Thursday, July 31, 2008

Week 1: Paperwork


It's been one week since we submitted our application to our adoption agency. We received confirmation today from the agency that we have been accepted. When we applied last week, we learned the agency is currently representing 18 families and they only take 20 at a time, so we were hoping two more families wouldn't beat us to the punch and it looks like that didn't happen.

For the past week, we've been cruising through the paperwork. I've finished all my personal essays and Justin is working on his. We have a doctor's appointment set up for next week. I was worried that we'd have to request new copies of our birth and marriage certificates, since I had absolutely no clue where they were or if we were even in possession of some of them. But we looked for a minute in the basement and found a file with everything in it. I was amazed. My friend at work, Jamie, said it's a sign that we are meant to get on this list quickly because there will be a baby for us soon. I hope so!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I Proposed

Is it fair to say that now I know what it's like when a man proposes? The vulnerability. The sweaty palms. The hours of preparation. Practicing the conversation over and over and over again. Waiting for the perfect day and the right moment. And finally, popping the question--will you consider adding adoption benefits to our current company sponsored benefits plan? Of course, I got to ask my question in a letter format, which is probably easier. How many guys wished they could write a "check-yes-or-no" note with a marriage proposal in it? But the bad thing is, I won't get an answer back right away (or get to see any body language that might give me a clue). The woman in Human Resources who is helping me facilitate this was very excited for me and enthusiastic, but ultimately, it's really not her call. I am hoping she's a barometer for the VP. I kept thinking I was like Esther going before the king. Except not nearly as serious. And it's kind of a blasphemous thought. So I'll stick with the guy proposing comparison.

Anyway, I don't know when I will hear anything, but as soon as I do, I'll post it. Keep your fingers crossed!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Happy Birthday, Julie and Stephanie!


Today is my sister Julie’s 30th birthday, and a week ago my sister Stephanie turned 35. I am now officially the only kid in my family still in my twenties. I better savor it.

In honor of my sisters, I am posting two cute pictures from our childhood and writing things I love about them.

So, Stephanie, though a little late (I didn’t think of it until today), in honor of your 35 years upon this earth, here are 35 things I love about you!

Stephanie - 9; Lara - 18 months

  1. You are a fabulous cook and make the best: cinnamon rolls, apple pie, breakfast casserole and more.

  2. You let me be the “spy” when you were dating and I would tell you what your date was wearing when he came to the door so you’d know what to wear (except I messed up!).

  3. You would let me brush your hair.

  4. You are such a fun and wonderful mother.

  5. You gave me a cookie when my Brad made me cry.

  6. You laid claim to the rocking chair in the family room and used the heck out of that thing! I’m surprised you don’t still have it.

  7. You were my “second mom” and always took care of me.

  8. You have an aversion to feet, making it very fun to put bare feet on you (although this has waned a bit since you got married).

  9. You help yourself to my toiletries and cosmetics when visiting and let me do the same at your house.

  10. You are so generous to always host family when anyone comes to Salt Lake.

  11. You can make anything out of anything. When I think the fridge and pantry are empty and there is nothing to eat, you’ll whip up a delicious meal for six using only flour, tarragon, and raw spaghetti noodles. You’re that good.

  12. You were the Tetris Queen back in the day.

  13. You loved the Poison song “Talk Dirty to Me” before you really knew what it meant.

  14. You always dated the cutest boys and I had a little sister crush on all of them—Joel, Casey, John, Boyd, and, the best one ever, Jeff.

  15. You let me stay for a few days with you when you were living in a basement apartment at Ricks College. I’m sure I was so obnoxious the whole time but I had a blast.

  16. You know all the words to all the songs of High School Musical.

  17. You have your kids call to leave cute messages on the answering machine and have them make the sweetest valentines to send in the mail to us all.

  18. You sacrificed a lot and got your RN!

  19. You’d write me my own letters while you were on your mission.

  20. You have a great sense of adventure and you’re always up for anything.

  21. You’re not nearly as prudish as one might think!

  22. You’ve worked awful night shifts for years so you could be home with your kids during the day.

  23. Even though three of your kids share the same birthday, you always make three different cakes and treat them all very special.

  24. You taught me how to navigate the challenges of changing little boys’ diapers.

  25. You click when you laugh.

  26. You make special trips up (even very short trips) for important occasions like my graduation.

  27. You always have the cutest clothes and are willing to share your shopping secrets.

  28. When I visit, you’ll stay up into the wee hours of the morning every night talking and gossiping and having fun.

  29. You speak Spanish.

  30. You stole the wedding dress pattern I had picked out as a kid for years, but it was for the best because I love the dress I ended up with.

  31. Yours was the first pregnant belly I ever touched.

  32. By puking up vegetables you were forced to eat, you paved the way for the rest of us to never have to eat anything we really didn’t like.

  33. You’re everyone’s favorite.

  34. By performing in Brigadoon, you helped me discover my inner thespian.

  35. You’re a great example with a heart of gold and sense of humor to match and no one could ask for a better biggest sister.

Julie—you are the big 3-0 today. No way are you mature enough for that! j/k. In lamentation celebration of this notable event, here are 30 things I love about you!

Julie -4 1/2; Lara - 15 months

  1. You created the “stinker station” for us when we shared the bathroom.

  2. You sometimes let me borrow your clothes and never killed me for the times I didn’t ask.

  3. You said that if Mom and Dad ever got divorced, you’d go wherever I went.

  4. You let me tag along with you and your friends when you’d play nightgames in the street.

  5. You showed me how to use…a certain feminine product.

  6. You’re a returned missionary.

  7. Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace inspired you to go on a mission.

  8. You’d tell me all your high school drama with your friends and boyfriends so I could live vicariously through you.

  9. You drove me up to West Yellowstone just for an ice cream cone from the best ice cream shop in the world.

  10. You let me drive your car while you were on your mission (sorry a stupid driver smashed into it!)

  11. You have such knowledge about the gospel along with your strong testimony and you’re the one I bounce “intellectual” gospel questions off of.

  12. When we divided our room into sides, you’d let me cross onto your side so I could get to my clothes in the closet.

  13. You introduced me to Days of Our Lives and The Babysitters Club.

  14. You and I would melt watching John Stamos on the music video for “Kokomo.”

  15. You didn’t tell Mom and Dad when I would blame bad things on the neighbor.

  16. You’d play Barbies with me.

  17. You orchestrated a sting campaign to convince Mom and Dad to take us to Hawaii. (And it worked!)

  18. You’d tell Mom I practiced the piano even when I didn’t.

  19. You’re a great mother to Camden. You even blend his food, and his sign language is so cute.

  20. You’re a great dog-mom to Marley.

  21. You taught me naughty words (or your friends did).

  22. You learned to pee standing up with me so we could watch “Smurfs.”

  23. You are very dedicated and have done so many great things with your life—living on your own for awhile, serving a mission, working full-time+ while getting your degree and being the R.S. president, living in all kinds of fun places and ripping your jeans on Slains Castle. You rock!

  24. You prevented me from cracking my head on the fireplace by putting your hand in the way and bashed your finger.

  25. You gave me your old bike and painted it for me.

  26. You are a warrior and get really passionate about things you believe in.

  27. You married a California boy.

  28. We share a long-lasting love for Chris LeDoux.

  29. You click when you laugh.

  30. You are a fun sister and I can’t imagine growing up without sharing, fighting, and bonding with you.
Happy Birthday, Stephanie and Julie. I love you both.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Week 0: Application Submitted



We sealed the envelope and put our application for the adoption agency in the mail today. We met our caseworker, Claire, last week and have already had good contact with her and have a jump start on our paperwork. Since today made it official, I bought two baby outfits--one boy and one girl--and wrapped them up for Justin when he gets home from work. I almost cried right there in the store. I've longingly passed the baby section of stores yearning for the time when I would be shopping for my baby. Today it happened and I almost lost it! Silly Lara.

We are going to cruise through the paperwork as fast as humanly possible. My goal is to be on the waiting list by the first week of September. Claire says it's possible if we move fast. There is no one in front of us waiting for a home study, so when we are ready, so is she.

I can't believe this is really happening! I am so excited!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Art of Procrastination

Yesterday: We are back from our weekend away and the Sabbath is over. I need to mow the lawn. Oh, it can wait one day. And besides, I didn't get home from work until 7:00 p.m. I have other things to do like cleaning up a messy kitchen, tending to my vegetable garden, feeding and watering the birds, unpacking smoky camping clothes, laundering said smoky clothes, etc. Oh, Justin's home! Let me hang out with him a bit, then we'll see what happens.

By bed time, at least the starving and parched birds have been taken care of.

Today: I stayed late at work yesterday, I can leave a bit early today and go to the product store. Justin has been nagging me to do that for a week. Wow, I'm actually home before 6:00. I usually don't even leave work until then. I have so much time! Should I mow the lawn? It's starting to rain. Besides, I'm feeling inspired to work on my novel a bit and it's critical I work with that motivation at this point. Is Justin's laptop around anywhere? I think I'll stay more focused if I write on that, away from the internet. Hmmm, can't find it. Maybe I could bring our extra computer upstairs. I go to our storage room and move boxes around until I find it. Here's the CPU. I'll just set it out here in the middle of the hallway. I better check to see if I can find all the parts and cords before taking it upstairs. Can't find them. Maybe I'll take up my regular "internet" computer. Wait, that's a hassle. Stop being a baby and just type on this one. But I may as well check my blog first to see if there are any comments or to see if anyone has updated their blog. Oh, look at all my friends from high school I've found. Maybe I should drop a line.

It's 7:30 and I'm still on blogspot. Maybe I should get something to eat. I'll make chocolate milk, that's a good dinner. Eek, I think the milk is bad.

And, damn. It's stopped raining.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

ABC Tag

ABC Tag
A - Attached or Single: Attached
B - Best Friend(s): Other than my family, I’ve got my work girls—Jamie, Tisa, and Jessica (and Meagan who is no longer a work girl); my friends Jason and Kami, and I’ll always consider my girlhood BFFs, Vanessa and Maria
C - Cake or Pie: Cake. Cake that is not white.
D - Day of Choice: Wednesday. I was born on a Wednesday. That makes it the best day!
E - Essential Item: Hand lotion and a hair tie. And my debit card.
F - Favorite Color(s): Green, red, and purple
G - Gummy Bears or Worms: Worms. Interesting seeing that I HATE real worms.
H - Hometown: Idaho Falls
I - Indulgence(s): junk food, video games, naps, and visits to my hair salon (although that’s become more of a regular necessity than an indulgence!)
J - January or July: July. We’ve got Independence Day, sunshine, and summer!
K - Kids: 0
L - Life is incomplete without: balmy summer evenings
M - Marriage Date: June 8, 2001
N - Number of Siblings: 2 brothers, 2 sisters
O - Oranges or Apples: Oranges
P- Phobias or Fears: It’s a secret I won’t tell because meanies exploit it. If you know it, I trust you.
Q - Quote: “What a wonderful bird is the pelican. His beak can hold more than his belly can. He can hold enough in his beak to last for a week. What a wonderful bird is the pelican!”
R- Ring size: My wedding ring finger is 4.75. For Maria’s note that 95% of the time it’s the same as your shoe size, I think that’s cool, but tricky. Which finger? I’d never heard that all the years I worked in jewelry. But with each finger being a different size, it’s bound to be true for at least one of them!
S - Season: Autum. Love the smell and the weather and the fact that birthday is in it.
T- Tag a Friend: Anyone who wants to
U - Unknown fact about me: I brush my teeth in warm water (thanks, Dad!)
V - Very favorite stores: Michael’s, Kohl’s, Pier 49, Home Depot
W - Worst Habit: Being a slob
X-ray or Ultrasound: I don’t know. In either case you end up with weird things on you (either heavy sand bags to prevent radiation or gooey cold gel). I’d probably say the X ray.
Y - Your Favorite Food(s): Pollo fundido, corned beef, ice cream
Z- Zodiac: Libra. And I totally fit it!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Sound of Silence

Just a quick update to say that nothing more has happened at work. I replied to the CMO's email and apologized for putting him in a position he was unprepared for and nicely asked for his help. But again, nothing. No one has talked to me at all. So I am planning on doing everything I was planning on doing anyway.

We are meeting with a caseworker from a local agency this Friday to see if like this agency. I'm excited for that.

This past weekend, I went to The Wizard of Oz with some friends. It was a dinner theater and every fifteen minutes during dinner the "Oreo" witches guard green guys came out and paraded around the stage with ominous music playing. After about the fifth time of this happening, we just got the giggles. It seemed so funny and pointless. The show was good. The actors were all (well, mostly) very talented with lovely voices. We found it comical that during the performance, shots of the movie were used as a "set". Like the tornado scene. Or when Dorothy and gang go before the wizard. Except in that scene the voice of the wizard (a live performer) didn't match up with the movements on the movie. We got a kick out of that. But it was a very fun night. Thanks, J.Clark and Lindsey for the fabulous company!

On Sunday, we said goodbye to my in-laws. My parents, sister Julie (and Camden), and brother Jordan (with Cindy and Afton) were camping up in Island Park. So I drove up there for the evening. We did a couple of fun geocaches in the mountains. Then we had a yummy dutch oven dinner. I drove home and took Cindy with me.

I took Monday off work and went back up to Island Park. We hung out and played games. We played a mostly fun game of dominoes and a really interesting game of Mormon bridge. Camden was a sweetie and it was fun to see him playin in the dirt and water. He is so good at his sign language and is starting to use the potty. He wasn't quite sure how to enjoy s'mores, but that's ok because it left more for me! I'll be able to post some pictures later.

We're planning on going up to Island Park again this weekend. It will just be us and my parents. I'll keep you updated. Also, if you want to read some really cute stories, go t my sister Stephanie's blog and read about Jessica's little antics. She's so awesome.

No more waterproof mascara.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Still Hanging In There

I went to work today prepared for the worst. I made sure to dress my best, in something I felt comfortable in and looked great in and something I could sweat in. :) I even went to Wal-Mart at 11:30 last night and bought waterproof mascara.

By the way, I don't like waterproof mascara. It goes on funny.

I enter my cubicle and my heart is racing. I expect to see something on my desk. Like a note that says, "Come to my office as soon as you get in." Or even a box with the the following words on it: Please pack and leave. But nothing is on my desk. So I tentatively set down my purse and take off my sunglasses. I sit on my ball (I have a "fitness orb" or pilates ball instead of a chair). I unlock my computer. It's been rebooted. I just know that means that they've put some kind of tracker on my computer to watch me. I double click on Outlook. It takes years for the program to load. I memorize it's logo. And finally, I see I have three new e-mails.

I close my eyes. I take a big breath and swallow hard.

I open my eyes and see who the emails are from...and there are of no consequence to this story. Nothing. No notes. No phone messages. No emails. No, they're just waiting to ambush me here at my cubicle.

My friend Jamie comes to visit me and perches on my desk like she does every morning around 9:00 when I come in. She says she's going to the cafeteria for breakfast and I decide to go with her. I get an orange juice and a cookie and watch as the nine-month pregnant woman devours a breakfast burrito (a food that I've never quite understood). And as we eat and talk, the VPM comes in and purchases something. He doesn't stop by. He doesn't say anything. But I know he's seen me and I've seen him. But no reaction. Just a lot more of nothing.

I work hard all day. I get more done in this day than I usually do in three. All morning, nothing. I go to lunch with friends. Nothing. Every time my office phone rings, I hold my breath. Nothing. A whole lotta nothing.

Several of us escape for a few minutes and head to the dairy, or "Moo" as we like to call it, for an ice cream break. I order a scoop of German chocolate ice cream in a cone and its delicious. I spill a teeny drop on my new white shirt that I purchased special late last night. Tisa has a Tide pen in her purse. I should do that. She's a mom. She's the only one there who's a mom (officially--but give Jamie another couple weeks) and it's obvious. Will I ever be as prepared with Tide pens in my purse for mishaps just like this?

Back to work. The VPN hurries by my cubicle (he's always in a hurry) but back tracks for a moment when he sees me sitting there. He asks me how I am and explains again that he thinks there's a better way to get money than to just bang down the door. The CEO will only respond by digging in. As soon as he says what he has to say, he starts to walk away (he always does this--if he were a doctor I would quit seeing him because he rarely waits for a reaction or gives time to answer questions). I ask if he's read my letter. He says no. I told him to please read it and that he'll understand my angle and what I am trying to do after that. He also promises to keep reminding the CMO about this so that we can get something taken care of. And he's gone.

I respond to the email the CMO sent me yesterday. I copy the VPM. I apologize for putting him in a position he was unprepared for. I asked him to read my letter before assuming I am raising a rowdy, angry army against the CEO. I tell him I would love his feedback and help as he can only help my success. I tell him I plan to go forward with this next week but if he needs another day or two, than he can set up a specific date with me.

We'll see how it goes tomorrow.

I will wear the waterproof mascara again.

I hate waterproof mascara.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Roadblocks

My "adoption crusade" at work picked up some speed today. Speed is a double-edged sword. It can get you somewhere faster, but, as the cops always like to say, speed kills. I have gotten my own personal letter/proposal for benefits to a point where I have started to share it with others. I have been bouncing ideas off a supervisor who has been helping me position the letter just right. He offered to write an adendum to my proposal to say he also thought adding adoption benefits would be a good idea. That gave me the idea to get as many letters as I could. A type of petition, I guess, but more persuasive.

I wanted to approach my closest friends and colleagues and having worked in several departments, I have quite few. I decided to approach the chiefs of the departments to get their backing first and permission to solicit people in their departments. I e-mailed the Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) and asked him for five minutes of his time. He didn't respond to my email so I tracked him down in his office later that day and asked him for some time. He reponded that if we could wait until Monday (the next work day)he could give me his "undivided attention." So I waited. I looked for him Monday but he was always in meetings or had othe people with him in his office.

Monday I happened to run into the Chief Information Officer (CIO) who I used to work for. I talked to him about my proposal and he was enthusiastic to support it. He said he'd write something on his own and I had permission to "spam" my friends in IT for their support as well. And I did later that day.

So Monday passed without speaking with the CMO. That brings us to Tuesday. I felt like a stalker because I checked his office every 20 minutes to see if the door was open and to see if he was there. I ran into him at 4:00. He was speaking outside his office with other people, but I sort of intruded and asked when I could have five minutes. He told me to come back in a half hour. I did. He was shut in his office having a meeting. I kept checking back, figuring he'd be finished with them any minute. I waited until after 7:00 p.m., but he'd left for the day and I'd missed him.

And that brings us to today. Again, I stalked his office. I told my friends what was going on and they helped me keep an eye on the CMO's office. I decided that if I couldn't talk with him I would talk to the Vice President of Marketing (VPM) because he often will fill in when the CMO can't. To be fair, the VPM didn't know I was looking for him, but I did pass by his office all afternoon to see if he was available for a quick sit down. Nope. At about 3:00 p.m. I checked on the CMO's office again. He was there, packing his brief case. I didn't even say anything. He just said I had bad timing, he was headed to the CEO's house and I'd have to wait until tomorrow.

So, tomorrow will make it one week. I was tired of waiting. I was tired of getting lead on and pushed aside. So I went to my supervisor who is directly under the CMO and asked for his permission to "spam" the marketing room. He gave me the ok. I sent the email.

Thirty seconds later, I get a call from the VPM. He was on his way to the CEO's house and read my email on his pda. He immediately called to say he thought I was going about this the wrong way, that I would be strong arming the company with my petition and that I should've been more quiet. He also said some other things that I won't post here because I believe there were told in confidence. They angered me though.

A minute later, I recieve an email from the CMO. It says tersely, "I wish you would've talked to me before you sent this."

I don't have a lot to go off of, but I'm thinking that I'll have a bad day tomorrow. I figure they are afraid that by making this "public", I will be "strong-arming" and "forcing" the company to do something out of embarassment. I can see why they would be afraid of that. I have considered that as well and have been so so careful to keep my proposal very positive and grateful for all the things the company does offer me. I have started receiving letters from my colleagues as well. Every letter is super sweet and positive. There is nothing like "You discriminate pigs, I can't believe we don't have this benefit." I can't believe how positive and supportive they all have been.

I've also been surprised at the reactions of the CMO and the VPM. One reason I went to my supervisor in the first place for help is because he knows the CEO and helped me to position my letter in a way that would appeal to him. Also when I talked to the CIO who also knows the CEO, he was supportive and didn't say anything like "This will tick him off, don't do it."

And I know I'm reading a lot into a brief phone call and a vague email, but I couldn't help but feel I was being scolded. I just have to get myself under control and not get defensive. I haven't done anything wrong. I had permission. I need to enlist their help in my cause and be willing to hear their arguments. But before they say a word to me, I want them to read my letter and the other letters. As quickly as they responded, I know they didn't read it.

I am worried. How could I not be? I am a crier, and I hate that. I'll just have to do the best I can tomorrow. Hello Waterproof Mascara.

I have heard whispered rumors of individuals who have received money on a case by case basis. And maybe that's what HR meant when they told me to write them a letter. But I don't want a handout. I want a better company.

One of my friends said that they just reacted too quickly. Once they read my proposal and the accompanying letters, they'll feel better about it. I mean, really, what can they do to me? Tell me that I embarrassed them?

I guess we'll see.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

The Bombs Bursting In Air

"You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism."
-Erma Bombeck


Yesterday was the Fourth of July. My favorite holiday. Justin's family was here to celebrate and my oldest brother Brad came and stayed with Jordan. We had a barbeque on the Fourth and my brothers came over to celebrate with us. And Jordan brought dry ice. Do I need to say more?

For those of you who don't know my brothers, they like bombs. They get a little stupid when it comes to things like that. Here are some videos that will explain things better than I can.

Take 1: This is how it's supposed to happen--a 3 inch PVC pipe, a dry ice bomb, a rag, a tennis ball, and a little ramrodding.


video


Take 2: Let's try using watermelon rinds instead of a tennis ball!

video

This bomb did not go off because the bottle was leaking. We couldn't get it out of the pipe though, because it expanded. So Jordan, Justin, and Brad removed the PVC pipe from the ground, unscrewed the bottom and tried to shake it out. Didn't work. So, while Jordan and Justin held the pipe, Brad poked at it with the ramrod. It exploded back onto Brad's hand. The lid of the bottle took some of Brad's skin with it. He was a little swollen and bloody and at first we weren't sure how bad it was, but it really wasn't that serious. Here's a picture of his hand in ice.



So after everyone settled down from that mishap (and we cleaned and dressed the bloody wound) the boys decided that if at first you don't succeed, try again with more dry ice.




So in the video below, they used a Granny Smith apple, left over from our apple pie.


Take 3: Apple Surprise

video


The best part of this experience didn't get on film. Right as I shut the camera off, a grinning Brad said, "Let's do it again!"

Take 4: Grenade

video


Take 5: Another Success

video


Take 6: Banana Split

video


Take 7: Getting Stupider -- Bazooka Style

video

The back of the PVC pipe blew out. This redirected much of the pressure onto the back of Brad's head. He wasn't hurt. Cindy moved the baby jumper out of the way of my filming...and right into the line of fire. One of the little stuffed birdies was knocked off, but there was no real damage. What great fun we have together!


After all the explosions Brad said he wasn't as afraid of dry ice bombs as he had been. He said without fire and steel, they're not too damaging. I guess a guy who experienced three dry ice bombs in the course of an hour would know.



Afton waving a flag at the parade



Brad chewing on dry ice and blowing out smoke



Haiden, Connie, and Jerry at the fireworks show



Justin and Lara at the fireworks show



Fireworks! The show was breathtaking.



I love my country. I love it's history. The future of this great nation and her inhabitants is uncertain. These are quotes that I love and I think could help us all through whatever is in store for us. I heard once that the founding fathers believed that strong individuals make a strong society, and it cannot work the other way around. That is so true. It is easy to see that certain areas of the country, certain towns, are more poverty stricken and suffer more hardships because they rely on a government for things which they can provide for themselves. The government cannot be strong unless each individual person is strong. At the fireworks show, Idaho lieutenant govenor Jim Risch said, "Remember that the government can never provide for you better than you can provide for yourself." That really resonanted with me. I think we are headed for some tough economic times. We need to look to the examples of our grandparents and greatgrandparents and become strong, resourceful, comminuty oriented individuals. The system can never fail us, we can only fail it.



"My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!"
-Thomas Jefferson


"Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves."
-Abraham Lincoln


"Government is not reason; it is not eloquence. It is force. And force, like fire, is a dangerous servant and a fearful master."
-George Washington


"Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."
-John Adams


"Ours is the only country deliberately founded on a good idea."
-John Gunther


"I think there is one higher office than president and I would call that patriot."
-Gary Hart


"We have enjoyed so much freedom for so long that we are perhaps in danger of forgetting how much blood it cost to establish the Bill of Rights."
-Felix Frankfurter


"We dare not forget that we are the heirs of that first revolution."
-John F. Kennedy


"Any people that would give up liberty for a little temporary safety deserves neither liberty nor safety."
-Benjamin Franklin


"... God forbid we should ever be twenty years without such a rebellion. The people cannot be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented, in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive. If they remain quiet under such misconceptions, it is lethargy, the forerunner of death to the public liberty.... And what country can preserve its liberties, if it's rulers are not warned from time to time, that this people preserve the spirit of resistance? Let them take arms. The remedy is to set them right as to the facts, pardon and pacify them. What signify a few lives lost in a century or two? The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time, with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure."
-Thomas Jefferson


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