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Thursday, April 30, 2009

Dressing Under the Influence

My son, David, signed up for band class in seventh grade. When it came time for the first concert, his band teacher told the students the appropriate attire for this concert was “church clothes”. My son, who has never been shy, lets her know in no uncertain terms that his family does not attend church and that he is not in possession of any “church clothes”. The teacher’s response to this dilemma was to suggest that he go to the “DI” to purchase the proper outfit. My little Californian wondered ALOUD to his teacher, “What does drunk driving have to do with clothes for a band concert?” When I picked him up from school that day he told me he had a crazy band teacher and repeated the story. I didn't know what the “DI” was either, but I was fairly certain that his teacher wasn’t referring to anything alcohol related. I asked around and found out the “DI” was like goodwill. There I was feeling stupid again. I don’t think David’s teacher has ever recovered from the incident, and three years later although he remains in band, I am certain he isn’t one of her favorites.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

"And That's All I Have To Say About That." Forrest Gump

So when I take my ninth grade daughter to get registered for school we meet with the school counselor. He was a lovely man who was happy to help us get acquainted with her new school. While figuring out her schedule, he lists a class called “seminary”. “What is that?” we ask. He looked at us a bit confused, but kindly explained that this is religious instruction. WHAT…? AREN’T WE IN A PUBLIC SCHOOL?I didn’t say that aloud, but I was totally baffled. We weren't interested in this course and asked what else was available. Unfortunately, the answer was not much. It seemed almost everyone was taking this seminary course. Well, I have to admit, this REALLY bugs me. I mean, anyone who pulls up my child’s schedule (counselors, teachers, administrators etc.) will know immediately she is not LDS. Our religious affiliation is none of the school’s business! I have nothing against religious instruction, but I just can’t believe that it is factored into the public school day. This small incident made my daughter feel like an outsider from the very first day she set foot in her new school and that made me sad and mad!

And that’s all I have to say about that….

Monday, April 27, 2009

I'm starting to feel like the village idiot

If the last post confused you, it may be because you are as unaware as I was that the term “elder” means a returned male missionary usually around 21 years old. Speaking of missionary, I didn’t know that word either. Three weeks after our move, I was shopping in TJMaxx for a gift. I was checking out the men’s cashmere sweaters, when a woman I had never met asked me if I thought the sweater would be an appropriate gift for a missionary. I got a little nervous; I mean... how would I know? Don’t missionaries go to Africa and isn’t cashmere a bit warm for a tropical climate? Turns out she meant a Mormon missionary who can be sent anywhere in the world on a mission. When my husband got home that evening I recollected the incident and emphasized how stupid and uncomfortable it made me feel. He said I shouldn’t feel embarrassed at all, I just should have told her when she asked about a missionary that I didn’t care to comment on other people’s sex lives. My husband is very funny!!!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Toto, we are not in Kansas Anymore

My family arrived at SLC airport feeling excited, scared and worn out from emotional goodbyes. As we took in our new surroundings, my eleven year old son turned to me with a confused stare and simply stated, “MOM – There are only white people here.” He has always been an observant little fellow. We noted his comment and moved on. Heading down the escalator towards baggage claim we were bombarded by a large (I mean LARGE) blonde haired family waiting to welcome home their grandpa. They were holding an extremely long banner that read “Welcome Home Elder Jones”. Of course we were drawn to this homecoming as the whole family was brimming over with excitement. Down the escalator strides a handsome YOUNG man and the whole family starts screaming and crying and embracing him. It was heartwarming, but we wondered… where was grandpa? Oh well- weird- we spotted our luggage and started our new life in Utah.