Monday, November 22, 2010

Dora: And Why I Despise Her

Isn't that a cheery title? This blog is sadly forsaken, and for no good reason, other than sheer laziness. As I have explained to others, this is the blog that is just for ME and my love affair with writing. So naturally it's my favorite one to write for. I even think in blog posts for this blog. But when it comes down to it, the hour it takes to write a simple post becomes too time consuming and I end up. But I have a quiet moment to myself right now-and I'm turning 30 in the next couple days, (gasp!) so it's high time I set some new goals for my next 30 years and put more effort into this blog. Aaaaannnnd back to my title.

Last week a friend of mine and I were discussing our pregnancies-my 3rd and her 1st. During said conversation she said, "I know one thing-my kids will NOT be allowed to watch Dora. I can't stand her." My response was, "Good luck with that!" but I must admit I sympathize with her. Let me explain.

First of all, let's get all the physical complaints out of the way. I realize the shallowness of these statements, but say them I will. Her head is entirely too large. Her cousin Diego's head is a normal shape, I don't understand why Dora got stuck with the massive noggin. And for crying out loud, who gives a girl a bowl cut? Plus her shirt is too short. I don't care where you get your clothes-if I see something cute at Walmart I'm not ashamed to buy it, but I do make an effort to BUY THE CORRECT SIZE. Someone needs to break the news to the kid-she's not a 4T anymore. I'm just saying. Moving on.

She's always shouting at me and my children. I'm not sure why she does this-maybe her parents have never taught her the correct way to speak to others. Maybe she thinks we're all suffering from poor hearing, or since she's bi-lingual, maybe we're below her on the education scale. Whatever the reason, I don't like it and it needs to stop.

And finally-I'm not too crazy about her friends. First there's Benny. He obviously has a smoking problem at his young age, the poor kid sounds like a 68 year old woman from Vegas. And he dumpster dives. That's gross. And THEN! There's Boots. The monkey version of Eddie Haskell from Leave it To Beaver. Or Kimmy Gibler from Full House. When Dora's twin siblings were born, he bragged about being a "Big Monkey Brother". Dude, you have your own family. And I'm assuming they're a good family, because they came and supported you during your ridiculous pirate play and they even cheered at the end. But even that doesn't top my least favorite character-the grumpy old troll. Ugh. Don't even get me started. If only his song wouldn't get stuck in my head...

So there you have it. The sad thing about all of this is, I've seen most of her episodes and all of her "movies".

Who has two thumbs and has been conned by Dora the Explorer? This gal. xo

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Old Habits Die Hard

Here's a pet peeve I have-I'm always a little disturbed when I'm bothered by something that is completely illogical. Like I know I shouldn't be bothered by it. In my head it makes perfect sense why I should shrug it off, or refuse to let it get under my skin, but for some reason I'm still bugged. I have some examples-

Part of Mercy River's preparation process for Time Out involves shopping for outfits. Rough, right? It's actually quite painful. Trying to find clothing that's cohesive to each other, but still reflects our personal style is quite obnoxious. So imagine my joy when my outfit for our "pink" ensemble came together. I loved it-it looked like "me", and matched the other girls beautifully. Truth be told, I was rather proud of it. The first time I wore it I was bombarded with compliments. "I love your outfit!" "Your outfit is so cute!" "Your flower is darling!" "Those shoes are fantastic!" And then-THE comment.

"Are you expecting?"

Nope. I wasn't at the time. And that's all I thought of the rest of the event. I'm not angry at the woman that said it-in fact, I feel bad for her. I'm sure she beats herself up about it all the time, the look on her face was cringe worthy. But her comment stuck with me. I'm no longer too crazy about the outfit. Forget all the positive feedback, to one woman I looked pregnant in that dress, so that's the only thing I think when I put it on.

Stupid, right? I know that.

My next example is also Mercy River related. (Side note-MR is hands down the most humbling experience. Never before have I been so out there for the world to judge. And some people are pretty harsh judges.) We had a concert this last weekend in the Brigham Young Historical Park. It was part of the Temple Square Concert Series, so it's well advertised, and well attended. We were trying out a new concert set, and it felt like it was going well. Instead of our nerves getting the better of us we were concentrating on giving the audience an "experience". I noticed several people crying during a solo song of mine, and I thought, "OK, they felt the meaning of that song!" I was thrilled to be a part of this moment with them. Then, during a particularly fun song, I noticed a couple laughing in the corner, and watched as they STARTED TO MAKE FUN OF ME and how I moved my hand! I couldn't look at them the rest of the time. After the concert we sold more CDs than we have at any past concert, had dozens of people ask for pictures and autographs, had several hugs from small aspiring singers...but that's the not part I'll remember. I'll remember that couple. That couple ruined that experience for me.

Stupid, right? I know that.

Why do I do this? I'm a fairly positive person-opinionated, yes. Passionate, yes. But I try to find the good (or at least comical) side of things. And for the most part I think I'm rather logical. But no matter how much my head says, "You know better than that", or my heart says, "Be Positive!", my stomach still has that pit. I wish there was a way to ignore my stomach. Maybe I have more growing up to do than I thought. I'm actually excited to be 50. How nice to be at a time in life when I'm so comfortable in my own skin, the opinions of others simply bounce off. I guess I don't have to wait to be 50, maybe 30 will be my magic age. If so, I have a lot of work to do between now and my next birthday.


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Self-Proclaimed Feminist

In the last couple weeks I've experienced two examples of "Feminism." But first, I must tell you...I am a feminist.

I can explain! This all starts with one of my favorite stories in the Old Testament; The story of Adam and Eve. Here's how I imagine it went down. (And may I not be struck down for putting these thoughts on paper, er, screen.)

Adam and Eve were taught in that Garden. I like to think that, when Eve was faced with the choice to partake of that darned fruit, she outweighed all her options. Knowing what her actual role was, and what was needed to fulfill that role, she made a calculated decision. Satan, thinking he got the better of her, was thrilled at first, but then realized later that he had been tricked. By a woman. She knew what she was doing-he just didn't know that. Satan took his immature revenge on her offspring. And we see the effects of it to this day. Women are definitely viewed as the weaker, or lesser sex. In all honesty, this aftermath doesn't bother me so much. I find more pride in the knowledge that our first Earthly mother got the best of him.

So here were the two examples I alluded to earlier.

1)I heard a news story on the radio about a bunch of "feminists" marching through the streets of Washington-topless. Their reason? Men can walk around without shirts! Why can't women! THEN! (This was the funny part to me), they were angry because a group of men stood around them during the whole ordeal and snapped pictures. Apparently that was crossing some line. (It's not rocket science ladies, take a stab at why you think they were there! Morons.)

2) I just finished reading the book, The Red Tent. (Side note-I'm not sure if I'm recommending the book right now-there are parts that are, as my sister so lovingly put it, icky. So consider yourself warned.) It's about Dinah, the only daughter of Jacob from the Old Testament. Dinah and her four "moms" were strong women. They reveled in being female. The day Aunt Flo comes to visit for the first time is practically a cause for celebration. The ability to carry children is considered a great privilege. Midwives were viewed as God-like. They were able to steer their husband in any direction-all while convincing that husband it was all part of HIS brilliant plan. Men were great and all; I mean, they definitely served a purpose, but these women were so wrapped up in the blessings given solely to them.

So here's my question-
Since when did feminism mean being treated like a man? Why can't women celebrate just being who they are? Isn't that TRUE feminism? I'm asking this because there are things I complain about-that horrid week each month in which I'm crampy and crabby, the pregnancy pains and aftermath to my body, the roles that fall on my lap as the "Housewife and mom". But I'm thinking those are the things we should celebrate. Look at what our bodies can do! Look at how our feelings are so in tune to others! Look at this natural nurturing we have! Look at our ability to multi-task! Look how we can turn our husbands in any direction, while convincing him it was all his idea! And although it's at times a curse, look at our constant need to be better! Are we ever just content with where we are? I would argue that we are not.

I'm not saying that some men don't posses a couple of these same qualities. But I'll be honest, almost every woman I know has almost ALL of these qualities. Maybe we should throw ourselves big parties during that time of the month. (I'm pretty sure a pedicure would solve my grumpies.) And when we've checked off 2 or 3 things off our to-do list, we should have a Dove Dark Chocolate. And next time I'm pregnant, I should find a way to pamper myself at least once a week. (However, I'm pretty sure I'll forget this one.) Because gosh dern it, being a woman is POWER! Ya feel it??

So fellow women-enjoy being a girl. Celebrate all the things we do and CAN do. And for heaven's sakes, keep your shirt on. :)

Monday, April 5, 2010

Confessions of a Stay At Home Mom

"What did you do today?"

Such an intriguing question. Sometimes it stops me in my tracks, as I think about how much of my day I should share. For example, if I were to describe today;

I did some "housewife" duties-I cleaned out my fridge, and organized my bathroom closet. I made a grocery stop to the ever-popular Walmart. (I'm sure the amount of money I spend there employs at least two people.) And as of this evening, my laundry is now caught up. (And yes, I'm fully aware this status will change by tomorrow morning.)

I did some "mom" duties-changed diapers, cooked a few meals, colored, painted some wicked water-color rainbows, pushed around some cars with Chase...I did some "Mercy River" duties-caught up on our emails, posted a status on our FB account, and I had a conference call with Whit and Soni.

But do I tell him all the in-between stuff? Like, while I was on my way home from the store, the kids fell asleep in the car. So I took the opportunity to practice my interview skills, and I proceeded to have a very intelligent conversation with myself. Or during that small moment when both kids were down for quiet time, I snuck some Easter candy. Then, while I was cleaning the fridge, I had the Food Network on in the background. And after I ate the afore mentioned candy, I saw Giada cooking some yummy Italian, and then I saw her bitsy little body so I stopped cleaning and did 50 crunches. Or when I hit my 4:00 crash moment, I sat on the couch and stared at the ceiling for a good 6 minutes-trying to empty my mind and tune out my children, who were running around said couch.

Do I tell him that at some point today, I DID have makeup on? That I was dressed this morning, but then my shoulder was covered in Peanut Butter, so...and I started doing my hair, but then Chase got into my toothpaste, and I got sidetracked, so hence the current ponytail?

And, do I tell him that getting the mail always makes me a little excited?

I guess I could tell him, but I'm not sure if he would get it. I'm not sure you really understand the life of a stay at home mom until you experience it.

I can tell him about Kallie's many questions, and her too-cute phrases. I can tell him how much Chase loves his golf club, and try to demonstrate his latest cheesy grin. I can tell him how Kallie bit her jelly bean in half, just so Chase could have the other piece. I could tell him how fun it was to snug with Kallie while we watched Enchanted. I can describe Kallie and Chase's game of Kallie shutting the door, Chase knocking on it, Kallie opening it, and Chase saying "Hi!" in his sweet voice.

I can tell him all these things, but again, experiencing it is another ball game. I'm so grateful I get to experience it-all of it. The self-interviews, the couch crashes, the Peanut Butter shirts and ponytails, the mail, singing Enchanted at the top of my lungs with Kallie, getting whacked in the shins by Chase's golf club...I'll be honest, it lacks a bit of glitz and glamour, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

For the Good of the People

Do I dare state my political opinions on a public blog?
I guess it's my blog, right? I'm testing it on this one before I put it out on Mercy River's.
If you think it's too, um, political, let me know, k? Thanks for being my test group!

In complete respect of other people's political stand, I have to say this past weekend was very hard for me. Monday was a rough day. The things that are happening in our country scare me. For the first time I felt hopeless-like there's nothing I can do. My children will grow up in...well, anyway, I was scared. All day I had a pit in my stomach. Then Tuesday night I came across something that gave me hope.

I started reading the Old Testament a couple weeks ago. Tuesday I read about Abraham and Sarah receiving the news that Sarah will have a baby. (P.S. I love that Sarah laughed, out of sheer joy. Can't you just picture her? I love Old Testament women.) But later in that chapter Abraham is talking to the Lord about Sodom and Gomorrah. The Lord tells Abraham that Sodom and Gomorrah will be destroyed. Abraham essentially asks him, but what if there are 50 good people in that city? Will you destroy it? The Lord tells him, He would save the city, for the sake of those 50 people. Then Abraham asks, but what if it's 45? 40? 30? Will you destroy it? The Lord tells him he would save the city for the sake of those 30 people. Finally Abraham asks, but what if there's only 10 people? Would you destroy the city? The Lord said, "I will not destroy it for ten's sake." Amazing. Here is a city chock full of wickedness, but He would save the city simply for the sake of the 10 righteous people. Is there any question He is mindful of each individual?

I may not agree with the things that are happening to my country. BUT-I KNOW there are GOOD people here. And as I read that, I realized that once again, it's in the Lord's hands. And He knows the people who are trying to follow Him. My job is to make sure my family and I are ready-prepared for the worst; that we work hard to be GOOD people. So when and if something happens, we have nothing to fear. And when there's an absence of fear, hope is allowed to exist.

So I'd like to use these changes in our nation as a motivation tool, to get my behind in gear. And the end result will hopefully be, HOPE.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

2 Birds, 1 Stone

I'm lazy, you say? I haven't updated this blog in...forever? The latter point is true, but I'm here to defend myself on the former accusation. Some of you know this, but I don't have 2 blogs. I have 3. And unfortunately this one tends to fall in last place. Most of my writing energies go into the Mercy River Blog. To be honest, there's a bigger following there, and therefore I feel more pressure to keep it updated. So I'm going to do one of two things-copy and paste posts from one to the other, or just direct your reading eyes (and your precious spare time) to our Mercy River Musings. I like to think of myself as efficient. (Which may or may not include some laziness. I'm not admitting to anything!) That being said, I DO love my Mamma Drama readers, so I'll do the best I can to keep y'all around, mmmmk?

Monday, February 15, 2010


When the Mercy River girls and I were choosing songs for our latest album, we were all sold on one Primary song. "I Know My Heavenly Father Loves Me" just HAD to be on it. It's our favorite Primary song, and it's so beautiful on it's own-imagine it with an amazing arrangement! Whitney took the liberty to start the arrangement, (which was beautiful enough to bring Soni and I to tears), and in our heads we had this huge orchestral track behind it-I believe we used the words "flowy" several times while describing our idea to our producer. He submitted it to an arranger and about a week later we got it back. And we didn't like it. It was NOTHING like we expected; there was nothing "flowy" about it. We were brought to tears, but this time for a different reason. This was not what we pictured! This was not what we had planned for this song! Our producer reassured us that it was great, and regardless of our opinion, it was going on the album.

This last couple weeks we've given the album to our family and close friends to get their opinion. And guess what song falls in people's Top 5 list-you guessed it. "I Know My Heavenly Father Loves Me." One friend told me she sat and cried through the whole thing. It helped her during a rough moment, and she was so glad it was on the album. The sad thing is, my first response was, "Really?? Did you listen to it really close??" But then I thought, did I listen to it really close? Have I ever listened to it without my "Mercy River Goggles" on, and just let the message speak to me as it does for those hearing it for the first time? I must confess, I hadn't done that.

There's a life lesson in here. There have been times, and will continue to be times, in my life when things aren't going the way I planned. The end result of a project or challenge may be different than I expected. But I think different is OK. It's not bad, it's just...different. And maybe that different path I end on has something else in store for me. Maybe there are people in that new path that need me. Maybe there are lessons that are more important for me to learn. And when I find myself on that new path, I need to stop mourning what I've lost, and shift my focus-change my perception. How can I see the path for what it is, if I can't let go of my opinion? Just because things don't go my way, doesn't mean it's going the wrong way. At some point I need to not only hand my will over to the Lord, but LET IT GO. He can't do anything with my life if I won't let go.

I listened to that song, concentrating on changing my perspective. I listened to the song again and again, letting go of my regrets of "what might have been", and trying to see it as others might. And I must say, I love the song. It's different, but I think it's the way it should be.

P.S. How many of you are singing "What Might Have Been" right now? Suckas!
P.P.S. I'm NOT trying to sell this CD-promise! It's just an analogy, peeps. :) Loves.