Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Beautiful Solemn High Mass at Carmel for the Annunciation and Lady Day Feasting

O GOD, Who didst will that Thy Word should take flesh, at the message of an Angel, in the womb of the blessed Virgin Mary, grant to Thy suppliant people, that we who believe her to be truly the Mother of God, may be helped by her intercession with Thee. 

While I was at Mass our older girls made Lady Day Swedish Waffles! (Sean and three of our teens are in the choir and went to our parish’s evening Sung Mass.) You can find the recipe for these waffles (as well as an AIP version!) in the archives or over at Catholic Cuisine.

"This is Våffeldagen or Waffle Day in Sweden. One website said the name Vaffla, meaning waffle, originated from Var Fru, Our Lady, and that in time the two words became slurred and corrupted, first into Vaffer, then to Vaffla. The waffles are served with whipped cream and lingonberries (or cloudberries)... " 

You can read more in Jenn's post on Lady Day Feasting over at Catholic Cuisine.

We were out of our usual Marionberries and Marionberry Jam (they are harder to find here in Idaho) but this Strawberry Pinot Noir from Oregon Growers is amazing!

I also pulled out one of my favorite Catholic picture books! "Maura Roan McKeegan's Old and New Series teaches biblical typology to children through fun and fascinating stories. By presenting the Old Testament type side-by-side with its New Testament fulfillment, the Old and New Series helps unlock the hidden mysteries of Scripture for children." 

I've blogged more about this series of books here, here, and here.

St Mary, the New Eve Block • The End of the Fiery Sword: Adam & Eve and Jesus & Mary

St Mary, the New Eve Block • St. Gabriel the Archangel Patron Saint Block
The End of the Fiery Sword: Adam & Eve and Jesus & Mary

“The Blessed Virgin is like a good mother who, not content with looking after all her children in general, watches over each one separately.” 
- St. Jean-Marie Vianney

Saint Joseph's Day

We had our first St. Joseph Altar in our new home on the feast of St. Joseph!

The "tavola di San Giuseppe" (St. Joseph's Table or Altar) is an Italian Catholic tradition. You can read about it over at Catholic Cuisine along with descriptions of some of the foods that are usually included.  Back in 2009 we made a craft version and I explained the tradition to our children. The following year we made our first edible altar! You can scroll through all our past St. Joseph posts here.

I hadn't planned to even do the St. Joseph's Altar this year. However, after months of praying to St. Joseph for his intercession, our house in Oregon officially closed escrow on March 12th (such mixed emotions!) and it’s been a huge relief to pay off/down our loans and be back to just one mortgage. (Thank you for all your prayers for the sale of our old home! We actually took it off the market at the end of December to do a few more little projects and revise the marketing plan and then re-listed it following another painful price reduction on February 4th. We accepted a full price offer on February 8th!) Anyway, after finishing up work and school work that morning, we decided we needed to pull together a celebration for his feast!

Ever since our move and this new pregnancy, the only big feast day celebrations that have been happening at home are the ones that mean the most to our children (patron saints) and the ones that they are willing to help with. The feast of St. Joseph is always one of their favorites (cream puffs are always included in the menu!) and it is our 11 year old's middle name-day, my middle name (Jo) and both of my parents names (Patrick Joseph and Josephine) so we have lots of extra devotions to dear St. Joseph around here!

It actually all came together quickly and easily! In the afternoon, once the baby fell asleep, Rose and I made a quick trip to Trader Joes while some frozen dinner rolls for the kids to shape were defrosting. Meanwhile Chiquita baked a spice cake in our "cathedral" cake pan since St. Joseph is the patron of the universal church. We picked up fruit, drinks, flowers (red, white and green for the Italian flag), and some Italian desserts. When we got back home the all shaped a few rolls, and then the three oldest left for golf practice while I finished setting up the treats. The food maybe took an hour to prepare - bake rolls, boil pasta, bake fish (12 fish for the 12 apostles!), and make an AIP pizza - so not much longer than I generally spend making dinner. While I cooked the little ones rounded up all our St. Joseph themed toys, statues, and all of their St. Joseph holy cards from their holy card albums. Finding some of my candles was the biggest issue... I couldn't remember where they were packed/unpacked. I am still adjusting to living in a new home after nearly 19 years in our old home!

Traditional Breads in Symbolic Shapes

IHS Candle from Saong Jai • St. Joseph from Naturally Catholic

St. Joseph, Husband of Mary, Pray for us! 

St. Joseph, Foster Father of Jesus, Pray for us! 

St. Joseph the Worker, Pray for us! 

We pulled out St. Joseph Holy Cards and Holy Cards from the funerals of Loved Ones to place on our St. Joseph Altar.
Grapes • Host & Chalice • Nails • Ladder • Chalice • Saw • Lily 

St. Joseph, Patron of the Dying, Pray for us! 

Sacred Heart • Scapular • Cross • Crown of Thorns • Monstrance and Host • Butterfly
Fish • Candle • Rosary • Star

St. Joseph Patron Saint Block from Almond Rod Toys

St. Joseph, Patron of the Universal Church, Pray for us! 

Pope & Swiss Guard Set from Naturally Catholic

Prosciutto & Fig Bistro Pizza (AIP/Paleo) 

Saint Goals T-Shirt from Annunciation Designs

I keep getting teary eyed every time I start thinking that this could be the last time I have our two older boys, who will both be graduating high school this spring, at home for many of these feast days... Please keep them in your prayers as they discern where they will be heading in the fall!

"However many saints you have as your intercessors, be especially devoted to Saint Joseph, who can obtain a great deal from God." 
- St. Teresa of Jesus

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Celebrating the Feast of Saint Patrick

After Sunday morning Mass on March 17th, the feast of St. Patrick, we headed back home to make our annual Shamrock Cinnamon Rolls for with Sunday brunch, then get started on our Irish Beef and Guinness Stew and Irish Soda Bread. ☘️

I hadn't done much to prepare, other than order each of the kids and our priests St. Patrick's Day Potatoes and grocery shop the day before.  It is so nice to have a house full of helpful teens who want to pick up my slack when it comes to some of their favorite family traditions/patron saint feast days, since I haven't been feeling very well or had much energy this pregnancy.


We all made sure to wear green and our oldest son had his underneath his Mass shirt. One of my brothers-in-law (Fr. J Gordon) sent Sean and I each a "Can't Keep Calm I'm Irish" t-shirt, but my pregnant tummy isn't fitting into t-shirts very well these days so I let our oldest son have mine.

The Rhymed Life of St. PatrickSt. Patrick from Naturally Catholic

While the girls shaped and baked the Shamrock Cinnamon Rolls (also pictured here and here) and decorated Chocolate Coins with images of St. Patrick, I read some of The Rhymed Life of St. Patrick from our March Book Basket/Cart to the little ones. ☘

Sean made another amazing Paleo Spinach and Bacon Frittata to go along with the Shamrock Cinnamon Rolls.

The boys hung a couple flags from the second floor interior balcony, turned on some Irish music, and volunteered to make this year's Irish Beef and Guinness Stew and Traditional Irish Soda Bread. I wasn't able to make it for St. Patrick's Day last year (since I spent that weekend at the hospital with my brother's family - Happy birthday up in heaven to sweet little Millie!) so the boys ended up teaching themselves to make those particular recipes last spring while the rest of us were in Arizona visiting my mother-in-law. They're becoming quite efficient in the kitchen!



It all turned out beautifully and delicious!
(Ora et Labora Apron can be found over at Catholic Cuisine)

St. Patrick T-Shirt from Totally Catholic Tees • March Picture Books

Reading the sermon for the day from our copy of the Sermons of the Cure of Ars
which was recently touched to the Reliquary containing The Heart of a Priest

☘️ St. Patrick, pray for us! ☘️

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Paint by Number :: Spring Birds

Karribi Paint by Number Kit for Adults and Children 

Mary Undoer of Knots T-Shirt from Catholic T-Shirt Club
Get a free $10 credit for Catholic T-Shirt Club when you buy any subscription. 
Use coupon: REFSNYRV9UFS3

This beautiful paint by number was a gift from Grandma Murphy last year for her, at her bird themed 13th birthday party, and she finally had a chance to pull it out and paint! I think I'll have to order her one or two more from the series for her 14th birthday next month.

Happy First Day of Spring!