Lent

I remember when I converted to Catholicism Lent was a foreign concept to me. Don’t get me wrong I knew about it, even thought I knew what it was all about. I grew up in a predominantly Catholic area so I grew up to expectt that a few weeks leading up to Easter we’d have fish for lunch. My friends talked about “giving up” snacks or dessert or soda. We didn’t practice Lent though. It’s just not something that is done in the Mormon church so my first Lent was a very interesting experience. I was in RCIA and serious preparation for entrance in to the church was beginning. I don’t remember what I gave up but with a young baby and a toddler I’m pretty sure it was just a chaotic time and I probably didn’t do much. Since then Lent has been a hit or miss for me as far as prayer, fasting and almsgiving. I do really good some years and others I’m just in survival mode. A few years ago someone pointed out to me that Lent isn’t just about giving things up. They described how they chose to add something in that they don’t usually do in order to grow spiritually. I LOVED that idea. That year I started adding in a Rosary on Friday afternoons. It was probably my favorite Lent ever. One Lent I decided to give up listening to secular music and listened to nothing but Christian or Classical music. Again, a total winner. This year I’ve decided to add something and give up something.

I’ll be using this devotional that I found for free on Amazon to do a devotional through the names of Christ. I think this will be very interesting and will help me get back into a routine of spending some daily time with the Lord. I’m really hit or miss in this area of my life right now and I’d like to become more consistent. As part of my devotional time I plan on praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet, one of my absolute favorite meditations.

In January we participated in the K-Love 30 Day challenge and listened to nothing but Christian music for 30 days. I love how different my days feel when I do that. After the 30 days was over though the radio station got switched. Don’t get me wrong…I love pop music, country music, even a little rap now and then but I don’t feel the same when I listen to that music as I do when I listen to music that focuses on praising and uplifting. So for Lent I’m going back to only Christian music, with a little Classical and maybe some Jazz thrown in for good measure 🙂

I am also giving up wearing pants on Ash Wednesday, the Fridays of Lent and the Easter Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Sunday). I already am skirts and dresses only for Sundays so that would include Easter Sunday. Why am I doing this? I’m not really sure! I’ve always been fascinated with women who are dresses/skirts only. I felt convicted last year to go back to wearing only skirts and dresses to church again after years of wearing pants. When I was thinking about what I was going to give up this year this idea popped in to my head right away. I don’t know what might come out of it but I feel it was the Holy Spirit working in me so I’m just gonna go with it and see where it goes!  And just for some accountability I’ll be sharing my outfits here with you! So here’s todays’ outfit.

Glittery pink top: Walmart ($7!!)

Glittery pink top: Walmart ($7!!)

Black jersey knit skirt- Motherhood Maternity Black Footless tights: George at Walmart Fuschia flats: American Eagle for Payless ($10 on a BOGO!!!)

Black jersey knit skirt- Motherhood Maternity
Black Footless tights: George at Walmart
Fuschia flats: American Eagle for Payless ($10 on a BOGO!!!)

Close up of the flats. I love these shoes!!

Close up of the flats. I love these shoes!!

As a family we will be participating in Operation Rice Bowl by Catholic Relief Services as part of PSR service project. But I’ll post more about that on Friday. I hope you have a wonderful Ash Wednesday and a very blessed Lenten season.

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What I Didn’t Wear Sunday

I was fully planning on a What I Wore Sunday post today. I was gonna look all cute in my favorite grey sweater dress, herringbone tights and black boots from Kohl’s. I bought this outfit for my great-grandmother’s funeral after Thanksgiving and it’s become one of my favorites this winter. There’s just something so cozy about a sweater dress!

grey sweater dress

Instead we woke up this morning to wet roads and a forecast of icy conditions moving in to the area. After speaking to a couple of people who live closer to our church Steven decided to cancel PSR and quickly went to fetch our boys who had spent the night with the grandparents. Within a few hours this was the view outside our window:

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I LOVE how pretty trees look when they are iced over, but that’s about where my love affair ends! This mama don’t play with ice. So instead of putting on my cute sweater dress it’s now 11:56 and I’m rocking this:

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Oh well! What are you gonna do? If we had thought better we would have gone to Mass last night but we didn’t so….here’s to next week! Since this isn’t actually a church post I won’t be linking up to FLAP but here’s to getting back in to the swing of things!

WIWS-I’m Back!!

Yeah so the last 2 weeks I forgot to have Steven take pictures for What I Wore Sunday. But today, today I remembered! So without further ado here’s my WIWS I’m Back edition!

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From somewhere exotic I hear Tyra Banks screaming “NO!! That is NOT how we take a photo! Honey child you better WORK (snap! snap!) Now once again with some attitude please!”

Sorry Ms. Tyra! Honey, take another one please!

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Jean Jacket- Bitten by Sarah Jessica Parker for Steve And Barry’s
Blouse- Mossimo for Target
Tank (under the shirt cause it’s a little see-through!)- Old Navy
Slacks- Worthington for JC Penny
Tights- Simply Vera by Vera Wang for Kohl’s
Pumps- Predictions for PayLess
Jewelry- Premier Designs

“Much better!”

Thanks Ms. Tyra! (Yes someone watches a little too much America’s Next Top Model! Shhhh…don’t tell!!) 🙂

Here’s a closer up look at the pumps because you can’t really see them in the pictures and  I LOVE these shoes! I’ve had them for ages but they are still in the best condition. That’s what I love about a good shoe.

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brown suede with brown leather trim and brown leather bow

And a closer look at the blouse. I love this top. It’s one of my favorite’s for fall. I love the print and the little feminine touches like the puffy sleeves and just the overall flowy feel.

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Today was just one of those Sundays. We didn’t have Jonah or Micah with us because they spent the night with Steven’s dad. We thought we’d get up early and go to 8:00 Mass before PSR…hahahahahaha!!! Every time we say that we should just throw our heads back and laugh because it NEVER happens! But we had a slow(ish) morning which was nice because I got to enjoy my coffee and even made orange sweet rolls for breakfast. Yum!

My PSR class talked about the Gifts of the Holy Spirit today. We spent a lot of time in the Bible looking up scriptures and just diving in to the Word which was great! The kids made collages by writing the name of each gift on a dove and gluing it on to newsprint paper. They turned out really cute but of course I didn’t take my camera so I don’t have any pictures to share. But next week we are talking about the Fruits of the Spirit and will be doing something similar with fruit die cuts so I’ll try to remember to take a picture of that one!

We attended 11:30 Mass and once again I spent the majority of the time in the vestibule with Eli. He is in the process of cutting 2 teeth and he has just been a nightmare lately! I’m not sure how much more of this I can take. I guess I can’t rate him too harshly since he wasn’t feeling well so I guess a solid C for Mass behavior is still OK. Steven said Brianna did really good during Mass so an A for her today! Yea!!

After Mass we went over to Steven’s dad’s to pick up the boys and have lunch. His stepsisters were in town so we got to spend some time with them which was nice! They are a crazy group of girls and we love ’em! We always have so much fun together! Of course I spent a lot of time down in the man cave with my father in law watching the Bengals game. What an incredible game!! They still lost but wow! That last quarter was awesome! (Note to Andy Dalton- you’re killin’ me man!!!)

After we left Steven’s dad’s we came home and Steven went to studying more for his series 7 qualification exam and the kids pretty much scattered. A little light cleaning for me (you know, a mom’s work doesn’t even get the Sabbath off!!) but it was an overall quiet afternoon/evening. We had a simple dinner of vegetable beef soup and sweet potato muffins. And then it was clean up toy time, brush teeth, jammies and off to bed. I’m sitting here listening to a perfectly quiet house and I have to say it is lovely!

Well, that was our Sunday! I hope yours was wonderful and that you have a very blessed week!

Check out more WIWS fashion posts over at Fine Linen and PurpleWh.

What I Wore Sunday- My First Time!

I’ve decided to join in with the link up over at Fine Linen and Purple for What I Wore Sunday. They started this link up party a year ago to encourage women to dress their best for Sunday services and to encourage each others in their efforts to do so. When I was growing up it was pretty much required that you dressed up for church. There were no jeans, no tennis shoes, no shorts. Women didn’t even wear pants to church. Men were almost always in suits and ties, in the very least in dress shirts and ties. When I converted it was a shock for me to see how people dressed for Mass. I know that Jesus would rather have us there in church dressed in whatever we can than us not be there at all. But I think that also takes a lot of the responsibility off of us to put forth an effort. I have never felt comfortable going to Mass in jeans or shorts. I can probably count on one hand the number of times that I have done it because I’m just so uncomfortable with it. It was even hard for me to get used to wearing dress pants to church, although now I admit there is nothing better than throwing on a nice pair of dress pants when it’s 20 degrees outside!

As a SAHM there aren’t many days that I get to dress up. My mom uniform is usually jeans and a cute top. So Sundays I like to get dressed in something nice. It helps to remind me that Sunday is a day that’s supposed to be set apart from every other day. We are going to meet Jesus in the Mass. It feels like a day to wear something more special than my fraying jeans and my Bengals t-shirt. So, here’s what I wore yesterday.

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Sweater Dress: MUDD from Kohl’s

Tights: Simply Vera by Vera Wang from Kohl’s

Boots: Target

Jewelry: Premier Designs

I remembered I wanted to take this picture after a very long day. We left the house at 8:30 to get to St. Joe’s by 9 to start setting up for PSR. I taught PSR from 9:30 to 11. We went to Mass from 11:30 to 12:30. After that we took the kids to Burger King for lunch and then went back to the church for the annual Cemetery Visitation at 2 pm. After that I had a CRHP (Christ Renews His Parish- pronounced chirp) meeting at 4 until 6. When we finally got home my hair was a disaster and I was about to get undressed when I told Steven I needed him to take a picture for this post! lol- so not the greatest picture but hopefully I’ll get in a habit of it and remember to take pictures before PSR or Mass instead of 7 at night!

It was a busy and long day like most of our Sundays. But it was a great day! Before I sign off just a few pictures from the cemetery visitation. Steven’s uncle Keith, who died in 1976 in a tragic accident at the age of 21 is buried here. Steven’s grandparents will be buried next to him. It’s become a nice tradition to attend the cemetery visitation and spend some time praying for Keith and all of the dearly departed.

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So that was our Sunday. Check out some more posts over at the link up!