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Written by Hillary Abplanalp   
Saturday, 11 May 2013 14:56
My daughter sincerely asked me last night if our modest dress standards were arbitrary rules or if they had a purpose. I love it when children bring things up. They learn so much better when it is their idea to talk about something. I explained that outwardly dressing modestly shows and inward respect for the gift of our bodies. We don't need to be flashy or show off our bodies as objects of someone's desires unless that someone is our spouse. Our discussion went very well and I could tell she gained a testimony of this principle. It also helped me confirm to myself truths that I knew but had forgotten.

I love this quote by Emma Watson "I know everyone wants a picture of me in a mini-skirt. But that’s not me. I feel uncomfortable. I’d never go out in a mini-skirt. It’s nothing to do with protecting the Hermione image. I wouldn’t do that. Personally, I don’t actually think it’s even that sexy. What’s sexy about saying, ‘I’m here with my boobs out and a short skirt, have a look at everything I’ve got?’ My idea of sexy is that less is more."

It is interesting to me that she brought this up now because I have recently noticed a serious decline in dress standards among young women that I know to be sweet, valiant girls with generally high standards. I'm not sure how we are collectively slipping when it comes to dress standards but I figured out a few important things as I taught my daughter and she taught me.

First, we forget that the way we treat and dress our bodies can be a reflection of our level of respect and understanding of the divine gift that they are and our purposes for having them.

Second, modest dress can be arbitrary so where do we look for specifics?
For the Strength of Youth

"Immodest clothing is any clothing that is tight, sheer, or revealing in any other manner. Young women should avoid short shorts and short skirts, shirts that do not cover the stomach, and clothing that does not cover the shoulders or is low-cut in the front or the back."


These types of specifics are so helpful if we haven't gained a testimony yet or have forgotten it. Sometimes just being obedient is good enough until we can understand for ourselves why we are doing things.

We continued our discussion with attitudes. We talked about what would cause someone to want to dress immodestly. She concluded that they either want to fit in to avoid attention or they were seeking the wrong kind of attention. I thought it was interesting and true that we often dress immodestly for opposite reasons. I love children. They make things so clear for me. She is only 9 years old and she already struggles with the peer pressure of dressing immodestly. I know she gets a lot of good attention as a performer and isn't seeking the wrong kind so fitting in may have been the source of her question.

I also realized from our discussions that modest doesn't just mean covering the body, but the word modest means not extreme or flashy. Too much jewelry or a bottom covered in Rhinestones could directly contradict the intent of the word modest if we really think about its definition: The quality of being modest; freedom from vanity, boastfulness, etc.. We learn to avoid "costly apparel" but I find myself spending a lot more on stylish clothing now that I am not 60 pounds overweight. Being glad that I am healthy rather than trying to wear tight or revealing clothes to debut by new body is a difficult pitfall to avoid. Thanks to my daughter, I just realized why I need to avoid it. I'm so blessed to be a mother.

Last Updated on Saturday, 11 May 2013 15:51
 
No More Laundry! PDF Print E-mail
Written by Hillary Abplanalp   
Wednesday, 15 August 2012 17:15

People often ask me how I have time to write music with my five small children and all the other projects I'm working on including several side jobs and callings, not to mention time spent on social media.  I tell them the trick is laundry.  I don't do it.  I have found that it can easily take over the life of a stay at home mom.  I spent years trying to invent some machine that would wash and dry and sort and put away laundry, but after my husband let me know that I was being impractical, I realized an invention wasn't the answer.

One morning I was out for my morning walk and I realized that even though my kids were small, they could do amazing things!  Why can't they do laundry?  I knew they wouldn't just do it and that it had to be part of a reward system.  I came up with a plan that has now worked very well for a few years and I am ready to share it with all of you so you can escape the laundry life too!

After training my children on how to do their own laundry including starting the washer and dryer, adding soap, changing the lint, etc., we got them each a laundry basket and put their names on it.  We set up a day for each of our five children.  On the day they are assigned each child:

1. Takes their laundry basket down stairs  2. Starts the wash  3. Changes it to the dryer when they get home from school  4. Folds and puts it away after school.

If the child assigned to that specific day has completed their laundry by bed time, they get to stay up and have a "special night" for an hour with mom or dad rather than going to bed.  They get to go get ice cream or watch a show or play a game.  They pick.  Kids would do anything not to go to bed so this was the perfect incentive.  It also meant we would get one on one time with the kids at least once a week so it was a win win.  If a child does not do their laundry, which is rare, they just have extra laundry the next week and they miss their special night.

The main advantage to this system is that there is no sorting since they all have different days.  Sorting clothes for four little girls who are so close in age was no fun.  I have all my kids wash everything on cold and most of their clothes are cotton so not a lot of damage to clothes has happened. Yes, sometimes the loads are a bit small for our high capacity machines, but it's worth it!  Besides, they are also high efficiency machines so I'm doing my part, right? I have the front load washer and dryers so they can all reach without climbing up-- even the 3 year old.  I wash towels and sheets on Saturday and my husband does my laundry with his so I don't even do my own laundry and I still get my "special night" out with him!

 

 

 
Visiting Teaching On the Ark PDF Print E-mail
Written by Hillary Abplanalp   
Monday, 02 July 2012 00:48

This is a skit we found that my mom, Pam Mann, wrote many years ago for Relief Society. It's a really cute way to help sisters better understand the importance of Visiting Teaching by portraying Noah with the difficult task of trying to care for all of the animals on the ark and deciding to use the visiting teaching as a guide by allowing the animals to pair up and visit each other. The creative and cute skit teaches by poking fun at our general approaches to visiting teaching through the perspective of animals and helps give us a better perspective of the important role we have as Visiting Teachers.

 

 

noah and the ark

Last Updated on Monday, 02 July 2012 01:09
 
Worthy Music Enhances Worship PDF Print E-mail
Written by Hillary Abplanalp   
Saturday, 23 June 2012 10:42
There is such power in music. I love this link from the LDS website: Worthy Music Enhances Worship.
 
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