Friday, April 25, 2014

7 Quick Takes, Volume 30

{story of a soul, condensed}

Visit Jen at Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes!




{1} Happy Easter!  I find myself still adjusting to being present during Mass with a baby in tow (I spent most of the Easter liturgy bouncing a cranky Aaron in the back, which was followed by a bathroom nursing sesh where he fell asleep in my arms, on the toilet) (we got there too late to get a pew and please tell me I'm not the only one who's nursed my baby on a public bathroom toilet), but every time I approach the altar for communion I get a renewed sense of gratitude and focus.  We got to spend the day with both of our families--we had a delicious Arabic feast with Andrew's relatives, and then headed to my family's celebration for dessert and sports, if by sports I mean that I, personally, sat in the grass with the baby and my aunts.  Aaron is juuuusst easing his way into solids and I wasn't about to give him any chocolate or anything, but maybe he can have some Easter candy next year.  Maybe.  Oh, who am I kidding.


{2} Also on the subject of Easter: a friend shared this article describing the wonder and immediacy in this painting of Peter and John on the morning of the Resurrection.  I'd never seen it before, and I'm completely captivated.  "Look into Peter’s wide open eyes and John’s intense gaze.  Their eyes contain a mix of anxiousness and hope, the way a parent or grandparent’s eyes look at the news of an impending birth.  A new life is about to emerge, but there is still uncertainty because it is a mystery beyond full human comprehension or control. Peter and John’s faces capture the same sense of anticipation."  Pierce me now.   P.S.  Not to get all Noah or anything but is it just me or does Peter look a little De Niro-esque?

{3} We're headed to West Virginia, our former stomping ground, this weekend to get trained in teaching postpartum NFP.  I'm looking forward to the reunion aspect so much (it's our second time visiting since we moved from the area last summer, we're staying with two of our best friends, and all of the couples we got trained as teachers with, us included, now have little ones!), but I'm also looking forward to actually learning the nitty gritty of the postpartum stuff.  I know it in theory, but putting it into practice still feels a little ambiguous and risky to us.  Maybe by the time our second baby is born getting back to NFP will feel old hat, but for now this will be a very welcome education.

{4} Saint John Paul the Great, you guys.  I'm so accustomed to praying to him as "Blessed John Paul" that switching over to Saint when he gets canonized on Sunday will take some getting used to, I think.  I'm so excited, and I think it's just beautiful that he'll be made a saint on Divine Mercy Sunday, a day that he initiated in the Church and a day that's particularly important to Poland, the home he shared with Saint Faustina.  I just finished reading his biography, Witness to Hope by George Weigl, and though I felt like I knew a lot about him before, I loved all the little anecdotes that made me feel like I actually know him a little more now.  The man made his own ordination holy cards because he finished seminary underground during the Nazi occupation of Poland, was one of the first priests to start Pre-Cana type programs in parishes, ditched the cubicles and chamber pots that were standard at the papal conclave, even in the 20th century, and still hosted his old friends at the Vatican years after his election--before reading that particular detail, I never considered the bittersweet sense of loss and sadness that must come over a beloved cardinal's people when they learn that he'll be leaving them to go to Rome.  Anyway, that joint was long and, in all honesty, not all of it held my interest (there are pages upon pages of diplomatic negotiations and curial politics that just aren't really my thing), but on the whole I loved reading it.  If you're into the smaller stories that make such a great man seem so much more like an everyman, as well as summaries of all of his encyclicals and of Catholic teaching written right into the text, then I definitely recommend it.

{5} And now for some shameless affirmation begging…after my little (or I guess not so little) maternity and manuscript hiatus, I have to wonder if anyone actually checks in on my particular piece of internet these days.  So…holler in the comments if you're still in?  Please?  There is a purpose to this.  I'm thinking of hosting a little wedding linkup soon, only I am hoping there will be a good amount of actual links upped because I love reading about wedding details and the stories behind them.  Are you interested?  Tell me and let's make it happen.

{6} I mentioned a few weeks ago that I am now the nanny to a sweet blue-eyed 14-month-old, and I love watching her and Aaron interact as they both get bigger!  But nap time.  Help.  Just like girls who hang out a lot and all get their periods at the same time, the both of them almost always get tired and cranky at the same time, and they usually wake up within a few minutes of each other, even when they wake quietly.  They also both require a fair amount of soothing or nursing (which I can obviously only provide in Aaron's case) before they'll fall asleep, so it's hard to put them both down when, as I'm bouncing or rocking one of them, the other is wailing away.  Mamas, do you have any advice, aside from desperately repeating the Memorare over and over and copious (copious!) amounts of white noise,  for helping two little ones to sleep at the same time?  I am all ears over here.

{7} For your weekend, a free (unless you want to make a donation) sampler by Josh Garrels, one of my absolute favorite musicians.  He's a wandering, freedom-seeking, poetic soul with eyes for both divine and earthly beauty and he has a new album out later this year; your ears won't be disappointed.  Promise.

Enjoy your weekend and, in the words of Josh himself, "live in the sunshine." 

32 comments:

  1. I'm here! :)

    Your little one is precious - God bless!

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    1. Thank you, Anney! We are so in love with him! And thanks for sticking with me =)

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  2. I'm still here! I'd love to do a linkup... Our anniversary is coming up next month!

    Aaron is so adorable!!! His hair. I love it.

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    1. I find myself rubbing my chin in his hair all day long! The kid gets greasy locks even years away from puberty, haha. Thanks for reading still! I'm planning on doing the linkup next week and would love to have you!

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  3. I'm still here and I'd love to do a linkup! Especially since it's so close to our anniversary :)

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    1. Also your baby is the cutest. I can't believe how big he's gotten!

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    2. Haha, he's huge! Would love to have you link up--look for the deets next Tuesday!

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  4. I'm here! I always love a good link up so count me in!

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  5. I have checked in on you every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday since pre-baby. And you better get back to wedding stuff! I sent your link to a friend marrying in October! And ooh, maybe if my current Mr. Sweet is the one, we will be able to use YOUR book. :D

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    1. Your dedication impresses and humbles me--thank you so much =) I'm excited to get back to wedding posts in the next couple weeks and will say some prayers for your friend's upcoming wedding and for you and the Mr. =)

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  6. I'm still here, and so happy to see you're blogging! You're definitely not the only one who's had to nurse a baby in a bathroom stall, but I stopped doing that after I had Tony. I just sat in the pew, threw a nursing cover over us and no one even noticed. :) Those photos are absolutely gorgeous, and it's such a joy to see your beautiful boy growing up! As far as getting two small babies to sleep at the same time...Alessandra is over a year old and barely sleeping through the night, and still fighting naps like crazy. So yeah, I got nothing! Sorry!

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    1. Haha, ever since your lavender-on-the-feet post I've been obsessively checking your posts to read about Alessandra's sleeping! Aaron's latest trick is flinging off the nursing cover, so even when I have a place to sit during Mass (we didn't on Easter because, in typical new parent fashion, we arrived late), it's risky! Naked without shame, right?

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  7. I'm still reading! I don't have a blog, though, so I won't be able to link up.

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  8. Here! Though not sure if I'd be able to do a link up or not.

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    1. Not a problem; I'm so glad to have you here!

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  10. I stumbled across your blog about a year ago and have been enjoying it ever since! Definitely missed you during the baby hiatus, but was glad your adorable Mr. Aaron was getting mama time. Not sure what kind of link-up you have in mind - since I won't be married until July I'm not sure if I'd be able to help or not, but I love reading them even when I don't do them!

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  11. Happy Easter! Best of luck with the postpartum NFP...rumors have it that it's the trickiest.

    I'm still here, thought not really blogging anymore.

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  12. Have never read your blog before, found it by Googling Catholic wedding blogs! Love what I've read so far!

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  13. I'm here! I am not married, nor planning a wedding any time soon, but I love your blog! From the wedding stuff to updates about your life. :) Keep it coming, girl!

    Happy Easter, btw!

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  14. Hello! Still here - I have a blogger dashboard, so when I check in and you've posted, I see it and click over! Welcome back! Your boy is gorgeous. Def interested in more of the mommy and general Catholic stuff, but love marriage and weddings too - just not as relevant as it used to be in daily life!

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  15. I am here.
    I have a question. My wedding is on the 3rd of May.
    Can I still use a reading from the Old Testament? Or must I use a reading from the New Testament, since we are in the Easter Season.
    Thanks.
    He is Risen!

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    1. Happy Easter! Oh boy, as I write this it's 5 days until your wedding--congratulations!! It'd be good to run this by your priest, but from what I understand, it's tradition that a nuptial Mass follows an ordinary Liturgy of the Word, with the first reading from the Old Testament and the second from the New. I've never heard of Acts being used for the first reading, but I'm sure if a couple asked and it was fitting that'd also be a possibility =)

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  16. You can guarantee I always read your posts. Unfortunately, 99% of the time I read on my phone and over half the time my phone does something weird and won't allow me to comment. I love your Easter photos!

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  17. I've nursed in many places, including bathrooms. Heads up- "nursing stations" at Seaworld actually means a couple of rocking chairs in the corner of the women's room. Best bet at theme parks- head to the first aid station. It's air conditioned and they won't usually turn you away.

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