New Feature: Two for Others Tuesday

I can’t believe it was two weeks ago already that I was at the Catholic Marketing Network Conference in Arlington, TX.  It was a whirlwind week of ooh-ahhing over all the goodies at the exhibitors’ booths, learning more about the writing and blogging crafts at the attached Catholic Writers Conference and Catholic New Media Conference, and then there was the networking.  This introvert here wishes she could make “networking” a four-letter word.  However, at CMN, it wasn’t so bad.  First of all, we all shared the whole Catholic thing, so that broke the ice.

Secondly… well, time for a confession.  I admit that, the night before I left, I was sobbing, yes, sobbing, over the fact that I would be stuck with strangers who might not like me.  You can take the girl out of junior high, but you can’t take the junior high out of the girl.  However, remember how I just mentioned “the whole Catholic thing”?  Before falling asleep that last night at home, I publicly (to my husband, anyway) resolved to worry more about others than I worried about myself.  I would ask more questions than I answered.  I would help others more than I waited around, looking for someone to help me.  And I would pray.  A lot.

That resolution made a huge difference.

Upon coming home, I made a resolution to be more mindful and less slapdash about my blogging, which includes reaching out to others more on their blogs, not to debate (debating, as we’ve already discussed, is not my strong point), but to build up.  One joint Catholic blogger effort is “7 Quick Take Fridays,” started by Jennifer Fulwiler at conversiondiary.  All the cool Catholic bloggers are doing it.  As usual, my position doesn’t allow me to play with the other cool people.  Fridays are both my big cooking day (researching, taking notes, finding ingredients, taking dreadful pictures that include the shadow of my iphone) and either Little Flowers Girls Club day or the day we join with our homeschooling field trip club in some wacky, highly educational adventure.

This morning, as I was praying over my blog (how nerdy) and going over our Tuesday schedule (we do community service in a local city every Tuesday), my pre-conference networking resolution and my post-conference blogging resolution collided in my brain.  It was a pretty collision.  Very sparkly.  When the dust settled, God handed me Two for Others Tuesday.  It’s not quite off-topic, as it will be something Catholic; but Two for Others Tuesday is when I will either share a Catholic blog I like or review one of the gazillion books or products I brought home from CMN.

Without further ado, I bring you…

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One:  Allow me to wax enthusiastic about Margaret Rose Realy’s blog, Morning Rose Prayer Gardens.  I feel hypocritical writing about gardening, because I am the most neglectful gardener in the world:  I hate bugs, I have had back and other joint problems since I was 15, and I generally can’t keep something alive unless it yells at me to do so.  However, Margaret’s blog brings gardening into the heart of even the least green of thumbs.  Her spiritual insights into the practice of gardening are poetic without being too lofty.  Go read her stuff.  When you’re done that, order her first book, A Garden of Visible Prayer.  I had intended to start reading it when Oldest Kid announced to me, “But I’m already on Chapter 3!”  Some Tuesday in the future, I will give both her and my reviews of said book.

Two:  At CMN, one of the wonderful volunteers I met was Laura B. Nelson, who blogs at greenforgod.blogspot.com.  She is a rockin’ lady both in person and in writing.  I was personally drawn to her mission to “discuss faith and the environment” from a distinctly Catholic perspective.  I think she and I are blogging two sides of the same… well, not coin, because there are more than two sides to sharing ideas about Catholic life without going into an apologetics tirade.  How about we’re two sides on the same gorgeous jewel?  Yes.  Yes, I like that.

Anyway, there’s one step to blogging more mindfully as my primary vocation allows.  Next step:  prettying up the place.  Sheesh.  It’s about as pretty as a gulag around here.
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About Erin McCole Cupp
Erin McCole Cupp is a wife, mother, and lay Dominican who lives with her family of vertebrates somewhere out in the middle of Nowhere, Pennsylvania. Her short writing has appeared in Canticle Magazine, The Catholic Standard and Times, Parents, The Philadelphia City Paper, The White Shoe Irregular, Outer Darkness Magazine, and the newsletter of her children’s playgroup. She is a contributor to CatholicMom.com and has been a guest blogger for the Catholic Writers Guild. Her other professional experiences include acting, costuming, youth ministry, international scholar advising, and waiting tables. When Erin is not writing, cooking or parenting, she can be found reading, singing a bit too loudly, sewing for people she loves, gardening in spite of herself, or dragging loved ones to visitors centers at tourist spots around the country. Find out more about her novels and other projects at erinmccolecupp.com .

4 Responses to New Feature: Two for Others Tuesday

  1. I pray over my blog, too. Nerdy? Perhaps. Necessary? I think so since other people are reading it and I feel it should be inspired by the Holy Spirit.

  2. Laura says:

    What a great way to put some of what you learned at CWG into action. You’ve inspired me to do something similar. Tuesday isn’t good for me. How about Ministry Monday?

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