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Category Archives: Growing and Learning


I must admit that I began this post on 21 January, 2012.  Yes, my life filled with ups, downs, demands, children, exams, and illness for a bit.  Since 1 May, I have had the goal of finalizing my drafted posts and becoming more regular with this blog, yet I am finally doing so now.  I am saying this with gratitude, which is an improvement, as I have shown extreme impatience with myself in the past.  The last six months have been good months, tough months, physically challenging months; yet, rewarding months, as well.

I must also admit that I do not recall the reason why I began collecting these musings on the topic of truth; however, I am following through and posting them anyway.  I love the words of truth, advice, or perspective of those who surround me, or came before me.  I always feel I know the world a little better after hearing someone else’s view of it.  So, without further ado,

Perspectives on Truth:

It is hard to believe that a man is telling the truth when you know that you would lie if you were in his place.  ~Henry Louis Mencken, A Little Book in C Major, 1916

If you tell the truth you don’t have to remember anything.  ~Mark Twain

Who lies for you will lie against you.  ~Bosnian Proverb

No man has a good enough memory to make a successful liar.  ~Abraham Lincoln

Make yourself an honest man, and then you may be sure there is one less rascal in the world.  ~Thomas Carlyle

A half truth is a whole lie.  ~Yiddish Proverb

A lie will easily get you out of a scrape, and yet, strangely and beautifully, rapture possesses you when you have taken the scrape and left out the lie.  ~Charles Edward Montague, Disenchantment

Those who think it is permissible to tell white lies soon grow color-blind.  ~Austin O’Malley

A truth that’s told with bad intent beats all the lies you can invent.  ~William Blake, “Auguries of Innocence,” Poems from the Pickering Manuscript

The least initial deviation from the truth is multiplied later a thousandfold.  ~Aristotle



A year of learning

I am so excited for the year ahead and all the things I am going to learn in it!  I am half-way through my bachelor’s degree, which will be just a milestone for me and not a stopping point.  I am learning new languages, taking on new gardening, and just loving learning.  This evening, I stopped in at and brushed up on my plate tectonics with one of its videos. I love geography!  Peoples, places, cultures, language, food, traditions!  Love it!

I’m making progress on my algebra course, too.  Math has always been a challenge, so I am working lots of extra practice problems.  I am going to reward myself for my effort with snippets of foreign films (mostly Indian- a.k.a Bollywood films), practicing Hindi with Byki and Rosetta Stone, and some random searches for other learning opportunities that pop into my head at random, like gardening.

That leads me to another learning goal this year:  I want to become a better gardener.  Last year was my first year succeeding with green beans and peas.  In past years, I’ve grown some good tomatoes, cucumbers, and, squash.  My search tonight lead me to the term “aquaponics” and an intriguing video:

This one is a bit of an advertisement, but it contains some good pictures of what an aquaponic system looks like, and the site has links to free information so there is no need to pay for an e-book- I found several sites asking up to $50 for one!

As I consider my career emphasis, my desire to learn the principles of social entrepreneurship, and my current financial status (ouch, ouch!)  I find this concept inspiring!  I wonder how I might use this concept myself, and how I might assist others with it….

In addition to these, I plan on learning some editing skills so I can create some digital scrapbooks and family albums.  I do not know why, but although I started out as a great family historian, I have failed absurdly in the picture-taking and archiving departments!   I want to improve on that!  When my children are grown an gone, a day that comes closer by the minute, I do not want them saying, “Mom, why didn’t we ever do anything together?”  I want the memories and the hard copy photographs as proof!  I want memories of fun, adventure, learning, joy, and love!  So, I need to make them and take time to preserve them!

One more goal: I need to start exercising again!  (I think it’s amazing how easily one finals weekend throws off my schedule enough to bump a good habit out of its place…)

So much to do, so very little time!  I am making the most of my New Year!  What are you up to?

Until next time,

Remembering Romance, continued: Hugs and Kisses!

  Hello, everyone!  Yesterday (Sunday, supposed to be relaxing and joyful, was definitely not!) offered me several challenging opportunities for practicing remembering love and romance.  I’d like to offer you a jumbled rainbow of my archived quotes.  Perhaps one will make you smile, strengthen your resolve, soften your heart, or give courage to your spirit, as rereading these this morning did for me.  I hope you enjoy! 

 happiness is like a kiss-

In order to get any good out of it

you have to give it to somebody else.


Don’t worry, be happy!  -Bobby McFerrin

A hug is like a boomerang – you get it back right away. ~Bil Keane, “Family Circus

Everybody needs a hug. It changes your metabolism. ~Leo Buscaglia

You can’t wrap love in a box, but you can wrap a person in a hug. ~Author Unknown

Hug Department: Always Open ~Author Unknown

I love hugging. I wish I was an octopus, so I could hug ten people at a time. ~Drew Barrymore

No matter how hard you hug your money, it never hugs back. ~Quoted in P.S. I Love You, compiled by H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

I will not play at tug o’ war
I’d rather play at hug o’ war,
Where everyone hugs
Instead of tugs….
~Shel Silverstein

Arm ourselves for war? No! All the arms we need are for hugging. ~Author Unknown

A hug is a handshake from the heart. ~Author Unknown

You can’t give a hug without getting a hug. ~Author Unknown

A hug delights and warms and charms,
 that must be why God gave us arms.
~Author Unknown

Hugs are the universal medicine. ~Author Unknown

A hug is a great gift – one size fits all, and it’s easy to exchange. ~Author Unknown

A kiss without a hug is like a flower without the fragrance. ~Proverb

If you’re angry at a loved one, hug that person. And mean it. You may not want to hug – which is all the more reason to do so. It’s hard to stay angry when someone shows they love you, and that’s precisely what happens when we hug each other. ~Walter Anderson, The Confidence Course, 1997

Hugs grease the wheels of the world. ~Author Unknown

A hug is two hearts wrapped in arms. ~Author Unknown

I don’t discriminate – I’m an equal-opportunity hugger. ~Author Unknown

A hug is a smile with arms, a laugh with a stronger grip. ~The Quote Garden

Hugging has no unpleasant side effects and is all natural. There are no batteries to replace, it’s inflation-proof and non-fattening with no monthly payments. It’s non-taxable, non-polluting, and is, of course, fully refundable. ~Author Unknown

Never wait until tomorrow to hug someone you could hug today,
because when you give one, you get one right back your way.
~Author Unknown

Sometimes it’s better to put love into hugs than to put it into words. ~Author Unknown

Be a love pharmacist: dispense hugs like medicine – they are! ~The Quote Garden

A hug is the shortest distance between friends. ~Author Unknown

Hugs can do great amounts of good – especially for children.
Princess Diana

They invented hugs to let people know you love them without saying anything  -Bil Keane

We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth.
 Virginia Satir

Millions and millions of years would still not give me half enough time to describe that tiny instant of all eternity when you put your arms around me and I put my arms around you. ~Jacques Prévert

The secret to having it all  . . . is believing you already do!

“In my ninety-plus years, I have learned a secret. I have learned that when good men and good women face challenges with optimism, things will always work out! Truly, things always work out!”
~ President Gordon B. Hinckley

Promise yourself to be so strong that nothing can disturb your peace of mind.  Look at the sunny side of everything and make your optimism come true.  Think only of the best, work only for the best, and expect only the best.  Forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future. Give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others.  Live on the faith that the whole world is on your side so long as you are true to the best that is in you!                                                                                                                                           –Christian D. Larson

(context for including this in my love quotes:  I think to myself, “what am I bringing to my relationships?  what am my creating?  do I hold my spouse in smallness, flaws, and mistakes of the past; or, do I wake up allowing him the opportunity to grow and change, do I recognize that he is a different person today than he was yesterday- just as I am?”)

“BE the change you wish to see in the world.”  Gandhi


i carry your heart with me

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
 my heart) i am never without it (anywhere i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
 by only me is your doing, my darling)

i fear
 no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)

e.e. cummings

  I’ll be back to share more soon!  This month is such a big one, I’ll have lots to share, including some of the projects, gifts, children’s crafts, and decorating I have planned. 


A Theme for 2012

I am a new year’s resolution maker- have been since I was a young teen.  I love the idea of a theme or focus for the year!  This year, my theme is “Remember!”  I have so many blessing for which I am thankful!  I must remember every one of them, and from whom they come!  I have a purpose, which I need to remember.  I need to remember who I am, the ideals for which I stand, and so much more.  My remembering assists me in retaining my focus, keeping a positive attitude and my faith, performing challenging tasks, and fighting off boredom in mundane and routine situations.  My remembrance of the important, sometimes simple and precious, sometimes complex and intricate aspects of my life holds a critical place in my experiencing joy, appreciation, and gratitude.  So, this year, I will focus on remembering, speaking, witnessing, studying, searching scriptures, and living in a way that promotes and manifests my remembrance.  I will teach my children to remember what they have learned and assist them each in building their perspective of  “the whys”- why they should learn, and why they should remember.

My younger children, Simon, Grace, Abigail, Sonnet, and I are working our way through C.S.LewisChronicles of Narnia.  (Side note:I love the Chronicles of Narnia!  I am a firm believer in reading the entire series and I think that those who read or watch the movies of only the three most popular books are really missing out!  The movies are wonderful, yet the series is wonderful when read in its proper order, and full of wonderful imagery and Christian symbolism -for those who are ready- and an awesome adventure for those who just want a good read.  Digital versions of the series are inexpensive, and one printing was a paperback 7-in-1 deal,  yet I love the illustrations in my paperback copies, which were the 50th Anniversary printing with Illustrations by Pauline Baynes, from 1955, which we’ve read over and over during the past 13 years.  If you’re experiencing on your own or want to listen during a commute, the books on disk are available in a set (more expensive, yet fun in its own way), each book touting a wonderful artist/actor (such as Kenneth Branagh or Jeremy North as its reader.)

Today, we began The Silver Chair, which is the sixth installment in the series.  The children in the story, Eustace Scrubbs and Jill Pole, learn some key signs, which they must remember, recognize, and to which they must respond to fulfill their “mission.”  I found a quiet, yet powerful teaching moment within our literature lesson, which I will remember and reference this year as we study, grow, and progress.

I am so excited for this new year, for my children’s potential and my own.  About what areas of your life are you particularly excited or passionate this year?


A couple of weeks ago, I became the mother of an adult!  Yes, my Tad (Joshua’s pre-birth nickname) is no longer a tadpole, but a grown-up, capable of driving, voting, donating blood, going to a doctor without a chaperone/responsible party, and making the grades in college!  I cannot believe how quickly time passed.  Life is so precious,  and I know I haven’t always caught all the moments- and I can’t go back.  So, I am catching the ones I can and making more of the ones to come.

(This is Joshua, in November 1993; just a few weeks old!)

Mastering life

A person who is a master in the art of living
makes little distinction
between their work and their play, their labor and their leisure, their mind and
their body, their education and their recreation, their love and their religion.
They hardly know which is which and simply pursue their vision of excellence and
grace, whatever they do, leaving others to decide whether they are working or
playing. To them they are always doing both.  -Zen poet

At this very moment, I have the start of about 25 posts in my head, where they have kept each other company for more than a month.  Life is moving so quickly, I have not taken time to sort them out and post them.  So, I am starting with this one.  I like this idea- to me, I think it is about being real and living in integrity.  If I were to live, mastering the art of life, I would be in harmony.  My actions and responses would create it, reinforce it, and honor it- while honoring me, too.  So, before I make a crazy-long list of goals for 2012, I am spending some time reflecting on what I will master and make some decisions based on creating: play as work, leisure out of labor, strengthening my mind and my body by honoring my wholeness, rejuvenate and relax through learning and growing, and drawing love into every every-day situation and action.  Wow!  I feel more balanced already!

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