7 Quick Takes – Vol. 58

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Hello again, world! In the interest of maintaining some level of presence around here, I’m jumping back on the bandwagon of these short weekly posts. Here goes!

1.

Life lately: classes, work, eating, sleeping (sort of), events, etc. It’s been pretty normal around here! Summer plans are being made, and it already feels like graduation is getting close with only a year left here. But we’re going to make the most of it!

2.

Speaking of school, my favorite class this semester is Great Catholic Thinkers on Fulton Sheen. It’s hard to describe his awesomeness. My term paper is on suffering through his understanding, which I picked because of so many current events on the issue. People are afraid of suffering, but in the 10+ pages the paper will end up being, I am showing how it’s a beautiful part of life. Two of my favorite quotes?

No human being has a choice of whether he will go through life with or without suffering, because this is to a great extent beyond his control. But each one has this choice: Will the suffering open on a Cross and therefore see the joy beyond, or will it be closed to the Cross and therefore be the beginning of hell on earth.

And:

Which will you sacrifice- - Fulton Sheen

Speaking of Sheen, you can find some of my favorite quotes I’ve made into graphics over on Pinterest!

3.

And Happy Easter! This year I went to the vigil Mass for the third time in my life. Like always, it was amazing. My favorite part is when the lights come on as we sing. SO BEAUTIFUL! I dressed up and went with a couple friends.EditedEaster

 

4.

Then Sunday evening we had a potluck with many people who stayed on campus. It was fun! We decorated and got flowers and colored while hanging out before eating. We are so looking forward to being able to have people over to our apartment next year where we’ll have our own kitchen.

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5.

Here are a few interesting things I’ve read lately:

Birth Control May Alter The Structure Of A Woman’s Brain

– A bit surprising to see something like this on Huffington Post! It’s good to see that more people are realizing that while we don’t have hard facts on everything hormonal contraception does, there are many reasons to be hugely wary of using it on a purely biological level.

Gay Woman Who Donated $20 to Christian-Owned Indiana Pizzeria Reveals Why She Took Bold Stand

– Quite interesting . . . how nice if more people took more of her stance on this! I’ve been seeing people point out that those who are making a stink about these situations are not necessarily people with homosexual tendencies themselves. Often it’s those who consider themselves “allies”. If these allies realized what many homosexual people believe, they wouldn’t have as much a reason to create the hubbub. Many of these people understand what discrimination is like, so it makes sense to me that they wouldn’t want that to happen to other people. It’s not true across the board of course, but so nice to see this underrepresented opinion.

The Truth About Communion In The Hand While Standing

– This can be a touchy subject for some, but to me it’s quite simple: if we believe that the Eucharist is Jesus, then we would do what we can to be as reverent as possible. Can’t kneel for health reasons? Okay, hand it is. Have a highly contagious disease? Okay, hand it is. But otherwise, this is supposed to be an exception – not a norm. The widespread disrespect for the Eucharist is disturbing. But thankfully reverence for the sacred is making a comeback in the youth!

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Want to see a ridiculously cute video? Check this out.

You’re welcome.

7.

 Time to enjoy a lovely weekend, attend some fun events, and get homework done.  Oh! And today is my saint day because it’s St. Gemma’s Feast Day. Yay! If you’ve read any awesome articles this week, or have some thoughts on what I shared, let’s chat in the comment section below 🙂

See you again soon!

To Life,

 

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P.P.S. Check out more quick takes at This Ain’t the Lyceum!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 57: Coffee, mentors, and advent

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Hello world! There hasn’t been much going on here lately because finals.

And papers. And coffee.

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But I am slowly coming back! This semester, while it has not been incredibly challenging academically, has been a time of growth for sure. I’ll share more once finals are over! I’ve gotten back to writing for Live Action News with two articles: one about birth control, and an open letter to abortion clinic clients. Would love to hear your thoughts on them!

— 3 —

Have you been hearing about the CIA torture report? I haven’t read the source document (525 pages . . .) but have been reading about it a lot. People have differing opinions on it, some of which are disturbing to me, but here’s a great report from the USCCB on the topic. I don’t know enough about it to tell you exactly the points that are important to know, but I do know that if we respect life, we should respect ALL life. Also, why do we call it “enhanced interrogation techniques” now?

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Need a lighter topic? Check out these Christmas picture outtakes!

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Something cool going on this semester? Continuing being part of the Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship! Being mentored by Peggy (President of Heartbeat International) has been such a valuable experience for me, and I’ve learned a lot from her. I’ll have to share more on that! Many of us in the program had a video call last week, which was also lots of fun.

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Feeling festive? Here’s a beautiful Christmas video!

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And for my last take, a question: how is your advent going? Do you have traditions for the season? Do share! Here’s a post I wrote on advent the other day. It’s about Jesus as our king, coming as a baby. Enjoy! And let’s chat about your advent!

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 56: Goals, Giving, and School

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Hello new school year! This week I road tripped out to school with my brother who will be a freshman here. It was lots of fun to see our beautiful country and rock out to a custom playlist 🙂

With the new school year starting, I’m jumping back into my goal posts! I’ve been wanting to work constructively on improving parts of my life, so I divided my goals into five different categories. Welcome to my first goal post of the school year – I hope you’ll stick around for more and we can encourage each other!

Each “take” focuses on an aspect of my life. Since it’s nearly the end of August, these will be my goals until the end of September.

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Category 1: Prayer

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After reading this article, I was kind of dumbstruck. Duh. Keep yourself focused, self! So my goal is to eventually increase prayer time by establishing routines. Why? Because it will help keep me focused on what is really important.

1. Find a morning offering to say each morning and/or a good devotional to start my day with

2. Find a night time examination of conscience to say before bed.

3. Sign up for adoration twice a week and start going.

4. Do the Stations of the Cross on Fridays.

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Category 2: Fitness & Health

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Because let’s face it: Being in shape feels awesome. At this point in my life, I have no excuse to not be in shape and take care of my body. So, let’s do this!

1. Look for a 5k to do before Christmas.

2. Find two new healthy snacks to keep in my dorm room instead of traditional unhealthy ones

3. Work out three times a week, and find a consistent time that works. (Sub-goal? Get a new MP3 player and music!)

4. Since my commitments start at 9am M-F, set a consistent time to wake up.

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Category 3: Academics

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“It’s easy to procrastinate” says the girl who stayed up past 3am to finish a paper due in mere hours. I did it twice. I am not proud of that. But am proud to say I’ve never had to pull an all-nighter! The fact is that I need to be responsible. My classes challenge me enough themselves, so I need to rise to the challenge and take advantage of the opportunities to learn.

1. Write down assignments in my planner when I find out about them.

2. Check planner everyday.

3. Buy a stock of post-it’s to put each assignment on, and write them down. Why? It’s fun to tear it up when it’s done!

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Category 4: Computer Usage

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Being away from technology makes me happy. So why do I compulsively check my email probably 25 times a day? It makes me wonder if people really can become addicted to the internet and social media. My usage has improved quite a bit after cutting back on Facebook time by sorting “friends” into lists. Now I check those instead of my general newsfeed. There’s always room to improve, so here goes!

1. Put my laptop on my desk, and only sit there to be on it (unless I am taking it out of the suite to work on it).

2. Gradually check emails less. By the end of September, be checking them three times a day.

3. Check Facebook only twice a day.

4. Go to my Google Alerts for news instead of social media. Add two new alerts.

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Category 5: Reading & Writing

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We all have a lot to learn. I love reading, and it’s something I want to devote time to. Sharing my life and things I learn through writing my own pieces is a great way to develop my thoughts and connect with people. The goals?

1. Find 15 minutes a day to read a non-school book. Focus on one at a time.

2. Write one non-link-up post a week here or for Live Action News.

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Have you read The Giver? I remember checking it out from the library a couple times, but never ended up reading it. The trailer looks really interesting, so I definitely want to see it!

 

What do you think? If you’ve read the book, would you recommend reading it before seeing the movie?

And to end these quick takes . . .

I know there’s a lot going on in the world right now, so please remember to pray for peace. Pray for strength for those who are being persecuted. Pray for everyone who is starting their school year too! And don’t forget: We are the Easter people, and alleluia is STILL our song.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

To Life,

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P.P.S. Did you read about my new approach? Head over and tell me what you think!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 55

Well hello folks! It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these! I was working on redesigning this space 🙂 Do you like it? Danielle and Mary were wonderful help getting it all together. Take a look around and welcome!

— 1 —

Summer is lovely. It’s my favorite time of year! I’ve been enjoying listening to the local Catholic radio station and country music on the way to/from work. It’s so fun to just jam on the way home with my hair down after a day of work. Bare feet, sunshine, ice cream, and so much more make summer so joyful 🙂

— 2 —

It’s been so nice to have time to sleep enough and read. It’s really weird not being tired because I got used to it at school, but I’m definitely liking this! Recently I finished Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It. It was so good that I finished it in 2 days. I highly recommend it for your summer list!

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This. is. happening.

Chick-Fil-A Sauce - come to momma

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I would also like to make this happen:

Hahahaha - who knows where to get giant googly eyes?

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Looking for some cool Catholic stuff? Check out this site I found to get free holy cards!

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I’ve been reading a lot about leadership, inspiring people, etc. lately and though this was rather poignant. It makes such a difference to just learn from people and not worry about getting your two cents in all the time.

Listen

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With more time lately, I’m planning to write more! There are all sorts of ideas brewing about hippie projects to try, open letters to people I disagree with, book reviews, an interview with Bek, and all sorts of stuff coming up! Let me know if you have any ideas too 🙂

P.S. Did you see my recent response post? Share away! Have a happy weekend and for more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 54

Good Friday was the last time I did this? Whoa! Life has certainly been busy lately, and I’ve been at a loss for what to write. But enough with that! Like Nike says: Just Do It.

— 1 —

Life Updates!

Internship week one is over! Thank you again to everyone who contributed to my fundraiser to make it possible. I’m learning a lot about how businesses work and am so thankful to have the opportunity to be involved with so many organizations. It’s also given me some clarity on what I want to do in the future.

Also on the radar: trip to D.C.!! I was chosen as one of SFLA’s 12 Wilberforce Leadership Fellowship members and am pumped to go out there for a training weekend in July! In a few days I’m traveling to a pro-life leadership summit outside of Sacramento I was invited to. Lots of traveling! So many doors have been opened for this summer and I’m so excited to be involved with everything I have the opportunity to be part of.

— 2 —

Something I realized recently: I have COMPLETELY failed on writing monthly goal posts for the last several months. But I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to do with this blog. And I’ll be changing that a bit soon, so keep your eyes open! And if you are feeling awesome, could you please tell me what your favorite posts have been? My modesty and gay marriage posts by far have the most views.

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Books! They are definitely a favorite part of summer for me. There were summers when I was much younger where I’d try to read 100 books. Ever have those competitions at your library where you can win a free book? Oh yeah! Nowadays I read very little fiction (see the titles?) and learn a lot through reading. Have any suggestions? Want any from me?

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Did you see that Sister Christina won Italy’s The Voice? How awesome if that?!?!

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Bored? Need things to do? Check out this list I wrote last year!

conquer summer boredom

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Ladies, want silky soft legs without dead skin? Here’s a leg scrub! I would suggest NOT doing it right after shaving since it has lemon and it could irritate nicks.

2 1/2 cups sugar

1 cup oil (coconut is awesome, but you can do vegetable or olive or something else)

5 TBSP Lemon juice (can substitute other citrus)

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And now, a little motivation for your summer:

Amen

Be awesome!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 53: Jesus

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It’s Good Friday, which means these are being posted on Thursday because ain’t nobody got time foh the internet on Good Friday. In light of the current liturgical time, here are 7 faith-related thoughts or pictures that seemed appropriate.

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C.S. Lewis

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"Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing."

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jesus laid in tomb | ... of Christ meditations provided by Words from Jesus laid him in a tomb

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And one of my favorite Easter & JPII quotes:

"Do not abandon yourselves to despair.  We are the Easter people and Alleluia is our song."

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 52: Gangsta Pope Francis, Missing Class, and Eating Flax

— 1 —

Hello Again! It’s been a while since I’ve written a 7QT. Time to get back on the bandwagon! Life has been busy lately with warmer weather (bring on the sunshine!) and classes (that are going much better than last semester). It’s hard to believe I’m about a month away from being half way done with college.

I did not look quite like this . . .

Lest you think it’s always a walk in the park – this morning (Thursday) I woke up at 8:05. And I have a class at 8 (that I really shouldn’t skip). That was a first! I had woken up early when my roommate was getting ready, but then I didn’t get up yet because I didn’t have to yet. Right. I moved very fast, stuffed my things in my backpack, and so commenced the walk of shame to class. I am never, ever letting that happen again.

— 2 —

This semester has been hard, but it feels like I’ve come so far this year. I’ve learned so much about myself through challenging classes, working with Ravens Respect Life, and generally learning how to deal with people. And that is meant in the nicest way possible. It’s been a pleasure getting to know some awesome people. And others? It’s pushed me to put others before myself and see the good in people even when that’s hard to do.  It’s taught me how to handle conflict better too, and how to be a more gracious choleric person. It’s all been an awesome opportunity in learning to assume the best of other people.

— 3 —

Link love – what I’ve been reading/doing lately:

How you can push back against Mozilla/Firefox’s gay marriage thuggery by Jimmy Akin

Scientific 7 minute work-out timer (super cool!) – let the sweating begin!

What is “cool”? by Kate Bryan

Student’s April Fools prank on professor (with a sort of pro-life twist)

Natural Beauty vs. The Media by my fellow Raven Joslyn

Be Born in Me – latest song on repeat prompted by the recent feast of the Annunciation

And of course a Catholic meme to finish it off:

Is that sacrilegious?

 

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Some of this year’s RRL members (and officers too)

Guess what? We just had elections for RRL, and I’ve been elected as President again. There are many things I plan on doing differently personally, and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to serve in BC’s pro-life ministry with a great team. It’s so neat to see God putting together amazing opportunities!

6476824Speaking of opportunities, there are 3 weeks left in my fundraising campaign! Would you consider supporting me and spreading the word? Just click on the picture to the left to view it. Thank you!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Cute video 🙂

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On the menu:

Recently I made something resembling these. And by resembling I mean: the ingredients are roughly the same but I didn’t really measure so it turned out weird. I ran out of peanut butter so it wasn’t wet enough so it’s more like coated granola. But hey. It works well in yogurt. Another plus? It used some of my leftover milled flax from my hippie fail! Flax definitely reminds me of of the taste of walnuts. It’s getting closer to the end of the year so we’re getting creative with using things like a giant container of Walmart oatmeal up 🙂

Also to be eaten: Amish friendship bread! Without realizing it I started it 10 days before Palm Sunday so we’ll enjoy it then. It’s the first time I’ve ever tried it by making my own starter, so we’ll see how that goes.

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And to finish off these quick takes, here is the video that was going around as an April Fools Day joke titled something like “The Reason Behind Pope Benedict’s Resignation”

Of course it has nothing to do with Pope Benedict (hence being passed around on April 1st). And I have to admit something along those lines has definitely happened in my suite on multiple occasions. It’s getting closer to summer and we’re getting excited!

Have a lovely weekend! For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 51: Down Syndrome, Hippies, and Meditation

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Happy World Down Syndrome Day!

You can read my post about it here, and here is my article about my brother Robert that I wrote last year.

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Life is pretty awesome right now. I got back from my spring break mission trip last weekend and this week we’ve had lovely weather. My second christian moral life exam went fabulously. My laundry is done (now I just have to fold it . . .). I’ve been trying hard to stay on top of things and have cut back my computer usage rather a lot. It’s been glorious 🙂 Yoga started this week (it’s a quarter class, not semester) which has been fun. My balance is not the best, but it’s been neat to discover that I’m much stronger than I have been in the past. Time will tell how my opinion on yoga will pan out, but for now it feels like less intense pilates.

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I never get tired of this video. Well, the song, not the video. The video is pretty weird.

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This meditation based on Mother Teresa’s writing is super beautiful: “When you give Me your sins, you give Me the joy of being your Savior” Read it!

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I’m back on the hippie bandwagon with the baking soda/apple cider vinegar shampoo/conditioner thing (total cost of probably a year’s supply? $1.52), homemade bodywash, and my detergent. I’m planning to try a weird sounding hair gel alternative soon. Any suggestions for what to try next? I’ve seen things for toothpaste and deodorant, but those seem a little more . . . interesting 😉

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Want to be really nice? A family friend is helping me raise money to cover lost funds from taking an unpaid pro-life internship this summer! Go here to support me and share the link with your friends. Your support is much appreciated, and I’ll be updating you with stories here all throughout the summer!

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Aaaaand now a random awesome video . . .

Have a lovely week! For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 50: Life, Lent Awesomeness, and Chucking Laptops

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Tomorrow morning I’m heading out to work with the Missionaries of Charity in St. Louis! As our contact sister told me, they live very simply. They don’t have internet. They start their days at 5am with prayer and have set times for serving the poor during each day. I’m really looking forward to disconnecting from the world a little (*ahem* LOT) because I’m just tired right now. Tired of not sleeping and tired of being busy. Tired of too many things going on. I’ve gotten better at mastering that, prioritizing, and focusing on what’s important, but still. It’ll be so nice to focus on doing good work without the distractions of daily life.

This is me figuratively chucking the noise of life into utter destruction so I can be still on the beach and contemplate life. Watermarks are for dramatic effect.

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Which brings me to an interesting point. I’ve realized in recent months that I am very much an introvert in that I value my time alone reading, writing, adoration, whatever it is. It makes life so much more peaceful. People often think being an introvert means you’re shy, but that’s not necessarily true. It focuses on how you’re recharged. I know that I am recharged by being alone and praying, reading, and writing. Or small groups talking with people. That’s awesome too. It’s true that I was painfully shy as a child. But I’ve worked very hard to overcome that, and I’m fairly certain most people at school would not guess that about me. Being an introvert just means I appreciate the time I have to myself. Of course, there is such a thing as too much time alone, so it’ll be nice to be on this mission trip with some lovely ladies for company!

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It’s really bothering me how many times I’ve used “I” in this post. How do I not write like that?!?!

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Look at them conspiring to get us to waste our lives on their website. HAHA. I beat you! No more wasting time.

Guess what? I actually did one of my Lent/March goals already! All my Facebook friends are sorted into lists and it’s made so much of a difference. I sorted them into my family, non-family that I want to see updates from, college classmates I don’t particularly care to see every update from, and the “Why am I friends with you?” list. I felt kind of bad categorizing people, but now I just open it up and see a few updates from the most important lists, check those, and BAM. Done. If you’re spending too much time on there, I would recommend trying this out!

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Want to be a super awesome person? Help me spread the word about my fundraising campaign to replace lost funds from taking an unpaid pro-life internship this summer! Read more here. If you were to spread the word while I’m away without internet, and I were to come back to an amazing response, that would be quite lovely. Just sayin’ . . . .

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Did you hear the beautiful news about Archbishop Fulton Sheen’s possible impending canonization?!?!?! It’s pretty amazing that we have YouTube videos of a potential saint.

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I can’t think of what else to write here, and it’s time to hit the sack, so have a lovely weekend! See you on the other side of a mission trip 🙂

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes – Vol. 49

— 1 —

Hey. If it includes sunshine, I’ll take it.

The weather here is delightfully bipolar. I almost could have whipped out my shorts when it was 60 degrees a couple days ago. Then yesterday it snowed, hailed, and was sunny! Variety is the spice of life around here 🙂

— 2 —

I’m happy to report that I am past several tests, and glad that they are over! Christian Moral Life was first with a study guide that ended up being 15 pages. I spent a lot of time studying for that with classmates which felt weird because I’ve honestly not done that before. But it paid off. My grade on that was the best I’ve done on any test here so far. Then came statistics which I knew was going to go okay. And it turned out well! Then came accounting and microeconomics back to back which was terrifying considering the amount of studying I should have put in. *sigh* I always feel like I should study more.

Anyway, I had a (figurative) mini panic attack the night before accounting because I had minimal guidance on what was on the test. But I got more info from my professor and breathed a sigh of relief . . . when it was over. I was very happy with that score too (which was better than both accounting tests last semester). I did much better on my micro test than my macro tests last semester which was a big relief. It’s still hard, and I’m going to have to push myself in that class. But I know that from the start and feel better prepared to tackle it.

All of that to say, it feels good to do well. For too long I’ve looked back regretting not applying myself fully, but now? I know I studied hard and it shows. It’s an awesome feeling to earn a good grade by working hard.

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Have you seen this story going around today? The pictures are pretty amazing. I just love seeing stories of people helping people.

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It’s almost spring break!! I’m leading a mission trip to work with the Missionaries of Charity in St. Louis. Mother Teresa has always intrigued me and I’m looking forward to this. You’ll just have to wait till I get back to hear more since I don’t expect to be on my computer 🙂

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Some links to check out:

Brady Surovik: killed without being a person – my latest for Live Action

Only modern pro-life women’s centers can beat Planned Parenthood – excellent article by Abby Johnson (and definitely what I want to do!!)

Shock for woman expecting identical triplets – cute story 🙂

Gay hate crime stories are sometimes made up – enlightening, and quite interesting

The power of forgiveness – beautiful

Olympic athlete sidelined by contraceptive repercussions – scary

What the media won’t report about Pope Francis – Pope Francis rocks

Priests praying for Ukraine victims – a chilling story, but the priests are wonderful to see

What Catholic girls are like in the chapel – Haha

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Is it possible?

I really want to start couponing. But I don’t know how to. It’s just really neat. Anyone have ideas on how you start small?

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This weekend I’m looking forward to not having much to do. Of course, that’s besides sidewalk counseling, 3 different meetings, mass, and homework. Maybe I’ll have time to finally finish a couple books! Oh, and write more. Life has been lovely with the sunshine lately 🙂 How about you?

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!