A few fun stories for your Friday (a 7QT post)


Am I laughing or crying? Crying. Definitely crying.

I’m typing these up on Thursday night as I listen to my poor baby crying upstairs. He’s got the family cold, and is so, so tired, but he won’t nurse, and holding him is like holding a cranky, squirmy, unhappy child who will.not.go.to.sleep, even though that’s all he wants. It wasn’t supposed to be this way…he was almost asleep, despite the noise of siblings crowing as Mommy read them good night stories…but in the last five minutes of his night feeding, Nicholas’s nose started bleeding. I held a tissue to Nicholas’s nose while Alex moved the baby off my lap, and…well, that was the end of that. Poor baby!

(Poor Mommy. I don’t know if I’m going to make it. Surely he’ll nurse now? Surely? Surely?)

(In case you’re wondering, Daddy was not at home to help during the drama.)

Anyway, a few fun stories for your Friday….


An Easter Story: On Easter Sunday, I sang the psalm at our church–a Gospel setting of Ps. 118 by Grayson Warren Brown. The kids recognize it because we have it on video from Nicholas’s baptism, and before Mass Nicholas was humming it softly: “Be gwad, we-joice.” On this particular setting, the music ends pretty much with the last note of the final refrain, so the whole church was poised in silence as the sound died away, and my daughter, nestled in the congregation with one of her babysitters, shouted, “YEAH!” 850 people cracked up. It was awesome.


An Easter Image: Speaking of Easter, here’s the Easter Tree, adapted from my book, from the first grade hallway of our school–on the first Sunday of Lent…

and on Easter Sunday:


Light at the end of the tunnel Eastern end of ...

Light at the end of the tunnel Eastern end of Newchurch No2 Tunnel (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The light at the end of the tunnel: Nicholas is beginning to be trustworthy to go outside by himself. He will do as directed and stay in the garage for five minutes while I go change a diaper or get other kids ready to come out and play, and I no longer feel like I have to watch him like a hawk to make sure he doesn’t vanish. I’m not ready to let him out on his own the way Alex does…but I can see the light.


The light at the end of the tunnel, 2: Julianna has been going to the bathroom without being told. This is huge.


That light at the end of the tunnel…is sometimes an oncoming train: Lest we get too excited, however…I thought Julianna had finally outgrown trying to kill her baby brother. Then I found her smashing his face into the Boppy, such that he truly could not breathe. I swear that girl is giving me gray hair.


Motivation and Inspiration: My grandmother gave me a book for Christmas called Rediscover Catholicism, by Matthew Kelly. For the first hundred pages I was skeptical; it seemed he was talking in generalities and never getting to specifics. But the chapter on fasting really convinced me. I can’t do justice to the thought process behind it, but in a nutshell, the he says that in order to truly be free, we (mind/soul) have to be in control of the body (WANT! WANT! WANT!). Otherwise we’re just obeying physical cravings. The way we achieve discipline is through fasting. He suggests that at every meal, you should deny yourself once. Not a huge thing, just a tiny thing. I’ve been doing it this week, and talk about redefining meals as a spiritual exercise! It really resonates with me, because in the post-Easter return to sweets, I always have trouble with self-control.


Photo by wstera2, via Flickr

A Seasonal Muddle: Not long ago I was shaking my virtual head on Facebook, reflecting on the weird mixture of seasonal projects I had underway. But I don’t think I fully processed it until yesterday. Early in Lent, I was doing radio interviews on Lent, finishing an Advent bulletin insert, brainstorming a Christmas bulletin insert, writing a rough draft of a book on Ordinary Time, and rehearsing a choir for Easter. I didn’t know which way was up. All I can say is…I have a healthy new respect for those in the liturgical publishing industry. How do they keep their heads on straight?

7 quick takes sm1 7 Quick Takes Friday (vol. 169)


14 thoughts on “A few fun stories for your Friday (a 7QT post)

  1. Good morning! And good post. 🙂 Hope the baby (and you) got some good rest! I have that book, Rediscover Catholicism. I’m still in the first few chapters and bored. Guess I’ll try to plow through — I’m intrigued about the fasting bit.

  2. I love that book. Sadly, I am in the generation gap of the Catholic church. I went to Catholic parochial schools from K-12, but I learned very little about my faith at all. It was almost embarrassing to call myself Catholic, because I knew so little about the faith. It has been through this book and my Why Catholic groups that I have finally understood the religion that I have been practicing my whole life! Yeah for the potty training!!!! 🙂

    • You know, I’m in that generation, too, and I always felt like my actual instruction barely scratched the surface, but I still think it’s that way today. I think it’s always been that way, frankly–ppl given an elementary-school understanding of their faith, and the only way they get beyond that is to go seeking it themselves. I’m not sure it’s actually useful to generalize that one generation or another has been better- or less-catechized than another. I think the major shift is that a couple of generations ago the mainline society values lined up more with our Catholic values, so the challenge wasn’t there to cause the split.

      Hmmmm, methinks there’s a blog post in there somewhere…

  3. I LOVE the tree! I somehow missed that you wrote a book. I guess I kind of remember a post or two or five about it, but I didn’t make the neccessary association of what it meant. Anyways, I’ll have to check it out for next year.

    • Hilarious! Well, I try to run the balance between being a good self-promoter and one who annoys and turns everyone off. 🙂 But it’s down in the sidebar, if you’re interested. 😉

  4. Thank you for mentioning the book Rediscover Catholicism. An anonymous donor gave a copy to every member of our parish. That should have inspired me to read it, but I found that reading your blog post inspired me more!

  5. Janelle

    I LOVE the thought of denying yourself once at each meal, even if it is small. What a wonderful idea! thanks for sharing!

  6. Love Matthew Kelly! Those who have a hard time getting into the book, watch his movie: Seven Pillars of Catholic Spirituality. He’s a funny and engaging speaker and the content is similar. (And he’s got a great accent, lol). You can watch clips or order a free dvd at dynamiccatholic.com

    • The accent must be a killer. 🙂 It’s so funny that of everything I wrote today, this book is the one that people are most interested in. That must say something!

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