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

Friday, November 30, 2012

St. Andrew's Novena Begins Today

Hail and blessed be the hour and moment at which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight in Bethlehem, in the piercing cold. In that hour vouchsafe, O my God, to hear my prayer and grant my desires (Mention your intentions here) through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ, and of His most Blessed Mother. Amen.

(It is piously believed that whoever recites the above prayer fifteen times a day from the feast of St. Andrew until Christmas will obtain what is asked.)

+Michael Augustine, Archbishop of New York
February 6, 1897

Update: Lena has made it easy for us to remember to pray this novena by designing a printable novena card.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

What We've Been Reading - November

I wasn't very good about keeping track of what we read this month.

Preschool - Second Grade Read Alouds

A Bargain For Frances by Russell Hoban

Bible Stories for Little Children under the approbation of Cardinal McCloskey (excerpt here)

Blaze Finds Forgotten Roads by C.W. Anderson

A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson, illustrated by Tasha Tudor

Cinderella illustrated by K.Y. Craft

Cranberry Thanksgiving by Ende Devlin

Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear? by Nancy White Carlstrom

Miniature Stories of the Saints by Rev. Daniel A. Lord, SJ

Mousekin's Thanksgiving by Edna Miller

Over the River and Through the Wood by Lydia Maria Child, illustrated by Brinton Turkle
The Tale of Timmy Tiptoes by Beatrix Potter

The Tale of Tom Kitten by Beatrix Potter

The Thanksgiving Story by Alice Dalgliesh

Second Grade

Caps for Sale: A Tale of a Peddler, Some Monkeys and Their Monkey Business by Esphyr Slobodkina

Goody O'Grumpity by Carol Ryrie Brink

Fifth Grade

Baby Island by Carol Ryrie Brink

The Bobbsey Twins of Lakeport by Laura Lee Hope

The Disappearing Staircase Mystery (Boxcar Children) by Gertrude Chandler Warner

Galewood Crossing by Alta Halverson Seymour

Outlaws of Ravenhurst by M. Imelda Wallace
Theresa liked this book so much last month that she decided to reread it this month.

Sixth Grade

North American Wildlife by David Jones

Eighth Grade

Between the Forest and the Hills by Ann Lawrence

Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott

Galewood Crossing by Alta Halverson Seymour

Kisses from Katie: A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption by Katie J. Davis

An Old-Fashioned Thanksgiving by Louisa May Alcott, illustrated by Holly Johnson

The Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien, edited by Christopher Tolkien
We have an older edition of this book.

Tenth Grade

Galewood Crossing by Alta Halverson Seymour

The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare (We read this play together.)

Modern Saints: Their Lives and Faces by Ann Ball


The Dyslexic Advantage: Unlocking the Hidden Potential of the Dyslexic Brain by Brock L. Eide, M.D., M.A. and Fernette F. Eide, M.D. 

The Mirror of True Womanhood by Rt. Rev. Monsignor Bernard O'Reilly, D.D., L.D.

We and Our Children by Mary Reed Newland

Read Aloud

Around the Year Once upon a Time Saints by Ethel Pochocki
Patrick really enjoys Ethel Pochocki's sense of humor.

Men of Iron by Howard Pyle

Saint Dominic and the Rosary by Catherine Beebe

Saints for Young People for Every Day of the Year by the Daughters of St. Paul


I checked these audiobooks out, so that I could listen to the stories. Please note, I do not feel that they are appropriate for young children.

The Innocence of Father Brown Vol. 2by G.K. Chesterton, read by David Timson

The Wisdom of Father Brownby G.K. Chesterton, read by Frederick Davidson

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Multiplying Love

"I am so happy that my mom is pregnant.
Every time my mom has another baby,
the love in our family grows."
~ Katheryn Lyon ~

These words were shared with me by a 15 or 16-year-old girl shortly after learning that her mother was pregnant. When I first met Katheryn, she was the oldest of eight children. Today, she is the oldest of twelve children, married, and the mother of two children (so far). When I first met Katheryn, I was the mother of two children and her words made my heart sing because I knew the truth behind them.

Today, as the mother of eight children, that truth is even more real to me. I see the love when I walk into a room and find my oldest son reading to my youngest daughter. I see the love when I hear my five year old praise my seven year old for his reading. I see that love when my oldest daughter helps in the kitchen without being asked. I see that love when I hear my second oldest daughter cuddling with and talking to her youngest brother. I see that love when I discover my oldest son playing a board game with his younger siblings. I see that love when my fourth child helps her brothers with their lessons. I see that love when my fifth child brings me breakfast in bed. I see that love when my baby looks at his daddy and says, "Da Da." I see that love when my youngest daughter comes into the room and tells her youngest brother, "I love you." I see that love in a myriad of ways each day.

Open your heart to life. You won't regret it. As my pastor says, "You cannot possibly outdo God in His generosity."

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Laudamus Te

On Sunday, I was delighted to finally see a copy of Laudamus Te, a new magazine for those who assist at the Latin Mass. Our pastor surprised many of us when he announced that he had ordered a bulk subscription to the magazine for our parish. I had been toying with subscribing to the magazine, but had not gotten around to doing so yet.

Our pastor described Laudamus Te as a Magnificat magazine for those who participate in the Extraordinary Rite. Margot Davidson (of Hillside Education), Therese Warmus, and Theodore Schluenderfritz write,
It is the mission of Laudamus Te to bear witness to the sublime beauty of the ancient Latin liturgy, to foster renewed devotion to its merits, and to aid the faithful in entering more deeply into its sacramental mysteries.
Based on the first issue of the magazine, I think that they are succeeding in their aim. I couldn't help pouring over it in on our drive home, sharing one of the poems with my family during Sunday dinner, and looking at it more before bed.

I am looking forward to using Laudamus Te during Mass and at home this Advent, and throughout the liturgical year. 

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Plea for Intolerance

America, it is said, is suffering from intolerance. It is not. It is suffering from tolerance: tolerance of right and wrong, truth and error, virtue and evil, Christ and chaos. Our country is not nearly so much overrun with the bigoted as it is overrun with the broadminded. The man who can make up his mind in an orderly way, as a man might make up his bed, is called a bigot; but a man who cannot make up his mind, any more than he can make up for lost time, is called tolerant and broadminded. A bigoted man is one who refuses to accept a reason for anything; a broadminded man is one who will accept anything for a reason—providing it is not a good reason. It is true that there is a demand for precision, exactness, and definiteness, but it is only for precision in scientific measurement, not in logic. The breakdown that has produced this unnatural broadmindedness is mental, not moral. The evidence for this statement is threefold: the tendency to settle issues not by arguments but by words, the unqualified willingness to accept the authority of anyone on the subject of religion, and, lastly, the love of novelty.

~ Venerable Fulton Sheen, Old Errors and New Labels
The above quote comes from the chapter titled A Plea for Intolerance in Ven. Fulton Sheen's book Old Errors and New Labels. Since the election, Fr. Saguto, our pastor, has been sharing passages from A Plea for Intolerance in the parish bulletin. Now, he has kindly shared A Plea for Intolerance on our parish's website. The chapter is applicable to today and well worth reading in its entirety.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Applesauce and Cinnamon Christmas Ornaments

We've been making these ornaments since my oldest was three years old. We don't make them every year, but we will need to make some this Advent, as Heidi chewed several of them last year.

What You Need:

  • 1 ½ cups ground cinnamon 
  • 1 cup applesauce 
  • ¼ cup white non-toxic school glue (optional; if you decide not to use glue, then increase the applesauce by ¼ cup) 
  • Bowl 
  • Plastic food wrap 
  • Rolling pins 
  • Wax paper 
  • Cookie cutters (We use a set similar to this one.)
  • Ribbon, yarn, fishing line, etc. for hanging 
  • Straws


  1. Mix cinnamon, applesauce, and glue together in a bowl. The dough should be as thick as cookie dough. If the dough isn’t thick enough, add a little more cinnamon. If it is too stiff, add a little water. 
  2. Remove dough from bowl and knead. Put it back in the bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let it sit for a half hour. 
  3. Remove the dough, knead again until it is smooth (the smoother the dough, the better the ornaments look). Roll the dough between wax paper so that it is ¼ to ⅛ inch thick. 
  4. Cut out desired shapes with cookie cutters. Use a straw to punch a hole for the ribbon to hang. 
  5. Carefully place the shapes on a piece of clean wax paper. Turn the ornaments over regularly in order to prevent the ends from curling up and help them dry evenly. They will take about 5 days to dry. 


The ornaments will get smaller during the drying process. 
Once the ornaments are dry, acrylic paints may be applied, if desired. We do not paint our ornaments.
The ornaments make our house smell delicious.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Fall Violin Recital

On Friday, Bernadette participated in her fall violin recital. She played Air Varie by Charles Beriot.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Christmas Books

Each year for Christmas, the children receive a Christmas-themed book. As our older children have grown, we have moved away from giving them picture books. Some of the "chapter books" that they have received and liked are:

The Birds' Christmas Carol by Kate Douglas Wiggin
We have a different copy of this book.

Christmas by Alice Dalgliesh (out-of-print)

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens, illustrated by Arthur Rackham

The Family Under the Bridge by Natalie Savage Carlson, illustrated by Garth Williams

The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry

The Lion in the Box: A Christmas Story by Marguerite de Angeli

Maggie Rose, Her Birthday Christmas by Ruth Sawyer (out-of-print)

The Story of the Other Wise Man by Henry Van Dyke

Take Joy! The Tasha Tudor Christmas Book by Tasha Tudor

A Tree for Peter by Kate Seredy

The Trees Kneel at Christmas by Maud Hart Lovelace

The Year of the Christmas Dragon by Ruth Sawyer
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