Friday, February 26, 2010


Food for Thought from Margaret, hit me right between the eyes this morning. Click on over to read it for yourself.

I think it fits in quite well with my post the other day, don't you? It seems like I'm being drawn to the Cross for further Lenten reflection.

How's your Lent going so far?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

In His Own Sweet Time

I found this prayer on a comment to an old post over at Margaret's. Once again, I couldn't help but see the perfect timing. A simple prayer for me to abide by this season.

"Lord, teach me to be patient-with life, with people, and with myself. I sometimes try to hurry things along too much, and I push for answers before the time is right. Teach me to trust your sense of timing rather than my own and to surrender my will to Your greater and wiser plan. Help me let life unfold slowly, like the small rosebud whose petals unravel bit by bit, and remind me that in hurrying the bloom along, I destroy the bud and much of the beauty therein.

Instead, let me wait for all to unfold in its own time. Each moment and state of growth contains loveliness. Teach me to slow down enough to appreciate life and all it holds. Amen."

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

At The Cross

While it's not uncommon for lyrics from songs to resound in my head long after the iPod is turned off, I pay attention to why particular lyrics linger for awhile.

And most often, their meaning is revealed in a short amount of time. Christian music echoes in my mind quite often and it rests in my heart to serve as another faithful reminder in God's loving grace and mercy when I need those little nudges.

On my mind prior to Lent was just a line or two from a song that is shuffled about on my iPod during my Wii workout. And it's that song that has become my meditation, my theme, for this Lenten season. Drawn to it with tear-filled eyes and a heart ready for abandonment to Christ's greater plan, that in His time will be revealed.

'To the cross I cling,
Of its suffering I do drink
Of its work I do sing

At the cross You beckon me
You draw me gently to my knees, and I am
Lost for words, so lost in love,
I'm sweetly broken, wholly surrendered

In awe of the cross I must confess
How wondrous your redeeming love and
How great is your faithfulness'

(Taken from 'Sweetly Broken' by Jeremy Riddle)

I recently shared with a friend something I heard at a Women's Conference a couple of years ago, regarding our Cross that God gives to us. The speaker shared that sometimes taking up her cross was a lot to handle. More than she could bear. Something she struggled with carrying day in and day out. She then mentioned that although she never completely sets that cross down, sometimes she just needs to lean on it for a bit. Isn't that an interesting way to envision it?

Although some crosses and adversities that God is asking for me to carry and bear seem to be too much for me, I still embrace them and carry them on my journey. Not always willingly or with a contented heart, I'll admit. I am not resigned to my infertility cross. I still despise it and I'll admit that truthfully. I'll also admit that I've leaned on it an awful lot. But I think during this Lenten season I'm being asked to pick it up and carry it again for a bit and we'll see what comes of it by Easter. Perhaps carrying it won't be as difficult as it has been in the past.

Just wait and see. I hope to prayerfully be beckoned to this particular cross of mine, that I may gently be drawn to my knees. Pray with me, won't you?

Monday, February 22, 2010

Monday Daybook

For Today...February 22nd

Outside My Window... bearable winter weather. No snow and no frigid temps. I can handle this kind of winter.

I Am Thinking... about Margaret's family as they bid farewell to their dear Ellie.

I Am Thankful For... a relatively calm week ahead.

From The Kitchen This Week... Beef n' Biscuit Bake; Easy Baked Parmesan Meatballs; Spinach Pasta Toss for Friday (Thanks, Mommy Monkey!)

I Am Creating... a set of table runners for my uncle.

I Am Going... to keep praying that Lily's new awkward bedtime habits and anxieties will work themselves out.

I Am Reading... the latest issue of Faith & Family; An Undivided Heart by Vonette Bright and Nancy Moser.

I Am Hoping... that hubby will be able to return to normal business hours very soon.

Around The House... we're working on our Sacrifice/Good Deeds jar again this year, but seem to be struggling.

Lyrics In My Head... 'at the cross you beckon me...draw me gently to my knees'

One Of My Favorite Things... the smell of a Glade Creamy Custard & Apple Blossom candle in my kitchen.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week... Lily's second piano lesson; possibly my cousin's high school basketball game; follow-up with my Creighton instructor.

Picture Thought I Am Sharing... (Brought to you by Jonah)

Catch more Daybooks over at The Simple Woman's Daybook.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Okay, I Admit It!

I have an Olympic crush.

I *heart* Alexandre Bilodeau.

There, I said it.

But seriously, don't you too?

Go ahead, Google him all you want, you'll find that Canada has something to be very proud of! What an athlete with heart!

Do I hear an "amen"? Yup, I thought I did.

Leading Into Lent

Hearts and Valentine decorations will come down today in preparation for the season of Lent. Although I hate to see their bright colors disappear, it's just a reminder of the sacrifice that the next season brings. It's always with hope that I embark on the somber weeks of penance and await the Resurrection, because, optimistically I pray that the end of the Lenten season will bring about a better ME and the beautiful colorings of Spring.

In preparation for Lent, I've seen wonderful ideas on how to live out a more faithful, faith-filled season within your own family. Here are a couple that especially caught my eye this last week:

On Lent @ Martin Family Moments

Lent for Little Ones @ Momopoly

I am wrestling with ways to bring about more prayer and sacrifice in even the smallest ways in our home this year. I will again have reminders throughout our home of Jesus' cross and path to Calvary.

Drawing on Tracy's idea, I created something similar and this is on the doorway that leads to the basement and is in the kitchen and a high-traffic area of the main floor. Behind the tomb at the top is a picture of the Resurrected Jesus. Shh...don't tell my kids..

I didn't prepare early enough to order the beautiful Stations of the Cross pictures like Tracy has, instead I photocopied these in black and white from a children's book. These will be lined up the wall along the stairs. We will pass these numerous times daily and be reminded of Jesus' road to the cross and they will also serve as visual aids in our family Stations of the Cross throughout the coming weeks.

I would like to delve deeper into prayer, since my time with the Lord has been slipping in the morning. Daily, I offer a prayer for all those who read here, but if you have a specific intention that I can pray for you this Lent please leave a comment or email me (see sidebar).

Monday, February 15, 2010

On Vocations

I'm not sure if it was our recent visit with dear Fr. G or his homily the weekend before at a local parish, when he spoke on Vocations.

Or maybe it was the Oprah show with the Dominican Sisters.

Either way, I've overheard the children often discussing Vocations lately. It's cute to listen to, really.

Like this the other day:

Jonah: Lily, what are you going to do when you're big?

Lily: I think I'll just be a mom and have kids. That sounds like fun. And then I can do blogging and Facebook all the time. That would be a lot of fun.

Jonah: I think I want to be a Chef. And a Priest. Then I can cook and do Priest stuff too.

Lily: Well, you can cook just like Fr. G, but you couldn't work at a place and get paid. You can't do both. You'd just have to be a priest.

Jonah: Then I'll just be a priest and cook sometimes.

There we have it. I guess everything will work out just perfectly. We'll see what God has planned.

(And yes, it's slightly disturbing that my daughter thinks that all there is to motherhood is babies, blogging and Facebook)

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Well, Poo-Poo!

Assuming that my children are normal and go through many of the same things a child in any other home goes through, there are stages. If it's not one stage, it's another. Good or bad, easy or difficult, typical or just plain weird.

But do you ever wonder about things they say and where they originate from? Like how your son has called his blanket 'Saba' since FOREVER and insists that it be called just that and only that. Or that 'Saba' has a gender (it's male).

And how is it that these little catch phrases or sayings only they truly understand and can giggle mindlessly over for hours? I suppose it's our adulthood that gets in the way. And why are these things really things you'd rather they not repeat in public for fear of what 'real people' might think?

The latest in our home started sometime a few months ago, but has escalated since after Christmas and it continues on a daily basis. Ready? Here it is:

Whoopee Cushion!

Yes, as in this:

I will overhear my children using it in so many random instances while they play that I cannot even count the ways!

'This is my baby, Whoopee Cushion.'
'Here's the new engine, Whoopee Cushion.'
'Come here, you Whoopee Cushion.'
'Haha. That sounds like a Whoopee Cushion.'
'I just made supper. We're having Whoopee Cushions.'

And while this is all very silly, it's funnier still that my children had not even seen a Poo-Poo Cushion until we visited a family member at Christmas time. Until then, it was just a word they heard somewhere and instantly clung to humoring it's oddity.

A part of Childhood Fascination, no doubt. Although peculiar to us adults, ever so laughable to the little ones in our house.

How about your house? Care to share the latest laughable?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Well Done!

I'm proud. There, I said it. This is not something I'd normally share for fear that I was bragging, but when Lily took her Peabody Individual Achievement Test on Saturday and received excellent results I couldn't help but share them.

Being fully confident in her abilities and intelligence, I still needed to see the results of her testing to be sure of where she was actually at in her learning abilities. You know, I'm new to this homeschooling thing and although we are confident in our convictions and our school days and curriculum, sometimes it helps to have confirmation in all of that.

I'm so grateful that we have the opportunity to homeschool and encourage our children to blossom and thrive in our home. For us, it's the right fit and obviously, so far it's working.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Check Your Local Listings

Although I would not normally encourage you to turn on the tube and watch the Oprah show, you may want to tune in tomorrow and see the interview with her guests, The Dominican Sisters of Mary.

I received an email heads-up from a friend over the weekend and did some checking to verify. The Dominican Sisters of Mary website confirmed that the show they taped last week will air TUESDAY.

Let's pray that many hearts will be open as they hear the message the Sisters share on Oprah's popular, highly viewed daily show.

February Daybook

For Today 2.8.2010

Outside My Window...more snow.

I Am Thinking...about flowers and color and how much more I appreciate the thought of them when I stare out at a vast area of complete white.

I Am Thankful For...a busy, fun day on Saturday with Fr. G, my parents and some friends. And a relaxing, restful day on Sunday.

From The Learning Room...more practice on letters and numbers for Jonah, including a lot more work on pre-reading skills; St. Valentine's Day projects.

From The Kitchen...plans for soup and easy slow-cooker recipes, since I'll be away from home several days this week. And these muffins for the feast of Our Lady of Lourdes.

I Am Creating...thoughts in my head of garden additions for this summer and plans for flower garden expansions in our yard.

I Am Reading...The Handbook for Catholic Moms: Nurturing your Heart, Mind, Body and Soul, that I had pre-ordered from Amazon.

I Am Hoping...that my scratchy throat doesn't amount to anything and no other family members are effected.

Around The House...a rearranged living room and pondering on paint colors.

One Of My Favorite Things...a sale at Old Navy. Their Semi-Annual Kids & Baby Sale is going on now.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The appointment on Tuesday; Little Flowers meeting on Wednesday; feast of Our Lady of Lourdes on Thursday; Reed and I speak at a local Marriage Course on Saturday (and hopefully a Valentine's date night to follow).

Picture Thought I Am Sharing...I ran across this old photo last week and it made my aching heart, ache all the more.

Thanks to our host, The Simple Woman's Daybook.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Thanks Buddy, I Needed That

Because it has kind of been ONE.OF.THOSE.DAYS, I could not help but laugh heartily when Jonah came up with this one during snack time:

"Lil, you have blueberries on your down lip."

Of course, he was referring to Lily's bottom lip. And perhaps it isn't really that hysterical to you, but on a day like today I couldn't help but reach down and snuggle my little boy while planting a big kiss on his little nose.

I needed that laugh.

Hi-Lo: February 5th

(Brought to you by Martin Family Moments)


1. On Saturday, I was renewed along with over 100 other ladies at a Women's Conference. It left me with some things to ponder on this week.

2. Jonah successfully counted to 100 this week!! He needed a little bit of help on the 10's occasionally, but it's a HUGE deal for this boy to even sit and make the effort. Trust me, he's gotten A LOT of praise for his latest accomplishment!

3. I received a call yesterday from the woman who will administer Lily's Peabody Assessment Testing. Someone rescheduled, so she can fit Miss Lily in this Saturday. This is great since the testing is done in a city an hour away and we just happen to be going there Saturday any way. A combined trip! Hooray!

4. I met someone who I think I may have more in common with than I thought. And, I think that we just might become good friends. It happens to be my male Dr. K's wife and she just so happens to be my new Creighton Model! Although I have been rebelling at the thought of further NFP instruction in order to hopefully benefit from it in our infertility diagnosis, I finally took the leap. I think I'm glad I did.

5. The kids and I took a long walk through the swamp and woods behind our house yesterday. The weather was kind of icky/hazy/misty, but temps. were in the twenties. Not too bad to head out for an adventure. Only thing missing was Daddy.


1. The pizza/birthday party for Lily's two little friends had to be rescheduled. Unfortunately, both girls came down with the flu overnight. Lily and I were bummed, but it gives us something to look forward to again.

2. This is Reed's busy time at work. Although he is grateful (as am I) that he has a steady job, this time of year also poses many deadlines with extra work and added stress. As much as he tries to keep work at his work place, he's only human.

How was your week? What were the Highs you celebrated and the Lows you embraced?

Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Celebrate With Colleen!

One of my favorite friends, Colleen, is celebrating her Blogiversary with a giveaway. Go here to congratulate her on TWO years of blogging and 100 Followers and you will be entered for her great prizes!

It all ends on February 13th , but don't wait!

Stop on over at Martin Family Moments today!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Notes From Saturday

On Saturday, I attended the local annual Women's Conference. It's an event I look forward to every year since I go with my mom and a number of friends.

Although I thoroughly enjoy it each year, I do have a few gripes. I wish that it weren't quite as long. This mama doesn't spend that much time in one day sitting on her fanny, so it's rather rough on the behind to stay alert and attentive all day long when the 'ol fanny is aching!

My other is that although the talks are wonderful and I gain a lot from them, I do wish there was maybe one less. I always run out of time to catch up with all of my old friends and acquaintances. There just is not enough time for breaks, lunch and small talk. We are women after all. We've got a lot to catch up on each year!

I didn't get nearly enough time to talk with dear Jamie or love on that dear Sweetie Pie (and if you're wondering, yes, Sweetie Pie is really THAT CUTE in person!!).

That aside, I've decided to post a few tidbits from my notes. (Hope this helps fill in what you missed, Jamie!)

*There is a difference between a life of affectivity and effectivity. Affectivity involves rest; effectivity involves unrest. How much time am I spending working on my effectiveness and not on being affective/affirming in my life? How do I live an affirming life?

* The forever to-do list in life, in motherhood creates plenty of ways to be effective, but the list and the things are always there to be done. How often do I start in one room and clean up room after room, only to begin all over again? It can wait until later/tomorrow. Instead, spend the time being affirming/affective with your children/family.

* Learn to just 'be'. Wherever it is, a room in your home, the garden, the park. Pick a place and just 'be'. Be aware of your surroundings and just sit in them. It's a lesson in being affective.

* Most often your husband and children are more than ready to let you women be god for them. They would like nothing better than for you to do everything for them and be everything for them! And honestly, don't you all try and be a god for them? Doing everything for everyone. Pleasing everyone all of the time. But when are you filled and taken care of?

*Be an authentic woman. Don't be afraid to be who you are. Be authentic to God in prayer. Be free to be who you are in God's presence (your prayertime). You cannot hide from Him. You don't need to paint everything beautiful and just come to Him acting like everything is fine...pretty your face, bring Him brownies, show Him only your best, etc. He's already seen who you are. He's seen your brokenness and sadness. He already knows you are not perfect.

* Four Ways to live as God's Beloved
1. Surround yourself with positive friendships where you are encouraged.
2. Pray.
3. Be gentle with yourself.
4. Be an Affirmer - Be a Blesser.

These are just my tidbits from my notes/memory. There have been other reminders flooding my thoughts since Saturday, more thoughts for my own improvement. It was a blessed day for sure.

We did miss dear Shirley, but I know she was watching over all of us that day. Please keep her family in your prayers as they mourn the loss of their beloved wife and mother.

Beginning Of February Daybook

For Today 2.1.2010

Outside My's cold, just above zero. Later today snow will begin to fall with little accumulation.

I Am Thinking...that I cannot believe that February is here and Lent is right around the corner.

I Am Thankful For... a husband who leaves in the cold, early-morning hours to go to a cold, lifeless workplace. All so that I get to stay with my children in a warm, cozy and busy house all day.

From The Learning Room...plugging away through our school days, but this week we will begin a couple of units in Earth Science learning about Water and Land, thanks to CurrClick.

From The Kitchen...Slow-Cooker Tex-Mex Chicken that didn't get made last week and perhaps a few other new meals from online.

I Am Creating...Lily's first year scrapbook on Scrapblog. I'm new to it, but I'm enjoying my time playing around with embellishments, stickers and backgrounds!

I Am hopefully (finally!) get Lily signed up for piano lessons.

I Am Reading...The Sister Circle by Vonette Bright & Nancy Moser

I Am Hoping...that God provides answers soon and enlightens my physician next week when I meet with her again.

Around The House...there are Valentine's Day decorations sprinkled here and there, reminding me of *L-O-V-E*.

Lyrics In My Head...'greater things have yet to come and greater things are still to be done in this city...'

One Of My Favorite single cup of morning coffee, with french vanilla creamer. I enjoy its simplicity.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The, the possibility of a trip to a local library hosting a Zoomobile. Attend a birthday party for two sweet little girls. Cooking with our friend, Fr. G, for his annual Wild Game Feed.

Picture Thought I Am Sharing...

Thanks to our host,The Simple Woman's Daybook.

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