7 Quick Takes: Short Entry This Week

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Orphans. Do you see these darling children?

L-R: Brett and Iris

Brett still needs a mama. Iris finally has a family committed to her and they were supposed to have met her on the 29th.

— 2 —

Stopping here this week. We got some really tough news today (don’t worry — Daniel is fine) and I’m really not feeling like writing right now. Do me a favor and pray for our special intention (related to the one from yesterday). Please and thank you.

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at ConversionDiary.Com.

Two Things

1.) MY LAPTOP IS HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I got everything set up yesterday.

2.) I’m really standing in the need of prayer here for a special intention. I can’t give details but I just ask that you’d keep Jon/Daniel/me in prayer. (No, Daniel is not sick.) Please and thank you.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: January 28, 2014

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY January 28, 2014

Outside my window… dark. Then again, it *is* 1 a.m. so this isn’t surprising. It was in the 60’s today. We are *hopefully* going to get rain on Thursday — something that we pretty desperately need here in California.

I am thinking… about tomorrow (today?) and what needs to get done.

I am thankful… that Daniel is finally asleep so that I can blog, do my examen, and go to sleep!

In the kitchen… dishes to be done. Yippee.

I am wearing… charcoal shirt and black yoga pants.

I am creating… this entry. 🙂

I am listening to… a Matt Maher playlist on Youtube.

I am wondering… if we’re ever going to catch up rain-wise this season.

I am reading… How The Light Gets In by Louise Penny. I finished My Life with the Saints by James Martin, S.J. on Sunday and devoured all of The Whole Enchilada by Diane Mott Davidson that day as well.

I am hoping… Daniel goes down at a reasonable hour tomorrow night (tonight?) so that I’m not up late trying to get quiet and private prayer time.

I am looking forward to… Wednesday morning when Daniel goes back to school and when my laptop should hopefully be arriving!

I am learning patience with the whole laptop sitch. Jon has the patience of a saint to be sharing with me.

Around the house… cats sleeping or walking across my keyboard being needy. (Ahem… EDDA!)

I am pondering… why Fed Ex had to ship my laptop from China to Alaska (that part makes sense) and then to MEMPHIS!!! Seriously, wouldn’t it be easier to ummm… ship it to California next????? (Actually, I should know why they did it as I’ve worked in shipping and logistics but it still makes no rational sense.)

A favorite quote for today… “God, grant me the serenity
to accept the people I cannot change,
which is pretty much everyone,
since I??m clearly not you, God.
At least not the last time I checked.

And while you??re at it, God,
please give me the courage
to change what I need to change about myself,
which is frankly a lot, since, once again,
I??m not you, which means I??m not perfect.
It??s better for me to focus on changing myself
than to worry about changing other people,
who, as you??ll no doubt remember me saying,
I can??t change anyway.

Finally, give me the wisdom to just shut up
whenever I think that I??m clearly smarter
than everyone else in the room,
that no one knows what they??re talking about except me,
or that I alone have all the answers.

Basically, God,
grant me the wisdom
to remember that I??m
not you.

–James Martin, S.J. (borrowed from The Jesuit Post)

One of my favorite things… orange cats with good motors.

A few plans for the rest of the week: ABA therapy for Daniel, the rest of the week, errands on Wednesday morning, massage on Friday, and Respite Night on Saturday.

Hosted by The Simple Woman’s Daybook

7 Quick Takes: Update on the Laptop Situation, Daniel’s ER Trip, and Being Sheenazing

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Interesting… My friend Kristen posted a link to this article on Facebook. I don’t know if the presence of said missionaries is the exact reason why some countries did better than others in terms of development but it is an interesting theory.

— 2 —

Apparently, I’m “sheenazing”. I got nominated for a Sheenazing Award in the “Best Blog by a Non Papist” category. I’m up against Ann Voskamp and Ree Drummond so I’m not expecting to win, but hey… I’d love your vote anyway! To vote, click on the picture.

The 2014 Sheenazing Awards

— 3 —

Orphans. Do you see these darling children?

L-R: Brett and Iris

Brett still needs a mama. Iris finally has a family committed to her and they have an appointment in her country next week.

— 4 —

Touched. I’m a James Martin, S.J. fangirl and after finishing The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything, I wrote him a note telling him how much I appreciated his writing and his Christian witness. This week, I got a note back from him thanking me for the one I sent him. This is a guy who has many balls in the air that he’s juggling and I’m touched that he took the time to write me back.

It’s probably fitting that I got through 218 pages of My Life with the Saints (re-reading it) while I was sitting in the E.R. with the wee bairn on Monday.

— 5 —

Update on the Daniel bear. The bear child was completely wired on Sunday night (would not go to sleep until 1 a.m.) and woke up coughing on Monday. It was a school holiday so we lazed around the house all day in our jammies and I did a few breathing treatments on him. The problem: he started “belly breathing” (where you’re using your abdominal muscles to move air because you’re not getting good lung function) and the breathing treatments weren’t helping. I decided to take him to the ER at UCD Medical Center which was packed. Thankfully, there was a bed in the pediatric ER so we got in immediately after being triaged. Daniel was feeling so awful that he was content to curl up in my lap on the gurney. They did two breathing treatments and gave him some steroids which got him back to normal. We also broke in a new resident and a new ER attending physician which was lovely. (It’s funny in a twisted way that we know one of the ER physicians so well that she comments on how much Daniel has grown.) After 6 hours in the ER, we got home around 12:30 and Jon bathed Daniel while I ate something (my first solid food in 12 hours — wheeeeeeee!!!!) and put him to bed while I showered.

Little boy has been home the last few days and has done well thus far. We were doing breathing treatments every 4 hours on Tuesday and Wednesday and we’ve only had to do one of them today.

— 6 —

Source of the Stephen Colbert quote from last week. I found the video with the quote I referenced here on the Colbert Nation site. I’m having issues embedding it so you’re going to have to take my word on this one. The pertinent quote is at the end of the video.

— 7 —

Update on the laptop situation. The case manager from HP called me on Wednesday morning. My laptop is shipping as we speak and will be here on/before the 28th. Of course, I don’t have my tracking number memorized and I’m not checking Fed Ex eleventy-billion times to see if it has cleared customs in China yet. Noooooo…

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at ConversionDiary.Com.

Ways to Be Pro-Life

Today is the March for Life in Washington DC as well as smaller versions in cities all over the nation. Why today? It’s the anniversary of Roe v. Wade being decided.

If you’re reading this blog, you probably know that I’m pro-life. I do not, however, believe that the pro-choice side is completely evil and I have friends who have had abortions so I have no desire to rail against women who have them — for all I know, I could have easily had one in college if circumstances had been different. Instead of making my entry today all about abortion, I thought I’d list off ways that you can be pro-life… from conception to death.

[+] Donate to your local crisis pregnancy center. Seriously, many are woefully underfunded and can use all the help they can get.

[+] If you play an instrument, go give a concert at a retirement home. You will brighten their day.

[+] Work for comprehensive immigration reform so that people can immigrate legally and not be stuck in decades of waits and catch-22’s.

[+] Donate medical supplies to doctors who are going to perform medical missions abroad. If you’re a healthcare professional, consider taking part in one.

[+] Volunteer at your local soup kitchen or food bank.

[+] Advocate for orphans.

[+] Write an encouraging note to someone telling them how they impact your life positively.

[+] Tell a young mother how adorable her child is… even if you’re lying through your teeth. Believe me, WE NEED TO HEAR IT!!!

[+] Pray for someone who has wronged you.

This is not an exhaustive list by far but it’s a good start.

Five Favorites: Irish Folk Songs

Five Favorites

Here’s another foray into my eclectic tastes in music!


“I’ll Tell Me Ma” by Van Morrison and the Chieftains. This is the song that spawned my search for Irish music on YouTube this weekend. My parents have the album on both CD and cassette tape so I grew up with it. Doing a search on just the song “I’ll Tell Me Ma” led me to several other groups.


“Star of the County Down” by Orthodox Celts. A Serbian band singing Irish and Scottish ballads — I love the harmonies which remind me of Eastern Orthodox church music. This is also a favorite tune of mine.


“Rocky Road to Dublin” by the High Kings. Apparently, I was under a rock 5 years ago (or living in Montana) when these boys burst onto the folk scene. They’ve got a pedigree for folk music — one is the son of one of the Clancy Brothers and two performed in Riverdance in addition to being on Broadway. Yet another has toured with other bands. I love their version of this song.

Contrast this with the version that the Rolling Stones did with the Chieftains which has some riffs of “Satisfaction” in it.


“The Little Beggarman” by the High Kings. I love the puirt à beul (“mouth singing” — it’s kind of scat-singing in jazz) and the little bits of choreography in this one.


“Marie’s Wedding” by the High King. More lovely puirt à beul in this one and I love that they’re doing it conversationally in the beginning. You also get to hear the individual voices which is another wonderful thing about their version.

Here’s the Chieftains version with Van Morrison.

Go love up Hallie.

7 Quick Takes: Laptop Update, Folk Music, and 49’ers Fan Schtuff

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

My friend Tim. So how many of you saw the viral video in which a pastor who was a 49’ers fan did an “abbreviated service” this past Sunday? Yeah, he is actually a former colleague of ours from our days in Montana and he is a heckuva guy. He and his wife hosted us several times when we were splitting our time between Great Falls and home when Daniel was in the NICU as well as visiting me in the hospital. He is a native northern Californian who was transplanted to Montana for ministry and is a rabid fan of all the Bay Area sports teams, especially the Giants. (I swear… I can hear him watching the game all the way from Montana when they play.) I miss him, his wife Sandy, and their son John very much.

And yes, he *did* go back and do a REAL worship service after this was filmed.

— 2 —

OMG NCIS!!!!! I got seriously verklempt at the end of NCIS this week. Why? It wasn’t because Delilah was paralyzed after her accident. It was the scene where McGee calls Gibbs down to the hospital and asks if he can sit with him. Gibbs comes down and goes and sits with Tim as a way to lend him some support. I remember the people who came to be with me in the hospital when I’ve had surgery or when Daniel has been in the NICU/PICU/peds ward. They didn’t have to say beautiful words of wisdom or advice — all I really needed was for them to sit with me and hold my hand. It is really hard to communicate just how much their presence meant to me even if they just sat there quietly with me.

— 3 —

Speaking of the 49’ers… We have a bit of a family war going on at the moment because my extended family is mostly in western Washington and of course, I’m down here in northern California. I predict amusing status updates this weekend. I feel sorry (but not all that much) for my evil twin — his wife is a Green Bay fan, his cat is a Panthers fan, and he lives in Seahawk territory. He commented that it’s impossible to watch football right now without pissing anyone off.

— 4 —

The Boxer. I think I’ve posted this before but it’s a video of Allison Krauss and Shawn Colvin doing a cover of “The Boxer” from a concert honoring Paul Simon. It’s one of my favorite Simon & Garfunkel songs and it’s nice to have a recording that I can sing along with in my specific register. (Not that I was doing this at 2 a.m. or anything…)

— 5 —

Also a fan of this one… This is “You Ain’t Going Nowhere” from a Bob Dylan tribute concert 20 years ago. There are others I like from this particular concert (Tracy Chapman singing “The Times They Are A-Changin'” for example) but this particular one fit with the Shawn Colvin theme of the last Quick Take.

Aw heck… here’s Tracy. I love her performance because she doesn’t embellish anything in the song and her bluesy voice just fits perfectly.

— 6 —

Last video, I promise. I’m listening to Simon and Garfunkel as I blog this.

— 7 —

Orphans. Do you see these darling children?

L-R: Brett and Iris

Brett still needs a mama. Iris finally has a family committed to her and their dossier has been submitted to her country.

— Bonus —

Update on the laptop. I received the hard drive from my old laptop in the mail on Tuesday. I was WTFing until my mom pointed out that this was not a bad thing in case my backup on my external hard drive is messed up. I got ahold of my case manager at HP yesterday and he told me that the ETA for the build of my new laptop is January 24th and he’s getting it shipped to me 2nd Day Air so I’ll get it on the 26th. *sigh* It means sharing a Macbook with Jon for another week or so but I’m getting a new laptop out of it so I shouldn’t complain… too much. #stillwhining #firstworldproblems

Pray for Jon. I’m not the easiest person to live with when I’m going through laptop withdrawal symptoms.

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at ConversionDiary.Com.