Wednesday, November 30, 2011

No Pony November: Wrap-up!

With just a few hours left in the month and feeling confident that I will survive the day without a pony tail; I thought I would share a few thoughts.

Firstly ~ my thanks to Elizabeth for sponsoring this challenge, it was a funny way to remember and make an effort with myself and my appearance.

Overall no major new styles, having discovered I'm just not coordinated enough for the multiple bobby pin up-styles especially in the time I normally have before little ones are pulling at my hands.  But did pick-up a couple new fabric headbands which will hopefully make a more regular appearance.   This challenge was also a great incentive to get back in the habit of braiding my hair, which only really only takes a minute or two longer than the traditional pony tail.

So while the simple pony tail will likely make its appearance again, hopefully far less often.
My thanks again to Elizabeth of That Married Couple.

So how did your month go?

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Rediscover Advent: A book review

Rediscover Advent
Matthew Kelly
St. Anthony Messenger Press

     Rediscover Advent, the devotional by Matthew Kelly, provides a multi layered approach to the readings of Advent. With reflections taken largely from his earlier book Rediscover Catholicism each day have the citations for the readings of the day,  a reflection, a meditation with guiding questions and a prayer ~ while the reflection and meditation change daily the prayer is the same for the week providing a nice continuity. Theme for Week 1. is Hope, Week 2. Peace, Week 3. Joy, and finally Week 4. Love.

    While the readings for each day are provided and you are encouraged to read them, a pertinent quote for each day is provided from the readings if you don't have the time.  The readings and reflections would likely take one 10 - 20 minutes a day depending on whether you read the readings or not.  One area of puzzlement of the book is that while the citations for the readings of all three cycles are given for the Sunday readings, only one set of citations is provided for the daily readings and I believe there are two cycles.

For purposes of this review I read the book quickly ( several reflections at a time), but thinks the daily format would work very well for an individual or a family seeking a structured approach to prayer this advent which include the readings.  I like the weekly themes and the possible connection with the Advent liturgies; for example week three's theme of joy starting on Gaudete Sunday. I found the reflections interesting and very appropriate which is a little surprising coming from another book, and good food for thought in the meditation questions.  I definitely plan on rereading the book this Advent at a more pensive pace.

Was provided a complementary copy by Tiber River for my honest review, if interested please go to Aquinas & More for this and other books and movies.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Gratitude and Freedoms

"Freedom from Fear" (left) and "Freedom from Want" are two of Norman Rockwell's "The Four Freedoms" series inspired by FDR's rousing wartime State of the Union address in 1941. Reproduced in four consecutive issues of The Saturday Evening Post in 1943, the original paintings by America's favorite illustrator toured the United States, raising over $130 million for the war effort. (Norman Rockwell Museum photos

So often the modern Thanksgiving is depicted with Norman Rockwell's picture "Freedom from Want", and while I am certainly very grateful for all the wonderful food I get to enjoy and that adequate food and water is not a worry in my life or my families; as I think about all that I am thankful for it is the other freedoms which speak even louder to me.

The Freedom to Worship publicly and without fear of recrimination.  While everyone may not agree with me and some may be rude about it,  I go to Mass without worrying that someone might see me, and I can purchase books about my beliefs, even blog about them.

Freedom from Fear: While fear is not completely absent from my life (don't really think that is possible), as I tuck my children in at night I don't worry about bombs falling, that the water I cook and feed my family with might be contaminated, or any of the other worries of those who live in war zones live with.

So as I count my blessings this week I seek to also remember the freedoms I enjoy!

Over at Virtuous Planet  check Sarah Babbs wonderful series on works of mercy

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Thankful Thursday; November 17th

  1. Making new friends
  2. Good health, Happy Half-Birthday to Me!
  3. My wonderful wacky family

Please visit The Road Home and share what you are thankful for!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Blogger Meet-up!

    A month ago I had the great and wonderful pleasure of meeting Rebecca of The Road Home, she very graciously stayed in the area for dinner with my family after her conference ended.  I unfortunately forgot my camera, though luckily Rebecca did have hers.

     However she has now experienced the frustration of misplacing her memory card reader and the worse luck of having her car burglarized and camera stolen ~ but we are undaunted by whatever force does not want evidence of blogger meet-ups shown.  Forgive the quality of my  phone camera pictures and please take my word for the fact that Rebecca is gorgeous and Liam was very happy to meet/play with her.  

"For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst." Matthew 18:20

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thankful Thursday: November 10th

  1. Lovely warmish autumn weather ~ which allowed for a fun trip to a local garden to play in treehouses and explore a water castle.
  2. Crock pot dinners filling my house with yummy scents.
  3. The leading number being a 6 today on the clock as we started our day: aka Lisbeth finally showing signs of adjusting to the time change!
  4. Our lovely host ~ Rebecca of The Road Home

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Why I love My Husband: Vol 5

  1. He brings me chocolate when he returns from business trips
  2. His faces absolutely lights up when the kids run/crawl to him at the end of the day
  3. His commitment to our church home/family

Inspired by Kaitlin of More like Mary ~ More like Me

Friday, November 4, 2011

Quick Take 96: Week in Review

1. Halloween was a fun and festive time, both monkeys went trick-or-treating with the older delivering her lines beautifully and at about half the houses remembering without prompting to say thank you, and the younger tolerating not only wearing a costume but being strolled around the neighborhood wearing it.

2. Don't even want to discuss snow in October other than to hope all those still without power ~ have it restored very soon.  Joking aside, the half inch we got simply proved fun for the 3 yo, bemusing for the 1 yo, and useful reminder to their mom that snow boots needed to be ordered.

3.  We enjoyed lovely weather more representing Autumn the rest of the week and so on a couple afternoons indulged in the highly traditional activity of raking the falling leaves into a large pile and than jumping into said pile before relocating into leaf bags.

4. After her time in front of the camera, Lisbeth insisted on some time behind the camera ~ fair enough, fair enough.  

5. As you can maybe tell from the above picture; so far so'kay with the No Pony Challenge hosted by That Married Couple.  Four days in and so far I have not gotten really creative yet but am excited to try out some styling and check out some of the many ideas offered in this post.

6. Given the general craziness of early morning and that she had attended Mass the day before for All Saints I opted not to go with C. when he went before work on All Souls ~ right decision, but I'm glad he was able to go and look forward to a time when attending a daily mass won't be quite so challenging.

7. Was not able to attend my 20th high school reunion, but through the FB page organizing that a former friend is now a priest ~ so 'friended' on FB and am now enjoying his pictures from the Holy Land.  Sometime life is so random and so fun.

Have a good weekend and please head over to Conversion Diary to enjoy other Quick Takes

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Thankful Thursday:November 3rd

  1. Confirmation that Liam can hear, and a plan in place to help him hear better
  2. Friends and family stayed safe during the recent storm despite falling branches
  3. Sunny, crisp afternoons to rake, jump and walk amidst the falling leaves
  4. The Communion of Saints, the forgiveness of sins,....
My thanks to our host Rebecca of The Road Home