Friday, April 8, 2022

7 Quick Takes about Phoning It In, When the Common Cold Never Ends, and Unlocking the Secrets of the Baby Human

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


When Phillip had a particularly stressful day, I suggested using one of his homemade birthday coupons from the kids. 

(If you've ever successfully used up a coupon book from your kids, please tell me your secrets, because Phillip's birthday was last November and these things are going to be around forever.)

Picking one from the 5-year-old entitling him to any commissioned artwork of his choice, Phillip asked him, "Can you draw me a picture of a nice beach so I can imagine going on vacation and being in the sunshine?"  

Translated, this says "I will draw a picture."

The 5-year-old nodded and ran out of the room, then ran back in about 30 seconds later with this:

Sooooo relaxing. I can practically hear the waves of the ocean.


General conference was last weekend, which I spent parked on the couch feeling like I was clearing my mind while simultaneously filling it with good things. There were so many valuable thoughts on living peacefully, taking advantage of the gifts of repentance and change, and sharing the joy of Jesus Christ.

My all-around favorite talk, however, was by Dieter F. Uchtdorf, an apostle of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that addressed the concept of balance. He said:
"If we want to find balance in life... then our commitment to Him and His gospel can't be casual or occasional... As we seek to purify our lives and look unto Christ in every thought, everything else begins to align.  Life no longer feels like a long list of separate efforts held in tenuous balance. Over time, it all becomes one work: the work of loving and serving God and [His] children."
If you have time, I definitely recommend listening to the full talk. (And if you do watch, the reason everyone starts laughing at 5:43 is that Elder Uchtdorf was a pilot in his early life and a running inside joke in our church is "How long can Elder Uchtdorf go without talking about planes?" The answer is, "Usually not more than 5 minutes." The man loves what he did.) 

And yes, our family did do Conference Snacks™ again this time. More on that in a post next week.


The other thing I've spent a lot of time doing this week is hacking up a lung. Most places have rescinded the masks mandates so the kids are bringing home 1,000 germs and I have caught all of them.

And because of the immunosuppressants I'm on for my discoid lupus, even simple colds don't go away. After two weeks of being sick, I finally just stopped taking them for a few days so I can recover. 

I'm very lucky that I can choose to do that (many people can't because their immunosuppressants are keeping their bodies from rejecting a transplanted organ) but still, I need to talk to my rheumatologist about other options. 

Immunosuppressants were fine when everyone was in a mask and 6 feet apart all the time, but now that the kids are all back to licking each other at school and there's no mask keeping their germy fingers out of their noses, I don't think it's going to work out in our petri dish of a house.


I came across this sweet video of the Bus Brothers. Their Instagram account's tagline is "Having a little fun, want to make memories with my lil bro before I leave for college!"

Brothers are so cute, and it's good to see it isn't just my boys who think punching, shoving, and low-key assaulting each other is a valid form of affection.


My teenager recently told me about Birds Aren't Real, a parody conspiracy theory that birds are actually government surveillance drones, so when I saw this game called Conspiracy Theory I thought it would fit right in with her sense of humor.

We didn't know any of the real-life conspiracy theories the game is based on, so it was a little hard to play, but we had fun scanning the QR codes on each card to learn more about each weird conspiracy theory and reading it out loud to each other.

Also, I don't mean to alarm anyone but as I type this there's a line of "birds" resting on the power lines on the street right outside my house. They're probably charging.


The YouTube algorithm decided I might like this series of clips called "The Baby Human Experiments," and it was right. Don't worry, it sounds twisted but it's not at all. I think it was done by NYU and appears to be part of a video made in the 80s. 

Why do I find this so fascinating? 

The other ones are just like this, trying to pinpoint how the minds of babies and toddlers work in different situations. 


My church doesn't formally observe Lent, but many individuals often choose to concentrate on Holy Week, the 8-day period before Easter starting with Palm Sunday.

I found this set of Holy Week printables (free, of course, which goes without saying if you know me at all) that I think I'm going to use with my kids and see how it pans out. What are you doing to make Easter special this year?

I look forward to hearing your ideas, both here and on Facebook. And if you're not sure what you'll do, maybe check out some of the suggestions on this list or this one. Happy Holy Week!

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