Friday, November 30, 2007

St. Andrew, Apostle

In my husbands family, St. Andrew holds a special place in their hearts, and therefore, mine too. I think it was about 9 years ago, maybe 10. My sister-in-law was eight months pregnant with her second child. Today is the anniversary of the day her son, Andrew, was stillborn. As you can imagine, this was especially hard for her, and out of respect for her, I'll leave it at that, except to tell you that she has been blessed by four more children after Andrew, and one miscarriage.

(1st century). Andrew was initially a disciple of John the Baptist's, and he first met Jesus at his baptism. He was called to be the first disciple of Christ's, and later brought Peter to Jesus (Peter was his brother). They followed Jesus off and on for awhile, but while fishing, Jesus called them to become "fishers of men". After the death of Jesus, he preached in Scythia and Greece, and some traditions have him preaching in Byzantium. One very old tradition says he was crucified at Patras, Acaia, on a X shaped cross. He is patron saint of Russia (one tradition tells of him preaching there, although it is not certain), and of Scotland (another tradition says some of his relics were brought there in the fourth century).

Photo Credit: Catholic Culture
All information taken from John J. Delaney's Pocket Dictionary of Saints

Of Rain

It is a drizzly, wet Friday here in Arizona! I love it, I love having my windows open and hearing the sound of rain coming through them. I love sitting on my couch and smelling the wonderful, clean smell of rain. It is a little strange though, to have the windows open, and smelling and hearing rain when I have a Christmas tree up in our front window. Strange, but nice.

Prayerfully Expecting

Go on over to Donna-Marie's place and enter her contest for your chance to win a copy of Prayerfully Expecting.

Snuggle time

Fritter is a full-fledged walker now. I've tried to catch him on the camera though, but he sees the camera, and since he's still much faster at crawling, he plops down and crawls after me to reach it. But I know that he walks, so I guess that's what counts.

He has been doing very well with the whole weaning thing. No night waking (yea!), but during the day he has become very clingy. I suppose that's normal, but for him it's strange...nice, but strange. You see, he has never really been a very snuggly child. Even slowing him down enough to nurse was sometimes difficult. We've never been able to have him in our bed (except when he was maybe a week old and still a sleepy newborn), and hugs were virtually non-existent.

Of course, I believe that he still needed hugs and kisses and snuggles even when he didn't want them ;-). But since he has weaned, he can't get enough of me. Where he used to sit at my feet and play independently, he is now crawling up my leg, wanting to be held. It's fine with me. It's a nice change. I will gladly stop whatever I'm doing for some snuggling with my little man. It's fun when he reaches up to me like he's saying, "Mommy hold me, I need you". I need you too, baby.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Journal Pages

Well, I have figured out how to post my documents online so that I can make them available to you. The only one I haven't been able to post is my Daily to-do, which is also a calendar. Google documents won't let me upload it because it is too big. I will figure out a way though! ;) So far here is what I have.

Master To Do
Morning Routine
Evening Routine

This is all a work in progress, but I'm sure you get the idea. Feel free to use whatever you want. I recommend at least the recipes. I've compiled them for my menu. Some of them are family recipes, and if I do any improvisations, I added that too. Others are recipes I have just picked up from around, but while some are a little more involved, there are many that are very, very easy and quick.

*Note: If you decide to use any of this stuff, I suggest loading it on Excel (Word for Recipes) and doing a little bit of formatting to make it pretty. When I uploaded these pages, it cut out all my pretty formatting and clip-art :-( but they are still usable, and you may be able to alter them to better fit your needs.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007


This is what I woke up to yesterday morning. I happened to look outside as I was doing my Morning Meditation. Isn't it pretty? I think it has an advertisement on it for Wendy's. :)

My Shiny Sink

I don't have any before pictures to show you, but I am very proud of it.

Thanks Flylady!

Home Management Journal Act II

My Home Management Journal is now up and running. Kind of. It still needs a lot of work, and the sections are still not complete. The details of this great tool are below, and once I figure out how to post links to my own documents, I will add those.

My first divider is Planning. In this section I have a 2008 calendar, a master To-Do list, and a Task sheet which are all inside page protectors. The task sheet list all the household cleaning tasks, and divides them up by Daily, Monthly, Weekly, Bi-Weekly, Bi-Monthly, Tri-Monthly, and Bi-Annual. After these, I have my Daily To-Do. It is set up similar to the one at Motivated Mom's, but I left all areas blank (except for the daily tasks part), and I plan to write in what I am going to do at the beginning of each week. This way I can tailor it to fit my ever changing needs. So far, I only have through the end of the year printed, but all of next year is ready to go. I will try to post this for you later. I plan to include my morning and evening routines in this section, but I'm not there yet.

Next comes Food. So far I have four weekly menus that I plan on cycling through at least until I'm ready for a new menu. This is inside a page protector. I plan on adding all the recipes in order for the menu, but again, I'm not there yet.

The Finance section is next. This section only includes our Check Register (I don't use the little ones that come with the checks, I buy an actual accounting columnar pad). I plan on adding to this, including a 6 month budget, savings goal and plans, and a debt reduction plan.

Soon I will have up Health, Faith, Contacts, and Travel sections. When I do I will post about them.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Home Management Binder Act I

Well, I got quite a bit done on my to-do list, but definitely not all of it. For one thing, I didn't really realize how much time it would take me to make a home management binder. I'm started though, and now that I understand what needs to go into it, I don't expect it to happen overnight. I have made up four weeks of menus, but I'm thinking I want to add a fifth. After having chicken Alfredo last week, DH reminded me that we also had it the week before. Oops! So I think this will help me not repeat meals so close to each other. Also, it will make my Mondays easier.

I know many people spread out their meal planning and grocery shopping throughout the week. Actually, I think a lot of people shop on Thursday for the coming week. For us, it seems to work better if I do everything on a Monday. I am forced to get out of the house this way (I am a total home-body). Also, I can really only think one week at a time. Anyway, so having my meals already planned out for me will shorten the process considerably.

Yesterday, I read through a few articles I found on Menus 4 Moms (if you haven't checked out this site yet, I highly recommend it. She feeds dinners to a family of six on around $65/week! And the recipes are very good, and usually easy!). So that got me started, but after Lisa's comment yesterday, I checked out FlyLady. Wow! Another highly recommended site. And the best part? They are both free!

I am going to assemble my binder today, and finish my calendar I am making on Excel. I know that you can usually buy these for pretty cheap, but I decided to make my own so that they are more personalized. I have another very long list of things to do today, including a doctor's appointment at 2:30, so I'd better get started!

Monday, November 26, 2007

To Do...

I have a ton of stuff to do today, so for your pleasure (hee) and for my information, I am posting my list here. It also makes me accountable for the stuff I don't get done.

Make home management binder
Make Christmas card list
Plan meals
Make grocery list
Grocery shop
Transfer sweaters to our closet
Clean fridge
Clean toilets
Sweep and mop floors (kitchen, laundry, and entryway)
Clean glass (livingroom)
Make dentist appointment
Make doctor appointment
Fill plants with soil
Make bed
Update MS Money files
Clean bathroom counters

Hmmm...that's a long list, I'd better get busy!


It seems as though my sweet-itty-bitty-baby is no longer an itty-bitty-baby although he is still sweet. I have been trying to wean him from nursing, and I really thought it would take longer than it has. Last week he was only nursing once in the mornings. And this morning...nothing. We'll see how the day goes, but I think this may be it.

"Wow! That was quick," you say? I know, I think so too, but we needed to kind of hurry it along a little bit (although I didn't think it would hurry this much). I really, really want to have another baby, God willing. And, before that should happen (my plans, right?) I have quite a few medical things that need taken care of that cannot be taken care of while nursing or pregnant. Like having all four wisdom teeth removed. Or getting the cyst on my wrist taken care of. Oh, I know some doctors say that these things are OK during pregnancy or while nursing, as long as care is taken, but I don't want to take any chances with my children's health. And after having my first miscarriage, I don't want to take any chances with my child's life. I'm sure you know what I mean.

The thing is though, I think all this weaning has been wrecking havoc with my hormones. (Uh, you think?) With the Thanksgiving holiday, came a long weekend for my dear husband. One he really deserved. And it went well, really well. Until Saturday night. On our way home from our parishes Christ the King celebration, I got grumpy. Really grumpy, for no real reason. Well, to be fair, in my mind at the time there were plenty of reasons to be grumpy. Like DH being fairly quite all day, and when I asked him what was going on he just told me he was just feeling "calm". But, I just knew there had to be something up, and danggit why wasn't he telling me what was wrong?! Yep, I can be like that.

The evening ended in a humph, and I went to bed feeling rather angry and sorry for myself. Yesterday morning, DH was already up, and must have heard Fritter talking to himself in his room. Instead of waking me up nice and sweet like you see in the movies (I can really be petty), he just said, "I'm going to go get Fritter". Some of the frustration of the night before must have still been hanging on to me, because I ended up spending some of my morning pouting in bed. (I told you, I can be such a child). And, after another round of really bad grumpiness (OK, meanness) in the car, we ended our evening watching a great movie that I will review later when we finish it.

Looking back at the past weekend in all its ugliness, I can see how I allowed myself to become a slave to my hormones and emotions. There are so many changes that we go through as women, from menstrual, pregnancy, postpartum, nursing, weaning, and finally menopause that we have to learn how to control ourselves, especially at these times. Just knowing about it doesn't entirely help, we have to have something concrete to do when we feel ourselves sliding. I'm not really sure what will work for me, yet, but I definitely don't want to put my family through another weekend like this.

So what do you do to control your emotions when you are feeling hormonal?

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Christ The King

We are having our Christ the King celebration this evening at our parish. We are starting with mass, and then afterwards there are going to be some talks and testimonials, and then a pot-luck. I am bringing a pan of baked Ziti, because it is oh-so-good.

And warm. Today has been surprisingly chilly for this part of the country. I am actually throwing on a cozy sweater for our celebration tonight. We went to a couple of yard sales today, and not realizing it could even get chilly here, none of us wore a jacket. Fritter had on a long sleeve shirt, but I feel even that was too little. Needless to say, we only got out twice to look at stuff. I just didn't feel right taking him out. Giving myself some credit though, it was probably in the mid 60s. I still have a Wyoming mind, with newly acquired Arizona skin, if you know what I mean. :)

On another note, with the business of this last week, I have missed out on the feast days of a number of saints, including St. Cecilia whom I really love. Instead of making another long post however, here are links to some good information about them.

And you can read information here about things your family can do for Christ the King. The feast day is on Sunday. Don't forget that you can get a plenary indulgence!

A Multi-Cultural Thanksgiving

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. How about you?

I used Michelle's idea and made a spinach dip with sliced pumpernickel, and then just bought a meat and cheese tray. The dip was great, and really, who can resist pepperoni and Colby cheese on a cracker?

The couple whose house we were invited to are from Honduras, but have lived in the U.S. for a while, and our area for about three years. Her mother and step-father were also there (the mother was the one doing the cooking, yum!). Another couple from Mexico (this is their first year here) and an American couple were there and then our little family. What an interesting group of people! What a great Thanksgiving!

There happened to be quite a few kids there for Fritter to play with, including an adorable 2 1/2 year old who loved to hug and kiss Fritter. The dinner was mostly traditional fare, with a little kick. The stuffing was made with hot Italian sausage (yum), the gravy had sliced mushrooms in it (yum, and I don't normally like mushrooms), and instead of pumpkin pie there was pumpkin flan (yum). I have to say, though, pumpkin pie is one of the things I look forward to most, but we just bought a store one and made it at home for ourselves.

I was also really surprised at how well Fritter did. He is a stickler for his routine, and if he is thrown out of it, he tends to get pretty fussy. We tend to plan around his nap times, but I'm sure you know that that is not always possible. We were supposed to be there at around 2, and dinner was at 3:30. Fritter's nap is usually around 2 until 4. So I was a little nervous about how fussy he would be, but he did fine. We brought his porta-crib, and set it up in their bedroom, and at about 4 I laid him down for a little while, because he was really tired. I didn't really expect him to go to sleep, but he did for about an hour. Maybe it was the turkey, or maybe he is just growing up a little bit. Whatever it was, that little bit of time for me to just sit around and talk with adults was really nice.

Anyway, it was a good Thanksgiving, even though we were away from our families.

On another note, yesterday, we put up our Christmas tree. We bought a fake one for several reasons. First, although we have been married for just over two years, we have never had a tree and I insisted this year. Last year, we still lived in student housing on campus, and putting something else in a 400 sq. ft. apartment was not wise, especially something flammable. Second, we will be going home for a week and a half for Christmas, and don't want to worry about a dying tree in our apartment. This way, we can still leave it up until Epiphany.

We also moved our desk into our bedroom. Originally it was in our dining area, by our table, and we had to squeeze to get in. The problem with apartments is that there is not a whole lot of ways to put furniture. Also, keeping Fritter out from under the desk was becoming a hassle. With all the wires and things it was a bit of a nightmare. So now it is in our bedroom and we can close the door to keep him out of the desk. The only problem is that when you are in here, you tend to feel a little secluded from the rest of the family. This could be a good thing though, because in the family areas, the focus will be more on the family and not on the rest of the world.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Four Missed Saints

This may end up being a long post, but I decided to include the four saints whose feast days I missed in one post. Here goes...

St. Albert the Great

(c. 1206-80) Born to an aristocratic family, he decided to become a Dominican after studying at the University of Padua, despite family opposition. After teaching in numerous places, he returned to Cologne with a reputation for great learning and intellect. He received his doctorate at the University of Paris in 1245, and was then named regent of the studia generalia at Cologne. One of his students who later became one of his close friends was Thomas Aquinas. He later served as theologian to the Pope before resigning to devote himself to study. He was appointed Bishop of Regensburg against his wishes, and after two years resigned. He worked for the reunion of the Greek Church with Rome, and also attempted to reconcile Aristotelianism to Christianity. He was "one of the first and among the greatest of natural scientists". He had great knowledge of biology, chemistry, physics, astronomy, and geography. One of his treatises proved the earth to be round. He was also a student of Arabic learning and culture, and because of his brilliance, he was called "the Universal Doctor" by his contemporaries. Some of his works include Summa theologiae, De unitate intellectus contra Averrem, De vegetabilibus, and Summa de creaturis.

St. Margaret of Scotland
(1045-93) She was the daughter of the exiled Prince Edward d'Outremer and a German princess. Because of her father's exile, she was raised at Stephen's court. At the age of twelve she was brought to the court of King Edward the Confessor, but was soon forced to flee England with her family after the Battle of Hastings. Her and her family were given refuge by King Malcolm III of Scotland, whom she would later marry. She was very prayerful, and had great concern for the poor and needy. She also supported synods to right abuses within the church such as simony and usury, regulated degrees of relationship in marriage, and set regulations for Lenten fast and Easter Communion. She also supported arts and education, and worked alongside Malcolm to found Holy Trinity Church at Dunfermline. She is the patroness of Scotland.

St. Gertrude
(c. 1256-1302) She was placed in the care of the Benedictine nuns at Helfta in Saxony when she was five where she became a pupil and friend of St. Mechtile. She later became a nun and at twenty-six she had her first of many visions of Christ. She recorded her experiences and Mechtilde's experiences which later appeared in her Book of Extraordinary Grace (Revelation of St. Gertrude). She also helped write a book of prayers and helped spread the devotion of the Sacred Heart.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary
(1207-31) At the age of four she was brought to the court of Landgrave Herman I of Thuringia. She was married to his son Ludwig when he became Landgrave and she bore four children. They were seen as the ideal couple. She had great charity and eventually had two hospitals built at the foot of her castle. When Ludwig died of the plague during a crusade, she was heartbroken. She was accused of mismanaging the estate because of her great charity, and forced out by her brother-in-law. She became a Franciscan tertiary and devoted herself to caring for the poor and sick. She led a life of exceptional poverty and humility until she was allowed back to the castle, because her son was recognized as the successor to the title of landgrave. She died at the age of twenty-four, and miracles were soon reported at her tomb.

Photo Credits: Catholic Culture
All information from John J. Delaney's Pocket Dictionary of Saints

Thanksgiving Appetizer

For Thanksgiving, we had originally planned to cook a meal for the three of us, and stay home. We are going home for Christmas, and traveling for Thanksgiving just seemed like too much right now. But, last week we were invited to some very sweet people's house for Thanksgiving dinner. I'm excited about it. They have three children, the youngest is Fritter's age. We don't get out much, not knowing many people, so this should be a treat. They have also invited a few other families as well.

We were asked to bring some sort of an appetizer, as all the traditional things like mashed potatoes are being provided. Now, I like to cook, and bringing things to a person's house that they will like is easy when it's something like a dessert. But alas, I have to figure out an appetizer. And yes, I have waited until the last minute to do so. But now, I have no more time to waste and my mind is drawing a blank. So I'm asking for your help. If you were me, what would you bring?

Presentation of the Virgin Mary

So I know that I've missed a few saints. I want to learn about them as well, but I figured I should post on this great Feast first.

Catholic Culture sites Protoevangel of St. James for some of this information. When an angel revealed her pregnancy to her, St. Anne is said to have vowed her future child, Mary, to the Lord. After her birth, Mary was brought to the sacred precincts. Only the best of Israel's daughters were admitted here. At 3 she was transferred to the temple, where she was "reared like a dove and received her nourishment from the hands of an angel".

While Catholic Culture lists many things we could do today to celebrate this feast, I think I am going to learn more about Mary in the Byzantine Liturgy.

Photo Credit: Catholic Culture

More to come today on the saints I have missed, and if time allows, a big post I have been thinking on for a while.

Go visit...

Diane's place and read her beautiful post. Sometimes we all need reminders like this, and not just during this hectic time of the year. This is something we should keep in mind all year long.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Oh! That smells clean!

There are not many things nicer than freshly scrubbed floors. Not just mopped. Nope. Scrubbed. I mean down on your hands and knees, with a bucket of Pine Sol and hot water, scrubbing floors. It's a lot of work, especially when you don't just stop at the kitchen. Oh no! You must go on to do the entryway, both bathrooms, and the laundry room.

And when you are done, you will look around and marvel at how clean your floors are. And how good your house smells. You will open your windows, to air out the place. And then, you will be so motivated, you will go on to dust your living room, and vacuum yours and the baby's room. Afterwards, you will be tired, but you will tell yourself that you must fold the laundry, and put it away before you rest. Because you are motivated, and you don't want to waste it.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Missed Feast Days

So you may have noticed that I have not posted on the Feast Days of St. Albert the Great (15th), St. Margaret of Scotland and St. Gertrude (16th), or St. Elizabeth of Hungary (17th). Very, very busy days around here, but I will catch us up. Soon. I hope.

Have a blessed weekend!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Needles and Tests

So today was Fritter's Well-Baby check-up. His ears are all better (thanks be to God). He did not get any vaccines today (I'll post about this another day when I have more time), but he did have to get blood drawn. *Sniff* The NP who was seeing him today, decided that he looked a little orangey and asked me if he has been eating a bunch of sweet potatoes or carrots. He eats them, but not everyday, and definitely not by the bucketful. So she wanted to check his bilirubin levels and carotene levels. I know that he is probably fine, it's not like he's jaundice orange or anything, I think he just has the same coloring as his dad. Just like some people (myself included) have more green (or olive) skin tones, DH and Fritter both have more orangey undertones.

But, of course I took him to do the tests, because if it IS something, it needs to be taken care of. Here I am, walking into the lab, expecting them to do a heel-poke like they did when he was a newborn. They called our names, and we went back to this little room, with a chair that looks like a prison electric chair. We had to sit in the chair, I had to put his little feet between my legs, and then hold one arm under my arms like I'm giving him a big bear hug. Then two nurses held his other arm and put a TOURNIQUET on his little tiny arm, found his vein, and drew his blood! I expected him to scream. He didn't. Worse, he cried in this little cry that is reserved for when he is scared. Afterwards, he was fine, actually he got over it rather quickly. It was much worse for me than for him. *Sigh*

Anyway, we are supposed to get the results back tomorrow, but I'm fairly confident he's fine.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007


I am SO tired! After DH leaves for work, if I don't get right down to the business of the day, (meaning that I don't sit on the couch and say prayers and drink coffee, it MUST be done somewhere uncomfortable) I will fall asleep, and won't wake back up sometimes until 8:30! Then, like today, I laid down after putting Fritter down for his nap, and I could have...actually I did...sleep longer than him! I woke up to him quietly playing in his crib.

It's not just today, it's been like this for about a week or so. Now, barely having time for this post, I must run around and get the house picked up really quick before DH gets home. No, I did not do it this morning. I had training for the class I am facilitating. *Yawn*. OK, no laying down *Yawn* must *Yawn* get *Yawn* to work....*Yawn*

Duckie Cake

Lisa mentioned the cake that I made for Fritter's birthday, so in case your interested, this is how I did it.

I used this double layer chocolate cake recipe. Then I used cream cheese frosting, the kind in the can, because it is SO good. Following Danielle's instructions, I googled duckie, and found this image. Originally, I was going to do the whole picture, but then I thought for my first try I'd better go simple. I wasn't able to find any paste food coloring, so I just used the liquid drops I had to make yellow and orange frosting.

Side note: at first I made the duckie's head about half that size. He looked like one of those shrunken head things. No link, but you know what I mean.

And I thought I couldn't get anymore humble...

and then I read the comments from my last post. I am truly shocked that a few of the women's blogs I read also hang around here. So I guess I was feeling a little sorry for myself, but it worked out good. It really did bring me back to earth and remember why I blog.

I have also learned quite a bit. First, as Michelle reminded me, this is a new blog, it is going to take some time. And, this will show you how new I am to the blog world, I just learned about Google Reader, Bloglines, and Feed Burner. Yep, I did. I'm still figuring out Feed Burner, so we'll see how that goes. But now I get the chance to play with more stuff!

So thank you, to all of you who felt it in their heart to give a nod in my direction. I really do appreciate it!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Because that's why I'm here.

So, at first I was a little perturbed. And then I was hurt. Now, I realize that it is good for my humility, and reminds me of the whole reason I started blogging in the first place.

What is going on, you ask? Well, I'll tell you. First of all, I feel Margaret's pain when she talks about not getting any comments on her blog. I don't either. But that's OK, because this is a new blog, and I don't have many readers yet. Really good discussions require a few people. So, I'm OK with that.

But for the past couple of days, when I check Google Analytics, it has been saying that I have not had one, no not one, visitor for THREE days!! Yesterday, I was a little hurt, and wondered if I may have offended someone by something I wrote. But then I thought, what could have possibly offended someone? Then I thought, maybe my readers were bored by me posting Feast Days and Saints.

Today, after yet again checking and realizing that there is still not a reader (things were going so good too) I got humble. I remembered that this blog was started for me. For me to sort out my thoughts, for me to learn. Learn about the saints, about me and ways to counteract my sometimes selfish thoughts. If no one wants to read about these things, that's OK. And if someone does want to read about these things, that's OK too. It's probably good that I got this reminder so early in the game. For a prideful person, humility it's a hard won virtue. So thank you for reminding and teaching me. Because that's why I'm here.

Fritter's Birthday Pictures

Because I know you all wanted to see them. Sorry it's taken me so long to post them. The whole family has been sick, with Fritter having a double ear infection on top of a very nasty cold bug.
Fritter with a very large gift that came in the mail from some good friends back home. "Can I open it now?"

And the box afterwards. See the still wrapped gift laying off to the side? He wanted to play with the box and packing paper much more than he wanted to tear off any wrapping paper. (He's afraid of ripping noises.)

Fritter's Birthday cake, that I am very, very proud of. Hey, I've never decorated a cake before!
His first taste of chocolate cake. Poor guy was so sick, I doubt he could even taste it.

But he gave it a good try. Notice the plate was missing. You can guess where that ended up. ;-)

Veteran's Day...

...a little late, but don't worry, I didn't forget to honor my own cute veteran and dear husband yesterday. I just forgot to post something here. Thank you to all of the men and women who have worked to protect our country, past and present. Without you, we may not have the right to freely practice our faith, or do any of the things we are entitled to as human beings. God bless you and your families.

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini

(1850-1917) She was the youngest of thirteen children, and when she was orphaned, she decided to follow religious life. She was first invited to take over an orphanage that was being poorly managed, but when it was closed, she was invited by the bishop of Todi, Italy to found an institution. She moved into an abandoned Franciscan friary with seven others and founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart, which was dedicated to educating girls. Later, Frances went to New York to work with Italian immigrants. After much travel, her congregation spread all over the U.S., Italy, South and Central America, and England. Final approval was given in 1907 by Rome. She became an American citizen in 1909, and by her death in 1917, there were more than 50 hospitals, schools, orphanages, and others in existence. She was the first American to be canonized, and is the patroness of immigrants.
Photo Credit: Catholic Culture All information from Pocket Dictionary of Saints

Great Post

by Jennie C. It's about her wonderfully full hands. Enjoy.

Monday, November 12, 2007

My Little Rosary

As I said before, I have a problem with patience. I offered my mass up for it yesterday, as I shamelessly begged for graces ;-) . This morning, during my morning prayer, another opportunity arose for me to practice, and ask, for patience. I won't go into details, as it really is petty. Very, very petty.

But, thanks be to God, I remembered that I needed to pray for patience when the occasion presented itself. I also remembered my mother-in-law telling me once that a priest told her that he prays a "little rosary" when he needed a boost. This little rosary consists of one Our Father, three Hail Mary's, and a Glory Be. So I decided to give it a try. By the first Hail Mary, I had realized that my annoyance really was petty, and by voicing it I would just be trying to start an argument, or at the very least make someone feel really bad. By the second Hail Mary, I didn't want to voice it anymore. And by the third Hail Mary, I actually felt better and more peaceful than I did before this particular annoyance. After I said the Glory Be, I was able to get on with things and truly I was not annoyed anymore.

My new resolve is to say my little Rosary whenever I feel that sting of patience being lost. I am going to refuse to even speak until after the Glory Be, even if that means I have to leave the room for a few seconds.

I told you before that my spiritual director had asked me what virtue I wanted to work on. At our meeting last month, he gave me ideas to help me in this task. Saying a daily rosary was one of them, proclaiming my faith openly (by wearing a crucifix or by some other way) was another, and joyfully serving people and my family especially was the third. It's almost time for my next meeting with him (tomorrow) and I think I have finally reached my starting point.

So what do you do to keep those little things from ruining your day?

St. Josaphat

Wow! What a saint! Learning about the lives of saints is so interesting. They really help us put our own troubles in perspective.
(c. 1580-1623) St. Josaphat was the first eastern saint to be formally canonized. He was ordained a priest of the Byzantine rite and became an advocate for the union of the Ukrainian Church with Rome. He became bishop of Vitebsk, Russia. The diocese was a mess. Clergy were marrying, there was widespread opposition to Rome, ect. He put reforms into effect which were unpopular among certain groups. The archbishop of Polotsk claimed the Josaphat was a Latin priest and said Roman Catholicism was not for the Ruthenians. Riots broke out and people began to choose sides.
Josaphat was wrongly accused of causing trouble, and so he went to meet the
Photo Credit: Catholic Culture
opposition despite threats against him. One priest named Elias, who had harassed Josaphat numerous times was jailed. Protesters demanded Elias' release, and even though Josaphat complied, he was beaten and shot to death, and his body was thrown in the river.
All information from Pocket Dictionary of Saints

Sunday, November 11, 2007

On Patience

I am not a patient person. Actually, when my spiritual director asked me to go home and think of a virtue I wanted to work on, it only took a minute of thought before I knew I needed to work on patience. It's strange actually. I can be very patient when I'm dealing with a large issue, like when you can tell someone really didn't want to tell you something, but they needed to, so they did. You know the what happens. A person comes to you, and you can tell they are very nervous to tell you whatever it is. Yeah, I can be very patient then.

But on everyday little things, I have no patience. Like watching someone on the computer. They are clicking along just fine to get to a particular thing you want to show them, but you know there is a faster way, and...well...they just aren't doing it the way you would do it. Or when...well, anytime someone is not doing something exactly the way you would do it. Even if the way they are doing it is right too. But it's not your way. Hmmm...I wonder if this is the way God thinks about us sometimes. Just a thought.

My dear husband was out working on his truck yesterday. (Don't worry these two things will make sense in a minute). It's a hobby of his. The truck is a '73 Ford we call Oscar, because he's green and kind of grouchy. Where was I? Oh yes...he was working on his truck, trying to get some hose off or something. This particular hose was not coming off easily like he expected, and he could feel himself starting to get frustrated. So he told himself if he hurried the job along, he would have no fun doing it, and it may not turn out as good as it could have. And then he prayed for patience.

When he came in, he told me this story (as he washed his hands and dried them on a towel I wouldn't have used). He said that after he prayed for patience, he calmed down and then the hose came off pretty quickly and he was able to get the job done in a reasonable time, with little stress.

At first, I only gave this story a small thought. Like, "My husband is really a very good man". But this morning, as I was cleaning the counters and DH was off to mass, (Fritter is still sick, so we're going in shifts today) I was saying a little prayer for God to help me be patient today (yesterday was really a bad day). This story came into my head and I realized that it's not just recognizing the opportunities to be patient when they arise. I'm very good at that, it's putting patience into action that's hard. It's also about asking God for help at the moment you need it.

I have always known that we alone can do nothing, but that IN CHRIST we can do anything. We pray for patience, God gives us opportunities to be patient, and then we pray for help to be patient. Why didn't I put these concepts together? Your guess is as good as mine. Maybe it was Wormwood messing with me again. Scary thought.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Pope Leo The Great

Today we celebrate the feast day of Pope Leo the Great, who is considered a doctor of the church. After being succeeding Sixtus III as Pope, he gave a series of ninety-six sermons on faith and charity, and denouncing things such as Manichaeanism. When Italy was invaded by Attila the Hun, Leo met him face-to-face and dissuaded him from attacking. Later, while he was not able to keep the Vandal Genseric from attacking Rome, he was able to persuade him to not burn the city. He worked to rebuild the city and churches and ministered to the people. He also sent missionaries to Africa to minister to the captives of Genseric.

Photo Credit: Catholic Culture

Leo advanced the influence of the papacy to unprecedented heights with his authoritative approach to events, buttressed by his firm belief that the Holy See was the supreme authority in human affairs because of divine and scriptural mandate. In a time of great disorder, he forged an energetic central authority that stood for stability, authority, action, and wisdom; his pontificate was to affect the concept of the papacy for centuries to come.

All information from John J. Delaney's Pocket Dictionary of Saints.

Friday, November 9, 2007


Your Blog Should Be Purple

You're an expressive, offbeat blogger who tends to write about anything and everything.
You tend to set blogging trends, and you're the most likely to write your own meme or survey.
You are a bit distant though. Your blog is all about you - not what anyone else has to say.
Well, it is isn't it?

Pictures will be...

forthcoming. Probably tomorrow. Here's why:

Yesterday, Fritter woke up from his morning nap at noon. When I went in to get him, he felt very warm, so I took his temperature. Under arm it was 99! (You add a degree when it's underarm, so his body temperature was 100. I will speak in terms of underarm temperature.) I gave him some baby Tylenol, but at 1pm his temperature was 100. I continued to monitor him, and gave him Tylenol every 4 hours. I tried a cool bath, a cool compress, turned the air conditioner up, everything. Nothing seemed to work, and by 2pm he was at 101. Also, he refused to eat or drink anything, except to nurse. Did I mention he was stuffy?

I called the doctor, and after much hassle, (because no one lets you just talk to a doctor anymore, you have to leave a message for a nurse to call you back) I was told to just keep an eye on him. But, by 9pm his temperature had gone up to 102. My son is rarely sick, and this was his first time ever having a temperature this high. Suffice it to say I was very, very nervous. I called the doctor again, and this time the nurse called me right back. She told me to try some Motrin, and if that still didn't work, I would need to take him in tonight. So my dear husband went to the store and after giving Fritter a dose, we put him to bed. He really had a rough time sleeping, but when I checked on him at midnight, his fever had finally broke, and his temperature was normal. Thanks be to God!

So, back to Fritter's birthday celebration. There wasn't much of one. I made a very cute cake (at least I think so) and "he" opened some of his gifts. He tried to eat some of the cake, and did a very good job of making a mess (I think that's the point). He also had his first taste of ice cream, but it wasn't a very fun birthday for him. He seems to be feeling better today though, so I think we will try again this evening.

Dedication of the St. John Lateran Basilica in Rome

This basilica was dedicated by Pope St. Silvester in 324. It is the Pope's church and is considered, "the mother and mistress of all churches of Rome and the world." This feast is a sign of love and union with the See of Peter. Information taken from Catholic Culture. To learn more about this feast or the Basilica go here.

For more pictures visit Architecture for Kids, a Catholic site.

Photo Credit: Catholic Culture

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Happy Birthday...

Dear Fritter, Happy Birthday to you!!!

Yes, today is Fritter's First Birthday! I cannot believe it. How can my little, sleepy baby be the same person as my big, smiling little man? The year has gone so fast, and had so many changes. From both DH and I graduating college, to moving to Arizona, to becoming pregnant again, to having a miscarriage, and now to my little boy turning 1.

I plan on making a ducky themed party for him today, because he knows what that is. He says, "Dee-dee". We are going to a party store after his morning nap to pick out a couple of mylar balloons, and some other little decorations. It will just be us three celebrating his birthday with him today, as we don't yet have any close friends, but that doesn't make it any less special. There will still be birthday cake, and ice cream, and presents, and decorations.

I will update you tomorrow on how things went, and of course there will be pictures. God bless, and have a great day!

Monday, November 5, 2007

I don't have a whole lot to say...

except that I am sick. After pushing myself to the limit for the past couple of days, I've had it. Or, at least my immune system has. Yesterday, I was exhausted all day, and in between naps caught here and there, I mildly wondered why. DUH! I've been staying up late to finish Anne of the Island, and getting up very early (4 am today) to make sure DH gets a good breakfast and some company before he goes off to the daily grind.

I awoke this morning with a sore throat, and again have been exhausted all day. DH is out of town on business until tomorrow morning, and I finished my book yesterday. No excuses. I am going to bed early. I even put Fritter to bed early, and so far all seems good. Now for some yummy tea with honey in it, and then I am curling up on the couch to work a little on my cross-stitching, and wait for my Hubby to call. And then it's off to bed with me.

Have a blessed evening!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Little Boy Needs Prayers

Today I was supposed to go to a class so I can be officially volunteering for a class I am teaching at our parish. It is the Call to Protect for Ministries. I have been trying to make it to this class for a month now, but our schedules have been so crazy that I haven't had the chance. Well, I signed up last week for it for today thinking I should have no problem. First, DH had a class he had to go to this morning, and I didn't realize that until a couple of days ago. Still, his class met from 7-8:30 and mine met from 9:30-12:30, so counting driving time I should have been able to make it.

On my way to the class this morning, traffic started getting a little bit backed up, but I could tell that I was towards the beginning of whatever it was the started the back-up, so I figured I would be out of it soon. As I drove past what looked to be a wreck, I saw a small figure laying in the middle of the road. I realized it was a little boy about 12 years old! Because the police were not yet there, I pulled over, and as I walked to the scene, I called 911. One man had gotten there right before me, and thankfully seemed to know what he was doing. He checked the little boys pulse and his breathing, and was talking to him, but the little boy was completely unconscious, and was not talking back. His pulse and breathing were both strong though, Thanks be to God!

The ambulance and police pulled up right about that time and carted him away to the hospital. But no one knew where the little boy's parents were. Apparently, he had been crossing the very busy road with some of his friends when he was hit by a car. Now, this particular roads speed limit happens to be 45, with most drivers going quite a bit faster. They (the boys) had crossed the road when the light was red to them when he was hit. His friends ran away, hopefully to go get his parents, but I don't know that for sure.

Needless to say, I did not make it to class and will just have to find another maybe next weekend. Please keep this little boy in your prayers, and also his parents and the girl who was driving the car (who happened to be a teenager).

Sorry this is written so straight forward and factual. I am still sorting it out in my head and the facts are the only things that seem real right now.

Coffee Braid

I did end up making this bread on All Saints Day. It was a hit! It turned out very well, and even looks pretty. I have never made bread before, so I am a little proud. OK, a lot proud ;-)

Isn't it pretty? I did not have course sugar on hand, or sliced almonds, so I substituted powdered sugar and walnuts. I think either way it would be very good. DH has even talked me into making it when we go to his parents' house for Christmas. We'll see what happens to it at high altitude.

St. Martin De Porres

In my effort to learn more about the saints, I am going to post a small amount of information on each one during their feast day. OK, maybe not all of them, just the feast days that are on my wonderful calendar. Does your parish offer these?

So, today is the feast day of St. Martin De Porres. Information is from the Pocket Dictionary of Saints.

Photo Credit: Catholic Online
(1579-1639). Born at Lima, Peru, on November 9, he was the illegitimate son of John de Porres, a Spanish knight, and Anna, a freed Panamanian. He was apprenticed to a barber-surgeon when he was twelve and in 1594 became a Dominican lay brother at Rosary Convent in Lima. He served in various offices in the convent--barber, infirmarian, wardrobe keeper--and was active in caring for the sick throughout the city. He founded an orphanage and foundling hospital, was put in charge of the convent's food distribution to the poor, and ministered to African slaves brought to Peru. A close friend of St. Rose of Lima, his prodigious efforts to help the poor and his holiness and penances caused him to be venerated by all. He is reputed to have been gifted with supernatural gifts, among them bilocation and aerial flights. He died at Rosary Convent on November 3, and was canonized in 1962 by Pope John XXIII. He is the patron of interracial justice. --John J. Delaney

Friday, November 2, 2007

The Advent Group New Movie

Check out the trailer for a new film from The Advent Group, a Catholic film company. It's a pro-life movie about Roe v. Wade.
Hat tip to Colleen Hammond.

Feast of All Souls

"On this day is observed the commemoration of the faithful departed, in which our common and pious Mother the Church, immediately after having endeavored to celebrate by worthy praise all her children who already rejoice in heaven, strives to aid by her powerful intercession with Christ, her Lord and Spouse, all those who still groan in Purgatory, so that they may join as soon as possible the inhabitants of the heavenly city." — Roman Martyrology (Taken from Catholic Culture)
Find out more to do today at Catholic Culture
Photo Credit: Catholic Culture

Just a Good Mass

Last evening we went to mass at the same church where we experience our first Tridentine Mass. This was an English Mass, which was good, because we have decided to stick with our English Mass that we are attached to,and then go to the Tridentine Mass once a month or so. What we have been wanting is for whichever Mass we go to to be reverent. I don't want to go where there is a rock band playing in front of the Tabernacle. So we decided to try out this church's English Mass. Logic told us that if they did a Tridentine Mass, their other Masses would be reverent as well. We were right. This Mass had everything we wanted. Traditional hymns with a real organ playing up in the choir loft along with the choir singing up in the loft. The pews were all facing forward, pulling our attention to the altar. The priest was reverent, and he told a great homily with just a small amount of humor to lock your attention while keeping it full of meaning and insight. And during the closing hymn, only a couple of people left before it was over. Overall, it was a very good Mass.

Funny story though, when we first sat down, Fritter looked behind us where there were sitting a couple of kids. He squealed at them!! Loudly! For much of the Mass he kept wanting to look behind us and "talk" to the kids. DH and I were doing our best to keep him quiet and facing forward, and though it was a trail, we were pretty successful. But I'm sure you know how it is. You feel like everyone behind is staring at you and your son. This is how we felt, when, during the Sign of Peace, the nice lady behind us said, "Your little boy is so darling! I just love watching him." Yep, she did. Good Mass.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Solemnity of All Saints

During the year the Church celebrates one by one the feasts of the saints. Today she joins them all in one festival. In addition to those whose names she knows, she recalls in a magnificent vision all the others "of all nations and tribes standing before the throne and in sight of the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands, proclaiming Him who redeemed them in His Blood." The feast of All Saints should inspire us with tremendous hope. Among the saints in heaven are some whom we have known. All lived on earth lives like our own. They were baptized, marked with the sign of faith, they were faithful to Christ's teaching and they have gone before us to the heavenly home whence they call on us to follow them. The Gospel of the Beatitudes, read today, while it shows their happiness,
shows, too, the road that they followed; there is no other that will lead us whither they have gone. --Catholic Culture
Photo Credit: Catholic Culture

All Hallow's Eve

Last evening we did not have even one trick-or-treater!! That's what we get for living on the third floor of an apartment building, right? What am I going to do with two bags of Halloween candy? *big sheepish grin*

Fritter played in his costume after dinner, and we had a quiet evening at home. It was nice. He's a little too young to go trick-or-treating yet (he can't even eat candy yet!).

This evening we are going to mass and I am going to do a little reading up on the saints. As a convert, I have had limited exposure to the lives of these great people, so today it seems appropriate to learn more.

Looking for ideas to do today? Check out Catholic Culture. They list a host of things to do with your family throughout the Liturgical Year. My favorite has to be going to the cemetery to pray for the dead. Did you know that you gain a plenary indulgence that is applied to the souls in purgatory? Another good thing to do would be to pray the Litany of Saints during family prayer time. We will be adding this to our family decade this evening. I may even try this recipe for Coffee Braid. We'll see, I kind of feel bakey today. :)

So how was your Hallowe'en? What traditions do you do with your family for All Hallow's Eve, All Saint's Day, and All Souls Day?

Catholic Mothers Online

Yeah!! I have officially been added to the Catholic Mothers Online blogroll. Check out all the other wonderful Catholic Mothers sites on the blogroll on my side-bar. Are you a member yet?