I’ve got family in town for a few days, so I’m pulling in the shingle until next week. Happy Snow Day everyone!
Month: January 2008
Random Crappy Darkness
We’re buried in snow. It’s tough looking for work when so many businesses are shut down or operating minimally due to weather.
My kids have been home with snow-days twice this week, and it’s Wednesday. I don’t want to be touched right now, and all my kids want is to sit in my lap and rub me, or pull on my skirt, or play with my hair.
The other night, after everyone was in bed, I had this weird image of trying to stick random pieces of clothing to my body, like one of those crabs that decorates itself, and hide from my family that way.
When you’re on food assistance, every molecule counts. I’m keenly aware that we are dependent on others right now, and I budget every penny, and every ounce of food. So, when the two week marker rolls around, I need to get to the storehouse. And no one else knows what I need- I have to swallow my pride and call the RS president and remind her that we need food. Again. And I feel horrible doing it- but I can’t just go to the store any time I like right now- so if I don’t get to the storehouse today, I won’t we able to get food until NEXT WEEK.
I still know we will be OK, I just don’t know when. The Cobra thing really threw me for a loop, and I feel deflated.
We’re supposed to get 7 more inches of snow tonight. No school tomorrow, either. I talked to Beanie’s preschool teacher, and in the seventeen years they’ve lived here, she has never seen it snow like this. We usually get an inch or two, and that’s about it. (Beanie’s preschool put him on a scholarship when they found out DH lost his job. I’m so grateful and humbled. I was worried I would have to pull him, further stressing him out, and due to the kindness of his teacher, he gets to continue going. It doesn’t matter how humble and embarrassed that makes me, what matters is stability for him.)
The kids are fighting all the time- it’s too cold to play outside, they have cabin-fever, and everyone is bored. I don’t care enough at the moment to do anything about it.
Let’s see, I know there is a silver lining here somewhere- what can I see? Someday I might make a great RS president because of all this? Yup. I know how to be very frugal now, and didn’t realize how much we lived in luxury? Yup. My faith has come back to the forefront in my life? Absolutely. I’m relying more on the hand of the Lord than on the arm of man? Without a doubt. I no longer wonder if this is where I want to be, because faced with the job offer requiring moving, I deeply and completely know this is where I want to make my home? Yes. And again, I say: Yes.
We watched a special on the History channel the other night about this guy who forges his own steel. He smelts the ore, hammers it, heats it and hammers it again. I think I get the whole parable of the Refiners Fire now. Maybe we’re in the fire right now, and we have to be bashed a few more times before our impurities are sloughed off. At least, I really hope and pray that’s what’s happening. Otherwise, it just hurts.
The paperwork finally came today. $1160 a month. That’s all I have to say about that.
Hail to the Prophet
Gordon B. Hinckley, the president and prophet of the Mormon church, passed away tonight shortly after 7 p.m., in his apartment in Salt Lake, surrounded by his family. He was 97 years old.
As much as I love him, I don’t feel sad- other than for missing him and his sweet words- because I know where he is, and I know Sister Hinckley was waiting, with jubilation and joy, to hold him again. We should all be so blessed.
It’s reserved and it has a banner! Nothing for sale yet, but I’m thrilled it’s actually taking shape- thanks to Mo Mommy for making the banner and getting it going. Now, I just have to make stuff!
The marvelous Hollywood of the notorious Flakes as awarded me a ROAR Award for good writing. The rules for being A Roar for Powerful Words recipient are that I share three writing tips and pass the award on to three more bloggers worthy of recognition and esteem. Hollywood gave me this little tidbit a while back, but since my world was so recently rocked by things out of my control, I haven’t gotten around to acknowledging her kindness.
The funny thing is, I don’t have any rules for writing- I just do it. Writing is organic; the things I need to say
often roll around in my head like loose marbles, until they coalesce into something say-able. Or not. That said, I probably have learned a thing or two in the 700+ posts I’ve written. Fortunately, going back and reading my archives is nowhere near as embarrassing as reading my diaries from when I was a young woman so years ago.
Without further ado:
1. Edit. Please please please, edit yourself. This is not the same
thing as censoring yourself, of which I am not a fan. Editing means re-reading what you’ve put down, paring your words, checking your punctuation and being merciless about extra words. If you can say it in 10 words, why take 17. See?
2. Know the difference between they’re, their and there.
3. Use paragraphs. Nothing is harder or less appealing
to read than a long, unbroken string of words. Break your writing up. Put spaces between your paragraphs- your readers will thank you.
4. Vary the length of your sentences. It’s like adding texture to a room, or splashes of color to a painting- short, succinct sentences interspersed with longer, more melodious ones makes your writing richer, warmer and more vivid.
5. Use spell-check. Really, it’s hard to focus
on your tale when I get hung up on your misspellings. Many of us spell poorly- but the mind grabs onto what it will, and misspellings take away from the mood and break the spell (ha!) you are casting with your words. You have the button, it’s in your power- use it.
That about does it. By no means am I an expert, and I don’t even pretend to be one in real life. Oh, if you knew me, you would see how comical it is that I give advice to anyone. (oh, one more thing; use capitals, you are not e.e. cummings, and the pronoun I is capitalized.)(oh, two more things: please DON’T YELL WHEN YOU WRITE and be very, very judicious in your use of the exclamation point!!!) I tag HSF at Organized Chaos, Cheryl at Happy Meets Crazy, and Michelle at Scribbit.
Etsy Store, Coming Soon!
It’s actuallyunder construction this time- and with the possibly a website of my own, down the line. For now, if I can get Etsy stocked, I will be happy. My good friend is taking over the uploading and posting of items, since I am such a techie-dolt I can’t figure it out. You know, the real reason artists always die in poverty isn’t because of lack of output- it’s because we can’t figure out how to function in the world~! I have six bags here, complete and ready to mail out, and I just can’t figure out how to pack them and get them to the post office. I know- that makes me sound really lame- but it’s just such a creativity killer to have to stop making stuff and switch from Create into Real world.
Anyway, be on the lookout. I’m going to do bags, like the custom one above, smaller totes, quilt patterns and painting. And maybe anything else I feel like making. Come one, come all. Wish me luck!
Tree of Life
This is the recent painting I did for the woman who is fighting cancer. Alma 5:34 is one of her favorite scriptures.
Girls Night Out
Mo and Vii decided I needed a night out with the girls- and wouldn’t take “no”, or the fact that I have no money, for an answer. They hijacked me and treated me to a movie, an enormous vat of popcorn and a barrel of overpriced pop.
We went to see Cloverfield.
OK, this is not usually my type of movie, but one does not look a gift-horse in the mouth, and when a mama is offered a free night out with the girls, one jumps. I had no idea what this movie was about, but from the name, I surmised it was some sort of dreamy, flower filled chick-flick. Uh, yeah. Wrong-o, buck-o. Not one for suspense, I googled the preview beforehand, and read everything I could on it- it’s the only way I can do suspense- as in, only if I know what’s coming. That defeats the whole suspense thing, I know, but whatever.
It was good. It was edge-of-your-seat type good- or in my case, clutching-my-coat-to-my-face good. There are a few scenes that are eewwy, and there is some blood, but mostly, just like the characters in the movie, you are afraid of what you can’t see. Do not be like the lady in front of us and take your primary-aged kids. I mean, come on- If there were a few more swear words, it would easily be rated R. Insane action, nonstop moving camera work, and loud, loud, loud explosions.
Early in the film, the parallels to 9/11 are so close as to be genuinely distrubing- be prepared. I wasn’t.
Oh, and if you’re sensitive to motion sickness, you might want to pop a Dramamine beforehand- Vii actually got sick in the restroom afterwards. Oh, and stay for the credits. All the way to the end.
The Bishop’s Storehouse
Today, hat in hand, pride in our pockets, DH and I went to the Bishop’s Storehouse.
For anyone who doesn’t know, or isn’t familiar with our church- The Bishop’s Storehouse is part of the Church welfare system- and are direct suppliers of food to families in need, as well as storehouses for vast quantities of other food in case of natural disaster or emergency. At our local storehouse, there are three enormous grain silos out back that have enough wheat stockpiled to feed our city- not just Church members- but everyone. Chances are, there’s one in your neighborhood, too- most people don’t even notice them. The Church has them all over the country.
If your family finds itself in distress, loss of job, medical needs, or some other trial in which your finances are strained, any bishop can refer you to the Storehouse. Most people who use it are members of our church, but I have volunteered there in the past, I have seen needy folks of other faiths show up- they are never turned away. The food is considered the Lord’s food, and our only job is to see it gets to the Lord’s children who are in need.
It’s not only food- they have cleaning supplies, toiletries, laundry needs, diapers, formula, paper products and even seasonal treats. It goes far beyond basic needs. There is fresh produce of all kinds, meat, dairy, canned goods, dried goods- It’s basically a grocery store, but with no cash registers, and kind people volunteering their time. You get your cart and a volunteer takes your list and helps you gather what your family needs.
No tally is kept- and you will never be asked to repay what has been given you. The only thing that is asked is that you someday, when you are able, help someone else.
That, my friends at the county, is how it’s done. Take notes.