7 Quick Takes Friday

7 Quick Takes about our epic floor installation, the Lent Awards, and the TV show addiction that is bringing my life to a standstill

— 1 — We finally did it: we got rid of the carpet of doom and had hardwood floors installed. The upside? No more giant carpet beetle snack bar in the middle of our living room. The downside? CHAOS ON A LEVEL I CANNOT DESCRIBE. Outside, it was wet with wind and temperatures in the 30s and 40s. We had limited access to the kitchen. As the work progressed downstairs, our homeschooling family of eight was confined to smaller and smaller spaces in our three-bedroom house. It was like The Cask of Amontillado, but upstairs and with more fighting over... Read More

7 Quick Takes about my surprise 2015 patron saint, mourning a great loss, and your new favorite drink recipe

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— 1 — It’s been a while since I’ve had a chance to check in here on the blog, which means it’s past time for a 7 Quick Takes post! — 2 — As you may already know if you follow me on Facebook or Instagram, my wonderful grandfather passed away earlier this month. He was 100 years old. As blessed as we were to have him for as many years as we did, his passing was still hard to process. I was his only grandchild, so we were certainly very close. I frequently posted here on the blog about the amazing meals he’d... Read More

7 Quick Takes about eating bugs at Ivy League Christmas parties and the sounds of Lino Rulli’s homeschool takeover

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— 1 — We still don’t have a Christmas tree. I just walked by a broken Advent candle in the toy pile next to a naked Barbie. But it’s all good, because I GOT MY CHRISTMAS CARDS DONE! (Not “done” like “sent,” but “done” like “we got a decent picture and the newsletter is written.”) I’m so excited! As I say every year, this is one of my very favorite holiday traditions. I love getting everyone’s letters and pictures each year. Even for the families that I already know... Read More

7 Quick Takes with a big announcement, a drinking horn, a gift coupon, and a desperate call for the Advent rock!

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— 1 — On October 2, 2008 I wrote my first “7 Quick Takes” post. Soon after that I made it a link-up, meaning I put some code on the bottom of each of my own 7 Quick Takes posts so that other bloggers could submit links to their own posts of the same format. In the six years since then, not a single Friday has gone by that I haven’t written a 7 Quick Takes post and hosted the linkup (or at least posted a note with a lame excuse about why I couldn’t). The 7 Quick Takes blog party has been part of my life week in... Read More

7 Quick Takes about (finally) being on Facebook, the GoodReads Choice Awards, and chatting with Jeannie Gaffigan

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— 1 — I am thrilled to announce that my book, Something Other than God, has made it to the semi-final round in the GoodReads Choice Awards! We are on round 2 of 3, and voting for this round ends tomorrow (Saturday). I am profoundly grateful for your votes in the first round. The book is one of only 15 chosen in the Memoir and Biography category, and is the only religious book on the list. It’s up against memoirs by celebrities like Rob Lowe, Robin Roberts, Cary Elwes, and Hillary Clinton. If you have a moment to go give it a... Read More

7 Quick Takes about co-hosting with Lino Rulli, cool book covers, and the best Halloween moments

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— 1 — Well, that was ridiculously fun. Lino Rulli came to Austin and I co-hosted his show with him all week. He tried homeschooling my kids; we talked to Abby Johnson about her crazy life as the activist mother of four kids (three of them under age three); we had a visit from the Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist; and we had girl talk with Heather Gardner and Leticia Adams, complete with a bottle of wine. Like I said: ridiculously fun. (The whole week of shows are available on demand if you’re a SiriusXM subscriber.... Read More

7 Quick Takes about last-minute Halloween costumes, a great new book for Fall, and popping the Dom on a Tuesday night

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— 1 — Yesterday I issued a “$10 and 10 Minutes” Halloween costume challenge on my new Facebook page! I asked people to give me suggestions for Halloween costumes that use no more than $10 in supplies (outside of normal household stuff) and take no more than 10 minutes to put together. I got a bunch of fabulous suggestions, which you can see here. Who knew being on Facebook could be this fun? — 2 — We had our pastor, Fr. Dean Wilhelm, over for dinner on Tuesday. We talked, laughed, got blessings for our house and... Read More

7 Quick Takes about South Dakota, The Shoe Song, rap battles, and why I should not ask people if I can pray for them

— 1 — By the time you read this, I’ll be on my way to South Dakota! I’m speaking at St. Lambert in Sioux Falls on Friday at 7:00 and at Immaculate Conception in Watertown at 9 AM on Saturday. If you’re in the area, come say hello! — 2 — How is this for a crazy travel schedule? I’m flying in to Sioux Falls this afternoon (Friday), speaking tonight, getting up early to travel almost two hours to Watertown on Saturday, speaking in the morning, driving almost two hours back to Sioux Falls, then flying... Read More

7 Quick Takes about podcasts, getting back into a routine, and asking your radio guests to fold your laundry

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— 1 — Well…that was an insane six months. Since April, I’ve released a book, done four out-of-state book/media tours, celebrated six family birthdays, co-hosted the Edel Gathering, took three young children to North Carolina for ten days, started the homeschool year, and started a radio show. Last week marked the end of the Six Months O’ Craziness — I don’t have any major upcoming commitments that would significantly impact our weekly routine, and I’m getting used to doing the radio show. It was a... Read More

7 Quick Takes about driving in DC, meeting fabulous people, and outing myself as an airplane stalker nerd

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— 1 — I’m back from the DC trip! I gave five talks, did two media appearances, four book signings, and hosted my radio show live from SiriusXM’s Washington studio, so it was quite the adventure. Honestly, it wasn’t as stressful as it sounds. I got to meet so many new people, connect with friends whom I’d never met in person, and even enjoy a few moments in quiet hotel rooms! It’s good to be home, but I’m already looking forward to to get back to the that area one of these days, hopefully bringing... Read More

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