Welcome to another edition of Answer Me This. Here are this week’s questions:
1. Do you hate happy clappy church music?

Will you all throw me out of the club if I say that I don’t? 
I know I shouldn’t like it. 
Intellectually, I understand that the jazzy hymns of the modern era are inferior to the rich historical deposit of Catholic liturgical music. 
I know it makes many faithful Catholics (including the one to whom I am married) sad or mad or disappointed or distracted or infuriated.
But I mostly think I’m just not sophisticated enough musically to really appreciate the difference. Either is fine with me. I’ll try to follow along singing the many little up and down dots of a Latin chanty-type song (I told you I didn’t know what I was talking about) or I’ll tap my toes to some folksy abomination and not be bothered a bit.
And then there’s this:

which I don’t dislike nearly as much as I ought to, and will now have stuck in my head for three days.
2. What is your priority: eating or sleeping?
They both rank below accomplishing all the things, but between the two, I’d have to say sleeping.
Noël Hallé – Le Doux Repos

I have an odd schedule. I write in the middle of the night, because that’s the only time the house is quiet. So I need an afternoon nap, especially if I’m pregnant or nursing, which I have been for the last twelve years.

I figure I can always grab something to eat while I’m doing something else, but if I see a nap window, I take it.

3. What type of milk do you drink in your house?

Our family consumes whole dairy products. I try to make foods from scratch and choose the least-processed options available. I have a general ideological problem with diet or reduced calorie food in general (food is FOR calories, that’s its whole point) and current research seems to indicate that lower fat dairy doesn’t make for lower fat persons anyway.

4. What is a book that changed your perspective on something?

So, so many. I’ll try to narrow it down. Okay, I’m going to say this one:

Angel in the Waters
It’s a sweet picture book about a baby waiting to be born. My kids all love it, and I often give it as a gift to friends expecting another baby. It’s great for helping soon-to-be big brothers and sisters to understand how babies develop.

For me, it also had a much deeper significance. It helped me to understand Heaven. 

Obviously, I want to go to Heaven. I know that. I want to be with God and worship him alongside the angels and the communion of saints.

But sometimes, or all the time, it’s hard for me to yearn for Heaven, because of how wonderful THIS world is. I love my life and my faith and my family. I love the warm sun and the twinkling stars and craggy mountains and crashing waves and towering skyscrapers. I love the way goats walk on their tiptoes and how octopuses can jet propel and that there are such things as tiny tiny owls.

Photograph by JASON IDZERDA

I used to worry about why I couldn’t seem to wrap my head around wanting Heaven, but this book helped. In it, the unborn baby is perfectly content inside his mother. When his angel tells him it’s time to move on, he’s reluctant to go. But his angel assures him that the next world will be bigger and better than the one he’s in now, and he will like it more. And that eventually the angel will come to take him to an even bigger and even better world.

So that’s how I see it now. I’m content where I am, like an unborn baby is content. But the world outside of the inside of a mother is astoundingly, amazingly better and more complex and wonderful than that baby could possibly imagine. And that’s how Heaven will compare with this world.

I shouldn’t expect to understand it, but I believe in it.

5. Who is your favorite saint?

I like a lot of saints. All of them to be precise. But, my two favorite saints today are intertwined in my oldest son. Jack is named John Paul after Pope John Paul II, who is of course being canonized in Rome this very day! 

JPII is the Pope of my youth. He was elected when I was two years old, and when he died his beautiful and public death, I was a wife and the mother of two young children.

And he’s just so cool.

My other favorite is quite obscure in comparison. 

St. Nuno was a knight in 14th century Portugal, who renounced his title and family fortune to become a Carmelite priest. We learned of his existence as we attempted to get Jack into Pope Benedict XVI’s line for Jack’s First Communion on a family pilgrimage to Rome. Through the postulator of St. Nuno’s cause we were able to get Jack the very last seat in the VIP section of St. Nuno’s canonization Mass and our whole family has had a great devotion to him ever since.

We ask for his intersession on all sorts of crazy stuff and boy, does he ever come through for us. I’m guessing he doesn’t have a whole lot of other folks coming to him with prayer requests. 

You might want to give him a try, tell him the Tierneys sent you.

6. Introvert or extrovert?
I am an introvert. The Today Show says so.
But I’m making it work:

AN INTROVERT’S GUIDE TO STAY AT HOME MOTHERING

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Here’s What I Wore Sunday, on Saturday because we went to the Vigil. We’re off to Chicago this morning to attend the funeral of Jim’s Aunt Maureen. She was loved by all. Please pray for the repose of her soul.

Dress: Old Navy Maternity, even though I’m not, because tags aren’t the boss of me
Scarf: a gift from my mom, because I’m nursing, and Haley is right
Necklace & Boots: Anthropologie
Jacket: Gap

For next week’s Answer Me This I’m tagging:

Kayleen at When I Grow Up. Post to check out =
my grandma’s house (You do not want to miss this tea set.)


Jenna at Wilber Huset. Post to check out = 
Top 10 Newborn Items (The recommendations look great, and there are some things on this list I’d like to try, but mostly there’s an epic family photo in there.)

Here are next week‘s questions for them and for you:
1. Are you becoming your mother?
2. Coffee or tea?
3. What foreign country would you like to visit?
4. Do you cry easily?
5. How often do you wear heels?
6. Do you play an instrument?
I look forward to reading everyone’s posts!
Next week’s installment will go live at 10pm Pacific Saturday night, and will be open until 10pm Wednesday night.

So, please, answer this week’s questions for yourself in the comments. If you have a blog, answer the questions there, link back to this post, and link your blog post up below. Thanks for playing along.