Wednesday, July 26, 2017

St. Anne

I love the beautiful examples of faith we are given via the Communion of Saints. These holy men and women help me to remember that I am loved beyond measure by a Creator who isn't interested in perfection so much as genuine effort. A God who can create saints out of some of the more unlikely cases (I'm looking at you Ignatius.)

Saint Anne, whose feast day is today, is a saint near and dear to my heart. Maybe it's because of a close relationship with my own grandmother, but Jesus' grandma has always been a source of inspiration and consolation in my life. She helped young Mary grow to be a strong, holy woman who proclaimed "Yes!" to God trusting unconditionally.

While most Catholic girls I knew growing up were striving to be like Mary, I often felt her perfection to be distancing - to be honest, sometimes I still do. I mean, the woman was immaculately conceved and chosen by God to bring us the Prince of Peace - that's crazing intimidating. And while I have since begun developing a closer relationship with Mama Mary, I still feel drawn to her mom, Anne.

In those moments where I find Mary to be out of reach, I pray for the grace to be like Anne - a gracious mother that leads her child in holiness by a beautiful example of love and sacrifice.

So, today I am thankful for the gift of St. Anne, for the gift of grandparents, and for the gift of holy women that teach me how to fall more deeply in love with Christ and lead me closer to God.

St. Anne, pray for us.

Who is your favorite saint?


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Let's Catch Up

And just like that, my first year of work at a high school is over. This year has been challenging and beautiful and hard and rewarding and so many other adjectives that don't seem to fit together but, by the grace of God, do.

And now, summer. A chance to be still. To unwind. To continue settling into life on the East Coast. Technically I'm a 12 month position, but because of all of the travel I did this year to learn about our service program, I have been firmly told to take a break and if I do have to get something done, do it from home.

Twist my arm.

Honestly, it is a bit more challenging than you would think. I love my school and I love my job, so not going into the office is hard. It's 10 minutes away, it gets me out of my apartment, and I would see coworkers... I'm working on it. Definitely a growing edge, friends.

I did manage to unplug from work this past week on a vacation to Exuma. More about that later, but for now a photo of M and me because he is currently driving home to Ohio where I will be in a week or so. We had a blast, if you can't tell from our ear-to-ear smiles. He got pretty sunburnt right from the get-go (hens the t-shirt), so a friendly PSA to practice good skin care this summer, friends.

(On a note of personal growth for the year, never did I think I would publicly post a photo of me, full body, in a swimsuit. And yet, there it is, and on Instagram too. And I actually really like the photo. If this was a year ago, I am certain I would be tearing myself apart about x, y or z in the picture. And to be honest, I do still notice some flaws, but they do not own me any more and I feel so freed by that - May not seem like a big deal, but believe me, it is.)

Other things we may need to catch up on since my last post...

I've been trying to jump back on the reading train and these books are definitely worth checking out:

  1. A Man Called Ove - I cried.
  2. Mercy in the City: How to Feed the Hungry, Give Drink to the Thirsty, Visit the Imprisoned, and Keep Your Day Job - Easy read that I hope to use with my high schoolers.
  3. Accidental Saints: Finding God in All the Wrong People - Some strong language, but overall great read and a great reminder to find God in everyone. 
I tend to be posting more on Instagram lately than anywhere else, so if you would like more timely updates/convo along with potentially entertaining stories, you can find me HERE.

Oh, and I adopted a cat. I don't think I've introduced you Zelie yet. She will probably also get her own post soon. (Maybe.)

And I guess that's life in a nutshell lately. How are you, friend?