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Clothes Shopping with a Conscience

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As a "casual Catholic" growing up in an affluent Long Island suburb, I never thought about shopping for clothes as a moral act. I just went out and bought what I wanted. But as my faith has deepened in adulthood, and I take my promises as a Catholic woman to heart, so too has my awareness that every choice that I make, from the car I drive to the clothes I wear, makes a statement about who I am and what I believe.

One choice that most of us take for granted is the choice of what we wear. I'm not talking about whether to wear pants or a skirt, no makeup or makeup. I'm talking about where your clothes come from, and the impact that their manufacture, shipping and sales have made on countless people along the way. From the people making the fabric to the people hunched over sewing machines for 12 hours a day sewing cuffs and collars, your clothing choices can either help or hurt the world around you.
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My Annual Mani-Pedi and a Trip through Outer Space

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[part of the SmallSuccess link-up on CatholicMom.com]

The pedicurist recoiled in horror when she beheld the extent of my callouses. "Callous cream," she sternly recommended, and then proceeded to chatter excitedly in Korean to the pedicurist next to her, presumably describing my icky feet in gory detail. After rubbing the magic callous removal cream into my feet and scraping, scraping, scraping, the pedicurist triumphantly raised the scraper with the incontrovertible evidence of my appallingly negligent foot care. She must have thought I had been herding yak barefoot over the Russian steppes all last summer.

But, with six kids, I don't have time for weekly or even monthly visits to the nail salon. And I made a bargain with myself not to get that annual mani-pedi until my husband and I revised the proposal on our marriage advice book and sent it off to the publisher. As soon as I pressed the send button on the proposal, I hustled down to the local NAILS NAILS NAILS! for th…

Girls Just Want to Have Fun!

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A gorgeous jacket caught my eye as I was flipping through an issue of a fashion magazine, trying to find the “perfect” haircut—you know, just cute enough to say I am still “fashionable” yet not too cute as to say “I’m 54 years-old trying to look 30.” The jacket was what I would call “car length.” It was covered in an animal print.
I loved it!
At that point, having lost my focus on trying to find a picture of a perfect haircut to take to my stylist, I intently surveyed the different animal print products—from handbags to pants to shoes—each seeming a bit wild and yet quite appealing. Of course at my age I couldn’t fathom donning a full-on animal print ensemble—or maybe I was never at the correct age to wear such an outfit—but there was still something attractive about an animal print accessory, and most especially that coat!
It just seemed “fun.”
Sometimes, as Christian women, we forget that we are called to have fun. In our day-to-day living in which we embrace our roles as wives and mo…