Four Tips for Unsquishing Your Life + Join Us in Bend!

Four Tips for Unsquishing Your Life + Join Us in Bend!

Last night, as I was compiling today’s to-do list, I noticed that things on my calendar are looking a bit, um, squishy again, which means I am trying to shoehorn too many things into not enough time and it’s getting pretty … uncomfortable. I suppose juggling multiple obligations for multiple family members, end-of-school year stuff, traveling (for super happy reasons!!), writing and speaking gigs, and, oh, a MOVE (!!) can do that to a person.

{{{S Q U I S H}}}

= life without abundance; life not centered upon Jesus Christ

Thanks be to God, squishiness is no longer my preferred state of being, especially since I’ve realized: a) it’s completely unhealthy for me and, by extension, my family; and b) with God’s help, I can prevent the squish from taking over.

What I’m learning from this side of my epiphany is this: To remain un-squished, one must be mindful and intentional about remaining un-squished. Somebody embroider that gem on a pillow!! LOL

I don’t know about you, but I desire a more abundant life. I don’t want to live in the squishiness that feels full, but is really only full of lack. I don’t want to feel as though life is bearing down on me, threatening to squeeze the life out of me and my family at any given moment. I want to be whole, healthy, and healed.

We all need time away to reflect, replenish, and renew, regardless our station and season in life. It’s okay to recognize our need to put some distance between ourselves and our “squishiness” (whatever that means to you) and connect with our Heavenly Father. Even Jesus Christ (Who–spoiler alert–was actually God) spent regular time alone in prayer. Last time I looked, I am not God. So … why do I think I am better than He? Why do I think I can just keep striving and rolling and trying … and not take time to simply be with Him?

Here are some ways I conscientiously work toward unsquishifying my life, in no particular order:

1) Prayer

Instead of rewarding myself with chips or brownies (heyyy–don’t judge), I’ve been trying to take a moment to hang out with God instead. It may sound silly, but that little bit of time in prayer gives me something those extra calories and fat grams never could–communion with the One Who made me, sees me, knows me, loves me, and Who will never, ever leave me feeling shame, regret, or isolated, unlike an empty bag of potato chips. The great thing about prayer? It comes in many forms, and can be done pretty much anywhere I am.

2) Silence + Adoration

I realize silence can be super difficult for some, especially if you’re knee-deep in the throes of family life, or struggle with Constant Brain Swirling-itis, like I do. Lately, I’ve been slipping away to spend regular quality time with Jesus in the silence (well, usually) of the Eucharistic Adoration Chapel. Sometimes I pray the rosary or a chaplet; sometimes I thank Him for my blessings; sometimes I wrestle with a problem or ten … it honestly doesn’t matter if I don’t say or do anything; what matters is that He is there, and, in the silence, He is able to speak to my soul. Whether I only have five minutes or (preferably) an hour or more for silence, it always leaves me feeling more peaceful, more joyful, more wellness in my soul.

3) Sacraments

There’s nothing like a big (or little) splotch of sin to make me feel squishy. I don’t care how much vacation time you’ve earned, or how big that bonus check was, or how clean and tidy your house is, or how many 5ks you’ve run. Sin = squish. It’s a different kind of squish, sure, but praise God if sin makes you feel even the slightest bit squishy; that means your conscience is working! Get thee to the Confessional–stat! A good Confession is a sure path toward unsquishification.

How long has it been since you worthily received Jesus Christ–Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity–in the Blessed Sacrament of the Eucharist? Receiving Jesus = instant unsquishification. Will you still have problems when you’re worthily and regularly pariticpating in the Sacraments of the Church? Well, sure. But your perspective will change. And your priorities might, too. I highly recommend trying it out for yourself if you aren’t already.

4) Retreat + Conferences

I’ve written about the amazingness of retreats before, but it bears repeating: take some time away for God to refresh your soul. Whether it’s just you and the Big Guy on a self-directed silent retreat or you and 400+ of your closest friends at an annual conference, we were made for communion. A retreat or conference is a wonderful way to reconnect with Creator and faith community.

Which leads me to an important invitation: Will you join us this June? 

NW Catholic Women's Conference logo

The first-ever Northwest Catholic Women’s Conference is happening in just a few short weeks near beautiful Bend, Oregon.

Women from all over the Pacific Northwest (and beyond!) are welcome to grow in our beautiful Catholic sisterhood June 23-24 at the Diocese of Baker Retreat Center in Powell Butte. Make friends, be with Jesus, and get a spiritual jump start to your summer!

You’re invited to join me, Kelly Wahlquist, and Sr. Maria Gemma as we share on the conference theme: Abundant Life in Christ. Adoration, Holy Mass with Bishop Liam Cary, and ample opportunity for Confession round out the schedule. Several awesome vendors will be on-site, providing resources and material to assist you in your faith journey. Three meals are provided with your registration fee.

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Check out the gorgeous grounds of the retreat center! It’s located right under the Three Sisters Mountains, appropriately named Faith, Hope, and Charity. Limited on-site lodging is still currently available, as are nearby hotel options.

Photo credit: Kristen Carter Nez
Photo credit: Kristen Carter Nerz

Registration is limited, and closes soooooon (June 20, 2017), so reserve your spot (and one for your sister, your friend, your neighbor, your aunt, your niece, and your other friend) TODAY!NW Catholic Women's Conference logo

It would be soooo wonderful to see you in Bend this Summer! You’ve been warned, though–I’m a hugger, but I will settle for a hearty handshake. 😉 So, my friends, until Bend, I’d love to hear from you in the combox: What are your go-to tips for “unsquishifying” your life?

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{SQT} Almost Summertime and the livin’ is busy

{SQT} Almost Summertime and the livin’ is busy

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It’s most definitely almost summer in Oregon, and Mother Nature is just plain showing off. It’s days like these that just make me praise the Lord!! Perhaps it’s my Franciscan background. Annnnyway – here’s some stuff I want to share with you this week. Yes, indeed-y.

1. Hey! They haven’t kicked us off the air yet! LISTEN to yet another new episode of The Visitation Project THIS SUNDAY on the all-new Mater Dei Radio at 7:30 p.m. PST. I still can’t even believe I have a weekly radio show. But it’s true. If you missed any episodes from previous Sundays, please catch up with the #TVPCrew via podcast here! Also … are you following #TVPRadio on Twitter? Instagram? You should be. Please do. We miss you when you aren’t around. 🙂

Show 3 Archive post
Ya Rabbi Jesu!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. There’s still time to register for the upcoming Summer hotness that is Catholic Women Rejoice featuring Jennifer Fulwiler of Conversion Diary + the Edel Gathering, Catholic Evangelist Kelly Wahlquist, and yours truly. Seriously – this is a no-brainer, West Coast ladies (and Idaho/Nevada/Montana gals, too!). For less than the cost of dinner and a movie, you will enjoy a FABULOUSLY refreshing and inspiring time with other Catholic women. And I hear Edel is on hiatus 2016, so if you want to get your party on with Jen, register today. Seriously. You will thank me. I promise.

3. Lots of interesting things happening around the web these days. Here’s the best article on the web right now (IMHO) about the Caitlyn/Bruce Jenner situation. Written by Jenny Uebbing, it’s compassionate, smart, and 100% Catholic. Read on, friend. Oh, and speaking of brilliant, this week Simcha Fisher reminded me (yet again) why I love reading her articles with this piece at the National Catholic Register about why Church teaching will not – indeed, cannot – change. “Humanae Vitae. BOOM,” she writes. Boomshakalaka. The other thing you need to know about is the #WhyIRemainCatholic project … please check it out and participate when you can. I really, really want to. I am trying to come up with all the words right now.

4. I know this is, like, light years away in internet time, but I just recorded my first Building Bridges podcast  with the unstoppably amazing Jenna Guizar (Blessed is She Guru, all around Queen of Awesome) and the indefatigable sassafrass Cristina Trinidad (Faithfully Social, etc. etc.). They were a blast to chat with, and I look forward to when my episode airs … in 2017. Just kidding. July 20, 2015.

5. What else have I been up to? Oh – my latest article on Keeping the Spirit of the Visitation Alive was over at CatholicMom.com (check),  RealCatholicMom was fabulously featured over at Catholic Sistas (check), I submitted my first article for Ignitum Today (not published yet, but check), I submitted my first for New Evangelizers (also not published yet, but check), and am working on my first article for LovesChoice.com (an adoption site), and my second article for Catholic365 (here’s my first). And I haven’t even mentioned the other podcast I need to submit to – STAT! before they “unannounce” my affiliation (gak!) – and the 5,000 words that are due at the end of the month … Woof. like I said: summer’s almost here, and the living is BIZZZZZY.

Photo courtesy of Anthony & Amanda Sloan
Photo courtesy of Anthony & Amanda Sloan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. And … shoot me now … I honestly cannot remember what #6 was going to be. Oh! I know. I am so blessed to be an affiliate for Organic Mama’s Shop. Shannon has GREAT stuff, y’all. Just the best. And, if you click through my link to order her amazing wares, you help support this woefully underfunded writing habit I posses. #bonus!!

Help support the #RCMBlog
Help support the #RCMBlog. Please and thank you so much. Please.

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. And now, without further ado, the cutest picture I took this week. Where we live, spring can be confusing. It was 88 degrees this day, but the next it was in the high 50s and rainy. Some may call my son silly – I call him a prudent prophet.

A boy and his bear.
A boy and his bear.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Peace.

heather

Linking up with the super cool Kelly at This Ain’t the Lyceum. I would challenge her to a dance-off, but I’d totally lose.

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{SQT} SUPER GINORMOUS AMAZING FANTASTIC #CWR15 ANNOUNCEMENT!!!

{SQT} SUPER GINORMOUS AMAZING FANTASTIC #CWR15 ANNOUNCEMENT!!!

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It’s been so long since I linked up with Seven Quick Takes that Jen’s not even hosting the party any more! But no worries. Jen’s spirit lives on. And Kelly is awesome. I saw her literally drop a mic last summer and not bat an eyelash. Lady has skillz.

But I digress.

Please, be my guest and follow me down the rabbit hole for just a moment …

  1. Guess
  2. what
  3. is
  4. happening
  5. in
  6. 28 Weeks????
  7. No, no, no – it’s not a baby. C’mon guys. LOOK!!!

Catholic Women Rejoice Graphic

I am totally freaking out!!! It is going to be fan-FREAKING-tastic awesomeness. And that’s just the beginning.

See? Told ya Jen’s spirit lives on. 😉

xoxo,

Heather

 

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