Friday, November 16, 2012

7 Quick Takes: Checking In

When one leaves their blog for a week, the world begins to wonder.....or does it?

Thanks to a shout-out today from Colleen, it was the kick in the pants I needed to stop in and let you know that I did not fall off the face of the earth. Or the blogosphere.

That's right, Mr. President, you didn't get rid of me that easily.

While my heart and hopes were a bit shattered last week, I picked myself back up, rallied the troops and declared that this is where the rubber hits the road.

Never mind. I'm not getting into that today.

Instead, I'm just gonna tell you what's up and assure you all is well, if not just a tad bit busy.


Last week, Miss Gianna decided to take matters into her own hands and give potty training a whirl. After several days of sitting and trying, one day she finally tinkled just a bit.

While I thought it was a fluke because my big kids weren't the least bit interested until around age three, we pressed on. Guess what? Every day we keep on trying and each day she goes potty at least once or twice. To keep me on task with getting her to the toilet and with sticking to it, yesterday she decided to go #2 as well. Woohoo!! A repeat performance today as well.
We'll see what happens from here and we are trying pull ups off and on, but I'm gonna keep encouraging as long as she keeps trying.
Go Gianna!


Not to be out-done by the growing-up-too-fast committee, Margaret decided to finally give the stairs a try. She succeeded. She is also pulling herself up by things and almost thinking about walking around them.

While the cushions were off the couch the other day, she decided to crawl up on the couch and crawl back and forth.
She thought she was pretty darn smart. Until she rolled off the couch. And then she tried it all over again.

Busy, busy little ladies I've got here.


Hubby took the day off work last week and took the big kids on a field trip. Our homeschool group was going to a nature preserve for a nature hike and other activities.

The kids had a lot of fun learning about wildlife and their habitats and playing games.

The indoor rock climbing wall was a hit as well.

I'm so grateful that Reed has a job that he can take time off and enjoy some of these activities. It works well these days so the big kids can get out with the group and I can stay home with the little girls.


Have I mentioned here that I'll be a great-auntie again in the next few weeks? Yup, great niece or nephew #7  is due December 15. I went to a baby shower last weekend for this little one, my niece's first child.

While it would be cute to add a photo of the super cute shower, I have none. Instead, insert here a cute growing belly mama, excited family and a Classic Winnie the Pooh shower theme. Trust me, the hostesses were VERY cutesy-cutesy and matchy-matchy in the decor. Pinterest would be proud!!

Can I also make another mention?

Not to be out-done in generosity, God's adding more to our extended family brood in the spring too. I have TWO more greats entering the world then as well. Two of our nephews are adding to their families again. Hooray!


Who's ready for Christmas? Um, me neither.

Working on shopping and online shopping like a crazy woman, whenever I get the chance. I'd like to be finished or nearly there by Advent. It really does make my Advent so much more meaningful and calm. Spending time at home preparing and less time in the store listening to the same old Christmas song they've been playing since October, definitely keeps me more focused on Advent.


Thankfully, Swagbucks (see sidebar if you want to sign up) helped me earn lots of gift cards in the last several months and they are helping with the Christmas budget. I cashed my swagbucks in for lots of Amazon gift cards and a number of Walmart ones as well. Every little bit helps, that's for sure.

In addition, I will be thankful to my parish this year for helping with the budget. In October I took a very minimal part time (more like volunteering, but getting paid for the time) position at our little parish. Since we are twinned with a larger parish where the secretary works/parish office is located/rectory is, our small parish felt a bit left out. Our new pastor agreed with parishioners that having a contact person here to tie up loose ends, take care of odds and ends, make phone calls, arrangements for things, etc, etc, was a good idea.

Enter ME. I applied for the position because a) I could work around my at-home schedule, b) I wanted to help out a bit more at our church and c) I really missed working for the Catholic church.

The timing seemed ideal and now seemed like the time. Thankfully, Fr. Michael is really one of those ideal priests to work for/with as well. So far, it's a good thing. A very good thing.


This evening we're going to attend a White Mass. Have you ever heard of one? I hadn't.

A local Catholic physician asked  a nearby priest to have one here and he is going ahead with it. A White Mass is specifically offered for health care professionals, but anyone can attend. Since we are friends with a couple of very good Catholic physicians and one of them is our family physician, we feel like we really need to attend.  They need our support and prayers as they face a lot of opposition when they stand up for their morals and beliefs. With the HHS mandate around the bend, they're gonna need those extra prayers.

Happy Friday and Happy Weekend!


Thursday, November 8, 2012

A Guest Post From My Eldest

Lily seems to have a fascination with my blog and all things held within it. I'm not sure why she enjoys re-reading my posts that I've written, especially when most are just photos and it's all things that she has witnessed IRL. However, I won't turn away any Hopeful Heart fans, including my daughter.

I told Lily she could write a short guest post answering questions I gave her.

I guess she is more of a short and sweet type blogger and no need for extra fluff. I prodded gently guided her to get more to her answers, but you get what you get.

Without further ado, my resident guest blogger, Lily.......

Use three words to describe yourself:


If you could have a day where you do anything you want, what would you do?

I would go to a water park,have a pedicure, and go out for lunch with friends.

What is your favorite meal?

My favorite meal is my Mom's lasagna. Yummy!!

Who is your favorite Saint and why?

My favorite saint is St.Agnes. I like that she was a younger saint and I like in her story that it says 'her wrists were so tiny that the chains slipped right off her arms'. It reminds me of myself because I am kind of petite and have small wrists too.

Do you have a favorite prayer?

The Guardian Angel prayer is my favorite. I like asking my angel for protection and knowing that my angel is always watching over me.

What kind of work do you want to do when you grow up? Why?

When I grow up I want to be an assessor, because my Dad is an assessor. It seems like the work would be kind of fun, but still challenging.

What is your favorite season? Why?

My favorite season is summer, because I get off from school,can go swimming, and get together with friends.
I don't like winter because of the icy roads, so that would definitely not be my favorite.

If you could meet in person any blogger's kids, who would you choose?

I would like to meet Patty's kids.**

**Disclaimer: I made her chose someone and she did have difficulty deciding. It wasn't that she didn't want to meet all of you or your kids, but given two seconds to decide her choice was the 'ones from Texas'. Sorry, ladies. Texas always wins. Right, Patty?

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Sometimes The Race Is Tiring

After last night's main event, I've felt like I am in an Election Hangover today.

No, my guy did not win and take the Presidency.

No, my state amendment to keep marriage between one man and one woman did not pass.

No, my U.S. Senator was not elected.

Disappointed, very disappointed. For me, for my family, for my children. For all of us.

But somewhere in the midst of today while my heart still heals, I saw several postings from today's Mass readings:

'Do everything without grumbling or questioning,
that you may be blameless and innocent,
children of God without blemish
in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation,
among whom you shine like lights in the world,
as you hold on to the word of life,
so that my boast for the day of Christ may be
that I did not run in vain or labor in vain.'

My husband also shared this with me from today's office of readings:

' The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away;
blessed be the name of the Lord!
We accept good things from God;
and should we not accept evil?'

Let our hearts not grow weary in fighting the fight and let us always stand on guard protecting our children and our families.

Our Lady of Hope, Pray For Us!

Due to the fact that I'm just plain tired of the politics, tomorrow I'll bring a fun, new post from a guest blogger.

Perhaps that will at least put something in your reader to smile over.

Until then, may our hearts be light, our prayers more powerful than before and may we rise up even stronger.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Go Vote And Pray Today

 A Pro-Life Prayer for Our President and Public Officials

Lord God, Author of Life and Source of Eternal Life, move the hearts of all our public officials and especially our President, to fulfill their responsibilities worthily and well to all those entrusted to their care. Help them in their special leadership roles, to extend the mantle of protection to the most vulnerable, especially the defenseless unborn, whose lives are threatened with extermination by an indifferent society. Guide all public officials by your wisdom and grace to cease supporting any law that fails to protect the fundamental good that is human life itself, which is a gift from God and parents. You are the Protector and Defender of the lives of the innocent unborn. Change the hearts of those who compromise the call to protect and defend life. Bring our nation to the values that have made us a great nation, a society that upholds the values of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all. Mary, the Mother of the living, help us to bear witness to the Gospel of Life with our lives and our laws, through Christ, Our Lord. Amen.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

For All The Saints & Praying For Souls

This year our homeschool group didn't have an All Saints Day party as we usually have in the past. While it was a bummer not to be able to celebrate all of these holy men and women with other families, the day at home ended up being what we needed.

Literally, I was scouring online Halloween day trying to find unique and EASY brilliantly clever ideas to make the feast of All Saints special. There was a ton out out there, but I picked just a couple quick ideas.

We started off with a few rounds of Pin the Halo on the Saint and my kids thought it was a hoot.

A little bit of Saint trivia/Saint quotes and my kids were just a bit stumped. And they thought they had the day off from school, ha!

Next, we worked on saint puppets on paper bags. I found super helpful templates over at Catholic Icing. My kids really enjoyed picking out their Saints they were going to make and their attire. Even though Lily and Jonah are getting older and not as into crafts, then still enjoyed this project.

Jonah's choices:

St. Nicholas

St. Francis of Assisi

And Lily's:

St. Agnes

St. Clare

Lastly, for lunch I attempted PB and Jelly 'stigmata' sandwiches. Almost epic fail. But the kids got the drift and commended my effort. In case you can't see it, it's a cut out hand with jelly for the stigmat part.


On Friday, All Souls Day, members of our homeschool group gathered at a local cemetery to pray the rosary. A bit chilly, but we walked as we prayed so that helped to keep us warm. I always like to look at the dates, family names and designs etched in the stones as I walk through a cemetery. Many of them are so beautiful and there is so much history written within them.

One of the mom's in the group had her brother, a local parish priest, come and 'flag' the grave sites of priests who were buried there. We were able to walk and pray the rosary while stopping at numerous priests' gravesides. It really was very memorable and I think it made the prayers so much more meaningful.

With such unique feasts that we can delve into as Catholics, we get to so fully engage in the richness and beauty of our faith. Don't you think?

What treasures and graces there are for us to keep unfolding as we go through life. Equally so, what gifts we get to pass on to our children for years to come.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Dallop Of Halloween

On tap for today, All Saints Day: NO SCHOOL (we observe Holy Days as holidays), pin the halo on the Saint, Saint memory card game, Name the Saint Quiz and Saint Puppets (tons of ideas over at Catholic Icing).

Perhaps I'll post photos later, if I remember and the little girls cooperate and give me a free minute.

Happy All Saints Day!!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...