Monday, January 23, 2012

New to This

This public blogging is new to me. Please be patient as I learn the rules, the ropes, the pros, the cons and learn from my mistakes. I just want an avenue for writing my ideas and developing my thoughts. I mean no offense and would appreciate any critiques and constructive criticism.

Thank you.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Different Job

Our job is unconditional love. The job of everyone else in our life is to push our buttons. --Byron Katie

When I found this quote a couple of weeks ago, it kind of brought everything I've been thinking about lately full circle.

I've been thinking a lot about "Grace". Trying to figure it out - define it; refine it; visualize it; accept it; practice it. Totally understanding it might be above my pay grade, though. But I'm working on it.

So far I think I've figured out we've all been given Grace freely and unconditionally and we're supposed to give Grace to others freely and unconditionally. That's the easy part to figure out and I'm still reading trying to increase my understanding. Then I found this article on a blog on The question was not specifically applicable but I thought the overall message addressed a lot of things that are so true but we are all hesitant to admit. I'll probably get in trouble for posting it but I'm going to do it anyway simply because, well, it's my blog and I'm sitting alone in my chair with no one to break my fingers if I do and also because I want to be reminded of the truths in it. And, in the meantime, I'll keep learning about "grace" and how I need to improve.

Here's the link. LIFEadvice - How to Stop the Fighting in Your Family

There. I did it. There are certainly many challenges in there for me to improve on and I'm going to try. I hope others will help me redirect myself when I slip into old comfortable ways. I've learned that's called "Homeostasis" - that slipping back into your old self now and again. But that's a post for another day. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Interested or Committed?

I finally reached my breaking point. My anxiety level rose five notches with every instance of the "imminent failure" blackscreen message. Would this be the time? The realization of how addicted I am to my laptop is frightening. So, anyway, I ordered a new hard drive. I stared at it all through the holidays. Or, rather, it stared at me, taunting me. Trying to entice me away from the Christmas projects that were piled up in front of me.

It finally broke me down, though, and I set up the card table. I broke out the hodge podge computer tools I've collected over the years of amateur DIY computer repairs. Cord disconnected. Battery removed. I'm committed. Or maybe I should be. Anyway, I did it.

The old hard drive is out. Its replacement is in. Now the work begins.

I get to sort through all the programs I had installed on the old drive and reinstall them on the new one. Yippee for me. I have to track down registration and activation codes and passwords and hope they'll work one more time. How often did I really use that program? Is it worth putting it back on and using up space and memory? Please don't let me lose all my photos!!

Here I am now. The most used programs are up and running. My photos are safe again. And here I sit staring at my laptop, wishing I could do this with my life. I don't care about a total hard drive replacement but could I at least reformat? Maybe not even all the partitions but the major ones. Maybe I'd choose different programs to install - realizing a lot of what used up my time and attention was really not worth wasting space on anymore. I could be more selective. I've gotten more perspective since the initial installations and understand more what's important and what's not and what could be done different. Hopefully I've upgraded along the way but sometimes I wonder if I've really kept up. I should invent a diagnostic tool to run on myself and determine {objectively, of course} where my weak areas are and if there is any "imminent failure" hovering about. I shudder to think this train of thought might be somewhat parallel to New Year's Resolutions. I do so hate that whole ritual. But maybe if I think of myself as reformatting {sounds more long-lasting, long-term than that 'other' thing}, I might be able to make some progress.

"When we are interested, we will do whatever is convenient. When we are committed, we will do whatever it takes." --John Assaraf

I guess I need to decide if I'm as committed to my own reformat as I was to that of my laptop. Whether I'm as addicted to perfecting my own life as much as I was to perfecting my laptop. Hmmm.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Like Father, Like Son

I had to smile.

Weighing his options...paint or demolish?

The last time I went shopping with Hunter, he picked out some wooden vehicles to paint. One {or two, he couldn't decide} for him to paint and a couple for other kids to paint when they came to Gramma J's house and wanted to paint. Well, Hunter was psychic because today Layne wanted to paint. There were two vehicles so Tyler decided to join Layne in the painting project. That is until . . .

Tyler saw the broken iron on the cupboard.

"What's wrong with your iron?"

"It quit working."

"Oh." ...........long pause............ "Um. Instead of painting, could I take it apart?"

"You're just like your father! And, yes, of course you can!"

That's why I had to smile.

So this is how the day ended up.

Layne painted and proudly ended up with two colorful vehicles.

And Tyler Nathan Junior unscrewed and pried and cut and broke and threw and growled and sweat and proudly ended up with a bag of parts to take home.

Something More to Ponder On

I've watched a couple of movies lately that have now been added to my "Must Have" list. I'm still thinking about exactly what they were saying and how I want to absorb what they were trying to say.

One of them was the "Adjustment Bureau" and the other was "Life, or Something Like It". They both ended up having a lot of common threads running through them and I thought it was odd that I ended up with both of them in the order I did. Even that went along with some of the concepts and thoughts that were portrayed. Examples of other ideas about things happening for a reason and the choices we have to control our destiny and how much impact little changes can have in the long run also have left me thinking. Why do I love symbolism and parallels so much? I guess when I can compare an abstract concept to something familiar, it's easier for me to grasp and deal with. Just me and my mind trying to get along.

The "Adjustment Bureau" has a group of men {with hats} who make "adjustments" when people make choices that veer them off the 'big plan'. Originally they try to keep their "adjustments" simple enough to keep the number of ripples down to a minimum. Not only did it reinforce my belief that everything happens for a reason, it also made me realize again that there is no such thing as a little, insignificant choice. There is a ripple effect to everything. What is even funnier is that we learned about choices and consequences in Primary yesterday.

"Life, or Something Like It" reinforced the idea that I really don't like Angelina Jolie but I overlooked that as much as possible. A street preacher prophesies her imminent death in a few days and, after a few of his minor prophesies come true, she begins to believe she really is going to die. With the help of a one of those 'too-good-to-be-true' friends she tries to redirect her priorities in life but just doesn't go deep enough with the changes she makes. She does try, though. And I think her efforts still make an impact on the outcome. I just like the idea of second chances. Kind of like "Premonition", too.

And so, sort of on that same note, the hard drive on my laptop has been prophesying an "imminent failure" for close to two months now. I believed it enough to purchase another hard drive {I'd have preferred a whole new laptop} but have procrastinated the actual replacing of the drive {something to do with eleven pairs of pjs, doll clothes and tents}, hoping against hope that the warning screens were just a fluke. I'm hoping all the important stuff of my life is saved, backed up and protected from disappearance so I can just step right back into all this without losing important little snippets of my life....or something like it.