Monday, October 15, 2012

{CWA} ~ October 15, 2012

Moments of Gratitude
~ sticky lollipop hands offering me the last little bit
~ teaching Joe the finer points of scoring in football...(he doesn't care, but know that daddy and I he listened and is taking it in)
~ sweet helpers at the grocery store who make my child laugh at just the right moment
~ prayers whispered and sung

From the Kitchen and Pondering about Beauty in the Ordinary
....there is this Chicken coconut curry in the crock pot and simmering on the stove is this Lamb stock (thanks to the bones from our CSA).  Later in the week, we may have a fritatta. 

As I talked with my friend Colleen this morning, I mentioned that clearly, my mind and heart are wrestling with some very loud fears. I know this, because my sink and counter tops and stove are working at full capacity. When I am overwhelmed, I cook. There is healing and grace that comes from chopping and slicing and boiling....  Motherhood, this beautifully raw vocation that I have chosen and desired astounds me with the force of it. How it can wrap my heart in a love indescribable and yet bring me to my knees with the pain of it.... And so as I attempt to make sense of it all....I cook. 

And as I do, there is a prayer card tucked against the windowsill behind a rock that Joe gave to me years ago from a walk in the woods. This is the image I see:

And this is the prayer:

O Mary, Mother of the Unborn, protect the gift of human life which your Divine Son has allowed to be given.

Give strength and joy to all parents as the await the birth of the precious child they have conceived.

Give courage to those who are fearful, calm those who are anxious and guide all of us, with your motherly care, to treasure and protect the miraculous gift of human life.

We ask this through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. Mary Mother of the Unborn, Pray for Us.

...for continued grace to just allow life to flow as it should as I watch my children become who they were meant to matter how long it takes, or how hard the struggle. To just enjoy the journey. I am not called to measure myself or my children against anyone else. (But how do I tell that to my heart?)

...for our country...that we come to recognize that all life is Sacred... (how have we come to believe that children are expendable? or that we can just choose to not allow them to live? I just don't understand. We can do so much better.)


Abraham, A Journey to the Heart of Three Faiths
Secrets of Eden by Chris Bohjalian ... for some reason, this author has completely captured me lately. This is the 5th book of his that I am just devouring....


I have to share this picture from 2 weeks ago when we went to the blessing of the animals. Our wonderful Deacon Eric, Joe praying and holding tight to our dog, Cleo. And then there's Maximilian, checking in on our kitties, Han, and Sasha. (His comment, "Day get wawa too?" just melted all of us.)

Sharing with the beautiful women of Suscipio

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Fall Hike....

To maintain a joyful family requires much from both the parents and the children. Each member of the family has to become, in a special way, the servant of the others.
~ Pope John Paul II

There just never seems to be enough time, does there? I could have spent all day outside with these two.... This world just spins too fast, and it is necessary to take time to squeeze out every ounce of joy.

Oh this little face.... How I wish that time could 
just. stand. still. 

And as the time came to go home, and tired little feet just couldn't make it up the hill, I loved the tenderness of father and son. The complete trust and adoration just melted my heart. I followed behind, blinking back tears, and attempting to drink in the memory and burn it into my heart.....

Monday, October 8, 2012

{CWA} ~ October 8, 2012

Moments of Gratitude

~ Joe's unbridled laughter while watching Victor Borge 
~ Tom bringing me a cup of coffee with just the right amount of sweetness
~ blessing of the animals at our parish
~ praying the living Rosary with Joe at school
~ hearing Joe teach Max the Hail Mary line by line... with patience
~ phone calls from sisters
~ e-mail from mom and dad while they are in Sicily

Beauty in the Ordinary

My climbing rose blooming at the top of the gutter.... ;)

From the kitchen

~ Butternut squash soup (without the heavy just doesn't need it, and neither does my figure)
~ Roasted pork loin (never got to it last week...)
~ Something warm and apple flavored....maybe this?



"America you are beautiful . . . and blessed . . . . The ultimate test of your greatness is the way you treat every human being, but especially the weakest and most defenseless. If you want equal justice for all and true freedom and lasting peace, then America, defend life." ~ Pope John Paul II


~ Oh. Still lots of prayers happening here for our country.
~ Also, for an increase in civility with one another.... We need to be able to disagree without such anger and hatred. The internet, unfortunately, has often become a weapon of words....
~ For my sister Katie, as she celebrates her birthday tomorrow. Love you, sis. xoxo

Captured ~

My son, Joe, captured this picture of Mrs. Romney as I was holding a very wiggly Max..... Even though our little group didn't have a ticket, she came over to us to say hello. She was incredibly kind and gracious...

Gratefully sharing with the beautiful women at Suscipio today

Thursday, October 4, 2012

{PHFR} ~ October 4, 2012

{ Pretty }

This is our sweet kitty, Han (as in...Han Solo of course). I just loved the way that his stripes looked as I walked past the dining room. On this, the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, I wanted to show how lucky we are to have this stray as part of our family. 

{ Happy }

On a recent sun-filled day, Max and I spent almost the entire time outside. Not only did the sunshine make me happy, but oh, this child who wanted to "dwaw" and "wawa pants" just made my heart sing. 

{ Funny }

As we celebrated my nephew Charlie's Baptism, I couldn't help but capture this picture of his brother, Peter. Before we headed out to the cathedral, there were tornado warnings and it POURED. Luckily, we all made it safely, but with boots on, of course! 

{ Real }

 There is nothing more real to me than the Sacraments of Initiation. These pictures of Charlie's Baptism invoke in me the powerful love of God and human connectedness. My cousin Jason was recently ordained a deacon and was able to celebrate this Sacrament... What a gift. And although these pictures don't show my sister Katie, Charlie's mama, I loved the connection between my cousin Julie, Charlie's godmother, and Charlie.... 

Sharing today with Like Mother, Like Daughter

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Dreaming of the Sea..... a letter to Tom

"The sea does not reward those who are too anxious, too greedy, or too impatient. One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach--waiting for a gift from the sea."
- Anne Morrow Lindbergh

(See this? This is soul-stirring for this crazy wife of yours....)
Dearest one, 
  How I feel the need to ask for your forgiveness.... To let you know that I know that I have been a little bit crazy-yelly-monstrous  ...overwhelmed.... lately. Please, please understand that it is not because of you, or in spite of you, or because of things not done. No. Rather, it is this yearning-dreamer heart of mine that gets in the way of daily life. Getting stuck in the rhythm only, and not helping to increase the joy. My life is truly peopled with the most wonderful of human beings. 

     How selfish I feel that I so completely drank in the deliciousness of those 2 days away with you for our anniversary. (17! What?! Weren't you just coming to visit me at college last year?)  The time spent with you was a gift in itself because it again reaffirms who WE are matter. The US is so good. And to take me to the ocean? Perfect....... 

     I kept snapping pictures of these two chairs because, well, they reminded me of us. Windswept, weathered, together. Turning towards the sun and back again to the sea as the wind shifted. 

   So with the ocean in my mind and you on my heart, here is what I have done today..... With every pass of the vacuum, a prayer was whispered. With every toy and random item picked up, there was thanks given......With every sock placed in the washer, I prayed for whomever it belonged to....

~ For you, that you would have peace in your heart. 
~ For Joe, that he would be able to continue to love those who make fun of the quirky delight that he really is. 
~ For Max, that I would never, ever cease to delight in the wonder of his life.....)

     And so, as we continue to look to our God and to each other, I want to say that I do thank you for grounding me...

     Just know that the dreamer-wisher in me? Well. Even though I may talk about the roads I want to travel, or the places-by-the-sea where-I-could-live, what I truly desire is to have you alongside me for the ride for forever. Maybe I haven't told you enough, but dreaming of the sea does me no good if I cannot have you there....

With all of my heart, for forever,

p.s. Um. Here is the perfect example of life lived joyfully. As I type this, Max is on my lap with sticky peanut butter hands laughing at the picture above. "Daddy walking. Bye!!!" Pure joy here. Truly.

Monday, October 1, 2012

Catholic Woman's Almanac ~ October 1, 2012

Moments of Gratitude
~ time at the beach with my Tom to celebrate our 17th anniversary
~ time to meet with Misty over coffee and pastries...and meet "in real life" this beautiful friend 
~ time to play with Max and laugh at the funny things that he does and says
~ time to explore friendships, new and old....

Beauty in the Ordinary

From the Kitchen
Chicken meatalls
Sweet potato fries
Creamed spinach

Later this week....
Potato-bacon chowder (with freshly dug potatoes from our CSA)
Rosemary/Basalmic-Pork tenderloin

~For this beautiful country of ours as we look to the election....and most especially for the respect for all life....
~For my parents and their fellow parish members on their pilgrimage to Sicily....
~For Colleen and her dad as they pilgrimage to Medjugorje
~ For Joe, as he continues to navigate the intricate maze of school, friendships, and


Listening to

Dying Young Soundtrack
Sesame Street


My sweet brother-in-law, Eric, and his Godson, Charlie

Gratefully sharing at Suscipio today....
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