Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Choice WAS Made

I grew up "pro-choice". I would have never had an abortion, but felt that agency was a part of life. I happened upon this talk tonight and it hit the nail right on the head. I had already changed my views on it, but it was something i would have to re-go-over in my head every once in a while to make sure i understood myself and agreed with my own view {its sometimes hard to un-teach yourself what you grew up being taught}. I think this also applies to same-sex marriage...

Taken from Weightier address given by Elder Dallin H Oaks {bold added to what stood out to me}
"But our war to secure agency was won. The test in this postwar mortal estate is not to secure choice but to use it—to choose good instead of evil so that we can achieve our eternal goals. In mortality, choice is a method, not a goal.
Of course, mortals must still resolve many questions concerning what restrictions or consequences should be placed upon choices. But those questions come under the heading of freedom, not agency. Many do not understand that important fact. We are responsible to use our agency in a world of choices. It will not do to pretend that our agency has been taken away when we are not free to exercise it without unwelcome consequences.
Because choice is a method, choices can be exercised either way on any matter, and our choices can serve any goal. Therefore, those who consider freedom of choice as a goal can easily slip into the position of trying to justify any choice that is made. “Choice” can even become a slogan to justify one particular choice. For example, today one who says “I am pro-choice” is clearly understood as opposing any legal restrictions upon a woman’s choice to abort a fetus.
More than 30 years ago, as a young law professor, I published one of the earliest articles on the legal consequences of abortion. Since that time I have been a knowledgeable observer of the national debate and the unfortunate Supreme Court decisions on the so-called “right to abortion.” I have been fascinated with how cleverly those who sought and now defend legalized abortion on demand have moved the issue away from a debate on the moral, ethical, and medical pros and cons of legal restrictions on abortion and focused the debate on the slogan or issue of choice. The slogan or sound bite “pro-choice” has had an almost magical effect in justifying abortion and in neutralizing opposition to it.
Pro-choice slogans have been particularly seductive to Latter-day Saints because we know that moral agency, which can be described as the power of choice, is a fundamental necessity in the gospel plan. All Latter-day Saints are pro-choice according to that theological definition. But being pro-choice on the need for moral agency does not end the matter for us. Choice is a method, not the ultimate goal. We are accountable for our choices, and only righteous choices will move us toward our eternal goals.
In this effort, Latter-day Saints follow the teachings of the prophets. On this subject our prophetic guidance is clear. The Lord commanded, “Thou shalt not … kill, nor do anything like unto it” (D&C 59:6). The Church opposes elective abortion for personal or social convenience. Our members are taught that, subject only to some very rare exceptions, they must not submit to, perform, encourage, pay for, or arrange for an abortion. That direction tells us what we need to do on the weightier matters of the law, the choices that will move us toward eternal life.
In today’s world we are not true to our teachings if we are merely pro-choice. We must stand up for the right choice. Those who persist in refusing to think beyond slogans and sound bites like pro-choice wander from the goals they pretend to espouse and wind up giving their support to results they might not support if those results were presented without disguise.
For example, consider the uses some have made of the possible exceptions to our firm teachings against abortion. Our leaders have taught that the only possible exceptions are when the pregnancy resulted from rape or incest, or when a competent physician has determined that the life or health of the mother is in serious jeopardy or that the fetus has severe defects that will not allow the baby to survive beyond birth. But even these exceptions do not justify abortion automatically. Because abortion is a most serious matter, we are counseled that it should be considered only after the persons responsible have consulted with their bishops and received divine confirmation through prayer.
Some Latter-day Saints say they deplore abortion, but they give these exceptional circumstances as a basis for their pro-choice position that the law should allow abortion on demand in all circumstances. Such persons should face the reality that the circumstances described in these three exceptions are extremely rare. For example, conception by incest or rape—the circumstance most commonly cited by those who use exceptions to argue for abortion on demand—is involved in only a tiny minority of abortions. More than 95 percent of the millions of abortions performed each year extinguish the life of a fetus conceived by consensual relations. Thus the effect in over 95 percent of abortions is not to vindicate choice but to avoid its consequences. 1 Using arguments of “choice” to try to justify altering the consequences of choice is a classic case of omitting what the Savior called “the weightier matters of the law.”
A prominent basis for the secular or philosophical arguments for abortion on demand is the argument that a woman should have control over her own body. Not long ago I received a letter from a thoughtful Latter-day Saint outside the United States who analyzed that argument in secular terms. Since his analysis reaches the same conclusion I have urged on religious grounds, I quote it here for the benefit of those most subject to persuasion on this basis:
“Every woman has, within the limits of nature, the right to choose what will or will not happen to her body. Every woman has, at the same time, the responsibility for the way she uses her body. If by her choice she behaves in such a way that a human fetus is conceived, she has not only the right to but also the responsibility for that fetus. If it is an unwanted pregnancy, she is not justified in ending it with the claim that it interferes with her right to choose. She herself chose what would happen to her body by risking pregnancy. She had her choice. If she has no better reason, her conscience should tell her that abortion would be a highly irresponsible choice...
....I conclude this discussion of choice with two more short points.
If we say we are anti-abortion in our personal life but pro-choice in public policy, we are saying that we will not use our influence to establish public policies that encourage righteous choices on matters God’s servants have defined as serious sins. I urge Latter-day Saints who have taken that position to ask themselves which other grievous sins should be decriminalized or smiled on by the law due to this theory that persons should not be hampered in their choices. Should we decriminalize or lighten the legal consequences of child abuse? of cruelty to animals? of pollution? of fraud? of fathers who choose to abandon their families for greater freedom or convenience?
Similarly, some reach the pro-choice position by saying we should not legislate morality. Those who take this position should realize that the law of crimes legislates nothing but morality. Should we repeal all laws with a moral basis so that our government will not punish any choices some persons consider immoral? Such an action would wipe out virtually all of the laws against crimes."

I particularly liked this line: "She herself chose what would happen to her body by risking pregnancy. She had her choice." her choice was sex. with every choice there is a consequence that you must face... In this life or in the next. wouldnt you rather face it in this life and not have to face it, plus the fact that you sinned again because you didnt want to face it, in the next?

If you made it all the way to here let me know and i'll give you a chocolate! :)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Dove- Pressure

ok so i found the one i saw, again...not smart enough to get it to my blog. if you go to Dove, you can see all their videos. but here is a link to the one i liked...[cp-documentid=8354359]/

the "onslaught" one sends the message home even more...and is more realistic...which means its not o-so-appropriate. i dont want my blog to be a place to find inappropriate, so i dint want to link to it directly. but its the world we live in today, and it is one of my biggest...frustrations with the world we live in. it drives me nuts. satan has such a grasp over our society, and how women are portrayed.


I saw a commercial on TV a bit ago that i LOVED by Dove. I am trying to find it on you tube but came across this one first. i cant figure out how to get it to my blog for some reason... but here's the link

"The face of sin today often wears the mask of tolerance."
~President Thomas S Monson
Examples of Righteousness May 2008 Ensign

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Stuffed Shells

I am in love with Cook's Country cooking magazines! And these stuffed shells are one of my favorites! They are truly a must try! the balsamic gives it the perfect touch!

Marinara Sauce:
2T. extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/4tea. red pepper flakes
1/4C. red wine
2T. balsamic vinegar
2 (28oz) cans crushed tomatoes
1C low-sodium chicken broth
2T. dried basil (fresh will blacken and loose flavor as its simmered)
2tea. sugar
1/2 tea. salt

Stuffed Shells:
1 (12oz) box jumbo pasta shells
3C ricotta
1C grated Parmesan (fresh grated is best!)
3C shredded mozzarella
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 C finely chopped fresh basil (if you substitute with dried, remember to half the amount!)
2 large eggs, plus 2 yolks, lightly beaten

1. For the sauce: heat oil, garlic, and pepper flakes in large saucepan over med heat until fragrant, about 1 minute. add wine and vinegar and simmer until reduced by half, about 2 minutes. stir in tomatoes, broth, basil, sugar, and salt and simmer until slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Set aside.

2. For the shells: cook the shells in boiling water with some salt. drain. set aside.

3. For the shell filling: combine ricotta, Parmesan, 1.5 cups mozzarella, garlic, basil, eggs, and 1/2teaspoon in bowl.

4. get two 8 inch pans. spray with pam. put some sauce in each pan, just enough to cover bottoms {about 1.5-2 cups}. fill the shells with the cheese filling. {i use an ice cream scoop and fill shells about half way} line filled shells in the pans, seam side up. top the shells with another 1.5-2 cups marinara per pan. Cover with foil. Bake at 400 degrees until sauce is bubbling and shells are heated through, about 40-50 minutes. Remove foil and top shells with remaining sauce and mozzarella cheese. bake until cheese is spotty brown, about 10 minutes.


Sunday, August 17, 2008

Caleb got his toe ran over by the grocery cart a couple months ago and its finally grown out to where its falling off. Ive tried to not point it out to him when i look at it bec i dont want him to mess with it, but he came running out of his room tonight yelling "i broke my toe!" too funny! he wasnt in pain or anything, just somehow noticed. He wanted each of us to look at it closely, so i offered to take a picture, and he jumped at the offer!

His face while pointing out his toe nail, i thought it was cute. mom goggles, i guess? :)

now i dont know, but i think he looks so old in this picture!
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more pool

I'm not sure if i'll ever get the hang of posting the bottom things first...but here are more pics from the post that is below...

Caleb really wanted Daddy to try the slide, and despite Jakes explanations to Caleb about his weight.. and how it exceeds the limit, Caleb won the fight.

jake was so proud when out of nowhere Caleb jumped off the slide {granted not high, but its the thought that counts, i guess}...he announced "He's finally got something from me!" because jake is from a family that loves cliff jumping :)
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I got this pool on clearance on target, it was much dinkier than i expected...but the kids still loved it. Caleb tried just about every way of going down the slide, it gave us lots of laughs! grace wasnt so thrilled :)
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We went to the Lake with the Albistons, and after grilling we went fishing. Here is Brooklyn being a cutie.

and grace who is apparently still hungry...

Caleb caught a fish!! It was so big we could bearly reel it in!! ;)
kaleb albiston actually caught a fish about 4times as big as calebs, but i didnt get a pic of it.

here i am, fishing with two poles, and still caught nothing :(
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19 TONS later, we have gravel instead of mulch. we actually need a few more tons to do the bushes on the side of the house...someday!
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attachment parenting

We are a family that believes strongly in attachment parenting...and apparently its worn off :)
Caleb gave Henry a whirl in Grace's new carrier
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Titi got Gracie this baby carrier for her to carry her babies in. Gracie loves it, but i think i love seeing her wear it even more! Its really so cute. She fell in love with it in the store and we just knew we couldnt refuse her :) And it so funny to watch her eat over her baby as shes wearing it...i had countless meals like that with Grace in the ergo. Thanks Titi!!
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Cousin Henry

Papa opening presents, Caleb showing Grest-Grandpa Smokey what Papa got. I know its not a very good picture, but i wanted to post one that had my grandma and Grandpa in it. They are the best!
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I'm sure you guys are excited about Gracies hair as i am, so thought i should post a picture of it these days...!!
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As a young child i was around horses constantly. My best friend's family {who i was with daily} had a horse farm. Amy {my best friend} and i would saddle up as soon as we got home from school and be home for a late dinner. on weekends we would pack a lunch and leave in the morning and go where ever our hearts desired. Though i never got nearly as comfortable on a horse as Amy was, i loved it. I havent ridden for years. And the last time i did my back just coulnt handle it. {back surgery and all}

We went to Ashley's this past week and got to feed some of the horses that live on her family's farm. it was so peaceful and enjoyable {while it lasted!}. There was a colt who was so warm and friendly, and didnt bite Calebs fingers off! :) They were so gorgeous and friendly i just wanted to jump on one and run through the hills again. sounds a little cheesy, hugh! :)

Maybe someday...
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Caleb and Gracie copy eachother a lot, which means they end up having times like this together a lot. I love watching and enjoying their love for eachother!
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reading time :)
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Gracie loves wearing my sunglasses. Needless to say this is like my 10th pair of the summer....
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Wednesday, August 13, 2008


My Daddy is turning 60 years young today!
I am so grateful to be so close to him. That he is still so young and healthy. That i have always had him supporting me. That i was blessed with him as my Daddy. That my kids know him so well!
Happy Birthday Papa! We love you so much and are so thankful for you! How did we get so blessed?!?!
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Friday, August 8, 2008

Jonas, I guess...

As we were driving down the road the Jonas Brothers came on the radio and Jake and my conversation went something like this...
Jake: I guess we've reached that certain age where we arent cool anymore.
Me: Why do you say that?
Jake: I just dont get the Jonas Brothers, and people love them.

Me: I didnt even know this was the Jonas Brothers...your still doing better than me baby!
{people are comparing them to the beatles?? i mean, really!}