This blog is not an official website of
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, nor is Lindsay their official spokesperson.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Draft Cards


Dear Friend L,

So I just finished indexing my last batches of the "1942 Louisiana WWII Draft Registration Cards".  I love indexing.  You totally have me hooked.  Thanks for teaching me how to do it.  My husband started in 2007, but I wasn't interested then so I just let it go until a few weeks ago when you taught me.

This project was for men born on or after April 28, 1877 and on or before February 16, 1897.  As I entered the information for hundreds of men, I thought about them.  These men were all age 45 to 65.  That means that some of them served in the first world war.  What were they thinking?

Were these men excited and hopeful to fight again?  Were they tired and weary of world conflict?  One man was 77 (which was out of the age group).  Was he confused and filled out the wrong card?  Or did want to feel patriotic and so he filled one out anyways though it wasn't required at his age?  I don't know the answers to these questions.

One man I noticed was a reverend.  His birthday was also on Christmas.  I wondered if there was a correlation.  Maybe he grew up with an affinity for Jesus Christ, because they shared a birthday and it drew him to become a reverend, or maybe not, but I wonder about these men and their lives.

I felt sad for one man.  For his address he wrote "in a shack between the railroad and the airport".  For the name of someone who would always know him he wrote "no other living relatives".  He was 65 and I wondered if he was lonely.

On the back of the draft cards the men had to put descriptions of themselves.  Height, weight, distinguishing marks and more.  Many had nothing irregular about themselves, but some had scars, eye glasses, moles, and the occasional tattoo.  Many had parts of fingers missing.  Probably from farming or machinery accidents.  I tried to put together a mental picture of some of these men and what they must have been like in 1942.

I am sad the project is over.  I took a lot of ownership and pride in it.  Names are indexed in alphabetical order and I had names from C to Z because I started a little late.  I always checked as often as I could for more batches to appear, because I wanted to do as many as possible.

I am excited to start a new project.  I am excited to learn more about family history.

Gratefully,
Lindsay

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Get Over Yourself


Dear Friend M,

I am sorry that I have to be so blunt, but get over yourself.  I am tired of you playing the victim card.  We all are victims if we choose to be.  We all have hardships in life.  Some are brought upon us by our own choices, but many other hardships are because of others actions that we have no control over.  Yes, it no fun, but also have our agency about how we deal with that.

Yes, I know what you are going though, and it wasn't a part of your "life plan".  I wouldn't be living here and I wouldn't even know you, if my "life plan" had worked out.  There's also a gazillion other things that I wouldn't have done if my "life plan" had worked out.

Because you are so caught up in your situation, you can't look around you and see that so many other people have it worse off than you.  There are so many other people that need a friend.  Get over yourself and open up your eyes.

With the right attitude, you could be a great influence for good, but you need to stop throwing pity parties for yourself and get to work.  It makes me think of this song.

Sensitively,
Lindsay

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Two Holidays in One


Dear Mother,

Pioneer Day!!!  This year I bought a wagon wheel decoration for my house.  Talking to A. on the phone, she asked if it was for my garden, and I said "No, it's exactly what I said...a wagon wheel for my house."  I want to make a centerpiece thing with it.  Now that I've missed that boat, because it was yesterday, I will now have all year to find a buffalo skull thing to go with it.  I've always thought it was cool that the pioneers would write messages on them and leave them for the next traveler.  This past week we were driving through a wildlife refuge and I saw a sign that said "Bison viewing area" so I yelled at Husband to slam on the brakes so we could jump out and see the Bison.  Seeing their dried buffalo chips made me think of the pioneer songs out of the Primary Songbook, especially "Little Pioneer Children".

This is how we commemorated Pioneer Day.  At a BBQ playing SAND volleyball at this awesome house out in the country.  Can you believe somebody trucked in all that sand into a landlocked state?!?!?!?  It was very fun to say the least.  That's the moon coming up near the end of the night.
It's only been 3 weeks since Independence Day, but I totally feel like everyone is all done being patriotic.  In stores everything has been cleared out to make way for school supplies and pumpkins.  That is why I purposefully waited a few weeks before I wrote about the Fourth of July, so that I could remind people that this is an everyday thing.

I am so glad that I live in this country.  I am so glad that my voice can be heard.  I am grateful for the freedoms that we have.  I love everything red, white, and blue.  Daughter loves Fourth of July, too.  We could not get her to stand still for a picture.  I love how this accurately shows her energy that day.
I really wanted a picture though, since I MADE that dress.  As in I SEWED that dress.  Okay, I added a ruffle to a t-shirt and slapped on a bow, but I am so proud, because I don't have a lot of sewing accomplishments to my name.  Thanks for the things you've taught me over the years.  Daughter looks adorable!!!!  She loves that dress.  She knows that there is something special about it.
We watched a parade in the morning and in the evening we got to see ANOTHER patriotic band concert.  This one was bigger.  It had a philharmonic, and they lit up that civic center, and then lit off fireworks that were choreographed to the music, "1812 Overture" by Tchaikovsky (I love that piece, played it in high school!!!) and "Stars and Stripes Forever" by Sousa.  Then of course there were more fireworks at the end.  It was awesome.  I knew all but one song on this program, so it was a true delight.  Nothing boring about it.
 Yes, I love Fourth of July.  I am proud to be an American.  God bless America, my home sweet home.  I know part of my love comes from how we celebrated the Fourth of July growing up.  Thanks for teaching me.

Love,
Lindsay

Friday, July 23, 2010

God Loves Me


Dear Friend P,

As quick as it came, it all went away.  An opportunity was placed before me.  One that Husband and I really wanted.  We weren't looking for it, it just appeared in front of us (how lucky is that?!?!).  It was something that we always desired and hoped for, but it's not going to happen anymore.  We had to tell them "No".

Why?  Why would we give up an opportunity of a lifetime?  Because God loves me.  And because He loves me, He gives me revelation as to what His will is for me.

The scriptures say, "But, behold, I say unto you, that you must study it out in your mind; then you must ask me if it be right..."  Well, we did this about our decision.  We thought about it and then prayed, and everything seemed to be right.  Then the Lord revealed a few days later that it was His will to do things the exact opposite of what we had been planning.  You should read up on revelation to gain a greater understanding of what I am talking about as it pertains to my beliefs.

I still really look forward to you coming home at the end of the summer.  I am sure by now you are really curious what is going on, and maybe after more time passes, this will be an appropriate topic of conversation.  Please go surfing once for me!

Sincerely,
Lindsay

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Mark Your Calendars


Dear Readers,

Last Saturday night my daughter had the time of her life while she watched the Mormon Tabernacle Choir perform their Pioneer Day Concert with the Orchestra at Temple Square.  She clapped and loved every minute of it.  When Husband said to me, "so we are just going to let her stay up past her bedtime and watch it?"  I immediately said what came into my mind.

"If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things."  This is part of the 13th Article of Faith.  The Articles of Faith are 13 declarations written by Joseph Smith about what we believe.

I totally felt that I should let Daughter stay up.  These are the types of things I want her watching and listening to.  Sunday morning she woke up wanting to watch it again, but alas that was not possible.

Here is a link to the rebroadcast schedule.  It is not just a link to the archived performance.  BYU Television's website is www.byutv.org.

Enjoy,
Lindsay

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

There Is A God


Dear Friend P,

I know you do not go to my church.  I know that you also struggle with your belief in God.  I want to tell to tell you that I do respect your choices and beliefs (and you're always welcome to come for dinner anytime).  I also want to share with you some more of my beliefs.

This morning I woke up the same way I do everyday.  Tired, ha ha.  No really, this afternoon I received a phone call.   A very huge life changing phone call that I am not allowed to discuss the specifics right now due to legal reasons.  The results of this phone call show me that there is a God.

I already knew that before, emphasis on "knew".  It is not just something that I believe, but I truly know that there is a God.

Seeing how this phone call is an answer to many prayers for many people is amazing.  God knows me.  He knows the things that I want.  He knows what people need.  He is a great architect that directs people in and out of each others' lives at the right times.  He loves us and I know he loves you too whether or not you want to believe that.  God is real and man can strive to become like him.

I can't wait until you come back at the end of the Summer.  By then everything should be worked out and let me just say, you will be very surprised!!!

See you soon,
Lindsay

Monday, July 19, 2010

Motherhood: An Eternal Partnership with God


Dear Friend M,

When I first met you, your son was the same age that my daughter is now.  At the time I remembering you expressing so much frustration about being a mother and the hardships that came with it.  Now that my daughter is that same age, I think about you all of the time.

I constantly want to pull my hair out.  I never feel like I know what to do.  When I do feel confidant in my ability about something my daughter doesn't react how I think she should and then everything just spirals downhill.

I am sure you have already seen this, because it's been out for awhile.  It's from the Mormon Messages channel.  I wanted to send it to you anyways, because it really is wonderful!  It will lift you up, and help you remember that it is worth it!

I am so excited for your new baby!  She is almost here!

Understandingly,
Lindsay


Saturday, July 17, 2010

Book Club


Dear Husband,

I just wanted to let you know how much I have enjoyed our "book club" this past week.  I admit you surprised me with the idea, but I am glad that you went to the effort to see it through.

I loved that we each had our own copy of the book this time, so that we didn't have to wait for each other to read.  I liked that we could just shout out ideas while we were reading.  I especially loved it when Daughter came and read with us, so that it was one big family literate moment together.  Don't tell, but I secretly liked that you got the large-print editions.  I know it was all that they library had, but it was fun.

I still can't believe that I guessed the ending correctly.  I rarely am able to do that, so thanks for not getting mad.  You know how twisty and turny the plot was.  Anything could have happened.

I love you!  Thanks again.

Loves,
Lindsay

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Attention, Blog Stalkers!!!


Dear Readers,

Today I just wanted to give a shout out to all of my readers who are blog stalkers here.  Wait, that's all of you.  BUT, I just wanted to say that you are always welcome here.  I do not need your comments to validate me, because these are my beliefs and they won't change whether or not you comment here on my blog.

However, I had a realization.  I work so hard to maintain a certain anonymity, but I was not allowing my readers the same.  Previously, I only allowed Google users to comment, but I will now allow anonymous comments (which will be moderated first) in case someone would like to comment.  It's like the whole "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." thing.  (That's Matthew 7:12.)

I kind of like it how it is, but I definitely welcome others' thoughts.  You may comment or email them to lettersfromlindsay at gmail dot com.  I do appreciate your readership, and more valuable than your comments to me would be if shared this blog with your friends.  You can help uplift others, and help our blog stalking community to grow ;).

Always,
Lindsay

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

A Single Question


Dear Dad,

Yesterday I was admiring my handiwork on Husband's head as I was finishing a haircut for him.  I was thinking about the things I had learned about blending hair over the years and how far my skills had come.  It also made remember my "start" to my hair cutting career.  One day you just asked me a single question.

"Will you cut my hair?"

I had never wielded a set of hair clippers before.  I had never asked you before to cut your hair, or expressed an interest in cutting your hair.  Sure, I was interested in my hair, and maybe had talked my younger sister into letting me butcher trim her hair, but really cut hair?  That's how it got started.  Then I was given some clippers as a present, and then I started practicing on anyone who'd let me when I went away to school, and now only Husband is my single client.

It is amazing the domino effect from one single question.

Then I remembered another time that there was one single question that yielded an amazing domino effect.

Joseph Smith was troubled to know with which church he join.  After much thought, he decided in the spring of 1820 to pray to God to know.  He asked a single question which was to know which church he should join.  God himself appeared to Joseph along with Jesus Christ, his beloved son and told him none of them.  I know that this really happened, Dad.  I know you do too.  Did you know that there is THIS great website?  I was clicking around it for fun, and THIS is my favorite part.  Photographs always make everything so real.  These are over 100 years old!

I love you.

Love,
Lindsay

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Change Daily


Dear Brother,

Thank you for the kind words.  I have been thinking about some of the things that you have said and about how our relationship has been over the years.  Since you have written to me I have been mulling over some things I'd like to share with you.  I know it's been awhile since you wrote to me and I apologize for being slow.  I could just never make the jumble of thoughts in my head sound right when I wrote them down.

For some reason I have been thinking of this one thing to share.  Do you remember who had the pair of pajama pants that had the label that said "Change Daily"?  I might be remembering wrong, but I think it was you.  It was some no-name brand I think, but I remember that all of us kids thought it was hilarious that a pair of pants would carry a reminder to wear clean underwear as that's what we took it to mean.

I feel like I need to change daily.  I am always realizing that there is something that I could do better.

I need to change my parenting daily to keep up with Daughter's ever changing growth.  Right when I think I have her figured out, she's turned into someone different who is of course much more grown up :)

I also don't change my beliefs daily, but how I live them.  As I become more and more devoted to God, I change my daily actions to reflect that.

Now, I will be one of the first to admit that change can be scary, because it is unknown, but over the years I have learned to look forward to change, because it means growth with new challenges, and that's exciting to me.

I remembered that there was a good talk recently in General Conference about change and I was going to look it up to share with you, but in searching for it, I realized that the reason why I couldn't remember the specifics was because there have been a plethora of talks on change over the past 2-3 years.  Rather than pick just one, I decided to read all of them and share them with you.  I hope you get time to read them sometime, I know you're busy, but I have found such pertinent info in all of them.  It is amazing how relevant they are to my current life.




this is the talk that I was originally looking for!!!  read it if you only have time for one, and I have to include:


It has been an awesome morning reading all of those about change.  It also makes me remember something.  Once I was talking to a woman who was very interested in personalities and analyzing relationships between people.  With all of her knowledge, I was surprised when she kept saying to me, "but this is how I am.  I can't change.  This is just who I am," when referring to herself and her own personality and relationships.  I always felt so sad for her that she didn't realize that she could change and that it would be a good thing.  She would still be herself, just a better self, a more Christ-like perfected self.

Everyone has flaws and shortcomings, but that doesn't mean that we are stuck with them and just have to accept them.  We all have our agency to choose to improve ourselves, and I know that by doing so we will receive so much joy and happiness with our "better" characteristics that we will never miss that we are "different" from before.  I hope that she'll understand this principle someday so that she can have the same joy that I have regarding change.

I love you so much, and am glad that you are my brother.  I cannot wait to see you!!! (and I am so sorry it took me so long to get back to you)

Love,
Lindsay

Friday, July 9, 2010

Some Gratitude


Dear Readers,

Today I must express some gratitude.  My Heavenly Father has given me some extra love and blessings, so I feel that I need to express some gratitude.  Also, I have felt that my heart has been kind of heavy lately and I feel that I need to lighten things up.

I am grateful for my Savior, Jesus Christ.  I am grateful for his atoning sacrifice that can wipe away my sins and also take away the hurts and pains in my life.

I am grateful for Husband.  He is so self-less and wonderful.  He helps me, loves me, and supports me.  I love how he is with Daughter.  I love how confidant he is.  I think he is awesome in his professional life, and balances that with faith and family very well.

I am grateful for family.  I am grateful to have the opportunity to be a mother.  I love watching Daughter grow so much.  I am grateful to have support of extended family members.

I am grateful for our country.  I wish we celebrated all year long.  We have so many freedoms that I know I sometimes take for granted.  God bless America, my home sweet, home.  I love to travel around the country and see all of the unique places that make up the United States of America.

I am grateful for good friends.  I have many acquaintances that do add spice and variety to my life, but I am truly grateful for those that are good friends to me.  Those who are trustworthy, non-judgemental, positive, to name a few qualities.

I am grateful for hot water.  It makes bathing and showering awesome!!!  I love how it relaxes me.

I am grateful for green plants.  They provide oxygen for me to breathe, and they just look so nice.  I always feel better when I am surrounded by greenery (trees, shrubs, grass, flowers).

I am grateful for so many things.  I know I have truly been blessed.

Gratefully,
Lindsay

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Judge Not that Ye Be Not Judged


Dear Friend T,

I was telling you before about selling our extra car, which has been a great blessing to us in our journey to simplify.  However, throughout this process I have been so surprised by one thing.  We have had to justify our decision to so many people, when it shouldn't matter to them.

It made me think about the judging that I routinely do.  As if others need to ask my permission to make decisions in their lives.  Ridiculous.  It made think of the scripture in the New Testament that says, "Judge not, that ye be not judged." (Matthew 7:1-2)

The car is a tangible object.  There is not reason for it to be a major issue with people.

Judges make judgments on cases in their courtroom.  That is something that they have stewardship over.  Bishops in our church make judgments for those that they have stewardship over.  There are times that judgments should be made, but over a car?

People don't need to do things a certain way to make me happy.  I don't rule the world, but sometimes I find myself judging something dumb, like clothes, parenting skills, intellectual ability, etc.  A bunch of little things that don't really matter.  Jesus taught that we shouldn't judge, so that is something that I will continue to work on for the rest of my life.

I hope you had a Happy Fourth of July.

Thoughtfully,
Lindsay

Monday, July 5, 2010

Words, Words, Words


Dear Friend T,

Hi.  I know you don't know me.  You might remember my family's name, but you moved away almost 20 years ago, so you might not remember anyone from that area.  I hope it's okay that I consider you to be my friend.  I saw your adoption profile online and recognized you and then found your blog and have read a little bit there.  We have a 5-10% chance of having more children so I can relate to infertility.

I have been thinking a lot about you.  I recently was in the company of someone who unintentionally used negative adoption language instead of positive adoption language.  I was surprised at how much it hurt me.  I always thought of myself as being a sideliner when it came to adoption, because I don't know if I ever really will adopt (I keep hoping my 5-10% will pull me through).  It's not even an option for me to apply for a few years until my financial situation changes,.  I guess I am much more sensitive than I thought.

People say so many things that they don't know are insensitive.  Sometimes it is ignorance, sometimes it is innocence, or lack of experience.  It is interesting that words are so powerful.  They uplift or they can tear down.  They can encourage or they can discourage.  Good luck to you and I hope you find your princess soon.

Warmly,
Lindsay

Saturday, July 3, 2010

I Love Myself


Dear Readers,

I love myself.  Not in a narcissistic way (well, probably some of that), but just I am so happy with me and who I am, so today is a bonus day.  Here are some pictures of myself that show how happy I am and love what I am doing with my life.  Enjoy!  If  this is shameful, sorry, I guess I am hoping you to be inspired to love yourself, because you should.  You are worth it!

Yours truly,
Lindsay
 These make me happy.  I took them myself of flowers that magically grew themselves in my front yard!!!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Halfway Mark


Dear Husband,

I know we've been so busy.  Yesterday we talked about it a little bit, but with the beginning of July comes the halfway mark in the calendar year.

Think about where we've come from these past six months and think about where we want to go in the next six months.  I think we're on schedule, maybe even ahead.  It's definitely time to pull out our New Year's Resolutions to see how we are doing.  I have also had this song stuck in my head.  I think of it as a barometer to show if I am on the right path to grow.

I am so proud of you for trying to grow, for trying to do all that you're supposed to do.  You are unrecognizable from six months ago.

Here's to the future!

Loves,
Lindsay

Happy Marriage


Dear Friend D,

I absolutely love how you treat your wife.  I have been thinking for 24 hours how to put it into words and I just can't.  I really am not sure how I can possibly describe it and I have just spent 20 minutes trying to figure it out.  I'll have to work on trying to explain it to Husband so I can tell you.

I think one of the best things is that you have been married for 10 years and you are treating her like most newlywed husbands do.  You are so loving and helpful.  You are so adoring, but not smothering.  You are quick to do anything for her, but not patronizing or overbearing.  You playfully tease her, but I love how quick you are to shower love and affection on your wife after one of your witty remarks.  You anticipate her needs and then fill them for her, pleasantly surprising her.  You clearly treat her with the highest respect and it just seems like you don't see that too much anymore, especially among those who have been married for awhile.  I love how Husband treats me, but we have a few years before we hit the 10 year mark!

Thanks for the breakfast, it was yummy, and we did make it home just barely in time, so it was perfect.  We totally have to go camping again sometime.  It had been too long since we've seen you guys.

Sincerely,
Lindsay

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Patriotic Band Concert


Dear Brother,

I have decided that I must write immediately to you.  I just got home from an outdoor band concert.  It is one of many of the area's patriotic celebrations.  It was simply splendid.

The band is made up of community members ranging in age from 14-retired.  Those in attendance ranged in age from babies to retired.  Those who had served in wars were wearing baseball caps describing their service and there were also immigrants there, some wearing t-shirts saying "Seasons Greetings", clearly still catching onto the American spirit of patriotism.

Ten numbers were played.  These were fun.  Music of John Williams, the Beatles, and Michael Jackson were mingled among favorite patriotic pieces; "The Stars and Stripes Forever", "The Star Spangled Banner", and "The Ultimate Patriotic Sing-Along".  The sing-along was made up of the "Battle Hymn of the Republic", "America the Beautiful", "You're a Grand Old Flag", and "God Bless the U.S.A".  Preparations had been made to print the words on the program so that all could join, and all of the audience spontaneously stood up to the lyrics:
"There's pride in every American heart and it's time we stand and say: I'm proud to be an American where at least I know I'm free, and I won't forget the men who died who gave that right to me."
Thank you for serving in the armed forces.  I know you'll say that there are those who are dying in Iraq and Afghanistan, and you're not, but you do wear the uniform and you are serving our country.
You know I love these types of concerts, but this was the best one out of the three years that I've attended.  Two songs, "National Emblem March" and also "The Cowboys" brought back so many memories to me.  I danced to "The Cowboys" at BYU the year before you joined the band after your mission.  So fun!  Also, did you play the "National Emblem March" in high school with me?  It might have been after you had graduated that it was our parade song.  I definitely danced to it in the color guard.

I have decided that T.S. is probably one of the most under appreciated teachers that ever taught at our high school.  His work with the band was phenomenal and he did so many great things to advance the band program.  When you think about how many students pass through the band program every year and he was there for so many years, that's a lot of student's that T.S. came in contact with.  I also just think about how much I learned by being in a band; music theory, how to belong to a large group, how to have discipline, the joy of working with and accomplishing something with others, etc.

I have actually wanted to look up an email address for T.S. and email him a thank you letter for a couple years now, but I know, intentions mean nothing.  I will tell you when I finally follow-through and email him.

I wish you could have been here tonight, but at least we'll see you and your family soon.

Love,
Lindsay