Saturday, June 16, 2012

"MOM?? You're going to climb a rock wall?? At your age??"

Today I climbed an entire rock wall. The National Guard set up a climbing wall in the parking lot of a local grocery store. Why not? I thought. Even if I'm (mumble) pounds overweight, I'm going to give it a shot. In fact, the whole family gave it a shot. I am proud to say that I made it all the way to the top despite a sudden and nearly paralyzing fear that the wind would blow the entire structure down on top of me. I pushed the button and I earned my National Guard lanyard fair and square.

See? That's me.

Husband, Elannah, and Sophia also made it all the way up, Elannah and Sophia multiple times. But everyone tried, including the little boys.

Here's Elannah just getting started on one of probably three or four climbs.

Above, from left: Elannah, Husband, Joseph, and Sian. We dominated the wall.
Below: Joseph had had enough, but Husband kept going.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Shoulder Angel, Take a Bow!

Somehow, the word has been going around that I'm great at putting together posters and flyers for events. So far, I've been put in charge of three publicity committees relating to stake and regional church activities.

The problem with this is that I have explained over and over that it is not I who has the skills, it is my husband. He's the one who is a whiz with Adobe Illustrator. All I do is say, "My dear, I need to create a flyer, and by I, I mean you. Can you help me?" And he sits down at his computer and I sit nearby on the Total Gym to give him moral support (which, sadly, is the only time I touch the Total Gym) and within 15 minutes he's put together something fantastic. Everyone oohs and ahhhs at the finished product and I modestly flutter my eyelashes at their compliments and make it a point to remind them that all I did was cheerlead and tell Husband what information needs to be included. But people don't listen to that part. I guess, as the messenger handing over the finished flyer, I get all the glory.

I find it truly unsettling to be given credit for skills I just don't have and couldn't even begin to fake in a pinch.

The other day, I was attempting to sing. Sure, I can read music and carry a tune, but what comes out of my mouth is nothing like what I would love to hear coming out of my mouth. I am extremely aware of the difference between reality and fantasy in my singing abilities, and you'd never catch me showing up to one of those reality television show auditions absolutely convinced of my phenom status only to become the butt of a horrible joke. For a second, I was tempted to feel badly about myself, but decided I really didn't want to go down that road. It's just so depressing, and I don't have time to be all depressed about stupid things. Therefore, I was able to hear Shoulder Angel reminding me that I do have talents and skills in other areas, talents I have worked hard to improve, even if they aren't always as polished as I impatiently wish they were.What's even more exciting is that I could add to my arsenal, given enough time and quality practice.

Husband can manipulate Illustrator better than I can play the piano. He has spent time and effort learning it and utilizing it. If it was important enough to me, I could learn it, too. And he could learn to play the piano and read music. I've signed Sian and myself up for a course in playing the organ, which is being taught by Linnea, who is fantastically talented musically and in other ways. She is sharing her talents and I get to improve mine. Human life value is exploding all over the place!

Monday, June 11, 2012

24K Food Analysis

My in-laws are all settled in their new home, and things are getting back to normal again. It's very nice having them just down the street.

My mother-in-law (MIL) showed me something she's been doing. She's been "gold-chaining" her food, and it's really working for her. I had never heard of it, but being the enthusiastic learner of all things light and energy, I took to it right away. My FIL and Hubby? Well, they're far more skeptical, although they see it works for MIL and can't deny the results.

What you do: hold a gold chain (must have some real gold in it, even if it's a lower amount) over whatever food it is you wish to test. It's best to stand or sit at a height where you are not stretching or straining to hold the chain. Tuck your elbow into your side (for support) and hold the top of the chain (or a gold pendant that is attached to the chain) with your thumb and first finger on your dominant hand so that it is hanging vertically over the food. Keep very still. After a bit, the end of the chain will begin to swing back and forth, eventually turning in a circle. If it's a counter-clockwise circle (or "anti-clockwise," if you're British), the food isn't good for you. If the chain swings clockwise, it's something that will benefit your body. A few times, I've watched the chain swing back and forth but never circle. Since it happens over and over with those particular foods, I figure swinging with no circling means the food is neutral -- neither beneficial nor detrimental.

I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "You loony nut, the phone's ringing. It's the 60s, and they want their hippies back." Fair enough. Read on and decide for yourself.

MIL has had a touchy stomach for a number of years. The wrong foods will cause her stomach pain, so she's very careful about what she eats. When a friend of hers suggested using a gold chain and a doctor admitted that though he sees no logical reason why it should work, many of his patients use this with great success, she decided to try it. She immediately found that avoiding foods that were not beneficial according to the chain has nearly eliminated her stomach pain. She'd avoided pain altogether for a while until I cooked a family dinner last Sunday and roasted the carrots in vegetable oil (I had forgotten to buy coconut oil). The carrots are fine, but vegetable oil is a no-no for her. She liked them so much she still had some, but she paid for it.

Curious, I bought a gold chain and put on it a gold heart locket I've had for years so I could try it for myself. It's been a very unscientific study, but the results are very interesting. I tested things I already knew I can't comfortably eat (cow's milk, bananas) and things I know make me feel good (almond and coconut milks, quinoa). I don't have a clue about most foods, so I've been trying everything, including separate ingredients and combinations. Grapes are neutral for me, but I'm a "go" for cherries. Almond and coconut milks are, indeed, beneficial for me, but quinoa merited a resounding counter-clockwise circle. NO! I love quinoa! Corn is a no, and so is pork. Chicken and turkey are okay. Butter is good but mayo and shortening are bad. And so on. MIL's and my results are often not the same, but, then, we have two very different blood types. For instance, she's okay for eggplant, but I got a negative result. She's okay with corn and pork, too.

I realize how this sounds, and I'm writing this a little tongue-in-cheek. For the record, I also tested the dining room table (neutral) and my own arm (definitely a no). I still have the chain in my pocket, and I'm testing just about every food I eat out of curiosity. (Also curious: I found the chain doesn't work very well if it's been stored near money. When I keep it away from coins and close to my skin, it seems to work better and faster.)

I figure it's merely another form of kinesiology. You can do a similar test on foods by holding up one arm parallel to the floor while holding the food (or another edible substance, like liquids or medication) in question in your other hand. If another person can push your extended arm down easily, the food you're holding is not beneficial to you. If you can resist the push, the food is beneficial. It's all about energy, and I'm far more inclined to believe this sort of thing is efficacious because of my reading on quantum physics. And besides, it's just fun. Great for parties.