Monday, 30 April 2012

Bye-Bye Hair

Today's my last day with long hair.  I had to psyche myself up for this since it took me so long to grow it out, but I'm ready.  I really am, I promise.  It's getting hot, and it takes so long to fix it.  And honestly, my original plan was to grow it out to donate it, and became vain and attached to it.  Time to let it go.  Here are a few looks I'm thinking about.  And no, I'm not dumb enough to think that my hair will look as good as either of these beauties, but I must have something to shoot for right?  Let me know if ya'll have suggestions on looks you like for me.  I'm open to suggestions!

Quinn Fabray from "Glee"
Back View

Katherine McPhee

Another style

Can't Win for Losin'

8 years I've tried to shop for my husband.  He rarely likes things I buy him.  I have quit trying to buy anything for him but J Crew, and it kills me to spend the money so I always have to wait for the big sales.  I still only have about a 50/50 chance of getting it right.   I came home from TJ Maxx the other day with some clothes for my giant 12 year old.  I had the clothes lying on a chair for him to try on.  In walks Dad who says, "Cool shorts, are these for me?"  Seriously?  We all know that if I had bought those shorts for him, he'd have hated them.  Can't win for losin'.

Monday, 23 April 2012


WILL YOU FOLLOW ME?  Even if there's nothing to give you stability?  Even if you can't understand where I'm leading you?  Even if you must wait for the things you desire?  Even in the darkness?  Will you risk your incarnation to follow the mystery?...Will you follow me into the Wilderness?  -Paula D'Arcy from The Gift of the Red Bird

This is the message I got last week in this book I was reading, and I believe this is God speaking to me.  The answer to him, is YES!!!  I WILL FOLLOW YOU!!  I feel like we have been on such a crazy, adventurous journey over the last 2 1/2 years.  Between me and Tadd we have been through 4 new jobs, 4 houses, homeschooling for the first time, and going on our second out of state move in a year.  What is so funny, is that I've remained peaceful the whole time.  I know my Lord is leading me, and who am I to question any of it?  I see His fingerprints on every single thing we've been through (hindsight is 20/20 you know?!).  

So now, we are moving back to Franklin.  Very unexpectedly, Tadd got a call from his old company (2 jobs ago), offering him a job back in TN with a much smaller territory, and completely manageable for our family.  We prayed, fasted, sat before the Blessed Sacrament in Adoration, and got our answer.  YES, WE WILL FOLLOW YOU!!!  Wanna talk about His fingerprints?  Two days after Tadd turned in his 2 week notice, his current CEO sent a letter saying they had sold the company.  Had this new opportunity not happened, we would likely be in a situation where he would have to find a new job.

Every morning, I offer my day to God (actually twice, because I do it before I get out of bed, and again with my kids after breakfast).  Here's what we say to Him:

(Me)  Prayer of Abandonment
Father, I give myself to you.
Do with me as you will,
for whatever you do,
I thank you;
I am ready for all.

Let only your will
be done in me
as is done in your creation;
I ask nothing else.

Father, I surrender;
I place myself in your hands
because you are my Father
and because I love you;
Into your hands 
I commend my spirit.

(Kids)  Morning Offering
Dear Lord,
I offer you today,
and all I think and do and say.
Help me to be better on this day
Than I was yesterday.

Now, let me just say that it is really easy to pray this, but not so easy to live it and believe it.  I'm not saying I'm totally there, but after years of doing this, I'm getting closer and closer to believing the words I say.  The more I say those words, the more peaceful I am about the roller-coaster of events that happen in my life.  The more I surrender to Him, the more He gives me the desires of my heart.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Made for Me

Sunday, 1 April 2012

The Holiest of Weeks

I can't believe that Holy Week is upon us. This Lent has been a definite contrast of wonderfully Holy and incredibly challenging. As a whole family, we have given up sweets and potato chips (even the little kids). I know lots of folks don't make their little ones give up things, but we have always done it...they don't know they have an option! I figure this makes it easier when they are older to have always had to sacrifice!

Today is Palm Sunday. As we were out in front of the church having our palms blessed, Hadley whispered to me, "Mama, are these the palms they burn to put our ashes on our heads on Ash Wednesday." I said yes to her, but was doing a dance and singing praises inside. Thanks you Jesus! Occasionally, she does listen to me, and sometimes it sticks! Anyway, in the Catholic Church, we read the Passion during the time of the Gospel reading. The congregation reads the part of the crowd. It never fails, every year, I get teary when I have to read that part of the cruel crowd. Yelling, "Crucify Him" literally makes me sick to my stomach. But then I started thinking, isn't that what we are saying every time we sin? Yelling, "Crucify Him?" It made me sad. This whole week makes me sad. But it also makes next Sunday all the more beautiful!

So here are some of the things our family has done this Lent. They all fall under the ideas of Lent which are fasting, praying and almsgiving. Here is the website where I get most of my ideas. They have some wonderful ideas.

The first pictures are of our almsgiving project. These are pennies taped on a purple cross. We started with 40 pennies (one for each day of lent). The kids get to take one penny off a day and put it in the box in the next picture. We used a wipes container that they decorated. On Easter Sunday, they'll get to take the pennies to Church and put them in the offering basket. And do not judge my uncovered electrical outlet right next to the projects. My kids are past the "sticking fingers in sockets" age.

The next is just a calendar. This was Hadley's last year, and it's E's this year. It is a little caterpillar that travels along the lenten calendar. On Easter Sunday, he'll turn into a butterfly as a symbol of new life.

Next are our sacrifice beans. There are two jars/glasses and one started out empty. Each time the kids make a sacrifice over lent, they can put a bean from the glass to the jar. They are able to see all of the sacrifices they have made. Then on Easter, the beans will be replaced with jelly beans.

For our family prayer time, we have implemented a litany of Saints which has been really fun for the kids. We also watch Holy Heros videos 3 days a week and do the coloring sheets and crossword puzzles. Can I just say that my kids have learned more during Advent and Lent from the kids in these videos that I have taught them all year at home?! Kids learn really well from other kids. Just an observation. And for our last family prayer activity, check out the precious family pic below. This is our family of the week. This is from an Advent tradition we've started this year. Each week (for the whole year), we pick one Christmas card from our stack and pray for that family the whole week, several times during the day. The kids love focusing on that one family all week and they love taking turns drawing a new card each week!

I hope you all have a very holy "Holy Week" as we walk through the Passion of our Lord and meditate on His death and resurrection. Oh, and one other thing (I learned this on Holy Heros...I guess adults can learn from kids too); we are supposed to get all of our chores around the house done by Wednesday. That way, you can really spend time with our Lord during the Triduum. So get to cleaning!