Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Ask Missy

My friend Shannon had some questions about some things I've discussed here, and I thought there might be others who have wondered the same things. I'll do my best to address her questions and maybe clear some things up for a lot of people.

  • "Your oldest son had become a deacon, what does that mean?" Good question. A deacon is an office in the Priesthood. The Priesthood is the authority to act in God's name. All men who are worthy in our church hold the Priesthood. To act in God's name, they have to be living a clean life. A deacon is the very first, beginner office in the priesthood. He gets to pass the sacrament on Sundays, and collect offerings. What it means for me, is that I get to watch my son's first steps to becoming a man worthy of the name. I actually have to be tethered down with ropes during the sacrament to keep from floating up to the ceiling with happiness. By the time he's around 19, he'll be ready to be ordained an Elder. That is a huge increase in authority and responsibility. He'll be able to heal the sick, give blessings, and go on a mission. He'll spend two years away from us serving and helping others, and come home a man ready to be a husband and father. That is the plan, and I work hard every day to see to it he's prepared.

  • Here's one about our trip to Utah: "What was it your son was doing when he was speaking at the podium?" My son inherited the smart alek gene from me. He's an absolute punk, and I get a kick out of him. We were at a museum, and that was a display of a historical church pulpit. I didn't even post the best picture:

He has a razor-sharp wit and a wicked sense of humor. We crack each other up a lot.

  • You asked about the meeting we attended there. It was not a regular church service. Every six months, we have General Conference. Our Prophet, and other church leaders speak in five different sessions broadcast all over the world during the weekend. We usually watch it at my grandma's, surrounded by family all snuggled up on the couch together. We have a huge dinner in between sessions, it's one of my favorite "holidays" of the year.
    Here are my parents, holding my baby, with my brother and his wife watching conference. The meeting is held in a huge conference center across from the Salt Lake temple. None of us had been to the actual meeting before, so this was huge for us. To see the Prophet in person is something you never forget.

  • You asked about the difference between a regular church and a temple. A regular church has a chapel, classrooms, a kitchen and a gym. We have Sunday services there, dinners, dances and parties. Anyone can come, member or not. Temples are literally the house of God. Only members recommended by their church leaders can go inside. Sacred ordinances like marriages are performed there, not worship services. L. and I were married in the Seattle temple, and we have one close by. We got to take our oldest there after he was ordained to do baptisms for people who never got the chance when they were alive. It was probably one of my happiest days to be there with him. It's the biggest dream of my life to have all my boys in the temple with us. That would be my measure of success as a parent.
You asked how we were able to make that long trip alone, and how I was able to still look good. Ahem, another good question. Here's my answer: You only got to see the good pictures! I thought about posting a bad picture of me to prove it, but decided against it. The rest, was a miracle. Seriously, we prayed about this trip for weeks. We fasted about it. Because my husband holds the priesthood, I was able to ask him for a blessing to help me on the way and I got some valuable counsel through that blessing that made all the difference. We took this trip very seriously, we only listened to uplifting things all the way there and back so we would be ready to learn and feel everything that was there for us to learn. The trip didn't feel long, I didn't feel the burden of caring for the boys on my own. It was a miracle.

I'm glad you can tell from my posts how happy we are. Sometimes I have a hard time believing that there can really be such a deep peace and joy as what we have. I mean, yeah, we do have our moments like yesterday when my husband was working late. I go outside and find that my above-pictured oldest son has built a full-on campfire on the sidewalk beside the street, for the whole neighborhood to see! I feel really sad for a lot of my kid's friends whose home lives are so hard. It makes me want to adopt them all, and during the day, we try to take them into our 'cocoon'. We have this foundation that keeps us strong and doing what will keep us happy and bring us more happiness. In our church, families are everything, and we have clear direction to help us keep the most important things first. That's probably our secret formula. We're definitely NOT perfect, we're plenty crazy, tetchy and immature, but we don't have to be perfect to be happy.

So there you go, it's probably more than you ever wanted to know, but I hope that covers it for you.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme

We're due for a hard freeze soon, and I had this thought: does anyone want some fresh herbs? I have a HUGE sage bush, TONS of rosemary, and best of all, a nice amount of tarragon- the spice of the gods. Can you think of anything better than fresh, pungent rosemary inside a roasting chicken and worked between the skin and meat? Or tarragon in scrambled eggs, or mixed in with the ricotta in the very best lasagna? So, if anyone's interested, please PUH-LEESE come by my house and snip, snip all you want. Herb-infused vinegar in cute bottles for Christmas presents? Hung on the walls of your kitchen with ribbon to dry? You'll find my herb garden right outside my kitchen door. Seriously, don't even call. You can come in the dead of night, dressed in black if you don't want me to see you. The first really hard freeze will kill most of it so run, don't walk to my kitchen door and take all you want!