Not that I'm complaining, but it's Friday again already?
1) Lessons from Veggie Tales: "For a thankful heart is a happy heart." While we were in the land of Dora for the last year or so (yes, I'm THAT mom that let her kid who wasn't 2 watch television, and probably way more than she should - reference #2 before commenting please), we have now entered the land of Veggie Tales. Can I tell you how much infinitely more sane I feel? Of course, this means I go to work belting "I'm so blue-hoo-hoo, blue-hoo-hoo, blue-hoo-hoo, hooooo," but not only can I stomach the stories more, they often will hit home for me with quite a punch. Scripture is the living Word of God, whether on paper or with cartoon vegetables, after all. At this point we are slightly obsessed with Madame Blueberry (be thankful for what you have and do not always want more "things") and Dave and the Giant Pickle (no matter how "little" you think you are, with God all things are possible). Hmmm, well played, Lord, well played. Use my 2 year old's viewing choices to get your message across. A gentle spring wind would work too.
2) Guilt is sometimes healthy, but we should be in the business of building up, not tearing down and condemning. Confession time: I kind of went off on a rant in a comment to one of my friends on Facebook because of a link she posted to a blog article ranting about Rachel Martin's post, Dear Mom on her iPhone. I deleted it after I woke up fully. While I still believe everything I wrote, I realized I just did exactly what I was chiding the author of the article for doing - ranting when something struck a nerve. Let's face it, that's generally when we rant. Here's the thing - I do believe we need to let go of excessive mom-guilt. Can we qualify it as that, though? Excessive guilt is damaging. A healthy dose of Jiminy Cricket in our ear and on our heart - maybe not so damaging. Guilt can be an indicator that something is askew, and sometimes that is exactly what we need to hear, as long as it is dealt with encouragement and not condemnation. With the blog in question, Rachel convicted me that something needed to change, but knowing her writing, I know she did it with the utmost love and encouragement, not condemnation. If you don't read her regularly, perhaps you didn't know that. Did I feel guilt? Oh heck yeah. Did it change the way I do things? Absolutely. Do I sit and lament about how awful I am if I fall back into old patterns with iPhone use? Not as much. I just dust myself off, get back up, and start over. Like any addiction or bad-habit, it takes time to modify behavior. We all have our issues and challenges - why not acknowledge them and then help and encourage one another to overcome those struggles? It seems while there is an awful lot of unnecessary mom-guilt inducing judgment out there, to react by saying no guilt is good just reinforces the "I'm okay, you're okay" culture which is, like, not okay, okay? (hee hee) There is right and there is wrong, and we need to acknowledge that in our own lives so we can pass it on to our children.
|Clearly, these are NOT the Pope's shoes|
3) Pope shoes: There has been much ado about Pope Francis since news of his election. Most of it is a breath of fresh air, but some of it is making people nervous. Remind you of anyone else? A certain carpenter, perhaps? Pope Francis has been on the job about a week and is shaking things up! Praise God! Jumping out of the Popemobile to bless someone, greeting all Massgoers after Mass, and now...celebrating Holy Thursday Mass at a juvenile detention center with prisoners. The Holy Father will be presenting a challenge to us all, much like that carpenter from Nazareth. Are we too tied to pomp and circumstance (not that all of it is a bad thing, but are we attached)? Does the fact that he's not wearing red shoes shake your faith? It really shouldn't. I'm quite excited to see what the Holy Spirit has in store for the Church. In essentials, I dare say she will never change, mostly because God already told us that. Not much of a dare, I suppose. With all the hoopla surrounding Pope Francis, there is one strain of commentary that has been troubling me, especially as I was praying last night. While we are in love with our new Holy Father as well we should be, some are using it as an opportunity to make snide commentary about the "policies" or "style" of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI. I don't think that the Holy Father in any way would desire his new style to create any hostility or lack of charity to our former Pope. The kicker for me last night, though I hardly think that Benedict is on the interwebs, was wondering what it felt like to hear all that about yourself when all you did was serve God according to His will and not your own. Having laid down his life for the Church, to have the churchgoers insinuating that somehow he was less holy and less humble due to the red shoes (which are not Prada - please give that a rest) or formal attire of Pope's past...how hurtful would that be? So, please, be in love with Pope Francis for being what God has called him to be, compare even if you must, but do so with charity in realization that the man you are comparing him with also laid down his life in service for you, regardless of whether you liked his style or not. Thank you kindly.
4) Simplifying isn't always simple. It takes oodles of time. I am learning to be happy with baby steps, so the purging could take a few seasons. I'm actually okay with that. I told you there was a lot of healing and deliverance last weekend! Of course, if someone wanted to find us a couple of days where we didn't have other obligations and would take the kids so we could focus on a room or two with great intensity, I wouldn't mind. :)
5) Oh, Google, what are you doing? Really, is it necessary to dump Google Reader? Well, I guess I am glad I use Feedly, since it seems that is what you'll be using to help us transition to a Google-Readerless world. I'd been searching for an app that would let me read seamlessly on my iDevice, and I finally found my heart's desire with Feedly, mostly. The only thing I don't like is that it doesn't store old posts, but I can get to the blog's website pretty stinking easily to find them on there. Yeah, it's really not a downer at all. So far I'm pleased. How about you? Any suggestions for other apps?
6) My new favorite blog: Catholic and Loving It. The Hubbers had been telling me for quite some time that I would enjoy it, but I never quite got into following blogs until recently. Once again, he was right. I love it. Written by Mark Shea (who I've referenced before with his book, The Work of Mercy), the writing is quirky and sarcastic, but charitable and wise. I pretty much am nodding my head in agreement while trying not to laugh and wake any sleeping children. Love. So go. Check it out if you haven't. Now. Do it. Do it now.
7) I heart sleep. I'm not sure that really is a shocker to anyone, especially moms of littles. I still think it is worth saying out loud sometimes. This past weekend I got to sleep without the interruption of babies or cats for TWO FULL NIGHTS! That's TWO nights of 6+ hours of sleep! To top it off, Baby J even slept through the night for the first time in way too long and I got ONE MORE night of 5+ hours of sleep! Oh, slumber, dear friend, how sweet to see you again. Lest you think I brag, we were back to some wee hour waking last night. Still, we are moving in the right direction and I will take it for now. Plus, I know I have the potential for yet one more night of 6+ hours as we head to another conference this weekend.
And now for a little humor...
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