autumnflowers drawing

I’ve been working on a piece in the wee smas of the day. I haven’t gotten as far as I would have liked this week, but it will come in its own good timing. It has taken me a long time to learn this, to slip into the small moments and use them as well as I can and then move on. It is a far more peaceful way of being, no longer under the gun of what can sometimes be my outlandish expectations.

There have been so many good things around the internet this week.

Molly Sabourin, Grace Here and Now– Just As I Am…

It’s natural when approaching unfamiliar territory to try and make sense of it by observing the natives. I did this when I was first pregnant and living in the city. The circles I ran in happened to be more alternative than traditional, medically speaking,  and the new mothers I saw regularly at my parish and La Leche League meetings were pro-homebirth, breastfeeding, babywearing and kelp eating. These devoted hippie mamas became my tribe. I adopted their philosophies, birthplans, and bohemian style. To me, they were the quinesstential definition of “maternal” and because of that limited perspective I assumed flowy skirts, baby slings and Birkenstocks were the required uniform for new-momness, and vegan lentil stew, kale salad, and honey sweetended carob brownies the required menu.

I have to say, this next post series was an article series that my husband and I could have used in our younger years-so much we had to learn the hard way. I deeply appreciate Bonnie’s willingness to be vulnerable and transparent about this so that others can learn!

Bonnie, A Knotted Life– Financial Hardships and Suprise Pregnancies: An Introduction…

…Yes, we are living this life because it’s the life we’ve chosen. We chose to take out student loans. We chose to pay for things with a credit card. We chose to not contracept or abort any of our babies. Travis chose to go into teaching and I chose to be a stay at home mom (Although daycare for five kids? It wouldn’t even be worth it for me to work!) We have chosen to follow the teachings of the Catholic Church. We have chosen to make these sacrifices because we believe that in the end, no matter how hard things may be now (and how hard it is for even us to see it), it is worth it.

It’s worth it to choose life. It is worthwhile to choose life over death, over the impossibility of more life,  or over things and experiences. And it is worth it because life is worth living.

Could alternately be titled, (yet again) Why I Let My Children Read Harry Potter. (Okay, okay I confess to a little bit of snark with that comment.) I’m amazed at the people who refuse to read it or let their children read it “because of the evil of witchcraft” and yet have no problem with their children reading Narnia or Lord of the Rings. Good is good and bad is very bad and the evil literally wear their sins in their bodies, on their skins, and yet there is light and redemption….oh just go read the article. She’s talking about all sorts of fiction….

Kathleen Shumate for Story WarrenTrue Fiction

I have loved fiction longer than I can remember—“I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun”—and I have hope that the best stories will shape my children as they shaped me. True fiction furthers the Great Story and trains our imaginations to love and yearn for what is good. It is well worth our time.

One of the uncomfortable conversations I have with my children often, perfectly captured and explained.

Tony Woodlief for Image JournalThe Beast Without…

So in the spirit of practicing what I preach about considering how our actions incite others, I think on the conversations my children have overheard, in which I question someone’s motives, in which I denounce some political figure or corporate charlatan, in which I rail against the people tearing down Western civilization.

YES. YES. YES. Kort is on a roll this month, and this one I was getting all old-time gospel religion and hooting and shouting yes as a period for each sentence.

Kort Garrison, One Deep DrawerGood Enough is…Good Enough

I’ve got this idea in the back of my mind that things have to be perfect–the booklist complete, the supplies in hand, the house organized, dinner planned–before I can start.  It’s a fancy way of procrastinating.  It’s a fine way to give into the fear of failing or not quite measuring up.  It keeps me busy enough with the peripheral that I never actually get down to work.  And if affects my homeschooling and my paid work.

It seems I always end with John, but if something ain’t broke, why fix it? You do read him, don’t you? I’ve told you a thousand times about his poetry, so you have no excuse. The harder decision is to pick which one to share with you. This one…just oh. No words. Just read.

John Blase, String Bright the Gray

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