"Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it done unto me according to thy will." ~ Luke 1:38

Thursday, March 29, 2018

March On...!

Living Lent (and Loving Lent), with two children in college and one child in middle-school, has been a very interesting and a very self-revealing journey.

My motivation is stemming from another place, I am finding a different path to His grace.  I would not say that it is easier, in fact, it feels harder to keep to the traditions of the past.  Silence is always a good start.

"Speak, for your servant is listening."  1 Samuel 3:10

March is a month that is sometimes solemn, not in a grim or dour way, but in a ceremonious way.  March is a month of sincere preparation.  

I love decorating my home for all the seasons and for all the major feast days.  It is a cue to remind me and my family what we should be celebrating, and what we should be focusing on.

This coming Easter will be extra special.  We are celebrating two very important events.  Preparing for the big day is exciting and joyous.

But First...we enter into the Easter Triduum, with whole-hearted faith.
However you may prepare, always remember to Keep Love in Lent.

May your Holy Week be filled with His Love, Mercy and Grace.

~ Valerie

Friday, March 2, 2018

Back-Blogged...and New Beginnings

It's not that I have not thought about this space, in fact, I have given a lot of thought about my little cyber-journal.

Where do I start back up again? 

Among other things, one of my New Year's Resolutions was to start journaling here once more.  Since I started an IG account, It had been much easier to keep that as my journal.  Sadly, I have been neglecting this space.

Let's just begin.  I thought I would share a few images of what has been going on lately...

Project, and more projects!

Taking down wallpaper (from the original owners) is not fun.  Before and after pictures, are fun.  However, we are currently in the 'middle phase' of this project...I will be sure and share the after pictures when all is complete.

Horrible lighting, Wonderful freshly painted room.

I am making headway on my painting projects.

Speaking of projects...

Little Lamb has been busy working on several badges and awards for AHG.
Serving the community is something that we feel called to do. 
This was our third year, as a family, to chair an event for our Diocese...

I will end this entry with a daily prayer from the Order...

"...Be it mine to practice charity towards my neighbors
Especially the poor and sick
Give me the strength I need
To carry out this my resolve
Forgetful of myself
Learning ever from Thy Holy Gospel
A spirit of deep and generous Christian devotion
Striving ever to promote God's Glory..."

~ excerpt from the Prayer of the Order of Malta

~ Valerie

Friday, September 22, 2017

Autumn Tea Leaf...My Cup Overflows

This picture reminds me of changes that have taken place in the past month and a half...it's a bit of a blur, but filled with goodness and blessings.

Even when the days seem to be made of struggles and uncertainties, we can rest assured that God has the overall plan in our best interest.

Upon returning from our trip to Japan, I visited my mother who had been admitted to the hospital...she had fallen and broken her hip and was now 'recovering' in a nursing/rehab center.  What was supposed to be a month long recovery to independence, turned into a nightmare.  Her health took a drastic turn and it seemed we would lose my mother.

Sparing the ugly details, I removed my mother from the 'care center' weeks early. I moved into her home, where I would become her full time caregiver and therapist.

My years as an Occupational Therapist paid off.  I could not only offer her professional treatment, but attentive and loving care 24/7 to bring her back from her torment.

Today, this first day of Harvest, she is walking outside with me and enjoying the crisp air and warm sun on her face.

It was not without pain, perseverance, sacrifice, humility and tears.

In the past month, my daughter has left for college.  This is her first year out of the house.  I haven't really had time to feel the emptiness of her presence in the rooms of our home.  Her beauty.  Her laugh.  Her smile.  Her loving and gentle hugs.
My beautiful Butterfly

I miss my Butterfly and my heart is mixed with so many emotions.

I am filled with excitement & happiness for her.  I know that she will grow in the Lord and strengthen her Faith.  She will gain wisdom and knowledge through life experiences and academia.  She will make life long friends and build upon her character.  She may meet her future husband, or learn what God is calling her to do...how to serve Him, now and in the future.  She is a precious child of God, and I love her to the heavens and beyond.

In a few days I will return home.  I will resume my full time position as wife, mother, and keeper of my home.

Soon, I will be reunited with my garden, and my silly and sassy dogs.  I will decorate my home with things of autumn.
I will praise Him with every detail in my life.

My time with my mother, and my father, has been such a blessing.  My cup surely overflows with God's good love.

God is so good.  
He allows us to know, love and serve Him through those around us.  
He is always giving us the opportunity to reap His Harvest!

"Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, 
for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.  

You prepare a feast for me in the presence of my enemies.  
You honor me by anointing my head with oil.  My cup overflows with blessings.

Surely your goodness and unfailing love will pursue me all the days of my life, 
and I will live in the house of the Lord forever." 
~ Psalm 23:4-6

Monday, September 18, 2017

School Send-Off

Even though my oldest two are (now) away at college, this mama still enjoys rejoicing with the start of a new school year...and I hope to continue to include all my children in one fun and simple tradition.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Harvest, Autumn, Fall...

I am giving thanks and feeling mighty grateful for another season of Autumn...my favorite season!

The months and years are slipping by...and now, I have another graduate.  She is away at college, thankfully in California.  This mama is happy about that!

And so a new Academic year begins...

Blessings to all our homeschool families, students and teachers everywhere, and college students near and far...

"But those who hope in the Lord, will renew their strength.  
They will soar with wings like eagles; 
they will run and not grow weary, 
they will walk and not be faint."  
~ Isaiah 40:31

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Re-Post of Give-Ups

Hi, there.  Lent, here.

Still searching for 'things' to give up for Lent?

Here is a quick list of some wonderful sacrifices...

I will pray for you...will you pray for me?


Tuesday, February 28, 2017

February & St. Valentine Decor

Do you know the history of St. Valentine's Day?

Similar to St. Patrick's Day, it is now celebrated in the secular realm.  It is primarily celebrated with cards, chocolates, roses and romantic meals...and all these exchanges occur with your special someone, your love, your spouse or friends or children.

Cupid is also a symbol of the sweetheart day.  In Latin, cupid means Amor or Love.  Roman and Greek methology have a Cupid and Eros.

In Holy Scripture, Angels (or messengers) are mentioned several times.  And in Summa Theologica, St. Thomas Aquinas describes the Nine Choirs of Angels.
Catholic Online describes them very nicely here.

Angels and cherubs are scattered throughout my home, not just in February, but all year long.  I love them.

I remember exchanging Valentine Cards in grade school.  It was both fun and embarrassing for me at the same time.

This year, I received this little card from an acquaintance at my parish.  It was such a kind and sweet gesture.  I admit I was a little annoyed when she passed the cards (one each for my daughters as well) to me, because it was seconds before Mass was to begin.

Once I saw what was gifted to me and my loved ones, I was humbled and struck with a certain joy.

Sometimes, little acts of kindness can melt a hardened heart.

"In the silence of the heart, God speaks..."   ~ St. Mother Teresa

Anyway, now that February is at its final day...I extend to you all a very Happy VALentine's....From: Me  To:  YOU!