Sunday, December 8, 2013

Kindness Elf

After reading this wonderful post over at The Imagination Tree I decided that I'm going to incorporate some of the ideas in my classroom this week!  I've got my elf all ready--he's an old ornament from my childhood tucked into a vase of holly.  Isn't he cute?

If all goes according to plan, he'll be in the classroom when we return from Mass on Thursday, complete with a letter to the children about acts of kindness and a plate of homemade cookies!  Once I compose the letter I'll post it here for you to see.  (DH will be the actual scribe--a left-handed male handwriting will look sufficiently different from mine and from our classroom teacher to hopefully keep the children guessing!)

And later today DH will be putting up the 2nd Advent candle in the tomorrow!

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Frugal Advent Wreath

I just finished making my Advent wreath!  And other than the purchase of new candles, it's a freebie!  My budget is so tight this year that there just isn't money to spend on anything that isn't really a necessity.  But I'm thrilled with what I was able to put together from items I already have in the house, with the exception of the candles (which I need every year).   I'm really happy with the way it turned out.

I'll be deconstructing it in a few minutes so that I can take the candles with me to Mass this morning to have them blessed, but when I get home I'll put it right back together again AND I'll change out the table runner to an Advent-appropriate one.  Step-by-step photos of the wreath-making process later today!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Novena to the Immaculate Conception

Today may be Black Friday for some (oh, how I dreaded this day when I worked in retail!) but for me, it's the first day of the Novena to the Immaculate Conception.

Need the prayers?  Hop over to PRAY MORE NOVENAS and you'll find everything you need, including a convenient sign-up so that you can have the prayers emailed to you each day.  And no worry, they won't start spamming you if you sign up!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Day 28

I'm thankful for so much--but honestly, right now I'm thankful that I didn't overeat today!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Day 27

Today I'm thankful for "Friendsgiving".  Spent the day with my DH, and my dear friends Liz, Mike, and Connie.  We had a great lunch, and a great time visiting with each other.  It's such a treat to have some extra time to spend with them.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Day 26

Today I'm grateful that I could find this adjustable roasting rack!  It's almost exactly like the one my mother had (hers wasn't non-stick, of course) and it's just the thing I'll need when I try to make the bacon-wrapped turkey breast later this week!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Day 25

Today I'm thankful for all the cleaning/decluttering/organizing that I accomplished in my kitchen!  Just looking at it makes me smile!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Day 24

I'm thankful for a quiet and peaceful day spent with my husband...

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Day 23

Today I'm grateful for seeing a new low when I stepped on the scale at my Weight Watchers meeting!  But what I'm really grateful for is the help and companionship of the 7:15 Saturday morning Weight Watchers bunch...I don't know that I would still be getting up, going to the meetings, and working the program without them!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Day 22

Today I am thankful for the start of a week-long vacation from work!  Time to get some housework done!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Day 21

I'm thankful that Paul and I were able to see "Mary of Nazareth" tonight!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Day 20

Today I'm thankful for the infectious joy of the little children that I am surrounded by each day!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Day 19

I'm grateful to have a job.  In today's economy so many people don't have work, so having a job I enjoy is truly a blessing!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Day 18

I'm thankful for this:

Thank you, Caden.  I'll always be thankful that you've come into my life.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Day 17

I'm thankful for the chance to go to the swimming pool and visit with my dear friend Liz.  We don't get to see each other or talk to each other as often as we once did, so these once-a-week visits are a real blessing in my life!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Day 16

I am thankful for a beautiful day spend with my husband and 600 our closest friends out walking to raise money for--and awareness of--the Women's New Life Center!

I survived the 5k!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Day 15

I'm thankful for Mr. Taco--no cooking tonight!  Seriously, I'm actually thankful that I have enough to eat when here are so many people going hungry tonight.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Day 14

I'm grateful for the wonderful teacher that I work with.  She's young and vibrant, and such a joy to be around!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Day 13

Today I'm grateful for my friends.  They truly are a gift from God, and were there to help me find my way back home after so many years away from the church.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Day 12

Today I am thankful for the house I live in.  It isn't large, or fancy, or particularly special--but it keeps us warm in the winter, dry when it's raining, and safe when we are inside its walls.  And I am enjoying the process of turning this house into a home!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Day 11

Today I am thankful for my students.  They make me laugh, they make me want to cry, they bring me such joy and happiness...

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Day 10

I'm grateful for the quiet mornings--I'm always the first one up in the house so I have an hour or so each day to spend quietly reflecting on my life and the day ahead.  No television, no radio, just the quiet hum of the refrigerator, the sound of the birds waking up, and my thoughts to keep me company.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Day 9

I'm thankful for a productive day at home, reorganizing my china storage and freeing up storage space in my kitchen.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Day 8

Today I am thankful for the financial difficulties that we are currently experiencing.  I know that it might seem funny to many of you to read this, but honestly, I am.  While they are stressful (oh, am I stressed!) I have been blessed recently to see how much I have contributed to those difficulties in different ways--some of which are completely unexpected, and have nothing to do with spending!  I know that this insight will help me become a better person, a better wife, a better Catholic--and isn't that something to be thankful for?

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Day 7

Today I'm thankful for Sr. Dulce Maria, especially for the peace and comfort she has brought to my cousin Nancy as she battles stage 4 cancer.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Day 6

Today I'm thankful for the early morning sunlight that illuminates my walk to work.  It's such a great way to start my day--walking in the sunshine, listening to the sounds of the birds and insects that are just waking up.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Day 5

I'm thankful for my job as a 1st grade teacher's aide.  I absolutely love it--love being around the kids, love the teacher I work with, love the school.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Day 4

I am thankful for my husband, who continues to love me even when I fall far short of the example of a good wife in Proverbs 31!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Day 3

For the big pot of vegetable soup simmering on the stove right now, which will provide my family with nourishment of both mind and spirit during the coming week.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Day 2

This morning I am thankful for the beautiful star-filled sky that I see while on my way to my weekly Weight Watchers meeting!

He numbers the stars, and gives to all of them their names.  Ps. 147:4

Friday, November 1, 2013

Day 1

Today I am thankful for my parents, who are no longer with me, but who passed on the incredible gift of the Catholic faith to me.  I was raised in a home that was openly Catholic, by parents who were committed, faithful, and open about practicing their faith in all aspects of their lives.  What a wonderful example they set for me!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

The prayer of the Church

I've been feeling more and more of a pull to begin praying--at least in part--the Liturgy of the Hours.  Over and over I would consider purchasing a copy of Christian Prayer, or even the 4-volume Liturgy of the Hours set (both from Catholic Book Company) but somehow it just never quite happened.

On Sunday I went to evening Mass at a neighboring parish--and what was the subject of the sermon?  Learning to pray the Liturgy of the Hours!  Fr. Gyan even offered to make an appointment with any of us who wanted to learn this important part of Catholic prayer life.

That's all it took.  I decided then and there that I was going to learn to pray this official prayer of the Church.  And I made plans to get myself over to the local Catholic book store this weekend to purchase either a copy of Christian Prayer, or the first volume of the 4-volume set.

But a funny thing happened....I started searching for information about reading the Breviary the other night and I discovered that the version of the Breviary that I really want--the one that's the easiest to use, and contains the most up-to-date translations, etc.,. isn't available here!

So I'm off to Kenya to order a copy!  OK, I'm not really going to Kenya, but I have contacted the Daughters of St. Paul to order a copy of their version of the single-volume Breviary "The Prayer of the Church."  I'm also ordering a copy of an abbreviated version of the LOTH from them--called "Christian Prayer" it contains the texts for morning, evening, and night prayer.

I'm hoping to have them in time for the first day of Advent.  What a wonderful way to start the new liturgical year!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Novena to St. Monica starts today!

If you are like me, then there's someone you care about who has left the Catholic church--and you really, really, really want them to come home!    Or there's someone you love who hasn't converted yet.  Who can understand your pain and longing better than St. Monica, who spent 18 years praying for the conversion of her son!  It took quite a while, but look at how she was rewarded for her faithfulness!

Today is the first day of the Novena to St. Monica, and thanks to the lovely young couple at PRAY MORE NOVENAS we have the novena prayers.  If you haven't visited PRAY MORE NOVENAS and signed up to be notified of the monthly novena, please hurry over there and get signed up!

Here are the prayers for today:

Dear Saint Monica, you were once the mournful mother of a prodigal son. Your faithfulness to prayer brought you and your son so close to God that you are now with him in eternity. By your intercession and God’s grace, your son St. Augustine became a great and venerable Saint of the Church. Please take my request to God with the same fervor and persistence with which you prayed for your own son.
(Mention your intentions here)
With your needs, worries and anxieties, you threw yourself on the mercy and providence of God. Through sorrow and pain, you constantly devoted yourself to God. Pray for me that I might join you in such a deep faith in God’s goodness and mercy.
Above all, dear Saint Monica, pray for me that I may, like your son, turn from my sin and become a great saint for the glory of God.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

First day of school!

Here's our theme for the year.  

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

God still answers prayers!

And sometimes you get the answer as a complete surprise!  Today was one of those days.

Several years ago I managed a child care center.  One day I overheard a conversation between one of the mothers and the owner.  The mother had just had another miscarriage.  It seemed that she didn't have trouble getting pregnant, she just had trouble staying pregnant.

When I left that job I never thought I would see her again, but periodically I would think of her and pray that wherever she was, she had managed to get pregnant again and that she had managed to carry the baby to term.

In my new job as a 1st grade teacher's assistant I was pleasantly surprised to see the name of her son on my class roster.  At the open house this afternoon I saw her, and she told me that she now has a daughter who is a year old!

I couldn't help but start to cry, and then I confided in her how I had been praying for her over these years, even though I never expected to see her again.  And how happy I was to know that those prayers had been answered!

God is good.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Another Catholic symbol for my home

While shopping at one of our local thrift stores I found this beautiful copper mold.  My mother always had a few copper molds hanging on the wall of her kitchen when I was growing up, so they invoke wonderful memories for me.  At less than $2, I knew I wanted it.  Alas, I had no cash with me.

I went back this week and the mold was still there!  Armed with some $$$ this time I brought it home with me.  It's soon going to be polished up and hanging in my kitchen to remind me of one of my goals in life--to make a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela.

The shell-shape is the same shape as the shells the pilgrims wear.  I may never walk El Camino de Santiago, but I can be reminded that all of life is a pilgrimage each day when I see this shell in my kitchen.

Well worth the $2, don't you think?

Saturday, July 27, 2013

A special Mass

One of our neighboring parishes held a special vigil Mass this evening in honor of the 45th anniversary of Pope Paul VI's encyclical "Humane Vitae".  The Mass was so well attended--it was packed, standing-room only!

Fr. Jerry Martin gave a beautiful sermon on the truth about the Church's teaching on artificial contraception, and the reasons for the teaching.  I'm going to write him a note tomorrow thanking him for such a truthful, and moving, sermon.

If only more priests would preach (and preach well!) on the beauty of what was contained in Humana different our world today might be.

Pope Paul VI was a prophet.  He foresaw so much of what we've experienced a culture, and he warned against it in his encyclical.  If only we had listened...

Friday, July 26, 2013

My rosary arrived!

When the mail arrived there was a little white box, addressed to me, from Real Life Rosary!  The rosary I won in one of their recent Facebook contests is here!   Isn't the rosary beautiful?

Thanks again, Hahn Family, for the lovely rosary!

Want one like this?  Check out!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Most Blessed Sacrament, here I come!

I'm so excited--today I went and picked up some of the paperwork I need in order to start my new job.  What?  New job?

Yes!  On August 1st I will begin working at Most Blessed Sacrament School as an teacher's assistant for the 1st grade and also as the director of the Extended Care program.

I'm so excited!  As a product of parochial education (K-12 at Cathedral School in Natchez, MS) I know the real value of a Catholic education, and I'm proud to be helping to pass that on to another generation.

One of the pieces of artwork displayed in the MBS courtyard.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

One of my treasures

When my parents died, and my siblings and I closed up their home, we each took what we wanted from the house.  We were lucky--there were very few things that more than one of us wanted, and it seemed that when there was an item several of us wanted to have we were able to resolve the matter quite easily.  After all, this was just 'stuff' we were dividing up, and we all had plenty of wonderful memories--memories that were far more valuable than the 'stuff'.

One of the pieces that I chose to take is this vase.  I'm not sure when my mother got it--either for Mother's Day one year, or maybe when one of us was born.  My dad was a florist's dream customer--he sent flowers for their anniversary, Easter, Mother's Day, her birthday, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  Not to mention the birth of each of their 5 children.  And not just arrangements for the house--there were the corsages for her and the 3 girls, too, on Easter, Mother's Day, and Christmas.

Back in the day you often saw vases in the florist's shop with a Marian theme.  So this wouldn't have been a very uncommon vase for my mother to have received.  It found a place in her home, on the pie safe she had inherited from her mother--it had come from the family plantation--and it was there for as long as I remember.

The vase has been displayed several places in my home.  It's been on the window ledge over the kitchen sink, on the entertainment unit in the living room, and it's currently on top of the television in our bedroom  Every time I look at it I am reminded of my mother, and her great devotion to the Blessed Mother.  And it reminds me that they are both watching over me, guiding me, and helping me to become the woman God intended me to be.

What about you?  Do you have any special family treasures of religious significance?  If so, I'd love to hear about them!

Monday, July 22, 2013

I won a rosary!

Yep, I won a rosary today!  The wonderful folks over at Real Life Rosary had one of their little weekend contests last weekend and--this morning I received an email from Jim telling me that I had won a rosary in my choice of color.  So I picked Blessed Blue.

What a way to start a Monday morning!

(I'm joining Jen over at Conversion Diary in her 7 posts in 7 days challenge.  That might explain this short post!)

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

St. Anne Novena starts today!

Today is the first day of the St. Anne novena.  If you hurry over to Pray More Novenas you can join in!  And while you're there go ahead and sign up to be reminded of future novenas as they come up.  It's an easy way to add a little something extra to your prayer life.

I promise you won't get SPAM rushing into your mailbox--just notifications of upcoming novenas, and the novena prayers each day.

I have no official connection to the website, I just use their service and have found it to be very helpful.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Prayers of thanksgiving

In addition to praying for all of your intentions I've been praying for a few of my own.  One has been to find a new job because of changes at the current job that have made me unhappy.  Well--today I got word that I've gotten the job!

I'm so thankful--and I hope it serves as a reminder to us all that GOD PROVIDES!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Watch the weather today!

Today is St. Swithin's day, and tradition claims that if it rains today it will continue to rain for 40 (!) more days.

Saint Swithin's Day, if thou dost rain, for forty days it will remain; 
Saint Swithin's Day, if thou be fair, for forty days 'twill rain nae mair.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Your prayers, please

Today I come to ask for your prayers, dear readers.  A young friend of mine called me this afternoon to let me know that she and her significant other are separating.  There's a 6 month old baby involved--and we all know that a baby needs a mother AND a father.  I had been praying that with time mommy and daddy would find their way to the altar...

So please pray for little Anthony and his family.  

You continue to be in my prayers, including my daily rosary and Divine Mercy chaplet.

Saturday, July 13, 2013

St. Thomas More novena

I have a friend who is sitting for the Louisiana BAR beginning on Monday, July 22, so today I started a novena to St. Thomas More for the intention of her passing the BAR exam.  In case any of you have a friend or loved one who will be sitting for the BAR soon, or (if me) you just know way too many lawyers, here are the novena prayers, courtesy of the V-for-Victory blog.

Of course, I'll still be offering my daily rosary and Divine Mercy chaplet for YOUR intentions!

Novena to St. Thomas More

First Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of prudence. You never thrust yourself rashly into any serious undertaking; instead, you tested the strength of your powers and waited on God's will in prayer and penance, then boldly carried it out without hesitation. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the virtues of patience, prudence, wisdom and courage. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be...

Glorious St. Thomas More, I beg you to take up my cause, confident that you will advocate for me before God's Throne with the same zeal and diligence that marked your career on earth. If it be in accord with God's will, obtain for me the favor I seek, namely _______.

V. Pray for us, O Blessed St. Thomas More.
R. That we may faithfully follow you on the hard road that leads to the narrow gate of eternal life.

Second Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of diligence. You shunned procrastination, applied yourself with fervor to your studies, and spared no effort in achieving mastery in any skill. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the virtue of diligence and persistence in my preparations for all undertakings. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Third Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of industriousness. You threw yourself wholeheartedly into everything you did, and you found enjoyment even in the most serious things. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace of always having suitable employment, the grace to find interest in everything fitting, and the fortitude always to pursue excellence in whatever task God gives me to do. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Fourth Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a brilliant lawyer and a just and compassionate judge. You attended to the smallest details of your legal duties with the greatest care, and you were unflagging in your pursuit of justice tempered by mercy. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace to overcome every temptation to laxity, arrogance, and rash judgment in my (legal) duties. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Fifth Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of humility. You never allowed pride to lead you to take on enterprises beyond your abilities; even in the midst of earthly wealth and honor, you never forgot your total dependence on your Heavenly Father. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace of an increase in humility, and the wisdom not to overestimate my own powers. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Sixth Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model husband and father. You were loving and faithful to both of your wives, and a diligent provider and example of virtue for your children. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace of a happy home, peace in my family, and the strength to persevere in chastity according to my state of life. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Seventh Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a model of Christian fortitude. You suffered bereavement, disgrace, poverty, imprisonment and a violent death; yet you bore all with the strength and good cheer for which you were known throughout your life. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me the grace to bear all the crosses that God sends me with patience and joy. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Eighth Day

Dear St. Thomas More, in your earthly life, you were a loyal child of God and a steadfast son of the Church, never taking your eyes off the crown for which you strove. Even in the face of death, you trusted in God to give you the victory, and He rewarded you with the palm of martyrdom. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for me and mine the grace of final perseverance and protection from sudden and unprovided death, so that we may one day enjoy the Beatific Vision in your glorious company. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Ninth Day

Dear St. Thomas More, you spent your whole earthly life preparing for the life to come. Everything you endured prepared you not only for the glory God wished to bestow upon you in heaven, but for your work as the patron of lawyers, judges and statesmen, and steadfast friend to all who call upon you. Through your prayers and intercession, obtain for us aid in all our necessities, both corporal and spiritual, and the grace to follow in your footsteps, until at last we are safely home with you in the mansions our Father has prepared for us in heaven. Our Father... Hail Mary... Glory Be... Glorious St. Thomas More...

Litany of St. Thomas More, 
Martyr and Patron Saint of Statesmen, Politicians and Lawyers

V. Lord, have mercy
R. Lord have mercy
V. Christ, have mercy
R. Christ have mercy
V. Lord, have mercy
R. Lord have mercy
V. Christ hear us
R. Christ, graciously hear us 

V. St. Thomas More, Saint and Martyr, 
R. Pray for us (Repeat after each invocation)
St. Thomas More, Patron of Statesmen, Politicians and Lawyers
St. Thomas More, Patron of Justices, Judges and Magistrates
St. Thomas More, Model of Integrity and Virtue in Public and Private Life
St. Thomas More, Servant of the Word of God and the Body and Blood of Christ
St. Thomas More, Model of Holiness in the Sacrament of Marriage 
St. Thomas More, Teacher of his Children in the Catholic Faith
St. Thomas More, Defender of the Weak and the Poor
St. Thomas More, Promoter of Human Life and Dignity

V. Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world
R. Spare us O Lord
V. Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world
R. Graciously hear us O Lord
V. Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world
R. Have mercy on us

Let us pray: 

O Glorious St. Thomas More, Patron of Statesmen, Politicians, Judges and Lawyers, your life of prayer and penance and your zeal for justice, integrity and firm principle in public and family life led you to the path of martyrdom and sainthood.  Intercede for our Statesmen, Politicians, Judges and Lawyers, that they may be courageous and effective in their defense and promotion of the sanctity of human life - the foundation of all other human rights. We ask this through Christ our Lord. 

R. Amen.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Because it's Friday

Because it's Friday I've added the 7 Sorrows Rosary to my prayers for today.  Several years ago I was fortunate enough to be able to attend one of Immaculee's retreats in Lafayette, Louisiana.  It was a life-changing experience and I certainly encourage anyone to attend her future retreats.  I hope to attend another one someday!

The rosary pictured below is my 7 Sorrows Rosary, one that I have had for years.  You see, before I ever heard of Immaculee, or Kibeho, or Our Lady of the Word, I received a 7 Sorrows Rosary in the mail as a fund-raising appeal (I think from the Servites, but I can't really remember...) and for some reason I hung on to it and managed not to lose it.  When my sister-in-law Charlotte gave me Immaculee's book on Our Lady of Kibeho for Christmas several years ago I went hunting for this rosary and (this really should qualify as a miracle) I found it!

So on Tuesdays and Fridays I'll be praying one of these for your intentions, also.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Today's Rosary

This is the rosary I used to pray for your intentions today.  It's one (of many) that I have purchased from Real Life Rosary and the color is Guadalupe.  (I have no connection with the company, I'm just a happy customer!)

May God bless you and yours!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

it's been too long...

It's been way too long since I posted here.  In order to rectify this problem, I've decided to make this the official log of my 'DAILY ROSARY and DIVINE MERCY CHAPLET'  and to ask that you feel free to email me with any intentions that you would like me to include in my daily prayers.  I've set up a special gmail account just for your intentions, so that they don't get lost in my general account.

Please send your prayer requests to:

Thank you, and God bless each of you.  I'm off to say today's Rosary and Chaplet now.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

waiting for white smoke

What to know ASAP when the white smoke rises?  Consider signing up at to get an email, text, or both as soon as the white smoke appears!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

A time for prayer

(image from

Thursday, February 28, 2013

The See is vacant

Image from the webpage of the Vatican City-State