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

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


My husband gave me another Christmas gift, today. In November, my laptop screen started displaying horizontal red and blue lines. Well, today, a reconditioned (like new) Thinkpad arrived in the mail. My husband is so sweet. I had no idea that he had ordered it for me. I am feeling a little guilty because I gave him a very practical gift for Christmas.

Update on my Mother-In-Law

Thank you to everyone who has been praying for my mother-in-law. The doctors determined that she had had a heart attack, not a stroke. She returned home briefly and was scheduled to travel to a hospital in Seattle in January; however, she was readmitted to the hospital today, as she was not doing well. Please continue to pray.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

2008 Listening

I'm cleaning up my sidebar in anticipation of 2009. Below are some of the books on CD that we listened to this past year.

The Swiss Family Robinson
The Moffats
Mary Poppins

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas 2008

December 24 saw my eldest son and his sisters shoveling snow from behind our van, so that we could all go to Midnight Mass.

After the children finished clearing some of the snow, I tried to back the van out of the driveway, but failed. Thus, I cleared snow until Elizabeth needed me. When my husband came home from work, he shoveled the remainder of the snow from behind the van. However, our efforts were for naught because our van still could not make it onto our street. Being the wonderful man he is, my husband proceeded to shovel the snow from behind our smaller car. We had agreed that if the van could not make it out of our street, then he would take the older children to Midnight Mass. We were disappointed that we could not all go, but I knew that, like me, my husband and children were really looking forward to assisting at the first Christmas Eve Mass at North American Martyrs.

While they were at Mass, I was busy at home, putting the younger children to bed, etc. Eventually, I fell asleep. I woke with a start when I heard my oldest son say, "We are going to Heaven, tonight." At that point, I started to pray intensely. I knew that my husband had been waking extra early, all week, to walk 30 minutes to catch one of the few operating buses and I could not help worrying. I was overwhelmed with relief when I heard our garage door open.

From my room, I heard the children commenting on what they saw when they came upstairs.

Eventually, I forced myself out of bed and wandered into the kitchen. My husband told me that he had fallen asleep at the wheel and woke when the car drifted into a snowbank on the side of the road. I told him and the children why I was awake and I thanked God for keeping them safe. The conversation changed to the Mass and my eldest son shared, "It was the best Mass that I have ever been, too." Bernadette stated, "I felt like I was in Heaven." We eventually made our way to bed (the children decided to sleep in the living room).

Around 7:00 a.m. on Christmas morning, we all wandered into the living room and the children sang their traditional "Happy Birthday" to Baby Jesus.

After they finished singing, we opened presents. The children were pleased with their gifts from St. Nicholas, their grandparents, and godparents. Favorites are shown below.

My husband then worked on putting the turkey in the oven. After doing so, we got ready to go to Mass locally. My heart longed to have gone to the Tridentine Rite Midnight Mass, but I was happy to even be able to go. We returned home and everyone relaxed while Catherine and I made the final dinner preparations. The other children had made the jello mold and the stuffing on Christmas Eve day (it has paid to have my children help me in the kitchen from a very young age). The meal was delicious, thanks to my family.

We pray that everyone has a happy and blessed Christmastide!

Gaudete Christus est natus!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Christ, the Savior, is born!
We hope that everyone has a holy, happy, and blessed Christmas!

Silent Night

  1. Silent night, Holy night,
    All is calm, all is bright
    'Round yon virgin mother and child!
    Holy infant so tender and mild,
    Sleep in heavenly peace,
    Sleep in heavenly peace.

  2. Silent night, Holy night
    Shepherds quake at the sight
    Glories stream from heaven afar,
    Heavenly hosts sing "Alleluia"
    Christ the Savior is born.
    Christ the Savior is born.

  3. Silent night, Holy night
    Son of God, love's pure light
    Radiant beams from Thy holy face
    With the dawn of redeeming grace.
    Jesus, Lord at thy birth.
    Jesus, Lord at thy birth.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Please Pray

My mother-in-law had another stroke and is in the critical care unit. Please keep her in your prayers. She has really tried to be a second mother to me since my mom's death and I love her a lot.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,

In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there...

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree

How lovely are thy branches!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Books 2008

Each year, we give each of our children a new Christmas book. This year's books will include the following (in no particular order):

The Little Drummer Boy
Kristina Rodanas' illustrations bring this well-known song to life.

The Huron Carol
We have to have this book on our shelf, as our parish is North American Martyrs and our youngest was born on the feast of St. Isaac Jogues, St. John de Brebeuf, and Companions (on the new calendar).

How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
This classic Christmas story is one of Patrick's favorites.

Angela and the Baby Jesus
This is a sweet story about a young girl's love and concern for the Baby Jesus.

Charles Dicken's A Christmas Carol illustrated by Arthur Rackham
This was my book when I was young and I hope that my daughter treasures it as much as I did.

Miracle on 34th Street
I have not read this book, but it comes highly recommended.

Letters From Father Christmas
A babysitter introduced this book to my children a few years ago. It's about time it made its way onto our shelf, especially since St. Nicholas or Santa Claus was fondly known as Father Christmas to me when I was young.

Chesterton on "Keeping Christ in Christmas"

"You cannot chip away the statue of a mother from all round that of a newborn child. You cannot suspend the new-born child in mid-air; indeed you cannot really have a statue of a newborn child at all. Similarly, you cannot suspend the idea of a newborn child in the void or think of him without thinking of his mother. You cannot visit the child without visiting the mother, you cannot in common human life approach the child except through the mother. If we are to think of Christ in this aspect at all, the other idea follows I as it is followed in history. We must either leave Christ out of Christmas, or Christmas out of Christ, or we must admit, if only as we admit it in an old picture, that those holy heads are too near together for the haloes not to mingle and cross."
~The Everlasting Man by G.K. Chesterton ~

Saturday, December 20, 2008


We were supposed to have our pastor over for dinner and a house blessing tonight, but due to the inclement weather, we decided that it was best for him not to venture into our neck of the woods. The benefits of thinking that he was coming were a clean house (ready for Christmas) and a delicious roast. We only wish that we could have shared it with him.

That said, I have not left our neighborhood, nor have many of our neighbors, for three days. Thankfully, I did go grocery shopping on Wednesday and my husband picked up a few more groceries today. I say thankfully because we have close to a foot of snow outside and it is still coming down heavily. The snow is beautiful and the children enjoy playing in it, but they are praying that it clears up by Christmas Eve. They really want to go to Midnight Mass at our parish (and so do I).

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snow Day

The children have been enjoying the snow, especially two of my boys. Unedited photos below...I don't have time to do anything with them in Photoshop.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Cost of a Christmas Tree

Initial Cost: $33 (after discount)

Subsequent Cost: 1 broken snowman and 5 broken balls

Current Cost: One flustered Mommy

Final Cost: Yet to be determined

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My Husband Thinks I'm Crazy

We usually set up our outdoor nativity scene on the Saturday prior to Gaudete Sunday; however, we did not have time to do so this past weekend. Thus, yesterday, I mentioned to my husband that the children and I might do so. He said, "Go for it."

Around 3 o'clock, I could not bear the thought of not having our nativity out any longer. I made sure that everyone was dressed warmly and we all went outside. After working for a little while, I sent the majority of the children back inside due to the cold. Brendan and I worked diligently to get the figures positioned. Once Mary, Joseph, and company were all set up, we plugged them in and found that two wisemen and the shepherd did not light up. Since it was starting to get dark, we decided to head inside and replace light bulbs later.

When my husband arrived home, he was happy to see that most of our nativity scene was outside, but he stated, "You must be crazy setting that up in this kind of weather." I reminded him that he had said, "Go for it." He replied, "I didn't think you really would. It's cold outside." Little does he know that today his crazy wife is planning on not only replacing light bulbs, but hopefully hanging our star and a few lights, too.

I know that the temperature is below freezing, I know that there is snow and ice on the ground. I know that my loving husband walked to Mass on Sunday because I did not want him driving the car on the ice. I know that I probably should have gone grocery shopping yesterday because it snowed last night, our groceries are low, and I am petrified at the thought of driving on the ice that is sure to be blanketing our street thanks to the newly fallen snow. I also know that our nativity scene needs to be fixed and our lights need to be hung; AND this "crazy wife" would much rather do the latter then risk life and limb to venture far from the house in the freezing cold, icy weather.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Our Little Princess

Six Weeks Old

Make a Donation and Get a Christmas Gift

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Tuesday, December 02, 2008

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