Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Green Smoothie Girl

I recently received an email from the Green Smoothie Girl:

Today we continue debunking the mainstream media positions that you may have believed for a lifetime but simply aren't true.

This one is widely believed by the vast majority of Americans: Myth #8: "Milk and dairy build strong bones."The most powerful industry in America is the dairy industry, earning over $50 billion and spending over $200 million annually to spread the lie that dairy products nutrition is necessary for human children's health. They're smart enough to target mothers (and they started, very successfully, with our grandmothers), because they can create habits for life if a child is drinking cow's milk at an early age.

What are your thoughts?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Prop 8: Standing Up for Choice and Free Agency

If you haven't already heard about Proposition 8, you probably will in the upcoming weeks.

The people of California voted in March 2000 that “only marriage between a man and a woman is valid and recognized in California.” Because four activist judges in San Francisco overturned the people’s vote, Proposition 8 will be on the California Ballot this November. California's outcome will affect the decisions of other states.

“Yes” to Proposition 8, (1) Restores the definition of marriage to what the vast majority of California voters already approved, (2) Overturns the decision made by the four activist judges who overwrote the people’s vote, and (3) Protects what children are taught in public schools about “same-sex marriage” being the same as traditional marriage, and prevents other consequences to Californians who will be forced to not just be tolerant of gay lifestyles, but face mandatory compliance regardless of their personal beliefs.

The First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints sent a letter to the church leaders in California and asked members to donate their means and time to support Proposition 8, encouraging "our best efforts… to preserve the sacred institution of marriage."

As the LDS Church writes, "the Church's opposition to same-sex marriage neither constitutes nor condones any kind of hostility towards homosexual men and women" but protects the family and the rights and moral agency of all people on a legal level. Under California law, domestic partners shall continue to have "the same rights, protections and benefits" as married spouses (Family Code 297.5), including tax write offs, families, etc (emphasis added).

In other words, if marriage is redefined to be between any two consenting adults, it doesn't add rights to the gay population, but it does take away the rights of adoption agencies, churches, schools, and other organizations whose moral beliefs go against same-sex partnerships. Basically, it removes the choice to govern their lives and actions according to their moral code.

The Protect Marriage Coalition has asked for out-of-state volunteers to organize 800 calling teams to help with this effort to protect the definition of marriage between a man and woman before November's vote.

To volunteer, please contact Marcello Surjopolos. To donate online, visit the Protect Marriage website.

Here are some additional articles for those who are interested:
Article 1
Article 2
Article 3

Sunday, September 21, 2008

hApPinEsS iS...

living the Gospel, going to girls' camp, getting along...

Simpson Clip - Eternal Happiness

For Girls' Camp this year, our stake theme was "Happily Ever After". We based our camp song off of Charlie Brown's Happiness is. The scripture we based camp around was Mosiah 2:41.

And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.

Camp was in August, but last Sunday the first counselor in our ward asked three camp leaders (including me) to speak in Sacrement meeting about camp. I've been thinking about happiness again as a result.

A few happiness quotes (some are just plain silly):

Happiness isn't something you experience; it's something you remember. Oscar Levant (1906 - 1972)

One of the keys to happiness is a bad memory.
Rita Mae Brown

Money can't buy happiness, but neither can poverty.
Leo Rosten (1908 - )

A lifetime of happiness! No man alive could bear it: it would be hell on earth.
George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950)


A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of.
Jane Austen (1775 - 1817), Mansfield Park

Prophet Joseph Smith said: "Happiness is the object and design of our existence; and will be the end thereof, if we pursue the path that leads to it; and this path is virtue, uprightness, faithfulness, holiness, and keeping all the commandments of God" (HC 5:134­35)

Some think of happiness as a glamorous life of ease, luxury, and constant thrills. Happiness does not come by pressing a button, as does the electric light; happiness is a state of mind and comes from within. It must be earned. It cannot be purchased with money; it cannot be taken for nothing.
Spencer W. Kimball

So, I'm curious. What does happiness mean to you? What brings a smile to your face? What makes you happy--truely happy, blissfully happy, sincerely happy, completely happy?

Feel free to also add your favorite happiness quote.

Oh, and, if you happen to send just one dollar to Happy Dudette, you too could look as happy as I do....

Have a spectacular day!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Fair Fun (A Little Backtracking)

The first weekend in September, I went to visit my sister in Cache Valley, because ZM was being blessed.

I left Friday night shortly after Mini-Fest and changed from my performance costume to "street" clothes in the bathroom of a gas station in Highland. Needless to say, several customer gave me strange looks as I walked into the station in full regalia. (If you are unsure what that all entails, check out some of my earlier blogs about our dance troupe or visit our dance company website.)

By the time I arrived in Hyrum, my nieces were both fast asleep. ZM (age 5 weeks) had waited up for me with his mom and dad, though.

Saturday morning, Becca sent AL (nearly 2 years old) to see who was sleeping downstairs in the guest bedroom. How surprised was she to find me!

Morning - Gotta Put on My May-up!

While their mom and brother went to a friend's shower and their dad went to work, I took IC (age 4) and AL to the Utah State Fair. The drive to Salt Lake was full of silly songs sung at the top of our lungs. Their favorite was probably from the musical State Fair, because we kept singing the chorus over and over with our own words.

Here are the girls at the ntrance to the fair park. Yes, I did drop the "e" on the word and in the picture. Sigh. Notice the poses and cheesy grins!

We saw flowers. Grandma and Grandpa, we promise we didn't pick your Dahlias!

And goats... AL is sooooo brave. She petted the goat!

And cows...

And ponies... IC rode Macaroni. AL rode Stormy; the horse that supposedly lived up to its name and spooked easily. "Stay close by at all times," the handler warned. "And, watch out for helicopters." Comforting words.

And tigers... The tigers made someone a little nervous, but I'll never tell who!

What a darling bunch!

For some reason all the way home the girls wanted to sing the Yankee Doodle Macaroni song....

Friday, September 12, 2008

Heaven


I'm in heaven--or rather I was.


Anyone who knows me knows my passion for dancing. Today, I met something that rivals dancing. Today, thanks to an introduction from some friends at work, I met Red Mango.



More specifically, original with fresh blueberries. I'm already craving more. Sigh.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

A Picture Says a Thousand Words

Here are some photos from Friday's performance: the three troupes and some from our candle, sword, veil dance. Enjoy!

Desert Gypsy


Gypsy Rhythm



Gypsy Melody
Watara

Yarah and Shirin



Sirana



Saturday, September 6, 2008

Dancing Kudos

Last night was our dance company's final performance of the season: Mini-Fest at Heritage Park in Cedar Hills. This picture was from our practice on Tuesday night. I'll upload pictures from the actual event when I can. Isn't Gypsy Melody's fan dance breath taking?!?

The show started at 6:30 pm and ended at about 9:00 pm. There was a variety of dancers and dance styles, including Aztec. One of the belly dancers brought her pet snake! I thought her prop was very cool...until I saw its head move! It twined around her as she danced. Ewww. Normally a group of Polynesian dancers perform the hula at our annual event. I guess they weren't able to make it this year.

I think my favorite dance of the evening was a toss up between Sahira, Shirin, and Yarah's sword dance and Black Star Dance Company's performance. I would not want to meet That Trio in the proverbial dark alley with a sword! Black Star Dance Company (formerly Indie Kumari) is just plain cool! Someday I hope to have isolations as controlled as theirs. Their shimmies. Wow! It's like there is a disjoint between the upper and lower halves of their bodies. Total control.

Halima said that Gypsy Rhthym stole the show with our double veil, candle, and sword dance. My favorite part of that dance, besides getting to dance with fire, is that I get to do a backbend. Don't worry. We were completely safe. Besides our (ha, ha) tremendous skills, we danced with lights similar to these.

One of the local newspapers attended the event. Watch for a write up in a newspaper near you!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Meeting the man of my dreams...

Well, not really. But he was a-maze-ing! Mom and I crashed our old ward's enrichment night to listen to a special speaker (drum roll puhleeze) the Grocery Guru. I was enthralled by his energy and commitment to saving us money. His ideas and tips were fabulous. And, everyone at enrichment left with a personal invitation to go shopping with The Guru.

Previous to this lesson, I had begun compiling a coupon clipping folder. Now I'm following the Guru's example and upgrading to a binder. How would it be to go on a Disney cruise with the entire family for only $400? (I may be off slightly on that figure, but not by much.)

Logan, watch out! I may make it to Morocco afterall!

Monday, September 1, 2008

And so the journey begins...

I enter the blogworld--on tiptoe, eyes open wide, and slightly anxious.