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Monthly Archives: December 2007

Singing at Christmas

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Music is my favorite part of Christmas. I love singing carols and performing for people. Ever since my parents took us to sing at rest homes and for ward Christmas parties, I have felt that the season would be incomplete having the chance to brighten someone’s day by presenting music. In the early 90’s, I sang and acted in Hale Center Theater’s “A Christmas Carol.” For the past five years, my singing group Harmonix has performed at ward parties and sacrament meetings, as well as at the Little America Hotel. Robin and I have collaborated on writing three Christmas sacrament meeting programs in our ward over the past few years, and I’ve sung with the choir for many years. Needless to say, I just love performing Christmas music. It’s a real joy!

Last year and this year, as a bishopric we went caroling to all the homes in  our ward boundaries. We ring the doorbell, sing a carol, hand the resident a card, wish them a Merry Christmas and then we go on our way. It’s funny to see the looks on people’s faces — some are delighted, some are a little uncomfortable (i.e. “what are these three unfamiliar men doing singing to me on my doorstep”) but very few refuse to open the door. We had one man who cut us off right at “Let earth receive…” and said he’d prefer not to listen. At another home, someone peeked through the window shades but never answered the door. Other than that, everyone opened the door and listened to our Christmas carol. It was a wonderful way to share the spirit of the season. It took us about six hours (spread over three sessions on three separate days) to get to everyone, but it was well worth the time. I love spreading Christmas cheer. What other time could you have three grown men sing on people’s front porches and not be viewed as complete lunatics?!

Sadly, on the morning of Christmas Eve, I woke up with a pretty serious case of laryngitis and couldn’t sing a note until two days after Christmas. Oh well, I’ve had plenty of opportunities to sing this season. And I’m not done yet. My friends and I are singing in a sacrament meeting on Sunday, as well as at “First Night” on Monday at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building at 8:15. We’re really excited to do our show in that incredible venue.

 
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Posted by on December 28, 2007 in Uncategorized

 

Merry Christmas from the Lamberts

Here’s our family Christmas letter and picture for 2007. Enjoy!

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2007 is almost over, and the Andrew and Robin Lambert family is doing great! Here’s a quick update on us! The most important event of the year occurred on October 11, 2007 — the birth of our son James Andrew Lambert. The last two months have been wonderful and challenging, and we’re so thrilled to have baby James become a part of our lives.

Lily turned three in May and is just adorable. She’s quite precocious and always keeps us smiling and laughing with her cute comments and sweet demeanor. Six-year-old Brianna is in the first grade and loves to color and play with “My Little Ponies.” She’s a natural performer and we’re thinking of signing her up for Sunshine Generation in January. Parley, who was baptized in July, is a very intelligent 3rd grader who inherited his father’s tendency to talk too much in class. He gets a kick out of putting Legos together and assembling Transformers, and he loves playing computer games. He’s now on a Junior Jazz basketball team and really enjoys it.

We took some great vacations to Las Vegas, Midway, the beautiful Oregon Coast, East Canyon Resort and Bear Lake. Next year we’re thinking about visiting the Grand Canyon! Robin and I also took a Caribbean cruise to Miami, Key West and Cozumel, Mexico to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversarym. I had the opportunity to visit Houston (TX), Springfield (MO), Cedar Rapids (IA), Birmingham (AL), Philadelphia (PA) and Orlando and Tallahassee (FL) on business trips this year. Add to that scout camps and youth conference, and you can see it was a busy travel year.

Robin spends her time as a full-time mother, feeding the baby, caring for the kids, making meals, feeding the baby, reading stories, making our home more comfortable and feeding the baby! She does a great job and we’re all blessed to have her in our lives. She was recently called as an Activity Days leader and works with the 9 year old girls in our ward.

I finished my MBA from the University of Utah in July and during my two-year program I learned a great deal and made some wonderful friendships. My job at Unishippers continues to be challenging and enjoyable, although I’m beginning to look for ways to more fully utilize my education to better support my growing family. My service as a counselor in the bishopric continues to be time-consuming but very rewarding.

I continue to sing with my acapella quintet “Harmonix” to satisfy my performing bug. It’s great to have an excuse to get together with these four friends of mine from high school and sing for ward parties and sacrament meetings. We have been invited to sing at the “First Night” celebration in downtown Salt Lake this year. On New Year’s Eve we’ll be performing in the Empire Room of the Joseph Smith Memorial Building from 8:15 to 9:00. If you’re in the area that night, stop by for a listen!

Finally, both Robin and I started blogs a few months ago, and we have been fairly actively posting updates, pictures, videos, etc. If you’re interested, check in on us from time to time. And feel free to post a comment or two if you want — we’d love to hear from you!

http://robinbl.wordpress.com/
https://andrewalma.wordpress.com/

Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

The Lamberts

 
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Posted by on December 20, 2007 in Uncategorized

 

Follow-up to “Things I’m Supposed to Do”

Okay, so I wrote my last post as an expression of my thoughts after reading a blog entry from Kristy, a friend of mine who wrote a list of things she’s chosen not to do. She did it in response to a perception that some in the blogosphere might have that she has it all together — that’s she’s a superwoman. She rightly concludes that a blog allows us to show only certain aspects of ourselves and, by definition, is two-dimensional.

Anyway, I decided to do a new post in response to the comments I got on my last post. (By the way, 5 responses is quite a few, especially lately when few people have been posting comments on anything I’ve posted — probably since most of my posts lately have been somewhat trivial. I guess I need to write more controversial stuff to elicit responses!)

First, let me say I appreciate the comments. Mom, sorry I don’t read the Reader’s Digest like I should. Kira, I agree that taking anything to the extreme is not a good idea and that in the end, we should be focusing on the positive things that make us the most happy. Robin, I agree that everyone is different and it’s important to always remember that.

As for your comments Shannon, I appreciate your candor and apologize if I came across as self righteous in any way. My list was meant to be somewhat tongue-in-cheek (grinding wheat, etc.) and certainly was not comprehensive! So many, many more things (and more substantial things) could have been added to the list. I just chose not to air all of my dirty laundry on the blog! 🙂

In any case, my intention was NOT to make anyone feel uncomfortable. I appreciate your insight that being an overacheiver is equally as precarious to proper life balance as being lazy. I recognize it’s important to put my wife and children at the TOP of my priority list — above church callings, work, school, etc. They are the most important and everything else should come second. I guess my reason for putting up that post was to acknowledge to myself that while there are a million things I COULD and SHOULD be doing, it is absolutely impossible to do all of them. The post was my way of expressing my recognition that choices must be made between GOOD things. And while that has been difficult for me to accept, I am coming to understand that that’s okay. 

I really liked Elder Dallin H. Oaks talk on the subject during the October 2007 General Conference. His remarks, entitled Good, Better, Best, are right on the mark.

Thanks again for the discussion. It’s always interesting to see others’ perspectives.

 
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Posted by on December 16, 2007 in Spirituality

 

Things I’m Supposed to Do

Recently, there has been much discussion on the blogs I read about women struggling to be a “Supermom” or “Wonder Woman.” (Incidentally, I’m the only man I know personally who regularly posts to a blog; what’s up with that? I’m just as busy as other guys; I guess I just like to express my thoughts more than most?)

Anyway, I think it’s a healthy discussion to have with yourself and others. What can I reasonably do while preserving my sanity and not become frazzled?

I recently finished one of the busiest seasons of my life in which I was working full-time (45 hours per week) and earning a master’s degree (15-20 hours per week), while trying to manage a demanding church calling (10-15 hours per week), help raise three small children, exercise daily (physically and spiritually) and be a good husband, brother, son, friend, blogger, etc. It was truly overwhelming, but somehow I was able to get through it. I truly believe the Lord blessed me for my sacrifices of time and helped me do more with the remaining time I had. Now that I have 15-20 hours more per week, I’m trying to fill it with meaningful activities. The Church offers many suggestions on things we should or could do — enough to fill several lifetimes! But of course, the leaders don’t expect that. However, I think that since we hear so much in our meetings about all the things that we SHOULD be doing (and everything seems to have an equal weight of importance — i.e. sharing the gospel, reading, praying, FHE, temple work, etc.) it can be easy to get discouraged.

Try as I might, there are still many things that I’m supposed to do that I just don’t do right now. Blame it on lack of time, lack of motivation, or anything else, here are a few things that I just don’t do right now:

  • I don’t write to missionaries. At least, not more than once per mission for the boys I taught in scouts. 
  • I don’t attend every scout meeting that I could. I figure I attend enough meetings being in the bishopric.
  • I don’t go to the temple once a week as some people do. I’m lucky to get there once a month.
  • I don’t do genealogical research. I know what PAF is, but I’ve never really used it — someday…
  • I don’t read a lot of magazines. The Ensign is one that doesn’t get as much attention as it should. Reader’s Digest comes faithfully every month, but I yet to read more than a few jokes in it. My brother and his wife got us a year-long subscription to the National Geographic and I never read it, although I looked at the pictures once or twice. 🙂
  • I don’t grind wheat for bread and regularly rotate my food storage. Heck, I didn’t even have any real food storage until just a few weeks ago when I made a few trips to Costco. Still need more. Gotta be prepared for Armageddon!

I could feel guilty about this list, but I’m choosing not to do so. I’m simply acknowledging it and resolving to “stand a little taller” while not “running faster than I have strength.” And while some think it’s oppressive to be involved in a religion that requires so much of its people, I find it inspiring. No, I can’t do everything. But I can reach higher and stretch myself in ways that I wouldn’t have done otherwise. And as long as I leave the guilt behind and view my religious duties as a blessing instead of a burden, I will be a better man for it.

 
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Posted by on December 13, 2007 in Spirituality

 

Smiling Baby James

Isn’t he adorable?

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2007 in Family

 

Sammy Sophomore – Christmas Fun

Okay, since we’re now into December and, thanks to the snow, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, I thought you might enjoy watching this short “Sammy Sophomore” video that we created back in 1992 when I was involved in student government at Hillcrest. I recently converted the VHS tape to DVD as part of my goal to digitize everything I own. It’ll come in handy to have all my memories preserved on a massive hard drive that I can grab when Amageddon begins… 🙂 As my brother Matt calls it — my “flee kit.”

 
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Posted by on December 3, 2007 in Uncategorized