Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Strange Happenings in the Land of Laura

The Land of Laura is an interesting place. (I just decided that the Land of Laura is the name of the place that sits behind my eyes and between my two ears.) Here are some things I've laughed about today:

When commenting on a friend's facebook status, I wanted to reference the egg that fell off the wall in the childhood nursery rhyme. Do you follow? It took a while for me to figure out what his name was. Then I had to google it. I was saying things like "humpity dumpty? humpidty dumpity? humpy dumpity?" to myself for what was probably close to a solid minute. Then when I finally figured it out and posted the comment, I laughed. Moments like that - the ones that are so silly and random and seemingly dumb - just make me who I am. I have them constantly - waaaay more than most people know.

Can I share that I make a lot of ear wax? Is that gross? I'm just trying to be real. Telling you that I have an issue with the buildup of soft ear wax and that my feet sweat (a lot) helps me to take myself a lot less seriously. It's amazing how light and fun and free I feel when I share things like that. You should try it.

Another funny thing that happened to me today that happens to me way more than people know: ... Well actually before I get into that I should say that only one person knows this happens to me and she only heard about it today. Good times. Okay, so I was intending to go to wordpress (where I have another blog - yes I have 3!!) and instead went to Wikipedia. I had started to type Wordpress when I thought of something else and watched myself type Wikipedia. The funny part? I wasn't thinking Wikipedia. My brain just kinda went its own direction on that one. And yes, similar things happen to me daily.

I bought a new journal (soft cover moleskine, my love) and with the exception of a couple days, I've been really great about writing a couple pages each night. When I'm journaling, I'll sometimes write words that I do not mean to write because I start thinking about something else. And the worst part is that the words I write not only are not the words I intended, they also have nothing to do with the thought that came blazing through my little brain. They are just random words that start with the same letter... if I'm lucky! Sometimes I don't even get that. (Hello, Ghostwriter!) And then, so I don't have to look stupid (in my own journal, the journal that only I see and is carried with me everywhere to ensure it), I work it into whatever I was saying. Because, well, you know, some day someone is probably going to read that journal. And I can't distract them from the brilliance of my life story by crossing through something. (Hahahaha!)

Well that felt good. I hope you enjoyed these fun stories from the Land of Laura. If you didn't, that totally sucks. You have now lost two minutes of your life to something you did not enjoy. If you did, stick around. There's lots more crazy where that came from!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Quick Note

I'm hoping to get back to my old writing soon. I know it's been a lot of "other stuff" around here for a while and I'm ready to change that! Can't wait to see all my old faces again!!

Lent: A Time of Fasting and Feasting

a repost from lent '06...

Yes, it's true. We can fast and feast this Lent. I have seen this on a few journals and I really like it. I liked it enough to pass it along in fact.

+Fast from judging others ... feast on the Christ indwelling in them.
It is easy to judge others and not ourselves. Let us purify ourselves of this today and share in the piece of Christ that is in each person we meet.

+Fast from emphasis on differences ... feast on the unity of life.
We are called to unite our sufferings especially during this Lenten season. Let us gather together and bear our crosses as one people in the name of Christ.

+Fast from apparent darkness ... feast on the reality of light.
It is easy to be burdened by troubles of this world but let us not forget the ever radiant light which is God's love for us.

+Fast from thoughts of illness ... feast on the healing power of God.
Let us shift our focus from our physical pains and realize more deeply the spiritual healing God makes available to us, especially in the sacrament of reconciliation.

+Fast from words that pollute ... feast on phrases that purify.
Especially during this season let us question ourselves on everything we think, do, or say: Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary?

+Fast from discontent ... feast on gratitude.
Praise God and give thanks for His abundant blessings. Let us rejoice in our dry periods and hold fast to the grace and mercy of God.

+Fast from anger ... feast on patience.
It is easy to be angry and more challenging to be patient. During this season, let us work more than ever on the virtue of patience (and charity).

+Fast from pessimism ... feast on optimism.
When things aren't going our way we hiss and pout. Let us instead find the lessons in each thing we do, whether they happen according to our preference or not.

+Fast from worry ... feast on divine order.
When things get us down it is difficult to remember the bright side of this. Let us pray for confidence in Him and ask for our hearts to be molded to His Divine Will.

+Fast from complaining ... feast on appreciation.
God has blessed each of us abundantly. Let us be appreciative of each hidden blessing and not allow our sour attitudes ruin a chance for grace and growth.

+Fast from negatives ... feast on affirmatives.
This Lent, instead of criticizing or fingering each wrong decision, let us provide those whom we love with affirmations of their purposeful strides to overcome sin and attain sainthood.

+Fast from unrelenting pressures ... feast on unceasing prayer.
If we live each moment as a prayer we should more appropriately and successfully accomplish those things which are in line with His Divine Will.

+Fast from hostility ... feast on resistance.
Let us this Lent resist the temptation to foster hostility. Let us shine forth at all times the light of Christ's love.

+Fast from bitterness ... feast on forgiveness.
Let go of trivial emotions which hinder forgiveness. God who is all loving and all good forgives each of those who seek reconciliation. Let us not deny our brothers and sisters in Christ.

+Fast from self-concern ... feast on compassion for others.
So many times we are self-centered and self-loving. Let us this Lent turn from our own needs and offer our attention to the needs of the lowliest of these.

+Fast from personal anxiety ... feast on eternal truth.
It is easy to be consumed in this world by the trials of daily life. Let us seek out His promises and hold fast to them always.

+Fast from discouragement ... feast on hope.
Do not dispair. God has a plan and in it there is much hope. Believe that He knows better than even ourselves what is best. Trust Him and He will see you through.

+Fast from facts that depress ... feast on truths that uplift.
Instead of dwelling on the negatives of our surroundings, we should seek out the truths that inspire and uplift us. Let us not seek our own depression but do everything in our power to remain hopeful.

+Fast from lethargy ... feast on enthusiasm.
Productiveness in faith is the most important in all of our lives. Let us enthusiastically learn about our faith and grow closer to our God.

+Fast from suspicion ... feast on truth.
Speculation and assumption should be left to the lawyers of the world. Instead of harboring ill thoughts due to suspicion, rejoice in what you know.

+Fast from thoughts that weaken ... feast on promises that inspire.
The devil will tempt us and lead us to feel and think we are alone and abandoned. Turn from the evil one and remember what God has promised us.

+Fast from shadows of sorrow ... feast on sunlight of renity.
Sorrowful distractions are from the evil one and prevent us from focusing on the healing power and the overwhelming mercy of our God. Let us turn from these and focus on Christ in the Eucharist. He who saves us will comfort us.

+Fast from idle gossip ... feast on purposeful silence.
Let us refrain from anything that is not kind, true, and necessary. Let us spend this time quietly in the everlasting presence of God.

If we can do these things I believe our Lenten season will be truly blessed. Think about it. Use it. ENJOY IT. [All of the italicized text are my own words. I despair at their inadequacy but recognize a chance to grow in humility. I pray my efforts are not in vain but rather prove to be a grace from God.]

St. Thomas Aquinas, the dumb ox, pray for us! St. Maria Goretti, pray for us! St. John of the Cross, pray for us! Sts. Francis and Clare, pray for us! All the angels and saints, pray for us!

(By the way, my Stations of the Cross recording will hopefully be up again sometime soon!! I hosted it in a temporary spot the last time I posted it.)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Parents' Worst Nightmare

Your baby is born premature because mom needs a new liver and the only way to save mom and baby is to deliver early and hope for a transplant. You deliver early, get your transplant within days, and you both go home (after ICU for weeks on end). It's a miracle. Life is good.

Then tragedy hits and instead of consoling you, you're charged with murder. It happened to a family in California. Read about it here and please, if you will, say a prayer.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Prayers, if you please

My mother (yes, "mommy") is the strongest (read: toughest/most stubborn) woman I know. For reals. (Yes, I said for reals.) She had to have surgery today and unfortunately came out sporting about three times as many incisions as are normal for the operation she underwent. She's in a lot of pain tonight. It was really hard for me not to cry in her room. I tried to be strong for her and the kids. It crushed my heart though. I hated listening to her moans of pain, watching her cry and say, "I can't do this."

Anyway, please pray for her comfort and peace. The morphine drip is helping to take the edge off (that should tell you something) but it's still really difficult. I pray she gets some sleep... and some REST!

Please keep her in your prayers. We hope to have her home again tomorrow.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Nutella: What's the big deal?

I feel I might be flogged (figuratively) by the blogging community - perhaps the community at large - for expressing my passiveness on the subject of Nutella.

When I first heard about the stuff, I had high hopes. Everyone I knew absolutely loved the stuff. In fact, for a while, it was all I heard about. Nutella, nutella, nutella.

Friends were posting pictures of Nutella-covered mouths, faces, and hands.

I heard of the wonders of Nutella on just about everything... and the sensory overload of Nutella by itself.

"That's it," I thought. "I must get some Nutella."

So after a long trip to the grocery store (I have a really hard time asking for help... and I had a hard time finding the stuff...), I returned home with my jar of Nutella. I quickly derobed and got into my best Nutella-eating outfit. I couldn't wait to have my first Nutella experience.

Removing the lid and peeling back the seal, I dove in. "Oh my goodness," I thought to myself. "I am SO excited. This is going to be great! Oh, Nutella, my love! We meet at last!"

And then the first taste. And disappointment. And semi-disgust.

What the hell were people thinking? It wasn't even that GOOD. It was alright. But it wasn't great. Who the heck started this craze?

And that's how I've felt about Nutella ever since. I tried it once and put the jar in the pantry. For all I know, it may still be in the pantry. I will likely never buy Nutella again and I will certainly never subject my kids to it.

By the way, I think it's absolutely criminal that the makers of Nutella suggest slabbing the stuff onto a croissant. A croissant, people!! Croissants are a delicacy that should not be tinkered with. Especially if we're talking about Nutella. Good grief.