Sophia

Flawed Pony Parenting Logic and Home-schooling

2012-05-02 19.50.16Ever since reading this story and that one about the kid with the My Little Pony backpack, my mind has been reeling.

To make a longer story short, here’s the news recap hailing from North Carolina.

This 10-year-old kid was being bullied at school because of his blue fuzzy My Little Pony backpack. His mom went to the school to complain. The school counselor mentioned that the easiest solution would be for the kid to get a new backpack. The principal later called the child’s mother and told her that the child was no longer allowed to bring the backpack to school. The mom flipped out. The mom now homeschools.

I have to say that last sentence, “The mom now homeschools,” does not surprise me in the least. It seems that nowadays the homeschooling road is the most popular for a lot of unsatisfied parents. I am not here to pass judgement on homeschooling parents. In fact, I might end up homeschooling one of mine next year if she doesn’t get her school transfer. I am here however to pass judgement on flawed logic and parents who can’t be honest with themselves.

First of all, let me make two things very clear. One – I am NOT o.k. with bullying. In this instance and in every instance the bully children should have been reprimanded and disciplined. (I don’t know if they were appropriately or at all from the news stories.) However, typically bully children come from bully homes, so there is only so much a school can do to change behavior.

Secondly, I believe children should be given space to be who they want to be. You want to wear a pink tutu and your 12 and a boy? Go for it. Are you a girl who wants to play football? More power to you.

Now, to the point I really want to make that seems to be widely ignored in modern bully stories. Parents, pull your heads out….Every day, you are sending your kids off to war…..and you are not equipping them with the skills that they need.

What skills? The skills of socialization, survival, problem-solving, and leadership to name a few.

Here is some flawed logic that I have seen people use to support their choice to homeschool.

Sweeping generalizations (bad stereotyping)
All the kids at that school are mean. They are all bad kids. I’m pretty sure this is never the case.

Hasty conclusions with inadequete support (more than one personal example for validity for your argument)
In homeschooling this can look like: Well, wow, this kid was homeschooled and went to Harvard, therefore my kid can also.

Non sequitor (It does not follow)
I graduated from high school therefore I can teach my kids til they graduate. Yes, you can, but this logic is really bad.

Casual fallacy (one event merely follows the first and isn’t necessarily because of cause/effect)
My child got in trouble at school today because his teacher was in a bad mood. Is that the real reason? Or is your child honestly having behavior problems that need to be addressed? Maybe your child is causing the teacher’s foul mood and not the other way around.

Ad hominem attack (an argument that is not balanced but based solely on personal opinion)
Common core is awful therefore my kids should not be schooled with it.

Circular reasoning (the evidence and conclusion restate each other)
Schools are failing because teachers are failing.

False dichotomy or false dilemma (Either/or arguments that oversimplify complex answers to two solutions)
I can either keep my kids in a public school I am not happy with or I can homeschool. These are not the only two solutions to a complex problem.

I know of many parents who have used very bad logic as their sole foundation for homeschooling. I also know many parents who are really harming their kids by homeschooling ineffectively.

So what does this have to do with the pony kid who was bullied? I believe at the root of both homeschooling and bullying lies a much bigger problem: parents who are not honest with themselves. Parents who are failing and laying the blame on someone else.

In the case of the boy with the pony backpack, I believe the parents failed to teach their child how to be confident in his pony-touting ways. I would never send my kid off to war without the weapons he would need to fight it, and you can be sure that I also would not let my child walk into a cafeteria of potential bullies without first discussing how to defend himself in his unconventional backpack/lunchbox choices.

Likewise, I would not just believe homeschooling to be the best thing for my kids if they were having trouble in public schools. As adults, we have troubles coming at us from every direction. We can’t just hide away at home to avoid our problems. We have to face them head on. The really scary part about a larger percentage of the population homeschooling is the fact that all of the home-schooled kids first learned behaviors at home that may be the biggest culprit in them not having success at school. The solution of pulling them out of school to address the problems that are only perpetuated at home is totally counterproductive. Unless, of course, we gain awareness collectively as a family and put change in motion.

Before you feel all judged, let me give you several examples from my life as a concerned mother.

First, we had a terrible experience with public schooling at an inner-city school in Knoxville, TN where we used to live. The principal was bad. Most of the teachers were heroic. The majority of the student population was grossly neglected. The school was neglected. The playgrounds were falling apart. The school didn’t participate in field trips. EVER. Abigail’s second grade teacher was in her first year and totally ill-equipped. Frustrations were high every day. Abigail would come home crying because the teacher made the whole class miss recess again even though she never personally had bad behavior. She no longer could drink chocolate milk at lunch because the principal pulled it off the shelf with the logic that it was causing misbehaved kids to misbehave even more. Violence was taking place in the second grade. One boy threw a desk at another and broke his nose.  Forget the fact that no learning was taking place. How could it with all the other distractions? Yes, I had every right to pull Abigail out and home-school her especially after addressing our concerns with the administration to not have anything change. We didn’t pull Abigail. She survived the second grade and the next year we humbly and gratefully accepted a “No Child Left Behind” school transfer. Abigail’s new school was a haven and we all loved it. When Abigail went on her first field trip in third grade she was in seventh heaven. Abigail is now fourteen. She often talks about her experiences at her first school. They shaped her into what she is: one resilient, tough, and adaptable kid.

Do I judge any parent who pulled their kid out? No. Not at all. In fact I would applaud their courage. However, I do think that if a parent makes a choice to home-school, they better look around and have a very honest assessment of what their child is going to learn at home. When one home-schools they have to recognize that their child is now being influenced almost solely by their family. Are you going to give them all the experience they need to thrive in the real world? Are you going to be perpetuating in them bad behaviors that you just don’t want to fix: sleeping til noon, having bad hygeine, learning as little as possible, not teaching discipline, etc. If you are going to home-school, I think you should ask yourself WHY your kids are (or would) struggling in public school in the first place….the source of their trouble is more than likely YOU, not the school. The kid at Abigail’s school that was throwing desks was more than likely frustrated with his bad teacher, but the reason he threw a desk while Abigail came home crying every day was the difference of what was taught in their home. It is hard to change. Possible, but hard. You better have a really fine-tuned game plan of how you are going to change yourself and teach your children at the same time.

My other experience in still playing out. Sophia is twelve and does not want to have to attend the school in the boundary of where we just moved. She has not a single friend at this new school. We are working with the school district to get her a school transfer next year back to the junior high where her friends will be attending based on the extreme anxiety she is having over the situation. The district asked for a letter from a health-care professional. We went to the doctor last week. I explained Sophia’s anxiety and her shyness and tendency to isolate. I then said, “If we can’t get this transfer, I will probably just home-school her for a year until we move back to our old school boundary.” The doctor didn’t shy away with her response, “If you are worried about her isolating, wouldn’t home-schooling be the worst possible scenario?” She was right! Anyone who knows me, knows that I in no way am modeling shy behavior for my daughter. She came that way. I, however, as her parent, have to make decisions that will help her overcome her weaknesses instead of feed into them.

Wow, this post got long quick. I think the very hardest part of parenting is being able to get outside ourselves and our flawed personal-protecting logic to honestly assess how our weaknesses are promoting the same in our children. And even harder than the honest assessment is changing. The change has to start with us as.  Yes, this can be done, whether or  not we send our kids to public school or if we home-school, if we are teaching our kids to be bullies or our children are being bullied, but by all means, let’s make sure we are doing the hard work. We owe that to our kids.

 

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Everyone is insufferable, except for Sophia, she’s funny.

This is a comical moment I have been waiting to share until after the pregnancy announcement. The first three months of this pregnancy were pretty rough for me. I was super tired, emotional, and pretty cranky. I tried my hardest to power through but everyone who lives we me knows that I just wanted to sleep. The kids were pretty good at leaving me alone. Mostly because they probably didn’t want me to bite their heads off. Bless their little hearts. Sophia, however, always has to take things a step further. She is the ultimate peacemaker.

sophia

So one day as we were driving home from school. I complained out loud about Sophia’s teacher. (Please don’t find this post Mrs. Arnold – but if you are here by some crazy chain of events, you might as well know, you are total control freak. You scare me and I’ve been a room parent a long time.)

It was around Valentine’s Day. (Of course back in the beginning of the year I had been tricked into being the classroom parent for the hardest room in the school. All the PTA parents didn’t feel the need to inform me of such, but I should have known when they weren’t willing to do the job themselves. They are always willing to do everything.)

The 6th grade teachers have high expectations. They want us to plan a whole carnival for every holiday and to coordinate with parents from the other room so that we can all combine the fun. WHAT A PAIN! I did my duty for Halloween and Christmas and trapped a lot of other parents along with me, but this time I had politely told Mrs. Arnold that I would be glad to do the obligatory Valentine swap and treat but that I just couldn’t find the energy for The Ringling Brothers. She promptly e-mailed back that she would handle it . (Which probably means that the parents from the other room who got the whole thing dumped on them hate me – so be it – if they can’t set boundaries that is their problem.  And they probably aren’t pregnant so I will gladly let them handle it.) So I was  updating Sophia on where we stood with Valentine’s and was murmuring like I often do.

Sophia being the sweet girl that she is has learned to use humor as her go-to escape from negativity.

She silenced me mid-sentence. “Mom is that you, or is that the tadpole talking?”

I laughed at my daughter’s greatness and answered…

“The tadpole, of course….it’s an ornery little thing.”

That is my story and I am sticking to it, Mrs. Arnold.

Sophia’s First Cast

If you haven’t noticed I’ve been working on
importing my posts from my previous blogs to this new space.
The OCD in me can’t stand having all of our family stories all over the web.
I’m really happy with the result, although I have a lot of formatting to do.
{Notice the pages above where I will be categorizing the old posts.}
One of the great discoveries in this process today are some drafts that I never published.
I plan to publish them a little at a time.
Today we start with our family’s first broken arm.
It happened to Sophia at gymnastics in 2012.
It was pretty traumatizing, especially since shortly after breaking it,
I told her to do another cartwheel to make sure it was really hurt. I’ll never live that down.
Upon finding these photos this morning, my nose was instantly assaulted
with the smell from under this cast the day we had it removed.
If I had to tell you what it smelled like after six weeks I would say:
a mixture of Shrek, rotten corpse, and bad broccoli.
Posted by Picasa
Lucky for Sophia, the second time she broke an arm it was the other one.
Lucky for our pocketbooks and sinus passages, it fell off by itself.

You’re Gold.

I’ve thought many times that I should dedicate this song to my girls.
They are gold literally and figuratively.
If you don’t get it, remember our last name is Gold.
I married into a great last name, but even better than the name is the fact that I am a mother to four beautiful daughters who are truly golden. They shine so bright and make me the richest woman in the world.

you're gold

Here are Bella and Sophia mining for gold at The Mormon Batallion Center last week.

I was impressed today by this video made by a bunch of old stuffy Mormon clergy.
It touched my heart as I thought about these old dudes putting aside their stodginess to get a very important message out to the youth that they are called to lead.

You’re gold. You’re all gold.

We had a lady get up in church yesterday and talk about her newly appointed position as the suicide prevention specialist for the state of Utah. She talked about how excited she was to get out an important message to the kids in the state of Utah. Her message is the same: You’re all gold. She said she may not be able to teach them the gospel, but somehow she would find a way to get the message into the kids….they are of infinite worth.

This is a concept with which I have a personal struggle. In fact I received a message today from another lady from church. She sat through a lesson and heard a comment I had made. She took a moment today to say this to me:

Just thought I would pass along this quote to you after what you shared in Relief Society. It’s something I’m working on too! “One of the greatest weaknesses in most of us is our lack of faith in ourselves. One of our common failings is to depreciate our tremendous worth.” Elder Perry We need to try to remember that we are daughters of Deity and are so loved. Have a Great Day! P.S. My impression of you is you seem very giving and an incredible mom.

This beautiful little note was such a contrast to the barrage of texts I got last Friday from a disgruntled family member. [Noted: She had every right to be upset with me after my last post that I ignorantly shared and very promptly removed  – My hubby helped me understand that although my quest for honesty is very noble, I can’t force it upon other people or air their dirty laundry] Anyhow, I heard what she had to say but she kept dishing out advice via many texts. It was overwhelming and I couldn’t even process all she had to say. I just agreed with her and tried to keep the interaction to a minimum. She was right, I was wrong, but the circumstances reminded me of my own tendency to think I should control how other people do or do not act instead of just loving them where they are.

How much more motivating it is to hear a person tell me one good thing about myself. In fact, it’s a million times easier for me to to take advice when I know someone truly believes in my worth and wants to lift me up. I am praying specifically this week that God will help me see everyone as the gold that they are, especially within my family. I also hope that my very overwhelming experience from last week will help me remember to keep my compliments at full-tilt and my advice to minimum.

{Family member if you are reading this – which I hope you are not – I love you – I understand you – We are very much alike – I have processed and reprocessed everything you had to say and will try to be better – Please don’t flood my phone with texts again. My heavy heart can’t handle it. Today I am just working on trying to remember that you are gold, and the even harder task is convincing myself that I am gold too.}

Talking to the Girls about Motherhood {Vlog}

Just having a lazy summer morning with Sophia and Bella.

We interrupt Buffy The Vampire Slayer for the following message…

Contrary to popular belief giving birth is not the hardest part of motherhood, it’s the monotony of taking care of the children physically

forever and ever and ever and ever….

(Oh and I had food in my teeth not because I didn’t brush my teeth the night before but because I had gotten up two hours earlier to take Abigail to soccer conditioning – and yes those are pizelle cookies in my teeth because I love sneaking baked goods for breakfast.)

And for those of you who just can’t get enough, here are more videos of Sophia and Bella at their school’s annual end-of-the-year dance festival a few weeks ago.

When it says 4th grade it really means 5th grade and visa versa….good enough.

Motherhood: less work, more joy.

joy of motherhood

I had an epiphany this morning as I sat on the couch watching the girls get ready for school. One of the reasons I am not enjoying motherhood is because I associate it with work. Someone always wants something from me and I feel depleted much of the time.

I am a really hard worker. Work is an escape for me in a way, so when I am not happy, I just work harder and try not to think about stuff. I use my physical body as a barrier between my emotions and my reality. As they say, “I power through.”

This week at work has been especially exhausting. Tonight is my last night and the relief I feel to mark off this stressor in my life is a lot bigger than I had realized it would be.  This morning after our morning family time, I gave myself permission to just sit and do nothing because I am physically and mentally drained.

I watched as Abigail ran out the door. LG came and gave me a kiss and slogged out to work. (I smiled knowing that he will be tired all day because spending time with me last night was important to him) Then Sophia ran out of her room  and down the stairs to fetch a pair of pants from her laundry basket in the laundry room. She was in a newly acquired shirt (hand-downs are great) and just her undies and socks. Watching her backside try to stealth-fully trot made me smile. She was so cute with her little bum hanging out. It reminded me of when she was a baby. How those baby bums are delightful.

Then Bella came and asked me to braid her hair. It’s not a task I particularly enjoy and because I am usually in bed or running around like a chicken with my head cut off, she doesn’t ask it of me. Just being on the couch made me available for something that makes her happy. In that moment I felt joy. I felt the joy of motherhood.

My epiphany: I am missing out on the joy of motherhood because I allow myself to be too busy to feel it. I have to slow down. I have to quit working so hard. I don’t need to use all my time as a mother working, I need to use a lot more of  my time as a mother to breathe in the beautiful people in my life.

Who the heck is Mae Jemison

About a month ago my 5th grader, Sophia, came home with the information on the school’s wax museum. She was to pick an American hero to impersonate. They gave her a list of great choices such as Eleanor Roosevelt, Helen Keller, and Rosa Parks. We talked the choices over and forgot about it.

A few weeks later, after a long night at work (I now work 4 nights a week to subsidize what we call the Obama tax/health care) I came home and helped LG with the delayed bedtime rituals. As we went through Sophia’s backpack, she remembered to tell me that she had chosen her wax museum hero that day because it was the deadline. (Way to be an absent mom! – And how I would pay) My excitement was immediately erased as she informed us that she had chosen….wait for it……

Mae Jemison.

“Who the heck is Mae Jemison?” my hubby and I questioned simultaneously.

“The first female African-American astronaut,” Sophia answered innocently enough. (But I know that deep down inside she was really like, “I’ll show you, mom, for being at work.”

My mom radar immediately alarmed, “Did you say African-American?” as I carefully reanalyzed my 11 year old very blued eyed, very blonde haired, very Caucasian daughter.

It’s times like these that I am 100% convinced someone has hidden a secret “gotcha” camera somewhere in the couch cushions. And times like these happen every day at our house.

LeGrand couldn’t contain his overly exuberant smile headed in my direction with the subliminal message of, “Thank heavens I have the Y chromosome. It’s all you babe.”

Today I am proud to announce that I not only immediately committed, but embraced my daughter’s dream of being the first Caucasian girl dressed as the first African American female astronaut.

After 2 hours at the thrift store, 1 hour at the sewing machine, 5 hours at the computer, 1 hour printing, taping, and pinning (and re-washing and pinning after the other daughter’s judgement error of spilling a bottle of coke on the orange outfit waiting to be worn on top of the nightstand ), 1 hour of wig trimming, 2 hours overseeing the poster making, 1 hour of help with the speech, and 3 hours of searching for the right make-up, a stroke of genius with the snow boots that look like they belong on the moon, and 30 minutes of haggling (and losing) to the girl to let me do it before she went to school, I gladly share the end result.

And yes, she tore off the wig in less than 
two seconds after I turned off the camera.
(I forgot to mention the special trip to Sally Beauty Supply
 for what I learned is called a wig cap.)
And even then the wig was still too itchy.
White girls are so whimpy
about their beauty aides.
It’s at times like these that
homeschooling doesn’t sound so crazy.

And just in case you moms are ever
called upon for the same task,
here is everything you ever need to know
about
Dr. Mae Jemison
in the first person
 I was born on October 17, 1956 (which would make me 57 now) in Decatur, Alabama. My parents were Charles and Dorothy Jemison and I was the youngest of three. I am still alive today and achieving many things.
            I was raised in Chicago and graduated high school at age 16 and went to Stanford University on a scholarship. I graduated from Stanford with two degrees! One was a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering, the other an Associate Bachelor degree in African and Afro-American studies. I later attended Cornell medical school and achieved the requirements to become a medical doctor.  I then went to West Africa with Peace Corps to be a medical doctor from 1983-1985.
            I then came back to America and became a doctor in Los Angeles, California. I was also a dancer so at the time I was deciding which I should be. Should I be a dancer or a doctor? And I still wanted to achieve a childhood dream, a dream I had since kindergarten, I wanted to go to space. Many people told me that I couldn’t go to space because I was a woman. But I applied to NASA to become an astronaut and they accepted me.
            On September 12, 1992, I blasted off into space becoming the very first African-American women ever to go to space. I went into orbit on the Space shuttle Endeavor and I was in space 7 days 2 hours and 30 minutes. My space mission was called STS-47. On that mission I was the science mission specialist. My mission was a joint operation between the U.S.A and Japan. My experiments dealt with bone cell research. With me I brought a picture of my old dance crew. I proved many people wrong that day. I also fulfilled my dream to be an astronaut.
            Since getting back from space I quit working at NASA. For a while I was a professor of developing countries and advanced technology at Dartmouth College. I got to be the only person who has been to space to act on the TV show “StarTrek: The Next Generation”. I have created the Jemison Group which works to bring advanced technology to people worldwide and fosters a love for science in students. Now I speak at a lot of engagements, am the President of two technology companies, and love to spend time my cats in Houston, TX where I live.

Next year, I am hoping Bella will be wise enough to pick Bill Gates, like this smart neighbor.
Of course, we would have to chop off all her hair and dye it blonde.

The Mom Test

It’s 12:50 a.m.
Because I am a mom
this is how I spent the last
15 minutes of my life.

I was in a dream
and then there appeared
Sophia
 my 11 year old
at the side of my bed.
I opened my eyes
because
she was covered in
florescent paint
and saying
something
that 
I couldn’t quite understand.
She called to me
and so I knew
it was important
but I couldn’t
get a handle of what
was happening
in my dream
until I let it
register
“Mom, I just puked.”
I wasn’t dreaming.
I flew out of bed
using the wings
that God installed
just for moments
like these.
If I would have looked
back I would
realize that
my partner in crime
couldn’t help it
that God didn’t
make him for this job
and that is why
he hadn’t moved
an inch
or an eyelid.
Before I knew it
I had stripped
down every inch
of that top bunk.
Of course
it was the top.
And of course
I needed those wings
so as not to
wake the one
sleeping on the bottom.
No need to mention
the smell or color
of the foulness
or how it sloshed
from pillow
to sheet
to comforter.
I looked down at my
daughter
to see her
use the trashcan
I had somehow provided
before flying into action
on the bedding.
The florescent
colors were gone now.
I blinked to make sure.
Before I could get my bearings
I started to remake the bed
and then thought to ask
“Sophia,
do you want to sleep on the couch?”
The answer came quietly,
“Yes mom, that’s a good idea
but I have all this gross stuff
all over me.”
“Is it just on your shirt?”
“I got a little on my cast,
and it’s all in my hair.”
In to the bathroom
we flew.
I cleaned
off her arm cast
(and chuckled
at the thought
of the flu
and a broken arm
at the same time)
with a Clorox wipe
in between
the heaves into the toilet.
I applied
the two plastic
bags and rubber bands
that I had so
neatly stored
under the bathroom sink
yesterday.
I then turned her around
and stripped her down.
She’s at a private age.
11 is tricky.
Somehow I was
instinctual enough
to just know
to have her step into the
shower before removing
her soiled clothes.
“Sophia,
did you start your period, too?”
As in,
on top of
the broken bone
and puking.
She looked at me confused.
“Or did you
just poop your pants?”
She sheepishly answered
that she thought
that wasn’t her period.
I plugged
the tub
and started the warm water.
Then I gathered the
dirty clothes
and the dirty linens
and headed to the laundry room.
I got the worst
loaded into the washer
and realized that the 13 year old
never started her laundry
like her told her to
before heading to work
this afternoon
or yesterday afternoon,
depending on the time.
Thank goodness
for adolescent
irresponsibility.
I grabbed
an extra blanket
and headed back upstairs
to the couch
where I found an
almost empty roll
of duct tape
which someone
had not put away.
The item that
had been alluding
my memory
for the past two days
came to me.
Compound W
needed to be added to
the grocery list.
Baby Caroline’s
wart must be attended to.
Compound W
combined with
duct tape
is the best
antidote
for warts.
I actually
learned that
before I had
kids
if you don’t
count the hubby
and his massive
wart on his right knee
that I cured
shortly after marriage.
I washed and rinsed her hair.
twice.
And handed her
some soap
to take care
of the backside.
I held up her right arm
wrapped in plastic.
Placing back the soap
I told her to rinse with water.
I took care of the towel
which I had given her to rest
her broken arm on.
I guess the ledge on the tub
wasn’t big enough,
it was floating at her feet.
I ran (I mean flew)
into her room
and grabbed her
comfy shorts,
undies,
t-shirt,
and a cami
because times like
these are too harsh for bras
(even if she does
normally wear hers to bed)
and she will appreciate
the extra layer
of support.
How do I know?
Because I am a mom.
And I always pass the test
even when I am failing.
Here I sit
watching, typing,
shaking my head in disbelief,
not even longing
for sleep to come back to me.
Because I am a mom.
And I am always on duty.
Always.
Notice her favorite
scooby doo blankie?
I made it for her
when she was seven
and without even realizing it
I had grabbed it off
the couch downstairs
while fetching
the other warmer
blanket
just
before flying
back upstairs
30 minutes ago.

Sophia the Wise

The name Sophia means wise.
When my Sophia was born 
I took one look into her eyes
and I knew she was an old soul.
Sophia was on our short list,
I knew it meant wise,
and I knew the name belonged to this
little one.
Whenever I take the time to think about it,
I realize that I made the perfect name choice.
I was supported
when yesterday Sophia came home from school.
Her teacher is really into the Chinese zodiac
and Sophia’s class has been getting their fill.
Sophia said that she was born in the year of the snake
and that snakes are wise.
What a coinkydink.

I am so proud of my Sophia.
She is many of the traits listed above:
quiet, unassuming, prefers to work alone,
sympathetic, intuitive, and amorous.
She is an angel.
Truly.
She is also very talented.

I would love to take all the credit
for her compassion, kindness, and nurturing ways,
but she came to us with them.
I know that she is
not just special to me and LG
but she is also special to God.
She embodies God.
She embodies love.
She has blessed my life so much
and she makes me want to be
a better person.
The school rewarded her
yesterday
for being the way she is.
I told her she should call her Grammy
and tell her thanks
because she is so much like
my mother-in-law.

The funniest part of Sophia’s
character connection award
is that Sophia came home
and said,
“Mom, I was so weird-ed out.
I am 11,
I don’t want to be known
for love.”
I am so glad I don’t have to retire yet,
we obviously still  have a lot to learn
about love.
Well Sophia doesn’t,
she has it down.
Maybe I just need to explain.

My Brother’s Take on Mormon Feminism

There has been a lot of talk lately
about a movement of
anti-Mormons
who have penetrated the active church-body
by inviting the women to wear pants to church this Sunday.
I’m privvy to these things because I live in Utah.
It was on the front page of the paper.
LG read part of the article to me
when he was home for lunch
the other day.
We discussed the stupidity of it.
Women have always been able to
wear pants to church.
Why would any woman
want to be a Bishop?
We laughed.
Then LG made my day.
“Alice you look so sexy in a skirt.”
So I posted this on facebook.
Feminist Mormons are planning a “wear slacks to church day” 
to celebrate the similarities between women and men. 
I’d rather celebrates our differences. 
Besides my husband thinks I look hot in a skirt. 
If that means I’m objectified, so be it.

It got a discussion going.
Perhaps my favorite part of the discussion
was my ultra-conservative, gun-slinging, Limbaugh-loving,
football-coaching, huge-dog owning, Idaho-dwelling
brother saying this:
(for my non-Mormon friends –
this first question is what is asked of 
the members to determine
worthiness to attend the temple)
(YM is short of Young Men
YW is short for Young Women)

Yes, feminist crazed ladies,
the men of the church
are not anti-women.
In fact,
they are 
what my brother calls
equal diffrencialists.
I am proud to say
that I now
have a great term to describe
what I am too:
an
equal diffrentialist.
And so is 
She touches on some deep
Mormon doctrine here
and I loved her article.
I’m so grateful for the women of the church
who magnify their callings
and bless the lives of my daughters.
Here are some recent photos
that Sister Seale
e-mailed
of Sophia and her buddies
at their 
female only
activity days
held
every other week.
I love how these photos
showcase what we teach
Godly girls.
Choose the right.

Be modest.

Be tough.
Be beautiful.

It’s crazy to me
that scorned
women can
find these things
wrong.

I don’t want my daughters
to be anything
but
equal diffrentialists.

And trust me,
no woman
should ever want to
be in Cub Scouts instead.
I know,
I’ve been a Scout leader
three different times
in my
“mom only to daughters”
lifetime.