Thursday, May 31, 2018

Finding My Chill, Part One: Type A for Anxious

After Alexander was born, I struggled with anxiety and panic attacks for a couple of years, to the point where it was interfering with my daily life - my choices, my actions, my future plans.  I did talk with my doctor about it, got some medication to have "in my pocket" which made me feel better, but tried to change small things in my lifestyle before jumping on the daily medication bandwagon.  I didn't want to reach that point, and luckily my anxiety wasn't severe enough to warrant it.  I've slowly been able to mostly overcome it, thanks be to God, in baby steps with small lessons learned along the way.  So this is a tale of my journey to finding my chill again.  (Should I include a disclaimer about how mental health issues are a real struggle, as much as any physical health issue, and anyone who finds themselves feeling depressed or anxious should consult a doctor, which I am not?  Or do you all already know that?  You do.  Great!  Moving on...)


Monday, May 28, 2018

Memorial Day Parade in Photos

We are so lucky to have our town's Memorial Day parade pass right in front of our house, so all we have to do is dress patriotically and show up!

My littlest Patriots :)

Monday, May 21, 2018

A Royal Recipe to Feed a Crowd: Chicken a la King

I made Chicken a la King for dinner this weekend, inspired by the Royal Wedding of course!  You all think Prince Harry was telling Meghan that she looked amazing, but what you don't know is that he really said "Colleen's Chicken a la King is amazing" which was kind of awkward, so the media portrayed this instead.

It's a real crowd pleaser in our house, I have always loved it and even chose it as my bridal shower lunch way back when.  I have  had requests to share some big family meals that everybody likes, are healthy-ish, and won't break the bank.  This is a good one!  I usually start making it the day before I plan to serve it, because I cook the chickens, but you can always just use a rotisserie chicken or quickly cook some chicken breasts - it's super adaptable!  This is less of a "recipe" and more of a "suggestion" because I never measure or make it the exact same way. Just read through it and you'll get the general idea of what to do!  Here goes:

Friday, May 18, 2018

7QT: A Pope, An Anniversary, A Tour and a Tale


Happy Birthday Pope Saint John Paul II - I love you and miss you! 

How do I always remember that it's his birthday today (besides that he's my heavenly boyfriend and I'll be sitting next to him IF I ever make it to heaven)?  Because Phil and I wanted to get married on his birthday back in 2002...

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Spring Cleaning (Again) and Life Has Meaning (Again)

For Mother's Day, I asked the kids to clean my van as a gift to me.  Really, I should be more particular about the state of my van, but mostly the junk collects and the dust accumulates until I can't take it anymore and we do a big family clean out.  I'm just realizing if I ask for a car cleaning as my Mother's Day gift, Christmas gift and birthday gift, I'll have a clean car tri-annually (I guess that's not a word?).  

Anyway, the day after it was cleaned, I filled it up with gas and bought an air freshener to hang.  Can I just tell you that every time I get into my car, I take a deep breath and smile?  It's true.  My dad always says when his truck is clean, he feels like it runs better.  That's also true.  Just keeping this little space of mine clean and fresh is bringing me so much joy and peace.  It's like Ahhhhhhhh, I can even breathe better!  I love life again!!

Friday, May 11, 2018

7QT: Brooklyn 99, Martin 5k, and 3 Book Winner

Happy Almost Weekend!!!


The news that seriously bummed me out this morning...Brooklyn 99 is being cancelled!!  Guys, this is my favorite show on TV right now, Phil and I literally laugh out loud at every episode.  They did this opening a couple of weeks ago, perhaps the funniest opening of a show I've ever seen:

If you don't watch this show, please get a Hulu subscription and binge on every episode.  I'm really thinking that they will get picked up somewhere else, because it's just too good!!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Heroism in the Ordinary

I have the privilege of working with a whole bunch of really nice, really diverse colleagues.  One of my closest friends at work is old enough to be my mother, (well maybe just an aunt) but she feels so motherly that many of us think of her that way.  She spends everyday after work visiting her own mother, who is suffering from Alzheimer's, and helping her elderly dad and the nursing staff with anything needed.  In her limited spare time between these two "jobs", she babysits her grandkids to allow her son and his wife to go on dates, go grocery shopping alone, or even just to have a break.  She might think that what she's doing is just "being a mom/daughter/grandma" but I think she's heroic.  

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Things I Wish I Liked But Just Don't

Do you ever feel like there's things that everybody (and their mother) like but you can't even pretend to enjoy?  It happens to me all the time.  

As a grown woman in the last year of my thirties (sob!) I feel that I should like the following...

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

The Final Question: Are You Prepared to Accept Children Lovingly From God?

Her in a beautiful white gown.
Him in a handsome tux.
Their friends and family watching with hearts full of joy.

A priest begins to speak...

"Have you come here to enter into Marriage without coercion, freely and wholeheartedly?"  
"I have", answer both sweethearts, gazing into each other's eyes.
"Are you prepared, as you follow the path of Marriage, to love and honor each other for as long as you both shall live?"                        
"I am", they answer again in unison, unable to control their affection for one another.

"Are you prepared to accept children lovingly from God and to bring them up according to the law of Christ and his Church?"
Silence.  With panicked looks in their eyes, they both whisper "I am" knowing that's the last question they have to answer before they can get married already.  Let's just focus on our marriage, they think, we will worry about starting a family later.

Friday, May 4, 2018

7QT: Sacraments, Saints, and Stretching

Happy FRIDAY!!!!


John-Paul got Confirmed on Wednesday evening!  He is now John-Paul Michael Martin. 

Congrats to these cute 9th graders!

My goddaughter (and JP's cousin) received the Sacrament together

With his awesome sponsor, Haley

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

A Winner! and MAY I Suggest Some Mother's Day Gift Ideas?

The winner of the Three New Catholic Books Giveaway is...

Jessica Ruehle

Congrats Jessica!  Email me your address and we will get the books sent right out.  Thanks!

Since it's already May (what? how?) and Mother's Day is right around the corner, MAY (get it?) I suggest a couple of items for the special mother in your life?  Let's do this along the themes of the Five Love Languages so you can make sure you are showing her love in the way she appreciates the most...