7 Quick Takes (Vol. 18)

— 1 —

Wow that’s right it’s Friday. hehe

— 2 —

I went shopping with an old friend today. We had fun and I found a cute dress.  And I got a surprise at the register–the dress was on sale 🙂 We went to a few different places, including 2 stores that just opened. We also found a nice little juice bar and got smoothies.

— 3 —

My post about charting which you can find here got a number of views this week. I’m glad to see it was popular. It was a post I considered not publishing but, I’m glad I did. Stay tuned for more as I get myself going in the world of charting.  🙂

— 4 —

Summer is almost over. In about 2 1/2 weeks I’ll be heading out to Colorado and from there road trip with my roommate to college in Kansas. Then the true adventure begins. I’ll be taking 18 credit hours, doing my ministry work, hopefully spending time with my friends and suitemates, and hopefully working a part time job a few hours a week. Speaking of work…

— 5 —

I only have one more week of work at my summer waitressing job! It’s been…interesting. There have been bad days, good days, boring days, crazy days. I’ve certainly gotten more comfortable at my job, even to the point of feeling like an old pro (at times). But…I’m going to be quite fine with it being over. Time to look forward to my next job I guess. I’m hoping to have something on campus this semester, possibly at our mailroom.

— 6 —

This week is World Youth Day. AND there’s going to be a flashmob! How awesome is that! It’s in honor of Pope Francis, will be set to a song written for the occasion, and will take place on Sunday.

Find out more here:

See the complete instructions here (though the choreographers are speaking Portuguese, but you can still see what they’re doing obviously):

— 7 —

Well, this is late enough as it is. So…Have a great weekend everyone and here’s a cute picture 🙂

kids holding hands
“Siblings” via morguefile.com

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


7 Quick Takes (Vol. 10)


— 1 —

It’s my 10th quick takes post! This would be a lot more exciting if I hadn’t taken those several weeks off…. Ok, over that.

— 2 —

Last week I mentioned I was going to be in a choir, for my friend’s high school graduation Mass. We had the Mass on Wednesday night and I think it went fairly well. It’s been a year since my own graduation Mass. A whole year. And overall, I’ve loved this year.

— 3 —

This week begins my family’s big re-roofing project…it’s going to be quite a project. I most likely won’t go up on the roof (and that’s fine with me), my dad and brothers will be doing most of the hard work.

— 4 —

A couple days ago I got to babysit. It was great to watch those little ones, play with them–and get paid for it! I would love for that to be my work for the summer, but we’ll see what God has in store…

— 5 —

I’ve also been making bread–yum! Homemade bread is yummy but it’s torturous smelling it while it cooks! We use a bread machine which takes almost all the work out of it. And all that goes into it is what we put in, there’s no need to add preservatives or artificial anything. My mom says it’s cheaper too. I don’t know about that, but I love eating it.

— 6 —

It’s been over 3 weeks since I got home…my summer is almost a quarter gone. It went by fast and I don’t think I’ve done much. It’s time I set myself to it and really got done those things I planned to do while I’m on break.

— 7 —

I miss college, I admit it. The schedule, not sharing my room with three people, being able to make decisions (even little ones) for myself, having stuff to do, having my friends around, being in such a downright Catholic place–it’s great! But I should be thankful that I’m home and with my family and look for the upsides in that. Still, I’ll be glad to get back.

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…

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 9)


— 1 —

I like lilacs. They don’t bloom for long but for the time they do, it’s beautiful. And it smells wonderful. I wish my camera was working so I could show you the lilacs my sister and I picked and put in a vase on our kitchen table. Some of them are wilted already, but some are still fresh.

— 2 —

I’m surprised by how much I like Twitter. I’ve only been using my account for about 10 days, but I’m seeing some benefits. There’s some great Catholic and pro-life people to follow on Twitter. There’s great quotes, news articles, humor. However, I’m not a big fan of how short tweets have to be. That would be my one complaint.

If you’d like to follow me I’m under @rachel_kateri. You can also see my recent tweets in the Twitter widget to the right.

— 3 —

Earlier this week I went shopping with a friend. It’s been on my to do list and it was fun. We stopped at all of a girl’s favorite shops: Ghiradelli’s Chocolate, Bath and Body Works, some clothing stores. I didn’t buy much but it was a good time and I got to catch up with an old friend.

— 4 —

I going to be in a choir. My old homeschooling group is having their graduation Mass this week. Myself and several others will make up the choir for the Mass. I haven’t sung in a choir since my chorale concerts in April and I felt pretty rusty at practice yesterday. But it should be fine as long as I practice.

— 5 —

I’m still looking for a Summer job. Yep…. I’m feeling less and less confident as time goes on, but we’ll see.

— 6 —

I wanted to write this Summer. See, I haven’t really written fiction since I started school. There just hasn’t been much time for it. So I though I’d pick up some of my old pieces again (I usually aim for novel-length). But I’m finding it kind of laborious. Maybe I’ll start something new? Maybe I just need to push through?

— 7 —

Spring/Summer Fever… I’m a planner. I need to know what’s coming up next. I also don’t like sitting around doing nothing for days and days. Don’t get me wrong, rest is nice. But at this point I’ve been home for 2 weeks and sitting around the house has turned from relaxing into tedious. I want to do stuff, but  it would be difficult to start any major projects since I don’t know what the rest of the summer will hold. I could decide to do this or that but I guess I’m afraid it might be interrupted were I to get a job. I like schedules. I like consistency. But I don’t like doing nothing. Maybe I’ll start something, and if it gets interrupted or I have to cut back…oh well then. But I need to do something.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 8)


— 1 —

I forgot to say last week…I had an interesting experience during my layover in Chicago. I got to help a foreign lady use a pay phone. Random, I know. I walked past the gate where my flight would leave a few hours later and continued down the terminal almost aimlessly. Then she pulled me aside and asked for my help. It was interesting, not least because I myself had never used a pay phone. She and I managed to communicate and I managed to understand the sign enough to place the call. Looking back, it was really cool. Not everyday you get to do a random act of kindness at the airport.

— 2 —

Abby and I.  Earlier this week Abby Johnson, a great leader in the pro-life movement, shared this on her Facebook:

Abby Johnson Plane

So while she evangelized this way, I did my more subtle though arguably less impactful assistance. What I did wasn’t much, and it wasn’t the biggest thing I could have done I guess. But I think we all evangelize in different ways. We each have different talents. Abby Johnson has the talent of being a bold, courageous, no-nonsense kind of person.

— 3 —

This week was my birthday. I celebrated by going out with some lovely and hilarious ladies. My mom and godmother took me to Mass (yes we’re just that Catholic), lunch, and shopping at Hobby Lobby and Barnes and Noble. Crafts/decorating and books what could be better?

— 4 —

Today I’ve been working on calculating how much it would be to study abroad. It’s not as much as I thought I calculated earlier in the week…but that’s not including travel in Europe. Also, do I really want to go Italy and compartmentalize myself to only a few days in Ireland? But, as I was reminded this week, I have to be realistic. Money is money. And I can only afford so much. Moreover, do I really want to be by myself in Europe? Probably not for a full semester.

— 5 —

Still in need of a summer job. I honestly haven’t been working on the search this week, but tomorrow I’ll get back into it. We’ll see what comes of it… Prayers please!

— 6 —

The offensiveness of “handicapped” signs. I never would have noticed this before my intro to special education class. But today we were driving down the road and I saw a sign. The top had your typical handicapped symbol:


on a yellow sign and beneath that were the words “deaf child”. Well, here’s the thing….deaf children aren’t in wheelchairs normally, and if they are it’s not because of their deafness. Yet, generally when someone says “handicapped” what do we think? We think of wheelchairs. Why? Many who people who would be considered “handicapped” or who have a disability are not in wheel chairs: the deaf, the blind, those with learning disabilities or autism. Some might say that this symbol is easily recognizable and so when you’re flying down that residential street at 45 mph this let’s you know something’s up. Sure, I grant you. But what does it let you know is up? If you don’t have time to read the words you can only speculate as to whether the child represented is actually in a wheelchair, or if they’re blind, or have autism. In certain situations a general broad brush symbol may be necessary, but is it necessary here? Is this sign helping to perpetuate an inaccurate stereotype?

— 7 —

I’m on Twitter! Follow me to get the latest from The Beginning of Wisdom, as well as cool pro-life articles, and whatever else I decide to tweet. You can see my latest and sign up to follow at the right (and a bit up) —–>

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Assessment of 2013 Goals: April

I realize that I’m about 12 days late in writing this, but during those 12 days I’ve done a lot! So, without further excuses…

This was my last full month of freshman classes but I did accomplish some things.

1) donate blood. I actually did this! It wasn’t too bad. But, just so you, I don’t recommend skipping breakfast the day after you give blood. Just trust me on this. No matter how much homework you have to do, you still need to eat.

8) get a summer job. I applied for a few. Haven’t gotten anything definite yet.

9) take a summer class or 2. Well, I was registered for one, but I then learned that it didn’t satisfy the proper things, blah blah etc…so I dropped it. I was mainly taking it to ensure that i graduated on time and because I thought it would make it easier to fit in studying abroad. As it turns out though, I can finish my major and spend a semester abroad without summer classes.

13) be a better person. I hope I’ve been working on this one…

So this was a short review, but I’ll be back in a couple weeks to talk about studying abroad and learning Spanish.

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 7) Home Sweet Home


— 1 —

It’s been a long couple days. Friday was the Baccalaureate Mass that I helped out with. It was kind of crazy. There were over 1,300 people. I was on my feet for 6 hours. But the ministry team I’m part of also had some good bonding time and we pulled it off as smoothly as we could. Then, yesterday I got to see (via simulcast since not everyone could fit into the gym) a lot of Benedictine’s graduation including Paul Ryan’s commencement speech. We left before it finished, to head out to the airport. 2 planes, a 3 hour layover, and a chicken sandwich later my mom picked me up from the airport and we drove home.

— 2 —

So I’m home. My first year of college is over and done with. I’m a quarter of the way through college. Yikes. (When I get to be half way through I really won’t believe it). Now I’m here with my family and, well, pretty exhausted (see take number 1).

— 3 —

But the summer is about to start.  It will be different being home but hopefully I can get a lot done. I’ll have to look into working. I’m planning on reading and blogging more. I’ll also be preparing for some of the harder classes I’m taking this fall (such as math). And of course, spending lots of time with family and friends.

— 4 —

Goals for this summer… so obviously I have some vague plans and ideas, but let me give you and myself a list of concrete goals this summer, some of which will be taken from my 2013 goals.

  • read 5 books
  • blog often (I’d like to do 2 posts a week including a 7 quick takes, but it will depend on the rest of my schedule…)
  • figure out studying abroad (as much as possible)
  • fun times with my friends
  • quality family time

— 5 —

Speaking of goals…I never wrote my review of 2013 goals for April. I honestly forgot, and then I had a lot to do…but I’ll be writing a quick something on that shortly.

— 6 —

Speaking of Paul Ryan…It’s funny that I was in Kansas when I stood just a few yards from my district’s representative. While many were thrilled to have him speak others claimed his budget didn’t line up with catholic social teaching. He gave a good speech explaining his views on the matter and how certain things are non-negotiable while others require prudential judgment. I won’t comment on his recent announcement regarding gay adoption except to say that I don’t believe that is the best environment for children to live in because God designed families to have a mother and a father and in that situation children thrive.

— 7 —

Happy Mother’s Day! You women do more than many people realize. To all the young moms, older moms, single moms, working moms, stay at home moms, grand moms, those who long to be moms, those who were once moms…thank you. You impact your children in so many ways and so deeply. They are your legacy. And a thank you especially to my mom for all she’s done for me and my siblings as the heart of our family.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

7 Quick Takes (Vol. 5) I’m Back!


— 1 —

I’m back!! The last month or so I’ve neglected these 7 quick takes posts as well as this blog generally speaking. But now I’m back. And as the school year end and summer begins I’ll hopefully have more time to blog away. On to my life.

— 2 —

I gave blood this week! On Thursday my college was hosting a blood drive so I went in and gave blood. It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a while. It wasn’t very hard at all. I did feel some side effects afterwards, but I also skipped breakfast the next day.

— 3 —

 I love my college. This week at Benedictine we saw the biannual Jam for Lamb musical talent show (some acts of which were hilarious) as well as the first annual Color Run and the 30th year of Springfest. A Color Run, if you don’t know (which is ok because I didn’t at first), is a 5k during which people throw colorful powder all over you. A couple of my friends did it and enjoyed it. At Jam for the Lamb we had an awesome performance by the 4 guys who will be joining seminaries this fall. It was their send-off. So proud that my school has *4* future-seminarians.

— 4 —

Finals are coming! *cue scary music*  I actually have my first this Tuesday. It’s a biology lab practical, and well, we’ll see how that goes. After that I’ve got 3 tests, a take home project (in addition to the test for that class), and 3 papers (one of which is in addition to a traditional test). There will be lots of popcorn and chocolate these next 10 days.

— 5 —

Summer is coming! *cue fun music* In two weeks I’ll be home with my family. I’ll hopefully find a job and spend my summer working, hanging out with friends, and doing lots of reading. (I actually have a potential nannying job, so please keep that in your prayers.)

— 6 —

College Ministry. This fall I’ll be working with my college’s ministry team as the editor of the Sunday bulletin. I’m really excited! I’ve been shadowing the person who has it now and getting to know the position. As part of it I also write the petitions and help out at Sunday Mass, as well as schedule people who volunteer for Eucharistic Adoration slots.

— 7 —

Time for the Catholic meme of the day from catholicmemes.com


For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Assessment of 2013 Goals: March

Another month has come and gone and it’s time for me to see how I did regarding my goals for this year. March saw both Spring and Easter breaks, a warming up in the weather, and the beginning of spring stircrazy-ness.

On to the goals. I figure I’ll go through them one by one and see what my thoughts are and/or if I’ve gotten anything done towards the goal.

1) donate blood.

Hasn’t happened. Probably won’t until next semester.

2) get my license.

Hopefully over the summer.

3) write a letter to myself to open in the future.

Haven’t done this yet. Though it would probably take all of half an hour.

4) figure out how I can study/travel abroad.

This is an interesting one. Over spring break I did a 4 year plan (well, 3 actually since that’s all I have left). I thought it would be possible (so long as I just did an elementary ed major and didn’t add special ed). But with my school’s Honors Program that I’m part of I’m not sure how it will work out. A friend also has an aunt in Italy who could possibly hook me up with an family in need of au pair (something to consider).

5) work on learning Spanish (unless I’ve chosen Italian).

I am officially enrolled in Beginning Spanish for the Fall 2013 semester. Also, I might work with the Rosetta Stone Spanish program my family has over the summer.

6) create melted crayon art.

Haven’t done this yet.

7) go on a shopping adventure.

Hm…maybe with my good friend form back home over the summer (again).

8) get a summer job.

Looking at a few options. Any suggestions?

9) take a summer class or 2.

I’m also officially enrolled in World Regional Geography for the Summer 2013 semester-thing.

10) read 5 new books.


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

Haven’t really. I did go to the vocations fair on campus earlier this month though.

12) write more.


13) be a better person.

a) pray more.

no comment.

b) be more diligent but don’t take things so seriously.

Maybe…yeah, maybe making some progress.

c) laugh more, worry less.

I still worry. But maybe a teeny smidgen less, a little, maybe.

Well, there you have it. Looks like I’m going to have a pretty goal-driven summer. The year is a quarter over, but that means there’s still three quarters to go.