Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Harvest Time

Indiana Pumpkin Patch

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Curious as a Cathy

What's in a Name?

In her weekly Coffee Chat, Rory Bore of Time Out for Mom has asked, “What does your name mean? If you go by an alias, why did you choose that particular moniker?”

Having an unusual name, I am often asked about it. It is: McGuffy Ann, in that order. McGuffy is my first name. Ann is my middle name, and I usually am known as Annie. It is easier and it suits me.

McGuffy comes from the original spelling of McGuffey. The McGuffey Clan originally came from the western coastal mountains of Scotland. “McGuffey” was a nickname meaning “dark peaceful one”. Some of the McGuffey Clan migrated to Ireland, bringing about variations of the name.

Though fair complected, I can identify with the meaning of my first name in a different way. I am sensitive to the dark side of life, having had a difficult life myself. Consequently, I lean towards that in much of my writing. However, being conscious of the dark makes me strive for peace. Faith guides me.

The origin of the name Ann is Hebrew. It is a derivative of the name Hannah. Other variations are Anna and Anne. The meaning is “full of grace or mercy”.  I feel grace and mercy are essential. I strive for these, too. I seek grace and mercy, but I seek to be gracious and merciful, as well.

I like my name, and am not offended when asked about it. I find it interesting that so many people use aliases. This makes me wonder about their names, especially names they choose to go by. If I am asked about my name, I will usually then ask about theirs. I try to call people by their chosen name or nickname. It is part of being comfortable with who you are. I respect that.

Names are fascinating, and I think they are important. We carry our name with us throughout our entire life. Our identity and sense of self is linked to our name. That’s what’s in a name.

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Classic

A Texas Hot Rod
1955 Chevy BelAir

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Monday, October 20, 2014

My Sisters the Saints

A Spiritual Memoir

By Colleen Carroll Campbell

This spiritual memoir is powerful. The author draws the reader in with its very human journey. The challenges she faces are very relatable. As she is dealing with illness and loss, relationships, the draw of motherhood, career issues, and more, she is also trying to find her place in the world.   

Ultimately, she turns to her Catholic roots to help sort it all out. Reconnecting with women saints at critical junctures along the way, the author finds a sense of sisterhood. She realizes these very human women faced similar challenges. Each saint struggled with spirituality in a harsh human world, too. Reading the words from their personal journey, she is able to draw inspiration and strength for her own. 

This beautiful memoir reads easily and quickly, but leaves you feeling fulfilled. As a woman who was raised Southern Baptist and converted to Catholicism, I could relate to her spiritual journey. This is an important book that I will read again and again.