Saturday, January 31, 2015

A Good Life Is (Generally) Not Good TV

Lately I've found myself thinking about the shows that I let entertain me, and how the character qualities I see in the characters are not necessarily character qualities I want to develop in myself.

Then, the more I examined this issue, the more I realized, that, in general, qualities that make up a good and Godly life are not found in "good" tv.

Apparently "good" tv -- as in, the type of television that is renewed season after season, contains story lines of anger, resentment, lies, holding grudges, loud arguments, hurtful words... very dramatic interactions.  While apparently our world (and myself included, unfortunately) finds this entertaining, these are not behaviors the Bible recommends, and not behaviors that lead to a joyful and full life.

It first hit me a few weeks ago when I was watching re-runs of Gilmore Girls.  Luke throws April a birthday party and April's mother is livid because the details were not cleared with her first.  April's mother shows up at Luke's diner... takes him away from his work in order to bark a few sentences at him, only to then say she is too angry to look at him, and storm off.  How old are these characters?  They are behaving like twelve year olds -- and probably twelve year olds who have been watching too much tv.

Having been married now for over three years, and learned a few things in that time about positive ways for my husband and me to communicate, I couldn't believe how un-realistic and un-productive this scene was.  There was no phone call to set up a time to talk, there was no time and thought put into exactly what the mother wanted to say and how she wanted to ensure a different situation in the future... and they she storms off without any productive interaction with the father of her child.

I had never watched his scene through these critical eyes before... but all of a sudden I realized how this dramatic scene, might make for entertaining television, but it certainly does not make for a full and happy life.

Now, ironically, right after I wrote this post, I read a facebook link that was celebrating the fact that the movie CLUELESS is turning 20 years old (yeah, crazy).  The website was accounting different aspects of the movie and why America loved it so much.  The last point mentioned alluded to the big, climatic arguement between Tai and Cher... and how it was so mature and relate-able to audiences.
Tai: "You're a virgin who can't drive."
Cher: "That was way harsh, Tai."
Tai: "Look, I'm sorry, all right.  Let's just talk when we've mellowed.  I'm outie."

Sure words got a little heated, but the climatic argument doesn't end with screaming, yelling, and storming off... it actually portrays what might be a normal argument in a normal, healthy, loving American home.  Sure, one comment was made below the belt... and it was acknowledged... and then they walked away and gave each other space only to come back a few days later, both apologizing and ready to make amends.

Now that is good tv... and a great lesson from which many people (and other television characters) could learn.

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Friday, January 30, 2015

Non-Pregnant Appreciation

About a year ago, I did not spend my final month of pregnancy belaboring how miserable it was to be in my final month of pregnancy.  I suppose I didn't have a complicated or unbearable pregnancy, but I also had every intention of having a great attitude, a grateful, appreciative attitude for my entire term.

Although it was tempting, I did not spend my final months of pregnancy thinking about how much I wanted to sleep on my back, or how many times I had to run to the restroom because my bladder was small, or how much heartburn I had.  I knew pregnancy was temporary, and so I focused on how much joy I felt when I felt my baby move inside me.  I focused on how my baby got to come to work with me every day, and never cried.  I focused on how safe, and warm, and protected my baby was every second she was in my belly.

I focused so much on my gratitude at being pregnant, that a part of me was worried that I would suffer some postpartum depression because my baby suddenly was not inside me anymore, but thankfully, (Praise God), at least with Tracey Ann, I never suffered any major postpartum depression issues.

All of that being said, within hours of Tracey Ann being born, I was able to switch my mindset to a grateful, appreciative attitude that I was no longer pregnant.

That first night in the hospital, just a few hours after Tracey Ann was born, I will never forget the AMAZING feeling of being able to lay back ON MY BACK.  I don't even sleep on my back, but the comfort of laying back after months of laying on one side or the other was such sweet relief.

In addition, after Tracey Ann's birth the heart burn ceased immediately, and I instantly had more room in my bladder.

An entire year later, I do hope to eventually be pregnant with more children... but I still cherish those sweet simple pleasures of not being pregnant.  I will never take laying on my back, or my stomach for granted.  I cherish the ability to do so, because come the second trimester of other pregnancies, the pleasure will have to be deferred.

I am not always the best at treasuring what is right in front of me... but with pregnancy, I really did cherish the pregnancy while I was pregnant... and the lack of pregnancy when I wasn't.  There really are beautiful parts of both.

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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Currently...

Currently...
 
Loving:  Sleep.  I know, I also love my Hubby (A LOT), and our healthy, cheerful, giggly, fast-paced one-year-old... but after our whirlwind trip to St. Louis and Nashville... I'm loving sleep.

Reading/Watching:  I'm trying to read 1000 Gifts... but I have to be honest, that I'm struggling to get into it.

Trying to:  Stay awake with a joyful attitude... instead of a grouchy attitude.

Wishing:  For a few minutes to unpack from our trip.

Excited for:  The University of Michigan season opener College football game against Utah in Salt Lake City... which Hubby, Tracey Ann and I are going to attend in September.  I know, it's a ways away... but I am REALLY excited about it.
 
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Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Flashback: Rome Update 2

Flashback: Rome Update 2

September 9, 2004

Hello again -

Thank you to so many of you who have written me such encouraging and
sweet emails this past week.  Every day gets a little easier and I
haven't gotten lost since last Thursday :)

This past weekend I went on two walking tours offered by the school.
One was of Rome's Fountains and Squares (Piazzas) and the second was of
Ancient Rome.  They were extremely interesting and now I'm chomping at
the bit for someone to visit me so I can share all this interesting
knowledge.  While I was on the first tour, I picked up a flyer for an
  amateuropera group and discovered they were performing LA TRAVIATA by
Verdi that night.  I was ECSTATIC as I really enjoyed studying this
opera last year.  So Saturday afternoon was spent with two new friends
buying tickets, shopping for new dress shoes and getting all gussied up
for the opera.  It was very good and I picked up flyers for the rest of
their season as well.

I went grocery shopping last night, and cooked for my first time on a
gas stove (and I didn't explode anything).  My apartment still does not
have hot water although the school has sent people to work on it twice.
My roomies and I are bonding over the experience.

I hope all of you are doing well, and I plan to respond to many of the
individual emails a number of you have sent me sometime this week (as I
plan it to be less eventful than last).

Ciao!



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Monday, January 26, 2015

Jeong Wedding

On Saturday, after a great birthday party for Tracey Ann in St. Louis on Friday night, Hubby, Tracey Ann, Hubby's parents and myself all drove to Nashville for the wedding of a dear friend of mine from college, who was an usher in our wedding.

Jack and Lindsey had a beautiful wedding and we were so honored to be a part of it.  We were also so blessed that Chris' parents were willing to baby-sit Tracey Ann for us during the wedding and reception so that we could enjoy the adult celebration.

Congrats and Best Wishes Jack and Lindsey.

So happy

Friends from W&L read scripture

Now their the Jeongs

Jack's parents and brother

First dance
 
So happy for them... hopefully they'll come see us in Colorado

We had a blast, a night out just the two of us


Photobooth fun

And with friends from college

The Washington and Lee Alumni picture - For W&L I YELL!

Outside ready for their exit

And they're off

Breakfast the next morning with good friends from college who were in from Texas

 What a great time!
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Sunday, January 25, 2015

The Birthday Cake

Chris' family insisted that Tracey Ann have the experience of smashing a cupcake -- a HUGE cupcake at her first birthday party.














It's all fun and games until a one year old hits sugar overload.


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