Listaliciousness: Tom Hiddleston Moments, Sleepy Prayers, and Responding to Trials

Finals week is here! I just hope that I can get through it and be prepared to leave for Disney next Sunday. That being said, I will try to write a bit each day. However, some of my posts might be reblogs. On the positive side, that will let you read some material that touched me.

Here are some links. There are not 10 today, but I hope that you enjoy them.

  1. Halle Berry’s daughter raises money for charity with lemonade stand – What a cute idea! Children can be so considerate.
  2. Tom Hiddleston: Top 10 moments – He is a great man and wonderful actor. These made me laugh.
  3. Joining the Fellowship: Catholic Lessons from Tolkien – Here is another article that I wrote. The Lord of the Rings has so many deep lessons in it.
  4. Why Sleepy Prayers Have Value – Wow, I really need to remember this as I try not to doze off at Mass because I am so tired.
  5. Writers Are the Best Speakers – Interesting post. I never thought about it that way before.
  6. Responding to Trials – What a beautiful post! Thank you for sharing these wonderful stories with us.
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Giving Up the Hardest Thing for Lent

St. Mary Magdalen

The Anglo-Catholic Church St. Mary Magdalen

Ah, Lent. The time of the Church year when an anorexic has a great excuse not to eat.

Part of me wishes I could go back to that way of thinking. However, fasting from food was not a prayer for me. This action brought me no spiritual depth, peace, or grace. Instead, I ended up weary physically, haggard emotionally, and disenchanted spiritually. Only the shell of me remained, or so it seemed. Slowly, my recovery brought me back my voice, passion, and hope.

However, now I need to think of something new to give up for Lent. For those who do not know, today was Ash Wednesday. Millions of people are not having (or at least trying not to have) sweets, pop, chocolate, chips, you-choose-the-yummy-food for the next 40 days.

I am not one of those people.

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Good News is Everywhere

We so often hear bad news. Children are dying, corruption is rampant in politics, natural disasters wipes out homes, and anger drives families away from each other. These stories seem to be all there is in newspapers, television stations, and online today.

However, studying journalism has helped me to realize that many people involved in the news industry desire to raise awareness to difficult issues and prevent society from becoming apathetic. This driving force is admirable although it can be taken too far. We also need to the good news that surrounds us every day.

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One Thousand Thanks: 922 – 932. Free Time

Stump in stream

Sometimes we need to stop and take a break instead of rushing down the stream of life.

For the first time in months, my schedule was clear today. No school, no work, no meetings, no medical appointments – nothing. Yes, there were many items that I needed to attend to, but it was still wonderful to feel less pressured.

Today made me realize why the phrase “free time” has the word “free” in it. There is a freedom that you have when no one else owns part of your day. Being busy and productive brings a sense of accomplishment. However, too much happening can make you feel weary and trapped.

So here are some wonderful benefits to having free time that I enjoyed today and look forward to having in the future. I would love to hear what you appreciate about having a day where nothing is scheduled.

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Coping Skill: #57. Taking Responsibility and Making Amends

Flowers

Flowers

Many times, we can blame ourselves for situations outside of our control. My sister is grumpy, there is not enough food in Africa, someone abused me. This thought that we must fix the situation or have control over what happens leads to us trying to make amends for something for which we are not at fault. I must make her happy, I should not eat so much, I must be a bad person who should change.

However, sometimes we make mistakes. Then it is helpful to own up to our blunder and attempt to remedy the situation. Instead of pointing a finger at someone else or blaming mental illness, I need to use the difficult but important coping skill of taking responsibility and making amends.

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Father’s Day at Mass and Vespers

The outside of the Blackfriars

The outside of the Blackfriars

First of all, happy Father’s Day to you all especially everyone who is a father. Being a dad is certainly not an easy task. You have to protect your children while respecting their independent needs and allowing them to grow. You help children to walk, learn to bike, and teach them to talk before releasing them out into the big world. You must handle your own struggles while caring for the hurts of your family.

Those are huge responsibilities. Sadly, many fathers do not live up to these ideals. Of course, no man is perfect. However, abuse, neglect, shaming, and other harmful tactics are never alright. Everyone makes mistakes, but these pains should never be inflicted by a father to his children. If you have been hurt by your father, my prayers are with you on this day. Hopefully, you will be able to find joy and security in a different father figure such as a teacher, pastor, God, family friend, uncle, grandfather, etc.

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Being OK with Second Best

All I Want is Perfection

Have no fear of perfection – you’ll never reach it. – Salvador Dali

Last Wednesday, I went to the next round of my Toastmasters speech competition after winning first place at my club. All day, people questioned if I was nervous. My past experience at two competitions and multiple tournaments with speech team made me feel calm.

Well, I was calm until I drove to the event. Fear gripped me as I tried to steer my car and contemplate my speech. School had taken away time from practice, and play practice had drained from me the emotion that I usually invested in my topics. Perhaps this was a poor decision. Maybe I should give up right now, I thought.

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Can Fasting be Done in a Healthy Way?

Coping Skills #10. Personal Prayer

Lighting candles for Tazie prayer

Today starts the beginning of Lent for me and my family. During this time, we always worked hard to make sacrifices, donate to charities, and fast from something we enjoyed. Like many little children, I stopped eating sweets. If I could go the whole week (even Sunday) without desserts, then I felt so accomplished. God must be so happy with my self-control!

This sacrifice continued despite my compulsive over-eating. However, the draw of ice cream in the freezer downstairs sometimes pulled me away from my Lenten resolution. Consuming large amounts of desserts secretly helped me feel satisfied, peaceful, and joyful for a short period of time. Quickly, the shame and loneliness returned.

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Coping Skills. #10. Personalzied Prayer

Coping Skills #10. Personalized Prayer

Lighting candles for Tazie prayer

Lately, I have been extremely stressed about school.  For the first time in two years, I will be returning to college as a full-time student.  Last time I embarked on this challenge, I ended up deathly ill with my eating disorder.  Although I love school and learning, I fear what will happen as do my parents and medical team.  This semester could either strengthen the hope of living a “normal” life in me or cause me to collapse under all of the stress.

Thus this week I began turning more regularly to prayer as my mother often suggests.  Now, faith is a very important part of my life although I often feel guilty and unworthy of it.  However, the point of this post (and my entire blog) is not to evangelize or instruct.  There are many other wonderful bloggers who devote their writing to religious topics.  To tell the truth, I have such a great fear of offending people or being hated that I almost did not write this post.  However, I believe that prayer can be a powerful coping skill.

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