Friday, January 31, 2020

7 Quick Takes about Fire and Ice, Mixing Up Your 20th Century Decades, and Intentionally Overdosing on Walnuts

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


Lately my 8-year-old has seemed like she needs some special attention, so when I picked her up from basketball I offered to take her to the library, just her and me.

She lobbied hard for ice cream, but the library won and I'm glad it did, because while we were there we happened to see a local winter festival going on.

The theme was fire and ice, and they had a big bonfire, food trucks, and a pop-up skating rink. We briefly wandered around and decided to come back later this afternoon with her little brothers, when she was wearing more than basketball shorts to keep her warm.

When we came back, there was a fire dancer there which made quite an impression on the boys.

We have 133 photos just like this one, because when I tried to take a picture my phone started taking burst shots and I didn't know how to stop it.

There was also an ice sculpture of two polar bears. It's hard to get a good picture of an ice sculpture, but you can see the tall one up top and my boys are petting the shorter one.

I'm actually not sure they were supposed to be touching this.

We don't have skates but the kids enjoyed sliding around on the ice rink in their boots, and a nice older lady (who I really want to be when I grow up) let all the kids take turns on the ice with her walker.


On Saturday, my oldest three kids went to a church activity with the teens from our entire stake, which is like 6 or 7 congregations combined. So there were at least 100 kids there.

They were learning about the scripture that is our youth theme for 2020, and then putting it into action with a service project.

This organization that builds and delivers bunk beds for kids in need set up shop in our gym and put them all to work with power tools. Presumably they were well-supervised, but I'm just guessing because I only came at the end to pick them up.

This is after all the kids had left, but my 5-year-old needed to go back in and visit the bathroom.

My daughter said they finished fifteen bunk beds, which is pretty good for 100 unskilled child laborers in three hours, I think.


Happened to see this in the drugstore and it was the equivalent of hearing your favorite song on the oldies station on the radio:

Thank you, CVS, for yet another reminder I'm becoming increasingly irrelevant.

These games were so cool when I was a kid. This is what you begged your parents for at Christmas and your birthday. And now they sell them next to the Snickers bars at the checkout for $14.99.

(By the way, that "retro" font is from the 70s and handheld video games are from the 90s, not that the current generation knows or maybe cares about the difference.)


One thing people are often surprised about when it comes to my church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is our missionary program.

Instead of just sending missionaries to convert the unchurched heathen in far-flung countries you can't pronounce, we have them everywhere. We send missionaries to Colorado, you guys.

We have missionaries in our area, and recently they gave us copies of the Book of Mormon at church and asked us to give them to someone we know. A friend mentioned how she used to highlight her favorite verses before handing them out, and I thought, "Hey! That's a great way to explain why I like the Book of Mormon and what I find compelling about it," so I decided to try it.

I'm not a religious scholar and I usually can't recite from memory the exact chapter and verse of scriptures I like, so I sat down with my personal marked-up copy of the scriptures and transferred over some of my favorites.

I did it with the intention of giving it to a friend, but I didn't anticipate how much I was going to get out of it. Sitting down and reading through every Book of Mormon verse I've found personally meaningful over the years, one after another, was a very powerful experience.

I guess the way not to take something for granted is to look at it differently. Thanks, missionaries.


Phillip and I were leaving on a date (!) last weekend, and as we walked out the door we left the 13-year-old in charge, saying, "You hold down the fort!"

The 11-year-old wisecracked, "While they're gone, the little kids are going to pull down the fort."

The 5-year-old, listening to them, was prompted to yell, "The little kids are going to pull down your pants!" and started giggling uncontrollably.

I didn't really know what to say about that except:

When we got home, everyone still had pants and things were fine, by the way. The 5-year-old is all talk.


My 3-year-old has been officially cleared of his walnut allergy!

He had no idea what this certificate was for, but it had pictures of Minions so he was all over it. (I saw Frozen II string cheese at the grocery store last week which I think capitalizes on the same idea.)

First they gave him one walnut and waited 15 minutes to see if that was okay, then he had two and we waited, and finally he had to eat a half cup of walnuts... and let me tell you, that is a lot of walnuts. I don't even think I could eat a half-cup of plain walnuts, and I'm significantly bigger.

Luckily, the novelty of eating walnuts for the first time in living memory was enough to make him eat it all, even though it took 20 minutes.


While we waited for our appointment, I passed the time by reading the excessive signage in the waiting room:

The pillar o' signs.

Looking at this reminded me of the sign posted at our local recycling center. It has the standard reminders about things that are not recyclable: no asphalt shingles, no unnumbered plastics, and so on.

Apparently people were still throwing in a lot of non-recyclable items, so a handwritten list appeared next to the sign that grew every week: "No picture frame glass!" "No plastic toys!" and then finally, it became so long it included the final item: "Read sign."

I was legitimately sad when they took that one down.

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AnneMarie said...

That winter festival looks awesome! What a cool event to stumble across. I think it's pretty fabulous that an old lady let your kids use her walker on the ice. She sounds like such a cool old lady :)

Rosalie said...

That sounds like the sign at our recycling place! I think they need a "read sign" sign, too. :)

Terra Heck said...

Our church also has missions in the US. Congrats to your kid on clearance from the allergy. That looks like a fun library event!