Friday, January 23, 2015

I Struggle With Anxiety


His cheeks were red, his brilliant, hazel eyes were laughing, and the chill of the
snow was radiating from his entire being. He was wearing winter from head to toe.

"Hurry! Put on your shoes and coat! It's glorious!
Go stand out there in the falling snow and talk to God!"


I just blinked at my husband, "are you for real?"

Child-like excitement buzzed in my chest as I slipped on my boots, mittens, scarf
to go play in the snow with it's Maker; to go BE, to go EXPERIENCE, something other than

myself.

I am my own worst enemy. Have been for as long as I can remember. The voices spin webs
of confusion, fear - and before I know it I've worked myself into an imaginary, sometimes not,
crisis situation. Panic. A struggle to breathe. Just breathe.

I romped through the snow, softly singing, "let it rain down... open the flood gates of heaven,"
as fluffy white flurries rushed to kiss away the tear drops frosting on my cheeks. Sometimes you can
just feel God. Sometimes He just shows up in radiant glory and says, "Hey, I've got you."

Those are crushing words to someone who tells herself, "I've got myself". Day after day, month
after month, year after year; thousands of minutes spent on a messed up theology. "Bless me, Father,
for I have sinned..."
I've been holding it together all my life because I bought the lie from a dirty
dealing demon that if I fall apart, my world will go up in a puff of smoke. To hell with it.

"Do you pray?" someone asked me this week.
"Yes," I replied - a little confused as to how this applied to my visit with the allergist.
"Fox hole prayers. In and out. Lip service. Never long enough to let Him change you," he chimed.
I could feel my eyebrows begin to furrow and a lump of "he's right" come up into my throat.

The next day I walked into a counselor's office for the first time in my life.
"Why don't you trust God?" "What happens if YOU let go?" "Things are out of YOUR control and
THAT freaks you out."
I just stared back at him, trying to keep eye contact in my guilt, feeling
overwhelmed by the truth of the matter, the core of my heart.

And I feel God pull back another layer, stoke the fire, and order a deeper refinement this time.
Gold. We are all meant to be pure gold.

I told my husband that I've been read like a book twice this week.
I thought I was more mysterious than that, but apparently not. Must work on that.

"I am anxious and worried," has fallen from my lips one too many times in the past few months.
Today I was challenged to say instead, "I am prayerful and active." Anxiety, has no place here.
Children of God are not children of darkness, but of light. Even in the darkest night, the enemy has no
place unless we give it to him.

This is a process. Life in general, I suppose. We all have "things".
But I think the trick to surviving this valley of tears is to truly realize once and for all
that there is a God and all of "it" - all the "things" - is the great RESCUE plan to pull us into Eternity.

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. My Father’s house has many rooms;
if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and
prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.
You know the way to the place where I am going.”
- John 14:1-4




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Thursday, January 8, 2015

My Son Stutters

I've hesitated over sharing this for so many months that I have lost count. It's one of
those things that just leaves your momma heart aching so badly that you don't want to speak
it out loud for fear that it will all suddenly become really real. Permanent. Forever.

Not my son.


How many nights have I stood at his bed rail while he sleeps watching his gentle breath, in and out,
wondering what those big, round, chocolate eyes veiled in slumber are seeing, dreaming? I've put my
hand on his head, his heart - letting every ounce of whatever grace is given to me as a mother
pour over him as I beg God, almost demanding, for an answer. Can You hear me?

The bonds of motherhood run strong, and I bear the weight of his cross as if it were my own.
I've lived out in my imagination every possible scenario and outcome for his life -- all laced
with fear and anxiety, rejection and misunderstanding -- potential crushed under the weight
of not being able to connect well in a world full of words.

The kids at the playground are impatient with him as their tiny attention spans cannot bear to
wait for the words to form and flow. I've seen them walk away. I've heard him mocked.

And my heart gets a real good glimpse at what it was like for the Blessed Mother to watch her
Son save the world. All you parents see. You know there's not anything within your power that
you would not do to breathe life and peace and joy into your child - even if it meant giving
up your own. It's a rugged, primal kind of love; welling up from the wild fierceness
that courses through our blood. Anything. Name it. I am yours.

I like to think that God is especially tender towards mothers. So I have asked and asked and asked
one more time, just in case I didn't hear the answer or missed some vital instruction.

Waking up one morning, about a week before Christmas, I looked at my husband and just said,

"I know what it is."

He asked me how I knew, but all I could do was shake my head, "I don't know, but I do."

If there were pieces to this puzzle, they all came together that day as I cleared my pantry of corn products.
Checking, reading labels - deep sighing - packing up everything with a trace to give away.

With each day off a major allergen, the stuttering has diminished; the frustration on his face melting
away with the excitement of being able to communicate more clearly. Words flowing where words have
not flowed before. I now watch my son happily chatter away with complete strangers, something he
avoided before, and light up as he tells his story. I light up as he tells his story.

Call it intuition. Call it the result of research. But I'm calling it a miracle.
I'm calling it for how I see it -- and that's God answering a mother's prayer.
Thank you. A million times over.

Today is better than yesterday, and I hope that this journey continues to bring healing into
my son's life. It just blows my mind that God turns His eyes towards us... at all. Here we are
in our pathetic, sinful state and He just pours life and peace and joy onto His children.

It's a rugged, primal kind of love.
Anything. Name it. I am yours.






FOR OUTSTANDING RESOURCES ON STUTTERING
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Tuesday, January 6, 2015

When you have no "word of the year"


The other night I cornered my husband,

"Soooo... there's this THING. It's called 'word. of. the. year.' -- all the coolest
bloggers are doing it, and I want to know what YOUR word would be. Just one word."


Inner monologue: PLEASE be a good word so that I can be a copycat. I'll say that I've
been so deeply inspired and post it for all the world to see. As mine. All mine. One word.

Well, this story pretty ends with my husband pensively thinking for a moment and then uttering
with Nathan-like wisdom: "QUADRUPLE." It then was followed by a short story on how it applies
to this scripture passage that has moved him... beautiful. But dang it. That can't be my word.
No one would believe me.

I ran some of my own ideas past him: COURAGE. RETREAT.

To which he just shook his head and told me that what I really meant to say was "TRUST."
That my word of the year should be "TRUST." That I have "TRUST" issues and should just face
the TRUTH and accept "TRUST." Sigh.

He reads me like a book. A beautiful, annoying gift. Such an oxymoron.

But maybe you are struggling too? Maybe the future looks too hard to predict and no word
from Webster is going to do that uncertainty any kind of justice. That's how I feel.

And that rings of fear. Thus COURAGE. And I need to re-group with Jesus about that. Thus RETREAT.
And my husband is always right - because after it all goes up, it comes down to TRUST.

My word last year was "LIFE" -- and God SO delivered on that. Like whoa. And there has been such
reward in what felt like a pact or promise between me and the Almighty. Call her Bella.
Last year was so easy.

And now, all I know is that THIS IS THE YEAR to dig down deep and uproot anxiety, fear, and
distrustfulness in all of its tangled mess. THIS IS THE YEAR to choose more live social interaction
over social media, to remember and celebrate the art of connection as I once knew it.

This is the first baby I have nursed since purchasing a smart phone. How easy it is to sit down
during feedings, get settled, and then scroll away our precious time by staring at the screen instead
of those sparkling blue eyes that look up--- that wait--- connection.

It's going to take courage, retreat, and trust.
It's not a "word of the year", but a lifestyle chant.
My fire is blazing, 2015.


Happy New Year, my friends.
What's on your heart?
















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Monday, December 22, 2014

Holiday Hiatus

This post could also be titled: "I had a baby and probably should take a break".
I just love blogging so much that I haven't been able to pry The Lily Field from my fingers.
But alas, Christmas seems like the perfect place to PAUSE.

I was at a conference with Shauna Niequist awhile back and someone asked her:
"What should we do to find inspiration for writing?"

She told us to step away from the "world" and go live our lives -- that the stories,
the memories, the moments created are what good writing is made of.
If you haven't lived, it's hard to share.

So here is to a few weeks of just BEING -- tuned in to Jesus, my husband (who is also
on vacation! PRAISE. the. LORD!), children, and all the family and friends we will be celebrating
with! Hopefully I'll be back with some good stories and happy memories to share!!!

Wishing you all a holy and blessed Christmas!!!
BRB

In the meantime, enjoy our "we need a Christmas card" attempt...

Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree by She & Him on Grooveshark
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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Childrenisms

A few months ago we started "paying" our kids for little odd jobs they volunteered to do
around house. I'm talking 10 cents for picking up the living room - they are like Merry Maids
or something, but WAY cuter and so affordable! Ha. 25 cents for helping Nathan change the piping
under the bathroom sink. You get the picture. Just a way to start teaching them the
concept of working, getting paid, tithing, saving, splurging, etc.

Our oldest is ALL OVER THIS. All day long I have to make up jobs to keep the kid satisfied.
They don't pay me enough. If it's possible, I'd say our 4 year old is a work-aholic and needs to take some PTO for the sake of momma's brain. And then he counts his money at night (he really is naturally
so diligent and I'm proud of him!) and proceeds to spend the next day begging me to let him buy the
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle action figure, Leonardo, that he just has to have or he's going to diiiiiiie.

Priorities.

If I had a dollar for every TMNT comment, I would have made at least 50 bucks yesterday.
No joke. His excitement is too adorable to squelch. We actually gifted him that coveted hero in a
half shell today in honor of his 1/2 birthday. He kept scream-chirping with the kind of excitement
that makes you want to be little again.

And then today I told the kids that we need to purge the toys because-- Christmas.
Because-- Grandmas and grandpas can't control themselves.

Me: "Let's pack up some of our older toys that we don't play with anymore and give them
to some kids who don't have any toys this Christmas."


Judah: "Mom mom mom... listen. If we give away our toys to the poor kids then WE won't
have any toys either!"


Wouldn't you love to get inside of their heads? See how they process things?
Because apparently "let's donate a FEW toys" equals "I'll have NOTHING" to my 3 year old.

He spent the better part of this morning wailing at the idea of us donating a Fischer Price
helicopter that he hasn't even SEEN or PLAYED WITH since he was 2. And the brief moment that
he thought I was giving away his blanket?! Mom is the Grinch, and my life is over.

But deep breaths, everybody. The blanket is secure with him in his bed for naptime.
For the record: I would NEVER, unless for a VERY good reason, get rid of that childhood token.
Avoiding that "worst mother of the year" title again this month. Booya.

Formation is hard. I'm pretty sure my stay-at-home-mom-job is way harder than my husband's
"I'm going to lunch sans children with a bunch of work buddies" gig he's got going! *wink*


Judah: "I peed! I peed! I peeeeeed my paaaaaaants!"
Me: "Bud, that's just apple juice."
Judah: **bends over and sniffs his own crotch** -- "that is DEFINITELY pee, mom."



Isaiah: "Can I see my first home?" (my tummy - the womb)
Me: "Um sure."
**Isaiah and Judah begin laughing hysterically.**
Me: "Hey, you have a tummy too!"
Isaiah: "Yea, mine is FLAT."
Me: **oh no he didn't**

Me: "We need to go to Costco."
Isaiah: "Mom, I don't have time for this."


Judah: "Will you fill up my water bottle?
Nathan: "I'll think about it."
Judah: "You'll THINK about it?"
Nathan: "I'll fill it up. Jaaaaay kaaaaay (JK)."
Judah: "JK? L-M-N-O-P?"

Me: "Bella is SO yummy."
Judah: "Like a burger."
Me: "Is momma yummy?"
Judah: "Like a HAM-burger."
Me: "How about Isaiah?"
Judah: "Like a NERD."


Geography is going so well...
Me: "Where do we live?"
Judah: "America. CAPTAIN America. It's the same thing.
Me: "Ooookay. Can you say 'CHICAGO'?"
Isaiah: "Yea yea yea we live in Chicago. Chicago BEARS! It's the same thing."

Me: "What would you like to be when you grow up?"
Isaiah: "A papa." MELT YOUR HEART.
Judah: "A chair."
Me: "No, like a JOB, Judah?"
Judah: "Yea. A CHAIR."
#dreambig

And then there's Bella. She doesn't say much. Yet.












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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Why We Will Not Be Sterilized


We were at the zoo, pressing our hands and noses to the glass of the crocodile exhibit.
I was noticeably pregnant, and a woman with her daughter asked the million dollar question:

"Do you know what you are having?"

Me: "No, we like surprises!!!"

"Well, hopefully it is a GIRL this time so you don't have to be pregnant again!"

Me: *fake laughing* - "Oh, we are just getting started!"

We've had variations of this conversation with at least a dozen strangers since my second
pregnancy. It doesn't bother me in the slightest way, but it never ceases to take me off guard!
You care that much about my fertility? And family size? AWESOME! You just won yourself a
roundtrip ticket to my "openness to life" speech!!! Muhahaha.

I might be exaggerating, when I fill in the blanks with these conversations, but it just
seems that people probably assume that either I or my husband will choose to be sterilized so
that I "don't have to be pregnant again." I mean, I'm 27 - but look like I'm 16 (right?!), I
can't imagine that they envision two decades of me on hormonal birth control?

Could be wrong.

A few weekends ago, my husband and I watched Lois Lowry's The Giver come to life on the
big screen. Being a literature buff, I was a tad disappointed in Hollywood's creative license,
but still overall impressed in the emotion they were able to capture and create.

After the movie was over, I just sat and stared at the TV watching the credits roll by;
winding up my scattered train of thoughts as it went.

If you're not familiar, in this literary dystopian world of The Giver, they take pills to
suppress emotion - killing the desire for intimacy and sex, among other things. Babies don't
come from the loving embrace of a man and woman, but are grown in women as a rule,
(don't really want to start an IVF argument here) from artificial insemination.

People live, grow, and die in a world where color, joy, feelings, love, all the memories of the past
are stolen from them. And it is all seen as a normal, good thing. Those in authority know what is best.
Still talking about the story here.

I looked at my husband, feeling the weight of that futuristic world on my own shoulders,
wanting to cry, and told him that I am so thankful that we still FEEL and have a CHOICE when it
comes to fertility and bearing children.
I can't imagine not knowing the goodness of the marital
embrace or the wonder of carrying the life that grows from there.

It is in the gift of being "co-creators" of life that we as humans are most like God - THE CREATOR.
I mean, I can't even wrap my mind around the incredible honor that God bestows upon us in the ability
to generate new life! We are talking bodies with SOULS - eternal souls for an eternal Kingdom!

Without going into any grand biblical, theological, or historical explanation or argument,
this is the heart of why WE have chosen to not be sterilized (or use contraception for that matter).

Nathan and I came into this world with the amazing gift of "sexual organs", for lack of a more
whimsical term, in perfect-ish working order (THANK YOU, LORD! - not taken for granted)...

why "fix" something that is not broken?

I can't imagine, purposefully, removing or stopping what God intended for us as man and wife -
the gift of "co-creating" with HIM in OUR marriage. The sterility in the world of The Giver,
coming full circle now!, seems so dark, heavy - too "lifeless" to bear.

Give me the color, the emotions, the desires.
Give me the ability to give and receive and be filled with LIFE from and with my spouse --

in the great mystery of God.

And I will give you 3 children and counting +++
Because, remember? - we're just getting started!!!



_________________________________________________________________

P.S.
If you want to comment, please be kind and realize this post is NOT meant as an attack,
but merely a reflection, testimony of a way of life that WE have chosen. This isn't about
"I'm right" and "you're wrong" -- and just because we might not "agree" does not mean
we still can't "love." Ok. End disclaimer. It's Christmas-time. Just spare me the hate mail.

P.P.S.
If you or your spouse have been sterilized and have ever reconsidered,
you can e-mail me for resources: lilyfieldmomma@yahoo.com

P.P.P.S. (is that a thing!?)

FACEBOOK. || INSTAGRAM. || TWITTER.
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Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The Gift of Siblings

Routinely, every morning, my toddler sons romp into our bedroom with their
sleepy faces, bed heads, and whatever toy weapons they've chosen to bear that day.
They peak over the mattress with such excited hope, "is she awake, momma?"

And I am so glad we don't have to rush into the day. I'm thankful we have time to
stroke the baby's hair, cuddle under layers of cream and white covers, and chat about whether
we should have maple-cinnamon toast or oatmeal with apples for breakfast. Luxury.


They all smell of childhood, and I just breathe them in. Stay longer. Stay closer.
Let me hold you until my heart is content. Which will be: never.

Brothers and a sister. My Judah trembles and tells me, "I just love her so much!"
He loves so fiercely - he can't even stand it. They ask if they can "eat her cheeks" because
they are just so good. This goes on for hours - all day - the gift of siblings being unwrapped
and unwrapped and unwrapped in all its intended goodness.

I love that we can all be together.
Thankful that God has so allowed this season of our lives to be graced with me being home with
our kids, homeschooling. We take the days slowly, quietly, mostly unseen by the world - drinking
our decaf with cream in the mornings, playing, learning, snuggling, resting the days away.

Don't get me wrong. For the most part it's all peaches 'n cream, but I guess a more honest
representation would read: "playing, ARUGING, learning, WHINING, snuggling, CRYING,
resting the day away, PRAYING FOR DADDY TO COME HOME ASAP."

But that just didn't seem to flow as well. Ha!

When Nathan and I first started dating, I asked him if he would always be ok if I wanted to
use my hard-earned, very expensive, private college degree to stay home and use it in the best
way my heart saw possible... to raise and teach and be present to our children in the same
way my own mom was to me.


It's a good thing he gave an emphatic "yes" - or where would we be today?!


I am the honored witness of friendships being forged; the foundation of what will hopefully
be lifelong, irreplaceable relationships. Yes, God chose me to be their mother, but He also chose
these siblings for each other.
It makes me laugh to envision the grand scheme of it all - these crazy
kids - iron sharpening iron! They will know, test, refine, and form each other like no one else can.

Often I think of how deeply my boys love each other. About how they tell people they are twins
and cry at the very idea of being separated for even the shortest amount of time. If I am leaving the
house they anxiously ask if I am taking the baby with me - because "Mom, we like her. Please leave her
here with us."
It's a beautiful thing.


Bella's days are filled with big brother kisses, cheek squishes, and all the "oooo-ing and ahhhhh-ing"
a baby could want. The boys make her smile more quickly and easily than anyone else. They dote,
and she lights up. All the while, momma is just melting into a puddle on the other side of the room.

Don't mind me.

The belly laughs, the bear hugs, the crocodile tears when limits are pushed - the sparkling smiles,
the pretty pleases, the blueberry eyes, the chocolate eyes, full of questions, answers, and child-like
wonder - the tiny hands, smelly feet, batting eyelashes begging again and again... for a snack. Sigh.
This is the story of my life - the story of children - the story of brothers and sisters.

Cliché of all clichés, it is such a gift - this gift of siblings. And I just want to laugh,
and happy scream, and ugly-momma-cry it out for all the world to know.



Now I want to go hug my own sisters and brother.
Thanks, mom and dad, for the gift.




















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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Pumpkin Spice Muffins





I love this time of year.
The air is rich with the aromas that remind us of warmth.
Cinnamon, balsam, peppermint, brown sugar -- all dancing in the air, calling us
back to the moments that have left smile lines all over our hearts.

Making candy cane cookies in grandma's kitchen.
Unwrapping a meowing box of kittens on Christmas morning.
Decorating your first tree as newlyweds.
Watching your footy pajama-ed children beam with joy
as the lights twinkle, the hot cocoa is poured,
and the nativity story retold.


The world tells me to "hustle and bustle,", but I can hear my soul
counter-offering, "Be still." I look at my children now and can't bear
the reality of the time passing; each moment slipping away with the diaper changes,
the bath time, the books that are read.

I don't want to miss it.

When they remember "home", I want them to see calm, peace, joy,
and the beauty that came from just BEING together;
breathing in and out the wonderful rhythm of

"us".

It brings me much happiness to recreate such warm recipes that will
someday hopefully conjure up special memories deep in the hearts of my children.
When they take a bite and their taste buds spin a tale of cinnamon and brown sugar -
I hope they feel loved.




|| GLUTEN-FREE PUMPKIN SPICE MUFFINS ||

In stand mixer, mix together:

1 C. of pumpkin puree
1/4 C. melted butter or oil
1/2 C. whole milk
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

In separate bowl, sift together:

1 1/2 C. gluten-free all purpose flour blend (I use Bob's Red Mill)
3/4 C. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher sea salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. cloves
1/4 tsp. ginger

Slowly mix dry ingredients into wet ingredients.

Pour batter into a lined muffin tin. Yields 12.

Bake at 350 for 15-18 minutes.


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Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A Thrill of Hope | A Family Advent

Boughs of greenery carefully laced, strategically stapled, to a 4 foot wide circle of wood; an
Advent wreath. I remember going out to the carriage house with my dad and four younger siblings,
dressed in coveralls, clinging to mugs of hot cocoa, as we brushed off the chill and began our
work on a yearly tradition.

We argued over the hum of the heater, the flicker of fluorescent light, about whose turn
it was to hold the stapler, the hot glue gun. "More branches over here!" "Leave room for
the candles!"
Working with our hands to create a symbol of hope, of promise - one we would
gather around for the weeks leading up to Christmas as we pray, wait. It was magic.
The stuff that starry sky over Bethlehem was made of.

It was always hung in the center of our family room. A massive display, gesture of remembrance,
that our world was once dark, but was made bright by a tiny babe born that first Christmas night.
As children, we would lay on the floor and look up through the center; noticing with each
passing evening of prayer, the room was getting brighter. He's coming - nearer, closer.
Anticipation. I remember the wreath would slowly begin to spin as more candles were lit -
casting the most beautiful star-shaped shadow on the ceiling, the walls.
Etching illuminated memories on our hearts.



This is what Advent is for. A time of waiting, preparation of our hearts and homes to
welcome again and again and again, year after year, the coming of the Savior. The mystery
of it all is endless; the wonder incapable of being contained. And we gather around the
green, light candles, purples and pink, unfold the readings for the Jesse Tree, devour the
goodness of the history of salvation, and once again we grasp at the beauty of Christmas.
Deeper this time. Take me deeper this time.

"Advent is concerned with that very connection between memory and hope which

is so necessary to man. Advent's intention is to awake the most profound and basic

emotional memory within us, namely, the memory of the God who became child.

This is a healing memory; it brings HOPE."
- Pope Benedict XVI

___________________________

Here's a peek into what our family is up to this Advent season.
Sunday, November 30th, 2014 - it all begins!!!

Advent Wreath //

It doesn't have to be fancy. Simple greens + 4 candles to light as each week passes.
You light the first candle on the first Sunday of Advent, then light two candles on the
second week - so on and so forth. The pink candle is for the third week - GAUDETE SUNDAY!
Joy Sunday. A different color - a color of JOY - Christmas is getting closer!

We light the appointed candle(s) each night for family prayer time.


Jesse Tree // Bible readings + free printable ornaments

I keep the ornaments and reading prompts tucked inside envelopes for the kids to open.
Reading through the history of salvation, the cast of characters, the golden thread of
connection - never grows old for me or my family.

Nathan and I are also going to be doing the daily reading from Ann Voskamp's new book,
The Greatest Gift. She has amazing words to share each day that go along with the Jesse Tree.



4 Weeks of Waiting //

Growing up we didn't listen to Christmas music or put up our tree until after Mass
ON Christmas Eve. The build-up to that moment was so exciting, thrilling for us!
Since my own kids are still so little, and the idea of putting up a tree right before
Christmas is not exactly realistic for us -- we have been spacing out the celebration
for the past couple of years:

1st Sunday of Advent: Make Advent Wreath

2nd Sunday of Advent: Set out, arrange, discuss the Nativity scene

3rd Sunday of Advent: Buy and decorate a real Christmas tree

4th Sunday of Advent: Hang stockings and wrap presents

___________________________

Wishing you all a blessed and holy season of anticipation - of Advent!

Would love to hear ideas on how you bring this part
of the liturgical year to life in YOUR home!

"The people walking in darkness have seen a great light;

on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned."
- Isaiah 9:2




















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Thursday, November 20, 2014

MINTED



This weekend we are shooting a family photo for our Christmas card!!!
I've been having phenomenal visions of playful, bright, life-in-motion for this year's
theme -- trying to capture the reality of our current state of affairs.
Three children: 4 and under. *cough cough* ahem.

I stocked up on peanut M&Ms (the toddlers' payment of choice) and am hopeful for
at least one decent shot to share with dear grandma and grandpa.
Patron saint of family photo shoots, pray for us?

So you know that singing telegram scene from the holiday movie, Elf?
"And guess what? I love you, I love you, I LOVE yooooou!"

THAT is exactly how I feel about MINTED.COM.
Have you seen their Christmas card designs for this season? Gorgeous.
I'm going to throw it all out there, and just tell you that I am officially IN LOVE.
Excited that they will be doing our Christmas cards this year!!!

They offer so many beautiful designs and options that I seriously don't know how
I will ever be able to pick!!! Here are some of my favorites...








I can't wait to get my hands on some pretty paper and share the
final production with you!!!

STAY TUNED.

P.S. MINTED is offering 15% off all holiday card
orders through the weekend!!! Use code: SNOW.
Get your hot cocoa and go!










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