Saturday, June 28, 2014

If I Was at Full Slayer Power, I'd be Punning Right About Now

As Ward Clerk, Drek is in on all the bishopric meetings so he knew what my knew calling was going to be weeks before I did and was even in on the discussions. Last week at church Drek and I met with a member of the bishopric for my new calling.  Drek sat next to me.

I am the new Personal Progress Leader and Young Women Assistant Camp Director.

I actually hit Drek. Seriously? Young Women camp? ME?

I must have this calling for a reason. I'm just not sure what it is. Maybe it's to get over my intense dislike of Young Women camp. Or to replace my bad memories of  Young Women with good memories.

After spending a few hours looking up Personal Progress ideas on Pinterest I've decided that my number challenge will be my lack of ability to craft. I am just not crafty enough to hold this calling. I also discovered that for some unknown reason, everything to do with Personal Progress must involve a pun.  Are we prepping these girls for their divine roll as superheros? Fighting evil is good, fighting evil while interjecting the occasional snappy pun?  Even better.

It's going to be great. The current Young Women leader is amazing. The Camp Director is amazing. Supporting them will be no problem at all.

Prepare yourselves for some future posts about Personal Progress puns and crafts!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

This is a Gift That, As Sisters, We Claim

I’ve been given a few hints that my calling as Compassionate Service Leader is about to come to an end. As long as my new calling isn't in Young Women, or Scouts, I'm happy about any change. Compassionate Service Leader has been by far the most stressful calling I have ever had. I feel like I'm never doing enough and it's always on my mind. At the same time, I know God has looked after me this whole time. I know he has directed me. I only hope I've done enough.

I wanted to share this last story:

As Compassionate Service Leader I feel a need to serve the sisters in the ward and protect them from asking too much. The chain of service is this: First to help is Self, then family, then visiting teachers, then Compassionate Service committee and only if there is still more help needed that no one in that chain can handle, I  send out an email to everyone asking for more help.  This has worked really well for me, and a lot of that is because we have some really great visiting teachers in my ward.

But, there is always that one companionship. We had an emergency a few months back, and the visiting teachers not only didn't know about it, they didn't care. They were too busy, too tired, too...unwilling? When I asked them to provide a meal they wanted me to send out an email to the sisters in the ward asking someone else to do it. After several emails back and forth of me trying to explain the chain of responsibility  I finally gave up. I took on their burden on myself  and saw the emergency through to its happy ending. I came away from the experience with some resentment and a feeling of having to do everything myself.

It was right after that a new Relief Society presidency was called, and the one person on my committee  on which I relied so heavily was called as the Relief Society president. Her position on my committee was not replaced, and I was left with an even bigger feeling of having to do it all myself.

A few weeks later I was supposed to take dinner to two different families in the ward on the same night. It seems in the year I have had this calling there is rarely a week that goes by when I am not making a meal for two families, but rarely is it on the same day. Anyway, of course that is the day Alexa fell and we went to the ER for stitches. As I watched the time pass, I realized I might be stuck in the ER all day and not have time to make the dinners. As I thought about it, I decided to text the new Relief Society president that I was in the ER with Alexa, and I might not be able to take dinner to these two families, but I didn't yet know. After a few more hours, I hadn't gotten a response. It was then I decided to call a sister on my committee. She is a single mother who works during the day. She took on herself the responsibility of calling the widows in the ward every single month to check up on them. Because she does that, I had never asked her to do anything else until this emergency. She didn't answer, so I left a voice message. As soon as I hung up I realized she probably couldn't hear a word I said because Alexa was screaming the whole time. Feeling there was nothing else to do, I just waited.

We got home from the ER around four in the afternoon. I started the dinners and then texted the Relief Society president that I was home, Alexa was fine, and I was starting on the dinners. She instantly texted back that another sister was on her way to deliver one of the dinners. She said she didn't register that there were two dinners. I told her it wasn't a problem and I that I was delighted to only have to take one dinner. Surprised that the one dinner was already done, I then texted the sister on my committee to ignore any voice mails she got from me. She instantly called me. She said she had been in Wal Mart when she got my message and couldn't understand anything I was saying, but could tell I was under some stress. At that moment, she saw someone else in our ward wandering through the store and had her listen to the message. The only thing they could pick out was a name. She assumed I was asking her to take dinner over to this family so she picked up a frozen dinner in Wal Mart and drove it over to their house!

The amazing thing was that in both the text and the voice message, I mentioned BOTH families that needed dinners, but both the sisters only picked up on one of the names. Both families got dinners without any coordination. I was amazed. It was a true miracle. It was God telling me I am always looked after. I don't have to do everything myself, and after I am not the Compassionate Service Leader, other people will take up the burden and everything will be fine.

I am so grateful for this whole experience, but I will be very relieved when I get my new calling, even if it is in Young Women. Just as long it has nothing to do with Young Women camp. Or Scouts.

Saturday, June 07, 2014

Why Else Would She Be Acting Like Such a b-i-t-c-h? Willow, I Think We're All a Little Too Old to be Spelling Things Out. A Bitcuh?

Friday night we babysat for a family with a bunch of kids right around Ash's age. For their family, Friday night is movie night, so we decided to pick a children's movie off of Netflix. 

"Make sure you check the rating to make sure it doesn't have any bad words." says five-year-old girl. 

"Yeah, like 'Stupid'" says three-year-old girl. 

"Or the F-word." says seven-year-old boy (with very foul languaged friends)  

"Fupid?" Ash asks. 

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Due to Education Cutbacks, the Following Presidents Will Not Be Taught: Buchanan, Pierce, Carter, Bush, Bush...

The decision of schooling for my children weighs heavily on my mind. At the start of the 2013 school year, after an entire summer of indecision, I finally organized a little Preschool for Ash instead of enrolling her in any of the available preschools. I talked with several of the moms in our ward and soon I had six little girls at my house. Originally the idea was to do a sort of Joy school where the moms took turns teaching, but that never actually panned out. 

Once a week for three hours I would have six little princesses over at my house. We did circle time. We had art projects. We did science and math and always read a story. We did dance and music and singing and had a lot of outside time (Which, thanks to Drek's amazing backyard skills, meant swings, a sandbox, a playstructure, a slide, and later in the year...a trampoline!).  Over the year the girls learned the days of the week, the months of the year, the lifecycle of a frog and a butterfly and became quite proficient in basic addition. 

But the best part of our little Preschool were the comments the girls made. We had two girls in our group named L. As Ash said "We have both kinds of Ls." 
I started out just calling them "L" and "Little L" but that became too confusing. After one week I called out "L!" and one of them turned around and said "L? Or Other L?" Which cracked me up. After that I did what had been done in my elementary school: first name followed by the first inital of the last name; L H. and L N.  This worked great. Two weeks into this nickname I asked the girls if they knew why I called them L H. and L N. "Because those are your favorite letters?" "Because that's how you spell L?" "Because L H.'s favorite letter is H?" 

Wednesday was out last day of Preschool. We ended with a Teddy Bear Picnic. It was adorable. 

I'm glad it's summer, but it also starts the whole question up again: What am I going to for Ash's schooling next year?