Sunday, March 31, 2013

He Is Risen!

This is actually a hard post for me to admit, but over 10 years ago I was going to college and in one of my History classes the teacher found out that I am a Mormon.  She seemed fascinated that she had a Mormon student and questioned me whenever she could.  She would make a point in her lecture, then stop, look around the room and say, "Where's my Mormon student?" before asking me a question.
One day she asked me a question that I knew the answer to, but she answered her own question before letting me respond and in a different way that I would have. So I was shocked by being put on the spot and the answer that she gave threw me off that I never got to give my answer and it still haunts me today thinking about my missed opportunity.  The question she asked was, "Why don't Mormons use the cross in their worship?".  I took poise to answer her right before she went into her own answer that some missionaries had shared with her.  Apparently this young man told her that it's like idolizing how Christ died, like if your mom was shot and killed you wouldn't have a picture of her and a gun.  I was so taken back by this answer, and she didn't give me the opportunity to contradict her, that I sat there as the lesson progressed not saying anything. I still feel like I lost the chance to not only change her thought, but now everyone in the classroom thinks this is the reason.  Well I may be over 10 years late, but I think Easter is a good time to set the record straight.

When Christ died for us that was just a piece of his wonderful gift to us.  He lived his life as the perfect example, he walked on water, he healed the sick and raised the dead!  He bled from every pore at the Garden of Gethsemane, each drop of blood representing our sins.  And then three days after he died he rose from the tomb, He lives again!  We worship the Living Christ, He is our Savior because he lives!  His dying was a part of the big picture and because of that we focus on ALL of Him...Life-Death-Resurrection.

If I could go back in time, this is what I would change my answer to.  I would have stopped the class just so I could clarify what we believe and the real reason we don't have the cross.  The cross represents His death, but He lives and that is why we don't use it. I understand why religions use this to symbolize Jesus Christ, this is my explanation as to why we don't, not because we don't worship Jesus, but because we embrace everything about Him.  He lives!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Winter Wonderland

 This isn't what it looks like right now, but this wasn't too long ago.  This is what has confined me to the hamster wheel in my basement.  It sure was cool when it first fell, especially when the snow covered everything, but after the novelty wore off...and the slush, we are all done with the cold weather.  There is supposed to be snow tonight, in fact we've already seen a few flurries, but I doubt it will be as thick as it was this day.  But you do have to admit, it sure is purdy!

A look at the backyard, I half expected to see a deer peeking through the trees.  Can't you just imagine a little Bambi action in those woods! So picturesque! The snow has been nice and a neat experience for the kids so I try not to complain too much in front of them.  They've wanted to live near snow for a long time, even though I'm getting the summer itch I try to enjoy this moment with my kids.  There's trade offs for everything in life.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Post Run Blues

I've been in a real funk lately and I realized that now my Half Marathon is over I'm feeling like something a drift at sea.  Like, okay that's what?  I know I should just sign up for more races to keep me going, but I'm feeling like I need some downtime and also I'm discovering what it means to be a 'seasonal runner'.  I've heard the expression, but I've never lived anywhere with REAL seasons.  Here in Jersey though it's been cold and even snowing! I can't take my girls out in the stroller in this weather and I'm afraid to go alone because of the ice on the roads.  I could slip and bust my head open! I've been inside the majority of us being home from our trip to Florida, and I think I'm getting a little case of cabin fever.  But for some reason or another I feel like my soul is starting to stir and I'm ready to stretch! I had a powerful urge to get on my blog and start writing!  I've been wanting to write about our trip ever since we got back, but I just couldn't muster up the energy to do it.  Just thinking about all the pictures I have to go through made me want to take a nap!  But I'm ready now, so get ready for a plethora of pictures!

We started our vacation at Universal Studios.  I was really nervous about wearing my legs out with all the walking around, but we planned the day before the race as a rest day.  It was super fun, but next time I'm going to insist that we plan the theme parks for AFTER the race.  I was so stressed the whole time, and during the run I did get tired sooner than usual, but I managed to dig deep and sprint the last mile to the finish, so I guess I wasn't too bad off.

Spongebob was a MUST on our list of things to do.  Charlotte absolutely loves Spongebob!  Her first words were Mama, Dada and Spongebob..I kid you not!

 This was Theo's MUST see, Ha! He loves the Simpson!  In fact his first words were Mama, Dada and DOH! Just kidding, but pretty darn close!  I teased him that when this show came out he could relate to Bart, getting into trouble just being a rebellious boy, but now that he is grown and a father he's more sympathetic to Homer!  Hahaha!  How life changes!
 Now that's a big fish...
 We also got to meet the Grinch...
 and the Cat in the Hat.  We had just gone on a fish ride reminiscent of the Dumbo ride at Disney World, but this ride the fish spit water at you, so that's why I look like a drowned cat!
 This was my MUST see!  I couldn't wait to get to Harry Potter World, and it didn't disappoint.  Unfortunately it didn't disappoint the thousands of other people trying to pack themselves in there!
 It was a frigid 81 degrees, hence the snow capped stores....*cough* sarcasm *cough*.  It was flipping hot! I wish the snow was for real.

 I finally got my Butterbeer!  We got it icy, and boy was it gooooooood!  It almost reminded me of Cream Soda with some kind of vanilla-y foam on top.  Dang it, my mouth just started watering...guess it's time to go back for some more Butterbeer! ;)
 Hogwarts, what an impressive castle and the ride was amazing!  We didn't get to do the ride the first day because the line was already over an hour wait.  The next day when we arrived we went straight to Harry Potter World and got in line with only a 20 minute wait. By the time we came out it was already over an hour wait again.  It was too bad because I wanted to do it again, but it will have to wait until the next visit.
 We got to met Super heroes! Captain America was awesome, he was HUGE! But super friendly!
 We posed with Spiderman, they had a superficial backdrop which is why we are in the green.  The kids couldn't seem to get which camera to look at for some reason, this is the best pose out of 3.
 Finally to the race!  This is my corral coming up to the starting line, the blinding lights is the actual start.  There were tens of thousands of people there, it was crazy! But of course Disney made it great!
Here I am posing in front of the castle about to go through.  My time wasn't the best I'd done, like I said before we did a lot of walking so I was very conservative with my running.  But I know I could have done better because seriously, the last mile I just took off!  I felt so good at the end, like I could have kept going.  I've never felt that way after a Half.  Now I'm looking into doing more and even branching out from just doing Disney, but I have really let myself go this past month and this weather is not helping out one bit.  Come on warm weather!!!