Thursday, August 23, 2012

Saltdogs Baseball 2012

We took the kids to see the Saltdogs play Saturday night. It was chilly enough that everybody wore pants and sweaters.
FAT Hobbit.
Taking a bunch of little kids to anything is like bringing a bunch of frisky puppies. They had a blast especially watching the AMAZING fireworks show at the end.
I thought this was cute of Rose kissing Clairvaux. She was born motherly.Lillie watched the entire game pretty much motionless.  She was enamored by the players.  A friend gave us tickets a couple days later to go again and she couldn't wait.  She kept her eye on a certain player, Stephen Holdren.  I overheard her and Dominic talking later that day about who was better Stephen Holdren or Mike Provencher. 

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

The hidden life

A note sent to me from my sweet mother last month.
Amongst her many gifts, letter writing and the use of words is by far her best. My mother writes more people than anyone else I know. After my father's funeral, she had a couple thousand thank you notes to write. She had them done within a month if not sooner AND she really wrote each person a personal note. I always tell her what a unique gift she has. Her letters sing when opened. I have kept every single note, letter, package she has sent to me.
I especially loved her words in this little note. God really does see absolutely everything we do. He sees EVERYTHING all the time. I was aware of this several times today. We had about an hours worth of errands to do and Damaris was crying the whole time. Dominic turned to me and asked if it was hard for me to listen to her. I told him of course it is, but can you only imagine all the souls in purgatory that are getting our prayers of sacrifice and imagine if we offered it all up for abortion to end. His effervescent smile of knowing what I was talking about rang true to my heart. He replied, "You mean, you've been praying this whole time?"
I hope I always remember that our reward usually does come in the next life and to stop waiting for it here. Before I had children, a priest told me to pray that I will have final perseverance. I am slowly understanding what he meant. One of the things I am most grateful my parents taught us by example and words is that when the going gets harder, put your head down, don't complain and push harder through. I have thought of that so often during labor, daily life with children, exercising, and many other moments. I relate this wisdom of theirs to even the smallest detail of driving today. I could have lost my patience, but I did hear their words and prayed, smiled at the other children, tried hard to not let them feel my annoyance, and tried to make the trip uneventful in regards to myself.
Most, if not ALL of our life is hidden. In reflection of just today, it was just me and our children for 10 hours by ourselves mostly in our home. No one, but God saw anything I did for them and I know he saw everything. I drove past a nursing home the other day and saw one of the employees pushing a resident outside. It was an especially hot day. It struck me because I wondered how many jobs would people do if they weren't getting paid. How many people would stay at their current jobs if they weren't getting paid with money? Mothers are amazing people. It made me giggle at all my good and holy friends ever doubt they are "good" mothers. They have given their lives completely for the care of another human being usually under brutal conditions and little appreciation by that human being. Would that nursing home employee be pushing that resident outside in the heat if she was being yelled at and completely unappreciated by the staff, and most of all not getting paid?
Luke 22:19 applies directly: "This is my body which will be given up for YOU." Every time I hear this during mass, I always hold my baby extra tight and smile a bit inwardly. The words of consecration apply directly to motherhood. This truly was our body given up for them. We give every ounce of self to them each day. How close we must feel to Christ! His words are our words each day.
Press on my friends. Our reward will be grand. As my mother's notes alway continually remind me of where I am going, I want to encourage you again, those who've chosen the hidden life, and although it apparently seems that no one knows or sees your work, the best news is that GOD SEES EVERYTHING BIG AND SMALL that you do for Him and your family.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Baby reads

It really is a hoot. She really enjoys looking at books. If she is screaming, the big kids will bring a book over to her, open it, and she is immediately quiet. Smart baby.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Children and Mass

I came across this beautifully written paragraph the other day regarding children and the mass in the book "A Little Way of Homeschooling" by Suzie Andres.
"A good lady I know once made a wonderful comparison; she likened learning to love the Mass to learning to love the symphony. Children won't learn to love the symphony by being forced to attend and sit still and to "appreciate" the music. Instead, exposing them to the music you love, talking about the instruments, and teaching them about great composers is much more likely to get them interested and to develop in them the same love for music that you have.
Mass is just like that. If a parent truly loves the Mass and believes it is heaven on earth, the children can't help but fall in love with it too. Just like the symphony, however, having daily Mass attendance forced probably will not help the children develop the love for God that is already written on their hearts. When we totally fall in love with Jesus, then we want to spend time with Him, and we want to learn about His Church."
I thought this was such a magnificent comparison. It really is true when you delve further into children and teaching anything for that matter. They will love what you love and what you spend time showing them. I liken the analogy to sports also. We are Nebraska football fans. We watch every game, yell at the TV, buy jerseys of our favorite players, make great food on Saturdays to celebrate. Guess What? Our children love Nebraska football. As the second eldest of ten children, I was able to witness first hand the announcement of each of my new siblings.. My parents always told us with delight and excitement. So, my brothers and sisters associate babies as being something good. We all still throw a party every time somebody is pregnant no matter if we know you or not. When I was growing up, babies were GREAT news.
I have just started focusing my attention a little bit more during mass to MY participation and attention to detail of my responses, how well I sing, how long do I genuflect before going in the pew. I try to smile at the kids during mass and hold their hand. We are shifting a little from the "perfect mass" attendance posture and focusing more on the true meaning of the Holy Mass.  John always tells the kids "Every Sunday is a little Easter."   Just like teaching them to love other things, I pray they love the mass.
I know this is a small detail, but instead of announcing "Alright, we are going to mass at Noon. Please get your shoes on." I have started saying, "Who wants to go see my friend with me?"