Archive for the ‘Liturgical Year Notebook’ Category

Virtue building is a very important mission for me as of late and I do feel compelled to step that job up a bit. We have fallen a bit lax on such things since the children smell weakness and life can feel at its weakest when mamma is hugely pregnant or with a newborn nursing babe in her lap. That perceived weakness can lead to building bad habits and I really need to take on building back good ones to take the place of the bad. I feel like I am using a magician’s slight of hand trick so not to draw too much attention to the bad habit. Rather, I am trying to focus on the good and shed more light on that so it outshines the bad in their perceptions of things.

bowl0012I really felt overwhelmed for quite some time but I knew that the only one that could help me with this was the Holy Spirit Himself. I was looking over the planners that we are using this year and came across an idea of using the fruits of the Holy Spirit to use as a spiritual flashlight project. I then thought this idea of using a word to direct our mission would be just the idea to punctuate our days. I am headed to Michaels for the letters I need to sand and paint in RED for this project.   These letters will stand on the window ledge of the accent window that is just above our dining room table…a perfect place to eyeball a purpose!

A fruit a month is what I will concentrate on as a visual reminder but I will cover all of the fruits as they come up in our reading selections which mostly follow the feasts of the liturgical year. I will place reminders in our Liturgical year notebooks beind the appropriately labeled dividers.

So, that being said…we covered Persistence today. Persistence in not only our reading but in our daily conversation…it does come in handy when you try to explain to an older child why it is still important to clean your room when the goops goopscome out of the hidden recesses of the room and wreck it for example. I highlighted that discussion with the word of persistence and the idea of meaningful work.  Meaningful work ideas show up regularly.  The monks had meaningful work copying the book of Kells…yours just happens to be your room at the moment…all for the Glory of God my dear!

I have tried to use my prolific nursing times to gather my little ones around me as often as I can and read all kinds of things with them. I have been trying to have them draw a picture while I read to have them be calm and focused and let the information sink in. Sometimes they are just constructing with legos or kinex or molding things with clay, but the idea is to keep them calm and as thoughtful as possible. Most especially I am trying to concentrate on stories that build character and virtue. If they do create any pictures, I place these pictures, including any copywork, quotes or religious clip art into their liturgical year notebooks which has been dedicated to St Paul this year (using this cover) . (I use the quotes for quick reminders and the stories to give them a framework of reference.)

We were discussing today’s saint St. John Neumann  and read a bit of his biography while the little ones found the places he visited on a large map. I then took the 3rd and 4th graders and read Thomas Finds a Treasure from Ecce Homo Press which is a story of his life. They discussed his unique life and mission with each other and told me that they agreed he had to be persistent to accomplish his very meaningful work. He had to use the tools that God gave him to get that work done!

I gave the following quote to the older ones for copywork with just the highlighted section for the younger ones:

~ From the Diary of St. John Henry Newman

Everyone who breathes, high and low, educated and ignorant, young and old, man and woman, has a mission, has a work.

We are not sent into this world for nothing;

we are not born at random; we are not here, that we may go to bed at night, and get up in the morning, toil for our bread, eat and drink, laugh and joke, sin when we have a mind, and reform when we are tired of sinning, rear a family and die. God sees every one of us; He creates every soul, . . . for a purpose. He needs, He deigns to need, every one of us. He has an end for each of us; we are all equal in His sight, and we are placed in our different ranks and stations, not to get what we can out of them for ourselves, but to labor in them for Him. As Christ has His work, we too have ours; as He rejoiced to do His work, we must rejoice in ours also.

~ Sermon: “God’s Will the End of Life,” from Discourses Addressed to Mixed Congregations, 1849, in Daniel M. O’Connell, Favorite Newman Sermons, NY: The America Press, 2nd ed., 1940, pp. 177-178

feast: Jan.5th

and this:

Once on a visit to Germany, he came back to the house he was staying in soaked by rain. When his host suggested he change his shoes, John remarked,

“The only way I could change my shoes is by putting the left one on the right foot and the right one on the left foot. This is the only pair I own.”

_ok, so it’s not a meaningful work quote…

but! you always need good humor doing the job God has given….using the equipment God entrustedyou with!

Reading the story The Wise King in Catholic Children’s Treasure Box book 7 works well with this point…it isn’t so much the tools you use, but what thought and persistence you use them with! Persistence is necessary! I told them that it would be good to think of themselves as God’s tool and use their time and gifts wisely. They can measure their own successes against God’s will for them.

As seen on a billboard of a Lutheran Church:

“Failure is the path of least persistence.”


“Consider the postage stamp:
Its usefulness consists in the ability
to stick to one thing till it gets there.”

~ Josh Billings, humorist

So there it is in an unedited nutshell…I am trying to throw my thoughts out there in a clear way as I nurse at the keyboard and have limited use of my typing fingers…so e’scuse the errors-k? ;o)

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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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I have been away from the computer so very much since lent started.  I am glad in a way but I miss blogging so much.  I managed to finally get up a post about readying the heart and home for lent at the new Lenten blog These Forty Days.  Come on over and drop us a line!

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While searching on the web this week we came across this interesting piece on The Book of the Hours and Our Lady. 

"The Books of Hours were the prayer books used by laypeople in medieval times.  Commissioned by royal family members, the nobility and wealthy patrons, they became status symbols, the jewels in the collections of book collectors."

We enjoyed viewing the illustrations  and discussed how some of these illuminations were used for different times of the day and seasons.   We especially liked the reference to the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary as we pray it frequently and love how, over time, the words come from our lips memorized.  There is such a special simplistic yearning of my heart to say such words often.  It edifies the spirit. 

I introduced the dc to illuminations while we were learning to read and write some years ago at the suggestion of Julia Fogassy from Our Father’s House.  I had the Dover book The Book of Kells and used that as an illustration of illumination so to speak.  I showed the children the illustrations and explained how very important their work was and how very exacting it had to be.  It was their great work..their Magnum Opus and all was dedicated to the Glory of God.  So too, was their work (the schoolwork and chores of the children) special to the Lord.  I had them look at their work like in the Sound Beginnings phonics book we have used…what is your best work and why, what is your least favorite work and why.  How would you like to take your least favorite and make it your favorite.  How could you do this? 

So too, is the way we approach art.  It raises the heart and mind above the ordinary and makes it extra- ordinary. 

Our latest art assignment involves making our own illuminated calendar using fine art for the months using their own choices…though taking into account this list from the site referenced above:

January  – Feasting

February – Sitting by the fire

March – Pruning vines

April – Garden scene

May – Hawking or boating

June – The hay harvest

July – Reaping the wheat
August – Threshing

September – Harvesting grapes

October – Ploughing and sowing

November – Gathering acorns for pigs

December – Killing the pig or baking bread

LOL frankly, I think baking bread would be an excellent illustration for the month of December…killing pigs isn’t my "thing" ;o)  I think the pictures of the Threshers and The Angelus for July would be a wonderful choice.  My suggestion was to find different works of art illustrating Our Lady doing different household tasks or someone modeling Our Lady in the doing of them.  I also recommended they chose a flower that matched their choice that showed some virtue or attribute of our Lady using this chart.   We are still tossing ideas around.  The finished product as yet will be determined and completed during the coming week or so.  I want to put this at the beginning of the Liturgical Year Notebook.

We  loved  reading this book….Marguerite Makes a Book and want to imitate what we have learned there using this art project…Illuminated lettering Kit…will be coming in the mail shortly.  We would love to give it a go!

This is  a great site (Leaves of Gold) that was posted by dear Martha at the 4Real board.  I parked my older ones at the computer and had them go through these pages step by step.  There are eight slides from illuminated manuscripts that pose "discovery questions" and answers that help the student (and teacher) explore each manuscript.

Could you imagine using this notebook to put your best copy work in??…what a find!

For further illustration here is a hypertext Book of Hours:


"The medieval "Book of Hours" evolved out of the monastic cycle of prayer which divided the day into eight segments, or "hours." These portable books designed for individual laypeople are smaller and less complicated than those used by the monks and designed for use by individuals. Usually, a Book of Hours include a liturgical calendar, along with the seven "Penitential Psalms" and additional prayers devoted to particular saints or personal issues. Most Books of Hours were devoted to the Virgin Mary."

I am hungry to know more….still seeking more resources!

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I can’t wait to try this and some hot tea in the morning!  Can you smell it baking already?!  It will go real well for our morning read-aloud…An Early American Christmas by Tomie DePaola.  True to our new way of eating, we are substituting a few ingredients…like the sugar…

I want to do something artsy with this book…I’ll let you know how it goes ;o) 

I am awaiting Cranberry Christmas from the library…maybe for that one we will try Cranberry Orange Tea Bread!

We are scrapping though the Advent season and recording all of our seasonal read-alouds!  I looove the picture books of this joyous season!!

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Triumph_of_the_holy_cross_ceiling_lady_c_2 Today is the feast of the Exultation (or Triumph) of the Holy Cross and tomorrow is the memorial  of Our Lady of Sorrows….how beautiful the two should be celebrated together on the Church calendar!

Christ Jesus, who, though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likenes of men. And being found in human form He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even death on a cross.

Therefore God has highly exalted Him and bestowed on Him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

— Philippians 2:5-11

Month_9_sorrowsFlower Symbols of Mary’s Sorrows  

"One plant legend of special relevance to Christ’s Cross is that of
the herb, basil (Ocimum basilicum) which was held to be of such
close association with the Cross that St. Helena was able to find
the location of the True Cross by digging for it under a colony of
basil plants.  We know of the association through St. Helena, but
just what the legend, the "fallen petal", was is not known to us.
Possibly it was one of the plants which was reputed to have sprung
up at the foot of the Cross where Christ’s blood drops or Mary’s
tears fell, as is reported in legends of other plants.  Or it may
have been offered to Christ as a soothing herb.  Another "fallen
petal" is the use of "basilica" as the name for the cross-shaped
floor plans of church  buildings.  Also, from the practice in some
areas of strewing branches of basil before church communion rails,
it came to be known as "Holy Communion Plant"." ~from mgardens.org

Here is a representation of a Sorrowful Mary Garden

"each station is associated with a flower or
flowers whose popular Mary-connection may prompt a devotional
insight into that station’s significance in the saving paschal
mystery of the suffering, death and resurrection of Christ.

Extending the practice of meditating on the Stations of the Cross,
the flower symbols of the Sorrowful Mysteries, planted around the
garden cross, provide a mosaic of meanings for continuing
meditation on the passion of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ."

At Catholic Culture we read :"The Sign of the Cross we make over ourselves before prayer helps to fix our minds and hearts to God. After prayer we make it to keep close to God. During trials and temptations our strength and protection is the Sign of the Cross. At Baptism we are sealed with the Sign of the Cross, signifying the fullness of redemption and that we belong to Christ. Let us look to the cross frequently, and realize that when we make the Sign of the Cross we give our entire self to God — mind, soul, heart, body, will, thoughts."

O cross, you are the glorious sign of victory.
Through your power may we share in the triumph of Christ Jesus.

Stabat_mater_1On the menu today: Hot Cross Buns

For the Liturgical Year Notebook:
Catholic Mosaic: The Tale of Three Trees

Print out and learn these 2 songs:

Lift High the Cross
212 Stabat Maters??
Stabat Mater

google search for crosses with the dc and paste into a Word document collage

also make a notebook sorrowful Mary garden with the appropriate googled clip art flowers surrounding this picture

review the 7 Sorrows of Mary and their Scriptural references

ask the dc if they want to do any other projects based on the above links!

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