Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Fear and Living

I am part of a recovering from Mormonism support group. It is an interesting bunch of people and sometime it is profound. I am copying and pasting an email "Chad" sent to the group. This one really touched me and made me think.

One thing that I have always felt to be important was to live life deliberately and passionately. I love Thoreau's Walden where he talks about living a deliberate life and not coming to the end of one's life only to discover that one had never truly lived. (Obviously, he said it much more eloquently.)

So when I read this I again had to pause and think - where am I now? Am I living a deliberate life of my own choosing and passion? Happily the answer is yes! I am. I am as happy as I have ever been. I love my little family and my dear friends. I have a job that I love with people that I really enjoy being around. I have a comfortable warm home with good food to eat and comfy clothes to wear. Are there daily frustrations and irritations - certainly - DC traffic alone is enough to make my hair turn grey; but overall this is the life I have chosen and I am happy with my choices.

And now for the bit that inspired my thinking...

For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of
love, and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

While serving my time for Mormonism as a missionary in Germany, I
would often spend a little time each day reading through the Luther
Bible in an attempt to understand the role of Christ and his
mission, not to mention reading the most correct translation of the
New Testament according to Joseph Smith. On one such occasion, I
came across a passage in 2 Timothy where Paul gives encouragement
and hope to the beleaguered Timothy. Paul's words gave me comfort
with a healthy dose of cognitive dissonance.

As I read the words, I saw that fear was not from God, yet as I
examined my missionary experiences, I saw that fear was always
present. The missionary program was fear based. My temple experience
and requirement to keep my temple covenants at all costs was driven
by fear. My experiences with mission authority were fear based. My
personal life, filled with regret and remorse for not doing and
being enough was fear based. Yet as quickly as I discovered that my
life was riddled with fear, my fear caused me to bury it deep down
inside of me again and ignore it as I had always done.

As I made my way out of Mormonism, I saw my old nemesis was always
present. I was afraid to see, I was afraid to investigate, I was
afraid of what my family and friends would do and think, and in some
ways I was afraid of myself.

I have not yet transcended fear in my life, but I do confront it
frequently, removing its power and hold over my mind and heart. For
those who still struggle on their road of discovery and self-
acceptance, distance yourself from the fear which holds you back.
Turn to friends and loved ones for strength and support if possible,
but move forward, removing more and more fear as you go. Once the
source of fear has been removed and the distance grows between you,
fear diminishes and its power lost.

One of my favorite films is Defending Your Life, written and
directed by another of my favorites, Albert Brooks. In this film,
we see the main character Daniel in his sojourn into the afterlife,
wherein he is required to make an accounting of sorts for his life's
experiences and decisions. The thrust of the defense is not based on
good or evil, but on how well he confronted his fears in life.
Failure to prove that he had conquered fear during his life would
require that he return to earth to repeat his earthly experiences
until he mastered his fears and could then be permitted to move on.
Without spoiling the film for those who have not seen it, suffice it
to say that Daniel eventually conquers his fears through love and is
permitted to move on to bigger and better things.

Just as Daniel used the power of love to conquer his fears which
held him back, we too must love ourselves enough to stare our demons
in the face and remove their power over us. There is life after the
fear. There is understanding, self-acceptance and love after the
fear. There will still be trouble, heartache, misery and challenge,
but there will be less fear in our lives giving us more strength to
face whatever life throws our way.

Face the fear.

Thanks Chad for the great thoughts!

Saturday, October 20, 2007

WW underoos

I miss superhero underoos. If I could buy some comfy superhero panties for everyday wear, I would be all over that.

Characters I would like to wear: Wonder Woman (4 pairs), She-Ra princess of power (4 pairs), Thundercats, Hello Kitty (3 pairs), He man (4 pairs - he is just cool), maybe Daisy Duke and maybe Scooby Doo or the Gummie Bears (though the last three would definitely be weekend wear - I mean how could you take yourself seriously if you were wearing Scooby Doo panties.

If you want to post a comment, please do mention which characters you would wear?

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Knitting lately

I taught G how to knit a little over the weekend and so we made several phone cozies. They are actually quite fantastic. Then yesterday I went to my LYS at lunch and got some cool yarn with some bling - so don't be surprised if you get a sparkley phone cozy for Yule this year.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Wendi's Weekly Question

Something(s) I can't live without:

crocs/dansko shoes
suits with stretch in them

perhaps I am taking this too literally, i am having trouble thinking of things.

Coffee Swap Questionairre

Here are the questions:
1. Whole bean or ground?

Definitely Whole bean - I grind my beans fresh right before I use them.

2. Fully-loaded or decaf?

Both, most of the time I go fully-loaded, but I recently found a decaf that was really good, so I enjoy that in the afternoon sometimes.

3. Regular or flavored?

Regular - I haven't had any flavored coffees that I like yet. But I do like to add spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, cloves and occasionally vanilla) to the finished product. I love the natural flavor of Kona coffee - those Hawains are awesome!

4. How do you drink your coffee?

Generally I make a double shot latte. I have a cool machine called the aerobiepress that makes the most fantastic coffee/espresso. I usually make a double shot with that, add a little raw sugar and whole milk.

Much to my surprise I also really enjoy the Kona coffee black.

5. Favorite coffee ever?


6. Are you fussy about your coffee or will any old bean do?

I am a bit fussy, but I have noticed that has more to do with freshness than anything. I like to try new beans, but I stick by my old favorites - which incidentally are all from Costco :).

7. Favorite treats to have with your coffee?

A croissant in the morning. Or a piece of dark chocolate in the afternoon. I also really like to eat macadamian nuts while drinking my coffee - though I don't do this often.

8. Anything else about your coffee preferences?

I for one feel that the mug makes a difference in my coffee enjoyment. I have an adorable caldron shaped mug - black with green interior - that I got for halloween and my sister just got me the one from starbucks with all the coffee beans on the outside. Big, cute mugs with comfortable handles and nice shapes are my favorites.

9. Yarn/fiber you love?

I love it all, but am inclined to use the non-itchy stuff. I have been dyeing to try some sort of cashmere for a shawl - but have yet to find a pattern that I want to make my first attempt on (suggestions appreciated).

I use a lot of cotton because it is readily available and useful in my favorite thing to make so far - dishcloths/facecloths.

10. Yarn/fiber you hate?

Acrylic - does this even count as yarn?

11. What's on your needles?

A couple of dishcloths, a bib and a bag.

12. Favorite colors?

In general I love black, but not in cotton because it fades and just looks bad very quickly. I love punches of saturated colors and more muted earth tones.

13. Allergies?


14. Anything you really love, really don't like, or just need to get off your chest?

I am so excited for this swap and I can't wait to meet new friends with

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Menu Planning Saturday

I know all the good blogging moms of the world do menu plan monday - but that just doesn't give me time to shop. So I am posting my menu today.

Saturday - Salmon with ginger/soy sauce, risotto and salad
Sunday - dinner with in laws
Monday - zesty crock pot chicken, rice, veggies (we'll see what looks good at the store)
Tuesday - Turkey meat loaf, mashed potatoes, veggies (see monday)
Wednesday - Chicken enchiladas w/ corn
Thursday - Spagetti, garlic bread, salad
Friday - Grilled cheese sandwhiches with roasted red pepper and tomato soup
Saturday - Misty's wedding - free dinner with gift :)

Kudos to Wendi for the menu posting ideas and for the monday recipe.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Coffee Swap

I'm in! I was hoping I would get to participate this time around.

This swap is for people who love knitting and coffee - which is certainly me.

For more info go to the blog's page. They are also keeping everyone linked together on ravelry. So much fun.

Monday, October 01, 2007

DC Exchange Q4

Are there any recipes you especially enjoy having in the Fall? Any foods that are seasonal that you especially enjoy?

I love Pumpkins and squash. So this time of year is great for making all kinds of good squash foods. I love the roasted butternut squash soups and the pumpkin pies. And we can't forget the pumpkin spice lattes - yum. Though I must admit mine is much better than Starbucks (unless you like really sweet drinks - then go for theirs).

I also really love the apples. One year an old boss of mine bet me bushels of apples over various patent law questions. It worked out really well for me. I won 5 bushels of hand picked apples from up-state NY. They were the best I have ever had in my life. It was a real challenge to eat them all before they went bad and we had almost nothing else in our fridge for about a month. But they were so yummy!

Anyone else have favorite fall foods?