My Spring Reading List!

After the heavier reading of Lent, I thought I'd like to continue some inspirational spiritual reading through the Easter season as well. 

Here's my book list!

Private and Pithy lessons from Scripture - Mother Angelica
Little Book of Life Lessons - Mother Angelica
Three to Get Married - Fulton Sheen
The Little Oratory
Diary Sister Faustina
Getting Past Perfect - Kate Wicker
The Words We Pray - Amy Welborn
Perfectly Yourself - Matthew Kelly 
Crossing the Threshold of Hope - Pope John Paul II

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7-Quick Takes - Top posts of 2016

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As I look back at my stats over the past year, it's interesting to see the types of things you readers clicked on and read the most. Aside from some 7-Quick Take, or Simple Woman posts, these were the posts with the most views this year. Here they are listed in no particular order, with excerpts from each post. 

1.  On Losing an Older Sister

The first time I met Irene I was standing in my then-boyfriend's family kitchen and she and one of her other sisters blew right by me to pick up something at the house before heading off for some kind of errand or adventure. She had undoubtedly seen a stream of young friends, girls and boys, come into that kitchen thousands of times as she watched her eight siblings grow up.

When Irene suffered complications from a surgery this fall, we made a special effort to see her and encourage her to get well.  And now I'm so thankful that we did.  Mr. Pete got to spend some quiet time just visiting with his sister, and I had a chance to show my appreciation as well.

There's a big gap in the family now. I know we'll go on, we always do, but it won't be the same ever, and  the entire family will grieve for a long time.

August 2016 136

2.  Glen Frey RIP
Melodies, rich harmonies, moving lyrics coming from guys who looked like the guys you went to school with - only older and a little edgier. Beautiful. Magical. Soulful. Heartbreaking.
I guess what I'm also grieving is not only the passing of the stars from my youth, but the era they represent - and the reminder that the era I'm remembering was a long time ago, and that another more personal era will also end someday.

Jane drumsara

  via Flickr  licensed cc 

Glen Frey and Ulcerative Colitis

Which brings us back to Mr. Frey.  He suffered from rheumatoid arthritis as well as UC. Rheumatoid arthritis is another auto-immune disease. I can't help but wonder if he had had a chance to work with a natural nutritionist who was aware of the havoc grain proteins works on the body, would he have been able to avoid surgery and the complications (including death) that come from such a big surgery.

The scariest part is that because Mr. Frey probably had the best in health care,he probably never had the opportunity to explore anything other than the standard Western medical options. And now he's gone too soon at 67.

3.  That Girl with These Girls


Interestingly, as we started to get deeper into the episodes, my daughters and I developed a different feeling towards Ann Marie and started to become more interested in her T.V. boyfriend, Don Hollinger, portrayed by the late Ted Bessell. While Ann Marie was supposed to be the 60s version of Lucy Ricardo, Don was anything but another version of Ricky. In fact, Don was the closest thing we could remember of a character portraying all of the standards of love found in 1 Corinthians.

Donald was patient- to a fault. Even when Ann's schemes and situations started to annoy us while we were watching them, Donald remained the calm voice of reason, patiently trying to solve the dilemma.

He was always kind even if Ann wasn't particularly kind to him.

He did not boast - although he took his profession seriously and was very proficient at it.

He was not proud and in fact was willing to do a lot of self-deprecating things for Ann's sake.

He looked out for Ann's honor, even though her father was always sure that Donald was somehow debasing his daughter.

He was never easily angered even though we three would be screaming at the t.v. that he should just dump her and find another girlfriend!

And he protected her, many times, including two times in the first season when he put his life at risk to protect her.

By the end of season one, my daughters were smitten with Ann's boyfriend. I started thinking that if I ever wanted to find an example for my girls of what to look for in a potential husband using a cultural example (even if that example is over 50 years old) I couldn't do much better than Don Hollinger.

4.  Pope Francis Throwing the Faithful Under the BUs, One Airplane Interview at a Time!

So after a long trip, on a crowded airplane, the tired  79-year-old Pontiff gives another off-the-cuff remark that pretty much undermines the well formulated teachings of Pope Pius XI, Pope Paul VI, John Paul II, and Pope Benedict the XVI - and the media gloms onto it with headlines about Pope Francis making contraception OK for Catholics!

Here are some examples:
Teen Vogue
Huffington Post
Youth Health Mag
New York Times. 

This is not the first time that Pope Francis has said  things like this.

So no wonder the young Catholic in our pre-cana session was confused!  And I'll bet they are not alone. IF your main source of news and info on the church comes from the media, or the spin of liberal news sources, it might seem as if indeed Catholic teaching on things like contraception has changed!

5.  Moving Back Alley Abortions in to Clinics

Sure, having an 8-foot wide corridor might seem like overkill - until you have a real emergency with someone bleeding out and it's difficult to get a gurney and paramedics with medical equipment down the hall to the patient!  Regulations are there for the "what ifs!" even if those are very rare.

First of all, they are not singling out abortion clinics.  In Texas, birthing centers  have to face similar regulations and licensure. Secondly, abortion is big business. Planned Parenthood brings in around $300, million a year.  So maybe it might cut into the profits, but most businesses that serve the public have to face certain rules and regulations when it comes to their facility - such is life in the 21st century.

Women aren't stupid. I knew when I saw that dental lamp go up in flames that I was receiving substandard treatment because of my inability to pay for better dentistry. Likewise, I felt safe and as if I was receiving genuinely good care after my colonoscopy because of the professional staff and the medical-feel of the facility.

Surprisingly, the very women's groups that have been yelling for years that abortion needs to stay out of the back alley, are adamant about substandard regulations for abortion clinics!  Instead of advocating for the best in "women's health care" they are  demanding a woman's right for second rate and subpar standards when it comes to terminating their pregnancies.

It will be fascinating to see how the SCOTUS falls on that one.

The second medical examination

The SCOTUS this week ruled that when it comes to abortion, availability is more important than safety. What their ruling truly says is that women have a constitutional right to have an abortion, but that abortion doesn't have to be

  • safe
  • clean
  • professional

and in fact, any laws that attempt to make abortion submit to safety regulations (level of safety has yet to be determined ) can be deemed unconstitutional if the abortion provider wants to take legal action. SCOTUS essentially made the back alley abortion constitutional and this time, with the cheers and support of the pro-abortion, pro-"choice" crowd.

So what is so bad about these books anyway?  In the few samples provided in the article gave examples of sexual intercourse, incest, oral sex, and something that sounded a lot like rape.
I'm a big advocate of classical literature  in high school. It prepares students for more difficult reads in college, it uses rich vocabulary, and it tackles difficult topics in more sophisticated ways.  And despite what the new educators try to tell us, it's also more challenging:


7.  The Non Apologist for Trump

Last night, Donald Trump came out and did what he had to do. I think he put this "scandal" into perspective and put it behind him. Then finally, the Donald Trump that steam rolled the Republican primary field and garnered a legion of Trump loyalists showed up for the debate - and it was impressive.  Cringey at times - but still impressive.

Donald Trump
Gage Skidmore via Flickr, licensed cc

Never let evil talk pass your lips; say only the good things men need to hear, things that will really help them. Do nothing that will sadden the Holy Spirit with whom you were sealed against the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, all passion and anger, harsh words, slander, and malice of every kind. In place of these, be kind to one another, compassionate, and mutually forgiving, just as God has forgiven you in Christ.

So in the spirit of something that I hope will help and not hurt, I offer this post.
On Wednesday night, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton were both asked for their views on abortion and on future Supreme Court nominees.

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