Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Just Some Pics I Wanted To Share

Our Christmas Tree

Our Fire Place

A View Of The Road Leading To Paul's Mom's

A View From Paul's Mom's Backyard

Backyard Again

Monday, December 29, 2008

100 Facts

Here is list of 100 facts about me. I stole the idea from Heidi's blog, I think everyone should do something like this, it's amazing how hard it is. Oh, and please don't think I sat down and made this list all at once, I worked on it for a couple of days.

1. I love dressing for the winter time.

2. I'm happy being in the kitchen, as long as I'm cooking and not cleaning.

3. Vanilla is my favorite flavor ice cream.

4. I despise exercise, but I love the way I feel it makes me feel.

5. Most of my clothes are from Target.

6. I married my best friend, and yes, my soul mate.

7. I love driving at night.

8. I had seizure's for the first 5 years of my life.

9. I hate wearing open toed shoes.

10. I am not a neat freak, but I wish I was.

11. I love sad music. You know, sappy depressing love songs.

12. I talk to God several times a day, and Mary too!

13. I love girls night my with mom and Ruth. Hey it's been a while!

14. I love Sushi! Mmmmm, spicy tuna hand roll!!

15. Every 4 years I want to dye my hair blond, and I hate it every time.

16. I love quiet time with my Sweetie. And all the other times too!

17. I love coffee, just not when I make it.

18. My car always looks like I live in it.

19. I look forward to alone time with my mom.

20. I still sleep with a night light.

21. I don't like drama in my life, but I admit that I like to hear about other people's.

22. Taylor Swift's "Love Story" is my favorite song of the moment. Paul just bought me the CD.

23. I like my feet.

24. I always worry about 2 of my sisters.

25. If I make the bed twice in one week, it's a miracle.

26. I can't survive without allergy meds.

27. I would have lunch with Holly everyday if I could.

28. My favorite color's are Red, Blue, and Yellow. But none of those work in our house.

29. Paul is the only person who truly knows me.

30. I spend too much time on the computer.

31. Going grocery shopping relaxes me.

32. I tape my Christmas cards on the wall.

33. I wont leave the house without putting eyeliner on.

34. I love concerts.

35. Tickling me too much may cause a violent reaction on my part. Be ware!!!

36. I love Rome and I would go back in a heart beat.

37. I am happier than I've ever been.

38. I feel most comfortable in blue jeans. I love them!

39. I love the sound of a newborn crying. It's the only time crying is cute! :)

40. I dye my hair to hide the grays.

41. Starbucks is my favorite treat! A venti iced green tea with 3 packets of splenda. Yum!

42. I wish I saw my dad more.

43. I like seeing Paul's eyes light up like a little boy when he's excited about something.

44. I have a scar on my left calve from falling off my bike when I was 11 years old.

45. I love listening to Journey while driving by myself, so I can sing at the top of my lungs.

46. I like to send thank you cards.

47. Target is my favorite store. I like Macy's too!

48. I'm allergic to Christmas trees.

50. My aunt & uncle have a special place in my heart. They're amazing.

51. I would love to have a dozen children, or more.

52. I text while driving.

53. My camera is always with me, but I rarely use it.

54. I wish Tim and I were still as close as we were as kids.

55. I adore my big bro, everyone does!

56. Holy cards are what I like to use as bookmarks.

57. Blogging is my biggest hobby.

58. Ten books is my goal for 2009.

59. I can't stand Bruce Springsteen.

60. I have been an aunt since I was 8 years old.

61. I enjoy reading about the Saints.

62. Spending one on one time with each of my sister's is something I wish we did more often.

63. I laugh more with Paul than anyone.

64. I can play Tetris for hours.

65. While cleaning I listen to Country Music.

66. I have a mole on my back.

67. Cats scare me.

68. One of my pets as a kid was a Squirrel Monkey named Darwin.

69. Vacuuming is my least favorite chore.

70. I like laying on the couch watching golf with my husband.

71. I've had very few friends in my life, by choice.

72. I daydream, always have and probably always will.

73. "Stand By Me" by Ben E. King always puts me in a good mood.

74. I like to sing the songs that my mom sang to us at night.

75. Baking intimidates me.

76. I enjoy my own company.

77. Eleanor Dashwood is my favorite Jane Austin character.

78. I like the house to be full of sunlight.

79. Meatloaf is one of my favorite meals.

80. Paul and I never run out of things to talk about.

81. I love my life.

82. I have trouble believing I can do anything, but I'm working on it.

83. It bothers me when I hear women/men put down their spouses in public. It shouldn't be done at all.

84. I think about my family all the time.

85. I should be folding laundry right now. :)

86. My favorite numbers are 3 and 7.

87. New York is where I plan to go with Paul next December.

88. I love candles. Lit candles help to clear my mind of stress and worry.

89. I make a list of goals for each year and then forget about it. This year I wont forget.

90. I don't like strapless anything.

91. I need an Olive Garden fix soon.

92. I have never yelled at Paul, for any reason.

93. Living by the beach is great for my sinuses, but I never go down by the water.

94. I wish my mom would find her way back. :)

95. I don't have any tattoos. Thank you mom for talking me out of it.

96. I'm no longer embarrassed to dance in public. Whether I dance well or not, I have a great time.

97. I tend to be very hard on myself.

98. Although I'm allergic to most flowers I still love to get them.

99. Most of my clothes are black or gray, which is strange because I love bright colors.

100. I already can't wait for next Christmas.

Friday, December 26, 2008

“Those who know don't tell and those who tell don't know."

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!

Christmas Prayer

God of love, Father of all, the darkness
that covered the earth has given way to the
bright dawn of your Word made flesh. Make us a people of this light. Make us
faithful to your Word, that we may bring your life to the waiting world.
Grant this through Christ our Lord.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

12 Days Of Christmas

Catholics in England during the period 1558 to 1829 were prohibited by law to practice their faith either in public or private. It was illegal to be Catholic until Parliament finally emancipated Catholics in England in 1829. "The Twelve Days of Christmas" was written in England as one of the "catechism songs" to help young Catholics learn the basics of their faith. In short, it was a coded-message, a memory aid. Since the song sounded like rhyming nonsense, young Catholics could sing the song without fear of imprisonment. The authorities would not know that it was a religious song. "The 12 Days of Christmas" is in a sense an allegory. Each of the items in the song represents something significant to the teachings of the Catholic faith. The hidden meaning of each gift was designed to help Catholic children learn their faith. The better acquainted one is with the Bible, the more these interpretations have significance.

The song goes, "On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me…"
The "true love" mentioned in the song doesn’t refer to an earthly suitor, but it refers to God Himself. The "me" who receives the presents refers to every baptized person. i.e. the Church.

1st Day:
The partridge in a pear tree is Christ Jesus upon the Cross. In the song, Christ is symbolically presented as a mother partridge because she would feign injury to decoy a predator away from her nestlings. She was even willing to die for them. The tree is the symbol of the fall of the human race through the sin of Adam and Eve. It is also the symbol of its redemption by Jesus Christ on the tree of the Cross.

2nd Day:
The "two turtle doves" refers to the Old and New Testaments.

3rd Day:
The "three French hens" stand for faith, hope and love—the three gifts of the Spirit that abide (1 Corinthians 13).

4th Day:
The "four calling birds" refers to the four evangelists who wrote the Gospels—Matthew, Mark, Luke and John—which sing the song of salvation through Jesus Christ.

5th Day:
The "five golden rings" represents the first five books of the Bible, also called the Jewish Torah: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.

6th Day:
The "six geese a-laying" is the six days of creation.

7th Day:
The "seven swans a-swimming" refers to the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety and fear of the Lord.

8th Day:
The "eight maids a milking " reminded children of the eight beatitudes listed in the Sermon on the Mount.

9th Day:
The "nine ladies dancing" were the nine fruits of the Holy Spirit found in Galatians 5:22-23: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control.

10th Day:
The "ten lords a-leaping" represents the Ten Commandments

11th Day:
The "eleven pipers piping" refers to the eleven faithful apostles.

12th Day:
The ‘twelve drummers drumming" were the twelve points of belief expressed in the Apostles’ Creed: belief in God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, that Jesus Christ was born of the Virgin Mary, made man, crucified, died and arose on the third day, that he sits at the right hand of the father and will come again, the resurrection of the dead and life everlasting.

So the next time you hear "the Twelve Days of Christmas" consider how this otherwise non-religious sounding song had its origins in keeping alive the teaching of the Catholic faith.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Cake Balls Hint

If you try making these and decide to use white chocolate, I suggest going to a cake shop or bakery which sells the same chocolate they use. I tried making some more this morning with the Toll House white chocolate and they did not turn out well.

The TH is a lot thicker and over powers the cake inside. The chocolate I used from the cake shop has a great flavor, looks prettier, and is much easier to work with, and it compliments the flavor of the cake.

Friday, December 19, 2008

It is always wise to look ahead but difficult to look farther than you can see.

Pick n' Pen

Today I received an envelope in the mail that contained a letter from my aunt Jo Louis and a book called Pick n' Pen, the letter explained the book. This book is a collection of poems from John A. Sutter Junior High School and the cover was created by my mother when she was 14 and it includes a poem that she wrote as well.

I was so impressed when I read it, I called her to let her know and she told me the story behind it, but I'll let her tell you that if she so wishes. Maybe she will share the first part of the poem, which the school wouldn't publish.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Cake Balls

Well they're not as pretty as the ones I made on Monday with my aunt, but it's my first try. I used sprinkles instead of drizzling colored chocolate on top and the white chocolate dried too quickly. Oh, well, Paul loved the 3 he got to sample and the rest I'm taking into work tomorrow.

The filling is chocolate cake & frosting mixed with Baileys Irish Cream.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Advent Prayer

God of power and mercy, open our hearts in welcome. Remove the things that hinder us from receiving Christ with joy, so that we may share his wisdom and become one with him when he comes in glory, for he lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Monday, December 15, 2008

Sunday, December 14, 2008

I finished a book. Whoo-hoo!!!

Well I finally finished A Bold Fresh Piece Of Humanity. I started the book on the plan trip to France, and I nearly completed it on the trip, I only had 3 more chapters to go.
Once we got home of it took me forever to pick it the book and finish it and I'm so glad that I did. I have now read 7 book this year, and if anyone knows anything about me then they would agree that that's REALLY REALLY GOOD!!
I just never took the time to sit and read before, now I rarely leave the house without a book. I often find that I'm in the middle of three books at a time, and that works for me.

Please do not let the fact that it took so long to finish A Bold Fresh Piece Of Humanity lead you to believe that the book is boring and not worth reading, that couldn't be further from the truth. I liked the book very much. Over the election period Paul and I watched a lot of The O'Reilly Factor and since he seemed like an interesting guy I thought I'd give his book a shot, and I highly recommend it. If you don't have a clue who he is, I suggest watching his show on FOXnews for at least a week, If you like him, you'll love the book, if you don't like him it might change your mind.

St. John of the Cross

Born in Spain in 1542, John learned the importance of self-sacrificing love from his parents. His father gave up wealth, status, and comfort when he married a weaver's daughter and was disowned by his noble family. After his father died, his mother kept the destitute family together as they wandered homeless in search of work. These were the examples of sacrifice that John followed with his own great love -- God.
When the family finally found work, John still went hungry in the middle of the wealthiest city in Spain. At fourteen, John took a job caring for hospital patients who suffered from incurable diseases and madness. It was out of this poverty and suffering, that John learned to search for beauty and happiness not in the world, but in God.
After John joined the Carmelite order, Saint Teresa of Avila asked him to help her reform movement. John supported her belief that the order should return to its life of prayer. But many Carmelites felt threatened by this reform, and some members of John's own order kidnapped him. He was locked in a cell six feet by ten feet and beaten three times a week by the monks. There was only one tiny window high up near the ceiling. Yet in that unbearable dark, cold, and desolation, his love and faith were like fire and light. He had nothing left but God -- and God brought John his greatest joys in that tiny cell.
After nine months, John escaped by unscrewing the lock on his door and creeping past the guard. Taking only the mystical poetry he had written in his cell, he climbed out a window using a rope made of stirps of blankets. With no idea where he was, he followed a dog to civilization. He hid from pursuers in a convent infirmary where he read his poetry to the nuns. From then on his life was devoted to sharing and explaining his experience of God's love.
His life of poverty and persecution could have produced a bitter cynic. Instead it gave birth to a compassionate mystic, who lived by the beliefs that "Who has ever seen people persuaded to love God by harshness?" and "Where there is no love, put love -- and you will find love."
John left us many books of practical advice on spiritual growth and prayer that are just as relevant today as they were then. These books include:
Ascent of Mount Carmel
Dark Night of the Soul
and A Spiritual Canticle of the Soul and the Bridegroom Christ
Since joy comes only from God, John believed that someone who seeks happiness in the world is like "a famished person who opens his mouth to satisfy himself with air." He taught that only by breaking the rope of our desires could we fly up to God. Above all, he was concerned for those who suffered dryness or depression in their spiritual life and offered encouragement that God loved them and was leading them deeper into faith.
"What more do you want, o soul! And what else do you search for outside, when within yourself you possess your riches, delights, satisfaction and kingdom -- your beloved whom you desire and seek? Desire him there, adore him there. Do not go in pursuit of him outside yourself. You will only become distracted and you won't find him, or enjoy him more than by seeking him within you." -- Saint John of the Cross In His Footsteps:
John of the Cross believed it was just as dangerous to get attached to spiritual delights as worldly pleasures. Do you expect to get something -- a good feeling, a sense of God -- from prayer or worship? Do you continue to pray and worship when you feel alone or dry? Prayer:
Saint John of the Cross, in the darkness of your worst moments, when you were alone and persecuted, you found God. Help me to have faith that God is there especially in the times when God seems absent and far away. Amen

Friday, December 12, 2008

A good plan today, is better than a perfect plan tomorrow.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Prince Edward Island

I've always loved the story of Anne Of Green Gables, and since I was a little girl I've wanted to visit Prince Edward Island. I would love to see everything Anne that there is to see and just enjoy the beauty all around. I know there is an Annual Lucy Maud Montgomery Festival (Lucy's the author), the Festival includes daily performances by "Anne" and "Diana," traditional music, readings from Montgomery's work (including Anne of Green Gables), period games, ice cream socials, barn dances, fish-tasting feasts, and a memorial service for Montgomery. Those are just a few of the events.

Of course if you do visit PEI where else is there to stay but Dalvay by the Sea Hotel, now famous as the "White Sands Hotel" featured in the Sullivan Entertainment production (where Anne delivers a fine performance of "The Highwayman"). Today, the Dalvay retains its reverence for a quieter time. There are no telephones, no radios and no televisions in any of the guest rooms. Visitors are encouraged to read by one of the over sized fireplaces (my hubby would love that), or play the piano, or go for a walk by the beach.


Sunday, December 7, 2008

Be always mindful of Jesus and Mary and do not fear any enemy.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

How to pray the rosary

I posted a Youtube video a while back on the history of the Rosary and was then asked to explain how the Rosary is prayed, well, I'm sorry it took so long, but here it is.

1. Make the sign of the cross
2. Say the Apostles Creed
3. Say the Our Father
4. Say three Hail Marys
5. Say the Glory Be
6. Announce the first Mystery and say the Our Father
7. Say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery
8. Say the Glory Be
9. Say the O My Jesus
10. Announce the second Mystery and say the Our Father
11. Say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery
12. Say the Glory Be
13. Say the O My Jesus
14. Announce the third Mystery and say the Our Father
15. Say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery
16. Say the Glory Be
17. Say the O My Jesus
18. Announce the fourth Mystery and say the Our Father
19. Say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery
20. Say the Glory Be
21. Say the O My Jesus
22. Announce the fifth Mystery and say the Our Father
23. Say ten Hail Marys while meditating on the Mystery
24. Say the Glory Be
25. Say the O My Jesus
26. Say the Hail Holy Queen

Monday, December 1, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend

Paul and I spent Thanksgiving day at his mom's, and we had a great time. The food was wonderful, especially the stuffing (I love stuffing). I think Paul had about six servings of turkey and one serving of everything else. The turkey was really good, and I would have had more, but then I wouldn't have room left for more stuffing. Yummmmmmmm!!!

The next day we went back to his mom's. I wanted to learn how to make cookies, (bon-bons, & spritz) so I spent the day helping (more like slowing down) Sharon and Daria (sisters-in-law). It was a lot of fun.

After the Holidays are over Paul's mom is going to teach me how to make bread.

Saturday my mom came over to help me fix the branches on the Christmas tree, then went spent the whole day shopping for ornaments and other decorations. We haven't decorated the tree yet but the mantle looks really cute.

My mom went to Mass with us on Sunday morning then we went out to brunch.

Then Paul and I went home to take a nap.

We had a wonderful weekend, and I hope all of you did too. I would love to hear your stories as well.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Friday, November 21, 2008

Novena for Motherhood

I have recently joined Catholic Answers and I found this in one of the forums, and I thought it is something that should be passed around. Originally the intention was for "For God to send healthy babies to all the couples on CAF", but I changed it just a bit.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with a Novena, it is a prayer (or several prayers) that are said for nine days. The prayer changes with each intention.

Most Blessed Trinity, I, Your child, thank You for all the gifts and privileges which You granted to St. Gerard, especially for those virtues with which You adorned him on earth and the glory which You now impart to him in heaven. Accomplish Your work, Oh Lord, so that Your kingdom may come about on earth. Through his merits, in union with those of Jesus and Mary, grant me the grace for which I ask...(For God to send healthy babies to all the couples around the world trying to conceive) And you, my powerful intercessor, St. Gerard, always so ready to help those who have recourse to you, pray for me. Come before the throne of Divine Mercy and do not leave without being heard. To you I confide this important and urgent affair...(For God to send healthy babies to all the couples around the world trying to conceive)Graciously take my cause in hand and do not let me end this novena without having experienced in some way the effects of your intercession.


Thursday, November 20, 2008

Padre Pio

Francesco, named in honor of St. Francis of Assisi, was born to Giuseppa and Grazio Forgione, peasant farmers, in the small Italian village of Pietrelcina on May 25, 1887. From his childhood, it was evident that he was a special child of God. Francesco was very devout even as a child, and at an early age felt drawn to the priesthood. He became a Capuchin novice at the age of sixteen and received the habit in 1902. Francesco was ordained to the priesthood in 1910 after seven years of study and became known as Padre Pio.On September 20, 1918, Padre Pio was kneeling in front of a large crucifix when he received the visible marks of the crucifixion, making him the first stigmatized priest in the history of Church. The doctor who examined Padre Pio could not find any natural cause for the wounds. Upon his death in 1968, the wounds were no longer visible. In fact, there was no scaring and the skin was completely renewed. He had predicted 50 years prior that upon his death the wounds would heal. The wounds of the stigmata were not the only mystical phenomenon experienced by Padre Pio.The blood from the stigmata had an odor described by many as similar to that of perfume or flowers, and the gift of bilocation was attributed to him. Padre Pio had the ability to read the hearts of the penitents who flocked to him for confession which he heard for ten or twelve hours per day. Padre Pio used the confessional to bring both sinners and devout souls closer to God; he would know just the right word of counsel or encouragement that was needed. Even before his death, people spoke to Padre Pio about his possible canonization. He died on September 23, 1968 at the age of eighty-one. His funeral was attended by about 100,000 people.On June 16, 2002, over 500,000 Padre Pio devotees gathered in Rome to witness Pope John Paul II proclaim Padre Pio, Saint Pio of Pietrelcina. The Padre Pio Foundation and many benefactors traveled to Rome, San Giovanni Rotondo, Pietrelcina, Piana Romana and many other holy places to celebrate Padre Pio's Canonization.Pope John Paul II - Homily at the Canonization of Saint Pio of Pietrelcina, Capuchin Priest - 16 June 2002 1. "For my yoke is easy and my burden light" (Mt 11,30). Jesus' words to his disciples, which we just heard, help us to understand the most important message of this solemn celebration. Indeed, in a certain sense, we can consider them as a magnificent summary of the whole life of Padre Pio of Pietrelcina, today proclaimed a saint. The evangelical image of the "yoke" recalls the many trials that the humble Capuchin of San Giovanni Rotondo had to face. Today we contemplate in him how gentle the "yoke" of Christ is, and how truly light is his burden when it is borne with faithful love. The life and mission of Padre Pio prove that difficulties and sorrows, if accepted out of love, are transformed into a privileged way of holiness, which opens onto the horizons of a greater good, known only to the Lord. 2. "But may I never boast except in the cross of Our Lord Jesus Christ" (Gal 6,14). Is it not, precisely, the "glory of the Cross" that shines above all in Padre Pio? How timely is the spirituality of the Cross lived by the humble Capuchin of Pietrelcina. Our time needs to rediscover the value of the Cross in order to open the heart to hope. Throughout his life, he always sought greater conformity with the Crucified, since he was very conscious of having been called to collaborate in a special way in the work of redemption. His holiness cannot be understood without this constant reference to the Cross. In God's plan, the Cross constitutes the true instrument of salvation for the whole of humanity and the way clearly offered by the Lord to those who wish to follow him (cf. Mk 16,24). The Holy Franciscan of the Gargano understood this well, when on the Feast of the Assumption in 1914, he wrote: "In order to succeed in reaching our ultimate end we must follow the divine Head, who does not wish to lead the chosen soul on any way other than the one he followed; by that, I say, of abnegation and the Cross" (Epistolario II, p. 155). 3. "I am the Lord who acts with mercy" (Jer 9,23). Padre Pio was a generous dispenser of divine mercy, making himself available to all by welcoming them, by spiritual direction and, especially, by the administration of the sacrament of Penance. I also had the privilege, during my young years, of benefitting from his availability for penitents. The ministry of the confessional, which is one of the distinctive traits of his apostolate, attracted great crowds of the faithful to the monastery of San Giovanni Rotondo. Even when that unusual confessor treated pilgrims with apparent severity, the latter, becoming conscious of the gravity of sins and sincerely repentant, almost always came back for the peaceful embrace of sacramental forgiveness. May his example encourage priests to carry out with joy and zeal this ministry which is so important today, as I wished to confirm this year in the Letter to Priests on the occasion of Holy Thursday. 4. "You, Lord, are my only good". This is what we sang in the responsorial psalm. Through these words, the new Saint invites us to place God above everything, to consider him our sole and highest good. In fact, the ultimate reason for the apostolic effectiveness of Padre Pio, the profound root of so much spiritual fruitfulness can be found in that intimate and constant union with God, attested to by his long hours spent in prayer and in the confessional. He loved to repeat, "I am a poor Franciscan who prays" convinced that "prayer is the best weapon we have, a key that opens the heart of God". This fundamental characteristic of his spirituality continues in the "Prayer Groups" that he founded, which offer to the Church and to society the wonderful contribution of incessant and confident prayer. To prayer, Padre Pio joined an intense charitable activity, of which the "Home for the Relief of Suffering" is an extraordinary expression. Prayer and charity, this is the most concrete synthesis of Padre Pio's teaching, which today is offered to everyone. 5. "I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because ... these things ... you have revealed to little ones" (Mt 11,25). How appropriate are these words of Jesus, when we think of them as applied to you, humble and beloved Padre Pio. Teach us, we ask you, humility of heart so we may be counted among the little ones of the Gospel, to whom the Father promised to reveal the mysteries of his Kingdom. Help us to pray without ceasing, certain that God knows what we need even before we ask him. Obtain for us the eyes of faith that will be able to recognize right away in the poor and suffering the face of Jesus. Sustain us in the hour of the combat and of the trial and, if we fall, make us experience the joy of the sacrament of forgiveness. Grant us your tender devotion to Mary, the Mother of Jesus and our Mother. Accompany us on our earthly pilgrimage toward the blessed homeland, where we hope to arrive in order to contemplate forever the glory of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008



Lord, I believe in you: increase my faith.

I trust in you: strengthen my trust.

I love you: let me love you more and more.

I am sorry for my sins: deepen my sorrow.

I worship you as my first beginning,

I long for you as my last end,

I praise you as my constant helper, and

call on you as my loving protector.

Guide me by your wisdom,

Correct me with your justice,

Comfort me with your mercy,

Protect me with your power.

I offer you, Lord, my thoughts: to be

fixed on you;

My words: to have you for their theme;

My actions: to reflect my love for you;

My sufferings: to be endured for your

greater glory.

I want to do what you ask of me:

In the way you ask,

For as long as you ask,

Because you ask it.

Lord, enlighten my understanding,

Strengthen my will,

Purify my heart, and make me holy.

Help me to repent of my past sins and

to resist temptation in the future.

Help me to rise above my human

weaknesses and to grow stronger as a


Let me love you, my Lord and my

God, and see myself as I really am:

a pilgrim in this world,

a Christian called to respect

and love

all whose lives I touch,

those in authority over me

or those under my authority,

my friends and my enemies.

Help me to conquer anger with gentleness,

Greed by generosity,

Apathy by fervor.

Help me to forget myself and reach out

toward others.

Make me prudent in planning,

courageous in taking risks.

Make me patient in suffering,

unassuming in prosperity.

Keep me, Lord, attentive at prayer,

Temperate in food and drink,

Diligent in my work,

Firm in my good intentions.

Let my conscience be clear,

my conduct without fault,

my speech blameless,

my life well-ordered.

Put me on guard against my human


Let me cherish your love for me,

Keep your law, and

Come at last to your Salvation.

Teach me to realize that this world is


That my true future is the happiness of


That life on earth is short,

And the life to come eternal.

Help me to prepare for death with a

proper fear of judgment, but a

greater trust in your goodness.

Lead me safely through death to the

endless joy of heaven.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

The Butterfly Award!

Jean has kindly awarded me this beautiful award. Thank you so much!

The rules for this award are:

1. Pick ten people and pass this award to them.
2. Then contact them and let them know that you have chosen them and their blog for the award.
3. Also link back to the person who gave you the award.

I bestow this award on the following people:

10. Jean

Friday, November 14, 2008

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Just recently, someone asked the question "why do bad things happen to innocent people?". I decided to do some exploring on the web for the best answer to the question. Now, this may not be "the best" answer, but I liked it enough to share.

Please click here.

And please, let me know what you think!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Background on the Holy Rosary

I know there are still 5 days of the France trip I still need to post, and I'm sorry it's taking me so long, just bear with me. I should have at least 2 more days up before the end of the week.

Thanks for being patient.

Monday, November 10, 2008

My life has become wearisome; now, however, I do not fear even death for I know that you are my intercessor with your Son, to Whose mercy I entrust myself from this moment on and at every moment of my years to come.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Ave Maria

Day 4

We had breakfast at the Hotel, checked out, and then it was off to Mass. After Mass we went to Confession. Confession took a while since there was no real line or organization, it was also my first experience with a face to face set up, I don't think I cared for that too much.

Since today was our last day in Lourdes we went to fill our bottles with Holy Water, and I also had a few candles to light. On our way back to the Hotel to collect our bags we hit every shop around. Once we had our bags we headed towards the train station. After buying our tickets the 3 of us sat down to eat the sandwiches we picked up along the way.

The train ride to Carcasson only took about 2 1/2 hours. Once we arrived and figured out where our Hotel was, we headed to it, on foot, dragging our luggage across town. It seemed painful at the time, but it was part of the fun.

We were all very pleased with the Hotel, it was very cute, and the lady at the desk was helpful and friendly. Once we got cleaned up, our trek to the Fortress began, it wasn't easy, but it was worth it. It's the largest medieval fortress in Europe, a walled city full of hotels, restaurants, and shops. We walked around the outer part of the city for most of the evening, well, until we had to look for food. The restaurant we picked looked very nice, but it took almost 15 minutes (maybe longer actually) to take our order. The food was very good. To start Sharon and I had an almond pate (it was really good!!), and Paul had onion soup. For the main course I had braised pork with white beans, Paul had a steak, and I think Sharon had turkey, it's all a little blurry.

After dinner it was time to walk back to the hotel, but first we had to go the a bridge for an awesome night time view of the castle. Paul took a great picture!!

Then off to bed.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Friday, October 31, 2008

Day 3

At 7:30 in the AM we were hunting down a place to have breakfast, we stopped at one place that advertised breakfast but didn't serve any (?), and the lady working there was sooooo RUDE!!! So we kept on walking and stumbled across an Irish Pub, so we ate there. The 3 of us had scrambled eggs and bacon.

Next we were on our way to 9:00 Mass, and since we had lots of time we shopped. Well, we looked, no buying took place until the morning we left. The shops were really nice quality so it wasn't easy decide what we wanted. Mass was interesting, and the Hymn at the end was awful. I'm not really used to a Novus Ordo Mass, so it's always a little strange for me. At the end of Mass they let us know about a movie that would be playing that morning on St. Bernadette and where we could find the information center.

Our next stop was the information center which really wasn't a whole lot of help, then we made our way to the movie. The movie turned out to be about miracles, it was interesting but the movie could have been cut in half. We were then told where to find the St. Bernadette movie. The movie wasn't very long but it gave just enough information about her life.

Next was the getting in line to see the Grotto and of course we were in the wrong line. Once we were in the correct line it wasn't too long before we were able to walk through it. The rock is smooth from all the hands that have touched it for so many years, and the spring (which didn't exist until Mary appeared to Bernadette and told her to dig for it) was rushing, crystal-clear, from which everyone collects their Holy Water. It was a wonderful experience. As you walk out of the Grotto you come across a large section of candles, and we each lit one for our special intentions. It was the first time I've ever lit a candle, but it wasn't my last.

Lunch was next on our minds, so we were on the look out. Sharon and I had Lasagna and Paul had steak and fries. I know, I know, we should be trying as many french dishes as possible, well Lourdes is not the place for that. They have many tourist all year and they cater to all of them. You'll find an Italian Restaurant or an Irish Pub before you find a traditional French Restaurant.

Then we took a nap.

After nap time, we hurried to the train station, just to clear up some things about our tickets. It's a good thing we did though, on our way back we noticed a blue line on the sidewalk and realized if we followed the line it was like following the footsteps of St. Bernadette. The footsteps led us to her Parish Church, which is actually a new church (the other one burned down) which has the original Baptismal font. We would have gone inside if it weren't for the funeral taking place. It's bad enough we crashed a funeral in Rome, I had no desire to do it again. Next we saw the front of the house where her father was born, followed by the Mill where St. Bernadette was born and I believe she lived there until she was about 10. We continued to follow the footsteps which led us to the Miraculous Medal Museum, it was tiny, mainly a shop, with few historical items. The footsteps then took us to the Cachot (dungeon) where St. Bernadette and her family had to live when they lost the Mill. It's extremely small.

The next item on our list was the St. Bernadette Museum, it took forever to find the place. The museum had personal items, stories, and much more.

We started back towards the Grotto and toured the Crypt, the Immaculate Conception Basilica, and the Rosary Basilica. I love all of the time, detail, and love that went into these old Churches, I can't imagine anyone being able to day dream or lose sight of what they're there for.

Now we were on the hunt for the entrance to the trail of the Stations of the Cross, it wasn't easy to find, and once we did find it, and we came to the first station we realized we were going the WRONG WAY!!! The first station was actually the last. Well, this was not ideal, but our feet/legs/bodies were in so much pain already (mine was anyhow) we decided to keep on going, and we got some strange/dirty looks along the way.

After that we had dinner, and participated in another Rosary Procession.

Then it was time for bed.

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