Forgot to Set the Timer
A little over nine (9) years ago I fell asleep while watching EWTN and I forgot to set the TV timer to go to sleep. In the middle of the night or early morning – I remember it as 3AM – Stacey wakes me up. At first I think she is going to gripe at me for forgetting to set the timer. Instead, she had awakened to the image of Our Lady of Angels’ Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament in Alabama. EWTN was advertising pilgrimages.

I Want to See the Nuns
Stacey woke me up and said, “I want to go see the nuns.” Stacey had never seen nuns in person. I vaguely remember mumbling, “OK.” What man is going to deny his wife an opportunity to go on pilgrimage and to see nuns?

3 EWTN Visits
We wound up taking the tour of the EWTN headquarters and the pilgrimage to the Shrine. We’ve been back a second time for the 25th Anniversary of EWTN and we attended one of the road shows EWTN did across the US. Each visit was special in its own way.

Grown Closer
EWTN television, radio and its website have played a large role in our spiritual formation and helping us grow closer to our Lord, His Church and each other.

Don Gonzalez currently resides in Carrollton, TX and is working on a Masters in Theological Studies at Ave Maria University. You can find his writing at Joe Catholic or Facebook.

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We completed the first travel day stopping in Casa Blanca, NM. Stopped at the Dancing Eagle RV Park and Casino.

Beautiful mountains on the horizon and an amazing diner with soda fountain.

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I am so blessed to have this opportunity. And the best part, the cheesy jokes have been held at bay.

RV is loaded and we are getting ready to settle into bed. Vacation-first 24 hours has begun. Not real psyched about the 100 degrees in Texas, knowing Nevada will be just as brutal. But it’s a dry heat, right?

No biggie, in two days we will be in a hotel with a nice swimming pool. Air conditioning in the desert is just as good as it is here. Tomorrow I will have many details to share, but for now, I’m just tired.

Good night blogosphere.

Tomorrow I embark on a journey. I pick up my mother and we go to my aunt’s house for a 6 a.m. departure to Nevada. There is nothing like a good old fashioned family reunion. However, 20 hours in an RV with family, including my never boring uncle with his myriad of bad jokes frightens me. I am someone who prefers to fly. But how bad can it really be? I won’t be driving. I will have my trusty iPad, my Kindle, and my iPhone.

Hey, if nothing else, I’ll get some good naps in. Seriously though, I am looking forward to this journey. You go through life doing your own thing and suddenly you are 40 something wondering where it all went. I will have the opportunity to spend more than a week with my mother, aunt and cousin. I am blessed to have this opportunity.

Prayers for our safe journey is always appreciated. I will be checking in from the road and hopefully will get some amazing pictures to share too.

Sleep.  What do you do to assist in going to sleep?  I know there are a myriad of medications and herbals that assist many people with getting to sleep.  I admit I have to have a little assistance as well.  It seems, as a woman gets older she has more difficulty getting to sleep.  Those crazy hormones misbehaving again. 

Now, on the weekends I totally enjoy taking a nap.  Sometimes I drift off nicely; sometimes I need a little assistance.  Since taking a sleep aid during the day would be irresponsible, I simply have iTunes give me the nudge.  Not music, but Friends.  I have seen all of the episodes so many times it is like a bedtime story your mother tells you every night.

Nighttime can be a little trickier. For that I have my DVR.  Now for my confession…I don’t watch my trusted Friends for sleep at night.  I have a much more macabre routine.  Movies I have seen so many times I drift right off to sleep.  It all started with Scream; slowly I added Scream 2 and 3 until finally Scream 4 became part of my nighttime routine.  Don gets a little tired of these night after night, so I mix it up a little.  Zombieland, the absolute greatness of Zombieland, is my pinch hitter.  I recently brought up Day After Tomorrow from the minors, but don’t add it to the rotation very often.  Sorry, I have baseball fever right now.

So, that’s my little sleep ritual, what’s yours?

I could build entire posts on the following pet peeves of mine.  However, I will simply address the following.

Bikers:  If you want us to be careful around you and look twice before changing lanes, then stop driving in between two cars just because you can.

Cyclists:  If you drive on the street, you must adhere to ALL traffic laws, not just the ones that are convenient because you think you are special.

College Students:  No, you don’t deserve to make $100k at your first job.

Job Seekers:  Don’t send out resumes with typos in them.  Read your product and make sure you are putting your best out there.

Millennials:  Don’t ask the person you just interviewed with to be your Facebook friend.  Don’t text your thank you note – it’s unprofessional.

Whew, I feel better now.  I realize these are addressed to those who will never see this, but sometimes you just have to get the words out there for your own sanity.

Tobit, Chapter 8, 4-7

When Sarah’s parents left the bedroom and closed the door behind them, Tobiah rose from bed and said to his wife, “My sister, come, let us pray and beg our Lord to grant us mercy and protection.”  She got up, and they started to pray and beg that they might be protected. He began with these words:  “Blessed are you, O God of our ancestors; Let the heavens and all your creation bless you forever.  You made Adam, and you made his wife Eve to be his helper and support;and from these two the human race has come.You said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alonelet us make him a helper like himself.’

You said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone; let us make him a helper like himself.’ Now, not with lust, but with fidelity I take this kinswoman as my wife.  Send down your mercy on me and on her, and grant that we may grow old together.”

On the day that Don and I were acknowledged as sponsor couples for marriage preparation, how awesome is this scripture.  Imagine how much Tobias must have loved Sarah to ask her to pray with him prior to their first night together.  As Father Peyton exclaimed, “The family that prays together, stays together”.  We are overjoyed that we will be able to share with other couples the joys of praying out loud together.  Marriage is a covenant that remains until death.  Love is something you must choose to do daily.  We fight, we go to bed mad.  But every morning I wake up and choose to love Don.  This is what I will choose to do everyday I breathe.