March 27, 2008


I finally added the pregnancy ticker on the side. It shocked me when I saw that I am almost halfway there. I mean I knew it, but seeing the baby almost halfway to the house - it kinda feels like I'm carrying a ticking time bomb this time. I am so excited to meet this little person and to know what we're having (in 12 more days!!!), but I am definitely in NO rush to get this little one out any time soon. Yeah, I'll probably be singing to a different tune when it's in the middle of the hottest month of the year, and I've packed on about 20 more pounds, and the insomnia is killing me and my toes and fingers look like sausages......

But for now I'm enjoying my time in the second trimester - the sickness is gone, I can still sleep like a baby, and my belly isn't causing indigestion or discomfort yet. And I am loving all the movement that I can now feel. Hattie was a sloth in the womb; she hardly ever moved around. This one must have a quota of cartwheels that he/she has to fill by the end of the day because things are pretty active in my belly throughout the day, every day.

And I'm just gonna publicly predict that I think we're having a boy. The heartrate is WAY slower than Hattie's, this baby is WAY more active, and I just have a feeling. BUT I would love a little girl, too. I go back and forth from fantasizing about tea parties and dress up with my two girls to Hattie and me sitting in the stands cheering her brother on as he scores the winning touchdown for his peewee football team that his daddy is coaching (okay, that may be Sean's fantasy, not mine, but I can appreciate it and borrow it from time to time.) :0)

Either way, good times ahead!

March 25, 2008

Your Best Life Later

On Easter Sunday I decided that we should make a big breakfast before church since we weren’t going to eat lunch until around 2:00 pm. My dear sweet husband volunteered to make pancakes and bacon, his idea of breakfast perfection. I must say, it was really good! My husband is no chef, but he can go to town with pancakes, and he makes some seriously crispy bacon – just the way we like it! So after breakfast I didn’t have time to do all the dishes as I needed to get ready for church, so I left them to do later. We got ready and went to what was a beautiful Easter service and then came home.

I decided now was the best time to tackle those dishes because I knew I wouldn’t want to do them when I came home later that night from my folks’ house. I changed clothes and walked into the kitchen. The first thing that caught my eye was the frying pan with the cooled grease from the perfect bacon that Sean had fried earlier. At that moment something my mother told me struck me.

A while back we were talking about my grandmother, Hattie, who has been dead for around 5 years now. We were on the subject of what a hard life my grandmother had had in this world, and my mom started talking about my grandmother’s childhood. She said that Hattie had told her that they were so poor that they would often spread dried grease on homemade bread for a meal. They couldn’t even afford butter for every day use.

Seeing the dried grease in my frying pan and thinking about my grandmother, I went to my refrigerator, opened it, and saw staring back at me 3 different types of butter – salted real butter for Sean’s popcorn (another one of his specialties), unsalted butter for my baking, and a tub of yogurt butter spread to keep our behinds from expanding into next week. I have 3 types of butter in my fridge on any given day, and my grandmother had to spread grease on her bread, and that was a meal! How often do I eat buttered bread by itself for dinner? Never.

Why am I telling you all of this?

I just can’t get the sight of that grease out of my head. I can’t stop thinking about all of the butter sitting in my perfectly packed, cooled refrigerator, which sits in my perfectly packed, cooled house. I can’t stop thinking about how I complain about my small pantry every time I come home from the grocery store because I can’t find room to put everything in it.

Now, I’m not going to preach about the consumerism country that we live in, though it does fit in with my argument about what is truly godly and what is godless. No, what irks me is all of the preaching on the t.v. that I hear. All this nonsense about how “God will bless your life with STUFF if you will let Him.” It’s the whole, “Your Best Life Now” Osteen mumbo-jumbo. Who wants to live their best life now anyways? I’ll save my hay-day for the after-life, you know the never-ending choice of the two, thank you very much.

Let me tell you, my grandmother was the most deserving woman that I have ever known, yet God did not provide her with mansions, nice cars, or tons of money. He didn’t even provide her with butter for her bread most times. God doesn’t shower us with constant materialistic gifts if we love Him. He’s not dumb. Good parents don’t give their children what they want. They don’t shower them with things for fear that they will spoil and ruin their children. Every parent with any sense knows this. So why do so many people think that God is different? He is the perfect Father. He knows wealth could potentially ruin us. He warns us of it in the Bible:
I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God (Matthew 19:23-24).

I have been thinking about this non-stop for going on two days now, and it just hit me that my sweet, holy grandmother, who is the most amazing woman I have ever known, is so blessed because God sanctified her throughout her life with constant trials and hardship. We learn some holy lessons at the end of our trials. God uses the trials in our life to bring us closer to Him.

This is why I am repulsed when I look at these ministers wearing their expensive suits in their million dollar buildings (for they are NOT churches in my mind) preaching of all the things God wants us to have. What a contrast this vision is to that of many saints’ lives. Saint Theresa lived her life amidst the poor to serve them. St. Francis of Assisi was to be a wealthy inheritor of his father’s wealth but gave it all away to live a holy life in poverty. And then there’s Jesus, of course. I could go on, but pick up a book about the lives of the saints, those in God’s favor, and you will see how much of this world they did NOT have.

I am at the front of the line of people who pray for God to take away my hardship when I am in the midst of a trial, and I hope that in the future I will be able to look outside of myself and thank God for not only the blessings in my life but the trials as well.

And all that butter. Gosh. Well, I just feel sinful for having so much. I don’t feel rich, that’s for sure, but when compared to all of the people in the world, I AM rich in this world. That kinda shakes me a little, and I really feel compelled that I need to live more simply.

March 23, 2008

He is Risen!!!!

Happy Easter to all! We awoke this morning with joy and thanksgiving in our hearts as we celebrate that the Lord Jesus Christ has risen! Sean and I walked into Hattie's room this morning singing, "This is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad!" Then we got to repeat those words at mass this morning. Thankfully Hattie was very well-behaved during mass since our church doesn't have nursery on Easter Sunday, so we were able to really concentrate and listen during the service this morning. That is the best Easter present that she could have given her mama :)! Now we are home, and Hattie is napping before we are off to my parents' house to celebrate some more, so I thought I'd take a few minutes and post since its been SO long. I wanted to share some pictures of our Easter weekend so far.

1.) We took Hattie to our parish's annual Easter egg hunt yesterday afternoon. It was HOT, but she had a BLAST!
Hunting for eggs:

Hanging out with Daddy in the shade:

All tuckered out and waiting for her ice cream treat that the Knights of Colombus provided:

2.) Hattie's Easter egg basket that she awoke to this morning. Notice the theme: princesses, books, and candy - her 3 favorite things! I was so excited to get her her first barbie doll, too, as I was obsessed with them as a child.

3.) Then this morning on our way to mass, we stopped by Sean's parent's house since they live so close to our church to get some pictures taken of the 3 of us all dressed up in our Easter Sunday best!

Hattie had a hard time standing still:

And I just love this one:

My heart is overwhelmed with gladness on this Easter Sunday. First and most importantly, God has blessed us with His only Son who died on the cross for our sins. He has blessed me with a healthy and beautiful family - a caring, God-focused husband, a precious baby girl, and a tiny one forming in my womb. He has blessed me with the comforts of this world, something that many live without. He has blessed me with friends and family who I can laugh and cry with and share my life with. I am overwhelmed by His GRACE and MERCY. None of which I deserve at all.

God, my Father, thank you for sending your Son to die on the cross for the sins of the world!

Wisdom From the Pope

“The inalienable dignity of every human being and the rights which flow from that dignity - in the first place the right to life and the defense of life - are at the heart of the church's message." Pope John Paul ended his address, saying: "In spite of divisions among Christians, 'all those justified by faith through baptism are incorporated into Christ...brothers and sisters in the Lord.'" Pope John Paul 2