There are many, many ways to say I love you, and really, it’s as easy as showing you care.  I don’t know how you say I love you, but these are some ways I show my friends and family that I love them:

I say I love you when I wish you a good morning, and a good night.

I say I love you when I remind you that it’s cold outside and you need a thicker sweater.

I say I love you when I cook, paying attention to every detail until the food is perfect, not just in flavor, but in balance and nourishment.

I say I love you when I look into your eyes.

I say I love you when I follow through in my promises to you.

I say I love you when I ask you to change your outfit to something else.

I say I love you when I do something about it, because actions speak louder than words.

I say I love you when I take care of myself, because I can’t serve from an empty cup.

I say I love you when I take care of you, because your cup is empty.

I say I love you when I look forward to seeing you again.

I say I love you when I try my best to be the best version of myself, and not a second-rate version of somebody else.

I say I love you when I ask you to keep me company.

I say I love you when I keep you company, and…

I say I love you when keeping you company is actually troublesome for me.

There are many many ways to say and show I love you, but perhaps the one you hear the most is me actually saying I love you.

Have a most wonderful Valentine’s Day!

Seasons of spirituality

There are seasons of spirituality.  Everything has seasons.  The year has seasons.  Sports have seasons.  Vegetables and fruits have seasons.  Even TV shows have seasons!  Life has its seasons, and each season has its own cycles.  Within each season, there is a spiritual season, that echoes the seasons of the year:  Spring, Summer, Fall, and Winter.  We will focus on the spiritual seasons.


During the Spring spiritual season, everything is being born again.  One is thankful for every little thing to God, and one is also hyper-aware that there is more to life than just the daily things we see.  There is a feeling of love in the air.  It’s like a little child, in wonderment of the world and every new discovery she makes.

Seasons of spirituality - road lined by trees.

Road lined by trees.


During Summer, spirituality peaks.  One’s spirituality reaches a certain maturity.  One knows God is there, and there is a certain understanding that things will work a certain way because one’s faith is just that strong.  Perhaps we have discovered what we think is all there is to know about the faith.


During Fall, spirituality wanes.  This doesn’t mean that you stop believing in God or that you change to a less intense religion.  It simply means that the peak has been reached and that the time to harvest is now.  A lot of the prayer and active time in the faith should pay off, or so we think.


During Winter, spirituality really dwindles.  There is a certain dryness in the air.  One knows that God is there, but one isn’t necessarily aware.  It may feel like God is cold, and that the environment is desolate.  It is perhaps hard to pray, or it may feel like there is no point to praying.  Only to be followed by a stronger Spring, when the cycle repeats again.


Spiritual Dryness

According to Wikipedia, Spiritual Dryness or desolation is a lack of spiritual consolation in one’s spiritual life. It is a form of spiritual crisis experienced subjectively as a sense of separation from God or lack of spiritual feeling, especially during contemplative prayer.

Those of us experiencing spiritual dryness – another term for “I am not feeling like God is around”- are in good company.  Many saints have experienced this, for example, St. “Mother” Teresa of Calcutta, St. John of the Cross, St. Teresa of Avila.

My journey through spiritual dryness

In 2017, I became aware of the term, and that awareness, that spiritual dryness exists, helped lead me back to my faith.  I learned, as noted above, that I am in great company.  And that it is probably part of the seasons of faith.

Girl on sand holding feathers on her hands

Spiritual dryness

For a very long time, perhaps since around 2012 or 2013, I had not really felt the presence of God.  I even went to the Holy Land, expecting to have a life-changing experience, and while it was a great experience, it was not life-changing.  I did feel the presence of God, which convicted me of His existence, but there was no super-natural “I’ve-been-touched-by-Jesus” moment.  There was no sudden re-conversion.

Even though the Great Pyramids of Giza truly are a wonder of the world, I enjoyed my time in Jerusalem a lot more than in Egypt.  By no means am I minimizing the Great Pyramids, or the breathtaking beauty of Petra, or the beautiful beach in Dahab, there was just something special in Old Jerusalem.  Yes, the sights were beautiful, but there was indeed some sort of holiness to the place.

Perhaps I had set my expectations a little too high, but you do read all the time about how wonderful so-and-so’s experience in the Holy Land was, almost like there was something magical.  While I felt no magic, I was able to affirm that God exists, just is not always felt.

On the up and up

I am still trying to figure out why, other than there are seasons.  When I was 15 or so, almost every encounter with God I had was really special.  There was always some kind of beautiful feeling and God’s presence with it.  It was a season of great belief.  But as I aged and grew farther away from the faith for several reasons, I stopped feeling this greatness when I pray, leading to Spiritual Dryness.  I believe there is a God that I should dutifully obey, but He is not felt.

Either way, it seems like this season of dryness is on its way out.  I am feeling more the presence of God, and His graces.



Reverence:  Word of the Year

Reverence humility and compassion written on the wall by a bicycle.

Reverence, humility, compassion

On the same vein as my previous post, my inspirational word of the year is “REVERENCE“.  I’ve been doing some deep thinking about this word.  So I started from the beginning:  According to Google, Reverence means deep respect for someone or something.

I like to think I am deeply respectful of other people’s opinions and decisions, but I often find myself mentally criticizing their opinions and decisions.  (I justify it with “at least I am not making my criticism public, but nevertheless, it still is criticism, not always constructive.)  So this is definitely something I could work on a little more.

I was also thinking that reverence has to do with humility.  The more humble I am, the deeper my respect will be. Yesterday, during Mass, Fr. Paul was telling us about humility and how this means putting ourselves in the position of the other person.  This way, we are more likely to see where they are coming from, and react with compassion.  Lack of reverence could also be lack of humility.  I know I could always use help in the humility department.

Practical Steps

I don’t think I lack reverence, but humility.  Either way, I could use some more respect at Church, for example, not taking my smartwatch or my smartphone into Church.  I don’t look at my phone while Mass is happening, but I get easily distracted with my smartwatch.  So that’s something that’s gotta go.  You know, my messages are so important that Mass can wait… NOT!

So, with that said, more humility is needed when I mentally criticize others.  I need to put myself in their position, and try to understand.  I need to see through their lens, and act compassionately towards them.  This will hopefully lead to more reverence, deeper respect toward my neighbor.



St. Adelaide of Burgundy

I have often said that if I were to be the patron saint of anything, it would probably be abuse victims, (among others) and Jennifer Fulwiler‘s saint generator gave me St. Adelaide of Burgundy  (also known as Adelaide of Italy).

I can really identify with St Adelaide of Burgundy.  She is, among other things, the Patron Saint of victims of abuse, brides, and in-law problems.  She is also the patroness of princesses.

“Adelaide of Italy, also called Adelaide of Burgundy, was a Holy Roman Empress by marriage to Holy Roman Emperor Otto the Great; she was crowned as the Holy Roman Empress with him by Pope John XII in Rome on February 2, 962”

During her life, she widowed, remarried, had in-law and abuse problems, and founded churches and monasteries.

How I identify with St. Adelaide

It is not a huge secret that I am a survivor of abuse, and a bride-to-be.  Thankfully, I don’t have in-law problems.  It is probably a huge coincidence that I was “assigned” this saint by a piece of code on a website.  However, it is pretty spooky how fitting this assignment is to me.  Maybe God does work in mysterious ways?  Also, here’s a little kicker:  Her Feast Day is December 16 – very coincidentally the day my fiance and I started dating 3 years ago.  Perhaps the little prayer I said before I clicked on the button had something to do with it!

How St. Adelaide will be with me for the year

I will learn more about her life, and ask her to be my intercessor.  After all, this year I will be a bride, and I will continue healing from the years of abuse I have suffered.  I hope that by learning more about her I will be a better bride, better wife, and better person all-around.

And Happy New Resolutions!

I follow this amazing site called  Hear me out, this is probably one of the sites I geek out on the most. Because I love the RenFaire, and I am fascinated over anything medieval, really.  These guys seem to be the real deal when it comes to Medieval Studies.

One of their recent articles is pointing out the resolutions for the New Year 1404, from an Italian merchant man named Gregorio Dati. He wrote these resolutions down “… so that [he] might remember [his] promise and be ashamed if [he] should chance to break it.”

He resolved from Jan 1st, 1404 to refrain from doing business on Holy Days, to refrain from carnal pleasures on Fridays and until the next day (it is unclear if he was married, but I digress), and to remember that we need God to provide for us.

My take

I don’t know about you, but even though these resolutions are literally from 614 years ago, I think it’s something we all need to follow through with NOW.  It would make our hectic world a little more relaxed, I think, and humble us down to human once again.  I mean, with the rise of the “nones” we need to remember that there is only one God and no idols.

Who keeps Holy Days as days of rest and family anymore?  I know for one, I will try my best to keep these days Holy.

In this day and age with hookup culture, I think it would be brilliant to refrain from sex at least on Fridays and Saturdays.

And, one I need to follow more often:  We need God to provide for us.  I so often forget that I can’t do anything without God, it’s ridiculous.  Pride takes over me so easily, and it is probably the worst of sins out there.

So, while I have the most typical “this-day-and-age” resolutions of losing weight and fitting into my wedding dress, I will add these 3 from Mr. Dati also.

2017 was a good year for me.

In February I met my friend Laurie, and we’ve been regular buddies ever since.

In April I said YES to the love of my life at Sunset Point in Arizona. <3

In July I started getting really serious about reconnecting more with my faith.

In October, my fiance moved to Illinois to be with me, and so we can start hashing out the details of the wedding, and obviously, to start our life together.

In December, I have gotten busy with little projects that make me happy, and that I hope to carry into 2018, and hopefully beyond.

This is a general synoptic of what happened during the year.  This year, I focused on decluttering and mental health stigma.  Don’t worry, posts about that will continue in 2018.  Also, I reconnected with my faith.  It is so important to me, that it is worth mentioning twice.  I have even been going to church somewhat regularly. *gasp*  With the exception of bad days.  In 2018, I am planning to be a bit more regular in posting, although I hold no promises.


Clearly, I made an effort in 2017 to write more in my blog, and to reconnect more with my faith, also, I seem to have an obsession with clutter because I struggle with that.  In 2018, there will probably be more of the same, because I enjoy talking about these things, but being that 2018 is the year I will get married, there will probably be some talk about the typical bride stuff:  losing weight (hey, I somewhat impulsively got my dream dress in my size at the time for a very good price, and then I went ahead and gained weight… pretty smart if you ask me… not!), planning a wedding, and “the jitters” (although for some reason I don’t see myself getting them, who knows, right?).

What else am I going to do in the new year?  pay off my credit card debt and save up some money.


It is no secret that I am into crafting, making, and creating, even though I don’t normally post about it.  I mean, it’s in my bio, last time I checked.  I received a Cricut machine for Christmas from my lovely fiance.  Not just any Cricut, but the Maker. *faints*

I’m so excited about it!  For several reasons.  1) I had been wanting one.  2) It came from my adorable fiance. 3) Did I mention I had been wanting one? 4) I swear up and down that I will be able to make so much stuff with it!  Can hardly wait!

I am still learning how to use it, as I have 0 experience with the Cricut or any machine of its type.  I have been able to make a few things here and there, including the birthday card and envelope for my fiance’s birthday.

I’m just beyond excited. 🙂