Wednesday, March 26, 2014

NAS: Deal Breakers and The Feast of Our Lady of the Annunciation

Happy Feast of the Annunciation.  I am so incredible thankful for everyone who wished me a happy feast day.  I wish I would have come up with some sort of blog event since this here blog is obviously named in honor of Our Lady of the Annunciation but next year.  If you want to know a little bit more about why I love Our Lady of the Annunciation so much check out my guest post about her at Sarah's blog, Footprints on my Heart. 


We have all thought about our list of qualities for our future spouse (and maybe even religious community), but sometimes those can be pretty limiting on who God has planned for you. Instead, maybe think about the few things that are so important to you, that if a guy you were considering dating (or community you were entering) didn't have those things, you would have to move on. Why are those things important to you?

A few years ago I was reading How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your Soul and was inspired to come up with list of what I wanted in my future husband.  The most interesting thing about this little activity was that everything that immediately came to my mind  was about what he would do rather than really pinpointing who he was.  At the heart of the matter it doesn't matter if my husband will be awesome in the early postpartum weeks, take out the trash, or tell me I am beautiful.  What does matter if his actions reflect an authentic sacramental love for me and if who he is as a man will help lead me to heaven.  When it all boils down those are the deal breakers.  The things that I will not compromise because eternity with Christ is a big deal.  I really want to say deal breakers include him being responsible with money, have a daily mass devotion and be ok with my homebirthy/crunchhippy self but I know and have faith that the Lord works through any of our boundaries if it is His will.   So really I just pray that I have eyes to see the man the Lord has for me to marry, to enter into that sacrament of marriage and to journey to heaven with.

This is nothing that I planned for this post to be.  I really did plan on talking about daily mass devotion, breastfeeding and baby wearing, balancing the budget and my ideal master bedroom but what a lesson it is to remember that all these things are just ways that the Lord romances me through my husband's compatibility and understanding.    That my husband will love me for who I am including all my quirks, desires and dreams.  My deal breakers are weak and fluid but my desire for heaven is strong.   

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

Confessions of a Crunchy Hippy

This is something that has never really come up here on this here bloggity but I confess.....I have crunchy hippy tendencies.  I don't dress like a hippy at all but I do have a really strong desire to get dreads.  I try to accept that my hair isn't the kind of hair that dreads well but I still wish and hope that one day I will have beautiful dreads.

I grew up in a house that recycles.  Each week on garbage day we only have one small trash bag because we recycle paper, plastic, plastic bags, and soda cans and we compost everything from vegetable peelings to coffee grounds. I can't imagine not always being like this.

I use cloth ziplock bags for most snacks, sandwiches and stuff.  You can buy them all over etsy.  They are simply cloth sacks with PUL on the inside and a zipper closer.  They don't keep snacks from getting stale so you can't pack them very far in advance. And when they get dirty or every few uses just throw them in the wash, hang them to dry and they are as good as new. Bonus you can pick so many cute prints!  My favorites are my squirrels running up a tree sandwich bag and chevron snack bag. I love the ones from this etsy shop.

Cloth napkins.  Awesome.  Obviously living in the dorms with coin laundry and eating in the caf for most of my meals I don't use them yet.  However, I have already been collecting cloth napkins from thrift stores for when I am living on my own.  I like cloth napkins because I am a messy eater who likes to keep my fingers and face clean but also because I just like the reusable aspect of them.  And with that also kitchen towels.  I had a roommate who flew through paper towels and it drove me nuts.

I could go on and on about the things I do.  Some are obvious like water bottles rather than plastic, travel coffee mugs.  One thing I don't do is reusable K-cups for my Keruig coffee maker.  I know, I know it wastes so much but I am also a huge coffee snob.  You see the K-cups you buy are so good because they are vacuumed sealed, sealing in yummy flavor and thus produce a better cup of coffee. So sorry earth but I like my coffee.

And then there is essential oils which is an entire post of its own.  Thieves on my feet, peppermint for indigestion and nausea, lavender to help me take my pre night turn naps and for inflammation, stress relief for tension headaches, and breathe easy for a cold.  Whenever I use them and walk around wing one of my household sisters always comments, "You smell like a hippy." The oils are awesome and you have to hold me to an entire post about them.  Anyone else using them?

Monday, March 17, 2014

NAS: Single Life Bucket List

Single Life Bucket List
What are those things that you want to do before you get married (or enter the religious life)? Is there anything that you are excited to do, accomplish, etc before engagement, marriage and babies come along? Even if you feel that you've done everything you wanted to do pre-marriage, dig deeper and see if there isn't anything you'd like to do!

If you didn't read about it yet I got to meet Jen who blogs @ Jumping in Puddles and obviously co-hosts the Not Alone Series during my time in Florida this past week.  What an awesome surprise blessing!

I really like the topic this week about things we want to accomplish through this single season of our lives.  Of course this life is not my own so however long the Lord wants me single I will do what I can and praise Him for it.  Before I become a wife and mom their are a handful of simple not so simple things I want to accomplish....
  1. Sleep....and lots of it. When you get married little bundles of babies inevitably follow and for the next 20 years you are waking up with babies and toddlers who don't know the art of sleeping in.  As a single lady I try to sleep in and take naps sometimes.  When I roll back over I punch my fist into the air and say "for the moms." 
  2. My career.  I know that I am not a nurse by accident or coincidence.  It has been a long difficult journey to be almost down with nursing school.  I am confident the Lord has big plans for my career and I want to achieve His will before and/or during my vocation as a wife and mommy.   
  3. Take good care of my body.  We are both body and spirit and marriage and motherhood will require both.  I want to form good habits now that include eating well, exercising and generally taking care of my body so that it can be a gift to my husband and children.   
  4. Be completely and utterly in love with the Lord.  The foundation of any marriage requires both the husband and wife to know the Father's love.  Being loved and loving the Lord is a continual process that will never stop however as a single lady I am in a unique position to devout undivided time and attention to my prayer life and relationship with the Lord.   
  5. Travel. I pray and hope that the Lord has more travel plans in store for me.  I have already been blessed to travel all over Europe, Haiti, and Central America but I hope I am able to travel moe-back to Haiti, back to Europe, and hopefully hike the Camino, that doesn't even mention trips I want to make in the States. 
  6. More wine nights with girls.  You are only young and single once so why not have more wine nights with the girls filled with good conversation and soul sharing. 
This is in no ways an exhaustive list, I am sure I have forgotten things and it does assume that somewhere along the line of being married babies will come (as the nursey rhyme goes, first comes love....) but these are some of the things that I want to accomplish before (and in same ways through) the wedding bells ringing.
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Saturday, March 15, 2014


So if you follow me on Instagram you know I have taken spring break down to Florida.  Because honestly this winter has been rough and I am on my senior year spring break so why not run down to Florida.  Even crazier, we left Wednesday, drove 22 hours (5 hour detour.  Lesson learned: if someone says they don't like a GPS telling them what to do make then use it anyway.), arrived in Florda at noon on Thursday and have to leave on Sunday morning for what will hopefully only be a 17 hour drive back.  Yes we drove through the night and yes we stuffed five people in a hybrid Prius.  Yeah for great gas mileage not so great for comfort.  I came down with a friend who is in my nursing class and soon a household sister, mom who is the advisor to our household (and I am close with) and their two sisters/daughters.  

People who are still stuck in the North look away.

But guys the weather down here is amazing and the beach is the cure all for cabin fever/perpetual coldness/my wrists haven't seen the air since October.  

I can tell you all about the trip and going to Ave Maria and such when I am back but I wanted to let you know that I got to meet a blog friend in real life!!!!  I posted a picture of us going down to Naples on the gram and Jen Cox @Jumping in Puddles enthusiastically informed me that is where she lives.  We had to figure out a way to meet, we were so close.  

I could only do so much because I was with four other people but after a lot of back and forth we figured out that it was best if Jen stopped over at the house we were staying at while we were changing and showering after the beach before we went out to Ave Maria (yeah I know of course the Frannies go to Ave.  Birds of a feather flock together).  Even though it was a quick visit it was sooo awesome to meet Jen.  Honestly if you are ever near Naples make sure you can meet up with Jen.  We talked about nursing stuff and life in Florda.  I am so thankful we were able to make it happen.  

Photographic proof.  Thanks Jen for driving out to see me! I am so thankful we are now IRLF friends too!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

The Duggars

When the Duggars (like the 19+ kind) come up, people normally have an opinion.  Even within the NFP practicing Catholic camp.  People like to say they have too many kids, dress too weird, yada, yada.  In honor of their new book Growing Up Duggar (affiliate link), which came out on March 4th, I just wanted to tell the blog world that I really really like the Duggars.  Yeah they do have alot of kids and yeah sometimes they dress a little weird but I think their faith is genuine.  This is my opinion for anyone who cares.

I have read both of their books (The Duggars: 20 and Counting! and A Love that Multiples) and watched their show from the beginning.  If that is not the real them then they are really good actors, because their message and beliefs haven't changed in the least since they were brought into the public eye.  I am confident that they really do love each and everyone of their children and that they trust God with the number of children they have.  They deal with finances responsibly and strive to raise their children to be well-adjusted Christian adults.  Michelle is a mother who cherishes her children and inspire others. Jim-Bob, though sometimes a little heavy on the hairspary, is a real man who strives to be the husband and father the Lord calls men to be.  I still haven't felt called to not wear pants, I think we can't blame the problems with Josie's pregnancy all on the number of pregnancies Michelle has had, and my hair will probably never look like Michelle's.  

I also wanted to leave you with the post that spurred this all. The today show has always been sharing the Duggar's news with America. Recently they posted an article, "19 reasons why Michelle Duggar loves her body, even after 19 kids."  As a young woman who children haven't left their mark on yet this post still reminds me that I am made in the image and likeness of God. I can't wait to read their new book and I will continue to watch their show.  Any other Duggar likers out there?

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Tuesday, March 4, 2014

NAS: Bachelorette Party Ideas

It's inevitable that we will plan our friends bachelorette parties at some point or another, but how do we make them fun without all the raunch? Give us your ideas for fun things to do with a bridal party without all the crazy.

If you have been around this blog for a while you know that I went to 5 wedding this past summer. And of course the weddings aren't just the ceremony and reception.  As a lady you are also often invited to the bridal shower and bachelorette party.  I am in the often unpopular club of "I love going to showers and bachelorette parties!"  Yeah they involve spending money on gifts but these parties' games bring out my competitive side and my mind begins to look like that Field Hockey scene from Mean Girls.  Also I love the whole get dressed up and watch someone open gifts thing.  You are allowed to call me crazy.  

Anywho there are two comments I want to make about Bachelorette Parties.  Know that when I say Bachelorette Party I do not mean bar hopping and strippers.   I mean girls' night, winery, sash/crown, personal gifts, etc.  The first, and probably the best idea I have ever come across addresses the whole drinking thing.  So you know how Bachelorette parties normally involve some short of "how well do you know your groom" and other such quizzes to stump up the bride?  And you know how the bride if she gets it wrong is supposed to take a shot?  Yeah, that could turn into a
stumbling bride in no time.  Instead, may I suggest swigs of a mixed drinkSame concept, different results.  The genius of making the bride drink a mixed drink is that if she gets more than a couple wrong she still has drunken enough to feel it but not enough to be friends with the porcelain throne.  Your welcome.

Secondly, lingerie.  Most of our good friends have striven for chased relationships through the game of dating.  They have said no, stayed modest, and read Theology of the Body.  Now they are getting married and consummation and the marital act will ensue.  Get the girl some pretty panties and bras.  Celebrate marriage as it was meant to be.  Giggle at the fact that a boy now gets to see her bra.   Though Victoria's Secret might be that Target has some beautiful options that are way more in budget.   


I also linked up @Amongst Lovely Things with her "Funniest Post".  I try to be funny but when I write I normally fall somewhere between not funny at all and a quick smirk. If Sarah can post two posts I figured I could too.  The  winners were #chorniclesnightshift and The Five Stages of Finals. Go check it out if you want a little smirk.   

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