Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Our Big Announcement!!!

Well we thought that we would let everyone know that we are expecting another baby. We just found out this week that it's a GIRL!!! We thought that we would take a vote on what you think the name should be. The options are:

Trixie, Kiki, Lola, Kora, or Kloe

Let us know what you think!!
We are so excited!!!

Love you all,
S + K

Monday, January 30, 2012

Downton Abbey

I am completely smitten by this show:


We watched it for the first time on Friday night.
By Sunday night we had completed 7 episodes, or the entire first season.

I cannot wait to start the second season!
It was also confirmed that there will be a third season starting this September!

Hallelujah for finding such an addicting show!
Thank you Gorgeous for letting me in on the secret!

I need at least one more sentence with an exclamation mark!

If you haven't watched Downton Abbey, please, oh please, go find the first season and start watching. I know Netflix has season 1 and pbs.org has the beginning of season 2 (though it wasn't working for me last night for some reason).

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Top 10 Favorite Things from 2011

(and January 2012, and 2008, and...well, just some favorite stuff)

1. Favorite Hair Product/Shampoo:

Big Sexy Hair Big Volume Shampoo and Conditioner
Sexy Hair Big Sexy Hair Extra Big Volume Shampoo 33.8 oz

The first time I used this, I was in love. The second time I used it, I was deeper in love. Then I started only shampooing every other day, with this shampoo, and I am completely smitten. If you couldn't guess, I love this stuff! It does magical things to my hair.

2. Favorite Skin Care combo:
Deep Action Cream Cleanser & Mary Kay Day Solution
Clean & Clear Deep Action Cream Cleanser - 6.5oz.Opens in a new window 
mk source

So this face cleanser has been on my favorites list before. I've been using it for about 3 years. I believe  cleanser to be a very personal thing for every woman's skin. Something that works wonders on one person may cause another to quarantine herself to her room for a week because of the breakouts. I've tried many, many different cleansers and combos, even higher end products, and this has been the one that has consistently kept my break outs away. For about $5 a tube, it is definitely worth it! Plus, it must be good because our local Walmart can't seem to keep it on the shelves!

In addition to that, I found that when combined with the MK day solution as a moisturizer, I have a winning combo for my skin. The day solution is absolutely silky smooth and incredibly light weight. I love it. When my bottle ran out my heart broke a little. I just can't bring myself to pay $30/ounce at this point in my life. But, when I can, I sure as heck will! Because it is truly, absolutely, incredibly, amazing. Maybe I'll start saving up...

3. Favorite Shoes: 


Over Christmas I traversed to DSW with my sweet sister and mom. I had no intention of buying shoes since we'd just had Christmas. However, I had been dying for some flat shoes that were not tennis shoes, but a little more dressy, yet still casual. I found a pair of clearance buys for $20 that fit okay and were kinda cute. In the same aisle were a bunch of Sperry's. My mom urged me to try some on, saying they'd be way cute on me and I could pull them off because they're kinda preppy, but I couldn't decide if I thought they were cute or not. Then I tried them on. Instantaneously they became much more cute and felt uber de duber comfy! I hemmed and hawed about getting them, not sure if they were really awesome or not, and I felt like I couldn't spend the money right at that moment, so I passed.

I took home the clearance buys (really lame sorta-Sperry's-knock-offs) and tried them on the next morning. So. Not. Comfy. They went right back to the store. The Sperry's had been nagging my brain all day so I decided to try them on for Mr. Man. He approved, and they were suddenly in a bag and going home with me.

Later, I talked to my super cute and trendy other sister about them and she said she had a pair of Sperry's and loved them! She highly recommended them and assured me they were very cute.

Since my pair came home with me, I have not regretted buying them for one single tiny second. They are hands down the most comfortable pair of "flats" I have ever worn. Including tennis shoes. They are also super versatile and go with everything! I didn't get the traditional tan colored ones, mine are dark grey, and I feel good about it. Also since purchase I have seen people everywhere (especially in Chesterfield) wearing Sperry's. Funny how that happens.

Now I can't decide if I think Toms are really cute or not. Sometimes I love em, sometimes I hate em. I think I'd have to try them on and get my own pair to make an honest and fair judgement.

4. Favorite Foundation:

Mary Kay Matte Wear Liquid Foundation


No, I am not a Mary Kay rep. Yes, I used to be.

Last summer I reluctantly went to a facial party because I needed new foundation. I used MK liquid in the past, but I hadn't heard of this new kind before. The rep, who I'm now friends with, had this foundation to sample. I was pretty confident I would want my previous kind, but after sampling it, I decided to get a tube. I paid the extra 5 bucks and loved every drop of it. When it was gone, I decided to save a buck and get my previous type. After a week or two of wear, I hated it. So I called up my friend, switched out for the Matte Wear, and I've been a happy camper since!

MK also has this same foundation in Luminous wear for people with normal/dry skin. I've heard amazing things about it. Since my skin is combo/oily, the matte wear is perfect for me.

5. Favorite Make Up Trick:

Contouring and Highlighting your face.
before & after (this is not me)
I found this blog post over the summer about makeup application. It took me a couple tries to get it right, but ever since then I apply my makeup this way (not necessarily the eyes, just the face). I cannot believe the difference it makes to contour and highlight your face! I had no idea. All you need is some base, good bronzer, blush, and some white eye shadow or highlighter. It helps to have an eyebrow pencil and eyelash curler as well. Check out the blog and try it yourself. The results are amazing!

6. Favorite Trader Joe's "find":

Quick Steel Cut Oats

Let's face it. How many of us love steel cut oats and realistically have 30-45 minutes in the morning to whip up a batch for breakfast? Not me. Enter: TJ's Quick Steel Cut Oats. They cook in about 8 minutes or less and they are delicious. I may actually venture to say I like the texture of them better than regular steel oats. Top with some fresh or frozen blueberries, sliced banana, a pinch of sugar, a generous dose of cinnamon, a splash of vanilla, a dot of butter, and a dash of milk, and you've got yourself a very quick and easy, healthy, hearty, and delicious breakfast!

Even my baby goes crazy over these oats. He loves them.

7. Favorite Home Work-out:

Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30

Jillian Michaels: Ripped in 30 [DVD]

You've already heard how much I love the DVD, but I'll say it again: I love JM's Ripped in 30!!! Every time I do these workouts, I see and feel results. It's an incredible, full body workout, including cardio and strength, in less than 35 minutes. So doable for a mom with a tight schedule! If you want to focus on abs, check out her 6 Week Six Pack dvd. I saw a huge difference in my abs after doing the workout only 3 times a week for about 4-5 weeks.

8. Favorite Mixing Bowls:

Oxo Good Grips Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls
Oxo Good Grips Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls

I confess, I've had these bowls since we got married 3 1/2 years ago. But I've never talked about nor featured them. I use these bowls almost every single day. They still look brand spankin' new. If you're in the market for new mixing bowls, have a couple extra bucks to spend, and want something amazing, buy these. You will not be disappointed. I would be surprised to find a bad review written about them.

9. Favorite Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe:

Dodds Family cookies

So here's the deal folks. I tried these cookies when Mr. Man and I were courtin'. They were to die for. He told me that when I became a Dodds I would have to learn how to make them as good as his mom. Well, I did just that. And boy are they amazing! Then I took it a step further and made a few tweaks and changes to fit my personality. Because of that, I have created my most favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe in the whole world. I have yet to try another cookie that I like better. Yes, I sound prideful, and maybe I am a little, but I need to give a whole heck of a lot of credit to my amazing mother in law who provided me with the bones for my cookies. As you can see from this picture, her recipe is well loved and dripped on. For me, when I turn to a page in a cookbook that is crinkled, wrinkled, stained, and smeared, I know it is one of the best recipes in the book.

So, thank you, Mom Dodds, for this amazing recipe and an amazing son for a husband!

If you want to check out my version of the recipe, click here 

10. Favorite Toddler product:

Munchkin Snack Catcher
Munchkin Snack Catcher BPA Free - 2 Pack (Colors/Styles Vary) - Munchkin  - Babies"R"Us

Before Bubs was born, a friend of mine had these little snack cups. I thought they were cool but I didn't realize how cool until I got them. You see, my child likes to eat...sometimes. But he doesn't like eating snacks in his highchair, it gets too messy if I put a pile on the couch or floor in reach, and I don't have the time or patience to sit and hold a handful of snack for him to walk over and eat every 5 minutes. Enter: Munchkin Snack Catchers.

Two words: Life Saver.

He now runs around happily clutching his cup, dipping his hand inside whenever he feels the inkling to nibble. He loves it because he can eat when he wants, where he wants, and I love it because it's mess free and I don't have to be the snack holder anymore! Please try it if you're looking for a snacking solution. You should not be disappointed.

And that, my friends, is my list of 10 favorite things! What are some of your favorite things? I'd love to hear from ya!

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Lesson of the Kitchen Brush

Many years ago, when my mom was my teacher, chauffeur, therapist, and cook, she taught me a lesson I have never forgotten: everything has a center of gravity. 

It was one of those science lessons about balance and gravity and stuff, and I didn't believe her at the time. I really didn't think everything had a center of gravity and could balance on something else...so long as you found the center. 

During that lesson we tried balancing all kinds of different things: salt shakers, and, well, actually I don't remember what else. 

My point is, when we spent enough time moving an object minuscule corrections at a time, we eventually found the center of gravity and the object would balance perfectly on top of something else, or at a precarious angle, for a split second or two. (sometimes much longer)

Throughout my life, I have had this little lesson pop into my head on numerous occasions. I have also tried to precariously balance various objects at strange angles to test this belief. Usually after several minutes of minuscule corrections, I eventually find the center, and the object balances for a brief moment. 

I believe that just as everything has a center of gravity, everything also has a point of weakness. 

I found the point of weakness on my favorite kitchen brush this morning. 
It was a sad, sad, discovery. 

However, this incident caused me to ponder and reflect upon points of weakness, centers of gravity, outside force, and how it relates to me and Christ. 

1. Outside Force:

We all know there is an adversary, his name is Satan. He tries to bombard us daily with temptations, feelings, and actions that are very un-Christlike. He is the outside force. He constantly tries to find our points of weakness and break us. 

2. Points of Weakness:

Each of us have a weakness, known or unknown at the time, that our adversary loves to use as his way into our life. It may take awhile to identify, but when Satan finds that weak point, he will begin pushing ever so slightly in hopes that we will not recognize what is happening. When we adapt to the pressure, he pushes harder. It continues on until he has completely led us astray and broken us. However, for some, as soon as that weak point is found, he hits with enough brute force to break us the first time. 

3. Center of Gravity:

We all have a center of gravity, literally and figuratively. Our literal center of gravity is our abdomen. If our abs are strong and tight, we can balance and hold incredible poses. Think of gymnasts and ballerinas: endless fouette turns en pointe or back handsprings and flips on a balance beam. Because their core is engaged and strong, they are able to balance and freely move other parts of the body.

Our figurative (or perhaps somewhat literal as well) center of gravity should be Christ. Should, because for many it is, and many it is not. When our life is firmly grounded and centered in Christ, the whirlwinds of the adversary can blow about us and have no power over us. 

Helaman 5:12 says it much more eloquently than I can: And now, my sons, remember, remember, that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.  

4. Fortifying the Weak:

If we can identify our own personal weaknesses, come unto Christ in humility and faith, He will make weak things become strong. (Ether 12:27)

Recently I have been reading the book of Alma in the Book of Mormon. I just finished the war chapters and the accounts of Captain Moroni. He was constantly fortifying his cities and making the weakest areas become the strongest. When the Lamanites came to battle they were surprised and decided not to fight against the strong parts because they couldn't win. If we could be like Captain Moroni and fortify our weak points so our adversary couldn't win, how much better off would we be? 

Better off than my poor kitchen brush. 

Though I had not discovered a center for the brush to balance on, when I applied quick, brute force, by banging it on the sink edge to remove some oatmeal, I quickly (and depressingly) found the point of weakness and broke it. 

Amazing what lessons we can learn from a simple kitchen brush. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Animal crackers, chocolate milk, and being a Mom

Sometimes I give myself pep-talks in my head. This is one of them:

Babies are funny creatures.

They sleep when you want them awake and they're awake when you want them to sleep.
They throw your gourmet lasagna on the ground and chow down the string cheese.
They hate your enchilada's, fajitas, and sloppy joe's, because all they really want is animal crackers and chocolate milk.

Why does mothering have to be so complicated?

Have you noticed the interesting social media phenomenon that is occurring in regards to mothering and parenting? I only really opened my eyes and realized what's happening by way of this blog post written by a friend. As I read it, I started thinking of all the websites I've read that relate to moms raising kids, and boy are there a lot! I'm quite sure you can google any parenting question you might have and thousands of websites would pop up with the answer. I know this because I've done it. More than ten times.

I'm definitely guilty of scouring mommy blogs for advice, tips, and suggestions. I'm also guilty of writing my own posts about what I think of mothering and tips I might give to people.

I don't believe these things are inherently bad. In fact, they can be quite good! I think the problem lies where the judging and lack of self-confidence start. Most often judgement goes unseen and unheard, but may be felt by a new, frazzled, stressed out mom who reads an article written by another mom who seems to have it all together. Her world is rocked by a stranger who perhaps wrote a phrase that made her feel inadequate, incompetent, and like she's doing the wrong things for her baby. The same feelings can be triggered by dirty looks in a grocery store or mall.

"Judgment, it seems, is the plague of motherhood". -really awesome article

Ain't that the truth?

I've felt it.
I'm guilty of judging.
And I've felt great quantities of self-confidence be sucked out of me when I've read someone's opinion or advice on a certain aspect of mothering that I failed to do, or that has failed to work with my child, regardless of whether or not it's from a complete stranger, and whether or not it was meant in a harmful way (usually meant to be helpful).

How unfair is that?

When I was newly married, I thought "man, now that I'm married I don't have to worry about what people think so much." wrong.

When I was just a few weeks pregnant I thought "wow, now that I'm pregnant I can eat whatever I want and gain weight and I won't have to worry about what people think." wrong.

After I had my baby I thought "cool, I have a baby now so I'll fit in with all the other mom's of babies and I'll feel totally a part of the 'in-crowd' of moms." wrong.

Funny how I'm continually learning that my own self worth cannot be determined by what other people think. If I'm always trying to please someone else, fit in somewhere else, or impress someone else, who am I letting down the whole time? Me.

How does this apply to mothering?

For me, I need to stop caring what other people think. I need to stop thinking that because so-and-so does it with their kids, I have to do it with mine. Or because I'm not doing such-and-such, I'm less of a mom. I have to realize that every single baby is different. Every single mother is different. Every single situation is different. There is no carbon copy rule book for moms that states what is right and what is wrong for every child. (except for neglect, abuse, etc, that are commonly known as wrong and dangerous)

The best instruction manual for parenting we can ever hope for is the scriptures.
The best person we can ask for advice from is God.
The best way we can identify things that work and don't is by trying them with our child and observing their response.

So, celebrate the joys of motherhood!
Rejoice in your accomplishments!
Relish in the moments of cuddling, smiles, hugs, open-mouth kisses, and begging for cookies.
Stop caring what people think of you and how you parent.

Because you know what? This too shall pass. And way too quickly.

Besides, I don't think a meal of animal crackers and chocolate milk is going to scar my baby for life.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Is life ever overwhelming?

Does life ever seem to get a bit overwhelming to you?

It does for me.
Especially at this current phase in my life.
I realized it last night as these words came out of my mouth: "I have two nanny jobs, a position in our YW presidency, and a new calling to be ward camp director", and Mr. Man is taking three Master's classes on top of his 33 credit hours, plus a 4 hour/week job. Which in simple terms = no husband 'til April.

And that's not even our life details.

Are we crazy or what?

Then something new hit me this morning: I like being so busy!
Is that totally weird?

There has been a scripture resonating in my brain during the past few days. It goes something like this:

2 Nephi 31:20 "Wherefore ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting on the words of Christ, and endure to the end, behold...ye shall have eternal life."

Except, late one night, when I shared this with Mr. Man as our "scripture reading" for the day, I changed it unknowingly: "if ye shall press forward, feasting on the words of Christ, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do." (which actually comes from 2 Nephi 32:3)

He groggily asked what that scripture meant to me, and my answer was instantaneous: You gotta keep on keepin' on, trusting and believing in Christ, having hope, loving God, and if you feast on the scriptures, you'll know what to do. You can find an answer to any life problem in the scriptures.

It didn't strike me until sunrise how deep and important the implications for my thought process was. A burden seemed to be lifted from my shoulders.

In the past week, I've attending several different training meetings and I keep hearing the same things over and over. Important much? Apparently. Be spiritually prepared. Know the Gospel. Grow close to God.

Anyone see an ongoing theme here?

I do.
I guess that's what's important.
I wish I could tell ya why I'm sharing these things, but honestly, I don't know.

I always wonder who really reads what I write, and how it affects them. I wonder if I write things that help. Or if I write things that tick people off. Or maybe I write things that are too embarrassing to be shared but because I lack a filter they come out anyway. Sometimes I consider changing how and what I write, but then I don't because I write what is me. This is me. This is my life. And this is how it comes out. You just get to experience it.

I hope you're not ticked off
I hope you're not embarrassed
I hope I've helped you in some way

By the way, what's with the thunderstorms and tornado sirens blaring at 3 am?
I always thought: January = snow.
Should I start reconstructing my whole understanding of the Seasons?

chocolate milk, here I come.

Friday, January 13, 2012

16 unrelated and unorganized things

16 Completely Unrelated and Unorganized things I want to share:

1. I'm cleaning out my ipod. I have some strange music.

2. I'm also not afraid to confess that when I was immersed in the dating scene I used to upload songs that my "boy" at the time liked so I would be more cool, and so I could relate to him more. Most of that stuff I never actually really liked.

3. I don't really feel like I have a music identity. I love Rascal Flatts, Black Eyed Peas, and Incubus. I also love Natasha Bedingfield, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and William Joseph. But mostly I really love Carrie Underwood, Goo Goo Dolls, and LMFAO. My favorite music years were the 90's. I could listen to 90's music all day, every day, and be perfectly content.

4. This is my baby with his buddy. They're 5 days apart. His buddy has always been bigger and my baby has always been small. He's only 13% for weight as a 12 month old.

5. This is my baby with his girl buddy. She is a doll. They were really enjoying the balloons.

6. This is my baby heading outside. I already shared this picture, so nevermind.

7. This is what happened when we decided to feed him frozen blueberries. He loved them. He ate the entire bowl. He wanted the spoon I was holding. He was not mad about being purple. 

8. These are the cupcakes I made for his birthday party. They look like poop on grass. Don't worry. That was my first thought, Mister Man's first thought, and every party guest's first thought too. It's easier to just say it outright instead of having everyone think it and get all uncomfortable and stuff. 

9. Just a little decor. What a boring picture.

10. My boys. They really mean the world to me. My bigger boy gave me a nice massage last night. It was really sweet and something that hasn't happened since we lived in Orem. What a hunk-of-a-man. 

11. For some reason every mom thinks their first child on their first birthday will have a ball smashing and inhaling his first cake. Most mom's take pictures of this milestone. What veteran mom's know and don't tell new mom's is that most kids don't actually smash the cake immediately, often not at all. Most kids don't want to touch the strange thing. The pictures that come from this event are often staged by the dad smashing the kids hands into the frosting and the kid proceeding to rub them all over his face in an attempt to remove the foreign substance from his extremities. This process is repeated to make the situation look more realistic until the child either screams in protest, refuses to participate, or decides to taste the sugar and realizes it's actually delicious. Not saying any of this happened...

12. I needed to pictate and document proof that I have one little creative bone in my body and can actually produce semi-festive concoctions. These were birthday cupcakes.

13. Snow day. The twenty minutes of dressing, exploring, photographing, and cleaning up, was one of the best twenty minutes in my life. Mostly because this little dude kept toddling up and down our hallway. He looked ridiculously cute and silly and we kept laughing at him. Which made him laugh. Which made us laugh. 

How could you possibly not giggle at this little bundled up ball of cuteness?

14. These things were actually kind of related. I should have titled this "16 things about Bubs." Except for the music and ipod part. 

15. For some reason I've been getting extremely stir crazy lately. I feel like I need a big change in my life. My life feels a little stagnant and a little boring. (it's really not) I actually have lots of exciting things going on. Things like callings, a toddler, and, and, uh, callings, and uh, a toddler, I suppose. Mostly I just really want to move or get a puppy! Now! I'm a "now" kinda girl...waiting is not my forte.

When I think about the past 3 1/2 years we've been married, we've had big changes occur about every year or year and a half, which means I'm due for a change. I think that change might have to be re-arranging my living room tomorrow... 

16. I have now been doo-daddling around on the computer for 2 hours. My ipod is half cleaned out, I searched for puppies, and I wrote a blog post. What a productive morning. I think I'll put on some makeup now...maybe go to Costco or something. Make myself useful in some way...

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Super Powers

Random quotes I made up while cleaning my kitchen:

Sometimes my need for chocolate overrules my want to be skinny. -me

A napping baby is God's gift to moms. -me

Ah, that blissful moment when the baby falls asleep for his nap. -me

Have you ever stopped to consider different powers of things in your life? Things like, the power of smell, the power of a sincere compliment on something very important and personal to you, the power of a smile, the power of someone who will listen, or even the power of a hurtful comment, intentional or not.

Today I have been considering powers.

The power of a sincere compliment is astonishing.
The power of a smile is magical.
The power of someone who will listen is incalculable.
The power of a hurtful comment, intentional or not, is devastating.

But the power of smell is something that forever surprises me.

Now, I'm not talking dirty diaper, stinky chicken, rotting black beans, smell. I'm talking about a smell that triggers intense nostalgia. I only know of one smell that has that particularly powerful effect on me.

It's a Bath & Body Works lotion: Irresistible Apple. 

During my first year of teaching Kindergarten in my very own classroom, a bottle of this lotion somehow made it's way into my life, into my purse, and onto my desk. Since Utah is what I would consider a desert climate, this lotion proceeded to make it's way onto the backs of my hands every single morning of my job. At that time I thought nothing of it. It was just another lotion I loved the scent of and managed to get in the habit of using daily.

Now, since I have moved across the country, had a baby, and am not teaching school anymore, whenever I use Irresistible Apple, my mind and body are violently whirled back to that classroom with the wall of windows, squeaky metal desk, hum of a mini fridge, uncomfortable chair, Mac keyboard under my fingers, and the promise of children soon flooding in with "Hi, Mrs. Dotts!" (they never could say my name right) For an intense, brief moment in time, I return to the room where I was baptized by fire as a teacher and learned many life lessons I will never forget.

It's intoxicatingly nostalgic.
Thus, I presently rarely wear Irresistible Apple. 

Saturday, January 7, 2012

One year ago today...

One year ago today:

This technically was a year ago yesterday, when I first entered the hospital. 
Before all the real pain started. 

28 hours later....

Definitely not my most glamorous moment, but nothing is more joyous than meeting and holding your brand new baby for the first time.

Very much in love.

My little, tiny baby...

...is not so little and tiny anymore. 

In fact he's pretty big.
And pretty cute.
And pretty dang awesome.

I feel pretty good too.
Emotionally, I'm much more stable.
Physically, I am down 45 pounds from the day I delivered a year ago.
Overall I feel so much more confident and thrilled to be a mom.
In fact, I actually love it.
A lot.
I have been having so much fun with our little boy, and I am so happy to have him in our lives!
He truly fills my life with joy. 

Now if only he would cuddle like this again...
Maybe when he gets a little older and realizes it's fun to cuddle with mom.
I can only hope.

It's amazing how a year can pass so quickly.
Last night and many times today I had moments of remembering that day (days?) in the hospital leading up to the birth of our son. It was definitely an experience I'll never forget! I'm so grateful to be a mom, and especially to be a mom of our sweet, baby boy! I love you, Bubs!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Of greetings, birthdays, weather, and a game

I wish I had some really insightful, entertaining, thought provoking, intelligent, funny, and cool blog post prepared for today.

Instead I have a brain dump.
More of a brain blank actually.
My brain feels a little numb.

Awhile ago someone gave a talk in church about some subject and as part of it he went on a tangent about greetings. By greetings I mean, when you talk to or see someone and they say "Hi, how are you?" and you say "I'm good, how are you?" Well, he went on a little tangent about how empty this greeting is in the following examples:

-It's empty for the greeter because: often times they really don't care to know how you really are, or they just ask as a mere act of cordialty. (not a word.)

-It's empty for the greetee because: a. they don't typically know if the greeter wants to know how they really are, b. it may be just a cordial gesture from the greeter, or c. they don't want to bestow their true state of being upon someone who is merely saying "hi."

Thus, all around it really should not be such a common greeting. But, for some odd reason it seems to be.

A very disappointing element of this whole exchange is when the greetee fails to take the opportunity to express his true feelings and state of being, upon being asked, when deep down he really needs someone to listen.

But the most disappointing element is when the greetee really, really needs to talk and needs someone to listen, but just offers the "I'm good, thanks," response.

I'm guilty of both of these things.
Very guilty.

It's quite tragic actually.

I'm also a bit guilty of asking an empty "how are you?" upon occasion, although I hope that anyone whom I come in contact with will know that if they need to express their true state of being in response to my question, I am always willing and available to listen and offer support!!

Perhaps from this moment on I will strive to make a more heartfelt effort of asking people how they really are instead of using it as a mere greeting.

Back to that one Sunday. While I listened to this talk, I didn't think much of it. I thought it made sense but I couldn't figure out why he was so passionate about this. I think I understand a little better these days.

Anyway, in other news, my baby is turning 1 on Saturday! Not quite sure how that happened so fast. However, it is very exciting. It's mind blowing to think about all that has happened in one year's time.

Also, it's gorgeous outside. Unusually warm for January.
Although sometimes I wish it would snow.
I haven't seen any snow this season yet, and it's a little depressing.

I kicked my hubby's butt in Mexican Train last night. And today. And maybe again tonight. we'll see.
If you don't know what Mexican Train is, we need to become better friends.

The End.