Wise Lenton Words

Matthew Kelly’s “Best Lent Ever” reflections have stopped me in my tracks more than once. Here are two quotes I paused the videos for while I searched for pen and paper to write down his wisdom:

“Multitasking is the great enemy of awareness.”

What?! I used to praise myself for being a multitasking queen. Checking two things off of my to-do list was always better than one. I was even working on something while I played this video, so I felt like Matthew Kelly was calling me out. Rightly so. This statement made me really think about being present in each moment. This is a huge challenge for my task-driven-self, but I’m working on it. Besides, I’ve read multiple articles that state “multitasking is a myth”.

“If you want convenience, you should stop trying to be a Christian right now.”

This statement brought me back to a blog topic just weeks ago. The motivational quote, “I never said it would be easy, I said it would be worth it” applies to everything in life. If we’re willing to work hard for degrees, financial freedom, and physical fitness, why is our faith life any different? For me this means if I can make time to read novels and run multiple times a week, I can make time to study God’s word.

St. Patrick’s Day 2017

Don’t be fooled by Elijah’s serious face in this photo. He’s just disappointed we made him stop moving for a photo. This kid wants to walk! He is getting more and more brave, and he is getting faster! We’ll be buying him green running shoes in no time. 😉

We spent our St. Patrick’s Day celebrating with leprechaun cookies, Guinness, Irish family, and fish and chips.

Since tomorrow begins Birthday Week, the celebration in our house continues!

Lucky Every Day

Last year I celebrated the Irish holiday while patiently waiting to see if my son would share his birthday with St. Patrick’s feast day. We all know the ending- Elijah wanted his own day and Good Friday was even more fitting for a miracle baby.

This year, I woke up to Elijah’s sweet cries from his crib. After a bottle, he curled up on the couch with me and snuggled in to go back to sleep. I couldn’t ask for a more precious son, and he is the best at snuggling. I’ve taken full advantage of these sweet times over spring break, and going back to work will be hard on both of us next week.

We’ll use the excuse of St. Patrick’s Day to consume a few extra treats (and Guinness) today, but we know we’re lucky to have this Irish blessing every day.

“Lifting the Ban”

If you’re Catholic and Irish, the Lenten “obligation of abstaining from eating meat” may be lifted in your archdiocese tomorrow. While people including my husband are thrilled with permission to consume meat on one of the Fridays during Lent, I think it’s criticizable (and I’m Irish and Catholic).

If you gave up alcohol for Lent does tomorrow count? What if it’s green beer? Guinness?

I’ve blogged about my struggle with this “sacrifice” before, and my stance remains. 

If giving up meat on Fridays during Lent is supposed to be a sacrifice, why would the “ban be lifted” for a celebration. What about other celebrations that fall on Fridays during Lent? Just because other celebrations don’t come with the traditional corned beef and cabbage doesn’t mean they don’t include meat on their menus. Christians are told standing up for the faith is not easy, so wouldn’t this be an opportunity to ask Catholics to face this challenge and commit to their Lenten sacrifice in one of the tougher times within the season?

I’m not judging anyone who eats meat tomorrow or any Friday during Lent. My assumption and hope is that you’re doing something even more meaningful to strengthen your relationship with God.

Shamrock Shoes

These shoes sold out as soon as they hit the market. Thankfully my husband knows his way around shoe sites, and he found a pair available and in my size.

My feet and shins are picky when it comes to running shoes. Remember the bleeding toenails and shin splints when training for marathons? Brooks has been a better fit for me the last couple of years. The fact that these shoes were designed by Brooks in the Launch style was a sign they would be a perfect replacement for my old running shoes. I couldn’t resist.

They even say “Kiss Me, I’m a Runner” inside!

They arrived just in time for St. Patrick’s Day!

Thanks for helping me “up my shoe game”, John!

The Magnolia Story

I don’t buy very many books because I have a hard time justifying the cost when the library is full of books I haven’t read. The library didn’t have The Magnolia Story, and I’m glad I splurged.

If you’re not familiar with Chip and Joanna, they star in HGTV’s show Fixer Upper. The show follows these two as they help someone else find a home and remodel it to be their dream house. Their renovations are incredible! They are located in Waco, Texas with their four young children.

Even if home remodeling isn’t your thing, this book has an element for every reader. It is mostly told from Joanna’s perspective, but some chapters are all Chip. These two share their love story among all the challenges it took running a business and flipping homes. The financial struggles these two overcame is almost as inspiring as the advice Joanna offers to couples and mothers. The irony of this TV couple is that they have never owned a TV in their home. They were given marriage advice to live the first six months of marriage without one, and they’ve never turned back. The stories of Joanna talking about raising their children and watching Chip be a dad had me laughing out loud. Joanna even inspired me to clean out one of my kitchen cabinets and devote it to whatever Elijah wants to throw in there, even if that means him crawling in and out of it.

The other element I love about this book is their faith and trust in God. Through the struggles and among the blessings and fame, these two praise God.

The show highlights how much energy these two provide to one another while working side-by-side. The book is honest and inspires even more passion for life from the reader.

If you’re looking for a glimpse into their story, here is a blog post from 2012 on Design Mom that features Joanna and their beautiful home.

My college housemate lives in Waco, Texas, and a visit is overdue. I’m adding a trip to the Silos and Magnolia Market to my travel plans if we can ever coordinate our schedules.

Baby Lewis

Saturday offered an opportunity to meet up with my friend Kathleen and meet her son Lewis. Happy parents = happy babies. Lewis is one smiley babe! We were friends immediately!

Thanks for letting us visit, Kat! Elliot, thanks for letting Elijah play with your train set.

A summer playdate for these three boys is a must, because I miss their mom too much!

Feelings about March

I’ve spent some time over the last few days rereading my posts from last year at this time. They were filled with excitement as we awaited Elijah’s arrival. I even posted that it would be fitting for Elijah to be a Holy Week baby. God only knew…

It’s so hard to believe a year ago I was wrapping things up at school to be done until August. Our bodies are so incredible that if it weren’t for photos, it would be hard to believe this was taken less than a year ago on my last day of work.

As spring break begins, my heart is full to spend it with my baby. Not a day goes by where I don’t give thanks for the blessing he is in our lives. March is an extra special reminder.

 

 

Weekend

If you have snapchat, do you ever feel like you don’t need to blog because you documented and shared it already? I forgot to take pictures of the highlights of last weekend, but they are still worth sharing.

Since the girls’ basketball team advanced to state, Friday’s classes were cancelled. John ended up taking the day off so we could spend it together. Against my guilt, John dropped Elijah at daycare so I could get some school work done in the morning while John got in a quick workout. The rest of the day was ours! A lunch date and Williamsburg for shopping and more treats gave us interrupted and unplanned time together. We finished our Friday by watching The Girl on the Train. Have you read the book or watched the movie? I give both of them a 7 out of 10.

As if a date day didn’t spoil me enough, Saturday included a girls’ afternoon with Sara and Katie. Pedicures, cheese wantons, and my two best friends made for a perfect Saturday afternoon. I love these women, and we have lots to talk about since we all have little boys at home. How funny is that?!

The only thing I did take photos of over the weekend was our family coffee date. Dunkin Donuts just released a new beverage: Sweet and Salted Cold Brew. After I received the drink, the manager instructed me to stir the whip topping into the drink (since it’s basically salted whip cream) to get the full flavor. It was excellent! I’m predicting it to be my summer drink.