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Here’s this week’s must-reads before we celebrate Christmas! 

  1. In this busy season, this feels appropriate… Saying, “No” to something can make us feel like we’re letting someone down, or like we’re disappointing them, or… like we’re not doing enough/being enough. But it’s so necessary — both to take care of ourselves, and also to allow us to live our lives the way we intend to.

We can’t do 100% of every single thing that comes our way. Not everything is something we’re even called to do. We get to discern what it is we commit ourselves to, and sometimes, “No” is the right answer. Maybe that’s because we need to take care of ourselves at that time. Or maybe it’s because we have another commitment, and we can’t split our focus. Maybe it’s because we have someone else counting on us… Either way, “No” is a totally appropriate response at times, and I hope you’re able to freely say, “No” when you need to this week and this holiday season.

It can be a good thing to say, “No” Because it gives you the opportunity to say, “Yes” to something else.

2. This Christmas poem by St. John of the Cross will enlighten the dark night of your soul 

3. “3 Ways to Distinguish Between God’s Voice and Satan’s Voice”

4. A hack for hiding Christmas presents

5.  “As I meditate on the mysteries of the most holy rosary during my run, I am able to unite my physical sufferings and triumphs with those of Jesus.  The physical exertion is difficult – this is not an easy workout – but I have time every day that is dedicated not only to my own self-improvement but also to worshipping my God in a most intimate and physical way.

Yes, running used to be a special kind of hell.  But now it’s a glimpse of heaven, and I wouldn’t change a thing.” — Ginny, Not So Formulaic

6. A Spiritual Gifts Inventory (Questionnaire) to help you discern your spiritual gifts or charisms.

7.  An Empty Manger: Resources for Facing Fertility Challenges this Christmas

8. “The Gingerbread Cookie Recipe You Need toBe Using”

9. What women facing an unplanned pregnancy need to hear

10. Where I saw God last week…

11. My favorite movies to watch around this time of the year…

+ The Family Man 

+ Dan in Real Life

+ Serendipity

+ While You Were Sleeping

+ How the Grinch Stole Christmas

+ The Santa Clause

+ Elf

+ Home Alone

+ Christmas with the Kranks

+ It’s a Wonderful Life

+ The Holiday

+ Three Days