7QT Good Friday–serious topics, serious sugar

1. I’ve been reading Interior Freedom by Fr. Jacques Philippe.  It brings up some of the same points that are in Grace for the Good Girl by Emily Freeman. It’s always a good sign when you hear the same message from very different sources (one a French, Roman Catholic priest, the other an American, married, Protestant woman).  I wanted to share some quotes with you–it would make this post at least generally apropos for Good Friday–but then I misplaced the book.

2. I followed the Candida diet for March, the less-restrictive version anyway.  It’s basically–no added sugar whatsoever, no fruit, no refined starches, no alcohol.  The idea is to starve off excess yeast in the body.  I had one major cheat but overall substantial compliance, which was a lot better than my no-sugar attempt in January.

I didn’t lose any weight, nor did I experience any noticeable improvements in health.  Bleh.  I was hoping to lose some weight  because that diet was really really hard.  I am so weak.

On the upside, though, it did loosen sugar’s grip on me.  Even though I had a big binge for a couple days when I ended it, I’ve since gone back to a very low sugar, low carb, way of eating, and it’s not nearly as hard as it used to be.  I eat a bunch of eggs and beef, as many vegetables as I can manage, lots of avocado, some rice and potatoes, limited dairy, and I feel great.

3.  Until this evening, anyway, when the girls and I had an Easter treat-making extravaganza.  Now I’m having heart palpitations from the sugar in all the frosting I sampled:






4. We picked up a copy of Family Circle’s March issue

and the girls bamboozled me into making the treats featured on front.  I never do this type of thing but here we are.  I think I’m a softie.

Fortunately, they are thrilled with the results.  Girl 1 doesn’t even mind that little sister couldn’t form flowers on the cake that looked like the picture in the magazine.

5. Just now?

“He’s got the whole wor-rld/ in his hands/ He’s got the whole wor-rld in his hands. . . . Mommy, does God really have the whole world in his hands?”

“Uh, no not really.  But God is bigger than the whole world.  And he’s taking care of the whole world.”

“Where is God.”

“uh . . . in heaven.  But he’s here with us too”

“Does God really get nailed to the cross?”

“Uh, he did, on Good Friday.”

I’m not ready for all this; I’m really not.  I guess I need to buy a catechism book for her?  Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is wonderful but it’s not comprehensive at this stage.  I feel like Girl 1’s conception of God, heaven, earth, death, the afterlife, the universe and everything is very confused.  The education she’s gotten from me has been haphazard, at any rate.

6. Blog posts I’ve thinking about lately: The He/She Generation by Joseph Sciambra

when civilization is in decline there is always a rabid return of superstition; a form of moral panic occurs when society throws off all traditional means of self-regulation and censorship: the Church and the force of public decency are disregarded and silenced.

Currently, the most popular and widely apparent form of this reaction towards a slip into barbarism is the phenomena of tattooing, piercing, and body modification. These forms of self-flagellation are an attempt by the unknowing penitent towards order; a desire to recreate the body in an age when life is becoming more and more anaesthetized and disassociated.  [This reminds me of scenes in the book, Children of Men by P.D. James.]

Crossing gender is the most extreme example of this need to make sense with our bodies out of the present-day senselessness.

and also his post on The Gay Michelangelo: A Portrait of the Artist’s Lifelong Struggle With Same-Sex Attraction (is this historically accurate?  I suspect it’s a debated topic but obviously the author has researched it more than I)–this author has a perspective unlike that of anyone else I’ve read; his writing is clear-sighted and far-reaching and poignant and gets to the heart of things; the subject matter of some posts is extremely explicit and disturbing.

On a lighter note: Would You Like Fries With That? and its follow up What We Have a Right to Expect From College: what is the point of a Catholic higher education?  Does it have to be all liberal arts?  Does everyone need to study the liberal arts?  Lots of good questions here.

7. I hope you all have a blessed Good Friday and a lovely Easter!  Click over to Kelly for more quick takes posts (if she’s doing 7QT on Good Friday?  Perhaps not.  We’ll see.)

Liturgical Correctitude

The perfect valentine1. “Oh I’m so excited that tomorrow is Valentine’s Day!  . . . But then we have to wait a long time until Easter.”

2. “That’s right.  First we have to get through Lent.”

3. ::Blank stare::

4. “Lent is the season of preparation for Easter.”

5. ::Blank stare::

6. “Just like Advent is the season of preparation for Christmas.”

7. “Oh!  And like October is the season of preparation for Halloween!”


Yes, just like that, Girl 1.  Just like that.

{{Linking up with Kelly for Seven Quick Takes}}


Easter 2014

How To Have a Classy Christmas

— 1 —

How was your Christmas?  Ours was just lovely.  My girls are now almost 5 and almost 2, and it is such a sweet age.  They get excited about the presents but aren’t greedy.  The first gifts they opened were Cinderella coloring books, and they sat reading them page by page before moving on to another gift.

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And Girl 1 was so excited to see Baby Jesus in the manger scene here at home, and in the one at church.

— 2 —

I have a few tips on having a classy Christmas:

Send out Christmas cards emblazoned with the logo of your favorite retailer:


— 3 —

Cut down a tree with a skinny trunk, so you can use guy wire to hold it up.


— 4 —

Show your daughter the movie Cinderella, shortly before hanging up your favorite glass slipper tree ornament.

“I’ll make it fit!”


Leave other breakable ornaments in her reach.  A decapitated ballerina mouse is a nice touch.


— 5 —

Keep your decorations simple.

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— 6 —

Don’t worry about the rest of the house.


— 7 —


Come down with a cold.  Sit around the house sniffling for two days after Christmas, red-nosed and bedraggled, sharing germs with your visiting brother.


 Do not–under any circumstance–pick up any toys.

Stay classy y’all!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!


Christmas Cheer

Merry Christmas!  I have waited so long to do this post, but life has gotten in the way.  Here are our Christmas decorations this year.  I highly recommend watching the photo montage (under 2 minutes!) to listen to Girl 1’s Christmas song improvisation.  But I’ll post the photos separately too.

Finally, here are some photos of Pat’s and my first Christmas tree together.  He got creative with our makeshift tree topper.

Pat used invisible tape.

Pat used invisible tape.


We lived on a steep hill that year.

"Invisible."  Yeah.

“Invisible.” Yeah.

I haven’t replaced it yet, probably because we enjoy reliving the memories so much.  Like so:

I’m joining Katie at NFP and Me for her Christmas decorations link up.  Thanks, Katie, for hosting!  And thanks for keeping your link up open until Christmas, for stragglers like me.  (And if you’re like me and thinking, “Who has the chutzbah to call her blog that?  Well, you’ll just have to check it out.)

Merry Christmas!  God bless us every one.

Simple Christmas

In the same vein as yesterday, I share with you a link to an article about keeping Christmas simple, from one of my favorite blogs.  She has the right attitude toward Jesse trees those things of which we do not speak.  Really thought-provoking.  And here’s an illustration of where I am in my Christmas preparations:

Substitute “blogged” for “took a shower.”


Simple Advent

I don’t have much time to write between now and Christmas because of, well, Christmas, plus some work responsibilities (bad timing, huh?).  But I do want to share this:



and this article by Simcha Fisher on keeping Advent simple.  She does mention Jesse trees those things of which we do not speak, but it’s still a good article.


What I Wore for Thanksgiving

I was tempted by Grace Patton’s What I Wore to Thanksgiving link-up but not really planning to join.  (Three posts in a week about my clothes??)  But I put an outfit together this morning that I was pretty happy with, and I felt all cute and Sarah Vickers-ish.

Sweater: Vintage (from my late grandmother’s closet, complete with moth holes)
Shirt: Old Navy
Jeans: LOFT
Boots that I love so much they have their own post here

Then I checked my blog reader as my rice was cooking, and realized I was actually emulating Julia Patton.














So I just had to share.  This is what I actually wore when I sat down at the dinner table.  By that point, the baby had vomited her dinner onto my prior outfit.  Guess that’s the price I pay for vanity.

T-shirt: stolen from my sister-in-law

Some might ask, “What kind of mother spends time on Thanksgiving having her picture taken when there is food to make?”  Relax, it’s not like my kids were reduced to gnawing on my boots or anything.