By Study and Also By Faith

An LDS (Mormon) blog representing a search for knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Lessons Learned or Not

What are some lessons/skills you wish you had learned when younger or would like to learn now?

What are some lessons/skills you did learn and are very glad you did?

I wish I had been able to take piano lessons, but my brother and I did get accordian lessons so I can read music and play a keyboard. And now I have a piano and can practice.

I had Spanish classes off and on in school, but let it get rusty. Now there are more people around me that I can practice on, so I am trying to brush up my skills enough to try some conversations.

I learned lots of homemaking skills (sewing, cooking, cleaning, etc.) for which I am most thankful. I learned basic good manners and took business courses in high school. I've had a couple of computer classes (Word, Excel), but wish I knew more. Still, I can figure a lot out with the help of a friend or a book or an online site.

There are online sites that can help with cooking, sewing, computers, language, and all sorts of things. It seems like a person could at least make a start on learning these things with online lessons, books, CDs/DVDs, and then get help from a friend on occasion when hitting a snag.

I really wish I had learned to discipline my mind to think in a more orderly way. I wish they had offered Latin in high school. I wish I'd payed more attention in composition classes, learning to write essays.

I would like to learn a martial art, for the exercise and discipline as well as for self-defense. My dad taught us to shoot pistols and rifles when kids, plus I had a class in archery and riflery in college, but I would like to take lessons in all that and brush up my skills. I'm not interested in hunting particularly--I would just like to be able to handle weapons safely and do target shooting.

I'll probably think of more later! Tell me about you.

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10 Comments:

Blogger s'mee said...

We grew up rather financially poor, which afforded my siblings and self with all kinds of terrfic lessons. We learned to craft, sew, make patterns, and to find worth in another's cast off. We can go to the dollar store and find ways to turn $20.00 into $2,000 profit. We learned what to say to someone who was different and what not to ask. We learned to work. We learned to deep clean, organize, and prioritize. We learned to make friends quickly and say goodbye quickly as well. We learned etticate and high manners "just in case", we were taught to be gracious and giving, knowing someone is always above us and below us in circumstances.

I wish I had kept in my studies of French, which at one time I was terrificly good at, now? yikes. I regret not sticking with music, piano, recorder, ukulele, guitar, etc, they too have fled for more loyal companions. I longed to go to art school, perhaps that can still come. Photography, journaling, reading more, and doing something each day that lends itself to my personal-physical-emotional-spiritual growth would be nice things to have developed further.

All is not lost for I know I have time! Perhaps not now, not here, but I will learn, eventually, all that I desire to know.

12:03 PM  
Blogger Mary A said...

Ah, s'mee! I knew you were a kindred spirit! I came back to add that I want to do more with drawing and sketching (I had an art class in college and did well at it) and also photography, which I did some work in as a 4-H project. I learned a lot doing 4-H projects. On my own, in my family, I learned to raise a steer and sell it for money to start a savings account, plus we had horses, chickens, and rabbits (not to mention outdoor, or "barn", cats and a dog. When I was married, we had a herd of registered Angus, plus raised wheat and alfalfa. Mom taught me a lot about gardening and canning food. It's always a blessing to have learned lots when we are kids, isn't it? All sorts of things prove useful later in life.

12:44 PM  
Blogger David B. said...

Accordion lessons, eh? That was my first instrument! My brother and I shared an accordion, and we took lessons for about 5 years (started at age 7). My accordian lessons made my left arm stronger than my right arm (I am naturally a righty). So when it came time to learn how to dribble a basketball, I did it left-handed, since it was my stronger arm.

Later I took some piano and voice lessons as well. My kids have studied the recorder in elementary school. I decided to get everyone in the family a recorder, so we could all play together. I found that I can play most any tune any tune on the recorder, that I can whistle to.

My biggest problem in college was deciding what to study. Nearly every class I took held something of interest for me. Being a "professional student" would have suited me well, if time and resources would have allowed. I finally decided on something rather utilitarian (Business).

Still, I would have loved to study geology, astronomy, music history, writing, and literature.

One of these days, I might really get serious about music. I would love to have some more voice training, and brush up on my music theory. I would like to try out for the Tabernacle Choir someday. The process would be worthwhile, even if I never made it into the choir.

I love learning - just for its own sake. One thing I am glad of is that we have all of eternity to explore those horizons which are just not mortally possibile for us to reach in the here and now.

So who knows, one-day maybe I'll see you in a Celestial Compositions class!

8:02 PM  
Anonymous Pop said...

Ok Mary, you're probably going to want to horse whip me given your list.
1. I took ten years of piano and 3 years of organ and haven't touched a keyboard for forty years.
2. At age 18 I was fluent in Latin even if there weren't too many others to converse with. The Latin has been keeping the piano company for the last forty years.

I can cook (rather well I might add), sew and basicly take care of my own needs along those lines. I do, however, detest doing laundry although I do enjoy doing ironing.

I love to read, but as everyone can see I'm not much of a writer. It's probably something that I should work on if I can motivate myself.

I to wish I had had more discipline at a younger age. I'd have done much better in college if I had just cooled it. it's not too wise to get into it with a professor over politics when said professor has the grade book. What's that saying, "We grow too soon old and too late wise."

I've been blessed in that I've pretty much been able to do the things that I wanted to do to one extent or another. Would I have liked to do some of them more or longer, sure, I'm just as greedy as the next one.

I used to shoot well, but haven't done any shooting for a while. I'm pretty good with a fishing rod.

Most of my time now is spent on Family History and extraction work. That is pretty much a fulltime job.

7:53 AM  
Anonymous Barb said...

This may get a little personal but I hope not to the point where you feel it is inappropriate. I did not get much in the way of homemaking skills growing up. I played a lot of sports and was a fairly accomplished fast-pitch softball pitcher and probably could have played in college as I was given an offer. That is a source of a lot of great memories. My dad was really good at breaking certain elements of sports into fundementals and our teams were known for our great base running skills and also our skills in throwing. However, without going into much details, I recieved a lot of abusive treatment when being taught how to clean or do other independent tasks. I want to state clearly that my mom was not the abusive person here. So I do wish that I knew homemaking skills. I think that I also have learning disabilites that may interfere there. In the school arena, I am so glad that I took Spanish although I did not take my first year until I was a Junior. I had scored very low in my high school exam and was placed in a vocational education rather than a College Prep track. Then, teachers noticed my abilities in some areas and I was moved up to the College Prep track. I was shocked when my Biology teacher even wanted to move me up to honors Biology. I think that it was my success in Spanish that really meant the most to me as I could see other people who were intelligent who struggled in this course and I did extremely well. That is not to say that I am fluent or anything although native speakers have complimented me at times on my feeble efforts to communicate with them. I have forgotten much, but still remain glad that it was in there at one time. I had a phobia that I was mentally retarded in part due to my low entrance exam scores and also a brief test in Sociology where we were supposed to do anagrams on the makes of car. If you scored a certain level, you were considered average or above. I scored lower and we were told to render it invalid, but it worried me. I remember in my third semester of College after receiving that I was worried when my Intro. to Special Ed class for educators was going to show us an I.Q. test. I was afraid that I might be found out. It turns out that he did not really adminster it, but rather showed us each one sample of it a piece like half a car and you had to say it was a car. I did eventually get to the point where I do not believe that I am retarded. My desire to always appear smart kept me from taking classes that would have been beneficial such as American Literature and British Literature. I did take courses in short stories and also Novel, but I feel that I missed out on a huge chunk. I also never took Chemistry. In college, I would have liked to have taken Critical Reasoning and also Philosophy. I am able to have much time for independent study now. I am grateful for opportunities to learn. I appreciate those areas where I have strengths and admire in others strengths that I do not possess. I would have liked to have taken a creative writing course. I enrolled in the forum at Nauvoo and that has been enjoyable. Down the road, I may take noncredit courses from BYU in magazing writing and also creative writing. I did take some journalism classes at the University and want to build from there. I hope that this does not seem like a sad tale of woe. On the contrary, for it is due to my desire to appear smart, that I developed good study skills that served me well. In addition, it has given me much pause for thought in considering what it really means to be intelligent. I believe that we are all intelligent in our own way and are all talented in our own way. It is fun to share with others and grow from what they contribute.

2:20 PM  
Blogger Mary A said...

Barb, I think you don't just appear smart--you are smart! But I know what you mean about worrying about all kinds of things when you're growing up--like what the tests you took really mean, etc. You have lots of interests and I think that is one sign of intelligence. Finding websites on the internet that have writings about your interests would be a way to work on it a little until you have a chance to take a course of some type--either online or correspondence or whatever is convenient for you. But you are like me, with a lot of interests, and if we can just encourage ourselves to work on at least some of our favorites, it will do us good!

David, thank you for sharing your interests, too. Let's hear it for accordian players!!! Voice is something I would like to study a bit, too. You said something that resonates with me--that you love learning for its own sake. I think that is how I feel, and I think s'mee and Barb, too. I believe that God meant for us to like learning of all kinds and wanted us to find joy in increasing our knowledge.

2:35 PM  
Anonymous Barb said...

Thank you, Mary. I have been fortunate to have people who have encouraged me in my studies. I feel bad for those who never realize that they have potential in something valued by society whether it is in the classroom or in arts or elsewhere. I am glad that we have opportunities to become actualized in our society rather than just having to survive by foraging for food and hunting. We are so blessed to have some leisure time.

I did go painting with my dad from an early age as that was a second job of his. I went with him until he retired when I was in my early twenties. I mainly was a gopher and helped carry and set up scaffolding.

I did clean classrooms after school in high school to get money taken off of my tuition. I would hate it when I would get done though and see a dust bunny on the floor!

More in a moment. :)

7:27 PM  
Anonymous Barb said...

Well, I was going to post in a moment, but the site was being updated. :)

I went to a Homemaking meeting once where a gentlemen was speaking about gardening. I do not remember much if any of what he said. I remember feeling the Holy Spirit very strongly. I have wondered if there was a deeper meaning in all of this. I am not sure if I have any special gift for gardening. I wonder if I have a hidden talent though. My grandma had the best garden on her farm with Black Diamond watermelon, cabbages, strawberries and more. Some day I hope to find out! :)

8:22 PM  
Blogger Titus Todd said...

I don't have many regrets from my younger days that I had much power over. My dad made such a fuss over money that I didn't ever ask to do much (that cost money) such as sports or music lessons (I did take piano lessons that my mother paid for). I'm grateful my mom did get me into some summer arts classes at the local college when I was young (drawing and pottery).

I always wanted to learn the guitar and hope to someday take lessons. My oldest son wants to learn so maybe we'll take some lessons together. I think there might be some musical genes somewhere in our DNA so I hope it surfaces with one of my kids. My grandmother played the drums and sax in a band that was popular (in Europe in the 1930s).

I should have stuck with piano lessons but school got me too busy so I ended up dropping them and didn't keep practicing. Now I don't have a piano and wish I could practice some.

My mom's native language is French and I really wish she could have taught me but my dad would not allow it. He didn't want to be left out of the conversation.

These days I don't do much of what I enjoy. I like to draw and have always wanted to learn to paint (watercolor and oils). My Grand Uncle was a painter in Europe - A kind Nauvoodle in The Netherlands even found a painting of his being auctioned for a consider amount of money (on e-bay). I also enjoy photography and would like to further my skills in it. I used to read a lot and miss it.

These days with two jobs and family I just don't find the time to enjoy much of what I like to do. The only thing I really get in is genealogy work.

10:04 AM  
Blogger chronicler said...

s'mee was good at illustrating the practical side of learning we had when we were young. We also learned industriousness. I find that that has been a great asset to have in allowing me to work independently and feel good about my performance.

However, to take this in a totally different place, the most important thing I learned is who I am and why I am here. My tutelage began as a small child prior to being a member of the church. I would have spiritual experiences that confirmed there was a higher power in my life. When I was taught the gospel at age twelve it confirmed the confusion I had felt while attending various sects I had been to while younger. I learned that listening to the spirit was the most important part of my life. I also learned that intellectualizing things of the spirit, no matter how benign your critical thinking path takes you, replaced the spiritual with teachings of man, and how empty that felt.
I've also learned about how far a rock thrown into a pond carries the ripple, and that our actions can affect people we don't even know.

Thank you Mary for the forum!

7:34 AM  

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