Saturday, January 30, 2010

All Life is Precious

Watch this amazing story of a precious and amazing life and an incredible father.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Precious Pictures

I am so excited to share these wonderful photos my dear friend Julie of J. Rae Photography took of Sweet Pea and our family to capture her precious newborn days. This first one is my favorite picture of me with one of our children ever.

Feast of Saint Thomas Aquinas

January 28th is the feast of Saint Thomas Aquinas, a priest and Doctor of the Church. He has the title of "Angelic Doctor" because he was both an innocent soul and brilliant theologian. Saint Thomas Aquinas' "most important work, the "Summa Theologica," an explanation and summary of the entire body of Catholic teaching, has been standard for centuries, even to our own day. At the Council of Trent it was consulted after the Bible." from Catholic Culture. He is the patron saint of academics, learning, and Catholic schools. Here are some ideas to celebrate this feast day.
Prayer
Pray the this prayer for Catholic schools and Catholic education
Prayer to St. Thomas Aquinas for Schools Saint Thomas Aquinas, you are called by Holy Mother Church, the Angel of the Schools. Your wisdom, gathered through long meditation from the source of all wisdom, the most holy Trinity, has long been a shining light in the Catholic Church. Ignorance of the things of God is a darkness now enveloping the minds of many of our countrymen. In this darkness, we need an angel like you who will protect, foster, and nourish the schools we have, and guide and strengthen us in establishing and building newer and more adequate schools for the instruction of our children in the ways of Christ. Help and bless the generous sisters, brothers, and priests who labor so unselfishly in the classroom to spread the knowledge of Christ. Inspire our Catholic men and women to be most generous in the support of the schools we have. Grant to parents the wise generosity they need to give their child back to God when that child wishes to follow a priestly or religious vocation. Help us, Saint Thomas, Angel of the Schools, to understand what you taught, and to follow your example.
Amen.
Crafts & Activities
Make ribbon bookmarks in honor of this scholarly saint
Ribbon Bookmarks
Cut ribbon to between 12 to 14 inches long with a v bias cut at one end.
Use a lit match to seal the cut edges of the ribbon to prevent fraying.
Glue buttons of various sizes onto one end of each ribbon.
Leave them out to dry.
Use the bookmark with the edges of each ribbon extending out of the ends of a book.

Food

Among the symbols that represent Saint Thomas Aquinas is the star, so you could make any type of star-shaped food - cookies, brownies, pancakes, even peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Visit Catholic Cuisine for more ideas.

Friday, January 22, 2010

A Baby's Tear

"It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you may live as you wish." ~ Blessed Mother Teresa ~
Please keep all unborn children, their mothers and the over 49 million babies already lost to abortion in your prayers on today's 37th anniversary of Roe v. Wade.
Let us all pray for an end to abortion.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Prayer for those Marching for the Unborn

March for Life Prayer to Our Lady of Guadalupe Our Lady of Guadalupe, we turn to you who are the protectress of unborn children and ask that you intercede for us, so that we may more firmly resolve to join you in protecting all human life. Let our prayers be united to your perpetual motherly intercession
on behalf of those whose lives are threatened, be they in the womb of their mother,
on the bed of infirmity, or in the latter years of their life. May our prayers also be coupled with peaceful action which witnesses
to the goodness and dignity of all human life, so that our firmness of purpose may give courage to those who are fearful
and bring light to those who are blinded by sin. Encourage those who will be involved in the March for Life; help them to walk closely with God and to give voice to the cry of the oppressed, in order to remind our nation of its commitment
to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all people. O Virgin Mother of God, present our petitions to your Son
and ask Him to bless us with abundant life. Amen. (from USCCB)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

One Week Old

"Sweet Pea" is one week old today.
We made her a cake. Very simple of course, box cake, can icing, resulting in entertained children for twenty minutes. And they think I'm great because I let them lick the beaters. That makes me happy because I feel guilty since I have not been able to spend as much time with them this week.
We sang her Happy Birthday.
Here is a favorite picture I caught earlier today. She must have been having a sweet little dream to make her smile so big.
I know I have been absent here this past week, but I wanted to spend every free moment with my little newborn angel. I have some more pictures of her I'll post later, but I will probably be posting infrequently for another week or so. Can you blame me?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

It's a ...

Girl We have been blessed with a beautiful baby girl who arrived yesterday afternoon. January 12, 3:04pm 7lbs, 2oz 20 1/4"
I am not sure what her blog name will be yet.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Still Waiting for Baby...

Here I am this past Friday, 40 weeks along, playing with my kids at a moon bounce play center. No baby yet and apparently bouncing around and sliding down giant inflatable slides just is not enough to encourage labor. I was not trying to induce labor, but I really thought I would have had the baby this past weekend after that morning.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Town Mouse & Country Mouse

Because of Christmas, I have not had a chance to post about the last two weeks of Little Saints activities. Two weeks ago we did the "In the City" theme and the following week was appropriately a "Christmas" theme. Both of these weeks were lighter weeks because of all the activities involved in the holiday preparations.
Books We Read
"In the City" books, so many it took two pictures
Our Christmas book basket. I forgot to take a picture of the Little Saints Christmas books
Jesse Tree Bible readings were a part of our readings for Christmas week too.
Crafts & Activities
Letter to Santa

Trips to the Post Office to mail presents and packages. Pumpkin dropped his letter to Santa into the mail drop box

Christmas Tree Cheerio craft

Candy Cane Reindeer craft Listen to Handel's Messiah For Unto Us A Child is Born

Advent Wreath Prayers and Candle Lighting Listening to and Singing Christmas Carols

Playing with the Fisher Price Nativity Set

Visit with Santa

Yummy Treats

Making Christmas cookies - Chocolate Marshmallow Surprise cookies with candy cane topping

Peppermint Tea & Candy Canes Tea Party

Happy Birthday Jesus!!!!
I have one more week of Little Saints activities to post, but then I am taking a break from Little Saints when the baby comes for a while.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Feast of the Epiphany

The Epiphany of Christ, Raphael Sanzio , 1508, scene 50 of the Raphael Loggia

This year the Feast of the Epiphany will be celebrated on Sunday, January 3rd. The Epiphany is on January 6th but in the US is celebrated on the first Sunday following January 1st. Epiphany, or "twelfth night of Christmas," is traditionally celebrated in honor of Christ's birth, of the adoration of the Magi, and of the baptism of Christ's (also celebrated on the first Sunday following Epiphany), three manifestations of the Lord's divinity.
Prayer
The blessing of the home is a popular Epiphany custom. using specially blessed chalk (your parish priest will bless the chalk, if you ask, or use the prayer of blessing below), many households mark their entrance door with the year and with the inscription CMB, the initial Caspar, Melchior and Balthasar, the names of the three wise man in legend. The inscription also stands for Christus Mansionem Benedicat, which means "Christ, bless this home." The popular form the inscription takes is 20+C+M+B+10. It remains above the doorway until Pentecost.
Blessing of Chalk Let us pray. O Lord God, bless this creature chalk to make it helpful to man. Grant that we who use it with faith and inscribe with it upon the entrance of our homes may enjoy physical health and spiritual protection. Through Christ our Lord. Amen. House Blessing Lord God of Heaven and Earth, who hast revealed thine only-begotten Son to every nation by the guidance of a star: Bless this house and all who inhabit it. Fill them with the light of Christ, that their love for others may truly reflect thy love. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

Read Song of the Camels by Elizabeth Coatsworth We Three Kings by Olga Zharkova The Story of the Three Wise Kings by Tomie dePaola We Three Kings illustrated by Gennady Spirin The Last Straw by Fredrick H. Thury

Activities
• Place the three kings in your nativity set • Exchange gifts – However the exchange of gifts on the solemnity of the Epiphany should retain a Christian character, indicating that its meaning is evangelical: hence the gifts offered should be a genuine expression of popular piety and free from extravagance, luxury, and waste, all of which are extraneous to the Christian origins of this practice. from Catholic Culture • This is a little craft I tweaked from the Little Saints book
Star of Bethlehem Craft
Cut out a star from yellow construction paper, glue onto paper plate, decorate star with silver and gold star foil stickers and rays of light from the star with silver and gold glitter or glitter sticks. Punch hole on top of paper plate and hang with string or ribbon above nativity set.
• Sing We Three Kings
Food
• Make star shaped sugar cookies or pancakes with one big star to represent the one that led the wise men to our Lord • Because the Magi came form the Orient, many of the traditional foods served on this day are spicy. Spice cake is often baked for dessert, and entrees may include curry powder or other pungent spices. • Make Lamb’s Wool Punch as in England, Twelfth Night was traditionally celebrated with a drink called Lamb's Wool, made of cider or ale, with roasted apples and sugar and spices. This Old English and Irish punch, which dates form the Middle Ages, probably gets its name from the wooly appearance of the flesh of the roasted apples floating in the cider.
Lamb's Wool Punch 6 baking apples, cored 2 tablespoons to 1/2 cup brown sugar 2 quarts sweet cider, or hard cider, or ale ­or a mixture of cider and ale 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger Roast the apples in a baking pan at 450 degrees F. for about an hour, or until they are very soft and begin to burst. (An alternative and quicker procedure is to peel and boil the apples until they are very soft and flaky.) You may leave the apples whole, or break them up. In a large saucepan, dissolve the sugar a few tablespoons at a time in the cider or ale, tasting for sweetness. Add the spices. Bring to a boil and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Pour the liquid over the apples in a large punch bowl, or serve in large heat resistant mugs.
• For other food ideas visit Catholic Cuisine

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