"God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him."
(1 Jn 4:16)

Monday, March 31, 2008

The Honeymoon is Over

Reality has set in. We are serious about having the children do their chores.

Theresa posed the first challenge, asking a little incredulously, "I have to vacuum the living room?" I remembered that Charity begins in the living room (Splendor in the Ordinary) and I answered, "Yes. You did a beautiful job cleaning it. You can use the yellow vacuum if you want." She happily finished her "Before Dinner" chore.

On Thursday afternoon, Bernadette guffawed and said, "I am too scared to vacuum both sets of stairs." I responded, "You don't have to be scared. I will be downstairs cleaning up." She vacuumed the stairs very nicely.

Brendan is a little bit more difficult, but we are trying to meet his challenges. His first challenge came with the dinner dishes (no pots and pans, just plates, glasses, and utensils). He whined, "I'm not doing all of these dishes." His father answered, "You can do all of the dishes without complaining or you can do the dishes plus another chore." Knowing that love and charity can be cultivated in the kitchen (Splendor in the Ordinary), my husband remained in the kitchen keeping our son company. Needless to say, another chore was not needed.

Next, Brendan stated, "What do you mean I have to do the laundry? That's a girl's job." I gently told him that it was not a girl's job. I went on to say, "Laundry is something that you will need to know how to do when you are older. Before Mommy and Daddy were married, Daddy had to do his own laundry." This morning, I heard Brendan ask Theresa, "Can I start the laundry and you clear and wipe down the table?" Theresa responded, "No, I need to learn how to do it."

Brendan's final challenge was, "I don't know how to wipe down the table." It looked like he did not know how to clear it either. He has done both previously. I met his challenge, saying, "I will show you how." This guaranteed that he not only cleared the table, but that he also wiped down most of it.

I love my children and I know that part of loving them is teaching them the skills necessary to not only contribute to our family, but to one day live on their own.

If You Care About Human Life...

Please read Joel Connelly's article I-1000 campaign seeks to sell voters on death, visit the Coalition Against Assisted Suicide and make a donation to this organization to help them to defeat I-1000. As Rita Marker recently shared, "Everyone who opposes assisted suicide is a Washingtonian for the next year." (Celebrate Life, March-April 2008, p. 32) Show the people of Washington and our nation that we value human life and that killing people (via assisted suicide) simply because they are sick or disabled is never acceptable.

More links to information on assisted suicide are available via the Gospel of Life Institute's Spotlight page.

Spelling Corrections

outweighed outweighed outweighed

paid paid paid

I am learning humility.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Spring Snow

On Wednesday, I took the comforter off my bed and replaced it with a cotton blanket. I was rewarded for my efforts by shouts from my children, "It's snowing! It's snowing!" While our snow is nothing compared to that found in other states, it is a rare occurrence in the Seattle/Tacoma area, especially in spring. Usually the only place that we see snow at this time of year (or any time of year) is in the mountains.

It rained, hailed, and snowed intermittently, yesterday. Today, we have had only snow and the children are dreaming about making a snowman. Unfortunately, we will probably only receive a dusting of this amazing powder that brings joy to children's hearts.

Attempting the Impossible

The Challenge: Organizing, purging, and generally trying to make more room in our 1800 sq. ft. house (+/- 200 sq. ft.) by the time our baby is born in October.

The Motivation: Alicia, Danielle, Elizabeth, Jessica

The Reading List:
Clutter's Last Stand: It's Time To De-junk Your Life!
Confessions of an Organized Homemaker: The Secrets of Uncluttering Your Home and Taking Control of Your Life
The Hidden Art of Homemaking
Is There Life After Housework
It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff
Keeping House: The Litany of Everyday Life
Splendor in the Ordinary: Your Home as a Holy Place

The First Step: "Just do it"

The Second Step (begun yesterday): An adapted version of Danielle Bean's simple chore chart (It works much better than telling your children to do something and then forgetting who you told to do it.)

I hope to be able to share my family's progress over the next few months.

Flowers to Brighten Your Day

Jessica of Shower of Roses gave me this beautiful bouquet of flowers.

I am giving this dedicated mother (who I hope to meet in real life at the Northwest Catholic Family Education Conference) the above bouquet and some roses.

These flowers are also a gift to everyone else who reads my blog (Jackie this definitely includes you) and to those mothers who have been an answer to my prayers, motivating me, through their posts, to get my house organized Alicia, Danielle, Elizabeth, and (I have to mention her again) Jessica.

The box of roses are from one of Dover's weekly samples.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Remembering Holy Saturday

On Holy Saturday morning, the children and I enjoyed our tradition of coloring Easter eggs. Patrick surprised us all by embracing our tradition with great zeal. He colored seven eggs all in various shades of green (I would not have expected my little Irish lad to choose any other color).

Next year, in addition to continuing our tradition, I hope to try making pysanky with my three eldest.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Remembering Good Friday

On Good Friday, we participated in a procession and prayer vigil for unborn babies and their mothers.

"Sea Padre" organized and led the procession to Planned Parenthood in West Seattle.

After the prayer vigil, we returned to Holy Family where we started the first day of the Divine Mercy Novena.

Photos were taken by Catherine.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Prayers Needed

Please pray for a man named Gerald. Yesterday morning, as my husband crossed a street, he heard metal crashing. He looked back and saw a man flying through the air. The man hit a tall wire fence and slid down, becoming wedged between the fence and a metal railing. My husband ran over to him and he and an off-duty police officer tried to keep Gerald conscious by talking to him and asking him questions. Gerald's head was bleeding and he said that he felt like he had broken his bones. He was sure that he was going to die, but my husband tried to reassure him that this would not be the case. The medics (summoned by my husband and the officer) arrived shortly after being called. They carefully removed Gerald from between the fence and the railing, and placed him on a board. Gerald was transported to Harbor View Medical Center.

My husband dropped a card off for Gerald, yesterday, but was unable to learn how he was doing (for obvious reasons).

After initially looking like he was going to drive away from hitting a car and then a pedestrian, the driver of the car stopped in the intersection. Please pray for him, too.

Patrick Painting

Yesterday, as Patrick sat painting, I said to him, "Patrick, you don't need to dip your paintbrush in the water if you're not changing colors. Dipping your paintbrush in the water too much can make the paint very wet."

Patrick immediately responded, "Fortunately, the paint dries."

Friday, March 14, 2008

Patrick's Breakfast Song

"A spoonful of seeds helps the medicine go down, the medicine go down..."

Thursday, March 13, 2008


Please pray for the repose of the soul of Archbishop Paulos Faraj Raho of Mosul. The story of his death was reported on Catholic World News and Catholic News Agency.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Getting to know your friends

I received this little q and a via e-mail from a couple of friends and thought that it would be fun to share it.

Welcome to the 2008 edition of getting to know your friends. Okay, here's what you're supposed to do, and try not to be lame and spoil the fun! Copy this entire email and paste into a new email [or blog post] that you can send, change all the answers so that they apply to you. Then send this to a whole bunch of people you know, INCLUDING the person that sent it to you.

1. What is your occupation? loving wife, loving mommy, pro-life volunteer

2. What color are your socks right now? what socks? I like bare feet!

3. What are you listening to right now? daughters giggling

4. What was the last thing that you ate? brown rice and canned corn. No, it was not what I had planned for dinner. The chicken and vegetables did not cook in a timely manner because I turned off the wrong burner (usually, I turn on the wrong burner). At least, tonight's dinner is already made.

5. Can you drive a stick shift? Definitely! My first and second cars were stick shifts. Thank you Mom and Dad! I learned to drive a stick going down to California with my friend, Donna. Thank you for your patience, Donna!

6. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? Red (or navy blue)

7. Last person you spoke to on the phone? My dad

8. Do you like the person who sent this to you? yes, I love both of the people who sent this to me

9. Favorite vacation? Maui or Mauritius

10. Favorite drink? water

11. What is your favorite sport to watch? soccer

12. Have you ever dyed your hair? no

13. Pets? a dog might be in our future

14. Favorite food? apple ~ Golden Delicious to be precise

15. Last movie you watched? I can't remember and no that's not the name of a movie. One of the things that I gave up for Lent was watching movies (it wasn't really a sacrifice, as I have a hard time sitting still to watch anything on a screen)

16. What do you do to vent anger? Get on the computer.

17. Favorite Day of the year? The day I was married, my children's birthdays, and Christmas

18. What was your favorite toy as a child? Jane ~ a doll that I was given for my third birthday (I still have her).

19. What is your favorite, fall or spring? spring!

20. Hugs or kisses? Both!

21. Cherry or Blueberry? blueberry

22. Do you want your friends to email you back? yes

23. Who is most likely to respond? The two people who sent this to me

24. Who is least likely to respond? The people who have received this and not sent it to me

25. Current living arrangements? comfy

26. When was the last time you cried? Sunday ~ Anneke, Benjamin is a beautiful miracle!

27. What is on the floor of your closet? shoes, bags with sweaters

28. Who is the friend you have had the longest that you are sending this to? my sisters

29. The friend you have had the shortest that you are sending this to? ????

30. Favorite smell(s)? roses, warm evenings in California walking in the rose gardens or by the roses outside the mission church

31. What inspires you? God

32. What are you afraid of? spiders

33. Plain, cheese or spicy hamburgers? cheese

34. Favorite car? My "big brass wagon" ~ it's actually a green van that seats 12 ~ the children currently have plenty of room

35. Favorite cat breed? How about favorite cat? Lucky

36. Number of keys on your key ring? 5

37. How many years at your current job? 11 1/2

38. Who do you miss the most? my mom and my dad

39. Favorite day of the week? Sunday

40. How many states have you lived in? 2

41. How many countries have you been to? 9

42. Today's date and time: March 6th, 7:10 am

Have a blessed day!

Monday, March 03, 2008

St. Mary's Messenger - Catholic Children's Magazine

My prayers have been answered! A few months ago, I was sent a copy of St. Mary's Messenger by the senior editor of the magazine and I was impressed. St. Mary's Messenger contains stories and information that are pertinent to the liturgical year in a child-friendly, eye-pleasing format. My second eldest daughter went to bed on more than one occasion, looking at the magazine. St. Mary's Messenger provides a wonderful way to teach and reinforce the Catholic faith.

In order to publish this magazine, the editors need to show their prospective publisher that there is a market for it. If you have been looking for a Catholic children's magazine, please visit and fill in their form, stating that you would like to read the magazine. Filling in the form does not mean that you are obligated to subscribe when the magazine is printed. A PDF sample of the magazine is available on the website.

Please pray for Lori Baron

Received via e-mail:
Dear family and friends,

We need to ask for your prayers for Lori Baron again. We just found out last week after her surgery that her cancer is back and it's all around her diaphragm. It's the same ovarian cancer she had before, which means that this could take her quickly. Please keep her in your prayers as well as everyone else in the family; they still have the 11 adopted kids at home ranging in age from 18 to almost 10 (at the end of this month). They just did a second surgery to take care of a leak she had in her intestines and it doesn't sound like she's doing that well either, so she needs all the prayers she can get.

Thanks and God bless you all!

Padre Pio

My mom introduced me to Padre Pio when she was sick. My love for this saint grew after my mom's death. I was very happy to read the following on Catholic World News:

San Giovanni Rotondo, Mar. 3, 2008 ( - Church officials exhumed the body of Padre Pio on March 2, in preparation for the public veneration of his remains later this year.

Bishop Domenico D'Ambrosio reported that the body of Padre Pio, who died in 1968, was partially incorrupt. Although there was no sign of the stigmata-- the wounds on his hands and feet, matching those of the crucified Christ-- the saint's hair and beard were intact. The bishop remarked that the hands of the beloved Capuchin friar were so well preserved that he appeared to have "just had a manicure."

The body of Padre Pio--who was canonized by Pope John Paul II (bio - news) in 2002-- is being transferred to a new shrine in San Giovanni Rotondo, where he lived. His remains will be exposed for veneration there. Archbishop D'Ambrosio overcame objections from some of Padre Pio's relatives to exhume the saint's body, making it available for veneration during the 40th anniversary of his death. Each year nearly 1 million people travel to San Giovanno Rotondo to visit the saint's grave; Church officials expect larger crowds for the anniversary year.

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