Thinking About Thursdays: 8 September 2016


How can it be September already?  This year has just flown by for me.  September is my birthday month.  Birthdays are funny, should they be a big deal?  At our house we are pretty lame about our birthdays, well at least Clarke and I are, the kids of course you make a big deal.

In fact, speaking of big deal birthdays, we are quickly creeping towards the biggest birthday for Miss Mia!  We have just under two-months until Mia hits the big ONE YEAR!  A) that is crazy that we will have a one year old, and B) the first birthday is a BIG DEAL in Marshallese culture.  Historically high infant mortality rates meant that making it to the first birthday was something to really celebrate.  The first birthday is called a Kemem (kay-mem) and we plan to do our best to do it justice.  Being the slow-to-complete-tasks person that I am, if I don’t start thinking about it now, it’s not going to happen.

So here is a little of what’s on my mind this week……

  • Kemem.  I found this lovely article about the Marshallese community in Arkansas (yes, there is a large population of Island people, landlocked nearly in the middle of the USA!).  Watch the video to get a taste of what the Kemem involves.  We were lucky enough to get to see a Kekem while we were in Majuro adopting Mia.  On the day that you adopt you have a celebration dinner that night with your birth family.  It was the first birthday of the daughter of one of the Central Adoption Authority employees that same day, so they combined them.  On the one had, no one told us this was happening and we pretty much paid for the food for the Kemem, ha!  But on the other hand, getting first-hand experience at what a Kemem involves is priceless of us, so win-win, right!  Getting to excited to celebrate our gorgeous girl!


This is not Mia. This is the Kemem we got to see while we were in The Marshall Islands

  • Plastic.  It’s a problem.  What can you do about it this week?

  • Brock Turner was released from prison this week after serving only half of his 6-month sentence for sexual assault on an unconscious woman.  Yana Mazurkevich created a disturbing and thought provoking photo series to bring awareness to sexual assault called, It Happens.

  • Failure is an Option.  If you don’t listen to the TED Radio Hour from NPR, you should.  I listen to it regularly on Stitcher Radio.  This episode about Failure was really captivating to me.  Listen to it.

  • David Sneddon.  Is he really still alive in North Korea?  This is huge if he is.  I actually knew David in University.  He and I were partners in Folk Dance and I danced with his sister-in-law on Dancers Company at BYU.  Clarke, my Dad, and I hiked Tiger Leaping Gorge, the place where he was last known to be, about a year after he disappeared.  It was so strange to hike the very trail and wonder what happened to him.  I hope for his family that this news eventually turns into something happy.

So, there you go.  Just a few of the things I’m thinking about this week.  What’s on your mind.  Comment below, or tell me on Instagram.






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