Thursday, October 27, 2011

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real ~ {Unique perspectives}

{ pretty }

Yes. I realize that it is a worm. But do you KNOW what these little ones do for my garden (and yours)? Whenever I see a wriggly earthworm, I recognize it as a pretty little gift from God to help my garden grow. A pretty gift covered with dirt. I like that.

{ happy }

One of my greatest childhood memories is climbing trees. Oh how I loved to grab a book and snuggle into the arms of the neighboring oak tree (and I was devastated to learn that it is now gone).... SO it made me so very happy to see that Joe has really taken to trees as well. I found him in "his" dogwood out front. I also loved that I had to call him several times to come in for dinner....smiling the whole time because I *knew* what it felt like to not want to leave the safety of a tree. 

{ funny }

I truly should have taken a video of Max on the swings. The hysterical sounds and laughter made me laugh as well.... I think that you can see his funny personality here.

{ real }

Mail. Actual surprise-in-your-mailbox-look-who-took-the-time-to-think-of-you mail. My college roomie, Paige, sent me this sweet chocolate bar and even sweeter letter. As soon as I post this, I am going to sit down and write her a REAL letter back. Real friendship. Real mail. Just. Real. 

~ Capturing the context of contentment in everyday life ~

Every Thursday, here at Like Mother, Like Daughter! 

round button chicken

Monday, October 24, 2011

Gratitude for Life ~ {Day 7}... #486-504

Life is beautiful. Truly. How lucky we are to recognize the incredible beauty around us, and to experience all that this life has to offer....


I have a confession to make. I really do not know what I am doing when it comes to blogging and seem to make more mistakes than anything else. At times I am frustrated because that tiny perfectionisitic part of me is just sad that things don't look like they should, or the words do not flow quite as freely. Stumbling around seems to be the status quo for me lately. (In the blogging world as well as the real world.)

And yet. 

As the tears flowed as I read Misty's post this morning, I was once again reminded of why I am doing this. (It seems that I owe a lot to her. Several times, she has lifted my heart. Thank you, my friend.)

I do know that there are things that I want to say. There are words and phrases on my heart that are bursting to be let out. 

So despite the sometimes not-so-pretty blog posts, I recognize that I do have a story... and I am grateful for this life.

And more than anything else, I recognize the precious gift of life itself. I hope to never take it for granted, for I know that because I am alive, I can experience all of the silliness and yes, even the heartaches. I pray that our country will come to recognize the beautiful uniqueness that we humans are....beginning at conception....

Counting today with the gratitude community at Ann's...I am grateful for:

baby hugs from Max
singing "Wicked" songs with Joe at the top of our lungs
car rides filled with laughter
violins at Mass
sister time peppered with fabulous food 
Thai iced tea
laughing at Bobby
cousin love shown by Lance and Joe
long walks with my sister and children and nephews
cool breezes 
crunchy leaves underfoot
watching an earthworm bury underground
boys on swings
Cleo greeting us after a weekend away
neighbors who love our dog
the knowledge that human life is the most precious gift
crackling fires
Tom...who loves me anyway

Also sharing with the entire 31 days community

Friday, October 21, 2011

This Moment {pondering}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Come visit SouleMama and leave your special moment...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real {Mid-October}


We will be visiting my sister this weekend...and I remembered that I still had the baptismal gown that I borrowed for Max.... After washing it, I was struck by the sunlight as I hung it on the line to dry. Lovely.


Happiness is cousins and warm puppies, right? Our dog Cleo, my niece Lucy, and Joe. I never wanted their visit to end. They are all so good for each other.


Joe has a way of always entertaining Max, especially as I'm preparing dinner, and I am so grateful! This is the silliness that happened yesterday....


Lately, I have been very emotional about my family. I know that I only live an hour from my parents and my sister Rachel and her family....but it's still too far. I adore this picture of Max and Pop-Pop (my dad) doing "head butts". Family connectedness is so real.

round button chicken

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A video of Life.... {Day 6}

I often think about how it must have been "back in the day" when our mothers and grandmothers experienced their pregnancies without the help of ultrasounds. There is no doubt that they connected and bonded with their babies, and yet, I recognize how lucky we are to live in a time of technology that has allowed us to "see" into the womb and visually connect with the little one growing inside. 

There is a wonderful ministry out there called "Truth Booth", and you can find out more about it HERE. The following is information from their website:


A "Truth Booth" is an unmanned display showing 3D and 4D ultrasound images of the child in the womb. It provides information about pre-natal development and pregnancy in a visual form for people to process without cumbersome words or confrontation.
The "Truth Booth" is factual, scientific, creative, gentle and informative in its content presentation, allowing all age groups to comprehend our early development with clarity. It is simply pictures of the developing child, not a provocation for controversy.
The display unit is ideal for local shopping malls, schools or other public or private arenas.

Their mission is one of peace. Of hope. Of Life. And it is done in a gentle way that is also quietly strong. It clearly shows that yes, in the womb .... HERE. IS. LIFE. 

View the beautiful images of developing life...Here....  (And be sure to watch until the end. See the baby smile at week 34. Just lovely.)

Joining in with the 31 days community

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

5 Sites for Life ~ {Day 5}

One of the great things about the internet is that you can find all kinds of wonderful sites for life. Here are some of my favorites:

1 ~  Priests for Life
This site offers a wealth of information and support, and is actually a family of ministries, including prayer campaigns, Hispanic and African American support ministries. Here is how they describe themselves:

On one level, as described below, Priests for Life refers to a very specific effort to galvanize the clergy to preach, teach, and mobilize their people more effectively in the effort to end abortion and euthanasia.

On another level, Priests for Life represents a family of ministries that reach and enrich every aspect of the pro-life movement, for clergy and laity alike, in a wide variety of activities. This has come to pass precisely because priests are not ordained for themselves, but for the people.So in activating clergy, we are activating all the segments of the Church, the pro-life movement, and the wider society in the defense of life. 

We refer to this wider family of ministries as Gospel of Life Ministries, to indicate that what unites them all is the Gospel of Life, the good news that life is victorious over death!

So whether you are clergy or laity, young or old, active or inactive, and whatever your religious or ethnic background, you're in the right place if you want to do something to restore protection to the most vulnerable members of the human family!

2 ~  National Right to Life
This is an extensive website with a lot of information about legislation issues (past and current) and offers many links to other organizations.

Worldwide services for pregnancy centers, adoption options.....

We call our work “cross-bearing for the child-bearing.” This honestly and accurately reflects the genuine and generous sacrifice it takes to rescue real women and couples from the violence of abortion. Our affiliated pregnancy help staff and volunteers lay their lives down daily to provide life-saving help in a truly life-changing way. We are eager to bear this cross with them.

Oh how I love to see teenagers for life! This website is fresh and informative... A great place for teens and their parents to go TOGETHER to make a stand for life. A place for poetry, activism. A place for teens to find their voices. All rising for life. Beautiful.

And finally, what about the women and men who are suffering from the choice that they made to have an abortion? Here is a place that offers healing and reconciliation:

Friday, October 7, 2011

What if? ~ {Day 4}

It seems that the whole world is in mourning over the death of Steve Jobs. He was truly an icon. Someone who had a dream....and made it come true. 

How blessed we have all been by his fulfilled dreams. 
By his innovation. 
And his very LIFE.

Life. He was able to have one because his birth mother allowed for him to be born even though she was unable to take care of him. Another family, desperately seeking a child, was able to take him in, love him, and support him. 

I loved this article in the Wasthington Times

Especially the ending....   the author, John Paul Cassill, says:

What would a world look like in which Steve Jobs had been aborted?
Out of the 52 million abortions in the US in the past 38 years, how many other Jobs’s have we extinguished?
I find it amazing that we are STILL asking ourselves this question. We are still questioning whether or not   a baby in the womb is a a human being. We are questioning if it is a life. 
When are we going to wake up?!
Please continue to keep those women contemplating abortion in your prayers. They need to be comforted. To be heard. To be helped.....

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Life ~ {Day 3}

Pausing today to really pray for life.
 All life.
From conception to natural death.
All life is precious.
All life is gift.

 I ask you to keep this thought on your heart today:

“All who are genuinely committed to the advancement of women can and must offer a woman or a girl who is pregnant, frightened, and alone a better alternative than the destruction of her own unborn child” ~ Mary Ann Glendon, Fourth World Conference on Women, Beijing, September 5, 1995

Joining in with the 31 days community

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Life at 5 weeks ~ {Day 2}

Because I love learning about growth, whether it be in the classroom or in my own home, I am fascinated about how babies develop. I am fascinated even when I am unable to see the development in front of my eyes. I still wonder how it is that we are at the point of aborting 50 million human beings? Legally. And yes. They are human beings. 

One of the most interesting deceptions about abortion is that somehow the mass public has been led to believe that just "tissue" is being taken away. Think for a moment about these milestones:

  • Day 1 - conception takes place.
  • 7 days - tiny human implants in mother’s uterus.
  • 10 days - mother’s menses stop.
  • 18 days - heart begins to beat.
  • 21 days - pumps own blood through separate closed circulatory system with own blood type.
  • 28 days - eye, ear and respiratory system begin to form.
The fact that there is a unique blood type is absolutely amazing, isn't it? When a woman carries a child in her womb, there is a separate and unique human being. Science cannot dispute that. Call it by its scientific names....embryo....fetus.... But regardless, it is a human being. (Think of this. When we are so quick to save the whales, because of the loss of a baby whale (and do we question that it is a baby whale?), how come we are not clamoring to save the life of one baby human? And why is it that we question if it is human or not?)

As you go about your day, I ask that you say a prayer to the Author of Life to help us change minds and hearts:

Father of us all, Author of all life, I thank you for my life and the appreciation of it. Please help me to always respect the lives of all your children, from conception to natural death. Let your Spirit enlighten the minds and open the hearts of those who do not fully respect all human life according to your will. Where there is remorse, grant peace to all women and everyone affected by past abortions. Lighten the burdens of all women with problem pregnancies. Bring adoption of a Human Life Amendment soon. Thank you, Father. Amen

Joining in with the 31 days community

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

31 Days ~ For Life {Day 1}

"The promotion of the culture of life should be the highest priority in our 
societies...If the right to life is not defended decisively as a condition for all other rights of the person, all other references to human rights remain deceitful and illusory." 
Pope John Paul II

I believe that most people I know would say that I am a passionate person. I love my family and friends and my faith with an intensity that can overwhelm people and probably puts them off a bit. If your aren't careful, I may give you an unwanted hug or squeal a little too loud when I am excited for you. 

This passion, however, comes at a price. My heart is forever on my sleeve and I get deeply hurt and very troubled about many things. 

But honestly, the one thing that has always gripped my heart and soul with passion .... is the plight of the unborn children of the world.

Even our wonderful nation, the one that I call home, and the one that claims to be one of the most developed nations of the world is failing. Failing to recognize that it is the place of one of the world's worst holocausts.... We have allowed an entire generation to become non-existent because of two Supreme Court cases that should never have been upheld. (And the woman who brought it about? Jane Roe? Well. She regrets her decision. Painfully so. )

Over the next month, as I join in with a blog-link party, I am going to blog about this cause that I feel so passionately about. 

Let me be clear, because I recognize the passion on both sides of this issue, and have been caught up in some painful, heated discussions, I want people to feel safe about talking about this:

We should never condemn a woman for her choice ~ this is not our role.
We should never allow anger to enter in our discussion ~ that is fruitless.
We should never forget that healing and reconciliation are possible ~ our God is bigger than our failings.


We should continue to pray for those women contemplating abortion, and for their babies.
We should continue to pray for all of those women who chose abortion and for their children.
We should continue to ask for guidance on how to live in a world where it is legal to end a human life.... 
We should contine to bring awareness to this tragedy that is hurting women. And men. And children. 

With all that we know, with all the advances that we have made, how can we remain silent about this?! We need to raise our voices for the ones who have no voice.

Won't you join with me in praying about this, and possibly thinking of ways to fight this? 

Here is the link to The Entire 31 Days Community, a party that I am a little late attending, but attending nonetheless.  It is where you can blog about something that you are passionate about. Be sure to check out the many others who are putting words to their passions. 

(A big Hat Tip to my blogger friend, Misty, who is just a little more with it than I am... as I am following up on her suggestion to blog for 31 days. Please be sure to check out her blog as well!)

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