Now…where were we?

July 10, 2013 | 30 comments

I just wanted to pop in to mention briefly that OH MY GOSH I SENT THE BOOK OFF TO IGNATIUS ON MONDAY!!!!!!!!!!!

Guess what: getting a book in final form when you have six young children, including a two-month-old baby who doesn’t sleep through the night, is not a particularly easy endeavor. Little life lesson for you there. It was very much in question as to whether I’d be able to hit the deadline — which I’d already pushed back once — and it felt just slightly like a death march there toward the end.

I’m so thrilled to have it done…or, I will be, anyway. Honestly, right now I’m still in a daze, and I think there’s a 50/50 chance that this is all a dream and I’m going to wake up and find out that it’s June 10th and I’m still behind schedule and still have weeks of toil to go. (And you should see Joe. I think it’ll be a few months before he stops twitching any time anyone mentions the book, books in general, publishing, or pretty much anything having to do with the written word.)

Meanwhile, what’s new? Combine my crazy writing work with the fact that I’m not on Facebook and haven’t been checking Twitter, and, basically, there are desert hermits who are more in the swing of things than I am right now. So catch me up: Read any good stuff lately? Any news from the blog world? Anything going on in your life that you’d like to share?

Believe me when I say that I am truly interested in hearing aaalllllllllll about it.


  1. Isabella Rose

    Congratulations! I can see where that is/will be, an incredible relief. I know how stressful writing a lengthy work can be. Nothing exciting to share here, but I hope that you can enjoy the rest of the summer!

  2. Julie

    Congratulations! Wonderful news! Enjoy your newfound “freedom!”

  3. Wanda

    Congratulations ! What an accomplishment!!!!!!!! Did you know that the House passed the abortion bill last night and it now goes to the Senate? You may or may not be aware of the chaos in your city. Wasn’t there yesterday but wanted to be!

  4. Elisa | blissfulE

    Really, truly?? I’m so thrilled for you! That’s definitely the Holy Spirit getting your book off to the publisher despite all obstacles. Yay!!

    I just found out yesterday that someone walked across the Grand Canyon on a tightrope. for highlights.

  5. LuAnne

    Yeah for you – what a huge accomplishment! I can’t imagine writing a book with a newborn (some of us are lucky we can manage a shower when there’s a new baby!..okay, that may just be me…) You are amazing!

  6. Margo

    Congratulations, Jen!!! I seriously cannot fathom how you pulled it off, you are most definitely supermom!!! If you want to have some fun, you should check out Leila’s latest Bubble post that has over 350 comments all about (gay) marriage & children!

    Pope Francis released his first encyclical, mostly written by Benedict, but it’s still a great read if you have time. Oh yeah JPII is about to be a SAINT!!! Other than that, you’re not missing much in the world, except for Abby Johnson being awesome as I’m sure you know as a fellow Texan! God bless you, Jen!

  7. wendy

    Yay! Cannot wait to read the whole thing, as opposed to bits and pieces.
    Congrats! Hard work under the belt, now on to the baby.

    I just picked up Bringing Up Bebe by Pamela Druckerman, an American living in Paris.

    You NEED to read this! At least the first 3 chapters. It is true and it does work! This is how we worked with our second child. The first slept through the night at 2 weeks. She then proceeded to wake at 2am at age 4 months. Not knowing what to do we breast fed and changed our lives for the worst!!! She wound up sleeping with us as I was too tired to put her back to bed. Number 2 got listened to and we all did so much better. I am just sad this was not in print for our first lovely baby. Be prepared to have your lives changed, but…… you HAVE to want it to happen. Blessings!!!

  8. Lisa Schmidt

    Congrats, Jen! Coincidentally, I *just* posted a video interview with Mark Brumley on Lumen Fidei and the last question I ask him is what Ignatius Press future attractions we should be on the lookout for. He has some very complimentary things to say about your book (it’s at the 10:45 mark if you are interested). I am so looking forward to reading it soon. Cheers to you!

    Here’s the post:

  9. Michelle

    Believe me when I say I am truly looking forward to reading your book.

    I’ve read lots of good stuff on the internet lately — mostly to do with HHS Mandates, politics, yada yada yada. 🙂

  10. Rosemary

    You are amazing. I just have one almost-toddler who does sleep through the night and I’ve gotten barely any writing done since before he was born.

    Congrats! Can’t wait until the book comes out!

  11. Becky

    Ok, since you asked…I’m going to take advantage of the moment!

    There is a family that really could use some help. Long story short, the husband of this family is a long time friend of mine. His wife, Sarah has been dealing with an aggressive cancer for 3 years now and really could use some financial help/emotional support and prayers. They have 3 children–one of which a baby was born during Sarah’s chemo treatments. She was urged to abort the baby but chose to keep the baby, despite the criticism from so many. (The baby in the Header is the baby she carried while having cancer.)

    This family is not “religious”. They are Catholic but are struggling. This would be a great way to show that God acts and loves through people. I have tried to help them by spreading the word through my FB page (Roses for Mary) and my Wall and also going to my Catholic Wall. Unfortunately, only two people have helped by donating. I really could use some help spreading the word about Sarah’s story and how she and her family are asking for help! (She even wrote a post about needing help of which no one even responded! I left a comment later as well as the other two people I mentioned.) It’s just very sad to me to see someone struggling and no one reaching out. It’s like ignoring someone who’s drowning.

    Anyway, I’m asking if you could please use your good status with people to help spread the word about Sarah, get people to donate (she has a “Donate” button on her blog.) And if people are not in a position that they can give financially, they could also help by “following” Sarah’s blog (she only has 4 followers), or even leaving a comment of support.

    This is her website, and the page I’m directing you to is a more detailed (but not long!) story of her illness.

    Thanks, Jen! Now aren’t you glad you asked??? 🙂

    • Jessica

      Becky, bless you for wanting to spread the word and help your friends. I just visited Sarah’s blog and wanted to leave a comment, but I do not have any of the “required” accounts (I know, I know – who doesn’t have gmail? This girl!)

      May the Mother of the Lord – the Mother of us all – bring them closer each day to the Son. May Jesus bless them and aid them and may they feel His comfort, His grace and His love.

  12. Amy

    Congratulations! What wonderful news. I hope you get lots of rest and have some down time now.

    My biggest news is that I decided to take RCIA this year and might be coming to North Dakota in October for the conference!

  13. Nichole

    Awesome!! Congrats on being DONE!! Wanna get caught up on some fun blog stuff? Here are my favs from the past week:

    Grace published her “how we met” story and it’s super, of course. Anna wrote about her sister’s wedding and her family is so gorgeous! Dwija posted a 20 week belly pic and I know we’re all over-the-moon happy that baby is growing like a champ.
    I feel like a lot of people took the week of the 4th off and I’m kind of having blog withdrawals.

    Oh, and there’s this one about a downs baby being saved from abortion:

    Welcome back and happy reading!

  14. Tdog

    congrats cannot wait to read it!!

  15. Barbara

    Gracious. We’re into summer, swimming, keeping away from fearsome Mosquitos that bite through clothes!

  16. Bonnie

    So, I was listening to Relevant Radio the other day, and Drew Mariani was talking about the death penalty, and that he doesn’t agree with it because there is always a possibility of conversion and saving of the criminal’s soul, and to illustrate he began to talk about a man, Claude Newman of Mississippi, who was on death row for killing a man who abused his (Claude’s) grandmother. It is an AWESOME and miraculous story of the unchurched Claude putting on a discarded Miraculous Medal and that night having a vision of the Blessed Virgin. The story that follows is unbelievable.

    Well, very intrigued and impressed, I went to the Mystics of The Church web site to read more about Claude. (Everyone should read this story there. I mean it. It’s mind blowing. And while on the page I see a photo of an icon of Claude with the Blessed Mother, done by (drum roll, please) Brother Claude Land, OSB, of Mount Angel Abbey! And I think, wait a minute, isn’t that Jennifer Fulwiler’s cousin? Didn’t she mention that they went on vacation to Mount Angel Abbey and visited with Brother Claude who does the icons???? Yep. Yep. It is! So I reread your posts about visits to the Abbey, which were just as refreshing and fun to read as when I first read them.

    I must say, God sure has a special plan for your family! God bless.

  17. Catholic Mutt

    Congrats on getting it done and sent!

  18. the other Becky

    Well, did you hear that Brandon Vogt was accused of “stealing from the Pope”, and he got upset, and reacted, and a bunch of other bloggers (including Jeff Miller of The Curt Jester, and Simcha Fisher whom you know) reacted both to the original accusation and to his reaction and to each others reactions and all in all it makes an interesting read. I am not including links because I am really no good at all at computer stuff, but if you google “stealing from the Pope” you will get lots of results. In my humble opinion Jeff Miller’s first reaction is the funniest, although of Simcha Fisher (of course) expressed the funny aspect the best.

  19. Diane

    Congratulations and on the book! I will be sure to read it as soon as it comes out. And since you asked about good books…

    Dangers to the Faith: Recognizing Catholicism’s 21st-Century Opponents by Al Kresta.

    “A storm has been brewing in society and its treatment, views, and activities toward the Catholic Faith.

    Some are subtle, others are more brazen — New Age thought, questionable spirituality, “creedless” Christianity, relativism, scientific skepticism, the triumph of technology, and even the self-styled spirituality of Oprah Winfrey.

    All these masquerade as “truth,” making it tough for the average Catholic to know how to resist, let alone respond.

    No one is more qualified to pull back the curtain on the challenges the Catholic Church faces today than Al Kresta, popular Catholic author, speaker, and radio show host. A revert to Catholicism, Kresta is well known for his rigorous examination of topics in art, religion, academia, and business.”

    I downloaded this book onto my Kindle 2 days ago and I haven’t been able to put it down. That is when the chaos of my life calms down enough for me to pick it up. lol. I highly recommend this book for its wealth of usable quotes alone.

  20. Emily B

    I can’t wait to read it!
    Recently I picked up Forming Intentional Disciples by Sherry Weddell and am loving it.

  21. Kristen Nelson

    Congratulations! I look forward to reading your book. Will it make me laugh and reflect as much as your blog does?

    I’m not sure if you are interested in art, but I am launching a new blog called Art History Mom. It’s a place where parents and kids come together to view and discuss great works of art. I hope it will be a good resource for homeschool moms too. The WHY section of the site describes my mission:

    I will be debuting my first post later this month and am very excited.

    I will pray that your book is a huge success!

  22. Roberto Bacalski

    I’m a new reader but I love your blog and wish you well with the new book. If you’re truly interested in news, I’d like to share that after an informational meeting at Catholic Charities, my wife and I decided to be adoptive parents. Pray for us!

  23. Jill VanTrease

    I just BARELY survived year one of baby #6 – I’m blaming baby #5 – and cannot imagine having thrown in a book deadline into that hot mess. Hats off to you! You deserve a wild night out. Or wild-ish, if you’re nursing. 😉 Congratulations.

  24. Sarah Smith Bartel

    You are a rockstar. That is AWESOME! I am so excited to read your book! I’ve been praying prayers of thanksgiving today for your finishing that. When I finished my dissertation I felt like a triumphant, Rocky-style theme song should sort of follow me around everywhere, but really, I just got to do laundry and clean the kitchen and feed my children and stuff without knowing that I was going to be up a few extra hours that night. : ) But I think you SHOULD get yourself a theme song. What would you pick? Finishing a huge huge project like that while mothering young children is monumental! I hope you get to rest a bit now. My parish priest here in Sumner, WA, learned icon writing from Br. Claude at Mount Angel! How cool that he’s your cousin!

  25. Jessica

    Jen, I’m just thrilled for you (the book part, not the lack of sleep part.)

    What is new in my life? Well, praise be to the Lord, a good friend of mine is now saying she is a “Christian and a former atheist.” I tell you, the Lord worked an honest-to-goodness miracle in her heart. The change is astounding and I’m standing in awe at what He has done. Although my friend has been giving me “credit” for my example, I will tell you that I have done nothing – it is all the Holy Spirit.

    I really and truly encourage everyone and anyone reading this to speak the Truth in love, and humbly give witness to your loved ones as much as you can. People DO listen and people DO see! All glory and honor to Him!

    Jen, thank you so much for your beautiful website, as always.

  26. monica

    Hi Jen,

    I am so happy that you finished your book and cannot wait to read it!!!! Congrats!!!! Not sure you would be interested in WWII history, I love it. I am currently reading “AND IF I PERISH”. It is a book about Nurses who took care of the wounded GI’s a few miles from the front lines, what they went through and adapted to accomplish their mission. God Bless you, Joe and the kids.

  27. Vicki

    Grats, Jen. I am so looking forward to reading it. So… what are your plans for you next book? (Just kidding, Jen; just kidding heheh.)

  28. Kristin

    Can’t wait to buy the book! Hope you have some speaking engagements lined up in the Austin area too!

  29. Jenna@CallHerHappy

    Congrats, Jen! So happy for you and for all of us who are even closer to reading it 🙂

    I had a pretty good blogging week: Meg from Held by His Pierced Hands came to stay with us for the weekend. I got to grab some lunch with Dwija, and I had a pretty good response on a post I wrote about Fair Trade Chocolate & Pro-Life on

    Oh, and my site is back up and running. New host now. Shaking my fists at Bluehost. Gr.

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