NAS: Summer Reading List

This is perfect! Today’s Not Alone Series topic is summer reading lists, which is a post I’ve been meaning to write. My summer reading list last year was more extensive than this one will be but I’ll try to give an overview of what I’ve read/am reading/am going to read this summer as well as recommending a few of my favorites.


Summer 2014

Pay it Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde
I read this at the very beginning of my summer. It was an interesting one. Curious and a little odd. A nice beach read with just a enough cheesiness to satisfy my romantic soul. It’s about a boy who comes up with a system for making the world better and tries to help who he can including his teacher, a vet who lost his eye, and his mother, a divorced and broken woman. The ending (*spoilers*) isn’t what you’d call happy but it’s hopeful. A couple months later and I still haven’t processed it all the way but that may be because I’ll never be able to form a complete opinion on it.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
I’m nearly done with this one. I’m reading for it my english seminar class this Fall. It’s funny, I’ve seen a few different adaptations of this book into movies and the Muppet version is actually quiet accurate. It’s a classic and not too long. So yes, even though it’s the middle of July, I recommend it.

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins
I bought this at a rummage sale this summer and frankly, I needed to read it before I head back to school. It’s a hardback and a little bulky and I’m flying. I knew it would be a fun read. I started it just yesterday as I was traveling back to my internship after a few days at home. And I just finished it. It was surprisingly similar to the movie and makes me want to read Mockingjay right now. It was an easy read and I got caught up in it pretty easily without getting sucked in. I liked it, and, because I’m me, appreciated the themes of self-sacrificing love/loyalty.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
I’m excited that this book is also on the list for my seminar class. I’ve been wanting to read it for a year or two. I’m hoping to read this between leaving my internship and classes starting (so still technically summer).



Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
An almost-gothic love story. A secret. A quiet girl who’s led a hard life and finds it hard to believe in someone loving her. A broody but romantic man who falls for plain and innocent Jane. It’s an old favorite of mine.

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
A spoof of a gothic love story. I haven’t read much Jane Austen. I actually find her stuff hard to get through (but that’s based off a couple years ago, which was the last time I tried to make my way through one of her novels) but in high school I ate up this one. It was funny, sappy, and just great.

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
I also particularly like this one. Yes, another classic. There were some great themes that I really enjoyed.

The Lord of the World by R.H. Benson
How do I explain this? It’s a Catholic apocalyptic book about the end of the world. Well-written and interesting.It centers around a priest who’s at first just living in a world full of the technology of the not too-distant future, atheists and apostates, an oppressive government, and euthanasia clinics. But with the coming go the anti-christ the world goes from terrible to worse and this priest is caught up in the middle of it along with some other characters who come and go depicting a span of human experiences during these end times.

Unwind by Neal Shusterman
This one’s a YA book but a good read and has a positive message about the value of life. Plus, I remember it being an exciting read. It follows

How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your Soul by Jason and Crystalina Evert
Here’s my review from last year. But basically, if you’re a Catholic young woman read this book.


So there you have it! You should be able to find any of these easily online. Any of these your favorites too? What are you reading this summer? Any suggestions to add to my ever-growing to-read list?


July Goals

Where has time gone?!

I haven’t written monthly goals since…mm March. Wow. That’s bad.  It’s now July and the year is half over. Well it’s time to jump back in!

So, we’ve reached the midway point of the year. As a reminder here are my 2014 Goals which includes A Year of Blogging Well. So far, I haven’t been doing all that hot. But that’s why I need to get back to it!

 2014 Goals--July

July Goals

1) Write 5 blog posts
I’ve been really slacking on blogging this summer. Frankly, there’s not much time. But I’ve also been struggling with being inspired and I just need to find a few topics that work and write. This is actually a low number considering my goal of 100 posts this year (this is number 31 so far. eek. ).

2) Compile my summer reading list
Okay, so summer is half over…but I’m still going to make this. It’ll just be really, really, short.

3) Read: Finish “A Christmas Carol” and one other book
I’m reading Dickens for a class I’m taking in the Fall. I’m not sure what the other book will be but I’ve got quite a few I haven’t read yet.

4) Make a summer budget (spending limit)
It may be summer but that trip to the mall a week ago taught me a couple things, one being that I shouldn’t shop when I’m having a bad week unless I have a set limit. Budgets in general are just a good idea for me when I go shopping.

5) Get ready for the new school year
This goal contains a lot, mainly: prepare for another year working with campus ministry (finish planning usher and lector training, and plan the first bulletin of the year) and prepare for the semester (maybe start on semester goals, think about classes and books and such).

6) Compile my road trip playlist take 2
Last August when a friend and I road-tripped back to Kansas for our pre-year campus ministry retreat we each made a playlist. Now we’re doing the same thing again this August! Complete with playlists 🙂

So there are my July goals. It looks like a lot when matched with working 40 hours a week and still trying to have fun and be social with my roommate. But we’ll see what happens. Check back at the end of the month to see how I did!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 19) 7 confessions edition

— 1 —

I almost forgot…again. But when I was looking at my reader I saw other bloggers’ quick takes and realized that yes, it’s time for another edition of quick takes. So that is confession number 1. Here we go!

— 2 —

I’m sick. Not a deep dark secret but there it is. And if  I sound crazy, know that it’s just the cold talking (hopefully). Funny thing is I used to like being sick to a certain extent. I liked that it got me out of chores and meant I could lounge around all day watching TV or reading a book. Sadly, it doesn’t mean that anymore. Because now I have to be responsible. So, yesterday I got up at 5:15 AM, went to work, worked for 8+ hours, clocked out for the last time, came home and called the financial aid office at school because of a small problem, went back to work to pick up my paycheck, went grocery shopping…you get the idea.

— 3 —

I might miss work, a little bit. So, yes, I am done, done, done at the cafe! Yahoo! No more dealing with my boss, or that place! (Unless I wind up working there next summer too. Let’s hope not.) My last day was interesting being sick. But it worked out ok and we had a slow day which was nice for me. It’s weird becoming a part of something, getting to see regulars and stuff and then to just leave a few weeks later. As he left, the local guitarist who comes in to serenade the lunch crowd twice a week asked me my name. I told him. Then he told me his first name and turned towards the door. It was sad, almost like something out of a movie.

— 4 —

VBS scares me. I’ll be helping out at a VBS next week and I get to be in charge of the 2nd-3rd graders. I helped out last summer and was in charge of games, which went ok but could certainly have been better. This summer I’m going to have a dozen or so kids under my wing and be responsible for them for the week. It’ll probably be fine. Bit still please pray for me.

— 5 —

I’m a bad blogger. My monthly goal review hasn’t been posted for July yet. Also, I didn’t accomplish them all (what a shocker). I’ll link back to this post and include a pingback once I actually write my review and my new goals for August. So, down in the comments you’ll find a link to it (unless you read this before I finish).

— 6 —

I haven’t even started my review yet. So yeah….a very bad blogger. (But I have been sick.)

— 7 —

I’m a very, very, bad blogger. You know my brilliant summer reading list? You know how I was going to read all these books and write reviews for them? Yeah. I’ve written one. Because that’s the only book I’ve actually finished. And I don’t think I’m going to finish many more between now and the 13th when I leave for school. Maybe I’ll squeeze in one more? I guess this also makes me a very, very, bad reader too.

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at Conversion Diary and check out the link-up!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 16)

— 1 —

My first Quick Takes on a Friday! It’s weird writing this on Friday…I haven’t spent all weekend thinking about this post.

— 2 —

Today in Texas the law that would ban abortions after 20 weeks and impose higher standards on abortion clinics is being discussed, and, is scheduled to be voted on in the texas state senate. There’s been protesters there. Today some of the orange-flaunting pro-abortionist crowd planned to get a little extreme. There were rumors that they planned to throw tampons and maxipads at the state senators and in fact, this short news report details all of the various items confiscated from people entering the senate gallery. All this goes to show the extreme measures some people are willing to take. this was after all the same bill that was filibustered and couldn’t be voted on in time because of a screaming mob of abortion supporters.

— 3 —

Now time for something positive. Recently, a priest reached out to a couple considering abortion or their unborn baby diagnosed with Down Syndrome. He asked them to consider adoption. They agreed if he could find a family in one day. So the priest took to social media. The response was overwhelming. The parish selected 3 from the numerous families that called and emailed to offer to the baby’s parents. It’s an incredible story of people reaching out in love and offering hope to a baby and parents they’d never met. Read about this here.

— 4 —

More positive news. I came across this story as well. (Can you tell I read a lot of pro-life news?) It’s about a 13 year old girl who was raped and chose to keep her child and about the organization that reached out to her, specifically a woman who was herself the “product of rape”.

— 5 —

I’ll be going a road trip with my good friend and future roomate on my way back to college in just a few weeks. We’ve already been planning what songs to listen to on the 9 hour drive.

— 6 —

My reading has been slow. Both books that I’m working on have been going slow and honestly the St. Kateri book is throwing me off a bit with its emphasis on the Native Americans’ oneness with nature and stuff.

— 7 —

I’m not feeling like getting into too much personal stuff today. I had a pretty bad day yesterday that I don’t want to talk about on here. I went and looked at my “Inspiration and Encouragement” board on Pinterest which I actually just maybe a week ago (so just in time) and my favorite quote from that is “it’s a bad day, not a bad life.”

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 15)


— 1 —

My last Quick Takes…on a Sunday that is. I’ve decided to move my 7 Quick Takes Posts to Fridays like the rest of the Catholic blogging world. This also means I’ll be able to better utilize the #7QT hashtag and hopefully, better join in the 7 Quick Takes community. I’m always reading other bloggers’ Quick Takes a day or 2 before I post mine. But no more.

— 2 —

Belated Happy 4th! I spent the holiday with family, first at my grandmother’s for a family get-together that was sadly under-attended and then with most of my immediate family to see fireworks. QUESTION:why do we say “happy 4th of July” more than “happy Independence Day”? Something I read online in the last few days made me realize that we don’t really say “Independence Day” anymore. Food for thought, if nothing else.

— 3 —

Did you hear about Lumen Fidei? Okay, what Catholic hasn’t heard of Pope Francis’ first encyclical…. It was begun by Benedict and was released on Friday. You read the whole thing here. I started but I didn’t get very far. Encyclicals have always had that effect on me, which is really quite sad seeing as how they’re a great source of information on Church teaching. I think I should make myself read this. It’s not too long right?

— 4 —

St. Anthony is one my most prayed to saints because I often lose things. Most recently, I noticed I was missing my 4 year plan. An amazing 4 year plan my really amazing professor made for me last semester. 😦 I know I brought it home, but now it’s missing. I realize I haven’t seen it in weeks and I have no idea where it is. I’ve been considering a St. Anthony novena. It’s also crossed my mind that maybe this a sign that I’m not supposed to be so plan-focused or perhaps not supposed to be so set on being an education major but let myself explore other possibilities.

— 5 —

Speaking of Saints, I stumbled on a really cool site with an alphabetical listing of patronages for saints. For example, click on C and you can see topics from “cab drivers” to “Czechoslovakia”. Click on one of those and you can see the saints who are revered as patrons for that cause. Through this, I think I’ve found some new go-to saints: St. Alphonsus Liguori patron saint against scrupulosity, and St. John the Apostle patron saint of editors, writers, and against foot problems (he was also the beloved disciple).

— 6 —

I’m planning a blog makeover. I’m thinking of doing a new theme and adding some menu buttons towards the top to make it easier to see posts that fit a specific category. For example, I could create a button at the top that when clicked on would show all my Quick Takes posts in order from newest all the way back to the first.

— 7 —

A new book. One thing I need to add right away is a book to my GoodReads widget to the right. I’ve started reading a book on St. Kateri Tekakwitha, which I will hopefully have done in time to write the review for her feast day, July 14th. Well, technically it won’t be her feast day because it’s a Sunday. But if it was another day of the week it would be Kateri’s first feast day as a saint. She was canonized last October. I half-stayed up to watch it, if you want you can read about that here. (Wow! This was only my 2nd post. Does it show?)

Have a great week! See you Friday!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

2013 Goals: June Review/July Goals

Well, another month has come and gone and the year is half over. (Doesn’t it feel like it just started??) Anyways now it’s time to take a look back at the past month, the goals I had, and how I did and to look forward and plan 5 new goals for July.

My 5 goals for June:

1)Say at least one decade of the rosary every day
Um, I guess I really didn’t do too good at this. I got maybe 10 days out of the month. But overall, I think my prayer life is improving.

2)Finish “How to Find Your Soulmate” and at least one other book–and write reviews for both
Yes and no. I finished Soulmate and you can read my review/reflection here. Bus I haven’t finished my second book. I did start “Rediscovering Catholicism” by Matthew Kelly but I haven’t gotten very far yet.

3)Make a decision about Spanish next semester
This took a back burner as the month went on. I think I am going to take Spanish though. It will be good for me, if I become a teacher and I’ve always wanted to learn.

4)Apply to more jobs, and get at least one interview (hopefully)
I did one better. I found a job and have been working at the cafe for over 2 weeks. You can read more about how I got the job here and about the awkward intersection between faith and my coworkers here.

5)Refresh my math skills (or lack thereof) in prep for my math for teachers class in the Fall
This one is a big no. I haven’t even cracked the book this month. Although, come to think of it, I have been doing math at work…so does that count?

BONUS) Write that letter to my future self
Yeah, no.

Okay, so in all seriousness I didn’t do too good this month. Hopefully I can apply myself more in the weeks ahead. There’s still a number of things that I meant to do this summer that I haven’t gotten around to. And for me, summer ends in just over 6 weeks. So July, it’s you and me and we are going to do this. 🙂

July goals:

1)Work on the following for school: Spanish and math

2)Write essays for application to education department 

3)Get my driving permit

4)Finish “Rediscovering Catholicism” and one other book. Write reviews for both.

5)Write that letter!!

So there we have it. Hopefully I can do better this month than last. It looks like a few of these will require diligence and consistency. Some scheduling is probably in order to help keep me on top of the school-related assignments and possible the reading. Only, I know I don’t stick to schedules without consequences looming over me or rewards being held out like a proverbial carrot. So, this month, I’m going to add a reward or consequence to each goal.

1)Work on the following for school: Spanish and math
If I do…
and get far enough, I get to spend a lazy day wearing comfy clothes, enjoying myself, and relaxing

2)Write essays for application to education department
If I don’t…I can’t go on Twitter for a week or until I’m done writing the essays (whichever comes first)

3)Get my driving permit
If I don’t…(through my own fault) I must tell the whole long blog post on why I can’t drive yet (I’m pretty sure I’m going to get it though).

4)Finish “Rediscovering Catholicism” and one other book (probably the book on St. Kateri). Write reviews for both.
If I do…I get to read the “Freedom Writers Diary” (which I’m looking forward to) next in my Summer Reading.

5)Write that letter!
If I don’t…I can’t eat  chocolate for a week (ouch!)

So there we are. 5 goals. 2 rewards. 3 consequences. 1 month.

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 14)


— 1 —

Ok, so I know this is late…but honestly, I forgot until after midnight that I had this to write. It’s been an unusual Sunday.

— 2 —

For one, I worked 9 and 1/2 hours today. It should really bother me more that I worked on a Sunday. I tend to try to keep that day sacred and restful, time for family and comfortable enjoyment.

— 3 —

I’ve started reading a new book! Well, in a way it’s an old book. I got Matthew Kelly’s “Rediscovering Catholicism” years ago but never read the whole thing. Now I plan to. You can see the book to the right in my GoodReads widget (I just got an account there).

— 4 —

This week my boss sat me down for a performance review. He’s very dedicated to making his business successful and wants to make sure that everyone working for him will make that a reality. He told me what people had been saying about me and what he’d been picking up from me: that I was smart, dependable and kind. But also that I was boring. well, people found me boring. I don’t add anything to guests conversations or anything like that. I’m an introvert naturally.

— 5 —

There was a day I think, when what he said would have offended me. When I would have gotten upset. I won’t admit it didn’t bug me. But what really stuck out to me was when he asked me if I wanted to just “be there” my whole life. After all, aren’t I called to more? Aren’t we all made for greatness as Benedict XVI said? But you know, I AM an introvert. In some situations that can be a problem. But it’s how I was made and, actually, it’s something I’ve improved on a lot in my life. I am less shy than I once was.

— 6 —

Posts in the works. I’ve got one or two that I’ll tweak and publish this week, so stay tuned for those. One has to do with feminism and I’m kind of excited about it. Also, since the month is now officially over I’ll need to review June’s goals and set new goals for July. So look out for a post on that soon.

— 7 —

Fortnight for Freedom. I also realize I’ve been bad about Fortnight posts. Real bad. Hopefully I can get something out this week relating to it before it’s over. In the mean time check out this post.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Review of “How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your Soul”

This is the first review in my Summer Reading 2013 series. It’s a review/reflection on “How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your Soul” by Jason and Crystalina Evert.

Summer Reading How To Find Your Soulmate

If you’re a Catholic girl or young woman you’ve probably sat through at least one awkward chastity talk. It might have been in CCD class, at youth group, in your catholic high school, or with your mom. At the very least you’re most likely familiar with the rigid idea of abstinence. You’ve heard it before: you shouldn’t do that before marriage, you have to be pure, you can’t do that, you have to do this.

But why? Why is chastity so darn important?

One word: love.

This is the main question Jason and Crystalina Evert deal with in their book How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your Soul. This husband and wife team make a lot of good points about waiting for marriage, treating yourself right and being the woman God wants you to be. This book can be powerful if you let it.

Love is something we often don’t truly understand. But it’s a choice, something we decide to do. Every day we make choices: some are loving and some aren’t. Some show a love of ourselves but a contempt for others. Some show love for others but a contempt for ourselves. True chastity is a way of loving others and loving ourselves.

So, who does chastity love?

1) Ourselves. The truth is that hooking up, shacking up, or simply being nothing but physical are not good for us. As women we want to be shown love. I know this is true of myself beyond a doubt. But we often look for it in the wrong places or are willing to sacrifice anything for it. So, we give men what they want in the hopes they will give us what we want. The truth is though, that many men who get what they want don’t see the reason to give the woman what she wants. After all, if he’s getting “the one thing on his mind” why would he bother caring what we want? Why would he consider marrying us if he’s already getting his physical “needs” met without a commitment? We’re just a tool. And as soon as something better comes along he’ll have no issues with dumping you like a hot potato.

2) Your boyfriend. Yes, not giving somebody everything they may want can actually be very good for them. We need to teach men that they can’t expect to get everything they want. The lesson starts when we say “no”. This not only shows that we respect ourselves and our body but that we respect him. You can protect him from himself by refusing to go there. Don’t tempt him, but rather make him a better person. (By the way, if he refuses to live according to your standards you need to dump him like a hot potato.)

3) Your future husband. Someday, you might very well get married. If you’re actively dating, odds are marriage is something you want. When you find that perfect guy do you want to have to admit to him the mistakes you’ve made? Do you want to be comparing him to your former loves? Save something special for that special someone. Even if you’ve made mistakes in the past you can start over today and give your future husband every day between now and your wedding day.

Being chaste means that you have higher standards, that you respect your worth, that you recognize that your body is not meant for any guy to have and hold but that it and you are meant to give yourself only to the man you marry.

Soulmate is about a lot more than just chastity, however. It’s about respecting yourself as a woman and recognizing your dignity and beauty. It’s about being strong, having high standards, and trusting that God has someone very special in store for you.

One way to live these things out is to set guidelines. Make it clear to you and your boyfriend that there are certain things you just won’t do. Respect him too, and don’t force him to do anything he’s uncomfortable with. Another way you can set guidelines is discussed in the book. Crystalina recommends praying for your future husband, even though you may not have met him yet. She also talks about how she made a list of attributes she wanted her husband to have. A short while later she met Jason who embodied so many of her hopes and dreams for her perfect man.

As soon as I came to that part in the book, I took out a notebook and started to make my own list. For each woman, this list will be slightly different. We are all different and we work and get along well with different kinds of people. Here are just a few things from my list to get you thinking:

6) is a leader
16) he loves kids
29) is stereotypical chivalrous: opens doors etc.

I challenge you to make your own list. Trust that God will lead you to the life you’re meant to have. Trust that you don’t need to give yourself away or degrade your worth to receive love. Trust that chastity is love and that any man who doesn’t recognize that is not worth your love or your time. One chapter of Soulmate is called “Break Up, Even if He Smells Good” let me just echo the advice: if he doesn’t respect you, if he refuses to accept your “no”, if he doesn’t meet up to your standards of what a good husband should be then break up. Now.

It took me longer than I would have like to finish How to Find Your Soulmate but as I turned the last page I wanted more. For me, this was a very personal book. And I know it’s a book I haven’t fully absorbed. I borrowed this book from my friend Laura (she blogs over at My Drop in The Ocean) so I might just have to get my own copy to go through, highlight, and open up whenever I need a dose of encouragement.

Any young woman out there: get this book. I don’t care if you live a chaste life and don’t feel any of this applies to you. This book will remind you why you should be chaste and hopefully renew you for what’s ahead.

If you’d like to get your own copy, and I encourage any young woman out there to do so, you can find it here on Amazon or get it through their website. If you order through the last link you can the book for as low as $2 when you buy in bulk!

Remember, you are worth more. Act like it.
Keep your head high and your standards higher.

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 12)


— 1 —

Father’s Day! To all dads:I hope you know what an impact you can have on your children. Your actions and words, for good or ill, can influence much in your child’s life. Happy Father’s Day to all dads, especially my own.

— 2 —

I found a summer job! This week so much has happened. On Wednesday I went into a cafe to apply for a job. I filled out the application and, since she wasn’t busy, the executive chef talked to me for a bit. She told me to come in Saturday morning. So I did. Part of the time I shadowed and then I waitressed my own tables.

— 3 —

Only, it’s not that simple…(but when is it?) The first day was rough. I was there for over 8 hours and completely lost. But I got through, I guess. Moreover, on Friday, I was contacted about a nannying position. It would pay better, have consistent hours, and be something I could enjoy. I’m praying that I get the job, but also that God’s will be done.

— 4 —

I had a scare with my computer earlier today. I thought I might have downloaded a virus. But my resident IT serviceperson/brother told me it was just a fierce ad pop-up and that there’s nothing to worry about. So…

— 5 —

Civil disobedience would be necessary according to my priest. During his homily at today’s Mass, he spoke of the Fortnight for Freedom (a call from the bishops to pray and fast for religious liberty, true marriage, and other issues) and Obamacare’s HHS Mandate. Starting August 1 almost all health insurance will have to provide for contraception, sterilization, and abortifacients. As he said, as Catholics this is against our conscience. We cannot go along with an unjust law such as this one. Therefore, civil disobedience may not only be morally allowable but morally obligatory.

— 6 —

I’m almost done with How to Find Your Soulmate Without Losing Your SoulHopefully I’ll finish it quick and have a blog post up soon. This will be a hard post to write. Soulmate has been a personal and emotional book for me. Hopefully, though, I can share some of the wisdom I’ve learned from it.

— 7 —

Random Catholic Sightings! Today, I saw 2 separate instances of Catholicism. At the store, I saw a man buying quite a large quantity of food, including almost 100 cans of soda. The list he kept referring to was on a piece of paper, on the corner of which was an image of St. Anthony of Padua holding the Infant Jesus. Then when we were out at dinner, I caught sight of a man’s scapular. It’s just great to see these things and remember that Catholics are around me…even though I’m away from school.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Assessment of 2013 Goals: May. And New June Goals

Here I am again! It’s that time again: time to take a look back on the last month and see what progress (if any) I’ve made on my goals for this year. As always, I’m here to look back, evaluate, keep myself accountable, and spur myself on.

But first…

Life changes. And our goals for life change too. Sometimes you need to re-evaluate.

I’ve noticed several bloggers do monthly goals: picking new things every month and reviewing themselves at the end of the month. I think that format may be something for me to try. It would be a way to keep things fresh, add new goals when I need to, and break down denser goals into more manageable bits.

I did, however, tell myself I would stick to the 13 goals I made at New Year’s, so I have a rule regarding this new goal system format thing.

All of the original 13 goals still stand and will stand unless they are now or in the future become obsolete


So here are the original 13, and the progress I’ve made on them this month.

1) donate blood.  Did this in April! And I recently got my donor card, so I actually know what bloodtype I am.

2) get my license.  Nope. That’s a bit more complicated than I thought it would be. It’s contingent on things that I don’t get to decide. But it should still happen by the end of the summer.

3) write a letter to myself to open in the future. Haven’t done this either. And why not? I really should just do this. This is probably a good time to do it. I’m done with my freshman year of college, I just had a birthday… I should do this.

4) figure out how I can study/travel abroad. I’ve actually been working on this one. But the “how” has turned more to “if”. The cost is particularly not helpful. I’ve made a spreadsheet to compare different abroad programs with what I would pay at BC. There’s one in Northern Ireland that’s looking promising, just not so sure about going it alone.

5) work on learning Spanish (unless I’ve chosen Italian). This depends on where and whether I study abroad. Of course, I could still start on Spanish. But I haven’t.

6) create melted crayon art. Nope. Fall project with my suitmates when we get back to campus??

7) go on a shopping adventure. This month I actually did have a fun shopping trip with a friend. But I also want to do something more, like take my sister into the city for the day, just us girls. But we’ll see.

8) get a summer job. Working on it….

9) take a summer class or 2. I actually decided I didn’t need to take any classes this summer. So this goal is obsolete.

10) read 5 new books. I’ve started one. Look for a review of “How to Find Your Soulmate without Losing Your Soul” by Jason and Crystalina Evert soon. And look at other books I’m hoping to read over on my summer reading list.

11) visit a religious community/ go on a retreat with one.  Nope.

12) write more. I’ve actually been blogging a lot more since being home. As for fiction writing…well, I was having some writer’s block. It’s hard to get back into it and actually, I’m not sure I really want to.

13) be a better person.

a) pray more. For this one, I think it will be a bit of hard work and diligence before I’m in a good habit. I really should put in the effort, especially since I have so much free time right now.

b) be more diligent but don’t take things so seriously. This is one I’ll have to work on for a while, maybe always to maintain the balance. But using my rose-colored glasses as I look at the past, I think maybe I have gotten better at this.

c) laugh more, worry less. I worry. Always.


Now here are my 5 goals for June:

1)Say at least one decade of the rosary every day

2)Finish “How to Find Your Soulmate” and at least one other book–and write reviews for both

3)Make a decision about Spanish next semester

4)Apply to more jobs, and get at least one interview (hopefully)

5)Refresh my math skills (or lack thereof) in prep for my math for teachers class in the Fall

BONUS) Write that letter to my future self

As you might be able to tell, most of these goals are taken from the 13 goals–some are just more manageable pieces of the larger goal.

I think I’ll like this. Instead of the same old 13 big goals I’ve had all year I now have 5 or 6 more manageable goals in a fresh, new format. I’m going to put these on a electronic sticky note on my laptop so they’ll be there all month as a reminder.

We’ll see how I do at the end of the month…