Crazy Days

The Shoe Song: A gift to every parent who’s having a tough day

YOU GUYS!!!!! I have been waiting not-so-patiently to share something with you: Last week, musician Marie Miller was a guest on my radio show on SiriusXM. I’ve been a fan of hers for a while, so I was thrilled that she came down to Austin just to do the show with me. I wanted to do something special to commemorate the occasion, so I gave Marie a challenge: I asked her to write a song using nothing but texts between my husband and me as the lyrics. When I heard the song right before last Thursday’s show, I actually jumped up and down... Read More

Driving a monster truck to EWTN: the tale of the first 24 hours of my media tour (with a special guest illustrator!)

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Gather round, internet, for I have a tale to share with you. This is the kind of story that would be better heard by a roaring fire, each of us holding goblets of mead, a man in a horned hat rattling clam shells in the background. And like all great epics, it requires illustrations befitting the scope of the hero’s journey. Just as it would have been anticlimactic if the pages of Beowulf were interspersed with iPhone selfies from Heorot Hall, this story cannot be sullied with real photographs. It requires the pen of a great illustrator to... Read More

The secret to not being overwhelmed

Shaun the Sheep overdose.

One of the turning points in my life was an email I received from Fr. Joseph Langford, MC back in 2009. He was close friends with Mother Teresa, and she worked with him to found her order of priests. I had the privilege of getting to know Fr. Langford because I was working with him on a website project, and one day when I was feeling particularly overwhelmed, I decided to seek his advice. I note that this was taken while we were re-organizing the house. (If you interpret that to mean that the living room looks much better at the end of a typical... Read More

A day in the “life”

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Skating in riiiiiight under the wire, here’s today’s post! It’s a glimpse into my day yesterday — which is the perfect post for me because it counts as an update and also answers the question about why I’m flailing in my own blogging challenge. BACKSTORY FOR NEW READERS: It will help you understand the chaos below to know the following: I have six kids ages 9, 7, 6, 4, 2, and 10 months. My husband is a lawyer/CPA. It is tax season. I have a book coming out in April, published by Ignatius Press. And now for more details... Read More

Ice cream truck, you’re killing me

Unlike Mommy No-Fun, Yaya is always happy to take the kids to the ice cream truck.

You know how I was going to get all the important things done the other day, but I wrote a post instead? And then I got sick? Well, I finally had a free moment to sit down and tackle some of these pressing items, but an unfortunate event took place, and now I am forced to write instead of working yet again. It’s cool, though. When Joe settles in to watch sports tomorrow night and the house suddenly goes dark because I never did get around to paying the electricity bill, I know that he’ll smile to himself and say, “At least Jen... Read More

22 things I learned in my first ten years of parenthood

Doll face-down in urine on the couch, 2010

As I was sitting here thinking of all the awesomeness that this wonderful, new, non-2013 year will hold, it occurred to me that my oldest child will turn ten this fall. Ten! I have officially been a parent for a decade now, and I’ve had six kids during that time. When I took a step back and considered that I’ve been living in Baby Central for the better part of my adult life, it occurred to me that I must have accumulated some knowledge during that time. I mean, surely I’ve learned at least one or two things about this whole “keeping... Read More

Are you suffering from Tired-Think? A quiz.

The reason I've had so much experience with Tired-Think lately.

For a friend who has been tired lately. Based on much personal experience. 1. List the five objects nearest to you in five seconds. How many did you refer to as “the thing”? A. None! I named each item quickly and accurately. B. 1 – 2 C. 3 – 4 D. I stared at the wall and drooled on myself instead of undertaking this challenge. 2. When you look at your to-do list, how does it make you feel? A. I think of how great it will be to accomplish all these wonderful things! B. A little overwhelming, but I’m up for it. C. It... Read More

The days are long (and loud, and sometimes involve messes in resort lobbies)

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Grace ventured out here to the Wild West a few weeks ago, and we finally got to meet in person. I was going to drive down to her hotel and show up at her room whether or not we had anything arranged, so the fact that she actually invited me avoided a potential run-in with security guards. Grace has three kids under age four; I have six kids under age ten. I brought four of mine to our meetup (though the crazy toddler was in the group, and she counts as five normal children), so let’s just say that we had our hands full herding our minions... Read More

So we went to a brewery and got a one-eyed cat

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Two weekends ago we took a tour of the Cedar Creek Brewery when we were visiting relatives in east Texas, and we walked out with a souvenir mug and a one-eyed cat. This is an extremely surprising turn of events for a family that already has too many mugs and said they didn’t want a pet. Joe in particular is not a cat person, and I think he’s still trying to process what happened. There he was, sipping a Pale Ale, admiring the gleaming boil kettle, when the kids suddenly started clamoring about how he needed to come over to the owner’s... Read More

Netflix giveth, Netflix taketh away

A list of Netflix movies that evidently involve a guy named Shaun.

I was going to write something else today. However, since my blogging time has been adversely impacted due to circumstances that you will understand presently, I am forced to pen this letter to a certain streaming movie service instead. Dear Netflix: First of all, let me take a moment to thank you for the excellent service you offer. I have often thought that your wide selection of streaming movies and shows is the sole reason that I am able to cook dinner each evening. My husband once suggested that we cancel our account in a brief and very unfortunate... Read More

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