Tuesday, August 30, 2011

First Day of Fall Semester Was...

Interesting to say the least. My first class on Monday's is Intro to Foods. Here we will learn how to create and read recipes. I think I will love this class and look forward to learning a ton. The teacher is so so. She's not the best lecturer I've had. When trying to explain water bonding (hydrogen bonding really) she kept referring to the way batteries attract and repel each other. Now I know she probably meant magnets. At least I hope she meant magnets.
Our big project for this class is creating a pot luck project. We had to pick a culture to pick a recipe from. I chose British Isles. Not sure what I'll be cooking yet. The British Isles is composed of several different groups. You have the British, Scottish, and Irish and so I guess I'll try to find a recipe that incorporates all three. Haggis anyone? Beef Tongue?
Then there is my marketing class. This teacher wants to take a class of 98-100 people and try to teach it like it was a class of 20. She had us break into groups of 6 to discuss value and quality of watches, cars, and laptops. It was kind of a madhouse, but I'm sure it will straighten out as soon as everyone gets used to her way of teaching.
Finally there was Intro to Physics. The teacher seems okay, he was kinda funny and laid back. My classmates are an eclectic mix. Most seemed normal then in walks a 200+ lb woman in a very small black dress. Everyone kinda cringed when she went to sit down, hoping that she would not bend over any. Later into the class a guy with a red faux hawk speaks up and wants to discuss alien conspiracy theories with the professor. He tries to get the professor involved in a discussion on whether or not our technology came from alien technology. Okay then. Then in walks the poster child for those before and after meth photos. She looks like she decided to take a pair of scissors and randomly wack off her hair. Oh and might as well do the shirt as well. She has very pale skin with make up on as an attempt to cover the big sores on her cheeks. Apparently she sliced her toe open on the way to class and had to clean it off in the bathroom and has a huge bunch of paper towels hanging from the front of her sandals. Interesting folks here.
So I'm fixing to go to my Tuesday classes wondering what today will bring.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Free Thinking

First, what is free thinking? According to Wikipedia Freethought is:" is a philosophical viewpoint that holds that opinions should be formed on the basis of science, logic, and reason, and should not be influenced by authority, tradition. or other dogmas. The cognitive application of freethought is known as 'freethinking,' and practitioners of freethought are known as 'freethinkers." Wikipedia also goes on to further say that Freethinkers don't accept ideas as truth with out proof.
Free thinking is also defined as:
adj.1.inclined to forms one's own opinions rather than depend upon authority, especially about social and religious issues; exhibiting boldness of speculation; skeptical of authority.
Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary, published 1913 by C. & G. Merriam Co.

The phrase "free thinking" makes me think of someone who is open minded. Willing to accept that others have their beliefs and, right or wrong, they are entitled to those beliefs. Religion is a mixed pot of opinions and people trying to put a reason to unreasonable events. Why do things, such as hurricanes, happen? Saying it's Gods' will, or someone angered some wind/storm god or someone angered Poseidon/Neptune, gives us humans a reason. Describing weather currents and seasonal changes/patterns barometer, etc, also gives us a reason. Yep, I believe science can be a religion all of it's own.
However, from what I've gathered during a brief internet search, free thinkers are actually really close minded. They seem to put Christians in the same though process as someone coughing on you or not washing their hands after using the bathroom. They're all about keeping religion out of schools, out of everything. Because it may be contagious and your prayer may infect me or my children and I don't want that happening. They are all about their right to not have religion and separation of church and state. They forget that everyone also has a right to have religion. If kids/families/people want to gather and pray before school/game/shopping at wal-mart then let them. No body says you have to pray as well, only thing required for you is to either quietly leave or stand there quietly, and respectfully let them have their moment.
What brought this subject up is my daughter. While we may not have the most religious family we are mostly Christians. I have a tendency to waiver and see nothing wrong with it. Faith is a personal thing and my path is my prerogative. Right now my path is leading me to church and the studying the bible. I'm not doing this because I think it's better then any other religion. I'm doing it because at this moment in my life it's what I need. Do I believe the bible is the begin and end all, nope. I see it as more of a history book and book of guidelines. Back to the subject, after church this morning I jumped on facebook and found my daughter had been put into a group made by some of her school friends called Free Thinking Youth of the Mid-South. The group description is as follows:
A group for critical thinkers. Free thinkers.A Kids group for kids by kids. Against creationism and other organized religions in science classes and schools. Kids for REAL separation of church and state. We want to be able to learn more about discoveries of evolution and other theories in school. We are tiered of leaving our education up to the "Wise" adults.
We are anti...intelligent design, creationism, etc.
We are pro... science

To put it in to perspective, this group is a bunch of 8th graders (13-14 years old) and I know it's an age where kids question everything. I just hate the scary thought that my daughter may be influenced into one kind of thinking. I also didn't know they were teaching creationism in science classes today. When I was in 8th grade we learned big bang theory, evolution and all that good stuff. I'm also confused, if not for adults then who would teach these children what they know. Who do they think writes the books, articles, curriculum. Now in church today part of the sermon was how wisdom and knowledge didn't always go together (actually it rarely does). Just because someone is older it doesn't make them wiser. I knew and know lots of adults who hold various degrees and would not call them wise in the least. I also know some very smart people who didn't finish high school.
I will not request that my daughter drop from this group. I do ask that she keeps an open mind and take everything with a grain of salt. I do think that her friends are just rebelling and I want her to keep me informed of everything in case the rebellion goes too far. I worry that she is a follower and will go along with her friends beliefs because she thinks they are her friends. I just hope she realizes she has a mind of her own and is not a sheep.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Church Shopping

I'm in the market for a church home. I'm looking for one that is open-minded. I would like for it to not be too big, I don't want to feel like I should leave a bread trail to find my way around. I also want one that's not so small that you might as well be sitting in someone's living room.

It should also have a youth group, ministry, service. If my children don't enjoy attending then I won't enjoy it either. It should be big on helping. I've been reading on denominations and you wouldn't believe on how many don't believe in doing good works. It's the mind frame that yea it's a good idea, but it doesn't matter how much good you do in life. I don't believe that people are inherently bad and will always be bad(sinners) until we die and no amount of good done in life will help you get into Heaven. So nope no talk like that for me. I think you get back what you put out. If you volunteer your time (not just money) to helping others and are a generally nice person then that's got to count. Reverse is the same, if your a greedy self-centered little prick then that counts as something as well. May not be the something you want but it tallies up.

I also want the church to have a choir and music. I grew up going to a Church of Christ, and while there was quite a bit of singing done in church it was all acappella . I would like to hear piano, or organ music accompanying it was well sometimes. It doesn't have to be a fully symphony of sound, just little bit something more. I'm not saying that acappella music isn't beautiful. I always thought the church I went to growing up sounded wonderful.

With these and a few other issues in mind, I attended a church service at a friends church this past Sunday. The first thing that caught me off guard was that my son's and I drove by at 20 till 10am and there wasn't a single car in the parking lot. I knew service was to start at 10am and so figured well maybe everyone is running late. So I circled the block and came back around. It was now 9:45 and still no one was there. I went ahead and parked and tried calling my friend to make sure I had the time right. Two vehicles pulled in as I was dialing, neither one my friend. She said she had to pick up someone and was running 5 minutes late.

So the boys and I get out and are greeted by a nice lady and enter the church. It is after 10am now and people are beginning to straggle in. The lady mentions that they kind of just float in, in the mornings. So the boys and I are introduced and introduce ourselves to members that are there and the preacher and his wife. We take our seats and wait for everything to begin.
This church is an independent baptist church and doesn't have a sunday school per say. They have what they call family church and Sunday's lesson was on John 3:16, John 14-21 and a bit from Numbers (the brass serpent). My son stood up and read from John 3:16 after the other kids had recited what they had memorized. I think he wanted a piece of candy, but still was rather proud of him having the confidence to do so. Then sometime near 11 the family church time was over and the preacher said in about 5 minutes he would begin the sermon. The kids went to another room to eat their candy. The adults stood and stretched their legs and visited. About 11:15 the preacher started the sermon. It was on John 3:16 as well as some excerpts from John III.
All in all it wasn't a bad time. The members were friendly and everyone was welcoming. However, I cannot say it's what I was looking for. I asked my sons before I mentioned my opinions for what they thought of it. My oldest said it was okay. My youngest asked if we could go somewhere else next Sunday. So, like me, they thought it was okay but not what they would like in a church. So next Sunday we are attending another friends church. This time it's a big First Baptist church. I'm not sure it will be what I'm looking for either, but I won't say no without giving it a try first.

Thank You

As I was checking Facebook this morning, one page that I have "liked" posted a status about saying thank you to that one person that has an affect on your day, week, year, life. I thought "What a good idea." However, I've got more then one person that deserves a thank you and so I'm going to share it here for them and the world to see.

First thank you goes out to my husband. He's my rock, my best friend, and much more. He's there to pick me up. He encourages me (pushes me when needed) to do my best at everything. He never criticizes me. Never tells me I'm not good enough. He will tell me when I can do better. He will also tell me when I've done good (I didn't get a lot of that growing up). Thank you Hubby, love you.

Next thank you is a group one. This one is for my children. They love me and it shows. Not so much in words, but in actions. We may argue and fight, but at the end of the day when they are giving me hugs and kisses good night I know. When they are sitting near me to see what I'm doing online, or near me while we watch a movie, I know. Their love motivates me to do more.

I want to thank my siblings. My brother for being my protector growing up. Back then it was us against the world and I always knew I could count on him when I needed him. My next youngest sister for the smiles. She has a great attitude and is rarely down. It's hard to not talk to her and walk way without a smile. My next sister for being strong. Life hasn't been easy for her and she takes it in mostly in stride and comes out on top. Plus, she gets to deal with our mom the most and so there's a big thank you for that. There's also a thank you going out to my baby sister. She's smart, funny, a good mom and wife. She's also nearly always available when I need someone to talk to. For anything from a funny thing the kids did to a frustrating rant, or just because I'm bored and feeling chatty. Thank you sis for being there.

I want to thank my friend for being so great. When I needed someone to sit in the e.r. with me when my daughter was having flank pains (we sat in the e.r. for like 12 or more hours and she didn't once complain or act like it was the inconvenience that it was). When I've needed last minute babysitter, a friend to talk to or just hang with. She's been there. Friends and family come first with her and it shows (most of her friends she treats as family and I love her for it). She's not a needy friend, if we go for a couple weeks without talking neither of us start thinking somethings wrong. We know each other is busy and will call or text the other to either update or just check in. It's nice having a friend and having no drama involved. Thank you.

I want to send a thank you out to my mother and father in law. My mother-in-law has done a wonderful job in raising my husband. She's supportive of all our ventures (it's the same with all her children) no matter if she agrees with them or not. My father-in-law has been great as well. He's been a big help when the kids were younger. He's watched them so Hubby and I could go out for a minute alone. He's gone to the store and brought back fruit when I was pregnant with our third child and had cravings for some. He's watched my older two when I had to take the same third child to the doctor because of a super high fever and a bit of lethargy (he had a bad case of tonsillitis). It took hours and when I got home my father-in-law was getting the other two ready to go with him to run some errands he had to do. He was a big help when my hubby was doing a lot of out-of-town jobs and couldn't be there. Thank you both for being great in-laws.

I also want to thank my sister and brothers-in-law. My Hubby loves his big crazy family. I can't help but care for them as well. They are a goofy, loving, loyal bunch. You mess with one you mess with them all. When one makes a bad decision the other's support them and encourage them to make a better one. They grumble about each other once and a while but see past each other's faults and love each other as a family should. My children couldn't have a better example on how a family should treat each other then my Hubby's family.

Okay, I know there are many more people that affect my life greatly that I should thank. My grandparents, my hubby's grandparents. Several aunts, uncles and cousins that have all been a positive influence in my life. One big thank you goes out to them. Also I have more friends that deserve a thank you and so they get one as well. I thank anyone and everyone, past, present and future, that helps me maintain my optimism. That helps me keep being a better person. I have my faults, I've made mistakes(big and small). I want to thank those in my life that look past the faults, forgive those mistakes and stay with me through it all.