Sunday, August 15, 2010

Where do your prejudices lie?

I watched Paper Clips, a documentary about a small Tennessee town whose Middle School was trying to teach it's children about diversity and acceptance.  They came up with the idea to teach them about the Holocaust. During a discussion about the 6 million Jews that died a girl asked what 6 million was; that she had never "seen" 6 million.  They decided to search for something that they could collect to represent this number.

Enter the paperclip. They discovered it was invented by a Norwegian and that people in Norway wore paperclips, during the war, to represent people they knew who had been killed or taken to the concentration camps .  This was there way of silently remembering and speaking out so as to not be taken away themselves.

The kids started writing letters, one thing led to another and they ended up collecting over 27 million paperclips.  Most would come one or two at a time with a letter telling the kids about the person the paperclip represented. They had visitors who were survivors and ended up getting a rail car that was used to transport Jews.  It was brought to the school and set up as a memorial that 6 million paper clips were housed in.  They are now sharing this lesson with other schools who come there on field trips.

One of the things that was mentioned in the documentary was how quick we are to judge people.  We may think we are not prejudiced because we are fine with Jews, with African-Americans, with Latinos or Asians etc. etc. etc.  But how often do we stereotype people.

Here are some common ones that I have heard:

Southern drawl = stupid red neck.
Overweight person = lazy slob.
Disheveled and unkempt clothes and hair in a Wal-mart = white trash.
Mormons = those crazy people with 6 wives who wear long black coats and have horns.

People think these things but they are all wrong.  I personally don't have 6 wives or horns. I shave mine down for ease of hairstyle.  (bazinga!)

It made me really stop and think about how quick we can be to put labels on people and what a travesty this is.  The thought doesn't really hurt the person, (if there is no action on the thought) I think the person it hurts is the one doing the labeling.  Why cloud your head with negative thoughts about others.  What is the point?

Judge not lest ye be judged ( I read that this is the most mis-quoted scripture and is actually Judge not, that ye be not Judged - Matthew 7:1)

It really gave me something to think about and put into practice.  To have more compassion, pity, and love for others who are different.  It also makes me wonder what labels have been put on me.

Where do your prejudices lie?

Friday, August 13, 2010

Where is my wagon?

Ok, so I have fallen off the diet wagon and I am trying to get back on.  I have gained a few pounds since I have been back home and unemployed even though I have been walking/jogging/doing yard work etc.

I am cooking dinner, bread, trying new recipes etc. and it has gotten tougher to follow a strict diet.  When I was working I would fix myself a lunch, usually a salad, and snacks for the day.  Now that I am fixing food for the whole family I have to make stuff everyone wants to eat.  Another problem is that my youngest LOVES to bake brownies, something I have a very hard time saying no to.

Today I tried to find my wagon and take the driver's seat again.   School starts in a couple weeks so that should cut down on the brownie baking. Hopefully I can take the wagon for a ride and control the beastie.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Home Alone!

Today has been somewhat strange.  Hubby and oldest daughter are at work.  Youngest daughter is at girls camp.  It has been me and the pug home alone all day.  Needless to say the house has been quiet.  It has been an overcast rainy day; the perfect type of day for a nap.  I have to admit I nodded off while I was crocheting in front of the t.v.  I am working on a granny square afghan to put up on the Etsy shop.

My mom always said that she liked rainy days.  It made her feel like she could stay home and get things accomplished instead of having to go out running errands.  I usually don't like rainy days because they are dark and gloomy.  The older I get, the more I like rainy days.  I am starting to see them through my mother's eyes.  They make you feel like snuggling into a blankie and reading or going in the kitchen and baking something yummy.

Even though I like a rainy day I am much more productive on a sunny day.  I am more energized by them (if I don't have to be out in the hot blazing sun which makes me feel like popsicle melting onto the pavement).

It's strange how you can be affected by things like the weather, the sun, having other people around.  I will enjoy it while I can.  The youngest, the noisier bouncier one, will be home tomorrow.  Although I love her energy, her joie de vivre, I will savor the quiet a little longer.