#SmallSuccess Thursday: My Brain is Scrambled Eggs

A friend sent me this a couple of weeks ago:

IMG_8268

So funny! What is my brain like then?

*****

I have so much to be thankful for this week!

1. In keeping with the scrambled eggs theme, I can’t get enough of them! Thank goodness all the eggs fit in just fine with Lent. I might starve without them.

2. I took a few pics of the kids getting ready for school. Speaking of eggs, my Drake cracks me up. He eats 3 fried eggs every morning, and he saves the yolks (his favorite) for last. What a goofball!

IMG_8252

I can’t leave out the rest of the kiddos! Kelsey (eating an egg sandwich) is truly thrilled I took her picture so early in the morning….

Erica wouldn’t even let me take her picture….Buh Bye!

IMG_8264

 *****

I’m about to eat an early lunch (scrambled eggs—big shocker!) and feed the little ones. We go through 8-9 dozen eggs a week around here, in case you wondered!

Count your blessings and read about other mom’s small successes over at CatholicMom! God bless.

Last Night, I Rocked Baby Jesus

For the life of me, I have no idea why my 17-month-old couldn’t sleep last night. Finally at 2:00 a.m., I brought him downstairs so my husband could get some sleep.

We rocked. I got him a cup of almond milk. We rocked some more. I turned on cartoons. I sang to him. I got him a snack, which he gobbled up. I gave him some water, and we rocked a million times more.

Was he still feeling sick? No, his ears and tummy seemed fine. Teething? Maybe. All I knew was he was fussy and just wouldn’t go back to sleep.

I started to half-ignore him, my patience wearing thin. I dutifully rocked him, sleepily browsing Facebook on my phone and trying not to snap. Nothing was helping him anyway!

Out of the blue, the Holy Spirit made me think of this scripture:

…for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.”  Matthew 25:35-36 NRSV

I began picturing Mother Mary rocking baby Jesus. Surely he was fussy or sick at times and she felt the same exhaustion!

madonnachild

My entire attitude changed. Peacefully, I held my baby tight to my chest, snuggling cheek to cheek. I softly whispered prayers in his ear. I’m doing this for you, Jesus. I’m doing this for You. He settled down about an hour later, sound asleep in my arms.

At 5:00 a.m. my big kids woke up to start getting ready for school. The peaceful feeling that had washed over me remained. Miraculously, I packed six school lunches and got breakfast for everyone without biting their heads off. I was tired, but kind to everyone!

I think I have been a stay-at-home mom for so long (16 years!) that I forget that I serve Jesus every day. At this season of my life, I can’t start an orphanage or leave my responsibilities to care for the poor. Right here, right now, what I am doing for my family is how Jesus wants me to serve Him. Am I treating my family how I would treat Jesus?

Many of you reading this may not be in the midst of raising babies and toddlers. Maybe you are

  • tolerating a not-so-nice coworker.
  • primary caregiver for a sick parent.
  • in the middle of health problems yourself, fighting to stay optimistic and kind to others.
  • in a quarrel with your spouse, refusing to say you are sorry.
  • having a super hard time being kind to your rebellious teen.

Maybe my Holy Spirit moment will help you deal with whatever challenges you face today. Imagine the challenging situation or person is Jesus giving you the opportunity to serve Him. Jesus will not fail to pour plenty of grace, mercy, and peace upon you!

 

Small Success Thursday: Rosary Ramblings and Food!

It’s that time of the week again! Linking up with CatholicMom.com to count my blessings, accomplishments, and feeble attempts at success this past week.

*****

Well, I have done a pretty good job of sticking to my meal plan for the week. We roasted a chicken one night and pot roast another.  I made chicken salad, BBQ pulled pork sandwiches, and chicken fajitas. We are gearing up for gluten-free pizza night tomorrow night (the kids deemed Fridays pizza night), so that doesn’t require much brain power on my part.

It seems we have fallen into a decent gluten-free routine around here, and I have figured out what to serve my picky eaters. It helps so much to have a plan or else I repeatedly throw gluten-free chicken strips and hamburgers at the kids!

In an attempt to keep after school time from becoming one huge yelling match, I have tried to have a yummy treat baked for the kids. Gluten-free rice crispy treats, gluten-free chocolate chip cookies, you get the picture. It makes homework time a little more bearable. I have been a Mom far too long to pretend I give them carrot sticks and apple slices. If a cookie makes them stop fighting, a cookie it is!

IMG_8150

*****

Speaking of food, I am 20 weeks pregnant tomorrow. The baby is the length of a banana! “Baby banana” is kicking harder and harder. My husband fell asleep with his hand on my tummy last night, and the baby kicked hard in protest. I let him sleep, but I was so excited I had a hard time getting sleepy!

IMG_8167

*****

Thanks to big babies Heath and Brooks jumping in bed with us last night, my sleep was restless. Brooks took an early nap, so I prayed a rosary in peace. Well, kind of in peace—Heath crawled into my lap and held the “balls” of my rosary with me. He kept asking, “What is this ball? Basketball? Baseball? Soccer ball?”on each rosary bead.

I bet Mother Mary got a good laugh out of that! 🙂

Several thoughts rambled through my brain as I prayed the Luminous Mysteries:

1st Mystery – Baptism in the Jordan River (Mark 1:9)

I love thinking of the Spirit descending upon Jesus after His baptism. It reminds me that each of us received the Holy Spirit in our baptism. Not because we deserve it, just because our parents brought us (or in my case I brought myself as an adult) to receive the grace of baptism.

2nd Mystery – Miracle at the Wedding of Cana (John 2:1)

Oh, I love this one! As a convert to the Catholic faith, all the Mary stuff was challenging to learn about. This scripture, where Mary tells the wedding staff to ““Do whatever he tells you,” made me understand! Mary brings us to Jesus, reminding us to do His will. It’s no more complicated than that! Knowing Mary means knowing  and following Jesus.

3rd Mystery – Proclamation of the Kingdom and Call to Repentance (Mark 1:14-15)

Ouch. Lent is approaching, and I look forward to repenting and setting my life back on track again. I had a certain private issue to work on in myself last Lent, but I have fallen back to old ways. God’s grace has made it better, but I know I must ask for God’s help again. Little by little, I know God will change me—for good.

4th Mystery – Transfiguration (Mark 9:2-3)

This scripture fascinates me. I like to envision how freaked out Peter, James, and John must’ve been seeing Jesus turn dazzling white. I would have been amazed yet terrified! Any time I am scared, I try to remember God’s voice after the Transfiguration—“This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” No matter the situation, no matter how scary or painful, all I need to do is listen to Jesus. It will be OK.

5th Mystery – Institution of the Eucharist (Mark 14:22-24)

The Eucharist is why I converted! I cannot imagine making it through my crazy, chaotic, loud, messy week without attending mass at least once. I love seeing the entire congregation lining up to receive Jesus. All of us together, have a moment of peace. True peace that only Jesus can give.

****

Since it’s lunch time, I should probably feed my little ones. Once again, it’s all about the food! Have a blessed week, and check out other bloggers’ big and small successes this week at Catholicmom.com!

Happy Feast of St. Blaise!

P1100344

 

St. Blaise has a special place in my heart. We named our fourth child after him!

Like many of the early saints, it is hard to distinguish facts from legends about St. Blaise. What we do know is that St. Blaise was a bishop in Armenia who became a hermit to avoid Christian persecution.

The story goes that hunters found him in a cave, praying, surrounded by wild animals that he had befriended. As the hunters captured St. Blaise to imprison him, a mother happened by. Her young son was choking on a fish bone. St. Blaise miraculously saved the young boy’s life.

After he was martyred for the faith in 316, a strong devotion to him grew. Because he had dislodged the fish bone from the child’s throat, St. Blaise became known as the patron saint for throat ailments.

We named our little Blaise after St. Blaise as a prayer, asking St. Blaise to pray for our children’s terribly painful silent reflux. Like his older sisters and brother, Blaise began having pain from stomach acid backing up into his esophagus. Antacids and proton pump inhibitors did little to ease the pain.

I believe St. Blaise’s prayers opened our eyes to holistic doctors and chiropractors that healed Blaise and his siblings. We discovered food allergies were causing the reflux in the first place. Chiropractic adjustments kept their bodies in alignment, preventing reflux. Genetic SNP’s affecting B12 and folic acid absorption make our children very prone to food allergies and reflux. The medicines that lower stomach acid make the reflux worse because they lower B12, further exascerbating the cycle! Large doses of probiotics restored Blaise’s healthy gut flora, keeping the reflux away as well. You can read more about our little Blaise’s journey to health here.

If you are able to go to mass today, you will most likely receive a blessing of your throat similar to this:

Through the intercession of St. Blaise, bishop and martyr, may God deliver you from ailments of the throat and from every other evil. In the Name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit (Blessing of St. Blaise).

Time and time again, I am amazed and humbled at the connection we have with Christians in Heaven. Never underestimate the power of prayer, whether by you, Christians on earth, or saints in Heaven.