't believe I am alone in this theory.

He writes, "You can find plenty of hot women hawking plenty of products, but it's what you won't find that's ultimately more important: an ounce of body fat on any of them. That's not reality, that's technology. Whatever fat of flaws these women have are conveniently Photoshopped or airbrushed out..." (page 60). I believe it! How many ads have you seen where legs are unevenly matched, look like they have pixelated coloring, or are obviously erased to look smaller around the waist, jaw, leg or anywhere else? Look closely and you'll see. Or don't, it's pretty obvious at a glance nowadays how perfect these models look.

And speaking of models, he shares a scary statistic:
"The average American model is 5'11" and 120 pounds. Slap a size 0 dress on a telephone pole, and you start to get a sense of what that's like. On the other hand, the average American woman is 5'4" and weighs 163 pounds" (page 64). I have a hard time believing that average for women. Are we really, on average, that short and wide? hm. But this is the scary thing about models: "After three runway models died of self-inflicted starvation, the fashion industry wasted no time imposing a public relations-driven guideline that any model walking the runways--from Madrid to Milan" they upped the weight standards which are still scarily below the average American woman's weight/height (BMI--"body mass index"). So they are taking a step in the right direction but....they are still sending the message that you need to be rail thin in order to look beautiful in your clothing.

But these last facts are the most disturbing. Did you know that "Cosmetic surgery is a now $15-billion-a-year industry in America"? and that 2/3 of the American's who get surgery's "make less than $50,000 a year"!!!!! No wonder people are in debt! But the most shocking statistic is that "hundreds of thousands of patients are between 13 and 19 years old" (page 64)!!!!!! Scary!!!! So he says instead of getting a set of wheels for graduations they are getting a set of something else. And the parents are letting them!?!?!?!

How can we help our teenage girls and sisters? "Here's something a fancy study did confirm: The more fashion magazines a girl is exposed to, the more likely she is to suffer from poor body image. I could've told you that for free" (page 62).

He states later, "How am I supposed to convince my teenage daughter that it's OK to have a little acne when no teenage celebrity has any? ...How can I convince my kids that eating a bowl of ice cream isn't a death sentence when so many of their friends believe that it is? I'm just one man--there's no way I can fight an entire culture...but that doesn't mean I won't try" (page 61-62).

His solution: Don't expose them to or allow "everything [he's] described" into your home and instead of playing video games or TV spend real time with your kids. Seems obvious, right? Well, for some, even those of us who try not to be "of this world" are tempted and/or allow that kind of stuff into our home. We talked a little about this at my last book club (Uglies--highly recommended). It addresses self image. It really made me think. The new Pretty town was this goal but it sounded more like the great and spacious building. Elder Holland said this, "In terms of preoccupation with self and a fixation on the physical, this is more than social insanity; it is spiritually destructive, and it accounts for much of the unhappiness women, including young women, face in the modern world. And if adults are preoccupied with appearance—tucking and nipping and implanting and remodeling everything that can be remodeled—those pressures and anxieties will certainly seep through to children. At some point the problem becomes what the Book of Mormon called “vain imaginations.” 11 And in secular society both vanity and imagination run wild. One would truly need a great and spacious makeup kit to compete with beauty as portrayed in media all around us. Yet at the end of the day there would still be those “in the attitude of mocking and pointing their fingers” as Lehi saw, 12 because however much one tries in the world of glamour and fashion, it will never be glamorous enough." (Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, Ensign, Nov 2005).

Susan W. Tanner said, "Moderation and appropriateness should govern all of our physical desires....I remember an incident in my home growing up when my mother’s sensitive spirit was affected by a physical indulgence. She had experimented with a new sweet roll recipe. They were big and rich and yummy—and very filling. Even my teenage brothers couldn’t eat more than one. That night at family prayer my father called upon Mom to pray. She buried her head and didn’t respond. He gently prodded her, “Is something wrong?” Finally she said, “I don’t feel very spiritual tonight. I just ate three of those rich sweet rolls.” I suppose that many of us have similarly offended our spirits at times by physical indulgences" (Susan W. Tanner, Ensign, Nov 2005). That makes me feel guilty, especially since I ate about 10 cookies today!

Elder Holland gave this address in October 2005. He said, "I plead with you young women to please be more accepting of yourselves, including your body shape and style, with a little less longing to look like someone else. We are all different. Some are tall, and some are short. Some are round, and some are thin. And almost everyone at some time or other wants to be something they are not! But as one adviser to teenage girls said: “You can’t live your life worrying that the world is staring at you. When you let people’s opinions make you self-conscious you give away your power. … The key to feeling [confident] is to always listen to your inner self—[the real you.]” 8 And in the kingdom of God, the real you is “more precious than rubies.” 9 Every young woman is a child of destiny and every adult woman a powerful force for good. I mention adult women because, sisters, you are our greatest examples and resource for these young women. And if you are obsessing over being a size 2, you won’t be very surprised when your daughter or the Mia Maid in your class does the same and makes herself physically ill trying to accomplish it. We should all be as fit as we can be—that’s good Word of Wisdom doctrine. That means eating right and exercising and helping our bodies function at their optimum strength. We could probably all do better in that regard. But I speak here of optimum health; there is no universal optimum size" (Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, Ensign, Nov 2005).

I can't say it better than that! I know I need to have a more positive self image. And my husband is good about letting me know that he loves me, even though I don't look like I did on our wedding day. And I realize that the more often I call myself "fat" that Samuel and Jocelyn will start thinking it about me too. And then, in turn, Jocelyn will look at me in a bad light and want not to be like me. Everything we do and say is noticed by others, especially girls. And it is so important that we maintain a positive body image. That doesn't mean we need to eat salads every night (I read an article about a woman who was anorexic, her son noticed that salads were all she ate for dinner....then he started noticed that she was also unhealthily thin). But we can exercise in front our children. Samuel and Jocelyn love to lift small cans of vegetables and fight over my exercise band. And I try to make it look enjoyable instead of painful. Enjoy sweet treats but don't scarf them down. Present a healthy snack, like raisins or apples, before fruit snacks or cookies. I need to try that too. Eat an apple before lunch and you'll eat less. Drink more water...Of course, I am writing this more for myself. I need to convince myself that I am beautiful and that I don't need to eat every rich and sweet thing placed before me.
I hope this information was as interesting to you as it was to me.

Recipe of the week

Check out a great cookie recipe on my other blog!

Friday, April 18, 2008

American Idol

I am addicted to American Idol this season. I've never really been so addicted to it before but I watch each week. Here are my thoughts on this season. The last 10 contestants have been really good. Good, in that they are all good singers. And good, that they are all good, happy, smiley, decent people. They have been very supportive and kind to each other. They have been good to the judges and to the audience. And it's not just the "kiss butt" kind of good. They are all genuniely humble. I like that. Plus they all dream big and never boast about making it this far. Perhaps it's because there are two LDS people left? Who knows. But I am happy it's a more positive this go around. There are only 6 singers left.

After reading some comments left on the website, I am probably not correct but this is how I wish it would happen. It's hard though. I think the top two will be David Cook and Murray's own David Archuleta. They have the most consistent and strongest voices. They always choose good songs and the audience loves them. The two that I like the least are Jason Castro and Syesha. I like Jason's voice but I can't get over how he looks. He needs a haircut and lessons on facial relaxation while performing. Plus his pants are too slim fitting and he wears these same vintage 70's shoes every week. Syesha has a beatufil voice but it is nothing new and original. She always chooses songs to big for her voice and personality. She's nice to look at but I don't think she should go on. Brooke and Carly are right on the verge as well. Brooke has a unique voice. It reminds me a female version of James Taylor. She's got a folksy style. But she is not a powerhouse voice. She is sweet and pretty and very talented, especially with other musical instruments but she makes small technical errors and she's not completely unique. However, she is all around talented, like I said before, and she does choose good songs that suit her voice and style. But she goes out there and makes risks and mistakes. And people and the judges like that. She doesn't let it get her down, at least not on stage. I love Carly's voice but she doesn't give herself enough credit. She is very talented and can sing several types of music from rock to pop to folk. I think she is beautiful despite her odd outfits (though that is improving) and dark make-up (Samuel was scared of her a few weeks ago...but she has toned it down a bit) and her tattoos (she and her boyfriend! yuck!) but it's her voice that is most important.

I don't actually vote because I am usually putting kids to bed plus I can't use all our minutes and we don't have texting. And I wouldn't know who to vote for anyway. My brother-in-law Grant has this fan call thing that keeps track of the numbers. Plus he plugs his cell and land line and hits redial or something to get as many votes in as possible. He's a little obsessed :0

But it'll be interesting to see what happens. It's not over for at least 6 weeks....that's a long time. I don't know who is going to win at this point but it's fun to watch them progress and grow.

You can also log on to to vote for the finale's song. People submitted original songs and they widdled it down to 20. You can go and rate them and the top one will be sung by the winner. There is a BYU grad who wrote one called "You Believed in me" . I actually didn't like his song the most but I gave it a 10 anyway. Go BYU Alumni! But song #2, called "You can do anything", has to have been written by an LDS person. It says things like "anchor of truth," "stand tall" and "still small voice" Hello! So, I gave that one a high score too, although the music was a bit cheesy. So if you have 10-15 minutes and you care, go and vote!

Yay for American Idol!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Book Tag

These next few weeks are going to be a bit more crazy than usual. This week I need to work, complete a special scrapbook page as a surprise for a former beloved bishop. (I'm not making the book, it's a combined effort on ward members). I need to finish reading my book club book Uglies. I need to start and complete Mother's Day gifts, including some for myself :) And then next week is BYU graduation for 3 of my in-laws. We'll have both sides of the family in times. It'll be a blast, like a mini reunion. Eating out, BBQ's, long lines of people in caps and gowns, annoyed and tired children, FAMILY! Yay! OH!!! And I just remembered that Samuel has to give his first talk in primary!!! I've never done that before. Melissa and Rachel, you may need to help/remind me :) And I cannot forget to wish my sis-in-law and mother-in-law Happy Birthday's either.

So, it'll be a good few weeks. Today I felt like such a good mom. I played with Samuel. I watched like 4 episodes of TLC's "Jon and Kate plus 8" last night and felt inspired. Kate, the mom, reminds me a lot of my friend Brittany. Really organized, great sense of humor, and just a great mom who can handle 8 kids under the age of 7 (one set of twins and one set of sextuplets!!!) They have decided to, as a couple, go out w/each kid alone. They get to have a special day w/their parents, completely alone. This is naturally a big deal for these kids since there are so many of them. They don't ever get undivided attention. So anyway, I decided to play play dough w/Samuel today. He loved it and he so much more calm, bcse I was paying attention to just him, completely undivided. No computer, no Jocelyn, no cleaning, etc. It was fun! I was distracted a bit and my mind kept going back to the computer but fortunately the internet wasn't working and so I couldn't use it anyway! But I thought it was really valuable time.

Well, my same friend Brittany tagged me. This is really simple.
The instructions for this tag are as follows:

1. Pick up the nearest book (at least 123 pages) or whichever you are reading at the time
2. Turn to page 123
3. Find the 5th sentence
4. Post the 5th sentence on your blog
5. Tag 5 people

I am reading Uglies written by Scott Westerfeld "The thought of what she must look like was too much."

I tag Mica, Melissa E., Leanna, Leslie, and Charlene!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


I went to Richfield, UT, Marci and Alex's historic home, this weekend to see my new niece, Eva (pronounced ee-va). She is adorable, of course, as most babies are. But it reminded me that I don't want to have a baby anytime soon. I was glad to help Marci get some sleep as I felt the pain of sleep deprivation all over again. Eva is one of those "sleep on the mommy's chest" babies. She won't sleep easily anywhere else, at least, not yet. But I was able to help Marci by cleaning, taking care of Olivia, her oldest (by letting her play w/Samuel and boss Joc around :) and bathing and curling her hair too), and cooking. And I was able to stay up till 2 am talking w/my mom which was great. And I got to hold the little Eva and kiss her head while she slept on my chest. BUT I didn't realize I was sick at the time and hope I did not infect her!!!!

Here are some pics from the weekend! The kids did not get much sleep that weekend, as you can tell! But they loved it!

Olivie and Eva

And here is the new sleepy mom and Jocelyn guarding the babies door.

Don't forget to read the one below too.


I just wanted to let you know that, despite my downs, I do have ups. I don't like to read depressing blogs like mine lately. And so I've decided to share w/you what I am grateful for.

1. chocolate
2. movies
3. when Samuel says, "Bill the Bodder" (instead of "Bob the Builder")
4. Jocelyn's smile
5. Tyler saying "thank you"
6. My HUGE extended family and the fact that I know all (85+) of my first cousins first names and their spouses. I LOVE my family. They are a huge support to me.
7. for my body. yes, at times, I look in the mirror and dream of having a much leaner and sexier one. But I am grateful that it works! And that I can SEE it!
8. prescription strength deodorant
9. the fact that I just finished folding 2 weeks worth of laundry
10. my job
11. my immediate family
12. My ever supporting friends
13. when my kids go to bed
14. prayer

things that I love about myself:
1. I am frugal
2. I like to serve
3.I know how to cook good food (oh, look at all of those double "o"'s)
4. I can write
5. I inspire
6. my eyes
7. my hair, my "one beauty" (name that movie !)
8. I am a wife
9. I am a sister
10. I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day-Saints
11. I imagine
12. I dream
13. I am a daughter of God
14. I am a mother

Now it's your turn! What are you grateful for and what do you love about yourself? I want to read it on your blogs! :)

Monday, April 7, 2008

sick, anger management, eBay, Conference

Well, I woke up sick today. Actually, it started on Saturday with a runny nose, hoping it was allergies. Then on Sunday w/an added sore throat and then by Sunday night my body ached and I woke up (or did I ever get any sleep?) sick. Today I spent the day on the couch w/water, my pillow, my down comforter, a box of kleenex, jammies, and the TV and trying not to feel bad for myself. Tyler was so good to me and picked up the house (which is already a disaster tonight), took the kids out so I could sleep and fed them lunch. It was great. But ugh, I hate being sick. And then that brings me to my next subject. Anger management.

I told Samuel this morning, politely, that I was sick and to please not jump on me. Well, he was good until he got sick of watching 2 hours of TV and starting doing it again. And by the end of the day, he having no nap, and being a total pill, I blew up at him. several times. Over every little thing. I had had it. But I say that everyday! How can I control my temper? Any suggestions? I did put myself in time out so that I wouldn't literally strangle my kids. But then they started making another mess of throwing all of the stuffed animals at my bathroom door!!!!! AAAAAAHHH.

Moving on....Have any of you tried selling children's clothing on eBay and been successful (in other words...made and not lost money?) at it? Is it dishonest to have Tyler bid on my item from his account so the price goes up and/or I don't have to settle by selling it to someone else for only $1 and consequently losing money? I don't think it's illegal, but I sort of feel bad about it. But then I've also been tempted to bid on other people's items (and set my max bid for under $5) just to get that person a bid and add benefit them. (but then if I did get stuck w/it, they wouldn't make very much and would have to sell it to me when, if no one bid, they could just re-list it or keep the item, and not lose as much on it...does that make sense?) or have any of you bought NWT kids clothes? What do you look for? What catches your eye? I think my listings are pretty good and don't understand why I am not getting more bids (maybe bcse I only have 13 feedback...pretty low). Any help would be lovely.

And lastly....General Conference! I loved it! I was a little worried bcse I had the kids to myself sat morning and they were off the wall. Like Samuel can sense the spirit or something and it makes him hyper instead of reverent. And he could sense it was important and that I really wanted to watch it and so he goes bonkers. I liked the first day for the solemn assembly and being able to sustain all of the Church leadership again. And I also was called to repentance several times. But then I LOVED Elder Ballard's talk at the last session about new moms! We were all in the car driving home so we really had to listen (over Jocleyn's screaming to get out of her carseat) and pay attention. And I was very touched by his compliments and sincerity. I was almost in tears (I don't like to cry in front of people, a bad habit that I hold in) with the feeling of love and support in this great work we are doing as mothers. And Tyler really appreciated it too! And I love that he made a simple list about how to be better! So to the point! He knows us too well! But not all women are list people, but I am so I loved it all the more!

Tomorrow...I hope to feel better! And I will post about my new niece!

Friday, April 4, 2008

The ventings and over analyzations of me!

First of all, my brother Alex and his wife, Marci had their third baby girl this week! She weighed 8 lbs 7 oz and was 21" long! She was born 4 days late! And they named her Eva Marie! Congratulations to you both!!! I will post pictures after I go and visit her!

Well, Southwest airlines was having great flights ($59 one way) from Seattle to SLC earlier this week. And I just saw that British Airways is having great prices from select cities to London right now! For example, now through the end of May you can get a round trip ticket for about $600!!!! OH, how I wish we could afford to go right now!!!!! That makes me cringe knowing that! SO if any of you were planning a trip, do this one!

So, I went to a "mom's club" at the church yesterday and I was nearly an hour late. I wasn't planning on being that late, though I did schedule to be there after it had already started. Well, a few minutes after I arrived people started leaving! And I said, "Oh, you're leaving?" like I was sad to see them go. Well, then two of my friends, we're like "um, you did get here late". That made me feel pretty stupid for saying that then. Plus I was wearing my tall black leather boots which look like horse-riding boots, but I was wearing them over my jeans, trying to look fashionable....but my body doesn't exactly lend itself to that at times. And so then, I thought to myself, "maybe it's the boots! Maybe they think I look funny!" And then I remembered that right before I left for the church, one of my kids, while my back was turned, knocked over this cheap Ikea full bodied mirror. Luckily, it was still in the plastic bcse it completely shattered and I only found one small piece of glass! So, then I kept thinking...7 years bad luck. oh, no!

And the day before this, I was riding Trax up to SLC to do some family history. Well, I had been using Tyler's free student pass...and I got caught. It got confiscated and luckily I rode off with just a warning. ouch! I felt really badly though. Not only bcse Tyler no longer has his pass (which he hasn't used as of late) but I felt like such a criminal! Is that going to go on my record? sigh....

Plus I think I am setting myself up for a bad reputation. For the last 3 book clubs I have not finished the book before the book club night (and usually do right after). And I have admitted that too. So now everyone probably thinks I am a procrastinator and they cannot trust me. Sort of like those people who say they'll call you and then they never do! (I've been guilty of that too!) So, I hope I am just over analyzing...

Well, I really am happy. And I like to over analyze here they were!
And I am excited for General Conference this weekend!!!