7 quick takes

7 Quick Takes: books, tv shows, in-between-sizes and political chaos

Linking up with K Manto for some quick takes, because formatted blogging can be fun.


After this week, I am done with social media. Just done. I’m still going to share new blog posts to FB/Twitter via Hootsuite or some similar platform, but man, the time suck and the negativity and just how vapid it makes me to spend so much time in the echo chamber. . .Things have got to change. I’ve quit Facebook before and I can quit it again. But it sure is the Hotel California of social for me.  So if you don’t see your comments answered there, forgive a tired mom, but there’s not enough of me to go around. And if I have to choose between managing existing content and creating it fresh, I’m going to choose creating every time.


This seems like the best TV season in a loooong time (says the woman who doesn’t actually have a TV set up in her house). We’ve been enjoying “This is Us” (well, one of us has, anyway), the new seasons of “Madam Secretary” and “Poldark,” and I’m pumped for the Crown to start on Netflix pretty soon. And then in January, “Victoria” on PBS. After years of wandering in the wilderness of having only Downton Abbey to look forward to, it’s a nice change of pace. Especially since Peyton Manning took all my enthusiasm for football season with him when he retired last year.


Books. This week I’m starting: “Deep Work” and “Gifts from the Sea” (all my library holds always populate my Kindle simultaneously, it seems) and I’m about 1/3 into my second reading of “I believe in love,” the excellent, life-changing written retreat based on the spirituality of St. Therese. It is possibly one of the best spiritual books in print. Get yo self a copy.


Still chugging along with the Catholic Mindfulness course. It’s really changing my hair trigger response to stress from immediate ignition to “huh, that feels ____, I wonder how I can respond to it.” In sum? It’s giving me pause to act like a grown up. I love it.


I am soooo ready for this election to be over, as I presume the rest of America and possibly most of our neighbors are. Proposition 106, a sneakily-worded measure to legalize physician assisted suicide in our beautiful state is expected to pass by a wide margin, which just makes me so sad.

Dave and I were talking about it this morning and how powerful language is, and if it were worded more honestly and more explicitly, would so many people be checking “yes?” Because “medical aid in dying” is a much more pleasant euphemism for “your doctor writing a prescription for 100 barbiturates that you will have to take home, break open, mix into an apple juice sludge and use to commit suicide in the comfort of your own home.” What a time we live in. And what an impoverished understanding we have of suffering, dignity, and the meaning of human existence. JPII, we desperately need you.


I’m sitting at about a 19 pound weight loss from a couple months of Trim Healthy Mama plus avoiding high histamine foods and gluten. Because your mid thirties turns out to be all about food sensitivities and crow’s feet. Awesome. But don’t get me wrong, being almost 20 pounds down from a post 4th pregnancy plateau is a welcome change.

There’s only one little problem, and it’s my sad, sagging wardrobe. I’ve been able to wear a couple things that haven’t fit since we lived in Rome (yay!) but a lot of clothes in that size and from that time period already got purged because they were either threadbare or I gave up that I would ever fit in them again. Joke’s on me, I guess, because I am spending my time these days either in baggy jeans or workout clothes or the 3 outfits that do look like they belong on this body. It’s a good problem to have, but it’s also an expensive problem to have, and I’m not quite ready to bite the bullet and invest in this particular size. Happily, capsule wardrobe is still thing, yes?


Yesterday, I got my first Christmas card in the mail. On November 3rd.

I’ll just let that sink in.

Every year I toy with the idea of making an Excel spreadsheet of addresses, and every year I guess I must decide in some haze of holiday confusion and chaos  that “surely this won’t be a thing again 12 months from now” and fail to do so.  So if you’re my friend and think you’d like a Christmas card this year featuring me in one of my 2 outfits, maybe email me your address?

Happy weekend.



  • Maria

    You know what I did with facebook to avoid the time waste and the annoyingness? I hid all notifications. I have friends, but I’ve forbidden their notifications from being updated. Also I block everything on my own page, so there’s nothing to notify me there. Sort of a gutted version of fb, that allows me access to the couple groups whose gone base, I suppose, is there for lack of a better way to reach everyone effectively/quickly (LMLD pocket page, for example). Anyway, when there isn’t anything exiting going on, it’s way easier to ignore it, but you still get the connection there if you need it.

    Of course, quitting altogether is awesome and I’ve also done that once in the past, so props to you! Just thought I’d offer this as well, as it took an embarrassingly long time to occur to me, maybe others are as slow as I am 😛

    And congratulations on the weight loss, that’s awesome! Clothes are just clothes, three outfits is totally enough ;]

    • Jenny Uebbing

      That is smart! I’m pretty undisciplined but maybe good for a more virtuous woman than I. Maybe the idea of keeping the messenger app but never visiting the site itself? I don’t know, I’m just really feeling called to strip down to the bare necessities more and more.

      I guess 3 is enough, that’s about what my boys all rotate through, haha. Should donate everything else and save myself the laundry drama!

  • Micaela

    I’m pretty much off Facebook right now too. I am re-reading 33 Days to Merciful Love and am using that time to be more prayerful. What I have found to be really helpful are the apps for Facebook messenger and groups. That way I’m not totally disconnected, but I’m not wasting time scrolling or getting angry with friends who post ridiculous stuff.

    I’m down close to 30 and am having the same clothing crisis. I need to shop but am still hopin to lose another 10 lbs so I’m waiting a bit. Thank goodness for one size LuLaRoe leggings.

    This Is Us = Amazing. They aren’t doing the trite “adoption is such an easy beautiful choice” and I’m so glad they have addressed the loss of the grid baby FINALLY. That was bugging me. I’m a couple episodes behind, though.

    Going to check out the Mindfulness course.

  • Kristen

    I hear you on the Facebook thing. I quit it at the beginning of the year did not miss it once. Recently, I got back on only to get more info about the CWBN Midwest and I’m ready to get off again. We watch all the same shows and I actually look forward to TV now but sadly we missed all of the current season of Poldark so we will have to wait until it’s on Amazon. Congrats on your weight loss!

  • Lynette

    Do you mean “This is Us”? If so, I am a fan as well, although I’m a little torn on the adoption story line. But the show is definitely a nice change of pace from all the smut out there!

    • Jenny Uebbing

      hahaha yes, that’s embarrassing. And I really like it! I’m a little afraid they’re going to pull the second/third season switch on us and start doing crazy stuff ala Parenthood, but I’m hoping it just stays fresh and raw and refreshing, the way it has been so far. Though I guess the sister’s story line is a bit on the depressing side.

  • Ashley Anderson

    I was without Facebook for a GOOD stretch of time earlier this year. About 3 months or so. And then I got back on. Now I’m rethinking some sort of break again. Once you’ve really broken from it for a good stretch, you can’t un-see how generally unhelpful that space is in the sense of focusing on our own lives and staying present with our peoples that need and love us most.

  • Dorothy

    Yes it is such a good tv season! I’m really looking forward to the Crown. Also, love love love Poldark! I’m pretty sure he’s going to hit a bad spot soon though, I just hope he redeems himself by the end of the season!

    Also, I LOVE I Believe in Love! I read it freshman year or college, and it had such a profound impact on me. I’m currently re-reading Story of a Soul, maybe I’ll re-read that one soon.

  • Susie

    #1–Good for you, Jenny! The negativity of social media is exhausting and it pulls us away from the needs of those around us. I love your reflections in an earlier post about talking to your neighbor, a person you didn’t know very well. And your thoughts about interacting with her face to face as I believe this authentic human interaction to be dire.

    #5–Right there with you. Just received a link from the American Family Association. Even though the speaker is not Catholic, he does a good job of speaking about the election from a Christian perspective. Perhaps some of your readers may be interested. https://youtu.be/cwTAQpYhkug

    God Bless! 🙂

  • Kirby

    So excited for The Crown! Finally some Matt Smith on TV since Doctor Who!

    I had a facebook friend ask what everyone was doing on election night. I wanted to post about how it’s my first night without rehearsal, class, events, or visitors and I’m planning on doing nothing… lovingly of course…..I will vote. I will do my civic duty, but I’m not sure I can stand the stress of watching the shoe drop. I don’t know how my politco friends do it!

  • jeanette

    #1 on FB: Congratulations on removing yourself from FB. It may have a value for some situations (like organizations), but it is like a social trap that is not always the best way to keep in touch with people. I’ve never been a FB user, but people close to me are. One of my peeves about FB is that it almost FORCES people to stay in the loop or be cut out of the social circle. I’m not talking about the 5,000 “friends” that you don’t particularly know well; I’m talking about close family members and friends. It is a relationship failure to only share about one’s life simply because one is on FB. 5,000 “friends” who don’t really know or care about you certainly don’t need to be the first to learn about the most important aspects of one’s life. If someone is supposedly close to you, you are not off the hook simply because you posted it on FB and they didn’t see it because they don’t participate. It is not a purposeful exclusion, it is rather a failure to put time into a relationship. The amount of time invested is not very fruitful if it doesn’t nurture the important relationships.

    #2 on good books: Yes, that book on St. Therese is excellent; I lead a discussion group on that one. I would also recommend “The Passion of Therese of Lisieux” by Guy Gaucher, and another really good one is “Two Sisters in the Spirit: Therese of Lisieux and Elizabeth of the Trinity” by Hans Urs Von Balthasar, examining their complementary spirituality as Carmelites (if you aren’t that familiar with our new St. Elizabeth of the Trinity, you might find it useful to read about her life first).

    #5 on the election: yes, it is a sad thing if physician assisted suicide passes (I’ve already lived in 2 states where that happened), but we can still do much to make sure it is not carried out by taking an active interest in those who are vulnerable and making sure to help them feel loved and valued and advocating for their needs when situations arise to put pressure on them. We have to be the “cheerleaders” for the Culture of Life. Even without this kind of law, there are many instances of passive euthanasia going on around us. I recall my grandmother, who had alzheimers but was otherwise healthy, lived in a care setting in Ohio. My father, in CA, received a phone call from staff members stating she had a urinary tract infection and “should they just let it run its course?” meaning let her die from it!! My dad and mom were on the next plane to OH to prevent such a demise. So, advocacy for others is all important. Not every elderly person has a family member standing by to protect them. They need our help, even though they are often invisible to our communities since they are hidden away in care facilities. So paying attention to our families, neighbors, and parishioners who are in that vulnerable position is going to truly be the only way to counteract any law that may pass. It is what we should be doing regardless of any law.

  • Melissa

    I quit facebook over a year ago and never looked back. It forced me to find new ways to connect with people and actually call or seek someone out. I justified having it for the community of moms I had access to, but at the end of the day real life relationships have to take priority. Now, if only I could apply that knowledge to instagram. If I could quit that too I would really be in business 🙂

  • Cami

    Be aware of the rating on The Crown on Netflix. It says TV-MA. In my experience in trying MA ratings they always end up with a lot of nudity, sex scenes, and other immoral content. It’s a shame that so many shows are ruined by crossing that line.

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