Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Day 120, April 30

"I look for the new Teacher, that shall follow so far those shining laws, that he sall see them come full circle, shall see their rounding complete grace, shall see the world to be the mirror of the soul, shall see the identity of the law of gravitation with purity of heart, and shall show that the Ought, that Duty, is one thing with Science, with Beauty, and with Joy."--Ralph Waldo Emerson in an address at the Harvard Divinity School, July 15, 1838

I read this quote and had to re-read it several times before I had even an inkling of an understanding of it.  I'm certain that others will have different interpretations of it, but, for me, the poet was saying that we do not need to choose between science and faith, that they will work together, complementing each other, rather than competing with each other.

The debate between science and faith will probably always be with us to some degree.  I have never seen a conflict, however; I see a world in which God's laws and those of nature are in harmony.  For did not the Lord Himself create everything?

Joy for today:  recognizing, as did Emerson, that all "is one thing with Science, with Beauty, with Joy."

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Day 119, April 29

A couple of weeks ago in church, a sister spoke of the difference between a shepherd and a sheepherder.  A sheperd, she said, owns the flock, while a sheepherder is merely a hired hand.  The shepherd has a vested interest in the flock of sheep; the sheepherder only a passing interest at best.

She then likened the shepherd to the Lord.  Such a comparison is not new, of course, but her analogy somehow reached me when others, though similar, have not.

The Lord has a "vested interest" in us, His flock.  He wants each of us to succeed, to return to Him.  How simple.  And how complicated.  Returning to Him is simple because we have only to look to Him, to believe Him, and to believe in HIm.  At the same time, returning to Him is complicated because we have to subject our will to His, to turn over our sins to Him, to surrender our pride.

Joy for today:  giving ourselves to the Shepherd.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Day 118, April 28

“When a train goes through a tunnel and it gets dark, you don’t throw away your ticket and jump off. You sit still and trust the engineer.”--Corrie Ten Bloom

When hard stuff happens in your life, do you ever want to rail at God?  I have.  I've wanted to ask Him, "Why?   Why did this (whatever hard stuff it is) happen?   I don't understand."  Sometimes, to my shame, I have even remonstrated with Him.

And then I remember that my understanding is finite.  Of course I don't understand.  My limited perception can't possibly fathom His ways.  So I repent and shore up my faith, trusting Him.

Joy for today:  trusting the ultimate engineer.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Day 117, April 27

Yesterday, we attended a funeral for the son of some friends.  Mormon funerals are a celebration of the individual's life, and this one was no exception.  There was sorrow, of course, as well as tears.  But these were tempered by both tender and humorous memories.

As always, the music touched me deeply.  "How Great Thou Art" and "I am a Child of God" are favorites.  One song, however, "If I Could Hie to Kolob," moved me to tears.  It is not a song that we sing very frequently, and, so I paid particular attention to the words, especially those of the fourth and fifth verse:

"There is no end to virtue; there is no end to might;
There is no end to wisdom; there is no end to light.
There is no end to union; there is no end to youth;
There is no end to priesthood; there is no end to truth.

There is no end to glory; there is no end to love;
There is no end to being; there is no death above.
There is no end to glory; there is no end to love;
There is no end to being; there is no death above."

Joy for today: knowing that "there is no death above."

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Day 116, April 26

"Nothing is ever lost by courtesy.  It is the cheapest of the pleasures; costs nothing and conveys much.  It pleases him who gives and him who receives, thus, like mercy, is twice blessed."--Erastus Wiman

As I re-read yesterday's post, I realized that it sounded a bit harsh and condemning.  That is not my intention for this blog.  Today, I'd like to give an example of a courtesy extended to me.

A couple of weeks ago, I sent a thinking-of-you card to a friend.  I was rewarded in her thanks to me, both in person and in writing.  Can you believe it?  She sent me a card thanking me for sending her a card.  This lady takes courtesy to a whole new level.  Her thoughtfulness elevated my simple act and lifted my heart.

Joy for today:  being twice blessed by a courtesy.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Day 115, April 25

"Courtesies of a small and trivial character are the ones which strike deepest in the grateful and appreciating heart."--Henry Clay

Though I admire the writings of Henry Clay, I take exception to the description of courtesies as "small and trivial," for I believe that courtesies are never small and never trivial.  On the contrary, I believe that courtesy is the hallmark of a civilized society.  Our society has increasingly grown away from this as we disregard manners and basic civility.

When did we decide that a text sufficed as a thank-you?  When did we decide that a rude gesture and/or a crude word was the right way to deal with someone who has (probably) accidentally cut us off in traffic?  When did we decide that giving up a seat to an elderly person or a pregnant woman on a bus was too much trouble?

Certainly, this is not true of everyone.  There are welcome exceptions to this.  But my heart is saddened when I witness uncaring, unkind behavior.

Joy for today:  giving and receiving courtesies.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Day 114, April 24

It's that time of year again.  Today marks Larry's and my 41st wedding anniversary.  As I look back at the young, naive, and very foolish girl I was then, I marvel of what I am now:  old, not so naive, but still foolish.

Larry and I have been tested in many ways.  I know I've tested him with mood swings, depression, and what he calls my "mild eccentricities."  We've survived job lay-offs, the deaths of parents, flooded basements, five teenagers, and a host of other things that most couples our age have endured.  Somehow we've stuck it out.

Recently, I asked Larry about that, how we've managed to stay together.  His reply?  "Because we made covenants.  And because we're stubborn."

Covenants made in the temple have seen us through times when I was certain we weren't going to make it.  As for being stubborn, I claim that as well.

With the Lord's help, we're still here.  Still trying to get it right.

Joy for today:  keeping covenants.  And being stubborn about the right things.


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Day 113, April 23

"The best portion of a good man's life is his little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and of love."--William Wordsworth

Do you ever read obtituaries?  After naming the various family members left behind, they are usually composed of the individual's accomplishments.  For example, "He served as Chairman of the Board of XYZ Corporation" or "She worked as a Realtor for twenty-five years."  Those are great.  But they don't give the essence of a person's character.

So what is that essence?  How about "She volunteered in the local schools, reading to at-risk children?"  Or  "He was always there for a friend?"

These are the kind of facts I would like to see in obituaries ... or anywhere.   And I will remember, contrary to the poet's words,  the "little, nameless acts of kindness and love."

Joy for today:  remembering acts of kindness and love.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Day 112, April 22

Last week, I wrote about our church's Women's Conference.  I found in the Church News an excerpt from the General Relief Society President's talk.  She asked girls and women alike to imagine some of the possible spiritual "help wanted" signs we might encounter in this earthly journey.

Help Wanted:

Parents to bring up their children in light and truth.
Those to serve as mentors and offer helping hands along the covenant path.
Those who listen to the promptings of the Holy Ghost and act on impressions received.
Those who live the gospel daily in small and simple ways.
Family history and temple workers to link families eternally.
Missionaries and members to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Rescuers to find those who have lost their way.
Covenant keeprs to stand firm for truth and right.
True disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ.

What a difference in the world we could make if each one of us chose but one thing from this list and filled the "help wanted" posting.

Joy for today:  filling a help wanted position with our hands and our hearts.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Day 111, April 21

"A passionate interest in what you do is the secret of enjoying life, perhaps the secret of a long life, whether it is helping old people or children or making cheese or growth earthworms."--Julia Child

I've noticed that those times when I'm feeling down frequently coincide with those times when I am uninterested in life.  I'm wrapped up in myself with very little to think about except my own inadequacies and failures.

By contrast, those times when I'm feeling upbeat and alive coincide with those times when I am passionate about something.  It doesn't matter much what I'm passionate about, only that I'm involved, whether in writing a book or helping a friend pull weeds.

Joy for today:  being wrapped up in something beside myself.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Day 110, April 20

Today is Easter Sunday.  I wish I had profound and moving words for such a special day.  But I don't possess such words, so I turned to the hymn book where I found the beautiful song "I Believe in Christ" by Bruce R. McConkie

"I believe in Christ; he stands supreme!
From him I'll gain my fondest dream;
And while I strive through grief and pain,
His voice is heard:  "Ye shall obtain."
I believe in Christ; so come what may,
With him I'll stand in that great day
When on this earth he comes again
To rule among the sons of men.    (Fourth verse)

Joy for today:  believeing in Christ

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Day 109, April 19

I found the following story in the International Business Times from several years ago:

A 16-year old boy in Hebei, China, Lui Shi Ching, had carried his friend to school daily for the previous eight years.  His friend Lu Shao had a congenital disorder that made it difficult to talk.  Lui Shi Ching, smaller than Lu shao, decided to help carry him home one day when Lu Shao's mother didn't make it (to school) on time to pick him up.  Since then, he carried Lu Shao to and from school and even to restrooms.  Lui Shi Ching didn't even tell his own parents what he was doing for four years.  When asked how he could carry such a heavy load, he said, "I was happy, helping him out."  Lu Shao wrote in his diary that Lui Shi Ching's help had lifted a dark cloud in his life and let sunshine in.

When I read this story, I was so touched that I knew I had to share it here.  What a selfless act this boy performed for his friend.  And he did it not once, not twice, but for eight years.

Joy for today:  finding such an example of love.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Day 108, April 18

"Growing older frees you from all sorts of previous restrictions and guilt."  -- Betty Friedan

Darn it all.  Even at my advanced age, I still have restrictions and guilt.  But I'm getting over them.

Ten or so years ago, our family traveled to Utah to attend an 80th birthday party for my Aunt Elaine.  Guests were given name tags to wear.  Because I like to mix things up a bit, I went around switching people's name tags.  Imagine my father's surprise when he ended up wearing my name tag. (I tried to explain the humor in that, but Dad only shook his head at me.  My sense of humor sometimes baffled him.)  Anyway, it made for some interesting conversations.

Joy for today:  mixing things up.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Day 107, April 17

"Beauty is accepting what you are, who you are, and how old you are.  Ugliness is whe you try to be something else."  Sohpia Loren

We've talked before about beauty, what it is and what it's not.  Are big breasts beauty?  Maybe.  If they belong to you.  Are wrinkles beauty?  The thinking's divided on that.  I say yes.  I always figured I'd earned every one of my wrinkles.  (Have you ever been chastized by an orthodontist because your braces-wearing child has failed to brush his teeth sufficiently?  Nothing like wallowing in child-induced humility to give a mother wrinkles.)  Are freckles beauty?  Well, I hope so, since I've got lots of these sun kisses.

Joy for today:  accepting who you are.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Day 106, April 16

"Life is a big thing, it's got size, and you shouldn't be applying your passion to puny things."--Peggy Noonan

A few days ago, I used Mother Theresa's words about "small things."  Now I'm quoting someone else, saying "Life is a big thing."  Are these contradictory?

I had to think about it for a while and decided, no, they're not contradictory at all.  For the small things done in great love (Mother Theresa) can become the big things (in the above quote).

I spend my days doing "small things."  I go visiting teaching to the sisters in our ward, I write cards, I am on my knees frequently praying for friends and family.  All small things.  But, I like to believe, they become big things when done with passion and love.

Joy for today:  making small things big.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Day 105, April 15

"Grandmas ... can shed the yoke of responsibility, relax, and enjoy their grandchidren in a way that was not possible when they were raising their own children.  And they can glow in the realization that here is their seed of life that will harvest generations to come."--Erma Bombeck

Don't you love Erma Bombeck?  She always hit the proverbial nail on its proverbial head.  Whether in her humor or in more serious insights as the above, she knew what the rest of us were thinking and then said it in a few well-chosen words.

I believe I've shared in the past my own "shedding responsiblity" grandma experience of mixing up brownie batter with my then 3 year old granddaughter Reynna.  Rather than baking it as I'd intended, I suggested to Reynna that we each dip our spoons in it and have a bite.   One bite turned into two, and, pretty soon, we had eaten the whole bowl of batter one spoonful at a time.

Would I have done that with my own children?  Absolutely not.  I was too much the "good mother."  Isn't it strange how being a good mother can differ so strikingly from being a good grandmother?

Joy for today:  being a grandmother.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Day 104, April 14

Do you have trouble following up?  I do.  I have allowed many opportunities to slip by when I have failed to follow up.

Many years ago, I submitted a book proposal to an editor.  To my surprise, the editor wrote back, saying she would like to see the entire manuscript.  To my shame, I failed to follow up.  Any time I see this editor at a writers' conference, I cringe and pray she doesn't remember my name.

An elderly sister in our ward (church) asked me to bring her a copy of one of my books.  I promised I would do so.  Before I followed up, this sweet sister died.  I still berate myself for failing to follow up.

Fortunately, there have been instances when I have followed up.  How great is my joy that I did not let those opportunities pass by.

Joy for today:  following up.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Day 103, April 13

At last week's General Conference, a speaker reminded the listeners of the importance of gratitude.  However, he did not say that we should be grateful for things.  Rather, he emphasized that we should be grateful in things.  A small but important difference.

Three years and several months ago, I started this blog as a reminder to me to be more grateful for things.  Variations on that theme have followed, including this year's Joy in the Journey.  This speaker reminded us that it is easy to be grateful for things when our lives are going well.  It is more difficult to be grateful in things when we're in the midst of a crisis, whether it be of health, faith, finances, etc.  But, he said, if we can find gratitude in whatever circumstances we find ourselves, we will elevate ourselves in ways we had not foreseen.

For one who has difficulty being grateful for things, I wondered if I could do this.  Could I be grateful when I see a child struggling to be obedient to the Lord's commands?  Could I be grateful for health problems family members are experiencing?  Could I be grateful in financial setbacks?  Could I be grateful in a book rejection?

Tbe questions taunt me.  At the same time, they challenge me.

Joy for today:  being grateful in all things.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Day 102, April 12

"You are never too old or set a new goal or to dream a new dream." - C.S. Lewis

It is easy at this stage of my life to believe myself too old to try something new, to dream something new.  And isn't that sad?

When did I decide that "it's all over for me?"   I don't know.  Maybe it happened along the same time that gravity took over my body, sending all its parts southward.  Maybe it happened when I realized that my role as full-time mother was finished and I had been relegated to the sidelines in parenting.

Once again, I don't know.

And then I watched our church's General Conference a few years back where President Monson spoke about moving forward.  President Monson is in his mid 80s.  He is a remarkable man who never fails to leave me inspired by his words.  "Move forward."

Okay.  I admit it.  I'm not always moving forward.  Sometimes I'm taking several giant steps backward.  But then I pick myself up and try again.

Joy for today:  moving forward.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Day 101, April 11

"The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities."--Steven Covey

Years (and years) ago, I took a class from Steven Covey at Brigham Young University.  This was before he became famous with his books and seminars on organization.  Even then, I understood that his principles for effective living went far beyond the usual and were indeed Christ-centered.

We have probably all seen some kind of day planner.  Perhaps we have even used one, listing the things which we want to accomplish during any given day.  In the past, I have made myself to-do lists.  The trouble with those lists is that I didn't order my day according to my priorities.  I simply listed things that I wanted to get done without thought to how those things reflected my values.

If I truly value my relationship with my family, my friends, and the Lord, would not my list include ways to strengthen those relationships?  Instead, the list often contained such things as laundry, working on an article, or exercising.  Don't get me wrong--those are all good things, even necessary, but they aren't my priorities or what I claim are my priorities.

So what should my list contain?  How about writing cards to my grandchildren to remind them that grandma loves them?  How about reading the scriptures to grow closer to the Lord?

Joy for today:  making my schedule in sync with my values.


Thursday, April 10, 2014

Day 100, April 10

"Do small things with great love."--Mother Theresa

If I have used this quote before, I apologize.  (As I think about it, I've decided to take back that apology because the words are so powerful.)

Do you ever feel that your life will never amount to anything, that you haven't done anything important?  I have.  I question my contributions to my family, to my church, to my community.  After all, what have I--a stay at home mother for more than thirty years--done?

Not much.

These moments of self-doubt and self-pity are not uncommon.  Then I started thinking outside of the box.  (Do you ever wonder what this box is that we are supposed to think outside of?)

No, I'm never going to discover the cure for the common cold or win a Pulitzer prize.  I'm never going to end world hunger or invent something that will change the course of history.  But I can do small things, and, if I'm really in tune with the Spirit, I can do them with great love.

Last week, I was prompted to send a card to a friend.  I didn't write anything profound on it, just that I was thinking of her.  And I think I included a suggestion to do something naughty once in a while--it's good for the soul.  I mailed the card, then didn't think much more about it.

On Sunday, the friend came up to me in church and thanked me for the card, saying it came on a day when she was feeling down.  The incident caused me to think about other small things I could do.  A family in our ward is going through a hard time.  I can't fix their problems, but I can pray for them.  My Aunt Mae, at 89, is reaching the end of her life.  I can't change that, but I can send her flowers and cards.

Joy for today:  doing small things and sometimes even doing them with great love.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Day 99, April 9

Yesterday I wrote of Naaman who struggled to be obedient because of the simplicity of the command.  It occurred to me that many of us have similar struggles.  We question the Lord's directives because they seem too simple to hold real power.

Such was the case with the children of Israel when they fled from their Egyptian captors and landed in the wilderness wandering around for 40 years.  Even after the miracles they'd witnessed such as the parting of the Red Sea or the appearance of manna from heaven, they questioned Moses and the Lord.  The Lord sent fiery serpants to punish the people.  Then He provided a way that they could be cured.  All they had to do was look to the serpant raised on a pole.

The people scoffed at that, claiming that merely looking at the serpant could not possibly cure them.  Many died because they refused.

I am always sad when I read this story, first for the Israelites, then for myself, for I, too, have a difficult time obeying the simplest of commandments. I imagine the Father shaking His head at me, saying, "Jane, why do you doubt Me?"

Joy for today:  finding obedience in simplicity.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Day 98, April 8

"I've made this my rule:  when the Lord commands, do it."--Prophet Joseph Smith

What a powerful directive this is.  And how simple it is.  Do what the Lord commands.  No excuses.  No rationalizations of why we can't do it.  No anything but obedience.

The scriptures are replete with stories about obedience.  One such story is that of Naaman, who suffered from a debilitating disease and traveled from Syria to Israel to ask the Prophet Elisha to heal him.  However, when Elisha instructed Naaman to bathe seven times in the River Jordan, it was difficult for him to obey.

"Are not the rivers of Damascus better than all the waters of Israel?  May I not wash in them and be clean?" Naaman demanded of Elisha.

"If the prophet had bid thee to do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it, how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean?"

Wisely, Naaman decided to obey and was healed.  (2 Kings 5:1-14)

I'm glad that Namman got with the program and decided he'd do well to obey the Prophet, who spoke for the Lord.

Joy for today:  obeying the Lord

Monday, April 7, 2014

Day 97, April 7

By now, you probably know that I love quotes, especially those that say much in a few well-chosen words.  When a friend sent me the following, I had to share them:

"Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush." - Doug Larson

"In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt." - Margaret Atwood

"Walk lightly in the spring; Mother Earth is pregnant." - Kiowa Proverb

Joy for today:  finding beauty in words.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Day 96, April 6

We're going back to the topic of a week ago, that of the Atonement. In our ward bulletin, I found the following:

"Have you ever felt like your sins are so great that you can't be forgiven?  Have you ever felt that way yourself ... that awful feeling that because you've done something wrong, you're terrible, maybe even worthless .. that things are so bad you should just give up?

"Don't believe these lies.  They are some of the most effective weapons Satan has, and they simply aren't true.

"That's the beauty and the miracle of the gospel ... that through repenetance and the grace of God bestowed through the Atonement of our Savior, Jesus Christ, we all can repent.  We all can become what we have the potential to become.

"What we all need to learn and to remember is the Atonement of Jesus Christ is real.  Christ truly did suffer for our sins and made a way for us to be forgiven.  Through repentance, we can feel clean, pure and worthy, whole and happy.  No matter what we've done, there's a way back.  It's through repentance, and it's very real."--"Repentance is Real" by Joshua J. Perkey, New Era, March 2014)

This testimony is so powerful that I knew I had to share it.  For I have been that person who has believed that her sins were so terrible that she can't be forgiven.  I have been that person who has believed Satan's lies. I have been that person who believed she was worthless.  And, sometimes, I still am.

Joy for today:  believing Christ.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Day 95, April 5

Do you remember Christ's parable of the rich young man.  When the man asked Christ what he must do to gain eternal life, Christ told him to follow the commandments.  The man answered that he already did this and asked what else he must do.

Christ answered that he should give up all his riches.  The young man turned away, unable to do this.  When I heard this story most recently, I speculated on what "riches" might include.  Could it include pride and an inability to forgive?  Could it include time and energy?   Maybe the "riches" that we are required to give away is whatever prevents us from coming unto Christ.

Joy for today:  giving away that which holds us back from coming unto Christ.

Friday, April 4, 2014

Day 94, April 4

In the conference I wrote of yesterday, a speaker told the story of an 8-year-old girl, Brynn, who had only one hand.   Brynn wasn't deterred, though, by this.  She had resolved to make her life count and to serve wherever she could.

Wow.  What would happen if all of us made the same resolution?  I have two hands, but I wonder how much I accomplish with them.  Surely not as much as this tiny daughter of God who has already learned what it takes some of us a lifetime to comprehend.

Joy for today:  learning of a girl named Brynn.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Day 93, April 3

Last Saturday, our church held its first ever worldwide Women's Conference that included girls from eight-years-old and up.  (In the past, only women 18 and above were invited.)  As I watched the televised version of the conference, I was moved by the gathering of girls, young women, and women of "a certain age."

One speaker reminded us that, despite the differences in our ages, our nationalities, our languages, we share more in common than we have differences.  I found myself agreeing.  We share a belief in Christ, in His goodness and power.  We share a desire to make a positive difference in the world.  We share a love of family and friends.

Joy for today:  remembering what we share, rather than what divides us.

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Day 92, April 2

The other day in the grocery store, I saw a young father walking behind his little girl (probably about  2 1/2 years old) as she pushed a miniature grocery cart.  He handed her items from the shelves which she carefully tucked inside her cart.

I smiled to myself, thinking that it must double his shopping time to complete his task this way, but he did it with infinite patience and love.

It made me think of our Heavenly Father, walking behind us, patiently waiting for us to master what He could do in mere minutes.  Isn't that the way with true fathers?  They walk behind, waiting to catch us when we fall,  patient with our stumblings and fumblings.

Joy for today:  watching a sweet father in action.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Day 91, April 1

Yesterday, we talked about the Atonement.  Pretty serious stuff.  Today, we're going to lower our sights a bit and go back to one of my favorite topics:  my hot pink bra.

I can hear you moaning now.  "Oh no, that silly old woman is going to talk about her bra.  Again."  Yep.  There it is.  If you are tired of hearing about my bra, feel free to tune out.  I won't be offended.  At least, not much.

The fact is, the bra is wearing out.  One of the underwires (designed to keep the girls in place) is loose, causing it to move around in uncomfortable and even painful positions.  At times, it even pokes through my clothes.  And if that isn't embarrassing--to have a wire poke out like that.

Why don't I get rid of it?  I love that bra.  I love the color, one that I don't wear in my "outside" clothes as it doesn't flatter my pasty white complexion.  I love the juxtaposition of a staid Mormon grandmother in a hot pink bra.  In addition, the bra is (or was) comfortable.  It and I have been together long enough that we fit.  How long will it take me to develop such a relationship with a new bra?

And that started me to thinking. Could my worn-out bra have things in common with my sins?  As I said, the bra is now uncomfortable, even painful.  It's embarrassing.  It's poking out, showing things I wish it wouldn't.

Isn't that the same with my sins?  They started out comfortable.  They were enticing.  I'd developed a relationship with them.  Now they are no longer comfortable, they are no longer enticing, and I've outgrown that relationship.

Why don't I get rid of them along with my bra?  Easier said than done.  It means going shopping for a new bra.  And maybe shopping for a new set of sins.

Joy for today:  contemplating getting rid of a bra and sins that no longer fit.