Saturday, August 25, 2012

Moats and Castle Walls

I'm going to share a little of my crazy with you.

Oh, you know we ALL have a little bit of crazy in each of us.  If you deny this fact then you are even crazier than I am.


Until now, I don't think I ever realized how many clothes I actually own.  For years, I would buy pretty clothes that went straight into storage.  I know, crazy, right?  (I warned you.)  You see, when my engagement was broken a little over nine and a half years ago, I was in a bad place.  Depressed, irrational, hurt, broken, sad...all of these things.  But most of all, I was fearful of being hurt that badly again.

I like fashion.  I like dressing up like a girly girl.  If you have known me in the past 10 years, you would probably not have guessed that in eleventy billion years.  Yet, in those years (yes, years) of darkness in my life, I was so afraid that I hid myself.  I wore the most dumpy, least attractive clothing possible.  I would not wear make up or even cut my hair for months.  Oh, but I still bought super cute clothes and lip gloss in a rainbow of colors.  They just went straight into boxes and storage.  I would look at them once in a while, but I didn't dare wear anything so flashy out and about.  It might attract someone whom I would fall in love with and allow them to break my heart once again.  I really think being okay with my weight gain and frumpy, drab attire was like a castle wall around my heart.  If anything, it was a purposeful barrier that I created to protect myself.

Only now, years later, have I finally opened up every single box of storage clothes and I am going through every piece of clothing I own.  Yes, I have cute skirts that I bought 7 years ago that still have the tags on them.  Some fit, some don't.  Some are still classic and in style, some really are not!  The point is that the barrier is down.  The castle wall has been breached.  My body is not perfect, but I am enjoying dressing cute, girly, sexy, and professional pretty frequently.  I am getting noticed.  I am getting compliments at work and beyond.  And what am I saying to this attention?  I'm trying my darnedest to take the compliments in stride and saying:  Thank you.

But I seriously need another closet or something.

And, if my personal appearance was my castle wall, my home is my castle moat.

I did mention crazy, right?  Right.

I moved to my first apartment (after my internship in Ohio...I don't count 2 months in an apartment a home) after the dark period in my life began.  I have never kept a neat home.  My home is my moat, an extra level of protection from getting hurt.  I know this sounds insane, but hang in there.

I purposely left my house a mess so that I felt I couldn't invite anyone over.  If no one came over, then I couldn't make memories with them in my private, sacred, homey space.  Extra things started to pile up, and lo and behold, at times my home looked like an episode of hoarders (I mean, think about the clothes alone!).  I hated it, but I would get overwhelmed and couldn't get past it.  Well, my moat is draining.  I think the fact that it totally annoys me and I spend my free time trying to get it all together and looking amazing again is a big step.  An even bigger step is allowing my current boyfriend to come the midst of the organizing and change.  It completely worries me that he has seen my crazy.  He sits with me in the living room and looks directly at it (one should really shield their eyes from such things, like the Ark in Raiders).  Yet, he still calls me and comes over.  I really don't get it, but it makes me feel more normal than insane.  Yay for sanity.

Personally, I think these things are true for more people than I think.  However, I feel blessed to have the insight to recognize what the heck is going on in my heart and brain and move past it.  Praise God for having this insight and contemplative nature!  Whoever shares with me in my life at this point is in for a real treat.  I'm striving everyday to be a better person than the previous day - and it seems to be working.  It just gets more awesome from here...

Well, I'm back to going through piles and piles of clothes.

What does your crazy look like?

Friday, August 3, 2012

Five Things

Within the past year and a half, I began to rethink my "must haves" for a potential spouse.  You know what I'm talking about...the mega-list that a girl will make that includes all the qualities of her future spouse.  I'm talking lines and lines of qualities that no man could possibly live up to.  It's idealistic and unreasonable, but when you make it you don't realize how crazy it really is.

So, I slashed burned cursed revised my list.

I really spent a lot of time contemplating and creating this new list.  I tried to make it with attainable goals and only 5 points.  Very important points.  When I finished it, I realized why all my relationships did not work out.  NO ONE (even my ex-fiance) would have gotten a "check" for all five points.  And NO ONE has ever gotten a check for my number five.  Or really, if I am completely honest with myself, NO ONE has gotten a check for my number four as well. 

Yes, I still think number four and five are attainable.  In fact, they are probably two of the most important points.

So, without further ado, I present my "five things."

1.  He makes me happy to the point my friends comment on how happy I am.
2.  He is a Christian and we feel comfortable praying with/for each other.
3.  He is open to having children, if God so desires to bless us with such a gift.
4.  I feel comfortable being my authentic self with him (I trust him).  He likes me because (despite) of my quirks.
5.  The way he treats me reminds me of how my Dad treats my Mom and how my Grandad treated my Gramma.

What do you think of my list?  Do you have things that are "must haves" for a potential future spouse?

Sunday, July 29, 2012


I have been very private about my vocational discernment the last several years.  Even my closest friends do not know the inner dialogue of my heart.  Only my Lord knows the give and take when it comes to this.  So believe me when this post is "kinda a big deal..."

Before I was Catholic, I thought vocation meant finding a career.  However, within the Church, vocation has an entirely different meaning.  When you are Catholic, discerning your vocation means you are considering God's will and intent for your life.  There are definite choices:

*Religious Life (Men's or Women's religious communities - sisters, brothers, nuns, monks...)
*Married Life

I remember the first time someone asked me the "vocation" question.  It was in 1998, not long after I went to my first Mass (see my conversion story tab).  I was at my boyfriend's mom's after funeral gathering at the family house (his mom died of cancer about 6 weeks after we started dating).  There was a priest in the basement.  I had never really spoken or interacted with a priest before.  He asked me my name and then immediately asked me, "Hey!  Have you ever thought about becoming a nun?"  That moment was awkward, at best.  It was more shocking, to be honest.  In all my life, no one had ever just so bluntly asked me such a question.  My answer?  "I'm not Catholic."  His response?  "Well, have you thought about becoming Catholic?"  My answer?  A shy smile and nervous laughter.  I would later learn that not only was this priest a close family friend of my boyfriend's family, but also the St. Louis Archdiocese Director of Vocations.  So, his questions made more sense in context, but that conversation stuck with me.  I mean, I *did* become Catholic two years after that conversation.  Was the other part to come true as well?

I never really questioned my vocation until my engagement was broken.  But then again, when I became Catholic, I was with my boyfriend of two years.  In the midst of heartache and pain, I wondered the big question of "why."  I would go back and forth for years, questioning where I belonged, and often longing to hide myself in the concealment of a religious cloister so I would no longer have to worry about someone breaking my fragile heart.  I would pray for God to give me the discipline necessary for such a life, but nothing really changed.  I also knew I was looking at a religious vocation as a way to run away from my hurt - not really the best idea.  Ever.

I tried for years to live in my own cloister, in a way.  My bestie commented that I would keep myself busy with extra duties so I didn't have "time" to date or find a husband.  This is very true.  I would make excuses why I wasn't compatible with certain men.  I wasn't feeling a spark with anyone, and so I continued to question my vocation.

In the past two years, I gave up on the possibility of a religious vocation.  I figured it would have happened by now if it was going to happen.  Of course, I thought the same thing about married life.  I'm currently 33 for goodness sake.  This was not my plan.  So, I started to consider the possibility that I would be one of those women who would be single for the rest of their life.  But surely this was not God's plan for me, I would pray!  The thought of singlehood for the rest of my life brings sadness to my heart.  And, I remembered a moment that I had shut out of my mind years ago...

Years ago, when I was still with my boyfriend mentioned above, I babysat for a good friend, Kathie, several times a week.  Most of the babysitting time was when her daughter was 4-8 months old.  Madeline was one of the sweetest, cutest babies I had ever had the pleasure of meeting.  I remember babysitting her one day, and I was laying on the couch and she was crawling on top of me.  She rested on my chest and fell asleep on me.  This angel, sleeping on my heart, brought me to tears.  In that moment, I knew I was meant to be a mother, a wife, a minister of the family.  Thinking about it now I still get choked up.

But I shut that image out.  The thought that it might not happen for me clawed at my heart.

But, a few months ago when I remembered that image while I was talking with a friend, I began to hope again.  I began to trust again.  And, I became more aware of every opportunity God placed in front of me.

I am hopeful again that my person will find me, or has already found/met me.  I honestly don't know at this moment in time.  What I do know is that I pray for my future spouse every single day.  I have for years.  I must admit that whoever that lucky future spouse is, he has years of prayer backing him up in our future endeavors.  I must trust in that!  It may not be easy, but it will be full of prayer, thanksgiving, and hope.

Jer 29:11

Monday, July 23, 2012

Summer Surprises

So, things have been happening this summer and I haven't been blogging.  This summer has continued to surprise me.  Over and over again.

I did not in a bazillion years think that I would have an amazing summer of romance.

I did not think I would be dating three men at once.

I did not think that dating the man I had been pining over for a decade would be such a disappointment.

And, I did not think that the one I was most reluctant to date would be the one I would leave the rest in the dust for.

I did not think someone would be calling me his girlfriend before the end of July.  Yet, that has happened, too.

I feel...
cared for
.....and wrapped up in one big ball of emotion.

It's been 20 days since he first kissed me, and I am (as my knitting friends said at knit nite) beaming.  I have no idea what tomorrow brings, but I am trying my darnedest to live in the moment and enjoy this unexpected blessing.

The quote in picture I posted sort of explains what happened.  He keeps asking me why I started flirting with him one evening during conversation after we had been hanging out for months just as friends. 

I have no answer.

It just happened. 

I opened my heart just a crack?  I took down just one more brick that I had used to build a wall years ago?  I trusted that God had me in that moment for a reason?

I joke that it was the heat of the outdoor patio at night, or the fireworks peeking through the trees or the three bottles of beer I consumed... 

But Baby, if you are reading this, it was not the heat or the fireworks or even the beer. 

It was just you.


Friday, June 8, 2012


Jefferson Barracks Park

Today was one of those days that I felt truly alive!

These types of days have been surfacing less and less each year.  I want every day to be like today!

First, I needed to drop something off at a friend's house this morning, so I set my alarm for 3:30 a.m.  Shockingly, I hopped right out of bed and got the errand done.  I then drove to South St. Louis County to my favorite park, Jefferson Barracks Park, to walk the trail.  The weather was beautiful, and I even jogged some of the trail.  During my entire walking time, I prayed the Rosary with the Sorrowful Mysteries and then the Divine Mercy Chaplet.  I think this is such a better choice for me than simply listening to music while I walk.  I want to go back and do this again in the morning tomorrow, but I really need to find a good walking park closer to home.

On my walk I saw a bunch of deer (and no bobcats or bears, thank goodness!).

I was feeling good when my walk ended at 8am.  I didn't feel like driving home in morning rush hour, so I took back roads and took a nice drive.  Windows open, music blasting.  It was amazing!  I stopped to get some breakfast and then drove some more.  This time, I had my roof and all the windows open, my car stereo on max (it's a miracle I didn't blow a speaker), and I even took my shirt off (oh yes I did!).  Well, I was wearing a sports bra, but I had never done that before!  I thought, why the hell not?!  I wanted to get a little sun on my skin, and taking the shirt off would do it.

When I got home from driving for 3 hours, (!), I took a 3 hour nap before going into work.  A coworker commented that I looked like I was glowing.  Yes.  Yes, I was.

A glorious day in the midst of some crazy this week.  What an absolute blessing!  I hope tomorrow provides at least a moment that is like today.

Thank you, God, for today!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

{Book Review} Rita's Story

It is a rare occasion for me to stay up through the wee hours of the morning reading a book.  These wonderful occasions have typically been reserved for captivating, cliffhanger reads including R. L. Stine, Harry Potter and Twilight.  Yet, this wonderful book sale find of 50 cents was read within 4 days time (with only 3 days of actual reading!).  I couldn't put it down.

I wasn't even going to purchase this book.  It doesn't look like anything special.  On the back cover I read one sentence about a healing, and I decided to take a chance.  I was mainly impressed because the book was signed and dated by the author...for 50 cents?  My nerderific bibliophile self was intrigued.

This memoir was engaging and so interesting!  I loved reading every moment of it.  I laughed.  I cried.  I prayed along.  I stopped to reflect on my own life.

I honestly believe that I was supposed to read this book.  I was surprised to read about her studying at Maryville College in St. Louis (where I received 2 of my own degrees) and her work with special education (which I also do).  God spoke to me in a way in this little unassuming book that changed my life.

Read this book.

I will let you borrow my copy.

I plan to share this with all of my friends.

Monday, June 4, 2012

{Book Review} Being George Washington

Although I purchased and started reading this book in late February, I did not finish it until last night.  I must say, I usually enjoy a good biography or works by Glenn Beck because they read authentically to me.

The first half of this book was amazing.  It was told in a journal style about George Washington and the revolutionary period of history.  For the most part, it was chronological, engaging, and wonderfully written.

The last part of the book was less enthralling to me.  A lot of the information seemed to be repetitive, it lost it's chronological appeal, and there was more commentary then actually storyline.  I forced myself to get through it.

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to know a little more about this historical time period and the personality of George Washington.  But be diligent to get through the end!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

10 Ways to Create Joy Everyday

Even when I am having a Debbie Downer kind of day, I try to create little moments of Joy for myself.  I am typically joyful when I bring joy to others.  Since I encounter many people everyday because I work in an amazing amount of school buildings each week, I have many opportunities to create moments of joy.  Here's how I roll.

1.  Smile.  It may seem sort of a simple way to start, but a genuine smile can make others smile which makes me smile more brightly.  Popping into a classroom with a smile on my face can help to change an atmosphere.  It might even make that stressed out secretary smile as well.

2.  Compliment.  I think I once read that it takes 17 positive statements in order for someone to get back to equal with their self-esteem after one negative comment.  I try to point out small things like clothes, hair, bulletin boards, etc.  But, also look for greater compliments, like how people are behaving or executing their joy duties.  Compliments usually lead to smiles (see number 1).

3.  Ask a question and redirect if necessary.  I like to ask, "How is your day going?"  This can be risky, because there is always the chance you will get the answer of "horrible!"  If the answer is positive, share that joy and validate the answer.  If the answer is negative, validate the feeling and redirect with something like, "Well, there's only 30 more minutes until dismissal, I'm sure you can make it!"  OR "I'm sure the day will get better; remember, at least one good thing happens even on a bad day."  Sure, some people will be annoyed, but most will latch on to your positivity!

4.  Do something silly.  Yes, I said silly!  This can break tension in a classroom and make people smile.  Yes, they may be smiling because they think you are insane, but still smiling (see number 1).  I usually sing silliness.  This is usually an impromptu greeting in the classroom or making up a random song about something happening in the moment (like singing, Hello Miss so-and-so, how are you doing today?).  Bonus:  Sometimes people sing back to you.  That makes my day!

5.  Leave notes.  Sometimes it's an email, text message, card, or note on a dry erase board.  But, I love to leave notes.  Even if it is a thanks for a great meeting or a gracious thank you for allowing me to use a space for therapy, notes can make someones day. 

6.  Say thank you.  Many times, people are taken for granted.  Even getting someone to unlock a room for me in a building for the bazillionth time deserves a heartfelt thank you.  It can go a long way.

7.  Listen.  Sometimes, people just need to vent or have someone listen to them.  Take a moment and listen.

8.  Keep your promises.  I have to admit, that this one is sometimes hard for me.  My "to-do" list gets so long that some of the lofty promises I make cannot be accomplished (I need to be more realistic instead of idealistic!).  When you are there for someone, trust increases along with joyful moments.

9.  Bring a treat.  Sharing a meal or snack (or chocolate!) is usually a joyful moment.  I wish I was in buildings more often so I could bring more snacks to my coworkers.

10.  Pray.  Yes, yes, I know what you are thinking.  I work in public schools where prayer is totally taboo.  Well, I tell people I will pray for them (usually after number 7).  And, I follow through.  Hopefully, this will result in joy!

How do you bring JOY to your day?

Monday, April 9, 2012

Give Me Liberty or Give Me...

Contraception?  Seriously?

I have been waiting to post about the HHS Mandate for a while.  I sort of wanted to sit back and see what happened.

Oh, and I see what is happening.

I don't know why we are all shocked.  It's just our mega-government once again dictating to us what we can and cannot do.  The government is trying to push the us to the limit of religious freedom to see how we respond.  If we are passive, the government will continue to push further next time - and so on.

As Cardinal Dolan has stated time and time again, this is not about contraception.  That talking point is a distraction to try and make the Catholic Church look "anti-woman" to the rest of the populous.  It's all about freedom of religion.  And, all of a sudden, I feel like I have something in common with the Patriots who fought for freedom against King George.

Even though my view of contraception is not in step with mainstream culture (geez, can you just have some self-control and close your legs once in a while?), when did it become a "right" for women to receive contraception?  Oh wait.  It's not.  You have a right to pursue happiness.  If happiness for you includes contraception (which I do not agree with) then, by all means, use your money that you earn to purchase such contraception or procure a job that provides it for you.  That is your CHOICE.  Don't take away a Church's or Company's choice by mandating them to go against their own beliefs or conscience.  

How do you feel about the attack on religious freedom in America?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Red Pill

You may have noticed that my little soul hasn't posted in a while.  Well, that's because I have been feeling like I'm living in the movie "The Matrix."

 Does anybody else feel this way?  When did I swallow the red pill?  Seriously, WHEN?  Because I feel like most people are just living in a daze, not understanding or knowing what is actually happening in the country.  I am really wondering when everyone else is going to wake up and smell the crazy.

I don't think I realized how counter-cultural I was becoming until Catholicism was getting so much media attention with the HHS mandate.  Oy.

First of all, I dislike using the term "counter-cultural" because when you do a google image search for this term, you either find things that have peace signs plastered all over the place or communist propaganda.  Again, I say OY.  I just have this feeling that what others consider the "norm" nowadays is something I am rapidly running away from.

Signs that I am moving toward a "counter-cultural" lifestyle (and, perhaps, a sign of impending doom):

1.  I want to get rid of my television.  Don't get me wrong, I want to keep local channels because I live in tornado alley without a basement to retreat to.  However, even American Idol, Grey's Anatomy, and reruns of Friends don't keep my attention anymore.  I'd honestly rather be sleeping.

2.  I can no longer listen to mainstream music.  This is especially disturbing to me since I work as a music therapist.  I listen to contemporary christian music on the radio and occasionally I listen to music that was popular during my high school years (Nirvana, STP, etc.).  However, this is few and far between.

3.  I don't care about celebrities.  At all.  Movie releases, award shows, gossip, TMZ, and all that is related could just as well not exist and I would be a-okay.  I've never really been one to be a celeb-bot (well, except for that phase in fifth and sixth grade with NKOTB), but I used to be able to carry on an intelligent conversation about people.  Now, I have no clue.  But honestly, who really cares.  Not this girl.

4.  I openly admit to people that I watch/listen Glenn Beck, and I don't care what they think about that.  I used to be a closeted Glenn Beck lover.  You know what I'm talking about...  You meet someone and you basically have to talk in code to find out you both like Beck.  This is followed by a ginormous sigh of relief and a smile.

5.  I'm really not interested in fashion anymore.  I'm worried about function that looks good on me.  Perhaps this is age-related more than anything, but I did fluorescent colors when I was in 6th grade, and I don't feel like reliving that time in history.

Does anyone else feel this way?  Do you feel like something is changing?  Can you feel the cultural momentum?

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Amazing Love

I've mentioned before that many times God kicks me in the head, so to speak, about what I am supposed to be doing and focusing on.  Are they usually easy things?  Ummm, absolutely not.  These things have consequences including dealing with upset family, losing friends, canceling a wedding, being threatened, mocked, and other craptastic things.

And now?  Randomly (random in my mind, not to God of course) reconnecting my friend and I after about a 5 year absence of contact.  Realizing this friend is enslaved to some major sin, and now God prompting me to do something about it.

Tonight, a series of events took place that blew my mind.

First, I am prompted to teach PSR at Cletus this year.  I am beginning to become friends with one of the teachers.  Said teacher randomly invites me to XLT tonight at Cletus.  The talk at Cletus was like God crafted the information to speak directly to my heart about my friend.  Because of said talk and Eucharistic Adoration, I am renewed and strengthened to pray and talk to my friend.

Amazing Love.  Poured out for me and all.  God's love has no boundaries, and I am to share that love with my friend, even if I am mocked, persecuted, or whatever.

I think one of the hardest things is that I don't know what God's Will is in all of this.  I could pray until the cows come home, and perhaps I won't see any change in him.  All I know is that this will change me and carve my heart a little closer to God.

Pray for me.  Pray for my friend.  Pray that God's Will be done.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

True Friendship

I am not a perfect person.  My name is not God.  But, I consider myself someone who loves deeply and tries to live a life of joy in the midst of, sometimes, great heartache.  Right now I am having a hard time.

I feel there are certain people I have an intuition about.  Not many, a few handful of loved ones that I seem to always guess their true intentions even when they put up a wall or a mask.  [Wow, I mentioned Masks.  You would think I was a member of the Reap Team or something...]  I sort of see right through the illusion because, well, I don't know why.  It's a mystery.

I have a friend that I have known for many, many years that I have recently reconnected with.  [And if he sees this blogpost, Lord have mercy on me and help me.]  We spent some time together a few nights ago, and I got a better view into the life he is living.  And, as he is someone I once called my best friend and whom I have fallen in and out of love with for the past 15 years or so, my soul was weeping for him.

Jeremiah 13:17

"But if you will not hear this, my soul shall weep in secret for your pride: weeping it shall weep, and my eyes shall run down the tears, because the flock of the Lord is carried away captive."

I questioned him gently, and he told me his lifestyle made him happy, that this was just how he rolled now.  He couldn't get through 2 minutes without referring to himself with derogatory terms like: freak, whore, etc.  He called himself a bad person.  Even when I reminded him he was a good person, he immediately dismissed my comments.  Even though I was smiling and flirting during our time together because I love him dearly, my soul was weeping.  My heart was breaking.  I was sad for him.  I wanted to say something a little more direct.  But I was afraid, and I kissed him in the doorway and walked away.

My fear of rejection gets in the way all too often. 

Holy Spirit, stir in my soul.

It would be easy to just walk away and not look back to this situation.  But, I'm having one of those moments that I'm feeling God tug on my soul.  It feels similar to when I was first in front of the Blessed Sacrament and ultimately led me to converting to Catholicism or when I was tugged by the Spirit to teach PSR this fall.  It's constantly on my heart, and I need to do something.  But what?

Do I continue to be his friend and preach by example?

Do I confront him?

Do I stay away and just pray for him?

Do I ask others to pray for him (already doing this, btw)?

Do I invite him to spend MORE time with me to do fun things outside of his norm, even if it is super difficult for me?

I need to pray.

Sunday, January 8, 2012


When I have something weighing on my heart or mind, I find driving helpful.  In the past 24 hours, I have driven over 400 miles and haven't really gone anywhere.  While in the car, I typically start by having a dialogue with myself or having a mock conversation with the person who is on my mind.  This may seem silly, but it helps.  Then, I usually find a song that "speaks" to me in that moment and blast it on repeat in my car.  Today, it was this song.

I had never seen the video until just now while I was writing this post, and it reminds me that nothing surprises God.  There are no coincidences.  And, some of the images in the video kinda feel like me.

There is one person in my life that I have so much to tell, and I have no idea how to do it.  While speeding through the farmland and curvy highways, I had a conversation with this person a hundred different ways in a hundred different situations.  Yet, I am still fearful.

There is a huge risk I want to take, yet I'm afraid of undesirable consequences.  I'm afraid of my heart being broken, and I don't know if I can go through that again.

When you watch this music video, you see signs labeled "regrets only" and "rejected."  I'm afraid if I don't say something, I will be that regret sign.  But if I do say something, I could be that rejected sign.  I think the regret would be worse than the rejected.  I just need to figure out how to have a hard conversation.  Possibly, a life changing conversation.


Friday, January 6, 2012

2012 Goals

I gave up doing New Year Resolutions a while ago and traded them in for an opportunity to set goals.  Maybe it's because I work in education and addressing goals is part of my daily life.  But I do know that my good friend at My Purple Brick Road posted her 2012 goals for the world to see, so I thought I would be brave and do the same thing.  So, without further ado, here are some of my goals:

1.  Eat at home.     This is mainly for health and budget issues.  I eat out way too much!

2.  Save more money.     See number 1.  Plus, my student loans are coming due this summer, and it's not pretty folks.

3.  Pay off credit card debt.     It's not much, but it needs to go away.

4.  Take and pass the Praxis Exam.

5.  Work Summer School 2012.  See number 2 and 3.

6.  Go on a date.   It's been too long.     Done!

7.  Build a better relationship with people who annoy me at work.

8.  Read the Bible.

9.  Increase my home preparedness.  This includes several things...

10.  Stop drinking soda regularly.   I'm pretty much addicted to sugar.

11.  Downsize, declutter, and donate.

12.  Watch less mainstream television.

13.  Laugh, pray, and be grateful everyday.

14.  Be more reliable.  Be the person everyone is happy to see everyday.

15.  Be joyful - make it contagious.

16.  Buy seeds early for crops.   MET already!

17.  Get serious about the garden and harvesting.   I tend to get lazy with my gardening.

18.  Learn to save seeds and save seeds for next year.   I have a book.

19.  Create a better food storage rotation system.    Exciting, I know.

20.  Be my best at work, even if it is difficult and some things are out of my control.

21.  Journal/blog more.

22.  Get taxes done early.   Meaning, don't wait until 3 seconds before it's due.  Done!

23.  Hang artwork on the walls at home.  Yes, I have lived here for 3 years and still have many a bare wall.

Plus, I have a few that are more personal and I'd like to keep off of the interwebs.  What are your 2012 goals?

Sunday, January 1, 2012

So Long, Farewell...

The year 2011 has definitely had it's ups and downs.  I sit here on the first day of 2012 reflecting on the things that have happened, good and bad, and wonder about starting anew. 

Why is it that people wait until the end of a year to start things anew?  This has always bothered me.  Every day is an opportunity to reevaluate yourself, goals, attitudes, and start over.

God provides this opportunity every day through Sacraments, love, forgiveness, and the whole reason Jesus died on the cross for us and our sins.

So, for 2012, I will try to remember to wake up every morning remembering the new opportunities for a new beginning daily.