Praying For...Oakley, our darling 6-year-old beauty queen, who is also smart as a pin. With school in the autumn air, I pray that she is able to understand and follow the commandments specifically for children, Luke 2:52 and Colossians 3:20. I pray that she will know the joy of following Jesus' commandments and develop a deep love of learning. Also, that other darling, smart 6-year-olds in the world will get a chance to know Jesus and gain an education.
Pondering Jesus' Words...Over and over I think about 1 Corinthians 13. I try and try and fail and fail. I need Jesus' grace for this one.
Teaching Little Children...My class has swelled to eight. I love teaching. This week we talked more about the Sacrament and what it was. We talked about the last supper as an example that Jesus set for his believers. We played 'toss the bean bag and answer the teacher's question,' which they adore. We played a matching game that Spencer sent from my files at home. Eight years ago I put this together with miniature versions of paintings of Jesus in various poses with little children by Simon Dewey, Greg Olsen, and Del Parsons. We also colored a line drawing of Jesus' Last Supper. No dull moments were noted nor bored children present.
Bibliophilia...Read The House of Sixty Fathers, which I enjoyed a lot. Also, sent The ABCs of Yoga for Kids to Oakley, which I've begun using for my yoga practice. It makes me feel young again. I plan to incorporate it into tutoring.
Sound of Music...since I teach Primary, I get to learn and sing children's songs every Sunday. Serving with young women when it came out, I didn't learn Holding Hands Around the World until a couple weeks ago. Because of our extremely diverse primary, it makes me emotional. Nobody can tell me that the color of a child's skin has anything to do with their character; the condition of the spirit has everything to do with it. Also, this week I was alerted that my favorite piano chord method site was closed and acquired by a porn creep. Anyway...I scrambled and was reintroduced to an old favorite, Piano for Life and its companion Piano for Quitters. I love that it teaches improvisation through theory similar to our piano teacher in Hawaii, Ralph Hedges. We are having a blast going through these lessons.
Cucina Fresca...I love hominy but not with the amount of salt that comes in the canned variety. At the grocer, I found a package of dried pazole. So I invented Perfect Pantry Vegan Pazole. 1 c. dried hominy, 1/2 c. dried Lima beans, 1/4 t. Pickling lime, distilled water, 2 T. veg powder, 1 small onion, purreed, 1 clove garlic, pressed, 1 can fire roasted tomatoes with green chili, 1 roasted Hatch chili (optional, but oh so good), 1/2 c. dehydrated cabbage, 1/4 c. dehydrated spinach, pinch oregano, 1/4 t. smoked paprika, 2 t. chili molido powder. Soak corn with lime at least eight hours. Soak beans in a separate bowl at least eight hours. 6 hours befor dinner, drain, rinse, and put corn and beans in a crock pot. Cook on low, covered with distiller water until soft. Put in sauce pan with all other ingredients and more water if necessary. Simmer for 10-15 min. Serve garnished with more roasted chili, cilantro, and tomato.
Mission News...a small maintenance crew came this weekend to deep clean the dorms. Even though each group is pretty thorough to clean up after themselves, this group's whole project was cleaning. I' once again pleasantly surprised how well our young people complete assignments and are just nice people. Also, still praising God for sending me to this place to regain my health. What other place in the world is so free of traffic and crowds and noise and artificial lights and air pollution! My Heavenly Father loves me and minutely cares for my needs.
Needle News...ha...like nearly all the other equipment here, the old sewing machine was on its last leg. I finished 2.5 napkins before it gave up the ghost.
Nature News...I saw the first leaves fall. Trees are beginning their metamorphosis from green to gold and red. In a few more weeks, the beautiful warm weather will be a sweet memory. Faith and experience tell me they will return again.
Tutoring Tidbits...My distance students have mostly started up again after summer break, while some of them didn't take long breaks. Additionally, I'm offering in-person tutoring here this winter. Since the US is falling behind India, Singapore, Australia, China, Germany, and the like, I hope to counter some of the problems this is causing our nation with my tiny contribution. There are several factors that we can point to as catalysts in this tragedy. Children learn everything has to be 'fun' instead of work first then play. Television and video games take the place of music lessons and neighborhood play of old. Way too much emphasis is placed on sports at the expense of academics. Children struggle to read, since the powers that be choose to teach hieroglyphic look/say instead of alphabetic phonics. Children fall behind in math, because English confuses place value. Twelve should be presented as 1 ten 2 as in Asian countries. Because legible (or any) penmanship isn't taught, children never learn speed writing. Word processors are nice but not the answer. Print is tedious and fatiguing. Grammar is ignored. Composition suffers. Finally, many parents can't or won't enforce homework accountability. Sure wish we were all like Ben Carson's mother and took stewardship over the education of our own children. AND...she couldn't even read!!!
Pen and Brush...most of the inflammation from my poor dietary choices a couple weeks ago is gone. I was able to draw but not paint this week. Still don't have enough control. This was a belated birthday card for Tyson.