Archive for March, 2007

I read this funny article…and it does make you think deeper.  I mean….Why call it "devils food"?… and why could something that is so darned tempting be ..oh so bad for you??….Pass the salad please! 

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...to have a dear sweet husband that loves so much and sends me the sweetest bunch of spring flowers for my birthday…laced with purple because he knows I have the mantle decked out in purple for lent…
…to have SEVEN sweet children who bring so much light and love into my heart….
…to have so many wonderful patron saints to guide me and the Good Wonderful God to bless me with it all!

Thank you, God  …for all your gifts..too numerous to mention…so generously shared…
It truly is a wonderful life!

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Just some random thoughts….more on the Domestic Monastery

I have a lot of great ideas…well planned wonderful fruitful things that always seem to get rained out by real life.  I remember an actor once saying that he would not work with children and small animals because they would "steal the show".  I know how he feels in a way.  I realize that answering God’s call, often times allows me to use my creativity but I will not feel any peace unless it is part of God’s plan…no matter how perfect the "idea" might seem to me.  Oftentimes, I hear of someone having a baby or being laid up and I want to bring over a dinner…and I burn it or the car won’t start.  I want to mail out a gift to someone and I find it sitting for the THIRD time under the front seat of the car…and I want to crawl under a rock.  I found an old bill I thought was paid and the sweet people never called me to tell me I never sent the money but politely sent a please remember to pay me bill…sheesh…Can ‘t I do any of these good deeds right?  God is a patient soul!! So then I tend to think more of "I wonder what the Good God is thinking of me right now. 

What would be the best way to steward my time

…do I own my own time??…

and talent? 

…do I have any talent anymore for anything….I am so very distracted I can’t remember! 

Sometimes I think how good it is that God is All-knowing and can even work with a mishapen piece of clay like me…covered in old dry cheerios and dryer lint.  …an imperfect art medium to be sure…

So I had this random thought one night…and it goes something like this….

Have you ever had a hard time with continually  thinking of someone?  Maybe there is a thought of someone from the past that you can’t seem to let go of?  It happens to me all the time and  used to bother me…but then I thought more of the whys of it and began to think that just MAYBE it was their guardian angel “pestering” me.  Let me explain. 

One night I woke up….

…and I thought of a young man from my past.  We had grown up together for a few years and were pretty good friends.  He went off to college and slowly disappeared from my life and probably never gave me a second thought but there are times I begin to wonder about him.  I know he is married now and has children and a good job…somewhere.  I know that I would never contact him in real life…but he is still sneaking into the corner of my thoughts at times.  So I tried something.  I prayed to God and asked Him why this “young” boy kept coming into my thoughts.  I prayed that he was still a good guy and a good dad and a good worker.  I prayed that he was active in his children’s lives and supported his spouse in every way and they were a good couple, a strong family and a good example to those around them, in their schools and workplaces…etc…and were good faithful Catholics.   I basically just rambled on to God about whatever came into my brain at that EARLY hour of the A.M.  I prayed the rosary for a little while and the thought just left my head…as quickly as it came …and I was suddenly sleepy.

Sometimes I wonder if God just needs to call “A Few Good Men” (or Mommies) to help Him out and make peoples paths a little straighter…the road a little smoother, the sunlight on them a little kinder.  Those little acts of kindness in little moments are the kind of mission work that I can do when… having to drag myself out of bed to tend to a cry of need at night, …or…. while folding diapers …or… while scrubbing out the tub…all the while my toddler is cuddling her baby doll at my feet….and the 4 year old is jumping up and down singing a song reeeeallly LOUD …Or… while the family is at work or prayer or rest with their needs basically met….you know…while living my "hidden life".   …Hey!  I can do this!!

Hmm…I think mommies are called to be of service in the still, silent, unnoticed ways…missionaries in our own right…as God loves the small, the unnoticed and the seemingly insignificant to do some share of His Great Work.  Maybe this kind of little prayer for others could just be another way of answering the call of the Monastery Bell

So I arise and do my job…in the day and in the night…but with a prayer for someone else in my heart.  That is something I can feel is an accomplishment…something I can actually finish…a sweet thought during my daily duties…but not for myself….for others.

Image:Danny Hahlbohm "Gift Of Love".

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I was just visiting at Mary Ellen’s for the Loveliness of St. Patrick’s Day!!…what a beautiful  job Mary Ellen!!

Saint Patrick’s Breastplate

I  arise today

Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,

Through the belief in the threeness,

Through confession of the oneness

Of the Creator of Creation.

I arise today

Through the strength of Christ’s birth with his baptism,

Through the strength of his crucifixion with his burial,

Through the strength of his resurrection with his ascension,

Through the strength of his descent for the judgment of Doom

I arise today

Through the strength of the love of Cherubim,

In obedience of angels,
In the service of archangels,
In hope of resurrection to meet with reward,

In prayers of patriarchs,

In predictions of prophets,

In preaching of apostles,

In faith of confessors,

In innocence of holy virgins,

In deeds of righteous men.

I arise today

Through the strength of heaven:

Light of sun,

Radiance of moon,

Splendor of fire,

Speed of lightning,

Swiftness of wind,

Depth of sea,

Stability of earth,

Firmness of rock.

I arise today

Through God’s strength to pilot me:

God’s might to uphold me,

God’s wisdom to guide me,

God’s eye to look before me,

God’s ear to hear me,

God’s word to speak for me,

God’s hand to guard me,

God’s way to lie before me,

God’s shield to protect me,

God’s host to save me

From snares of devils,

From temptations of vices,

From everyone who shall wish me ill,

Afar and anear,

Alone and in multitude.

I summon today all these powers between me and those evils,

Against every cruel merciless power that may oppose my body and soul,

Against incantations of false prophets,

Against black laws of pagandom

Against false laws of heretics,

Against craft of idolatry,

Against spells of witches and smiths and wizards,

Against every knowledge that corrupts man’s body and soul.

Christ to shield me today

Against poison, against burning,

Against drowning, against wounding,

So that there may come to me abundance of reward.

Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,

Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,

Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,

Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,

Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,

Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,

Christ in every eye that sees me,

Christ in every ear that hears me.

I arise today

Through a mighty strength, the invocation of the Trinity,

Through belief in the threeness,

Through confession of the oneness,

Of the Creator of Creation.

Image: Curier and Ives

For Liturgical Year Notebooks:

St Patrick’s Breastplate

Coloring Image


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Your Irish Name Is…

Maura Murray

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I just can’t speak. 

My voice is gone. 

I have read aloud the Hidden Treasure of Glaston for the last two days and looooved every minute of it.  But, alas, my voice doth fail me!  Catholic high adventure during the middle ages at its finest!

The twins (13yodds) were seated on chairs next to me…No… on the EDGE of their chairs and once in awhile they interrupted with "Why did they do that""What do you think that means?! and "Do you think that is TRUE?!"  I had to remind them more than once not to pull me away from the wonderful picture that the words of the story were painting for me in my mind.  I told them "When the words come out of my mouth you will know!" LOL  (They still think I am holding out on them when I don’t tell them  everything ;o) 

Wonderful thing is, we have been covering Illumination for some time now and are very interested in it.  This book "illuminated" that study rather well with its plot.   Thrilling read.  We give this book 3 thumbs up!

Hmm…time to update the sidebars with the new reads we are going to be sharing!…

How  much fun it will be to jump from England to Ireland tomorrow!!

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The little ones learn with their fingers.  Don’t you feel like you are forever saying "Don’t touch!" while they are young?  Oh, come on!  Give in!  …;o)  just teach them HOW to touch!  Do you wonder why they trace the same things with their fingers over and over??  I do!  They are looking and learning with them.  The fingers have eyeballs of their own, if you will ;o)  (and this is how my brother-in-law came up with his cartoonish eyeball people….but I digress…)

As I was talking to sunshine boy (4)… Do you touch with your elbows? …no?  Ok, then…with your nose?   No?   Hmmm…what do you touch with?  …oh, your FINGERS!  Aah!  but LOOK…use your EYES too!  Look! Look at your hands…are they CLEAN?  No?  Quick…off to the bathroom with you and wash your hands with WARM water and SOAP!  Say a Hail Mary S L O W L Y!

While he was in the next room washing his hands I had my sandpaper letter tackle box opened up under the kid’s learning  table in the dining room (it is low enough to the floor that I can kneel in front of it and ds can use a small chair if he so chooses or he can stand and it is the right height for him)  and had the letter "b" card on top of the table.  The table was free of everything but this one letter.  There was no doubt that this was the only thing to look at.

Ok, are you ready?  Look!  Are those fingers CLEAN?  Ok, you LOOKED AT your fingers…now tell me, how do you LOOK WITH them?  By touching letters!  Yes!  How do we touch these letters…Gently?   I    will show you how I look with my fingers.  Did you SEE  LOOK closely!  DO you SEE?  Look with YOUR fingersMy fingers can make SOUNDS.  Do your fingers know how to make this sound?  Show me!  My fingers can teach you…( I traced the letter b with my fingers and made the "buh" sound) see?  Now, let your fingers teach me….

We did this with the letters b, m , n, and a.  We then pushed some of the letters together and made the word m a n  .  I then told ds…"  Look with your fingers at this word.  These letters are trying to tell you what this word says.  Can you say the sounds you see and find out what this word is?"

He figured it out in just two tries and the wiggles took over his entire body as he radiated pure joy.  "I am reading!  I am reading!"  and he doesn’t know yet, but because he knows the letters by tracing them, he can write too! ;o)

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Visual DNA

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Super Nutty, Ultra-Crunchy, Granola Earth Mama!…just 5 more points and I could have been as crunchy as grape nuts!  LOL! …never woudda guessed ;o)
HT: to Margaret

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I got hit in the head by a brick today.  I mean it!  (Figuratively speaking of course!  LOL) "It" happened while trying to teach large-motor boy(8) to learn…ok, I mean ….trying to teach large-motor boy how to buckle down and pay attention to some of the "school subjects", I had to be willing to learn too.  This child has been my biggest parenting challenge since he turned three.  (God love him!!)  As resistant to the traditional way of doing things (schoolwork only being just one of them) as he was…I found that I was resistant too.   Can you believe THAT??  Who ME??!…I have been trying hard…on the job with bells on every day….me??!!…hmmm …can you just feel God nodding vehemently??

I already know how to read and write and figure math problems.  It is ds’s turn to learn this stuff! (Can you see my hand sweeping across the bookshelves in a Vannah White imitation??) But WAIT!  before that happens…I have to learn something new… bbbut… now?  Yessir! 

I had to learn how  to:

see the world as he does
find out how HE learns

then….*deep breath*…*steel yourself*…..follow THROUGH!

Give and take…I have to give and take from him as he gives and takes from me. 

He reads for me…then we play a game of chess…HE is teaching. 
We do a math lesson…I then have to learn how to throw the magnetic darts correctly….(thank God ds is a patient soul!)

He listens as I read him a bible story and he draws a picture and then narrates the story back to me as I record it in his bible book.  I then learn about his plans to fashion a squirrel-proof bird feeder. 

I am learning how to relax and have fun even though my responsibilities weigh heavily on me as they are sooo numerous.  I am finding out that these same responsibilities are easier to bear as I learn the way this child does.  This child isn’t hard to teach…I AM!  God writes our lives with crooked lines….sneaky as He is ;o)…so He knew this when He entrusted this precious soul to our care.  The question of the day is….."Am I patient enough to learn something new today?"  (I love praying for God’s Will…after all He knows best and He is perfect!  Ok, so I pray this prayer with one eye closed like I am kinda hiding from the sky that may just fall on me….LOL)

All the prayers and pleading to live according to HIS way have very unexpected answers.  I guess He likes to be as unpredictable as my son!    Talk about learning more about God though His creation!

Homeschooling…just WHO is teaching WHOM?

Mark 10:14

Oh wow…I am learning something new in each second now…

My littlest one just got an ouchie while playing and just now wanted me co cuddle her in my arms so she could cry just a few tears and snuggle the pain away and my eyes caught the saying on the coffee mug sitting next to me…it says "May your day be filled with love"  I never read that mug before….even though I must have cleaned it a thousand times….Imagine trying to live every day with a motivation of REAL love.…( God’s love is sacrificial after all…) looks like   that is the WAY to go…to THE KINGDOM of course! Thanks God!  Thanks to you, it surely is! 

(I can’t believe it took me five years to learn this….I needed a brick today…I could use it to build  new foundations in his learning adventures…or should I say…MY learning adventures….LOL)

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