We are staring down a busy weekend at Das Schmidt Haus.First up is another deacon formation weekend at Conception Seminary that may shape up to be a defining moment for Joelâ€™s continued diaconate discernment. Last month he was given a large assignment: to develop a ministry for a group of people in need. After much prayer, research, and conversation over the last month, Joel and I have sketched out initial ideas for a new ministry and will present the plan this weekend. Out of respect to the process, I canâ€™t get into the details yet, but will say I am encouraged with the feedback weâ€™ve received so far. Hopefully we can share details soon.
After the diaconate commitments finish on Sunday morning, I then switch gears and head to a Pure Fashion father/daughter event on Sunday afternoon. Pure Fashion? It’s a faith-based ministry that works with teen girls to help them live, act, and dress with dignity, living out the virtues of modesty and purity. (Oh, how I could have used it 20 years ago!) I am honored they asked me to sing/provide music and share some of my faith-journey once againâ€”I was even able to find some new music for the occasion that I pray goes over well. Looking forward to a nice time with the teens and their fathers!
I recently read a terrific article in the National Catholic Register about former Americaâ€™s Next Top Model contestant Leah Darrowwho quit her modeling career in order to pursue a fulltime speaking career focused on modesty, chastity, and women in the Church. I love this story and want to see more conversions like hers! Darrow is also helping to organize the first Pure Fashion team in the St. Louis area where she now lives. Iâ€™m no Leah Darrow, but looks like all the cool kids are getting involved with Pure Fashion, folks!
The keys to a happy marriage are when moms cook and dads play? Well, thatâ€™s what theÂ research completed by the Ohio State University suggestsâ€”that couples where the father participates equally in traditional caregiving tasks tend to fight more than couples where the mother does a bigger share.
While I havenâ€™t taken the time to fully analyze the study, on the surface, it seems similar dynamics have played out in our family. I recently hung up my city manager business suits and skirts for mommy blue jeans and fitted t-shirts (will be writing about that very soon!). I feel more like a woman today than ever before in our six years of marriage, and I know it has a lot to do with the fact I’m now fulfilling more of the “traditional” roles in our familyâ€”roles that are allowing me to be the â€œheartâ€ of our family. I am interested to hear your experiences with how shared-parenting works in your home.
Now that Iâ€™m in my home more, Iâ€™m learning about many tips and tricks for keeping it clean, organized, and well-run in the most frugal way.Living that out is easier said than done, of course. A recent tip I stumbled upon is the many household uses for white distilled vinegar. For example, did you know an open dish of vinegar can help remove paint smells from a room? Got hiccups . . . drink a teaspoon of the magic potion to get rid of them. Don’t like using chemicals on your lawn? Try pouring full-strength vinegar on weeds to kill them. And here’s one to experiment with: coat your car windows with a solution of 3 parts vinegar to 1 part water to keep them frost-free overnight in winter. Who knew? Not me! These and more tips available at www.vinegartips.com.
And maybe the best news of the week . . . a heat wave is coming!Ya-hoo! It has been downright cold here, like many other places across the States, with temps struggling to climb even above zero. As evidenced by the picture here, looks like we may reach 50+ degrees next week! Being stuck indoors for the better part of the last two weeks is making me a little stir-crazy, and Iâ€™m craving to breathe in fresh, crisp air. I hope the meteorologists are correct; Iâ€™m looking forward to a nice long walk with Lucy and our fat black lab Sophie!
Finally, I discovered that my doctor reads our blog. Sheâ€™s a faithful Catholic so I suppose it makes sense she might have stumbled upon â€œThe Practicing Catholic.â€ But I didn’t expect her to say, â€œI read your blog!â€ when she entered the exam room earlier this week. Doc, if youâ€™re reading this, thanks for stopping by again; more importantly, Iâ€™m grateful for the medical care and advice you provide. The world needs more practitioners like you!
Here’s to a great weekend, everyone! Head over to ConversionDiary.com to read more Quick Takes.