Ayla’s Special Day

“To live in love is to sail forever,
spreading seeds of joy and peace in hearts.” – St. Therese of Lisieux

It was a joyous day for Ayla – she received the sacraments of Holy Eucharist and Confirmation. She looked beautiful and grown up in her white dress, high heels and curled hair. The veil she wore was her Godmother’s on her 1st Communion.

Ayla chose Saint Therese of Lisieux as her confirmation saint. She seems to be drawn to Saint Therese – The Little Flower – patron saint of florists, pilots, missionaries, and priests.

I asked Ayla if she felt different after receiving her first Eucharist. She responded, “A little.” She also told me that the mass goes by quickly when you pay attention.

She is growing up in more ways than one and I was filled with hope and joy as I watched her confidently receive two special gifts from the Lord.

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Immaculate Conception – Mary’s Preparation to a “Yes.”

When you say “Yes” do you mean it? Often times my yeses are to my kids in a flurry of ice cream and Netflix. It’s a half-hearted, “Yes.” Then, there’s the “maybes” on Facebook events or the “next times” on invitations. We lead busy lives; it can be hard to commit.

Mary said, “Yes.” She didn’t say, “Let me think about it” or “Maybe next time.”

I know that there are things in my life that I say “Yes” to no matter what – intentional time with family and friends. Do you say “Yes” intentionally, meaningfully?

Just something to think about on this Feast of the Immaculate Conception.* God knew His plan and ensured that Mary was “full of Grace,” but without Mary’s intentional “Yes” we might not be free.

*Check out this video by Fr. Mike Schmitz for more information about this feast day, which is not to be confused with the the Virgin Birth of Jesus.

“The New Eve, Mary” by Annie at Paper Monastery 

Saint Catherine of Alexandria

We went to the 4 o’clock mass this afternoon and witnessed the baptism of my friend’s daughter.

This Saintly Saturday I thought I’d share Saint Catherine of Alexandria. She was martyred for her faith but not before her wisdom encouraged hundreds to convert. She was well-versed and spoke the truth with bravery. She is the patron saint of Lawyers, Librarians, philosophers, Students, Teachers.

My prayer is that newly baptized, Annelise, along with her sisters and my daughters, and all girls, will be encouraged to find their strengths and be brave to speak the truth. Most importantly, I pray they know they are beloved daughters of the one, true King.

Date Day and Outdoor Exploration

Ayla and I had a mother-daughter date morning visiting a few Christmas fairs and The Maine Harvest Festival. We laughed, bought some Christmas presents, watched a bee presentation and tried lots of samples.

When we got home we all went out to explore our wooded back yard. It was exciting to find deer tracks.

After a building a snowman and having a snowball fight, we went inside and ate supper together.

There is Hope in a day of smiles and love.

Today is Saint Elizabeth of Hungry‘s feast day, but for this Saintly Saturday take a look at Saint Maria, the wife of Saint Isidore the Farmer.

Beautiful Happenings

Beautiful happenings today. We woke up to a white blanket of snow on the ground. Avery was excited to go “scoop the snow” into a pile. Ayla made a decision to cut her hair – enough to donate to make wigs for children with cancer. In the afternoon we were able to visit family and friends while celebrating my sister-in-law at her baby shower.

I decided to introduce Saint Gerard Majella for this Saintly Saturday. He is the patron Saint of pregnant women, mothers and childbirth.

Saint Philomena

I’d like to share Saint Philomena for this Saintly Saturday. This 2nd century martyred saint is the patroness of babies and children. I chose Saint Philomena today because I was around lots of children at two Halloween parties and a housewarming party. The name Philomena means “Daughter of Light.”

How appropriate that she is the patroness of babies and children? Children bring so much light into the world. They have much to say, or, at times, only a little. They provide clarity by opening our eyes to what is important. Saint Philomena, pray for us, especially the children.

Saturday

We took the kids to a pumpkin painting event. I was so proud of them for diligently painting their pumpkins and being well behaved.

We then headed to my friend’s house where Avery was able to sit in a real excavator. He was beaming.

In the afternoon, Ayla, Avery and I walked down the street to a Halloween party. They were able to test out their costumes.

To top off this fun-filled day the sun was shining and the sky was blue.

The Saint for this Saintly Saturday is Saint Adelina, the Abbess of the Benedictine Convent of La Blanche. She was the granddaughter of William the Conqueror.

Old Friends and True Family

The kids and I had a busy day visiting family and friends. First, I saw an old friend I hadn’t seen in over a decade. She now has two beautiful children and they played with my children. Jesus brought us together and I’m so grateful. I’ve always admired Kate for her true peace. It radiates.

We then shared a snack of fresh apple pie with two aunts, an uncle and a cousin. A special time, although short.

We ended our beautiful day with a birthday party for another cousin. The kids played and we all ate cake.

Thai Saintly Saturday take a look at Saint Lorenzo Ruiz and Companions, who were martyred for their belief in Christ.

Our Lady of Sorrows

This Saintly Saturday is for the Feast of Our Lady of Sorrows.

“After your Jesus – who belongs to everyone, but is especially yours – gave up his life, the cruel spear, which was not withheld from his lifeless body, tore open his side. Clearly it did not touch his soul and could not harm him, but it did pierce your heart. For surely his soul was no longer there, but yours could not be torn away. Thus the violence of sorrow has cut through your heart, and we rightly call you more than martyr, since the effect of compassion in you has gone beyond the endurance of physical suffering.” -St Bernard of Clairvaux

Photo: Our Lady of Sorrows statue in Golgotha, Holy Sepulchre Jerusalem by Creisor