Monday, December 28, 2009


Remember how I posted about my rebellion against the rush of... life? The busyness?

Here is a quote that I found while reading Nie's blog.

"Author Anna Quindlen reminds us not to rush past the fleeting moments. She said: “The biggest mistake I made [as a parent] is the one that most of us make. . . . I did not live in the moment enough. This is particularly clear now that the moment is gone, captured only in photographs. There is one picture of [my three children] sitting in the grass on a quilt in the shadow of the swing set on a summer day, ages six, four, and one. And I wish I could remember what we ate, and what we talked about, and how they sounded, and how they looked when they slept that night. I wish I had not been in such a hurry to get on to the next thing: dinner, bath, book, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less”(Loud and Clear [2004], 10–11).

Quoted from Elder M. Russell Ballard in this talk. 

Let's just live in the moment.  Always.


I was thinking that I should do a post about any New Year's Resolutions I have.

Then I realized that I kind of did that with one of my last posts.

I have plans to set other goals, too, however.

I'll get back to you when I have those laid out.

I've also been having some thoughts about harnessing my gusto for life again.  I feel like I'm a little bit... stuck in a rut.

Also, I hate it when I sleep until noon.  It makes me feel so very... slob-ish.   

(unless, that is, I was up really ridiculously late the night before.)

Hey. I found a goal!

Go to bed at midnight or earlier to reduce the odds I will sleep until noon.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Like, woah.

"In this matter of counterfeit intimacy and deceptive gratification, I express particular caution to the men who hear this message.  I have heard all my life that it is the young woman who has to assume the responsibility for controlling the limits of intimacy in courtship because a young man cannot.  What an unacceptable response to such a serious issue!  What kind of man is he, what priesthood or power or strength or self-control does this man have that lets him develop in society, grow to the age of mature accountability, perhaps even pursue a university education and prepare to affect the future of colleagues and kingdoms and the course of the world, but yet does not have the mental capacity or the moral will to say, "I will not do that thing"?  No, this sorry drugstore psychology would have us say, 'He just can't help himself.  His glands have complete control over his life--his mind, his will, his entire future.'

"To say that a young woman in such a relationship has to bear her responsibility and that of the young man's too is the least fair assertion I can imagine.  In most instances if there is sexual transgression, I lay the burden squarely on the shoulders of the young man--for our purposes probably a priesthood bearer--and that's where I believe God intended responsibility to be.  In saying that I do not excuse young women who exercise no restraint and have not the character or conviction to demand intimacy only in its rightful role.  I have had enough experience in Church callings to know that women as well as men can be predatory.  But I refuse to buy some young man's feigned innocence who wants to sin and call it psychology."


I found a printed copy of Jeffrey R. Holland's talk "Of Souls, Symbols, and Sacraments" (which is great... you should read it) today, and decided to read through some of it.

I came across the above quote and WOAH.

Seriously, you tell 'em Elder Holland.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Just some thoughts.

Another thing I've recently realized, is that I'm currently in a sort of state of rebellion against... obligations.  And deadlines.  In general.

I think it's a product of the fact that I spent the majority of my life focused on accomplishment as my main form of self-esteem.  I wasn't anything unless I was achieving.

I am currently undergoing a change of mindset in that category, and learning how to slow down, and focus instead on if I am deriving joy and happiness from whatever it is that I'm doing with my time everyday.

Things I've spent more time doing:

actually cooking healthy, satisfying, (vegetarian) meals
catching up with old friends
getting to know my newer friends better
being able to help random people who need it
actually getting enough sleep (for the first time since elementary school, probably)

Things I'm still hoping to devote more time to:

volunteering at heritage, walden school for the arts
learning how to sew, knit, and crochet
making my own homemade cleaning products, soaps, shampoos,
READING. EVERYTHING. (but especially old classics or children's books I never had a chance to read)
Discovering new, delicious, vegetarian recipes

Specific topics I want to read up more on:

vegetarianism, veganism, and locavorism
cultural anthropology
everything eco-friendly and green
eco-friendly parenting (i know... i'm not a parent yet, but who says it's too soon to learn about parenting?)
creativity and letting out our inner artist
female body image
food, and eating
activism and lots of other social issues

GAH.  That is not even all of them.  And there are so many more subjects I'm interested in, that I'm considering studying when I go back to school (did I mention I want to go back to school?), like Spanish. And French. And women's studies, and maybe even global politics. and international affairs.

If you hadn't noticed before, I'm currently going through a period of... liberalization.

Now. There is one problem.

I have to earn money to survive.

I've been substitute teaching, but I can't say that I particularly derive a lot of happiness from it.  I know, I know... I can't always have a job that I absolutely love, ...but can't I have one that I at least don't hate?  And that doesn't make me SO. EXHAUSTED. every day I have to do it?

(Okay, I'll admit that my rebellion against obligations isn't helping in this area very much.)

(But c'mon... I've gotta draw the line somewhere.  Preferably somewhere before the point when i run out of food because I haven't been working and can't afford anymore.)

uh. yeah.


Living Life the Slow Way

Let's begin this discussion by viewing a quick video clip.

and YES. you have to watch it. (you know who you are).

So... does something about that seem wrong to anyone else??

I've been thinking about this a lot lately, and I feel like our society has become increasingly unaware of the ridiculous levels of busyness to which we have become accustomed.

I honestly don't believe we were intended to become so busy that we have to ignore many of our bodies signals in order to keep up with the insane schedules we have set for ourselves (school, work, church, friends, family, volunteering, etc. etc. etc.).

I don't know when it happened, but at some point we became more pre-occupied with doing, and accomplishing, then we are with achieving a level of balance and happiness in our lives.

 There is an excellent scene in the movie Tuck Everlasting which reminds me of this very epidemic.  Unfortunately I couldn't find the scene anywhere. So the quote will have to do (albeit, it is a lot less captivating):

"Winnie Foster was beginning to lose track of time. Had she been there a day? A week? A month? It seemed to Winnie that the Tucks lived in a way the rest of the world had forgotten. They were never in a hurry and did things the slow way. For the first time Winnie felt free to explore, to ask questions, to play."

I have so many more thoughts on this topic, but they aren't organized yet.  I'll have to organize them and start posting them as they become fully formed.  But I'm curious if any of the rest of you have noticed this or had any thoughts that you wouldn't mind sharing?  I'd love to hear about it.  Let's discuss!
I really love this quote:

"Boys and girls in America have such a sad time together; sophistication demands that they submit to sex immediately without proper preliminary talk. Not courting talk — real straight talk about souls, for life is holy and every moment is precious."— Jack Kerouac

But I'm slightly confused as to what the correct interpretation of it is.  Is it advocating sex before marriage?

I just love the ending part the most I guess-- "real straight talk about souls, for life is holy and every moment is precious."

Because with that, I totally agree.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


So, i was thinking just now.

I came to the conclusion that words are completely and utterly inadequate when it comes to trying to define one's self.

Am I feminist? beautiful? intelligent? passionate?

What do those words even mean?


I am complex. More complex than I (let alone anyone else) can even understand.

The complexity of my spirit and individuality and thoughts and feelings and... existence... could never be described using such things as simple, one dimensional words. Even a combination of them.

There will always be some interpretation of a word, which is not what I meant when i originally used it to describe myself.  And maybe I'm not one hundred percent true to the genuine definition of that word anyway.  There's no way i'm using percentages to describe me.

(and besides... then you'd get into, like, double percentages. "mmm... i'm going to say my personality contains about eighty-three percent of about seventy-six percent of the definition of that word." But wait. That's only one definition. AND it was approximations.  Seriously?  no way.)  

I am not a percentage. Or a number.

And no matter how many words I could hypothetically try to use to describe myself, I would always be left wanting.

And i can't take that risk.

So for now, I am simply austin.

And I have discovered, that if you really want to know me, you will have to come with me; you will have to experience my presence.

For that, I believe, is the only way to truly know a person.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

i hope.

I hope I can teach my children to love the earth so much that this:

...will be them.