Memory Jar 2016

How to Create a Memory Jar!  This is an amazing way to capture the best moments throughout the year!

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It is 10:07 pm on the 29th of December 2015.

It’s like a year too late, but the idea is still relevant and kicking. So, it’s been circulating since December 2013 that we should keep a memory jar of all the good that happened to us from January 1st of the next year to the 31st of December. And it’s a pretty good idea, I think. As someone who’s trying to be more positive (to myself, mostly), I think it’s brilliant .

But as much as I would like it to be, the mason jar thing isn’t gonna work for me. For one, I only just remembered this thing, and tomorrow I’m  at work all day, and Thursday is work, then home to rush out again for New Year’s Eve service at church. Granted it’s hours apart, but still. We’re not the most organised of people, and my father, brother, and sister have no idea of the importance of time management.

Instead, I think I’ll do what I have been doing for a while now. I’ve been more keen on journalling a bit more, although not a bit more efficiently. Still, I have two completed ones, have a third in the works, and a separate one. ( I journal in themes, apparently – The three are one kind, and the fourth is another kind altogether.) Plus I got two more journals for Christmas and pretty stationery 😀

So why not use it?

Or, another idea, I could use a piggy bank instead of the jar. Saving memories instead of loose change. Same idea, different container.

It’s more about the storage than the actual task….

But I think that’s the one resolution I could manage. Little more adventurous, a little more attainable.

It’s different anyway.

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Alphonse’s Faith

“This body comes with many inconveniences. But inconveniences don’t make me miserable! There is no reason for you to pity me! My life was put back together with alchemy by my brother. If I deny myself, that would mean I’m denying my brother, along with alchemy. I believe in the potential that alchemy holds. I want to believe in it!”

As far as I could tell, this was posted by m a u s_r a t t on tumblr, reblogged by beneath the tangles, and then by me.

I love Fullmetal Alchemist, and normally would have no other reason for reblogging anything to do with the series.

Still something more lingers in Al’s words here. And it all leads back to Christianity. FMA’s protagonists openly make it known that they aren’t religious in any way. Not like the likes of Rose or anyone else in Lior, or even the Ishvallans. Granted, the brothers’ efforts to disprove the reasoning of the [near] cult level following Father Cornello had in Lior proved to be good. It revealed him to be a crook, and helped the people see the truth.

The show itself isn’t religious, although religion does have a major role. Religion is a part of society after all.

My life was put back together with alchemy by my brother. If I deny myself, that would mean I’m denying my brother, along with alchemy. I believe in the potential that alchemy holds. I want to believe in it!

I remember reading this and automatically flashed to, well, Jesus Christ. Ed is not Amestris’ Christ. Al is not Peter, John, any of the disciples. Yet his words are reminiscent of the way Christians are encouraged to think.

Al was basically dead. He was ripped from this world in an attempt to bring back his mother from Death itself. His soul was then ripped from its body and transferred into a new [metal] one. After that, he and Ed traversed Amistris finding a way  to restore him to his old body, and restoring Ed’s limbs that were taken in both processes. Basically sums up the show.

And yet, throughout the entirety of the series, manga, OVAs, series reboot that was more faithful to the manga, [with a brief period of doubt of his own identity and relationship with Ed] he faithfully believed in and followed Ed. He never blamed Ed, he thanked him for even this bit of half life. It was a gift that he would treasure forever. It was a sort of Life after all.

He never denied that the armor was his body now. He never denied that that little he got was a sacrifice from someone who was desperate to see him live. He never denied the power that allowed him to still, essentially, be alive. He will ultimately believe in it, because he experienced it first hand, and even if he hasn’t seen what he looked for, searched for, he will never stop believing in it.

As Christians, we are given a new life that is, more times than not, completely different than the one we had before. We indwell a different life, we have a different sense of being. If we deny our new selves, we deny Him, and we deny the power and sacrifice that made this possible.

But as Christians, do we want to? Is denying a change that significant even possible?

In Christ, we need to believe, we need to have faith that He can give us what we most want and need in our lives. Especially when we don’t see it ever happening.

Will we give up our belief in the one who has the power to take away, and restore, and has already proven that the potential is there ready for a witness and a vessel to be used to reveal it?

That’s it. Al had enough faith in his brother to accept his new self, his brother’s sacrifice using the power of alchemy at risk to Ed’s own life, and the power of alchemy itself, to continue believing in it, to follow Ed wherever  he went. That level of trust, man. He had enough faith that Ed could fully restore him, and pull him out of the darkness he must have felt. All the time, Ed was by his side, or working in Al’s interest.

That’s the kind of faith we need. We have a new life, through Christ’s sacrifice, for us. We witnessed and are proof of the power and sacrifice. We need to have Al’s level of faith in  Ed to continue believing in Christ, and trusting Him. Even when it gets rough. When the trials are too much. When there seems to be no end in sight.

We have to want to believe in it.

5 things ALL Singles Need to do!

GodlyDating101

There are a few things every single should do before they think about marriage. Besides, why pray for something that you aren’t preparing yourself to handle? It’s easy to lose your blessing when your character isn’t ready to maintain it. So here are five quick things to do before marriage:

1. Seek God

One drastic thing people forget to do is to seek God. The first step to finding a “godly relationship” is to first find God. We often think a relationship will build our walk with God, but we must first have a relationship with God. Dating the wrong person can also slow it down. If you aren’t growing spiritually already, then you’ll only be more distracted when someone else is in your life.

We have to first see God as number one in our lives and build our lives around our walk with Him, or else when someone…

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Racism within the races

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Racism is something that still exists in Trinidad and Tobago, and you can see it in the way our governing and opposing parties are set up. Indians on one side (majority) Africans on the other (majority), and the other less known/recognized/acknowledged following suit however they choose to.

Still, the people here do tend to break stereotypical ideals and ideas, by doing something that people of another race are known for. Could be cultural practices, social practices, religious practices, whatever. Our Colombian friend, for example, took up Indian dancing. Dunno if she’s still doing it though.

But even as we’re a melting pot of culture and a delicious callaloo of chaos that somehow seems to work, dang, as a 25 year old, I’m only now seeing the racism and disjointedness in the society!

Dred, I hardly saw race. It was just another part of life, like your name, or, your age, or hell, I dunno, your foot?

Still, it’s there. Even within the boundaries of a race there it is.

Don’t like a redskin boy/girl. They too pretty and feel they nice, but they wotless. 

Don’t marry African; Indians know how to save money

Light skin Indians need to stay away from Dark skin Indians. Darkies not good if you want a good, prosperous relationship  or Dark Skins will only try steal Light skins’ chances.

Thing so, nah

I think I knew in my head that it was a thing, but I guess I never understood it. There’s a lot about society I have yet to understand. And that’s only the case because I wasn’t raised to see things like that. It was more like, do I like you? do I trust you? do we like the same things?

But who knew I’d be influenced by what I didn’t understand or [consciously] see? I’m looking at my body and the difference in darkness on my skin. My face is the darkest, followed by my arms, my legs, my torso, my breasts. And I’m looking at myself and I’m resigned, frustrated, helpless against it because I’m in the sun more often that I would like. And with every minute in the sun, I’m feeling my skin get hotter and burn and get darker and  I sulk because it’s necessary. And my umbrella refuses to cooperate, blocking my sight and the sight of others, getting in the way of others, and just flipping out with the slightest breeze.

And I remember when my friend told me her aunt advised her to stay away from the short, black girl because I’ll only try to ride on my friend’s success.

And that I’m only considered pretty when people look at me and assume I’m mixed. As if no dark Indian girl could be pretty.

Superficially, I don’t wanna get darker because my makeup wouldn’t match. I think, going deeper than that, I hate it because like my skin, society’s waaay too dark.

My personal project on Trinidad and Tobago Sign Language

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Minimal pairs – Point of difference is in movement. WEIGH alternates hand movements up and down , while WEIGHT is produced by identical movement of both hands

Yes! This. Again.

No, I haven’t joined a class, although, given my intent to take on the personal project of analyzing  the Syntax of TTSL (dunno how though – what angles do i take?) I may just have to.

Looking back at  my undergrad thesis, and knowing full well that I may not be able to publish it on a public forum like this one,(I probably signed away my rights to do with it as I wish after submission) I’m remembering why I wanted to do this. Because, Why Not? It’s a language, so it must have elements that other languages have. Why not show it? And, since my thesis focused on proving some phonological elements  present in TTSL, just like spoken language, just like other signed languages, why not try looking at it from a syntactic view?

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Disyllabic sign – two morphemes – B handshape to T [syllable break] P handshape upward movement from upturned palm – Hold-Mov-Hold.Hold-Mov-Hold

Luckily, my old supervisor is willing to help me with it, although, I may have to show why I’m doing this on my own. Honestly, it’s because I’m curious as to how the grammatical structure of TTSL manifests itself, and how it compares to Trinidadian Standard English (TSE), and because I’m a linguist. Today I net an Indian national, who schooled  some locals about the differences (socially, linguistically, the pragmatics) between different languages found here that are from India originally. I wanted to talk about it, but alas! I know very little about the subject. Also he was fluent in Spanish! we had a brief exchange, and that alone fascinated me! And thinking about it, it also shows me that territories that are primarily Anglophone, have a very linguistically Anglocentric attitude!

Anyways, back to my project.

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Even mimetic signs are influenced by the contraints that influences other signs in TTSL

tumblr is to blame for my raised interest.

So many SLs are presented over there, and I feel left out. I wanna join in and show people that Trinidad and Tobago has one too! And it’s just as complex and important as everyone else’s languages.

A lot has been done for TTSL as of late, and I’m proud to have witnessed some of it. I just wanna do my share in doing what I do best – researching things people are unaware of and stick it in their faces at weird points in time.

But this one will have a meaningful purpose.

Also, see how I not so sneakily sneaked in  three phonological elements of TTSL? Minimal pairing/grouping, syllables, and constraints that order the production of signs in meaningful ways – OT.  You see these in spoken and signed languages.