Friday, October 2, 2015

Second Amendment

I've been thinking a lot about gun control today. Another mass shooting this week has a lot of people thinking about gun control.  Mass shootings are tragic and really do make me question our right to keep and bear arms. Maybe we're misunderstanding the original purpose behind the amendment.  It seems like we should make it harder for crazies to get guns. My dear Watson and I usually disagree on the subject. He loves guns and he loves his right to have a gun in order to protect his family. But, we've had conversations about how we will never own a gun for protection. A gun for protection means it's either always loaded, or the ammo is close enough that you can load it fast enough to actually protect your family.  This increases the risk of scary mistakes when you have curious kids. Our guns are for recreational purposes only (hunting and shooting targets).  If guns are just cool and fun to have, then again, maybe we should be making them harder to get. We don't want dumb people to have guns, right? (My dear Watson says that although we won't keep a loaded gun or ammo anywhere near, in the end, our guns really are for protection even if we never use them as such. I get his point). 

I did a little reading today and sort of reached an understanding about my stance on gun control.  It seems to me like the biggest issue for the founding fathers when they wrote the second amendment was to make sure they created a check (checks and balances ya know?) in the case of tyrannical government.  As long as the people are allowed to have guns, the government really can't ever become oppressive and tyrannical. Americans are born with an appreciation for our rights, and we'll fight for them. 

We met a lot of Asylum seekers from Africa while we were in Portland last year. They're running from their country because their government is out to get them. If they were gaining too much recognition at work, maybe they were part of a resistance group or just simply educated, the government would find them and kill them and their families unless they could escape. Many of them have scars from the savage abuse inflicted on them by their government. Many of them had to leave their families behind. I don't really know, but I'm guessing the people in countries like this don't have a right to bear arms. Or if they do, it's extremely difficult to get them. 

Our government is powerful, but if we're just talking about numbers, the number of people in our government is a lot less than even the number of people in my small city. Just the idea of that, and the fact that those people are allowed to have guns, places a check on our government. For me It's not so much about our right to actually shoot people (I don't support shooting people), but about our right to gather together and protect ourselves and our families from a tyrannical govenrment, should one ever come into existence. 

In the end, I support the right of individuals to own guns. It means we have to keep them affordable and they can't be too hard to get. I also support finding some way to keep guns out of the hands of the wrong kinds of people. My dear Watson says the hard thing about that is if you give them an inch, they'll go a mile.  If you add some controls, where will they ever stop? 

P.S. I don't claim to know everything. For me, this is about coming to understand how I feel about issues that affect me. Feel free to disagree. 

Thursday, August 20, 2015

How to keep A 15 Month old Entertained...or Not

Since returning from Utah, I've been scouring the internet (a.k.a. Pinterest) for ideas to keep my 15 month old busy....on a budget, in small town, in a house with no AC.  This is my report on some of the ideas I found that worked for me. 


You can easily make your own Play-doh at home (sweet! budget friendly). It takes about 10 minutes to mix together, an hour for it to cool, and then 10 extra minutes per color that you want because you have to knead the dye into the doh by hand.   So after a couple hours you have yourself 3 to 5 colored play-doh balls and a sore hand and forearm. But the reward, oh the reward, is excellent.  This amount of work will give your 15 month old approximately 120 seconds of F-U-N. Put the play-doh in a Ziploc bag and it may take your baby long enough to open the bag for you to put away a few dishes. 


All you need is a little table or desk (found one for $1.50 at the thrift store, check!) and a few supplies like crayons, colored pencils, paper, tempera paint, etc.  You probably won't even get as far as painting because coloring with colored pencils will keep your 15 month old occupied for so long. 20 seconds.  Two marks on the page and you've got yourself a regular Picasso. Taking the colored pencils out of their case will buy your toddler a few extra seconds of play time.  


If you really want to keep your 15 month old entertained, Bubbles will mesmerize him for 5 whole minutes. One minute of you showing him what to do, a couple minutes of him dipping the wand in the bubbles and then IN his mouth, and then if you're really lucky, he'll dump the bubbles all over the floor and, BAM, a few more minutes of play time splashing around in a soapy mess. 

So after a few hours of prep time, a few dollars out of your pocket, and a boat-load of clean up, you can keep your 15 month old entertained for ten and a half minutes of your day. 

Pinterest Fail.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mom's Day

My baby is one today.  I find myself more emotional than I expected as I think about how this time last year he entered our lives and we had no idea how much we loved him

This child has had 100% of my attention 24/7 for an entire year. He is hooked to my hip, my buddy, my pal. Even though I'd give anything for him to sleep well, I miss him when he sleeps. I love him so much. I'm afraid that as he grows more independent,  my love will somehow change. I don't want that. I wish I could put this love in a jar and save it forever. But, then, if I had jarred my love for him last year when he was born, I would never have known what it felt like to love him as much as I do today. 

My mom is famous for saying that love doesn't divide --- it multiplies. No matter how many children I have, I'll always have enough love to love them more each year. And so it goes on for infinity.

I've been taught all my life that the most important work I can do is within the walls of my home. I've been taught that motherhood is divine. The last year of motherhood has not necessarily felt important or divine. It has mostly felt hard. But, I believe what I've been taught is true, and I'm on a quest to KNOW it for myself. I'm starting an Instagram journal where every Monday I'll post something that helps me understand the greatness of my role as mother. I'll call it #motherhoodmonday.  I hope to keep it up for a year, and print a chatbook at the end of the year complete with all I've learned. I hope in a year I'll understand a little better,  and I have a feeling the learning won't stop there.

I love my mother, I love my mother-in-law, and my sisters who are my second third and fourth mothers. My friend said the other day that we are all growing to be mothers. These women in my life are redwood trees and have helped me become the little sproutling that I am. Thank you for watering me and helping me to grow. Here's to motherhood!