Monday, April 16, 2007


First of all, I am glad to be back in the swing of blogging. I enjoy posting when I feel it relevant or interesting, and I love everyone's participation. ( Amie, you're not invading my blog!) But, I am like a frightened turtle coming out of his shell- Don't make any BIG MOVEMENTS! (Seinfeld reference) I have not ventured out to regulary reading other's blogs yet. I'm getting there.

WARNING: this may be the longest post I've ever written,a nd given my history of endurance, should tell you something. It's more of an essay really. Continue at your own discretion.

Since my blogging hiatus, I have been asked to lead a weekly 'Scrap 'N Chat' for our ward. It sounded a little cheesy, but I've come to really enjoy it. Every Monday morning from about 9:30-12:30 anyone interested meets in the nursery so our kids can play and we work on our various projects. If I'm prepared, it's just enough time to do a layout, or work on my quilt, get cards done, etc. Michelle and Hannah have both joined me and it's a nice relaxing way to start my week.
Today was very small company. It was me, and two other girls from my ward. Both approximately my age, both with 2 small children. (One has a girl Bella's age, and a 1 Year Old. They are only a year and a day apart. Hells Bells.) They're nice enough, but we don't have much in common. As you will learn as you read on:

{ I had to begin surreptitiously taking notes because I knew I could never remember all this. I jotted down key words to share with you. I share it not as gossip, but as a discussion to open-}

Somehow we began discussing our children's sleep habits which I know can be a touchy subject if you do not have a good sleeper. One of them said that she lays down with her boys, or nurses her 18-month old every night until they fall asleep. (Which can be up to 45 minutes.) The other one's little girl sleeps on a mattress on the floor next to their bed, and their baby sleeps in the bed. { I know that many people extol the virtues of the family bed, yada yada yada- Don't be offended- I'm just not one of them.) The one with the two girls also said that when her nearly 2 year old was having trouble going to bed at night, they just kept her up until she was tired enough to fall asleep, which happened to be midnight! They both wondered how kids could fall asleep on their own, and I quietly offered Bella as an example. I told them she sleeps from about 7-7 every night, give or take, and take a 3 hour nap everyday. I just have a little routine with her, I put her to bed, and she falls asleep when she's ready. Ta-Da! Now I know that I have lucked out in that department, I know it's not always so easy, but I also don't think I would take the measures these women have so warmly embraced. When I mentioned the book BabyWise, they exchanged knowing conspiratorial glances and one replies, “That book is of Satan.”
Ooookay- I can see now what I am dealing with I thought. I don't subscribe to everything in the book, but it did help when Bella was ready to sleep through the night. (Without staying up until midnight, nursing her into unconsciousness, or me laying in her crib). Oh yeah, and they said that some General Authority said that you should never leave a child crying in a dark room alone. Apparently it's in a Handbook.
So, moving on.
Then we started talking about food. I mentioned that I was trying to convert to a Whole-Foods diet, avoiding flour and sugar, or the 'white stuff'. I thought this notion would be quite popular with these minimalist women, but woman A who told me the book was of Satan then told me that she thinks diets are wrong and they defy principles of the Gospel. They are spoken of as the ideas from “Conspiring hearts of Man.' "If everyone just followed the Word of Wisdom, there would be no need for dieting. "Hmm. So I asked her what about a Whole-Foods diet didn't jive with the W o W, and of course she didn't really have anything for that. It doesn't inspire us to eat refined sugars and factory foods to my knowledge. She says if they have it at the Cannery, then it's good enough for her. In principle, maybe so, but I certainly don't want to eat everything at the Cannery.
With regards to both of these subjects and knowledge in general, woman A told me that to avoid confusion she only reads the Scriptures. "I don't ever read any parenting books because then I have to sift through what is true and what isn't. If I just read the scriptures, I save myself a lot of time and just go directly to the source. "So, of course relying on the scriptures is a virtue we should seek to improve, but to essentially cast off all other sources of knowledge as unusable because they may contain some un-truths among the truth? She used examples besides parenting, including medicine-Why would you want to limit your learning so much? She basically alluded that any problem you have with food, parenting, or any other problem in life can be solely solved through the Scriptures and Prayer. Obviously I believe we should seek these sources first, but the Lord has given us a mind to use it, and others the same. There are a lot of people smarter and more talented than me in a lot of areas, and I'd like to think I'm smart enough to sift through it to find the knowledge that could be helpful. Whew.

Lessons Learned:
I love my daughter.
I love Free Agency.
I need to move from Utah.
For the most part, I love who I am.
I am most likely going to Hell.


Diana said...

Okay Jessie they are just crazy. Did you tell them that neither of us had to make our kids cry through the night they just fell a sleep on their own? Did you tell them that making your child falling asleep on their own is by far much better for them in the long run. Whatever a general authority said Baby Wise is of the devil! That is crap. I love baby wise a schedule is good... don't they know general authorities are strict about their daily schedules!!!!
I am so glad my kids sleep in so I don't have the habit to go to scrap and chat I would have gone off on these girls. Seriously my kids are happy little kids because they get sleep 7-9 every day. seriously they love their own rooms I think it makes them happy to have property that is their own.
Diets.. okay I've never dieted. But seriously eating healthy is one of the best things you can do for your body and your spriit. Both those girls are too overweight to have any opinion!
Man you know I've tried my hardest to like Michelle even when she corrects my testimony but this just makes me realize yeah all my feelings about her have been valid.
Remember there are cool mormons in Utah I live her, Robin, Michelle, Jill all our blogging friends.
There's crazy mormons every where just ask my sister who lives in Miami, yikes some of the stories she's told me. And my mission yes crazy mormons everywhere.

Diana said...

oh I forgot she just must love her children more than we do :)

Amie said...

I have much to say, as usual. I will come back, I can't let myself sit here now but just remember.... it isn't just Utah, there are FREAKS everywhere.

cjw said...

Wow what a stellar morning. ;) Well, if you're going to hell, then I guess the family will see you there! (you know, the whole reading Satan's books thing and letting kids cry). Good grief is all I have to say to that.

michelle said...

Ahem. Like Amie, I don't even know where to start. But I will say that there are crazy people everywhere, and these two definitely sound crazy! Yikes.

As you know, I have never had great luck in the sleep department, but not for a lack of trying! And I sure have read quite a few books on the subject.

Saying that a whole foods diet is contrary to the W of W in any way is absolute foolishness. If it's in the cannery it's ok? Um, yeah, IF I was starving.

Those two are lucky they have each other, crazy zealots. Not sorry I missed today!

TX Girl said...

yeah- basic nut cases. They are kidding right- you should ask for her to provide documentation of the "general authority that said you shouldn't..." Give me a FREAKING break. So instead you should roll over and smother your child in your sleep because you let them sleep with you (yeah.. with you on that one). These woman believe Steve Martin is Mormon.. don't they? I'm really kind of in shock. I lovved my Baby Wise tips and thought they were insightful and helped me put Lulu on a schedule. I at no time got the impression of the devil, red clothing, horns, or the numbers 666, but hey.. I'm probably going to Hell too.

I'm also a little shocked by the cannery comment. She was kidding right- if you ate some of those items solely you aren't 1. following the w of w and 2. you would be putting on some serious weight. It isn't really all that healthy for eating everyday.

She only reads the scriptures. Does this mean she disregards the prophet and the church magazines, because they aren't the scriptures? Seriously what a nut. I hope she never leaves her small narrow minded little world- she would never make it on the outside.

mom said...

Definitely too bad Michelle missed this one-two against two would have been good! I guess alone, I would have been speechless or....screaming! Right about now we need the twilight zone music!!
You might want to be prepared that there could be some similar young members in the back roads of NC!
Enter again....twilightzone music!
Goodnite, Bella!

Kim said...

I'm smurking as I reading! I'm just glad you can recognize those situations for what they are and poke fun afterwards!
It reminded me of my time at BYU where at least weekly, someone would inevitably write a letter to the editor of the Daily Universe to complain about the people who chose to "cut through the grass" (as opposed to using the sidewalks) or those students who chose not to stop for the national anthem each morning. It always seemed that those minute issues always turned into an agruement of God's Plan vs. Satan's Plan. It was always very amusing, especially for peoplelike me who were used to life outside the BYU bubble!

Beatrix Kiddo said...

HOLY HELL!!!!!!!!!!!!! My word! Seriously, just reading this raised my blood pressure. My blood is boiling. I am SO GLAD I no longer live in UT. Good grief.

Robin said...

Wow. Really not a whole lot more that I can say other than that.

Well, at least we'll have fun in Hell together! *thumbs up*

Tina said...

First of all it's good to have you back. Secondly, I am new at this mothering thing and I have found out that most of the things that I do are not commom (he slept in the bed with us until about a month and a half ago...he's 7 mos.)and we tend to fly by the seat of our pants. I do know that Landry is very healthy, alert and is a great baby. Those girls just sound crazy to me.

Do you think that they will be back next week?

Jinii said...

I just happened on your blog and I cannot believe that there are people that believe like that. I do not have children yet but you bet I will be getting them to be on a schedule and sleep in their own bed. Or at least try every possible idea to get them to do so. Just from reading this story I think you must live in Utah County. Not a bad place but I sure found a lot of people with strange religious ideas there. The church teaches us to seak knowledge and how does limiting yourself to only reading the scriptures doing that. I am sure if you asked any general authority they would think that was extreme.

Ashley said...

Okay, I just HAVE to comment on this one, it is such a doozy! First off though, I, too, am glad that you are blogging again. Jess, you are so articulate and funny and it is the only way that I feel like I can be close (in some way...) to you. Now on to the nut jobs! THIS EXACT mentality is the reason that I have remained far far away from Utah and all the family that I love for so long. I realize that these are few and far between, but it is just insanity that there are people, and young people, that have chosen to not think for themselves. These are just the kinds of people that are going to wake up one day (or not!) and realize that their lives are a shamble and no not how to function in the world. Pete and I have considered many times recently the idea of moving back to Utah to be near family now that we have one of our own and this just makes me extremely nervous! I know you can find these zealots everywhere and not just in the Mormon church, but it really does seem rampant particularly in Provo. Yikes!!! So I have this to say about that - GET OUT OF UTAH NOW! and Please don't leave (cause if I move back I want you to be there too)! (BTW, I am just learning now about your move :( (When and where exactly?)

Ashley said...

And another thing.... A whole foods diet IS the Word of Wisdom! (Ahem!!!)

collette said...

Hey Jessie - this is the first visit to your blog and wow! How many of the prophets extol the virtues of good books?? That is like saying to someone who broke their foot to pray and read the scriptures and the foot will heal without a doctor.

President Monson stated, "An essential part of our learning library will be good books.
Reading is one of the true pleasures of life. In our age of mass culture, when so much that we encounter is abridged, adapted, adulterated, shredded, and boiled down, it is mind-easing and mind-inspiring to sit down privately with a congenial book."

Not to diminish the value of the scriptures, but...

To comment on Provo/Utah County - I love living here and I rarely find people that spout off like this. I truly believe this is not the norm so don't pack your bags so soon! :)

annalisa said...

So your ward includes a polygamist compound? :) Sometimes when I tell people I have to get out of Utah I get blank stares back. Then I know I have to watch what I say.
Don't you think the fact that Bella eats and sleeps without issues is a testament to the system? My friends used to laugh at how nazi I was to get my daughter to sleep on time and only in her bed, but now at 7 with a story and good-night kiss she is out easily. OK, I never had to let her cry, but routines are good things. The Baby Whisperer is a good book too as are Healthy Sleep Habits Happy Children and Super Baby Food (the author is psycho, but like you said, you pull truth).
Speaking of diet, good for you for going to whole foods. The cannery is intended for food storage, as in it needs to last a long time, which means it can't be at it's best natural form. I hate cannery food, unless it's oats. Ever wonder why Mormons are so overweight who rely so heavily on processed foods like the cannery? My friends also laughed at the things I would feed my girl, but guess who loves sushi and escargot and not until she turned 5 started complaining about foods?
So I guess I'll see you in hell too. Or at the very least, hopefully some day out of Utah.

Jill said...

I love it that you took notes during this freaky conversation. I don't where these people come from, but like Amie said, it's not just Utah.

Alison said...

I can't even imagine encountering people who think that way... people who talk about Satan in everyday conversation tend to blow my mind. WOW.

dpw said...

Like Jill, I'm laughing that you inconspicuously took notes throughout the conversation. This was definitely worth reading through to the end! It truly leaves me speechless (and with a needed reminder that not ALL the weird Mormons are in my ward.

llamaly said...

I've taken notes on "interesting" conversations before. It makes for an excellent resource when so much weirdness and freakish behavior presents itself.

Beatrix Kiddo said...

I thought this kind of added to the fun.

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