Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What I Learned Wednesday #22: Speedy Questions Edition

It's 11:21 p.m. PST. It's still Wednesday in Los Angeles! This still counts! lol. This will be a very quick list since I got caught up in school stuff once again and I still need to do nighttime prayers. I was planning on doing it this way anyway, but now there will be more typos than usual. lol.

This week I'm focusing not on what I learned but what I hope to learn before next Wednesday... and I am making this list public so if I fail, I can say that I did (no lying allowed. ever.) and will learn to do a better job the weeks after that.

1. Is RCIA the same everywhere? Would it be the same in, let's say, London as it is in Los Angeles? I am a revert who was baptized at 3 months, did her first communion at 8 years-old, and was confirmed at 13 years-old. I have never needed to know about RCIA which is my excuse, as sorry as it may be. I know that confirmation in Mexico is done at younger ages (hence why I was confirmed at the "old" age of 13 and not 16, in the States, like I wanted) so I am wondering if RCIA is the same everywhere.

2. What major differences (if any) are there in how things are done in England and the U.S. in regards to how Mass is celebrated, etc? Seeing a pattern emerging? You caught me; this is all novel sequel research but, really, it would be awesome to find out if things are done the same or if I would need to learn how to phrase prayers differently.

3. How many Latin Masses are regularly offered in the Archdioceses of Westminster and Los Angeles? Again, novel research but I'd love to see the differences between both Archdioceses.

So, that is my quick list of questions I hope to have answers to next week. If anyone of you would like to help a sister out, let me know. lol.

And now it's 11:33 p.m. and I still have prayers to get through.

I hope y'all are having a great week thus far!

As always, thanks for reading and God Bless! :D


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Baby, the Nun, and the Weird Noise During the Canon of the Mass

I've been wanting to write about my experience at Mass last Saturday night since Saturday night but since I've been busy, I'm writing it now. I don't think I've ever experienced so much joy and so much... weirdness... during one Mass. I guess I'll start with the good, go to the weird, and go back to some goodness.

The Baby
There is a little 3 month old baby girl whose family usually sits in the front pew or in a pew close to us. She's a gorgeous little sweetheart who loves to smile whenever I wave at her... which is often at least twice during Mass because she likes to look around. She just started smiling at strangers (though I've gotten her to smile for me every time I've seen her) so it's the sweetest thing to see during Mass. I don't think she's a distraction as some may think. While I wait to be blessed with children of my own, I am able to look at her and thank God for the gift of life and the blessing her family has received by her birth. She also reminds me of how important it is to teach children to love and venerate the Church from a young age. I sometimes look at her and my heart says "this is what your vocation will be one day", which brings great joy and peace.

The Nun
This past Saturday, we had nuns in the front pews which made this fangirl squee since we've only seen them during the 6:45 a.m. Sunday Mass. I still have trouble distinguishing orders by their habits so I cannot tell you which order they were. They were in their habits, though, and it made me happy. Anyway, while we were in line to receive communion, one of the older nuns saw the baby girl in her mother's arms and she couldn't stop smiling. When the mother noticed, she turned the baby in order for the nun to say "hello" to her... and the reactions were priceless. The baby girl lit up like I'd never seen her before. She was smiling and laughing and was just radiating joy at seeing the nun. Likewise, the nun had a great smile on her face and was herself radiating happiness. It was the most beautiful sight I've seen in a long time.

The Weird Noise During the Canon of the Mass
The weird part came during the Canon of the Mass. My Spiritual Director (who was celebrating the Mass) was reciting the Eucharistic Prayer when, all of a sudden, I heard a woman sort of humming in an almost taunting tone. It sounded like it came from somewhere near the front of the church but I am not sure. Anyway, it was so weird and so inappropriate that Fr. G looked up and around trying to figure out what it came from. If you know my SD, you know how difficult it is to distract him during the Mass so you know it was odd. After Mass I asked mom if she had heard the noise and she said she had but she heard it as if Fr. G had dropped the paten (which he hadn't), not a humming/taunting sound. Either way, it was a weird noise that had at least three of us heard. *shrugs*

Bonus: The Gift of Tears
As most of you know, I had not been able to receive the Eucharist since the first weekend in June because of stomach issues/restricted diet. Since the doctor told me that I do not have a gluten intolerance, I've been counting down the days until I could receive the Eucharist... which finally happened this weekend. I teared up as soon as Mass started... while I was walking down the aisle to receive communion... while I received it (cue: flood of tears of joy)... and while I was kneeling and praying after receiving it. Words cannot express how ecstatic I was. I just cried and I thanked God for everything He'd done for me up to that point. I felt as if my heart could burst from how happy I was in that moment. When I was finally ready to dry my tears, I looked up and saw that the baby girl was looking at me very closely. It was as if in that moment three things became clear. First, that I became aware of just how much I loved God (even more so than I had previously thought). Second, how much I wanted to receive the Eucharist daily. Third, how much I truly believe, in my heart, that my vocation is of wife and mother... and how much I look forward to teaching my future children about the beauty and love of God and the Church.

So, there you have it. It was quite an interesting Mass and I really wanted to share my experience with y'all. :D

And now I need to go to do some research about Catholicism in England for... something. No spoilers just yet. lol.

I hope y'all are having a great week thus far. :D

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

Friday, October 25, 2013

7 Quick Takes Vol. 8: Life Happens Edition

-- 1 --
Yes, I know... I dropped the ball for this week's What I Learned Wednesday post but it was for a good reason. I received my student number earlier in the week (officially an Aggie!) and I had to do my student orientation stuff online since I obviously don't live in Utah and can't go on campus easily. It definitely took much longer than anticipated so I spent my evening doing that. As for earlier in the week and day, I've been busy so I didn't get a chance. I may just write future posts ahead of time (when I have free time) so that I quit missing them.

-- 2 --
I found out that I have the option to attend graduation after I finish my post-BA/pre-MS program because I am technically getting a second Bachelor's (Bachelor of Science this time) degree. I am entertaining the idea but that is way in the future (at least a year and a half from now) so I still have time to decide. Still, it's so lovely of them to include us Distance Education students in the graduation ceremonies. I may just stay on for their grad program... which would mean moving to Utah for at least two years. We'll see.

-- 3 --
I had my spiritual direction meeting yesterday and it was all kinds of awesome. I need a major overhaul in my prayer life so these meetings are definitely necessary. It was also decided that I need to re-discern my vocation. I still believe that I am called to marriage (you know, when Prince Charming decides to stop for directions so he can get here. Men... :-P) but I want to be sure that I've properly discerned my vocation before I move forward.

-- 4 -- 
And while I'm on the topic of marriage: no, the Pinterest board I created (which I named "Going to the Chapel") is not for my wedding plans. I know some of you congratulated me on Twitter but I can assure you that I do not have any thoughts of matrimony at the present. The board was created to help plan the wedding of two other people, neither of who are me. I am not going to try to plan anything for myself until there's been a proposal. Capisce? lol.

-- 5 -- 
NaNoWriMo is starting in exactly one week from today... which means I'm going to be busier than usual. I have a ton of research to do this week in preparation for it, too. I want to write the entire sequel to Will and Lina (which is the current title to my first completed novel) during NaNo so that readers won't hate me too much for how the first novel ended. And that's all I'm saying so there's no spoilers. lol.

-- 6 -- 
I have been really missing some of my friends lately. Many of them I lost touch with when I deactivated my Facebook account because it's how they primarily keep in touch with everyone else. I've also been missing friends that have gone missing on Twitter. It's just a crummy "Emmy misses her friends" week for me. I need a hug in a cup (tea), a PB&J sandwich, and a hug. Stat!

-- 7 --
I've been encourage to either start podcasting or to prepare myself to start public speaking as part of my ministry (which I had no idea was a ministry? lol). I am not sure whether I have the time/energy to do it with everything else that I have going on but I may try it in the near future, before the SLP program takes over my life and after NaNo lets me breathe. lol.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

And that's it for now. See? I can do quick takes properly. lol.

I hope y'all had a great week and have a fab weekend. ;)

As always, thanks for reading and God bless. :D

Monday, October 21, 2013

Best. Week. Ever. Thank you, God!

Isn't my new desktop crucifix pretty? It comes from the Holy Land. *insert Catholic fangirling squeals* 

Having a week that is packed with back-to-back good news and events is rare. However, I am declaring last week the "best week ever"... or at least of the past 4 years. So just what happened to make it the best week ever? I shall tell you.

I know y'all know about my big news from last week's What I Learned Wednesday post; that I was accepted to Utah State's Communicative Disorders and Deaf Education program. If you read the post you know that I'm only doing this in the meantime (the financial crunch in an expensive city is real, y'all) and that I will pursue a Master of Arts in Theology when things are a little more financially stable (and I am more prepared to teach or do something with the degree). That was huge... but then things got better.

On Thursday, I went in for my follow-up doctor's appointment. They made me wait nearly 3 months for my gluten test results. My doctor is actually new as my former doctor abruptly left so he didn't know I was supposed to get my results. I did ask him before I left and he said that they had come back negative. That means that after a three month Eucharist-free life, I can once again receive it.

I was on cloud 9 when I heard that. I had not attended daily Mass because I cried every time I went to Mass and couldn't receive the Eucharist in either form and going to daily Mass would've been torture for me (not to mention emotionally draining). And before you ask (and I got this asked a lot), I couldn't do wine because I had a bad reaction the last time I had done it. After you spend the day in bed with bodily aches, you tend to not try what made you sick again. I actually let my SD know at Mass yesterday and I think he was as stoked as I was because he saw how it drained me. 

So, daily Mass and communion starts again tomorrow. I couldn't yesterday because I haven't gone to confession in two weeks and I missed Mass last Sunday so I didn't feel right receiving (even though I was sick last Sunday). Thankfully my parish has confessions 4 times a week so I can go tomorrow. :D Odds are I will cry tears of joy. Y'all don't know just how much I ache (yes, ache; sounds dramatic but I don't know how else to describe it) for the Eucharist. Sure, I offered it up but to be able to receive again is amazing.

And then on Saturday came a huge day for me. As many of you know, I have so much respect for Patrick Madrid for several reasons. He gave me my first real break as a writer by publishing two of my articles in Envoy Magazine (issues 9.3 and 10.1). Not only that, he kept in touch with me while I was at my horrible CINO college alma mater and offered me the support I needed to get through it in one piece. He's sort of like a second dad (and I've even jokingly asked him to adopt me) and I feel blessed. 

Patrick talking about why he's Catholic. Taken from the merch table where I was hanging out.
Well, this past Saturday I was finally able to meet him in person for the first time since I "met" him online over 4 years ago. He was a speaker at the Catholic apologetics conference that was held at the St. Joseph Center in Alhambra (run by the wonderful Carmelite Sisters of the Most Sacred Heart of Los Angeles). I didn't get to talk to him for long but I was happy for the time we did get to chat. (side note: For the record: no, I am not posting the picture that I took with Patrick because, as some of you know, I was threatened and it was substantial enough that it was decided that it was no longer safe for me to post any pictures of myself online.)

I did not stay for the entire conference (insert rant about the transportation network/system I use), I was able to stay for part of it and, I have to say, it definitely reminded me of why I love being Catholic. If you haven't gone to an event where he's speaking at, I highly recommend you do. The "okay, young lady, Theology as soon as possible" feeling definitely burned brighter in my heart. I know God wants me to do something for the Church but I also know He wants me to take care of other things before I can do this.

By the end of the week (Sunday) I was feeling pretty awesome. I had an amazing week and it ended with me getting a crucifix from the Holy Land *points to first picture in post*. All of this got me thinking about how I may never not think that everything happens for a reason.

I have this motto for whenever I feel like the world is crumbling around me: we go through hard times because something wonderful is coming up and it'll make us appreciate it that much more. I truly believe this. I have been struggling with stomach problems for over a year now yet and, as part of doctor tests, I couldn't receive the Eucharist for a couple of months. If I loved it (Eucharist) before, I am even more enamoured with it now. I struggled at a terrible school where professors made me feel like I was a thorn in their side and was nothing but an unwanted pest, and I got accepted (in three days!) to my top choice for my pre-MA SLP program.

All I could do during Mass was smile and thank Him for all the blessings he had bestowed on me last week. I try to thank Him for everything that has happened in the past but all these things have made me even more hyper-aware of all the blessings I get, whether or not they are good. Even the bad things have a silver lining that show God's love for us.

Anyway, I just wanted to share this all with you. I also want to thank all of you who have consistently prayed for me; for my health, for my school situation, etc. I couldn't have gotten to where I am without y'all. :)

That's it for now. I have a couple of things to do -- including planing a wedding before next Friday. Yep. Last minute plans though this has been a wedding in the making for several years now. A bit of a headache but it's a fun one and I get to look at beautiful churches in England soon. ;)

I hope y'all had a wonderful weekend and have a fantastic week this week.

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

What I Learned Wednesday #21: Big News Edition

1) If you haven't already heard via the blog's FB page or my Twitter account, here is my big news: I was formally accepted into Utah State University's Communicative Disorders and Deaf Education program. That's a mouthful. lol. I received an email yesterday (almost as soon as I woke up) congratulating me. It was extra special (for me) to have received the news yesterday, too. As I tweeted,

If you've been a reader since the blog's first year (some of you have stuck around these past - almost - 6 years), you know that I have a special devotion to St. Teresa of Avila ever since I had that dream about her. I'm a big fan of the Discalced Carmelites as well so yesterday was the perfect day for the news. I have a feeling I'm going to have her and St. Therese (and the Immaculate Heart of Mary) on my mind throughout the entire program since I did novenas to all three of them (though not all for school) during the entire application to decision process.

2) If you're wondering if this means I'm giving up on my Theology M.A. or on writing about Catholicism because I'll be focusing on Speech-Language Pathology, the answers is a big NO. As I posted a couple of weeks ago (after my big post on my fears about doing a "secular" job), I feel like this is where God wants me now. I really need to strengthen my knowledge of theology before I can hope to either teach it or do something with it. The plan is that I will do Speech-Language Pathology first and then do Theology due to familial and financial responsibilities that I have. Of course, now my journey will include me trying to incorporate what I learn as a speech therapist into my faith (and vice versa) so there will always be new material to cover in the blog. It will be a challenge as I was told how intense SLP programs can be but nothing worth having or doing is easy (even trying to lead a holy life is hard with all the temptations to sin) so it'll be good for me to try to find a good balance between school/career and faith. God and my faith are the most important things in my life (though, obviously, God trumps all) so it'll be interesting to see what happens.

3) I don't start my classes until next May (first time in years I'll have classes on my birthday) so I will have time to focus on my CINO college project. And, actually, after the response about submitting stories from elementary school through high school, I decided to open it up to submissions at any and all grade levels as long as they took place at CINO schools. We really need to do something about this horrible epidemic... and it is an epidemic at this point. I've seen well education young women get their orthodox beliefs warped by liberation theology and I can only guess that there must be schools that start their students with some terribly unorthodox beliefs/theology as well. So, please, submit any and all stories you have so we can make a stronger case against funding and/or sending students to these so-called "Catholic" schools. There are so many good school that are faithful yet struggle to remain open. It's really a pity and I really want to help as much as I can. The first posts regarding this will start next week.

I'm seriously behind on reading so I'm going to go do that. I've just started feeling better from the stress so I'm going to try to continue trying to relax until the knots in my shoulders are gone. :) 

Oh! There is a chance of potentially having good news tomorrow morning (that involves finally being able to receive the Eucharist for the first time since early June) so please say a little prayer for me if you can.

That's it for now. :D I hope y'all have been having a great week thus far. :D

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

Friday, October 11, 2013

Attention all CINO College Survivors...

I know I'm starting this a little late (I had been planning on it being up last month) but I've been so busy that this is the first week I've had a time to really sit down and plan things out.

As some of you may have already read on my Twitter, I have a project in the works that involves helping others who are either in CINO colleges or are considering applying to and/or attending one. This project has been in the works for a long time but I think it's ready to see the light. I already have some people on board but I am hoping that more people will help out. Interested? This is what I'm looking for:

If any of you are CINO college survivors and/or know people who attended a CINO college and were (undoubtedly) less than pleased with what was "taught" in them, I would love to hear your story. For legal purposes (I don't want to get sued and I'm sure you don't either), names of professors and colleges will be omitted. You can choose to have it posted as "anonymous" as well.

The point of this project is that I want these stories to be heard and to potentially help other faithful Catholics who are either considering these schools or know others that are.

Today, we received a letter (addressed to my father no less) asking for donations of $1,500 to $10,000. Are they serious? Why on earth would we want to continue funding it? I've already said that if I ever have enough to donate, I am going to donate to schools that are orthodox and not CINOs.

Anyway, if you'd like to help out, please contact me via Twitter, through the blog's FB page, or even through email at catholicnerdwriter at gmail dot com. I am so passionate enough this -- about all the damage they not only inflict on the faithful but also those who aren't Catholic but who want a good Catholic education -- that I am ready for the fight.

I hope some of you can help and I look forward to hearing from you.

And now I'm off to cheer on the United States Men's National Team (futbol; soccer).

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

What I Learned Wednesday #20: "Traddie" Edition

Before I get any crumbs from anyone:

1) I don't like putting labels on Catholicism (okay, fine, I like using "orthodox" -- small o) but for this post I'll use "traddie" to mean fans of pre-OF Mass/Vatican II (I can feel some of you cringing) Catholicism.

2) Yes, I'm a "traddie" in the sense that I love wearing a mantilla, attending daily Mass, prefer using the Douay-Rheims Bible, think Latin Mass is wonderful (yes, I've attended), and adore Gregorian chant. See how I keep using "traddie" with quotations? Yeah, don't hate.

And now this week's (quick) WILW items.

1) Did y'all know that there is an online bookstore that carries only traditional Catholic books? Oh yeah!! I was very excited to find Baronius Press Ltd. I think I'm even more excited to finally find a good copy of the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which I pray daily. I was enrolled in the Brown Scapular last year; I take my commitments seriously and reading the Little Office is amongst the requirements. ;) I can't tell you how many books that I have been wanting (but couldn't find good copies of) have made it onto my Christmas and birthday wishlist. For the record, a gentle reminder that my half-birthday is coming up next month. Just putting it out there in case my brother stumbles onto this post. lol. ;)

2) I found a great tumblr blog named Trad Catholic Problems that has some awesome memes. My top three memes at the moment are:

Okay, I can't relate to the last one (though I would totally do it!!) but definitely the first two. I have gotten comments of thinking myself holier than others (and other not so nice comments; hello, CINO college survivor, err, graduate) for wearing a mantilla. Seriously, I just think it's a beautiful tradition; covering our heads as a sign of respect towards our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament. If it was good enough for my paternal grandmother (whom everyone says I take after), it's good enough for me. Also, I fangirl every time I see nuns wearing their habits at Mass, at the grocery store, or even at Disneyland.

3) I didn't learn this but I still haven't figured out why there's such a fuss made when a young Catholic (especially fellow Millennials) say they like "traditional" Catholicism. As I mentioned earlier, I love a lot of "traddie" things. This doesn't mean that I think of myself as holier or superior to others. Some of my fondest childhood memories include attending Mass with my mantilla-wearing paternal grandmother (may God rest her soul) in the small town where my dad was raised in. My prized possession is the mantilla my father bought for me only 4 months before he passed. I wish I could attend Latin Mass more often but the nearest parish that offers it weekly, St. Therese in Alhambra, is a bit of a drive for me and I have yet to get comfortable driving on the freeways. I think Venerable Fulton Sheen is fantastic. I hate clapping in Mass. I like my Masses solemn. These are just my preferences.

There is a rise in numbers that are preferring this "route." Latin Mass attending, "bead rattling", communion via tongue only Catholics, especially amongst those in our 20s and early 30s, are even gaining momentum in Los Angeles from what I've seen in my circle of friends and acquaintances. I don't have a link on hand (the one with the actual stats) but I'll post it when I find it. Anyway, someone please tell me what's so shocking about this. Please. Some of us are just drawn to it; no need to make a stink about it.

I was so not in the mood to blog (I want to get back to my book!) but I decided to take one for the team and write this quick post. By the way, I don't know which team. I just wanted to use the idiom. ;)

Alright, it's cold and raining (read: perfect book reading, tea drinking weather) so I'm going to enjoy it while we have it. I am seriously loving learning about all the married saints and blesseds and have been trying to do everything early so I have more time to read. So many saints I didn't know existed but have amazing and inspiring stories. :D

I hope you're all having a good week thus far. :D

As always, thanks for reading and God bless. :D

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

What I Really, Really Want

♪ Yo, I'll tell you what I want, what I really, really want... ♪

Yes, you may cue the Spice Girls' "Wannabe" right now since that is exactly where I got today's blog post title from.

And, yes, this blog post was inspired by the song Krystin and I agree is the government's current theme song ("I Want It Now"). :-P

These past two weeks I've had a serious case of the "I really, really want this!"-s. There have been two things I really, really want: to get accepted to the only school I applied to for my second Bachelor's (Bachelor of Science this time) degree and an improvement in my prayer life.

If you've been MIA and are just getting back to reading the blog: Hi! Welcome Back. Yes, I am going for a second Bachelor's degree. I majored in Religious Studies and not Speech-Language Pathology so an additional year or year and a half of undergraduate coursework is required. This is the only school that I know of (that I was remotely interested in, anyway) that gives a second Bachelor's degree when you finish their program. That doesn't mean that I will attend this school for grad school (though I may apply if I like their program) but it's definitely a step in the right direction. It comes highly recommended (and, bonus, I can do the entire thing online) so y'all can guess how much I want it. I want it. I really, really want it.

What else do I want? Oh yes, an improvement in my prayer life. I've already discussed this with my spiritual director but I haven't really touched on it here. I've been distracted way too easily when I pray lately. Whether it's in the morning or at night, something's going to distract me. On my mom's days off, it's usually her. Seriously love my mom but she has a tendency to make a lot of noise when I tell her I'm going to do my morning prayers. To be f air, she's hard of hearing so she doesn't think it's that bad but it is for me since I like it to be as quiet as possible so I can concentrate. When I'm home alone (most of the week), it's always something else. My downstairs neighbor's son playing "The Final Countdown" on the keyboard (I kid you not: every. single. day.), my next door neighbor slamming his closet shut, the dogs barking, someone telling... something. These noises don't bother me as much when I'm not praying but, boy, they all seem to get louder when praying. At the end of my prayers, I have no idea what I just "prayed." All I really, really want is so be able to concentrate and focus solely on praying and having a conversation with God.

Of course, in these two examples, I've only been focused on what I want. While I really, really want to get into this particular school I applied to (whose name I won't share until I get either accepted or rejected), I know that there is always a chance that I won't be accepted. While I want my prayer time and prayer life to be a certain way, I know that I won't always get it. I need to step away from my wants and focus on the fact that my will won't be done, but God's will.

I think we sometimes get so caught up in thinking about what we want that we forget that God has bigger and better plans for us than we do for ourselves. I wanted to go to UBC or Oxford. I wanted to graduate from college on time (which would've been around 2007). I wanted to live in Vancouver or England by now. I wanted my father not to die from cancer in 2009. I wanted to be married and have a family by now. None of these plans panned out for whatever reason but I remain hopefully that I am still doing God's will.

Never have the words "in God's time" and the idea of trusting God completely been more felt than during the last year or so. I've been through so much (but, really, who hasn't?) and it's really tested my faith. I'm grateful though, because it's only made it that much stronger. Whether I get into *** (initials ;)) or whether my concentration improves while praying, only time will tell. Either way, I will be grateful for whatever I get and thank God for it.

Alright, since I have the day off (not by choice; slow freelance week), I'm going to keep reading Married Saints and Blesseds Through the Centuries by Monsignor Ferdinand Holbock. I'm only on page 52 but I'm already in love with this book. The way Mama Mary and St. Joseph's marriage is describe is truly beautiful (and I bet it would make the "she didn't remain a virgin" people think twice about their beliefs). I can't put it down... and I'm actually itching to pick it up again. ;)

I hope y'all have a good start of week thus far! If you have any prayer requests, please let me know. :D

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D

Friday, October 4, 2013

7 Quick Takes Vol. 7: Crummy Week Edition

-- 1 --
Guess who's finishing her novel tonight. ME!!! Finally! After years of work (on and off because of school, work, and familial responsibilities), it shall be done. I have to admit that I'm procrastinating on the final chapter. It's in my mind and I just need to write it down but I am reluctant to do so. I know I need to finish it as it represents one chapter of my life and I'm ready to move on to the next. Still, I am not ready. I will shed big crocodile tears. lol. I will write more about this soon.

-- 2 --
I applied to my top pick for my post-BA/pre-MA program at the end of last week but got everything sent in this week. Since I didn't major in SLP (Speech-Language Pathology), I need to do all the undergrad coursework before I can apply for the MA program. The school I applied to is out of state but they have a great online program (it comes highly recommended by those who have been in my shoes) so I am keeping my fingers crossed. As of today, they've received only one of my transcripts but I am sure they'll have everything by next week. Prayers please?

-- 3 -- 
It's been a stressful and busy week so I've been pretty M.I.A. from Twitter for that reason. Tons of work (though, funnily enough, one of the few non-stressful things in my life right now) has kept me occupied which is why I haven't blogged either. I'm hoping next week slows down a bit because I feel drained both physically and emotionally. Yup, it's been one of those weeks. I need tea and music. Stat!

-- 4 --
My faith was seriously challenged this week. Not in the "I don't believe this" way, but in the "what's more important?" way. There were serious temptations to place a greater importance on other things and I wasn't happy about it. When I did catch myself doing it, it was like my entire being rejected the temptation. Remember when you were little and you ate so much of something you loved... and then it made you sick? Kind of like that. I became angry at myself for allowing it to happen. I honestly felt like I was being suffocated and trapped (like a really bad panic attack for those of you who know what that feels like; like an elephant sitting on your chest) for a good two days afterward. Thankfully I'm back on track now but it was a hard couple of days.

-- 5--
I finished the St. Therese novena this past Monday night and I almost immediately received roses from her. On her feast day I saw a pink rose beginning to bloom where there were no other roses. I was talking to my mom about school (see #2) when it happened. I actually stopped dead in my tracks when I saw the rose and said "St. Therese?" I walked by the same area today but didn't see the rose I saw on Tuesday. Instead there were red and pink roses I hadn't seen earlier this week. *shrugs* I'm counting it as signs. ;)

-- 6 --
Okay, this is sort of "grumpy" topic but I need to say this. I am not comfortable with the level of familiarity and downright disrespect some people (especially men) are displaying with me both online and offline. People with whom I've talked to maybe once or twice online (in brief messages, no less) or have never spoken to in person seem to feel like they have a right to speak to me as if they have authority over me. Others treat me like I'm a child who doesn't know better. I have to ask: why? Why the amount of disrespect? Why are you meddling in my business... and on things I don't even discuss? I like to think that I behave and carry myself in a manner that says "I'm friendly but don't cross any boundaries." So, please... be kind. I was already stressed out so this level of rudeness is really making me a real grump.

--7 --
If anyone else is having a crummy week, I hope this .gif makes you smile. :)

'Til next time, thanks for reading and God bless! :D