Thursday, June 18, 2015

Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real

Linking up with the lovely ladies over at, 
~ Capturing the context of contentment in everyday life ~
~Pretty~
A drawing in progress by Sofie. 
She's been working on eyes lately...

~Happy~
This girl, she's the happiest when she's creating! 
Meet Mr. Blue Bat...


~Funny~
So much funny in this...
Sofie making a funny face because of the scene from the backseat, 
a Furby that was found in the alley and goes everywhere GiGi goes,
and GiGi, playing the ukulele while wearing a jacket--in Florida!


~Real~
I don't normally buy CDs these days
but when I do it's because it's really good Christ centered music.
As my daughter Cheyenne would say "good music brings you closer to Christ", 
this album by Audrey Assad is not only good, it's REAL music that speaks to your soul.


For more Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real posts be sure to visit,

God bless!


Thursday, June 11, 2015

Cheyenne's Pretty, Happy, Funny Real Post

Today I have a little bit of time to myself aside from babysitting my cute little cousins. This past week I have managed to snap a few pictures for this new blog post idea. My mom did one last week so now it's my turn!


-Pretty-

The finished painting! I had fun doing this for my Aunt. Can't wait to receive 
my package of art supplies from my mom so I can work on some watercolor projects!



-Happy-

Last week my sister Phoenix came down to visit me. I was so happy to see her! 
We like to keep it simple so we went for some pizza and hung out at the park. 



-Funny-

This is my funny and cute cousin Micah. He was being silly this morning and decided 
to put his cereal on his head! Love this little guy! He is always making me laugh!



-Real-

This book is fantastic. It is full of truth. It has been a huge help in my spiritual journey. 
Thank you to my awesome spiritual director and friend Father Steve for sending this book to me!



Thank you for stopping by! 
God Bless!

Thursday, June 4, 2015

A First Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real Post

I've been following the lovely ladies over at Like Mother, Like Daughter for a while now and I really enjoy reading their posts about faith, family and crafting. They hold a weekly link up on Thursdays called Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real, that's meant to be a prompt in "Capturing the context of contentment in everyday life". Through the link up I've met some other wonderful and inspiring ladies of faith and thought me and Cheyenne could take turns each week and share a post. So, here we go!


~ Pretty ~
Tuesday, the 2nd, was my Goddaughter's birthday and after spending some time
 in Adoration I went to light a candle for her. This pretty votive had been left there...


~ Happy ~
Yesterday I finally finished piecing the blocks for my nephew's superhero quilt.
I trimmed them, after this picture was taken, and now they are ready to be sewn together into a top!


~ Funny ~
My husband Troy and I have been married for over 21 years. Originally we were married at the courthouse in Portsmouth,Virginia, but nine years ago yesterday, June 3rd, we celebrated the sacrament of marriage in the Catholic Church with all the trimmings--white dress, flowers, family, Eucharist and even a honeymoon to follow! Some of my favorite photos are the "funny" ones, here in this one we were walking down the aisle after the ceremony and my husband had just whispered to me, "we did it" and I exclaimed, "yes, we did!!" It's funny because of all we had gone through leading up to our big day, planning, travel, sick kids and stitches above my eyebrow exactly one week before!


~ Real ~
God is real and if we quiet ourselves we can hear him...
My prayer life has suffered lately and after my last post I've committed to working on it.
After dropping off church linens on Tuesday morning I went to the Adoration chapel to pray and have some quiet time alone with our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament and write in my journal. I was overcome with tears as I knelt before Him and saw what statue of Mary was displayed, the statues are changed according to the Marian Feasts and the May statue was still there, and what the prayer intention was, there is a frame that sits at the base of the altar that holds the monstrance and each day there's a different intention. 


For more Pretty, Happy, Funny, Real inspirations be sure to visit,

Monday, June 1, 2015

How I Pray...

Life has certainly been a whirlwind of sorts around here lately. On the Feast of Our Lady of Fatima we said goodbye to our daughter Cheyenne as she began her new adventure as a nanny. Exactly one week later we said goodbye to her twin sister, Phoenix, who also landed a nanny job just two hours away from Cheyenne. On Saturday, the 23rd, while helping Cheyenne with her blog post from afar, I had some time to do some reading and catch up with some of my favorite bloggers. I discovered that I had been tagged by the lovely Maurisa from Half A Dozen And More Productions to answer a few questions about "how I pray". I enjoyed reading her post and getting to know her a little better and was inspired to evaluate my own prayer life, which I confess has suffered more than I'd like since before the end of Lent. I mentioned in an earlier post that Lent this year was hard, but good. It was good because it was hard. I did some really hard self evaluating where my ego mind is concerned and through the challenge, exposed the selfishness, self pity and bitterness that before I was way too naive and prideful to believe I had reconciled with. What I've come to realize is, this sort of hard interior work must be ongoing work! One just doesn't put selfishness, self pity and bitterness aside once and think that's that--no, no, our nature, our human condition needs continual grace in order to properly deal with the thorns of selfishness, self pity and bitterness when they're at work in our lives. It's through prayer that we enter into the presence of the indwelling of God and receive the life of grace--this grace is just as necessary as the air we breathe, without it we die a slow and often times extremely painful spiritual death. 

Who Are You? This is a question we as a family talk about quite often. It's a question I've found myself asking many, many times before...who is Kim, really? Outside the labels we so easily attach to self these days in portraying our identity, my husband, my constant pillar of wisdom, reminds me that in thinking about who I am I should always remember that I am a child of God first before anything else. Sensitive, intuitive, creative, indecisive, and stubborn are a few of my personality traits. I met my husband Troy, of 21 years now, back when we were both in the Navy. We were stationed aboard the U.S.S. Shenandoah and worked across the hall from each other. He was an IM (instrumentman) and I was an IC (interior communication electrician). He worked on gauges and I worked on gyroscopes. Jimi Hendrix's song "All Along The Watchtower" was our connection and seven months later we were married at the courthouse in Portsmouth, Virginia. Seven months after we were married our twins were born, 11 weeks premature. Seven years after the twins were born, our daughter Sofia was born. Two and a half years later along came Gianna. In our family of six I'm the convert to Catholicism. My husband Troy is a revert. Phoenix and Cheyenne were eight years old and Sofia was 15 months old the day the three of them were baptized together on the Feast of the Lord's Baptism. The following year Gianna was baptized at the Easter Vigil when I was received into the Church. Besides living in Virginia we've lived in Colorado, Arizona, North Carolina, North Dakota, Texas and now reside in Florida. Not sure where we'll eventually settle down and call home but for now we're enjoying our time here. 

What is Your Vocation? Being a wife and mother was always what I wanted when I was a young girl, however it wasn't until about five years ago when I fully and intentionally embraced my vocation. The first three to four years of marriage and life with the twins was difficult. We experienced many challenges and once we pushed through, for years I struggled with feeling like I wasn't doing enough. I had created undue pressure and expectation on myself to do more. For years I thought I should finish college, I went back and forth, started and stopped before realizing what I really needed to do was embrace the gifts and blessings in front of me. Our kiddos have gone to public school, the twins went through middle school before homeschooling to graduation in 2012. Sofie went halfway through 4th and GiGi halfway through 2nd before full time homeschooling began in February, 2012. Homeschooling was hard at first. I went into it kicking and screaming so to speak, but I knew it was the best thing I could do for them at the time. It took a while to find our groove and what works for us, and Lord knows there were days when I wished they were in public school, but I'm glad to have stuck it out.

What is Your Prayer Routine for an Average Day? Typically I start each day with a cup of coffee while I read the daily readings using the Laudate app on my phone. My husband does the same and very often we'll discuss the readings with one another. After the readings I pray for family and friends' intentions. Quite often the Lord will show me something in the readings that will help me find focus for the day or help me be more specific in prayers for others.  

Do You Have a Devotion that is Particularly Important to You or Effective? Besides the Mass, going to Adoration at least once a week and spending quiet time in front of the Blessed Sacrament is particularly important to me. During Lent I found that writing in my journal while in Adoration became a great way for me to be honest with myself and was very helpful to look back on as a way of assessing progress in my prayer life, as well as realizing where I've fallen short. 

Do You have a Place, Habit, or Way of Praying? The way of praying that I find myself practicing most often is that of meditative prayer, especially when I'm in quilt making mode or some other creative endeavor. I try to walk at least three times a week, which is a great time for meditative prayer.

Do You Use Any Tools or Sacramentals? I wear a vintage Miraculous Medal that reminds me to pray daily for my daughters' purity. In our home we have many pieces of religious art and statues to be an ever present reminder of our faith and one of my favorite tools is the incenser that we have on our home altar, the buffet in our dining room.

"Behold, I build a house to the name of the Lord my God, 
to dedicate it to him, and to burn before Him sweet incense." 
2 Chronicles 2:4

  
What is Your Relationship to the Rosary? I love our Blessed Mother and I think the Rosary is a beautiful prayer, but I find it difficult to pray on my own. It's definitely an area in my prayer life I'd like to improve. This week I'm going to commit to taking a rosary with me on at least one of my walks. My favorite prayer for recitation is the Chaplet of Divine Mercy, especially the version found here on Youtube. 

Are There Any Books or Spiritual Works That are Important to Your Devotional Life? "Through The Year With Fulton Sheen", "Furrow", by St. Jose Maria Escriva, and a little devotion I learned as an Evangelical is to read a chapter a day, chapter matches whatever the date is for the day, from Proverbs. 

What is Your Most Recent Spiritual or Devotional Reading? At the beginning of Lent I started reading The Fire Within, by Fr. Thomas Dubay. I'm about halfway through the fifth chapter and would like to start over and take notes and highlight certain passages so they'll be easier to reference. During Lent each family in our parish was given a copy of the book "Four Signs Of A Dynamic Catholic", by Matthew Kelly and it was sort of our homework each week to read a chapter because the homilies would incorporate parts of the book. 

Are There Saints or Other Figures Who Inspire Your Prayer Life or Act as Patrons? St. Teresa of Avila is my Confirmation saint. St. Francis of Assisi and Saint Pope John Paul II are our family's patron saints. Saint Pope John Paul II holds a very special place in my heart, because of my great-grandmother, who was the seed of my Catholic faith journey.

Have You Had Any Unusual or Miraculous Experiences as a Result of Your Prayer Life? My journey of faith has been filled with many unusual and miraculous events. One that happened in the beginning of my Catholic journey was when I was still in RCIA. I was fascinated in learning more about the saints and had a book called 365 Saints. During that time I was pregnant and had read about Blessed Gianna, now Saint Gianna. I was so moved by her story that I had decided on Gianna for a girl name, after this Blessed Gianna. Unfortunately I miscarried, it was our third miscarriage. Two months later I was pregnant again. Before I found out I was pregnant I got into some poison ivy so bad that I needed to go on meds, oral steroids, antibiotics, antihistamines, plus a steroid creme, it was awful and I was out of my mind miserable!! When I found out I was pregnant I was worried that the meds would harm the baby. About 10 weeks into the pregnancy I started spotting and feared I would again miscarry. I prayed to Blessed Gianna and asked her to intercede on our behalf for protection of the baby and to guard against any ill effects from the meds I had taken.. I went on to deliver our Gianna via c-section on March 6, 2004. On April 10th I was received into the Church and Gianna was baptized. On May 16, 2004 Pope John Paul II canonized Saint Gianna. During my pregnancy with Gianna I had written to the then Blessed Gianna Society and told them my story and asked to be put on their prayer list. They sent me the most beautiful letter, photograph and prayer cards, all third class relics. They also sent a medal that was specially designed for the beatification of now St. Gianna which I pinned to our Gianna's baptismal gown. 

How do you pray?