Friday, January 18, 2013

The Rut

I am in one.
A rut.
What kind of a word is "rut" anyway?
It rhymes with "butt" and I usually deal with my ruts by sitting on my butt and wondering why I'm stuck in a rut.
(If I weren't so stinkin' lazy, what a poet I might be!)

I'm not lazy, but I'm kind of stuck.
FINE..... I am a little bit lazy.
Monday I think I was a raving lunatic.
I'd read after I had been talked back from the edge of the cliff that it was "the most depressing day of the year" according to some study some scientist did that some random expert put on the internet.

That made me feel better in the same way that reading your horoscope gives you hope. You know it's hogwash, but you'll take whatever boost you can get.

Later I read that it's actually next Monday, so all of us who used the "Blue Monday" excuse this week just need to adjust our meds or stop thinking that eating Cheet-os and watching Ink Masters on Netflix all day will make everything better.
Blue Monday was an awesome song, wasn't it?
How is New Order and old person band? 

How are they not still edgy and awesome, just like all of the bands I still love.

Matt said Erasure released an album in 2011 and that they have been recording all these years, they just are terrible now.

  My brain exploded when I learned that, I knew it was going downhill when they covered all of those Abba songs, bit I had no idea they were still giving it the old 90's alternative effort. I wonder if Andy still wears a tu tu while he performs....

(Angel wings and bell bottoms. Thank you Google Search.)

Blue Monday and ADHD Friday.....
So, that's why my blog has been a dud lately. There is some post Christmas let down, a large workload to get things on the right track for the new year in Primary, and it's cold outside so every joint in my body hurts.

I am, however, getting a lot done for Primary and I had a great Sharing time this week.

I did two different activities, one for Junior and one for Senior.

For the Junior Primary, I had a bunch of these that I removed the color from and printed up, 4 to a sheet:

I read a story that talked about God's plan for his children and every line had the word 'happy' in it somewhere. Their job was to raise up their paper and whisper as loud as they could "happy" when  I said "happy."

It was adorable, and they had a blast. They whispered nice and loud but did not shout, which was what I was going for in the loud whisper. About halfway through they could tell by the look on my face when the next word would be "happy" and I stopped saying it, they would say it instead.

Tessa Z. was in the front row with Julia T. and they both got really into it. It was the cutest thing I'd ever seen. They started to do jazz hands whenever it was time to say "happy."

After the story ended, they colored the papers to use up the rest of the time.

Fun, reverent and hopefully, I got the doctrine shared:
Happiness is a choice and I want the kids to know that no matter what they do or life brings them- they can choose happiness. No matter how many mistakes a person makes in life, they still deserve to be happy.
Senior Primary had it's own activity because coloring sheets just isn't going to cut it.
For the bigger kids, I worked really hard on the activity we'd do. I think I got the idea from something similar I saw on Pinterest. 

 I printed up the story from the lesson, cut it in strips and put the strips in plastic Easter eggs, making sure they stayed in order. One by one I wrapped the eggs in layers and layers of Saran Wrap- in order.  When I was done, I had a ball of plastic wrap about the size of a soccer ball.

I didn't take a picture of it by itself, but it's here in this picture:

We talked about the Lord's plan and how the goal is to be happy. We follow his plan because he has promised us that if we do, we will be happy forever. 

I called up the kids one by one to help follow 'the plan' and they'd unwrap a section of the plastic wrap until they got to the next egg. The way it ended up working was that I'd hold the ball and they pulled on the plastic and the next egg would go flying out and crash open onto the floor.

The kids loved that and would get excited trying to guess what color was coming next. 

The person would then read the words, the next part of the plan.
The last egg said "Congratulations on following the plan. You have earned a great reward that will  make you happy. Please go and collect your treasure from under the piano bench." and that child walked over and under the piano bench, I had a box with treats inside for everyone. I told them they could come get their treat after Sharing time was all over.
We talked about better or faster ways to get to the treasure as we did the activity, some kids suggested we just rip it all apart and I told them that if we did that, the order of the clues would get mixed up and we might not be able to get the treasure. Another child , Isaac H suggested we just get a chainsaw and cut the ball in half- again, what if we miss the clues to the treasure? We all agreed that the best way to ensure we got the treasure that we all wanted was to just follow the plan and unwrap the ball layer by layer.
There were plastic eggs everywhere and Saran Wrap, which the kids thought was awesome.
I was happy that the point was made that there are many ways we can choose to find happiness, and that God has a way he designed as well that he has promised us will lead to happiness. We can choose whatever way we want, but this is one way where the results are promised.
I was also happy that it was fun and didn't get out of control. We were able to laugh, all of the kids were engaged and we actually did the activity.
No insecure post Primary apologies from Sister O.
In spite of my rut, life continues for me and my family.
 I am learning so much.
I never thought I'd ever be even okay in Primary, let alone happy there, but oh, what a joy it is. What amazing kids we have and what incredible teachers we have. I am so amazed by everyone and I know that the Primary program is inspired by God. What a positive and loving environment it is for our children and it is healing some things in my soul as well.
I have been feeling so old lately.

Turning 40 knocked me on my butt emotionally.
 I am super aware of the fact that music I still think is cool, is a quarter of a century old and I am that old lady who will still hear it and think I am edgy and awesome for listening to it. My clothing takes into consideration gravity more than trend setting and I have to use the hand rails when I go up and down the stairs in my sexy high heels that I need to stop wearing because I am too old. I keep mini packets of Kleenex and old lady hard candy in my purse because I need them. I own a pill splitter and I use it. I get excited by needlework patterns and sales on Ovaltine. I don't drive after dark unless I absolutely have to because even with my glasses, I can't really see. I am relieved that most of the local roads have a speed limit of 35, there's no reason to ever drive faster than that ya bunch of speed freaks.....

Eh, I feel OLD.
I do not feel "fabulous forty."

(Nothing like a bathroom self-portrait to make you feel  young and hip... Is 'hip' still a thing?)
 Primary is actually helping with that. It is giving me a purpose an a reason to stay a part of the world outside of the little nest I knitted for myself. I am aware that when I choose to focus on how old I feel- everything in my soul creaks and aches. When I choose to focus on LIFE- somehow the world is all new and fresh. Life feels better.
And Depeche Mode is still cool in both of those worlds, no matter what you say.
 PS--We're thinking of you today, Dad Olson.
I am sorry that you are old, too.
We love you very, very much. Heal quickly.


  1. Well, you look fabulous, even if you don't feel it :) I turn 30 next month and I am freaking out. Ugh.

  2. What a cool idea for primary. I sneak into primary while I'm doing my ward librarian job and it is a fun place to be. I will have to share your ideas with them.

  3. Being old is better than the alternative! Dad and I frequently talk about what Matt's Grandpa Olson has missed because he's been gone 38 years... Part of that path to happiness is finding joy in the here and now. Sometimes, that's not so easy (and do I dare say "but it is worth it"?)

    Ooo, did you see the neat crochet patterns I posted in Pinterest? :)

  4. Chris, you are one awesome lady!!

    Lynnae, who is much, much older and just as hip as you! LOL!!

  5. Depeche Mode are indeed still awesome. They do not, however, look like that anymore.

    They look old.

  6. I think that you were called to New Jersey to be with and enrich the lives of these children. Sometimes the plan is not so obvious or apparent, but it always unfoldsthe way it is meant to be in the end. :)
    Looking forward to Sunday!