Friday, January 21, 2022

7 Quick Takes about Things That Are Actually Awesome, Jeff Goldblum, and Kindergarteners Talking Like Confucius

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


How did you name your babies? Apparently they're just pulling random letters out of the alphabet now. I saw this article in Parents magazine called "From Evabeth to Jaspin, Made-Up Baby Names Are on the Rise."

Some of them had a nice (or at least interesting) sound to them, but then I remembered these were names of actual children who would grow up to be adults and here was my face while reading it:

I'm willing to consider most things, but... I don't know about this.


When people ask me if I know how to sew, I never know what to say. I'm semi-competent with a sewing machine. I've made curtains for the windows (straight lines are easy and it's way cheaper than buying them.) I've even followed the odd YouTube tutorial for random things like lined Christmas stockings and Roman shades. 

But I lack the capacity for spatial reasoning that sewing clothes requires. 

It takes me a ridiculously long time to visualize how things will look when they're flipped inside-out. When I attempted my first pair of pajama pants last year, I had to ask my teenager a million questions and I still sewed the pockets on wrong the first time.

With that background in mind, I'd like to share that I tackled my biggest sewing challenge ever this week: I altered a dress.

The white dress I wear when I'm in my church's temple has always been about a size too big, and I decided after some unfruitful shopping to roll up my sleeves and do what my ancestors would have done and fixed the one I already had.

The finished product isn't perfect, but it fits and looks fine and that's pretty awesome. Not in the way we flippantly say "that's awesome" to everything, either. I mean that the fact that I took apart a dress, cut it up, and successfully sewed it back together better than before actually fills me with awe.


Speaking of dresses, apparently my 10-year-old figured out that her Baby Yoda plushie fits perfectly into her American Girl doll's party dresses.

Why do I feel like I already saw this in Gremlins 2 or something? 


I was telling my kids how there are basically an infinite number of ways to serve people, as long as you're creative about it.

For example, if you're an amateur photographer you can donate your time to an organization that does free hospital photo shoots for stillborn infants and their families. 

Or, when my 5-year-old had surgery as a baby, there was a harpist in the waiting room who was part of a volunteer group of musicians who played calming music in hospitals for people during a stressful time.

"So no matter what you're good at," I concluded, "you can somehow use it to help people,"

There was a pause and then my 15-year-old said in her best Jeff Goldblum voice, "Because talent, uh, finds a way."

Over the summer we introduced the kids to Jurassic Park and it must have made quite the impression on them because they adapt that line for everything now. ("Hold onto your butts" in a Samuel L. Jackson voice is a close second.)


We took the kids to play laser tag over the weekend (only one more Christmas experience gift to go!) and it was really fun, but I can tell I'm getting old. 

After stealthily sneaking around like an armed spy for two 6-minute games, my knees hurt for days afterward. They never show that part in the Mission: Impossible movies. 


I absolutely love our orthodontist, who probably loves our family right back because our 6 kids are financing her retirement.

But I digress.

My 13-year-old went in for his orthodontic consultation, and when she went to look at my son's teeth she diplomatically explained he has "a more complicated bite" than his sister (whose bite needed a lot of work itself). This can only mean one thing:



My 5-year-old was showing me his school papers from his backpack and I commented on how he must've spent a lot of time on a worksheet that had a ton of tiny little pictures on it.

He pointed to a few that he didn't color and said, "I didn't do all of them, but I didn't not do any of them."

I'm not sure what that means, but it sounds like I'm raising an ancient Chinese philosopher over here.

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me said...

Some of those made up names are just regular names. Cedar , Charleston? I think the author needs to do more research. Some of the others are just examples of a parent trying way too hard. Naming a kid is not about making a statement or being impressive. Poor babies.

Kimberly said...

Good job on the dress! There is great satisfaction in completing a task you sort of expect to catastrophically fail at.

I feel that way about the rusty garage lights I recently cleaned and repainted. When I finally finished and put everything away, I wanted to jump up and down and say, "Look! Look! I somehow managed to not mess up and make them look horrible!"

Ann-Marie said...

Way to go on the dress. It is a lovely feeling of accomplishment. I still have a dress tightened with safety pins that I need to sew.

Thanks for the reminder about finding ways to serve. And I love that your kids are quoting Jurassic Park!