Wednesday, September 29, 2010

We Were Blessed By the Bishop

I should not boast, but it is always special to see the Bishop. I feel like it is something so special, that I am always sad when I miss an opportunity to see him. Our Bishop is a special man. Most Bishops are, I'll give you that.

This evening the Bishop came to our parish to bless all of the children who received Sacraments in the 2009-2010 school year. Two of the children received Sacraments, so we felt that reason enough to attend. Of course, a number of school trustees were there, numerous parish priests, the Knights of Columbus in royal garb, school teachers, principals, families and all were present. Even though we "home school", I felt that we should be there, at least some of us. The two oldest just started karate classes, so I let them go to karate and attended with the two little boys. I cherish the time with the little guys so much. A five year old is so funny on such occasions. Since the Bishop was wearing white vestments, I was continually asked if he was the Pope. The Knights of Columbus men were mistaken for real "knights", you know the kind that live in a castle. Anyway, you get the picture. Comical but just as Jesus would have expected. Child-like innocence.

He (the five year old) insisted that we spend some time with the Blessed Sacrament. Of course, I obliged. I love spending time with Jesus. But remember, a five years old's prayers are short, so I must pray fast and to the point. Everyone else was gathering around in the foyer to speak to the Bishop and get their pictures taken with him. Smart me, I remembered the camera. My shy little five year old and I got our picture taken with the Bishop. That was all he talked about on the way to pick up the "kids" from karate. "Don't tell the kids, I want to tell them that I got a picture with the Bishop." He always calls them "the kids". He also picked up one of those rubber arm bands in his sister's name because only the kids who received sacraments got one. He was offered one for himself, but he told the priest who was handing them out that it was for his sister because she received two sacraments. He told her all about it as soon as we picked her up. God is so good.

Little Owen loves Jesus so much and I absolutely adore his child-like innocence. I hope he never loses it. I really need to scan in his spontaneous sketches of the Sacred Heart, Rosaries and churches and share them with you. Please remember to pray for him and our whole family that God may always keep them close to his heart and perhaps choose one or all of them to have vocations. God Bless and thank you for stopping by.

Rosaries on a Journey

As mentioned in earlier posts, our family are members of the Totus Tuus Rosary Making Association. It sounds really official, I admit, but it is an amazing group. Our group made and distributed over 37,000 rosaries last year. We play a very insignificant part. We never seem to make as many rosaries as others in the group (some bring in grocery bags full). We attend group meetings less regularly than others do and we are not the prayer warriors that we would like to be. Nonetheless, we are members. The children especially love going to "Rosary Group" every Tuesday morning. They love to hear the stories about where the rosaries have been sent and see the pictures of them being distributed in Africa, Mexico and other remote areas of the world. The children work hard trying to learn the special knot used to make the rosaries. They are doing Our Lady's work here on earth. Even if we do not make the most rosaries, or pray the most, I hope that Our Lady will always hold us close to her heart. I hope that the children will remember when they are all grown up and have busy lives of their own, to pray the rosary and to promote it wherever they go. Right now, they just enjoy the atmosphere of the group and help where they can. This past Sunday, two of the children helped to sell rosaries after mass.

Last week, we were able to send 300 of the rosaries made with a dear friend Br. Paul on his journey across Canada. I know that Our Lady will see to it that they come to those in great need. I can't wait to hear from Br. Paul whom we gave them to and here about where the rosaries went. Please pray for Br. Paul on his journey for his safe arrival in Nova Scotia and for his spiritual journey as well. We were very fortunate to take a picture with him on his short visit with the Mary-Mobile and the rosaries.

If you are in need of rosaries or know of someone who is on a mission in need of rosaries, please let me know. I will pass your information along to the group coordinator. It doesn't cost you a penny. Please also pray for this apostulate. Continued prayers are needed for the success of this group. Success is not measured in dollars and cents, but rather in distributing rosaries to everyone who wants and needs one. These rosaries may be the only rosaries that some people will ever own.

Please pray the Rosary often.

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Seven Sorrows of Mary

We have added a new twist to our home school experience - Scrapbooking! I love to scrapbook, but don't have a lot of time to do it, so I have let the kids use some of my tools and supplies to enhance their learning. So far they have scrapbooked a number of pages for their portfolios. (We have to keep portfolios to show our facilitator during her visits.) We already notebooked and continue to notebook. We use this as a type of narration. The kids typically read from one of their books and then draw a picture and write a few sentences. Last week, for the feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, Mia had an assignment from her 3rd Grade CHC curriculum to use "A Year with God" to learn about the Seven Sorrows of Mary. This is what she made:

Thursday, September 16, 2010

My Baby is Seven Months Old

Yet another month has passed and my baby has grown a little taller, a little wider and a little cuter (well, maybe a lot cuter in my eyes). We love our darling Paddy-Cakers as we like to call him. I admit it is a ridiculous nickname, but it suits him well, for now. I didn't actually take a picture of him yet today, but here are a few from Sunday. Yes, the woolly hats have replaced the sun hats and warm fuzzy outfits have replaced the shorts and T's and even the fuzzy cover is back on the car seat for now. The second picutre is with his proud big brother, who not so long ago was our baby.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

End of Summer Woes

I believe that summer has officially ended here. I woke up this morning to a fresh blanket of snow. I don't know where fall went, but winter seems to be upon us. Really?!? It is only the middle of September. The weather has been chilly here all week and really soggy. The kids don't want to play outside and I don't really blame them. We have been plugging away at another week of school work and find ourselves right in the thick of things. I believe that my plans for school this year were a tad bit more than ambitious. We enjoy everything for the most part, but there just doesn't seem to be enough time to do it all. We have a freshly painted school room and some great new supplies, a new organization system and co-operative children, so what could go wrong? Well, everything and nothing. I think the kids are getting a great education regardless of my expectations. We learned about the Rosetta stone and wrote some awesome sentences in our guided writing, learned about the properties of matter and finished a few cool art projects amoung many other things. Actually, writing things down helps me realize that we did do a lot this week.

We can also see that it is no longer summer, when the Fall Fair has already come and gone. This is the first year that the children have participated in the Heritage Park Fall Fair. I made finishing their entries a part of "school". It was mandatory. I entered them in categories that I knew we could easily finish under the time contraints that a demanding baby and learning to cook and eat grain-free would allow. In total, the kids took part in 13 categories. Everything from soap-carving, drawing self-portraits, painting without a brush to making Christmas tree ornaments. The children placed in 11 of the 13 categories. The little guy even won the best of his sub-section for his entry of his marble painting. That won him a special ribbon, a Dinosaur Train dvd (we never watch it on tv and he happens to be a huge dinosaur fan), a book, a soft football, a pin from Country FM that lights up and blinks and 4 entrance tickets to Calaway Park. We still have to pay for one ticket, but those tickets save us $75 + GST. You can believe that we were quite proud of our little bunch. Here are pictures of some of their entries...

Owen's Potato Print
Owen's Marble Painting
Maria's Potato Print
Maria's Potato Self-Portrait in 1905
Noah's Soap Carving - Wolf
Noah's Christmas Tree Ornament
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