If you know me, you know I love celebrations. But, I have to be honest, I grow tired of special days set aside for this and that. In my house we celebrate each other daily – I mean – maybe not with presents, etc. I hope you know what I mean. Sometimes my attitude about things doesn’t mesh with societal norms – but I have to be honest – I’m ok with that.
So many beautiful women have influenced my life. Truly – from my Grandmothers, Aunts, Cousins, Sisters,,, to many friends and acquaintances that have become family-like. I’m so thankful for each and every lesson, example, piece of advise, every book you have written, every way you have inspired me, etc. I just want to make sure you know I’m thankful for you all EVERY DAY, not just today.
With that, I actually did a google search wondering if others felt the same. There are so many reasons that the Catholic Church/Faith fits me so well. Check this out:
While the world may celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8th every year, these saints prove that the Catholic Church celebrates women’s day every day of the year. Check out these women and how they impacted the Church! 25 Women Saints Who Prove Every Day is Women’s Day!
Thank you EPIC PEW!!!
I’m not going to pontificate about being a woman/mom means to me… instead, I am going to leave you with a few quotes from my favorite Female Saints:
And Let us not forget our Blessed Mother, who taught us to Trust God, Say YES to Him, gave birth to Our Lord! There could be no better example on International Woman’s Day than a young, innocent girl who risked it all and gave us EVERYTHING! Amen!
Happy International Woman’s Day. Wherever you are – be blessed. If you have influenced me and I love you for it – I’m sure you know.
How I wish I was a more regular blogger. I will make attempts to do better, and stop apologizing. Because I’m bored with the apologies. HA I hope you are all well. Life is life… Sigh. Hugs.
Today is Shrove Tuesday. Do you know what Shrove Tuesday is? Fat Tuesday, Shrove Tuesday, Mardi Gras – they all mean the same thing. Today – historically – WAAAAY BACK. People would empty their pantries of eggs, milk, and sugar so that they could fast for 40 days of Lent. In my house, one wants pancakes and the other wants waffles. I’m low carb, so I will figure it out. LOL Breakfast for dinner is NEVER a bad thing though. Information about traditions below.
Tomorrow – we kick of Lent with Ash Wednesday – this year we will be sprinkled with Ashes instead of receiving on the forehead. UGH But we know everyone is doing the best we all can. Of course, NOTHING I ordered for Lent is here. But never fear, let me give you a list of Free or Inexpensive Lenten Printables. This way, if you are in the same predicament with mail (with all the weather in the states, the delays must be similar), you can still get your Lenten Plan together. Here are a few things I love:
Plus I have a couple books here with readings and devotions for Lent. I’m disappointed that the NEW hasn’t shown up, but it’s ALL GOOD! Catholics are versatile and able to overcome. LOL
Now – I think it’s ok to show you a few Valentine’s Cards I sent to lovely folks I know.
Card #1 –Card Recipe Stamps: Sweet ‘N Sassy Stamps: Some Buggy Loves You, Texture Tiles 5 and Texture Tiles 7 Paper: PaperTreyInk, StampinUp, and Scrap DP Ink: Jet Black Amalgam Ink-Gina K Designs, Various Copic and Spectrum Noir Yellow Sparkle Pen. Embellishments: Blue Scrap Ribbon
Directions:I have bins with scrap paper and precut layers in it. I stamped the X’s and O’s on a piece of chartreuse paper (PTI) and I believe the DP with dragonflies is from StampinUp. I just layered it and tossed some ribbon on. I wish I’d have taken a picture of the inside, because I stamped Happy Valentine’s Day, and Somebuggy loves you! Put it all together with tape adhesive and dimensionals.
Card #2 –Card Recipe Stamps: Sweet n Sassy Stamps: Kitty Image – from Lots of Love, Sentiment from Valentine Critters, and Background from Rose Background. Paper: PaperTreyInk and StampinUp Ink: Jet Black Amalgam Ink from Gina K. Various Copic Markers, and Wink of Stella Embellishments: Pink Scrap Ribbon.
Directions:I cut and layed out layers from scrap paper. I stamped the Rose background and colored with comic markers… then I used the teeny hearts from the Sweet n’ Sassy Donut Worry set and stamped in various colors with SU Ink, and used a water brush to move the ink around to give a little dimension. I stamped the kitty and colored her with Copics, then put it all together with tape adhesives and dimensionals. Scrap ribbon from my bin. Easy Peasy.
Card #3 –Card Recipe Stamps: Sweet n’ Sassy Stamp Sets: You & Me, Donut Worry, and Texture Tiles 9 Paper: PaperTreyInk and StampinUp Ink: Jet Black Amalgam Ink from Gina K, Various Copic Markers, and Stampin UP Inks: Baked Brown Sugar, Early Espresso and Soft Suede. Embellishments: Red scrap ribbon.
Directions:I stamped the coffee words image on a scrap of ballerina pink paper, and stamped the coffee and donuts in various browns, and sprayed with water for a spill effect. I colored the main image with copic markers and used a piece of pink/red gingham paper for a layer. Then I added the red ribbon and put it all together with tape adhesive and dimensionals.
It was one of my funnest evenings in a long time. Music, mess and fun! I get messy in my craft room. I hope to do it more. Anyway – I got them into Military Post, but who knows when the receivers will receive.
We’ll talk about Lent tomorrow. Ash Wednesday Y’all.
Happy Monday! Happy 24th Day of 2021! I hope it’s going well so far, for you.
I’m sorry it’s been three weeks since I’ve blogged. What you need to know about me is – when I get worried or life gets busy, I don’t tend to come to my blog. Why? Because I don’t have a lot of nice things to say sometimes. The boredom of not working and being shut down in a foreign country, the lack of Mass and normalcy, and all the political and COVID news has stunted my brain. Our home is full of angst-ridden people. Sigh.
Take heart… there is so much HOPE! Today we celebrate the Conversion of Saint Paul. And I have to say, when I was reading this morning about him, I was reminded how awful he was to Christians. He sought out Christians to have them out to death for following Our Lord. And as I sat there reading about his conversion in The Acts of the Apostles, I thought to myself – “Look what God did with Saul/Paul! There is HOPE FOR ME!”
You know, my WORD OF THE YEAR is TRANSFORM (Thanks @Jennifer Fulwiler). And while I know it must seem lame to y’all that I just can’t get it together, I can assure you that it’s no joke to live it. When Mama is out of sorts – the house crumbles, y’all. Sigh. And while I am working hard to remain positive and get things done, I also keep things REAL!
After much prayer… it’s clear that this is the year of ME. Now wait a minute – you know, if you follow my blog that I do many things for everyone else, to the point that I don’t always get done what I need to get done. I need to take a step back from humanity… and I need to get healthy mentally and physically and take back my life a little bit. In a way that may sound selfish but is completely necessary. God has really put on my heart that I need to transform the way I live… the way I think… the way I pray…. I need a conversion of heart and mind. In all the woes of life, I really have lost sight of my purpose. Which sounds entirely ridiculous. But it’s true. Things I am working on in my conversion…
Putting Catholicity First – Living Liturgically — in a way that we have not done here.
When we homeschooled and were super plugged in to our great Parish in Fort Worth, it was so easy. But the transient Military Catholic Church is not the same. Sigh.
Revamp my prayer life.
Get mentally and physically healthy
Get back to Blogging for the Lord
Get back to working a job (any job)
Get back to crafting more. I miss it.
I think part of my exasperation comes from feeling separated from Jesus in the form of the Eucharist… Yes, we do say the Spiritual Communion, but I feel like HE IS MISSING from the Mass when we watch from home. Because of our lack of Eucharist and Sacraments, I believe we ARE distant from our Faith – in a way that I can only describe as climbing a mountain that keeps getting taller. You just can’t reach the top. Sigh. We do go to Mass every couple weeks. And we count ourselves blessed to be able to receive Jesus. Pray for Us!
Funny enough, my SAINT OF THE YEAR is ST. TERESA OF AVILA. It is not lost on me that she is the patron of People in Need of Grace, amongst other things. People are always saying, “Emily, you need to give yourself grace!” Sigh. Part of my giving myself grace is transforming myself back into a more organized, self-healing kind of lady. I’m going to spend my year getting to know her.
Back to Saint Paul’s Conversion… if you are feeling low, and full of angst, anger, doubt about faith, our world, and other things. Put yourself on the path to Damascus with Saul (now Paul – Paul is the Greek translation of the Hebrew name Saul, fyi) and ask God to help you transform whilst you walk with Him. God took a murderous atheist that was hunting Christians and not only forgave him but converted him into one of the Apostles, and builder of His Church. And God will certainly come to us when we call on him as we walk our own continued conversions. But it’s up to us to listen for and act on God’s plans for us. We must learn to control our thoughts. We must put our pasts behind us. This is the hardest for me. But it hit me today that I am JUST AS FORGIVEN and malleable as Paul. And I am so thankful for the Saints before us and their great and HOLY examples.
I am hopeful and determined today, Dear Ones, and I hope you are too. No matter what – Jesus loves you. Walk with Him!
I’ll be back soon. Love, Hugs & Blessings… Lady Em
Pretend, if you will, that today is January 5th and I remembered to post my Gospel Reflection. Sigh – clearly I did not. But First, a picture of my husband, in who’s honor I chose the January 5th Date. LOL We tried to make his 61st Birthday special and I think we succeeded. We ordered take away for dinner, had some neighbors stop by for a drink, and I made his favorite cheesecake. We are on lockdown, so the decor is brought to you by packing tape and streamers, and craft wax markers I knew I could clean off the windows – HA!
The Apostles were heading to a quiet retreat with Jesus to go over their mission work and discuss the murder of John the Baptist. When they saw the throngs of people waiting hear Jesus preach and to be served, how do you think they reacted? Sure, they knew that the people were hungry for the truth about who Jesus was and what He could do for them, but, disappointed at not being able to spend time with just Him, they probably thought “Please leave!” Sound familiar?
Jesus knew His Apostles were weary, and He had to have been grieving and in need of a break as well. However, the moment He saw the crowd of people, Jesus knew that He must lead these “lost sheep” and teach His Apostles to be shepherds…and so He taught us all.
As evening fell, the Apostles became worried about food for the crowds. They were looking for a practical, worldly solution and Jesus found a heavenly solution. Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, raised them into the air, and called on His Father, Our Almighty God, to ensure there was enough to eat.
We all know the story about Jesus feeding five thousand, but do you understand what it means to us as Catholics? It’s an introduction to the Eucharist. The endless Body of Christ, that we partake in and which sustains us above all else.
Jesus knows there are many lost souls in this chaotic world. Sometimes it’s me (you too I suspect). Yet He will stop every time and shepherd us back onto the path towards eternal life with Him, and He calls us to do the same for others. I cannot imagine a more perfect gift to us and am thankful for what this passage teaches us.
Ponder: When we are weary and in need of rest, we are often presented with arduous but godly work. We must learn to look to Jesus for a solution that He has gloriously placed within us: our gifts and talents. Think about how you have grown spiritually through serving His lost sheep, when all you want to do is rest.
Pray: Dear Lord, I praise You for bringing me through trials and tribulations that I can now help others through. Let me see You in others so I don’t miss an opportunity to serve Your lost sheep.
Anyway – Please subscribe to the Daily Gospel Reflections on Catholicmom.com and leave comments.
Also – Happy Feast of the Epiphany. I’m not a big fan of moving Feast Days to the nearest Sundays for convenience. We do so much for convenience, our Faith and important days should NOT cater to the “convenience” of society. My opinion. And so – today, on the 12th day of Christmas, I wanted to wish you a fantastic rest of your day and year.
May everyone seek our Lord, every day, as we use each day as a clean slate to start again.
One of the ways I’m kicking off 2021 is to participate in the Pantry Challenge with Jessica at Good Cheap Eats. The dates are January 1-31! I’ve been doing this for at least a decade. I love her blog because I get her logic. She helps me see what I am doing right, wrong, and what I can do better. The Pantry Challenge is a fantastic season that my family looks forward to twice a year.
I would love to invite you to go to her blog, read about it, and subscribe. When you subscribe, Jessica will send you the tools you need to participate. It’s been different for us here in Italy. My pantry and fridges/freezers are full because of extra holiday purchases, and we have set some attainable goals for this Pantry Challenge!
We will stick to our meal plan.
We will only grocery shop every 2 weeks…
When we do, will will only buy dairy, produce, paper/personal items.
If we don’t have it, we will make it! That happened today!
We will repurpose food and use up our frozen foods.
With the exception of Marque’s birthday, we will not eat out…
All of the things on my list will either save us time or money. In the states, there are coupons, and sales fliers, etc. here in Italy, not so much. We did find a store called AdHoc, which is similar to Costco. That has helped with meat costs, etc.
Here’s a pic of my pantry:
Beside my fridge (to the left of this pantry), I have a dry erase calendar where I place my meal plan, and a dry erase empty square where I write my grocery list. During the Pantry Challenge, we take stock of the meats and dry items we have… and we use our imaginations to make it all last at least a month, sometimes longer.
January 1st we had our traditional New Years Meal. Pork roast (because a proper ham is not common here), black eyed peas, greens/cabbage. Leftovers today, the 2nd, and tomorrow (the 3rd) we will have shrimp tacos.
Earlier, I said we needed something we didn’t have, so we made it. So here’s the story. We love the Pioneer Woman’s Shrimp Tacos, and they call for Mexican Tomato Sauce. Usually we use El Pato, but we ran out and they don’t sell it here. So we made it from this recipe – Mexican Tomato Sauce.
One of the things I have learned from Jessica @GoodCheapEats is that you can make just about everything from scratch… and it’s such a benefit. I’ll let you know how the shrimp tacos turn out.
We’re excited! Come play along… get organized, use what you have…and save money! AND let us know how you do!