Monday, September 20, 2010

Why My Mom Rocks

Do you ever wake up with a heavy heart? Something akin to heartsickness? That's how I felt when I got out of bed today. It intensified when I found out many of my students had to evacuate their homes because of wild fires last night.

I don't know about you, but I have several things I do to get through this feeling. Here are a few of them:

1. Pop in my favorite Mormon Tabernacle Choir CD (Consider the Lillies. To me, this is their best, most calming and uplifting album.)
2. Stand back and re-evaluate my life - where I'm going and why, what my goals are and how close I am to obtaining them, and how I'm doing spiritually.
3. Serve others

I've done all on this list except item 3, and since I'm working three jobs and don't have much time, I decided to do something a little unusual. That is, I'm taking my lunch break to tell you all about my mother, and why, to me, she "walks on water." I wish I could be at home right now, helping her out in the garden or the kitchen, but this will have to suffice.

Betty Pearson, born on February 9, 1955, is the third of five children. She was raised in Bountiful, UT, in the same house where her parents still live.

When she was 14 years old, she learned to play the cello, and played in orchestras all through college and beyond.

Betty is the one with the cello. :-)

She met Karl Pearson through Mormon Youth Symphony, where Karl (my dad) played oboe. They were married on May 6, 1977, and are parents to five boys and two girls.

Betty has devoted her life to service and self-betterment, and has done so in the following ways:
  1. Service to Family
  2. Service to Church
  3. Service to Community

Service to Family 

  • Learned to make a monthly budget of $450/month for gas, food, and non-food items for six adults/teenagers and three children when her husband lost his job several years ago--a budget she is able to maintain to this day
  • Has always had a huge garden - spends hours every day maintaining the garden, and preserving (canning/bottling, drying, freezing, etc.), harvesting, and storing the extra food
  • Taught her children basic business principles, and owned a home-run business for several years
  • Strongly encouraged wholesome music in the home, and started all of her children on instruments and singing (which they all continue today) 
  • Has saved (and made) more money by being a stay-at-home mom than if she'd gone to work, even while Karl wasn't employed
  • Helped her children appreciate other cultures by:
    • Hosting exchange students from more than 10 different countries - over 25 exchange students who stayed anywhere from three weeks to ten months
    • Opening her home to members of the LDS faith from all around the world who needed a place to stay
    • Encouraging and fostering a strong love of learning in her children, whether through formal or informal education
  • Home educated all seven of her children

The family - minus Mike (on a mission in Japan)

Service to Church

  • Started and maintains an online email list for thousands of missionary moms (currently over 6,000 members worldwide) which has:
    • Helped at least (if not more than) 15 people find, and be baptized as members of the LDS faith
    • Connected childhood friends
    • Connected missionaries and their converts from years and years earlier
    • Provided needed support for mothers and fathers of missionaries
  • Has been instrumental in helping thousands of missionaries each year receive Christmas and care packages
  • Has served faithfully in every calling given to her.
  • Taught her children to 
    • Never say "no" to a calling 
    • Serve faithfully in any/every capacity
    • Recognize when unhappiness comes from within, rather than placing the blame on others or on circumstances
    • Serve faithfully as missionaries (her sixth missionary is currently serving in Japan. Only one more child to go, and all seven of her kids will have served missions.) 
    • Be independent
  • Spends hours doing family history research (one of her biggest passions) for family and friends
  • Spends hours a week instructing others on how to research their family history
   Service to Community
  • Founded and was chairman for Utah Valley Citizens for Decency - a group responsible for removing pornography from many stores and gas stations along the Wasatch Front, including all of the 7-11 stores.
  • Was Conference Chairman for the Utah Home Education Association
    • Responsible for organizing (and handling media and advertising of) yearly conferences for UHEA - which are similar in size and scope to BYU's Education Week, having over 50 workshops, over 100 commercial exhibits, keynote speakers, etc.
  • Keeps herself updated on all things political
    My mom never allows herself to be complacent with where she is in life. I've never, ever seen her waste time. She spends all of it improving her life and the lives of those around her.

    Other things about my mom:
    • Co-authored and published a successful book with her husband.
    • Maintains her Suzuki training and teaches cello and music lessons weekly
    • Has learned so much about health and nutrition - and the diseases with which she deals - that doctors have had to refer her to other doctors... who in turn refer her to others. They all say they can't help her any more with her health than what she already knows.
    • Has paid off every car she has owned, including her current Subaru, through playing her cello at weddings, receptions, company parties, and through teaching cello lessons.
    • Does everything she can to keep herself healthy even though she struggles with the following health problems:
      • Diabetes
      • Celiac Disease (allergies to gluten (wheat) products)
      • Asthma
      • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
      • Fibromyalgia - which comes anytime she accidentally ingests wheat

      She isn't comfortable talking about herself (this will probably embarrass her a great deal), so my siblings probably don't know most of these things about her. This is my service to her, and my way to show appreciation to her for what she has done for me, and what she has taught me. I love her very much, and couldn't ask for a better friend or mother.

      Tuesday, September 14, 2010

      Must apologize!

      I haven't posted anything in a really long time and just wanted to say I'm sorry for that. :-) I have an actual excuse. Or four. :-)

      First, I'm working three jobs, and am away from the computer from 6:45am until 7:00pm most days. It's been fun to be so busy, but really hard on my "internet" life. :-) You know, Twitter, Facebook, and my blogs. My full-time job is centered around the computer, but I don't even have time to think about getting on the internet for fun stuff. 

      Next, I'm dating someone. He's totally super, hot, awesome, fun, and cool. Oh, and hot. :-) Plus, he's a genius - seriously. Molecular biologist, amazing artist, great musician. Can't go wrong with someone who has brains, in my opinion. :-)

      So, basically, I get home from work and head to his place, or we go out somewhere, then I come home and go straight to bed.

      Anyway. Just thought I'd let you all know that I still exist, but that I won't be blogging a whole lot for the next while. At least until things calm down.

      And, just for kicks and giggles, my newest favorite Youtube video:

      Isn't that awesome? :-) Okay, so if you have a hard time perceiving differences in pitches, it won't be so funny. Sorry 'bout that. :-) I think it's simply wonderful, though. :-)