Monday, June 26, 2006

My Stuff

One of the reasons for my sorry blogging slowdown has been the task of selling and moving out of my home.

It started when we decided to look into having a new home built in a new development called Eagle Mountain (west of Lehi, UT). The prices were good, and we can get a home that’s bigger, more wheelchair accessible, and not very much more expensive than the one we’ve lived in for 18+ years.

But the transition has been very difficult. First, we had to do a lot of work on the house to get it ready to sell, including a new roof. Then, we had to list it. Then, we had to start moving our things out of it and into a storage unit. A few things we moved over to my in-law’s house (that’s where we’re living now, until the new one is done this fall), but most of our worldly possessions are packed into a 20x30 storage shed.

And that’s where I’m going with this one today. Because it has been a real eye-opener for me. My own materialism has been really staring me in the face. And it all boils down to this: For about two months, now, I have been living quite comfortably without the thousands of little trinkets, bits, and items that (when I bought them) I could not live without.

And when you think of that, it is quite humbling and more than a little embarrassing.

I did my mission in Honduras. I taught families where their entire home was as big as my living room, and everything they owned (all five or six of them) was in it. And yet, they always bought me a soda or offered me something to eat every time I visited. I taught a family that literally lived in a tent, and another living in a structure they’d built out of cardboard boxes and wood.

I’ve been quite surprised just how easily my kids have lived without all the millions of toys they’ve accumulated over the years. A few Pokemon, a game cube, and some Yu-Gi-Oh cards, and they’re happy. There’s so many things we’ve bought them that got packed away without even a second thought.

It sure makes me think. I hope it changes me for the long run.

Mark Hansen

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

My Sons, My Songs

I had a very special moment this morning with my two sons.

My oldest woke me up and immediately got on Mom’s laptop. Usually he plays games, but this time he said he wanted me to go to my music site. I was intrigued, but I wasn’t sure what he was thinking. So, I loaded it up for him.

While I was getting Jacob changed and dressed, he started playing my songs. They both smiled and laughed and sang along with each one they played. One by one, they proclaimed each one to be “their favorite!”

Brendon picked up my little backpacker guitar, put it on and started banging his head along with “Dance With the Devil”, and that sent Jacob into hysterical laughter.

Maybe you’ve seen the tone of my posts about music lately haven’t been all that excited. I’ve been struggling with the place music has in my life lately. In retrospect, I kinda went through this the last time I was about to finish a CD. I’ve been working on these songs for so long, that it sometimes feels like they’ll never get done, and I’m spinning my wheels, etc, etc…

But it sure felt great to have my boys jump in and be so into the tunes.

BTW, I just posted a new one, too. I’ve been working on this one for a couple of years, and it’s finally done! “The Things I Do” is a bluesy rocker (or a rocked up blues tune, if you prefer) about bad habits.

Mark Hansen


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