Tuesday, October 27, 2009

I am the Holy Grail

The Gospel Doctrine lesson this week is on temple and family history work. Since the Church has the fabulous New FamilySearch, I was using it to trace my family line. I had read earlier this week a teacher can't be a hypocrite (bad news for me!) so since I had asked two others in the class to do something in family history this week, I should too.
So, through one of my lines, I descend from the Birds in early Virginia (founders of Richmond). They descend from a long line of nobility going back all the way to Edward Longshanks (the bad king in "Braveheart"), William the Conqueror, and Charlemagne. Pretty awesome. Another ancestor clear back there is a descendant of the Merovingian kings in France. If you've seen "The Da Vinci Code," you may remember the Merovingian line was purported to be the descendants of Christ's daughter Sarah, who grew up in France and married Antenor, King of the West Franks, making the Merovingian kings descendants of the Son of God, and the Holy Blood line. It was an interesting story, but kind of weird.
So I keep hitting the little button to go further back in time and see who each person's father was. I come to Antenor, King of the West Franks, and his wife, Sarah-Damaris Bat Yeshuah. I think, "Man, that's a Jewish name if ever I heard one!" I go back to see her parents, and they are listed as "Jesus Christ, lineage of" and Mariame migdal eder. I think, "No way! They have Jesus on the New FamilySearch?" And they do. I click on His name, and look in the box below the pedigree for more information. I click the link for LDS ordinances.

It says they are not available.

And I laugh and laugh and laugh.

You can't make up stuff that good!

To summarize:
  1. New FamilySearch is fully awesome and user friendly
  2. I lucked out and am related to royalty so I can trace my family history WAY back.
  3. It appears I am a descendant of Jesus Christ.
  4. No one knows the date of His baptism or other priesthood ordinances.

Maybe I'm bad for thinking that's hysterical....but I bet He thinks its funny too.

UPDATE! I kept clicking back for ancestors of Antenor, and after going through Russia, Turkey, Troy, ancient Greece, and more, someone has decided that the first king of Troy was mothered by an Israelite, Judah's daughter-in-law whom he impregnated when she pretended to be a prostitute. Well, with a lineage like that, its easy to go back to, you guessed it, Adam. I have a family line that goes all the way back to Adam. I am that Mormon.

I realize these connections are spurious at best, but it's still interesting. Plus, kind of funny!

Monday, October 26, 2009


Rejoice with me, for I have a sparkly clean kitchen! Tomorrow--living room!

Look out piles of laundry! I'm coming for you!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

I hate mess...and my whole house is one.

The good news for you is, you can pretty much rest assured you are a better housekeeper than I.

My baby has been sick this week, so my whole house has been turned into the Disgusting Land of Puke and Ickiness. I am not a good housekeeper at the best of times, so when my dryer still isn't fixed and I'm on laundry overload and all my time is spent caring for a tiny, screaming person, home-making disaster ensues.

Instead of trying harder to work on my mess, I've been playing Bejeweled Blitz on Facebook. Inside, I hate myself for being too much of a coward and slacker to just go upstairs and face the mess. As I played my last round, I heard the deep, dramatic voice of the game tell me "Good," and "Excellent," and "Awesome," everytime I did a particularly neat move. It occurs to me I may get more done if that happened in my actual life--if everytime I got something done I had that voice giving me a little instant gratification.

How do I ever change into the kind of woman who always has her house together? How do I learn to not be so overwhelmed by the mess that I walk away from it? Why can't I see messes utnil they are GIANT and hard to overcome?

Any thoughts? Anyone?

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Eye of the Tiger? More Like Eye of the Bunny.

Jake played soccer this year on the city league, with the fabulous Gwen and Stephanie coaching. His team is the Roadrunners. This would imply some speed and swiftness, would it not? If you could see Jake, you'd have to agree it would not. Joe and I are both very competitive people. Whatever we do, we are in it to win it! We've learned to tone it down over the years, hoping to avoid alienating people who think competitive people are jerks. Plus, a few of my friends in high school got a lot of mileage out of my competitive nature, so as a self-preserving measure I keep the crazy to myself. Jake is not at all competitive. Some members of his team are running hard, trying to kick the ball, totally focused on the game. Jake tends to run in what appears to be a Baywatch slow-mo parody, occasionally looking over at Joe and me to give a big thumbs up. I'm not sure he knows the games are scored. I don't think he knows someone wins and someone looses. I don't think he even cares if he makes contact with the ball--ever. He sure is happy to just amble along the field. He loves to get out with his friends and wrestle on the sidelines and ask to be taken out of the game so he can go back to the demanding task of not running. Imagine Joe and I, yelling, "Jake, kick the ball! Run! Go the other way!" and Jake just bouncing along, giving us thumbs-up, while an opposing team member runs right past him with the ball. It's awesome.

I think he's had fun, and that's really all I wanted out of it. It just surprises me that two people who care about winning so much have managed to produce a child who couldn't care less.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Putting lightness in your life and a swagger in your step.

I posted on Facebook today the following status: "Emily Pugh Ward needs someone to inject her husband with sunshine and confidence. Lord, get right on that, if you will." The response I got was unexpected. Several people commented that they needed a boost of sunshine and confidence themselves, and others wrote personal messages indicating that they, too, were a little down in the dumps. For that reason, I have decided to share some happiness.

In 1Nephi 16, disaster strikes the family of Lehi. Out in the middle of nowhere, with no help in sight, Nephi breaks his bow. It seems the breaking of the bow was the last straw. Everyone else's bow had "lost its spring" and now Nephi's super-fancy bow was broken. Life was not worth living. Even Lehi started to complain. Lehi could put up with a lot--wayward kids, attempted fratricide, total loss of riches--but when he got hungry, the crankies came out a-blazin'. Amidst all this whining, Nephi never loses sight of some important absolutes:
  • God helps those who help themselves. Nephi went out and made a new bow.
  • Priesthood authority matters. Though Lehi was a murmurer too, Nephi respects his calling as the prophet and his position in the family as patriarch and defers to his authority.
  • The Lord wants us to succeed, and will help us to do so. Nephi receives instructions from the Lord via the Liahona on where to find animals to kill, and trusts that instruction, finding success and yummy food.

How can we apply this in our own lives as we seek sunshine and confidence?

  • Do all you can, and believe the Lord will make up the rest. Righteous living gives us the confidence to believe we have bound the Lord to bless us (D&C 82:10), knowing that we have kept the laws upon which blessings are predicated. (D&C 130:20-21)
  • Follow the prophet. Seek priesthood blessings. Access to Priesthood power is a sacred privilege enjoyed in mortality by a blessed few. Don't waste it! Go to the temple. Study conference. Counsel with your bishop.
  • If you truly believe the Lord loves you and wants to care for you, faith pushes away fear, and the knot in your stomach loosens as you allow your trust in the Lord to replace anxiety. He will take care of you! It's hard sometimes to go forward blindly, truly believing He knows what's best for us, even when its not what we would have chosen, but we can find peace and confidence to walk into the unknown knowing that we are not unknown to Him.

It is my firm belief that nothing is so dark that the light of the Atonement and the infinite love of our Savior can't brighten it. I sing with all my heart,

"We doubt not the Lord, nor His goodness,

We've proved Him in days that are past."

Always, always in my hour of need, the Lord has proven to me that He holds me in the palm of His hand. I have always been happier for following His counsel and submitting to my trials meekly, trusting that God has a plan for me, and that plan involves finding joy! I know He can help us, if we let Him.

Let the sunshine and confidence begin!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

If I could put time in a bottle...

I blog stalk a delightful woman who refers to herself as "That Girl," formerly of Brazil and recently relocated to Arizona. She brightens my day. She posted a blog today about her worth according to a nifty site, Salary.com. The site has a tool that helps you calculate your dollar worth based on hours spent at various tasks, such as Day Care Teacher, Cook, CEO, Interior Designer, Plumber, etc. "That Girl" tried to tell the site she served 45 hours a week, each, as a Day Care Center Teacher, Psychologist, Staff Nurse and CEO, but the site corrected her, albeit very sympathetically:

We understand if it sometimes feels longer, but a week can never have more than 168 hours. Please re-enter your hours.
It made me laugh, and then it made me think. A good friend of mine was diagnosed with Melanoma early this year, and while she came out of it ok, I couldn't help but confront my own mortality. The fact is, we each have a limited amount of hours in this life, and none of us now how many hours we really have. I think about all the times I've been annoyed when my kids want to be held while I'm doing something else, or when they want me to read Green Eggs and Ham for the 900th time, or when I grouse about household chores--and I wonder if my hours suddenly ran out, how much would I hate myself for resenting the privilege I have of being these beautiful spirits' mother? Will I regret hours wasted? Will I long for more hours to accomplish things I should have had plenty of time for? If my hours are precious, then I must decide what is most important in my life, and divide the hours I have accordingly. I repentantly acknowledge that I am not the best steward of the hours that have been allotted to me. I hope I can have perspective and grace to improve how I spend my hours, and be more grateful for the ones allotted me.