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#31 of 105 Old 05-15-2012, 08:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Hebaume, I take my kids everywhere I go.  There's lots of kids at the stations of the cross at my parish, so I don't feel the least bit uncomfortable with kids of any age there.  We do take our kids to adoration as well, and that's sometimes a little more difficult.  We only go for half an hour almost every week, and there's music to sing along with, but my kids (now 0 and 3) are the only ones in there.  It's kinda like taking kids to Mass... I try to keep them from bothering people too much, but it's more important that they get the chance to be with Jesus, and when they're there all the time, they learn how to behave.

 

Mylilmonkeys, tough questions!  I have wondered how to celebrate my daughter's menarche with her even though I have about a decade to go, but I really haven't come up with any answers.  Maybe a long conversation, going for a walk or out for ice cream with Mom, a discussion of the gift of fertility, maybe a large chunk of the "birds and the bees" discussion, maybe some early fertility charting information if she is interested.  I guess a lot of what I say would have to do with what has been said before.  I'd love to do something that would help to acknowledge that she's a woman now, no longer a little girl, maybe pointing towards vocation and an invitation to begin discernment or to grow into a more adult-like faith.

 

AnnieA, that's tough!  Prayers for you as you discern your family size.  I don't have any children with disabilities at this point (at least not ones that have shown up yet), so I have little room to speak, but I know it's always a possibility to have a child with disabilities.  I've been told by someone who had no right to say it that I should seriously consider not having any kids since there are a number of genetic disorders in my family, and it seems like almost every big Catholic family I know has at least one child who has some issues of one kind or another, so I sometimes wonder if it's only a matter of time.  As a Catholic, I don't believe that a life with disabilities is any less worth living than a life without.  It does take more work, time, and attention, though, to raise a child the with disabilities, and I do think that that can have an effect on family planning, but I wouldn't close door on having more children after having one with a disability.  We can never know the future, never know if something is going to happen where we have to balance the needs of everyone in the family and some needs end up not getting met as well as we would like.  I mean, I could get killed or seriously injured in an accident tomorrow, and who would take care of my kids then?  I try to plan for contingencies, but I'm not going to give up on cocreating new lives based on some distant "what if's."

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#32 of 105 Old 05-16-2012, 10:13 AM
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Mylilmonkeys, regarding honoring your dd's menarche, the patron saint of teenage girls is St. Maria Goretti.  Sometimes St. Catherine of Siena or St. Catherine of Alexandria are also invoked as patronesses of teenage girls.  I would suggest giving your daughter a medallion of one of these saints, or a book explaining the saint's life.  I went through some difficult times as a teenager, and it did help me to know that the Church had many models for me to emulate.


"Isn't life a series of images that change as they repeat themselves?" - Andy Warhol
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#33 of 105 Old 05-16-2012, 03:45 PM
 
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A book is a great idea.  She's an avid reader.  I've also had a thought of getting her a journal, maybe one of those 5 year ones, and encouraging her to also make note of her cycle start days to begin teaching her to track it.  Thanks for the suggestions!


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#34 of 105 Old 05-21-2012, 11:22 AM
 
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Hey everyone! I had kept away from Mothering for quite a while as part of a larger effort to refocus my time (was even off facebook for Lent, which was HUGE) but I've been feeling a bit disconnected and came looking for "the new thread."

 

So glad to see some familiar names here and know that you are all in my prayers!

 

DD is 5 1/2. A few weeks ago, she asked me why only men can be priests, and I was floored. (I'm a convert, and it took me a LONG time to be OK with what I saw as "discrimination!") Does anyone have any suggestions for explaining it in a way that makes sense at this age? I gave the usual answers, but I think she still is confused, and given that she moves in a world that believes this is inherently unfair, I want her to be prepared.

 

I'm just realizing that starting kindergarten in the fall, and attending public school, is going to expose her to all kinds of things we haven't encountered before and I am sure this is only the tip of the iceberg ...
 


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Trying to be a joyful Catholic wife and mama, and taking it one day at a time!
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#35 of 105 Old 05-21-2012, 11:55 AM
 
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DD is 5 1/2. A few weeks ago, she asked me why only men can be priests, and I was floored. (I'm a convert, and it took me a LONG time to be OK with what I saw as "discrimination!") Does anyone have any suggestions for explaining it in a way that makes sense at this age? I gave the usual answers, but I think she still is confused, and given that she moves in a world that believes this is inherently unfair, I want her to be prepared.

 

My thoughts on this may be too much for a 5-year-old, but you know your daughter and can water things down, as you see fit.

 

I explain to my non-Catholic friends that we follow the example set by Jesus, where his disciples (and therefore the first priests) were men.  We don't change our beliefs and practices every time society's beliefs and practices change.  Society can be inconsistent and its changes are not always based on what is best or right.  The Church has not always been right, either, but it is reassuring that the Church is very slow and measured about change, and that many things never change.  For example, society has embraced abortion and accepted the death penalty, although society imposes the death penalty more on marginalized members of society than it does on privileged people convicted of the same crimes.  The Church has consistently and steadfastly opposed both practices, regardless of society's criticism.  When I want guidance, I feel more confident following the time-honored teachings of the Church than the current trends in society.  

 

And anyone who thinks that because women can't be priests, Catholics do not value or respect women, is not looking hard enough.  The Church has cherished Mary through eras when society had little respect for women and placed little value on motherhood.  In many families, men work outside the home and women stay home with the children.  Our current society often equates that with women being oppressed and men being seen as "more important".  That's a sad way of looking at something as important as child-rearing.  Similarly, men and women can have some different roles in the church, without that meaning women are oppressed, undervalued, or without a voice.    


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#36 of 105 Old 05-21-2012, 01:14 PM - Thread Starter
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I would talk about how being equal does not mean being the same.  Men and women are equally loved by God and equally important in the Church, but we are different, both physically and spiritually.  The role of women in the Church is very, very important.  Only men can be priests, but only women are able to bear and nurse children.  Now, not all men are called to be priests, and not all women are called to be mothers, but a woman cannot become a priest any more than a man can get pregnant.

 

It might help to brainstorm ways that men and women are different but both wonderful or to talk about listening for God's call to a vocation and to discuss the vocations that God could call her to.

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#37 of 105 Old 05-24-2012, 12:45 PM
 
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Hello! Just stopping in to tell you all THANK YOU! I lurked on your threads off and on when I was more active on MDC and you all played a part in my conversion to the Catholic faith. I was confirmed on Holy Saturday this year. luxlove.gif

 

Lots of love,

 

tinybutterfly

 

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"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." -Plato
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#38 of 105 Old 05-25-2012, 10:13 AM
 
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Hello! Just stopping in to tell you all THANK YOU! I lurked on your threads off and on when I was more active on MDC and you all played a part in my conversion to the Catholic faith. I was confirmed on Holy Saturday this year. luxlove.gif

 

Lots of love,

 

tinybutterfly

 

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This is cool!

 

 

Now, not to beat a dead horse, but I have to talk about the breastfeeding controversy set off by TIME magazine.  Not about the cover itself per se, but the response to AP and BF.  I am seriously disappointed in the Catholic response.  I have been following the Catholic coverage closely, and it is not what I thought it would be.  There has been a lot of backlash against AP.  So much for Catholicism being a bastion for AP.  Blessed JPII himself said that Catholic mothers should try to bf for a minimum of two years, and Dr. Sears (from the TIME article) is a Catholic and father of eight. There have been entire books written on Catholicism and BF/AP!  But on "The Drew Mariani Show" on Relevant Radio, he had an "expert" say that formula is just as good as breastmilk and that the positives of breastfeeding are overrated.  I didn't get to listen to the comments on other aspects of AP (such as cosleeping) but the preview I heard was not postive.  The editorials in Catholic periodicals, and the comments on such pieces, are infuriating!  "Formula renders breastfeeding obsolete."  "Once a baby has teeth it is time to be done!"  "Women who breastfeed anything older than an infant should be ashamed of themselves."  Is this distressing anyone else?


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#39 of 105 Old 05-25-2012, 03:00 PM - Thread Starter
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Congratulations, tinybutterfly!  Welcome home to the Church.

 

mt_gooseberry, I'm thankful I have somehow managed to avoid hearing the things you are talking about.  This is the only Catholic response I've seen, and I think it's just beautiful: http://www.elizabethfoss.com/reallearning/2012/05/the-face-of-attachment-parenting.html

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#40 of 105 Old 05-26-2012, 12:15 PM
 
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Welcome home, tinybutterfly!  This board's policy on sharing blog links confuses me, but I'd like to invite anyone interested to stop over by my blog:  Authentic Catholicism.  We're a bunch of converts in love with the Church. :)


Mom to eight!!  Our twin girls arrived 3-3-2011.

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#41 of 105 Old 05-27-2012, 07:10 PM
 
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I just lurk here...but I wanted to point out that Drew Mariani is like the Rush Limbaugh of catholic radio. I had gotten a lot of comfort from catholic radio years ago but it seems when I turn it on now all I hear is political rhetoric and inflammatory stuff like that drew Mariani piece. It doesn't help that every time I turn on the radio station he's there.
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#42 of 105 Old 05-28-2012, 09:54 AM
 
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I just lurk here...but I wanted to point out that Drew Mariani is like the Rush Limbaugh of catholic radio. I had gotten a lot of comfort from catholic radio years ago but it seems when I turn it on now all I hear is political rhetoric and inflammatory stuff like that drew Mariani piece. It doesn't help that every time I turn on the radio station he's there.

Ooohhh.  We just got the Catholic radio station, and I've really been enjoying it, but I definitely see what you mean.  He is always on, isn't he!?  And he is kind of rough.  I actually e-mailed him about the AP show.  I didn't get a response. 

 

JMJ, thank you for posting that link.  It helped to restore some of my faith and pride in the Catholicism-AP connection.


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#43 of 105 Old 05-28-2012, 11:30 AM
 
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In defense of Drew, my husband works right around the corner from the studio and personally interviewed Drew for a school project while he was working on his digital media degree.  He is a faithful, committed Catholic man, and graciously agreed to the interview with very little notice.  He is prayerful and has a deep devotion to Our Mother, and was able to share some of this deeply held beliefs and how he has witnessed the work of the Holy Spirit in his life and others.  The format of his show is intended to cast a Catholic light onto topics that are currently popular or in the media.  I prefer to listen when he is doing the Divine Chaplet, but his show is generally miles above Rush or Hannity or the like.  I did cringe at his first go at the breastfeeding topic, but he followed up the next day with an AP advocate.  I wasn't in my car long enough to hear how that went, but I think he was responsive to the feedback of those who were upset with the initial choice of host on the topic.  If you are looking for more spiritual content from Relevant Radio, I believe shows earlier in the day provide more of that.  Also, if you are so inclined, my dh was invited to apply for a board operator position with the station and I would covet prayers over his potential employment!


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#44 of 105 Old 05-28-2012, 11:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Hmmm... I listen to Catholic Radio (Immaculate Heart Radio, but we get a lot of shows from EWTN, Ave Maria Radio, etc) all the time, and his name doesn't ring a bell.  I didn't listen much the week after the Time piece since I had family in town.  I'm jealous of places that have Greg Popcack's show, but the shows we have tend to be really good.  I've been Catholic my whole life, and I'm still always learning something new I never thought of before.

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#45 of 105 Old 05-28-2012, 02:09 PM
 
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Thank you all very much! love.gif

 

I've been listening to Catholic radio since last summer-ish? and it seems to be a lot of EWTN here, too. I don't get EWTN on my television. Bummer.

 

I am trying to check in at MDC, but not get sucked back into you know, practically living here, so my visits will be very sporadic and brief.

 

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"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." -Plato
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#46 of 105 Old 06-03-2012, 12:55 PM
 
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Responding to the OP about ways to get together with large families: "As I asked on our previous thread, I was wondering if any of you have ideas on how to get together IRL with other Catholic families who have lots of children.  There are 3 other Catholic families that we're trying to get to know better, but it's difficult to find a place to share a meal with 8 adults and 14 children.  One family has a big yard and promises to invite everybody over for a barbecue when it gets warmer, but when it's not summer, what to do?"

 

We found a lovely way to gather with other Catholic families, I thought I'd share in case it's a help to you.

 

We attended a Friday evening mass together, then came back to our house. Not huge, we use all the space we have. We served soup, bread and water. Some folks brought extra stuff: wine, dessert, cheese, veggies, although none were requested.

 

Kids played and grown-ups talked. 

 

Simple, easy and delightful.

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#47 of 105 Old 06-08-2012, 03:14 PM
 
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May I please join you, ladies?  I've been Catholic my whole life, and while I've only ever attended Catholic schools, as an adult I've mostly attended weekly mass because I was supposed to, but without much else devotion.  My husband and I have found a vibrant, active parish with lots of families and I was blessed to attend the women's Christ Renews His Parish (CHRP) retreat in February, which has really pushed me to want to deepen my faith so that I can more fully pass it on to my children.  I am now in the formation process for the team to lead next year's retreat, which I am very excited and nervous about. 
 

Our parish does not have a school, (but a very active religious education program) and we have decided that the other nearby Catholic schools are not a good fit for our family, but I am still struggling with our decision to enroll our son in our neighborhood public school for kindergarten this fall.  I love the idea of Catholic homeschooling, but I don't know if I have the skills to give my children the education that they deserve.  I am praying about this and looking into the Catholic homeschooling group in our area.
 

I am rambling in this post, but I wanted to thank JMJ for sharing that blog post related to the Time article.  That was something that I really needed to read right now as I have been distracted by the frustrations of social media recently.  My favorite Catholic support of attachment parenting is Sheila Kippley's "Breastfeeding and Catholic Motherhood."  It's disheartening that some vocal Catholics aren't showing their support as well. 

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#48 of 105 Old 06-09-2012, 10:03 AM
 
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Our parish does not have a school, (but a very active religious education program) and we have decided that the other nearby Catholic schools are not a good fit for our family, but I am still struggling with our decision to enroll our son in our neighborhood public school for kindergarten this fall.  I love the idea of Catholic homeschooling, but I don't know if I have the skills to give my children the education that they deserve.  I am praying about this and looking into the Catholic homeschooling group in our area.
 

Welcome! 

 

 I just wanted to give my two cents about homeschooling.  I'm a teacher, so I definitely have a bias here, but I think a public school backed up with lots of parental involvement is a much better option than homeschooling when a parent has doubts about their qualifications to educate.  I'm not against all homeschooling, but when I think of everything a teacher has to know (not just the subject [or in the case of a homeschooler, subjects!] but also the pedagogy and management and evaluation)...I do not see most parents as having those qualifications.  My own children will be in public school...I would not feel comfortable giving them an elementarty education without the training.  As for secondary, I could do everything but math, physics, and chemistry, but those would be some very big holes in their education!


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#49 of 105 Old 06-11-2012, 11:45 AM - Thread Starter
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Welcome Ann!  I'm glad you enjoyed that blog post as much as I did.

 

Thank you for sharing your thoughts on homeschooling, mt_gooseberry.  That is really helpful to me.  My MIL had a career in education, and she is very strongly against our plans to homeschool, and it's hard for me to understand why, and your thoughts on the matter are very helpful for my understanding of where she must be coming from.

 

My experience of homeschooling is different.  Most families I know who homeschool do an excellent job of providing for the education of their children, and most homeschooled children I know are ahead of their peers in most subjects.  Many parents are not as qualified as they would like to teach certain subjects, and there are a number of ways to handle this.  I think that a common misperception of homeschooling is that it is just the mother and the kids, and the mother has to know everything to teach it to her children.  Homeschooling situations that work well often involve a number of families, and they pool their skills to teach the subjects needed.  Some parents seek tutoring for their children in subjects they aren't qualified to teach.  I've even seen a school that is designed for homeschoolers to come a couple times a week and attend with their parents to take subjects that could not be taught as well at home.  Above all, I see a lot of homeschoolers learning how to self-teach by reading about things, and I see a lot of co-learning where the parent learns the subjects along with the children, enhancing the experience for both.

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#50 of 105 Old 06-11-2012, 12:40 PM
 
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I like all this discussion about homeschooling.  I definitely think homeschooling CAN work, but very often I see that it doesn't.  I myself would have done very well homeschooled if my parents had gone that route, as I am a very self-motivated learner.  And I think in areas where there are lots of opportunities for homeschoolers to support their education (vis. JMJ's examples) there can be more success.  We have a lot of homeschooling here in MT among the rural population, and next to no regulations.  It makes for some interesting results.  I think the homeschooling option would be good for very bright or precocious children with very dedicated parents.  And there is not much harm in trying homeschooling out--you can always go back to traditional schooling if it doesn't seem to be working out.  In any case, whether your children are homeschooled or in public school, BE INVOLVED! 


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#51 of 105 Old 06-12-2012, 11:37 AM
 
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Thanks for the homeschooling perspectives!  I have a bachelor's degree, so I think I meet the minimum qualifications, but I don't know that I have the patience and organization that it would take to homeschool well.  I feel a little pressure because my mom was a Catholic school teacher, so I think that she is a bit disappointed that we are choosing the public school option, and my sister is doing a great job of homeschooling her kids with a Catholic homeschool group.  I know that I need to do what I think is best for my family though.  I think IL has pretty minimal regulation, but they also make it difficult to get extra services for the kids who need them if they aren't enrolled in the public school.  DS might need some extra fine motor help, which we are doing through a private OT right now, but I don't want him to miss out on extra school-provided services if needed too. 

 

Another question for the group: Do you take your young children to weekday mass?  Sunday is always a bit of a struggle even with DH and I to wrangle both kids, but I would like to start going one extra day in the morning if I could manage it.  DH's work schedule doesn't allow for him to attend weekday mass with us unfortunately. 

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#52 of 105 Old 06-13-2012, 10:37 AM
 
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I am an elementary teacher by profession with a master's in the field... and we will definitely home school. (We are in Europe, though.) TBH, I do not see a parent needing most of the things that are taught to teachers whose job it is to control and teach a larger group of kids. What the parents don't know, they can learn, if they are truly interested. Yet, I will say that my husband was against home schooling years ago, having met some kids who had not been taught how to read, etc. The parents were quite out there, though, and seemed to almost fear education, as if that would steal the kids' faith.

 

We have no opportunity to go to Mass during the week, as our nearest parish is so far. We try to make each Sunday very special, also outside of Mass... If we ever live closer to a church, we will definitely try to go more often....


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#53 of 105 Old 06-13-2012, 01:03 PM - Thread Starter
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We try to make it to daily Mass when we can, but it doesn't happen as much as I would like.  DD (3) usually does very well since she's been going to Mass her whole life and she gets to nurse for a bit during the homily.  DS (3 mos) still sleeps through a lot of it, and I wear him to keep my hands free to deal with DD.  I've been to daily Mass a whole lot of places around town and on vacations, and I almost always have the only kids in the room, and everyone there seems so excited to see me bringing my children to Mass, even when their behavior isn't great.  I tend to get sympathetic glances when I drag a screaming toddler out during the consecration and greetings and compliments afterward, even when it wasn't a great day.  People are just so glad to see the faith being passed on to our children, and they seem willing to put up with a little bit of distraction from them.

 

It's good to see you LTB!  How is your pregnancy going?

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#54 of 105 Old 06-13-2012, 06:11 PM
 
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I tend to get sympathetic glances when I drag a screaming toddler out during the consecration and greetings and compliments afterward, even when it wasn't a great day. 

 

Why is it always during the consecration?!?  LOL, without fail, that is either when DD bonks her head on the pew in front of us or has to go to the bathroom.  Always!


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#55 of 105 Old 06-17-2012, 03:11 PM
 
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Hello my sisters in Christ! I have been away from MDC for awhile, I found I was allowing myself to get dragged into a lot of negativity and I just had to pull back for a bit. Plus, the Lord has been moving mountains in my life over the past year and I can't believe how many changes have taken place in my life. Glory to God! AND I just found out I am expecting!! We are very happy, although we wish we were 10 years ypunger:joy

We are very blessed to live 30 minutes away from a very traditional community called the Slaves of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, where we attend mass and my older children attend school. We have tried homeschooling, and it just isn't for us.

We are not having ANY luck with our2 year old at mass. He doesn't last more than a few minutes. Today we tag-teamed mass. DH and the older kids when to 9:00 and I went by myself to 11:00.

Catherinepraying.gif traditional Catholic mama to bikenew.gifjammin.gifdiaper.gif wife to an amazing man.selectivevax.gifnocirc.giffamilybed1.gif

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#56 of 105 Old 06-21-2012, 05:06 PM
 
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Moonshoes- you're lucky to be able to tag team!  I wish we had that option.  We're in a rural small town and there is one service, held only on Sundays.

 

Is anyone going to do anything for Fortnight for Freedom?


Wife to DH from Mexico, and mother to DD (01/10); DS (09/11); and one on the way (03 or 04/14)  buddamomimg1.png

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#57 of 105 Old 06-24-2012, 06:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mt_gooseberry View Post

Is anyone going to do anything for Fortnight for Freedom?

 

I'm doing a facebook post series with different quotes on freedom of religion and the feast days of the different saints and martyrs being celebrated during this time.  There's not much else going on in our diocese... something an hour away in the middle of naptime, and a holy hour with the local nuns half an hour away starting at bedtime...

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#58 of 105 Old 07-10-2012, 04:48 AM
 
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Hello everyone. I had to share some wonderful news. You may remember my stressing about how to take both kids to Mass (since DH isn't Catholic, and last Christmas Eve went so bad he doesn't even want to do that any more) This has been a huge back cloud over my head for a long time, but I decided to give it a try on Sunday and the results were amazing. 5 year old DD was very excited to show DS what to do, and even though every other time I took him into a church he just started yelling "Jesus" at the top of his lungs, he was actually pretty calm. I brought the "Mass bag" out, which we hadn't used in a couple of years with DD, but after a while it wasnt even needed. I don't know if this is a fluke, but. I'm so grateful that I was able to overcome this huge mental obstacle. I now believe I can do this.
I know many of you handle many more children than I do, so this may seem petty, but I've been living in fear of this for so long, and I feel so proud and grateful. And of course, now the idea of trying to have another baby creeps into my mind. "If Icahn handle 2, why not 3?" Sigh. I guess I'm still not ready to believe we are done.
Moonshoes, good to see you back!

Beth.
Trying to be a joyful Catholic wife and mama, and taking it one day at a time!
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#59 of 105 Old 07-10-2012, 10:56 AM
 
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sarahsmiles, I'm glad to hear it went so well!  There will undoubtedly be good days and bad days, but your faithfulness will be rewarded.  How sweet of your little girl to be so active in sharing the faith with her brother!


Mom to eight!!  Our twin girls arrived 3-3-2011.

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#60 of 105 Old 07-13-2012, 02:44 PM - Thread Starter
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God must be trying to say something to me about kids at Mass.  The announcer before Mass last Sunday at my church, along with his reminder to turn off cell phones, reminded parents of their obligation to teach their children how to behave during Mass and everyone else to be patient with said children as they're learning.  During Mass, one of the distracting thoughts that entered my mind was how difficult it is to get to know other families from my church because so many don't bring their children to Mass or bolt out the door as soon as Mass is over.  Then, sarahsmiles, you post about taking your kids to Mass, and I see these two blog posts on facebook this week.

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