Human Dignity, Joy

Daring to Try


I am amazed at the things I will do for my kids.

And I’m not talking about the maternal-instinct so-they-will-survive stuff (like sleep deprivation and all those things I blocked out of selective memory).

I’m talking about Daring to Try.

For my son’s 5th birthday, we had a dance party for 17 kids ages 3-8.  Two months prior to Max’s birthday, we attended a cousin’s wedding, which is where we introduced my kids to the dance floor.

Dancing at a Wedding

This would probably be a good time to mention that I really can’t dance.  I try.  I have fun.  But to be honest, I’m not very good at it.  I’m a big ball of uncoordinated, awkward self-consciousness.

But what I’ve come to understand about my kids is:  They. Don’t. Care.  They just want me.  Having fun.  With them.

I see the way my kids look at me with awe and love.  It’s like they take my own awe and love of them, multiply it and thrust it back upon me.

My kids see me with God’s eyes.  With God’s love.  And with all my humanness, imperfections, and limitations, they still see awesomeness.

I have two choices here:

  1. I can correct them: tell them why I’m not-quite-good-enough and effectively model self-doubt
  2. Or I can make an effort.  I can try.  I can model humility and try, and try, and try again…

It’s not all that easy to try…  In her book, Daring Greatly, Brené Brown explains how putting yourself out there requires quite a bit of vulnerability and courage.  It doesn’t come naturally.  It’s a choice.  A choice I want my kids to make.  So I force myself to model it.

Don't Let Perfect Be the Enemy of the Good

So for Max’s 5th birthday, I gathered 2 hours of kid-friendly dance music, including lots of line dancing stuff apropos for weddings, and burned the playlist to a 2-cd set as the party favor.  Then we cleared the furniture out of the living room, set up some dance lights, and effectively turned the living room into a dance floor.

Max's 5th Birthday Dance Party.

That was the easy stuff.   At a certain point, it became necessary to actually lead the line dances.  In case I wasn’t clear on this, let me lay it out: I would rather have crawled under a rock and died than get up in front of people and lead the Electric Slide.

Except that’s not true.  Not when I look into the eyes of my kids and see their joyful desire.

So I threw caution to the wind and I Dared to Try. And the kids Loved. It.  Everyone had a blast.  Including me.

There’s a post I found through Pinterest called “Waking Up Full of Awesome.”  The author, Melissa, posts an appropriately absolutely awesome picture of her 5 year old and reflects on the phenomenon of how we once – when we were 5 – “woke up  full of awesome.”  And at some point most of us lose that.

I don’t want that for my boys.  And I don’t want that for me.  And neither does God.

I want them to see their awesomeness as clearly as I do.  And I want to see my own awesomeness as clearly as they do.

Because that–with all that awesomeness–is how God sees me.  So that’s where I’d like to be.  For now, my next step is focusing on Daring to Try.

Dance! by Scott Robinson licensed under CC BY 2.0

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Conference Presentations

Vatican II: Understanding the Call and Living the Vision


While most of my posts center around reflections on life and faith, when I present at conferences, I like to offer participants the opportunity to access the information from the session online.

The following PowerPoint was part of the presentation offered on August 25, 2012 at the Southern Catechist Conference at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church in Nassau Bay, TX.

50th Anniversary of Vatican II: Understanding the Call and Living the Vision [pptx]

In the session, I referenced and recommended the following resources:

Conciliria invites readers to relive the moving and hope-filled days of the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Council, we offer day-to-day coverage, utilizing archival reporting from that time, contemporary documents and special guest correspondents who will step into a time machine to report on the dramatic events as though they were there 50 years ago.  Conciliria provides a great background article “What the Council Did.”

America Magazine will undoubtedly provide engaging articles on the 50th Anniversary.  In this article on The Beatification of Pope Pius IX, America offers a brief, readable piece with insight  into the historical, cultural context of the papacy of Pius IX.  This, of course, helps us better understand the historical context of Vatican II.

Vatican II—Voice of the Church is a website dedicated to promoting and explaining the teaching of the Second Vatican Council (1962-65).   Multiple scholars and theologians – many of whom were at the council – contribute to the articles on this site.

“Vatican Basilica ©”

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Action, Love

Many Parts


My sister and I often catch-up while I’m cleaning the kitchen and she’s driving somewhere. Most of the time, it’s your simple sisterly exchange-of-love-and-information phone call.

Laurie has been volunteering with SafePlace, a shelter for battered and abused women (and their children) in Austin. One of her stories struck me more deeply than others. Probably for the sheer banality of it all.

Laurie worked in the food pantry on Friday, helping the residents “shop” for the week. She surmised that cereal the pantry had to offer must have been donated by HEB as near-expiration-overstock that no one wanted – one of those full of fiber (and it tastes like it) cereals. There was a little boy who accompanied his mother in line. When they asked for cereal, and he saw the one and only option, he started to cry to his mother, “I don’t want that kind. I want our regular kind. Why do we have to be here? I just want to go back with Dad.”

The emotional devastation of every woman in the room could be felt.

The littlest things that we take for granted can bring such simple joy for those who are so broken and vulnerable. Once she returned home, Laurie posted a simple request to her local friends on Facebook. In addition to cereal and pancake mix for kids, the Moms wanted popcorn and chips for movie night, and as an extra special treat, some Betty Crocker boxed cake or cookie mixes.

As my sister has made a commitment to volunteer with various organizations in the Austin area throughout the past few years, she has continually posted simple requests like these on her Facebook wall. She even tells her friends that she’ll go  to them to pick up the donated items.

Laurie’s simple, specific posts certainly help direct the “givers” generosity to meet the “recipients” basic needs/wants. But she also does a tremendous service to raising awareness of social issues and offering both a model and vehicle of charity to her 300+ Facebook friends, some of whom might never consider the multitude of difficulties a victim of domestic violence faces.

I don’t want that kind. I want our regular kind. Why do we have to be here? I just want to go back with Dad.

When Laurie told Mom this story, not surprisingly, Mom offered to finance a “treats” run to stock the pantry. But in reflection, Laurie asked an important question:
It’s great that Mom is buying them groceries this month, but what about next month?

And that’s the point in the phone call where I went all theologian on her.
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses. For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. (1 Corinthians 12:4-12)

Everything that Laurie is doing right now for SafePlace is important – from personally volunteering to telling stories to posting donation requests on Facebook. But she’s not in the financial position to stock the pantry.

That’s ok.  

There are many parts. We are all one body.

Without the time to shop or undergo training for volunteering, Mom donated money. That’s all she was in the position to do at the moment.

That’s ok.

There are many parts. We are all one body.

Laurie and I share the frugal, money-saving, coupon clipping gene. So I suggested she consider clipping those coupons for items she doesn’t personally use, follow the sales posted on our favorite savings blog Hip2Save, and snag deals on these items. I can help with this, I say. I can’t volunteer or donate money, but I’ll keep an eye out for deals and sales.

That’s ok.

There are many parts. We are all one body.

So we wrap up the phone call (as she arrived at her destination and my kids needed something like food or attention), and we each go about our day.

Six hours later, I walk in to Kroger and see that they are having a 3-day sale on limited varieties of GM cereals – cereals with a sugar content that I do not want to give my kids and would normally never buy. In the before-you-walk-in-the-store, where you grab your cart, there’s a display offering these cereals 2 for $3. And I have coupons. Of course. So each of the boys got to pick out a cereal for “families who are going through a difficult time.”  Four boxes of cereal cost me $3.75 out of pocket.  That I can do.
Of course I called Laurie to tell her how yes, indeed, the Spirit is at work.  And in her usual joy, Laurie remarked: “This is amazing!”

Sometimes faith leads us to service.

For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me. (Matthew 25:35-36).

And sometimes it is the experience of service that leads us to a deeper faith and spirituality.  It is that experience of service in which we are completely filled with love and joy.  It is that experience of service where we are overwhelmed by this “good feeling” and the only words we can muster is a humble recognition that we have received so much more than we gave.  THIS is the experience of divine agapic love (see here and here for further explanation on this).

This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. (John 15:12)

When we accept the invitation of Christ to love others as he loved us, we are filled with the divine presence.

Thing that we need to remember when it comes to service — when it comes to a faith that does justice — is that (a) don’t think it all depends on you to do everything.  That’s what we call a Messiah complex.  And honestly, we already have one of those.  And (b) don’t think there’s only one way to help.  Do what you can.  Where you can.  When you can.

There are many parts. We are all one body.

cereal aisle by Ben McLeod licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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The national flags all over the world

Fun Creations: A Flag Party


I have a thing for functional art.  When I am able to create something useful, it brings me joy.

I also have a thing about waste, in as much as I don’t like things that are wasteful of time, efforts, energy, or resources.

When it comes to planning birthday parties for my kids, I try to take these two “things” (aka obsessions) of mine and make them work for me.  I prefer to decorate in a way that is reusable, and I aim to create party-favor / goodie-bags that contain useful/usable things (i.e., no cluttering tchockies).

I became a Mom on the Fourth of July, 2006, meaning my oldest turned 6 on 7/4/12.  With a backyard pool and a summer birthday, we have a pool party every year.  Still, Alex gets to choose the theme for his cake and decorations.

This year: Flags.

In his kindergarten year at the Montessori school he attends, he created a “Flag Book,” in which he drew pictures of some flags.

Add in the international scenes of the Disney Pixar movie Cars 2, and flags quickly became his favorite thing.

Unique party theme, for sure.  But also very little to go on.  When I asked Alex what he had in mind, the most he could offer was a vague idea of hunting for flags.

I knew he loved certain flags from certain countries for no apparent reason: Libya, Bangladesh, Japan, Maldives, Palau… Why?  “Because I like them.”  For goodness sake, I had no idea where to even find some of these countries  on the map!

So I requested pictorial books from the library and did some research.  There is a story behind every flag, some with far-fetched legends, others packed with symbolism.  THIS, I could work with!  During a long car trip, I grabbed some post-it notes and marked the pages which pictured his favorite flags.

The one idea I found on Pinterest offered food platters that replicated the colors and patterns of some flags.  The flags Alex liked the most had his favorite colors along with basic patterns he could replicate.  I used one idea straight from Pinterest: the Mexican flag represented by guacamole, sour cream, and salsa (using olives, cheese, and garnish for the emblem).

Flag of Mexico

For the rest, I brainstormed food ideas that could match the basic colors and patterns.  I tried to also keep the platters as healthy as possible, especially since my family and many of our friends eat (mostly) gluten and dairy free. (Hover over the picture for the ingredients.)

Flag of United States of America

Flag of Israel

Flag of Maldives

Libya Flag 1977-2011 (Qadhafi Regime)

Flag of Ireland

Flag of China

Flag of Japan

Flag of Bangladesh

Flag of Italy

I asked my friends and family if I could borrow any rectangular platters they had to use for the party–especially any with lids.  So I had plenty to work with and created FOOD ART! (Note: for the homemade blue cheese dressing in the Ireland flag, go here.  For the deviled eggs recipe in the China flag, go here.)

Display of Food Art

I was intrigued by Alex’s idea for a “Flag Hunt,” but I needed supplies to offer the parameters for the hunt.  My first thought was to try to make the flags myself… but the realities of the space-time continuum made that plan unrealistic.  I would have needed to start creating flags months ago.  Instead, I checked out Oriental Trading and found a package of 15 different 6″ x 4″ flags (72 total flags in a pack… meaning 4-5 of each flag).  I purchased 3 packages, so each party guest could have one of each flag.  While they weren’t the best quality (plastic flags on a plastic stick), they were affordable and could serve as both the scavenger hunt bounty and the party favors.

So I took another pictorial flag book from the library, a different color stack of post-it notes, and gathered just enough info to offer some of each flag’s story as part of the scavenger hunt.  While it was helpful to preview the library books (and “flag” them with post-its for easy reference), in the end I found that it was easier to copy and paste info from Wikipedia into a document (Flags Stories) rather than re-write each story.

Then, my husband and I brainstormed 15 different locations on our property (for 4, 5, 6, and 7 year olds to safely do a scavenger hunt).  I put on my cheesiest poetry thinking hat and came up with a song or rhyme for each clue.  (Again, I did this during a long car ride).

  1. Come over to play / on any old day / winter, spring, summer or fall. / In this box you’ll find / trucks, chalk, and balls.  [Outside Toys Box]
  2. For us to move to Nassau Bay, we have to sell our house one day.  This sign tells others who to call, and that there’s a pool for all y’all.  [For Sale Sign]
  3. STOP in the name of love, before you break my heart!  STOP in the car on the street if you’re driving!  [STOP Sign]
  4. Roses are red, violets are blue, Alex is turning 6, and so are many of you.  These flowers aren’t roses.  These flowers aren’t violets.  These flowers are petunias.  And they’re in a colorful box. [Flower Box]
  5. On a hot, hot, hot day / You come over to play / And to try to stay cool / You jump in the pool / And if you want a toy / Whether you’re a girl or a boy / You’ll find lots of tricks / Like dive rings and sticks [Pool toy box]
  6. Sand in your fingers, sand in your toes.  Sand in THIS yard.  You know where it goes [Sandbox]
  7. Waterslide, waterslide everywhere.  From where does the water come?  Follow the hose back to the SPOUT.  From THERE does the water come. [Faucet]
  8. The pool equipment goes whrrr, whrrr, whrrr.  Whrrr, whrrr, whrrr… [Pool Pump]
  9. Riding along in my automobile… Who knows what my car looks like?  [By the front tire of my car]
  10. Mary, Mary quite contrary.  How does your GARDEN grow?  With silver bells and cockle shells and pretty maids all in a row.  Alex, Alex with your cowlicks, where does your Daddy grow: tomatoes and Brussels  sprouts and veggies all in a row.  [Garden]
  11. Flower power in a chair, flower power over there.  Flower power in the sun.  Flower power; just pick one. [Behind one of the painted flower chairs]
  12. Repeat after me: There was a tree (There was a tree).  In the middle of a pot (In the middle of a pot).  And in this tree (And in this tree).  There was a lemon (There was a lemon).  A lemon on the tree, and the tree in the pot, and the pot on the rocks… [Potted Lemon Tree]
  13. Ding-Dong the witch is dead!  Witch old witch; the wicked witch!  Ding-Dong the Wicked Witch is Dead!  DING-DONG!  Bell out of order; please knock!  [Doorbell]
  14. Winnie the Pooh, Winnie the Pooh.  Tubby little tummy all stuffed with fluff, he’s Winnie the Pooh, Winnie the Pooh, willie, silly, nillie old bear.  Winnie the Pooh went to the six tall pines, but in our yard we only have one tall pine.  The next clue can be found there.  [Pine tree]
  15. Oh, say can you see at the dawn’s early light… I pledge allegiance to the flag…  Which flag are these referencing??? The final bag can be found near an American flag.   [USA Flag Decoration in Back Yard]

The clues really had nothing to do with flags themselves… they just brought the kids from place to place.  At the start of the scavenger hunt, I passed around “Flag Bags.”

Flag Bags used for Party Favors

I got 2 yards of the only “flag” fabric I could find at JoAnn’s, and sewed very basic bags.  I’m not really one for measurements or pinning in my primitive sewing skills… I basically folded the fabric to make sure I’d have enough bags for everyone.  Then I cut, sewed a seam at the top, and stitched down each side.  I would’ve used ribbons for the handles, but years ago my Mother-in-Law had sewn “ties” for a project my husband was working on, and I had a bunch leftover… I thought they made perfect handles for each bag.  Then, in the kids’ summer camp art supply section, I found very inexpensive fabric puff paints, with which I painted each guest’s name.  The Flag Bags were ultimately the kids party favor bags (reusable), included a couple of pencils from Oriental Trading.

At each location, they’d find a ziplock bag with a different country’s flag.  While the flags were passed around to each guest, I read a short blurb about each flag’s story.  To make it easier on myself, I had cut the Flags Stories document up into blurbs and stuck each into the corresponding ziplock bag of flags.

At the end of the scavenger hunt, the kids went back to swimming.  (If we didn’t have the pool, I probably would have done a few more activities, like having the kids make their own flag… but I find kids are content to swim and play!)  I encouraged the parents at the party to remind the kids about their flags when they watch the Summer Olympics, starting July 27.

In addition to the flag platters, for decorations, I purchased a couple of international flag banners (which are no longer available) from Oriental Trading.

I also decided to finally follow through on a gift idea for Alex.  At Christmas, my parents bought him an assortment of 100 4″x6″ international flags from Miniature Flag Shop.  He wanted to be able to put the flags “on the map where they go.”  So 7 months later I used the birthday-gift/party-decoration as motivation.  I found a 2’x3′ world map poster from  Michael’s for $12.99 (and used a 40% off coupon, of course).

Then at Lowe’s, I found a piece of 3/4 inch thick pine board that was the exact size I needed (2’x3′) for about $16.  I could’ve gotten plywood and cut/sanded myself for less money, but I was happy to save time, effort, and energy there.  Rather than using the real Mod Podge, I mixed up a homemade version with 50-50 glue and water and decopodged the poster to the board.  After it dried, I used the thickest nail I could find in our garage and “started” the flag holes on the countries.  Then, I gently drilled 1/4″ holes around the map.  I didn’t quite get all the countries, but I did focus on Alex’s favorites.

For the cake, I baked two 8″ rounds and decorated them as the two sides of a globe map.  When it came to the miniature international toothpick flags, I let Alex insert the bulk of them.

Globe Cake with Toothpick Flags

I made one yellow cake (on the left with Europe, Asia, Africa etc) and one gluten free, dairy free chocolate cake (on the right with North and South America).  I used America’s Test Kitchen yellow cake and buttercream icing recipes because they are phenomenal – tasty and (relatively) easy to follow directions.  The gf/df cake recipe comes from Hip2Save.  My kids and I LOVE this recipe because it tastes FANTASTIC!  It doesn’t use any “fake” flours or flour substitutes.  Since none of us have an issue with butter, I used the buttercream icing on everything.

I was pretty pleased with how it all turned out!  It was fun, functional, tasty, and healthy.

“The national flags all over the world ©”

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Joy, Projects, Sabbath

Project Pamper Me


You know how sometimes you know something, but still: you manage to forget its meaning and import in your life?

I occasionally lead a retreat – a retreat that I created – called “Sabbath and the Busy Person.” Its focus is on breaking open the meaning of the 3rd Commandment to Keep Holy the Sabbath, and understand that it’s calling us to more than just worship.

Sabbath is about stopping. Not doing. Just being. Refreshing the soul. Re-creating our passion and joy through recreation. Reconnecting with our best selves and the God who created us.

After juxtaposing the theological concept of Sabbath with the reality of our lives, I offer the practical wisdom of Stephen Covey’s 3rd Habit: Put First Things First. In addition to Covey’s time management insights, I also use spiritual insights from Robert Wicks’ Availability. When you’re “too available,” giving to everyone but yourself, you’re sabotaging your own efforts. When you’re tapped – completely wiped out – you’re no good to anyone.

You need to take care of yourself, if for no other reason than to be a better you.

I know this. I teach it. I lead reflections and retreats on it. And yet I manage to forget it.

All. The. Time.

One of my favorite recent insights is how wonderful it’s been to have discovered the joy of having a hobby. I have posted about my new found hobby of Functional Art (see previous posts here and here), particularly with the addicting explosion of Pinterest. Not only do I enjoy actually doing these projects, but I find that when I do so, I’m able to turn my theologian-writer-teacher-mother brain off and focus only on creating something new. That in and of itself is a Godsend. Because when I do return to my busy-yet-wonderful-yet-stressful life, my brain is refreshed and energized.

I’m like: “Ooooh – so this is what people mean by ‘Get a hobby!'”

Shortly after the New Year, my Mom and I were having a conversation about trying to shift out of a negative mood. Mom was struggling with a multitude of things and wanted nothing more than to clear her mind of the anger, frustration, and hurt over a situation that was beyond her control. She had spent the morning trying to distract herself from it all by house cleaning, checking email, Facebooking, and whatnot. (Mom hasn’t yet discovered Pinterest, which may explain why she was not able to fully distract herself.)

Mom had the right idea, but the problem with her modes-of-distraction were that they were just time-filling tasks. She didn’t really enjoy any of them. In fact, they tended to drain her energy more than fill her up.

When you need to change your energy, when you need to refresh and re-energize, you need to do something you love. Just. For. Fun.

About a week after my conversation with my Mom, my friend Stacey emailed a few in the girlfriend group whom she recalled having some success with what she called “Project Pamper Me.”

I am feeling…stretched thin…doing everything for everyone all the time, and I am feeling like I just want someone to take care of me!

And…I realized I should pamper and spoil myself like I do for others. I had this realization this morning while simultaneously making the family’s lunches, breakfasts, snacks for the day, fixing their hair, filling out school paperwork all while they ate and I bustled around. And I thought: Man, I would like to sit down.

So…I’ve decided I want to start pampering myself daily…but that’s where I get stuck. What to do? How? So far I have been just sitting in front of the TV…I haven’t even brushed my teeth because I am so drained from giving everything to others and not myself. And I don’t really feel like Teen Mom 2 is the kind of pampering I need…

How do I make myself get up and do something good for myself when I just want to wallow?

What are some long terms ways I can pamper myself – and keep in mind: I don’t want one more “to do” that I need to do to stay healthy. Help!?!

Stacey’s complaint, assessment, and hope-yet-concern resonated deeply. One of the reasons I have been so WOW-ed by my new-found “hobby” of crafting is that it really is something I enjoy for me. And doing it recharges me.

Our group of girlfriends used to do yoga as our “Project Pamper Me” – sometimes as a group, other times individually. And we loved it. And it’s been a while since any of us have done it. In some way, I’ve heard each of us express the desire to return, but we each have a stressed out “how can I fit this in?” attitude about yoga. So far it has been too much. And “too much” doesn’t bring anyone joy.

So Teacher-Julie came up with a 3-Part Plan, and Kari and Amalour added insights to flesh it out.

Project Pamper Me’s 3-Part Plan:

Step 1: Identify the things you like to do that are just for you and bring you joy.

Make a mental list. Or a real paper one. Get your mind around what it is, what way it needs to function to be for-you, by-you. And maintain that approach. I can’t just do crafts “for” other people (on demand), because then it becomes a thing. Even if I ultimately give something to other people, if my hobby is to be rejuvenating and re-joy-infusing, they need to flow from me. Not from others.

Kari suggests:

  • Make a list of the things you enjoy that are just for you (include big and small things, i.e. pedicure, massage, movie, crafts, reading, going for a walk, sitting in the sun, taking a bubble bath, etc)
  • Make it for you, to relax you and bring you joy! (Not another task to be done!)

Amalour is someone who knows how vital relaxation can be to physical health. She’s in the process of beating an aggressive form of breast cancer. For the second time. After a full mastectomy. With a husband and three children under the age of seven. She offered some of her own personal approaches to Project Pamper Me:

  • Fit in at least two soaking baths a week, during the day when all the kids are away. I really take my time and totally relax.
  • Sit out in the sun for a while and get those good melatonin juices flowing.
  • Once in a while, get a sitter to feed and put the kids to bed. Then go to a cafe or Starbuck’s and read. Just get a break from the most frustrating part of the evening.
  • Grab a healthy lunch somewhere alone… somewhere I can get served.
  • When I haven’t gotten the me-time before the kids are home (and find I really need it), Tell them: “I need a little break, absolutely do not disturb me.” Make sure they have a snack, and go take a power nap or ready/study.

Step 2: Do that thing.

Make sure you’re staying true to the unblemished form of the hobby that brings you joy.

Step 3: Make a commitment to yourself to integrate it in to your life.

Sometimes integrating it in to my day is too difficult. But I can do a weekly commitment to care for myself.

Kari suggests integrating into daily life:

  • To implement it daily make sure you have a bunch of small things on the list – not just big things. That way, when you don’t have a lot of time you can still take 10-20 min for you!
  • I get in the TV trap too when I’m feeling worn out. Sometimes I choose to go with it and don’t feel guilty. Other times, I take a bubble bath and read a book. Definitely find some way, big or small, to pamper yourself daily.
  • If it makes it easier, pick the same time everyday.
  • If it doesn’t happen one day don’t beat yourself up, just start again the next day!

Amalour has the planning part down:

  • Look at the coming week’s schedule and block out the me-time. Because for me, it’s not always the same time of the day every day.
  • Make sure to leave ample time; don’t feel rushed.
  • In general, try not to schedule so much errand-running around.

Whatever we choose to do for me-time, be it a hobby or an indulgence, taking care of ourselves has to be a priority. Think of it as a Sabbath Moment; the time in which you get a chance to rest, reflect, and re-energize. It is in these moments which we remember to rejoice in the beauty of Creation. And it is through these moments which we become our best selves.

If you’re still not convinced, I leave you with the words of Robert Wicks:

If you won’t do it for yourself, do it for those you love. by guttersnipe.76]( licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

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