Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real

Lucy Rosary Close-Up

Rainn Wilson, the actor who plays Dwight Schrute on the NBC sitcom The Office, recently presented at the 2012 South By Southwest Interactive in Austin, TX. He surprised many in the audience when his talk took a spiritual turn. He said, "I believe the Internet is the future of spirituality. It's a spiritual act to share a beautiful photo on Instagram. It's a spiritual act to sell something beautiful you've crafted on Etsy." I immediately thought about the rosaries handmade by Melanie (aka The … [Read more...]

In case you missed it, the Pope’s in Cuba. So’s my Bishop.

Bishop Richard E. Pates of Des Moines

Last Saturday I had the privilege of witnessing nine men who are journeying through the permanent diaconate program in the Diocese of Des Moines be formally installed as lectors by Bishop Pates. The Rite of Lector is an important step for these men as they progress toward ordination in two years. (My husband, Joel, is one of the nine, and I will post more on the Rite later in the week.) During the Mass, Bishop Pates looked forward to visiting Cuba with Pope Benedict XVI. As Chairman of the … [Read more...]

Celebrating the Annunciation — Some Practical Ideas

Annunciation by Fra Angelico, 1434

Today is the Feast of the Annunciation of the Lord, an occasion to honor “Mary’s yes” and celebrate Christ’s incarnation. The Church typically celebrates this feast on March 25, but given it fell on a Sunday this year, the Annunciation was transferred to Monday. Last year the feast fell on a Friday during Lent so the requirement to abstain from meat was waived. That resulted in much chatter about whether people would or would not be enjoying a nice, big steak (read Turning Mary’s “Yes” Into a … [Read more...]

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real

Lucy & Jude Schmidt - The Practicing Catholic kiddos

This is the first time I'm linking up with Like Mother, Like Daughter and their {pretty, happy, funny, real} series. If you are dropping by our site for the first time by way of that blog, welcome! Thanks for visiting. You can learn more about us here, but please know much has changed in our life since that was first written (my to-do list just got a little longer). Here's a little taste of what's been happening the past week at Das Schmidt Haus. {pretty} Pretty daughter (Lucy --- 3 1/2 … [Read more...]

Reconsidering the Seamless Garment

You Look Fine

Well-intentioned axiom has out-lived its usefulness, should be retired. We’ve all been there. You’re way behind on laundry so you dig deep into your closet, rummaging through clothing you haven’t worn in years. Amid all the outmoded items you find what appears to be a gem, something you used to wear all the time. Okay, it is a bit outdated. “But that just makes it funky, retro hip,” you say to yourself. As you put it on, it feels kind of awkward, but you tell yourself that's precisely how … [Read more...]

After Miscarriage

after miscarriage

People don’t often talk about miscarriage. When experiencing one, women and men often don’t know who to connect with, where to turn for help; the resources that are available remain unknown. Our regular readers know Joel and I have experienced two miscarriages. After both, our experience in receiving medical care and spiritual counsel was less than ideal, leaving us with many questions and unfortunately some regrets about how we journeyed through the process. Joel is now in deacon formation … [Read more...]

Sandwiching an Extra Chromosome


During my undergraduate studies in Family & Consumer Sciences, I developed a series of lesson plans for an education course I took. I created a unit on family communication patterns, and one of the activities I incorporated was called the "No Sandwich.”  The basic premise of the No Sandwich is this: to make a negative response easier for the receiver to swallow, you sandwich the bad news between two pieces of good news. During the last 48 hours, I have read three separate news items with … [Read more...]

7 Quick Takes: Here Comes the Behold Conference


The 2012 Behold Conference is a-l-m-o-s-t here! It is going to be a special event for the 500+ women attending with talks by Kate Wicker, the Sisters of Life, and Ginny Baldridge; music by Curb Records Recording Artist, Marie Miller; Mass; Adoration; and Confession. Bonus: there is a "Meet the Bloggers" segment this year, and I am honored to be participating. The other invited bloggers are women I respect and admire, and I have been pinching myself for several days in anticipation of friendships … [Read more...]

Catholic Church in the Crosshairs

Image by Lawrence OP, used under Flickr Creative Commons License

Obama administration empowers dissident Catholics to represent the Church, tries to shift conversation from religious freedom to contraception. “Click, click.” Did you hear that? It’s the sound of the Obama administration taking aim at the Catholic Church. I’m sure there are some who disagree with me, who want me to just relax and stop with the conspiracy theory nonsense. I won’t. According to Fr. Jesus Urteaga, “If we love truth, we must learn to defend it against all attack.” Make … [Read more...]

President Obama: Let Us Be Catholic

"With all the problems in this world, with the economy, with terrorism, with our country being sold to China, with Iran possibly becoming a nuclear power, with all these things, why is [the Obama administration] so obsessed on reproductive services? When did reproductive services become the national cry of our nation? When did it become more important than the Bill of Rights, more important than the Constitution? We [the Catholic Church] are the one voice that speaks out clearly to this … [Read more...]