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Saturday, December 16, 2017

Family Prayer Time, a Book Review, and a Giveaway!

**This post contains affiliate links – meaning if you purchase this book through the link provided, I may earn a commission from Amazon, at no additional cost to you.**

What does family prayer in your house look like? 

At our place it is kind of broken up through out the day. We try to give our mornings to Jesus with a simple prayer upon waking, then continue with prayer at meal times, usually have a more formal time of family prayer in our living room next to our family prayer space (this is the time we attempt our family rosary or any novenas we are saying), and lastly good night prayers and holy songs while being tucked in.

Do you have a special prayer space set aside? 

Ours is strewn around in the family room with the library close by. On an old desk we have angels, a crucifix hanging on the wall, and an image of the Sacred & Immaculate hearts. On another wall we have a large relief sculpture of Mary and Jesus under which all our rosaries hang. I love looking around our home and always being reminded to lift my heart to God when I gaze upon sacred images.

A Book Review: The Catholic Family Book of Prayers. 

*I was given a free copy of the book to review in exchange for my honest opinion.

The Catholic Family Book of Prayers is a Peanut Butter & Grace book published by Gracewatch Media and you can easily pick up a copy for your family on Amazon. 

This is a beautiful prayer book that our family is thrilled to add to our collection. It is packed full of lovely prayers and oragnized so neatly, and the perfect companion for a busy family. I love how the prayers are grouped together and the section on prayers to Our Blessed Mother is so lovely.
Every family should have a copy of this book of prayers! I reviewed the paperback edition and while it is very well made and of nice quality, I feel like getting the hardback book becuase I am envisioning daily use! I am drooling over the special handbound book edition available through the Gracewatch Media website!!!

Check out these other great reviews of The Catholic Family Book of Prayers from:

A Beautiful Camoflaged Mess of a Life

Life in Every Limb

A Giveaway: Family Prayer Space Collection & Catholic Prayers Printable 

This giveaway starts on Dec 16th and ends Dec 25th Christmas morning. Open to USA residents only for the prayer space collection but open to anyone wishing to enter to win a PDF copy of the Catholic Prayers printable. Prize #1: Beautiful ivory table cover embroidered with angels, vintage crucifix restored and detailed,
two devotional candles with the Immaculate & Sacred Heart images, one handpainted holy water bottle, one beautiful round image of Our Lady & Baby Jesus, one 4x6 framed water color print, and one copy of The Catholic Family Book of Prayers. Prize#: 2 PDF copy of Catholic Prayers printable from SaongJai Prize #3:  PDF copy of Catholic Prayers printable from SaongJai Prize #4: PDF copy of Catholic Prayers printable from SaongJai. Enter through the rafflecopter.

**The winner is Stefanie** please check your email! 

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Monday, December 11, 2017

Three Tips on Writing a Letter To Baby Jesus {Free Template}

This year we wrote letters to Baby Jesus on the Eve of St. Nicholas Day. Even though that day has passed, any time during Advent is a great time to write a letter to Baby Jesus and ask for the intercession of St. Nicholas.  Here are three helpful tips:

1. Praise. For a little kid this may be: Good Baby Jesus you are so awesome!  

2. Petition. Tell Jesus about the things in life you love/desire and also the prayers you have for others.

3. Thank. Thank Jesus for his goodness and for listing to the things on your heart. 

Of course your letter doesn't have to look like that but it's a great formula  for prayer to cultivate in little ones.

Here is the free template you can print out.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

What Advent Traditions Will You and Yours Embrace?

This is a busy time of year! There is a lot going on.  So what are the things your family loves to do to help keep the focus on "you know who"? The who that this season is all based around, Jesus our king, the one we patiently anticipate!

I am jumping ahead here with and text above becuase it's fitting for today, the Feast of Christ the King. Jesus should be the joy of all our hearts and I pray this advent we can all focus on the coming of Christ our King.

Here are a few ways my family likes to prepare in Advent and they may also help you celebrate.

1. Make prayer a priority this Advent. You can do simple daily prayer and a great way to do that is with the St. Andrew Novena starting on Nov 30th and ending at Christmas. Also saying prayers when you light your advent candle or praying the O Antiphons the week leading up to Christmas.

2. Decorate and set up an Advent wreath with candles. Now is a great time to decorate but maybe instead of getting all the Christmas things out, you could bring out the greenery and use purples and pinks for Advent.

3. Find little ways to keep your focus on Jesus with caring for others. There are many ways your family can serve others this season. Check out this cute Advent Angel printable I have that is a little game to play to pass the time away
‘till baby Jesus comes to you. 

4. Celebrate the saints during Advent. A great way to focus on Jesus is getting to know the friends who loved him so!

5. Who doesn't love some Christmas music? Well, there are quite a few seasonal songs that focus on anticipating Christ's arrival instead of jumping the gun and celebrating it, like O Come Oh come Emmanuel. I have an Advent playlist going on Amazon Prime and with prime you get to listen to loads of free music. Well one list is just a bunch of different versions of O Come O Come Emmanuel!!!

Some resources for you:
My Annual FREE Advent Calendar
St. Andrew Christmas Novena Printable

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Advent is Short This Year Folks! {FREE Advent Calendar and a Giveaway too}

For the past few years I have put out a free Advent Calendar and this year is no exception. I love offering this to all of you and I pray it helps to plan a meaningful Advent for your little ones. We have a short season this year, the 4th Sunday of Advent is Christmas Eve!!

What are some special things you love to do during this season? Over here we are big on St. Nicholas day, lighting our Advent candles, and praying the O Antiphons. I have a super cute Advent Activity Pack available that includes the FREE calendar plus coloring pages, holy cards, O Antiphon ornaments, and more. You can find the Activity Pack in my Etsy shop, over at Peter's Square, or Catholic Mommy Blogs .

For a Very limited time you can even get my Advent Activity Pack as part of the Catholic Mom Bundle (available the week of  Nov 19-26th) that includes many other awesome resources relevant to mothers and the Advent season! (Affiliate link. I could get a commission if you buy through the Catholic Mom Bundle link )

The giveaway starts November 19th, ends November 26th and is open to anyone. So, I am giving away 3 items. #1: prize bundle of Advent Activity Pack PDF, a cool large purple kids Rosary, and Abigail the Angel PDF (a cute little angel you can print and cut out to hide all over with little prompts for doing good deeds) #2: Advent Activity Pack PDF and the last prize #3: Abigail the Angel PDF.

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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

FREE St. Luke Coloring Page

What are you doing to celebrate St. Luke today? We ventured out and tried a new to us craft in honor of the patron of artists. We colored on fabric with crayons and then heat sealed the picture in!

Here is a cute color by number image of St. Luke for your little ones to color in. Enjoy!

Saturday, September 23, 2017

A FREE Cute St. Padre Pio Coloring Page

Here is a super cute free coloring page for St. Padre Pio, one of my all time favorite saints.  I usually say a quick little prayer asking his intercession while I am in line for confession and I often ask especially for the grace to see & confess the error of my ways.

What is something you love about this great saint?

Don't forget you can find all my free coloring pages listed here

Sunday, September 10, 2017

7 No Sew All Saints Costume Tips: You Don't Have to Be a Seamstress to Make Awesome Costumes

We love All Saints Day and happily anticipate the costume creating around here. You might think it is a wee bit early to start thinking about All Hallows Eve but really it is just a little more than a couple months away! I have sewn some costumes in the past but most often I don't have time to sew a complete outfit and my guess is that average busy moms don't either.

Plan ahead by choosing the saints and study them. You can study their lives learning about the period they lived and some of their virtues and qualities. This will be helpful when it comes time to put together a costume and enrich little ones faith. Here are seven tips that I think super helpful which don't require you to be a seamstress!

1. Visit yard and rummage sales now! Even though summer is over people are still having sales in nice weather and is the perfect opportunity to find great deals.

 2. Head to the dollar or thrift store for accessories like glasses, hats & jewelry.

3. Think 70's & 80's there are many antique fashions revived in those decades and you can find some costumes that require only some slight alteration for height and width!

Here is a great example. We found this awesome vintage dress at our parish rummage sale undoubtedly from the 70's with lace all over it. The perfect St. Zelie costume and all I had to do was bunch up the sides and safety pin it: instant alteration plus bonus faux bustle. 

4. Handy instant alteration tools: safety pins, stitch witchery, and a glue gun. Most one day use costumes won't require you to dig out a sewing machine! You can add trim with a glue gun and quickly take in an outfit with safety pins or hem a garment with a fuse tape like stich witchery.

5. Repurpose old store bought costumes or even nightgowns (like the Disney princess kind) many female saints were royalty. For boys think about how to tweak pirate, king, star wars, or knight costumes.

6. Shop Etsy and Amazon for ready made costumes!

7. Forget about trying to sew and attach hot facial hair. You can use your makeup as face paint and a little coconut oil rubbed in followed with soap to take it off at the end of the day. Eye liner in black or brown can help to make great beards/ moustaches and lightly applied you can draw on wrinkles cause some saints were old people!

I pray you have fun planning your costumes and that this post may be of help.

If you plan a party check out the links below for great ideas and also explore the awesome All Saint printables that will make planning a breeze!
Shower of Roses -
Training Happy Hearts-
A Slice of Smith Life-
Pinot Noir and Prayers -
Sweeping up Joy -
The Kennedy Adventures -
Under Thy Roof -

                                                             All Saints Bingo Game

Cute All Saints Party Printables

Friday, August 4, 2017

Used Curriculum Sale {and a giveaway too}

There is a great curriculum sale hop going on over at Shower of Roses that we hopped on too! Thanks for stopping by this sale! Shipping(USA only) rates are as follows and all items will be shipped via media mail:  1-3 items for $5 and 4+ items for $7.  I will reply in the comments as quickly as I can and mark things as sold in the original post.  Please comment with the items you want and I will email you a total and invoice you through PayPal. I will be adding more this week as I go through things so check back. You can enter the giveaway through the raffle copter widget at the end of this post.

Check out the rest of the sale over at Shower of Roses.

Wonder of Science:$6   Wonder of Science2:$6   Everything You Need to Know About Science Homework: $3 Art Fun: $5 Craft History Activity Book: $5 Selling Spelling to Kids: $3 Spelling Grade6: $2

Golden Song Book(Hard Back) 56 songs: $7  Sing an Old Song( Paper back) 10 beautiful Traditional Catholic hymns in calligraphy: $4 (I have 5 copies available)  

Behold & See: $15  Science 2: $12

Catholic Preschool Printables (Digital Download PDF): $12
Catholic Preschool Printables Cursive(Digital Download PDF): $12
Cute Saint Awards (Digital Download PDF) $5

And now for the Giveaway! 5 winners will be selected to receive 3 PDF printables: Catholic Preschool Printables, Large Cute Saint ABC Flash Cards, and a set of Cute Saint Awards. the giveaway is open to anyone and runs 8/5/17-8/13/17.

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Tuesday, June 6, 2017

A Free Cute Sacred Heart of Jesus Coloring Page for Your Little Ones

One of my favorite Sacred Heart prayers is a line from a St. Jude Novena:

"May the Sacred Heart of Jesus be adored, glorified, loved, and preserved through out the world now and forever. "

When I was younger my grandmother was diagnosed with cancer and we prayed the St. Jude novena together as a family kneeling on the steps in our living room. I remember my dad so fervently leading us all in this novena for his beloved mother, my Nanny. To this day it is one of my go to prayers...sometimes I even find myself saying that line just because.

Need more info on novenas or just an easy reminder to help stay on track while praying? Check out Pray More Novenas

The month of June is dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. So here is a cute free coloring page for your little ones and a list of great resource links for celebrating!

Shower Of Roses - Sacred Heart of Jesus

A Slice of Smith Life - Ways to Celebrate the Month of the Sacred Heart

The Kennedy Adventures - Catholic Saints Books for June

You can find a collection of all the FREE coloring pages here

Monday, May 1, 2017

Come Pray and Play: Our Lady of Fatima and the Joyful Mysteries Printable VBS} And a Giveaway too!

It is complete! I have spent a heap of hours on this huge printable VBS program. It is 20 pages longer that last's year's Way of Mercy VBS.

Come Pray & Play VBS program is built around the call to pray from Our Lady of Fatima and the Joyful Mysteries of the Rosary. I want to show our children how to pray and live a joyful life.
The Joyful Mysteries are a great way to reflect on the cause of our joy, Jesus! The goal is encourage a prayer life and the saints we chose are ones that loved to pray. Apparitions/Devotions highlighted are: OL Fatima, OL Mt Carmel, OL Kibeho, Sacred Heart of Jesus, and Immaculate Heart of Mary. Saints highlighted are: St. Pope JPII, St. Therese of Lisieux, St. Padre Pio, St. Gianna Molla, and St. Maximilian Kolbe.

This printable PDF download is a resource guide of 59 pages including a general outline, resource suggestions, name tags, posters, certificate, coloring pages, and crafts.


Even if you aren't planning a VBS, this printable would be a great summer activity resource.


I have created a facebook support group for this VBS program called Come Pray & Play VBS that anyone can join to share ideas and ask me questions. I am posting a special $5 OFF coupon in there good thru 5/13/2017.

There are two shopping options for this awesome printable. You can buy it on Etsy or over at Peter's Square.

I am super excited about the anniversary of the apparitions at Fatima and love celebrating special occasions with my children. Here are some links to Fatima posts from blogs I love that may help you celebrate too:

Now for the Giveaway that is open to anyone starting 5/2/20/17 and ending 5/9/2017 {I will be selecting 5 winners to receive a copy of Come Play and Pray PDF program and 1 winner to receive a prayer bag from Give Him 5 and Come Play and Pray PDF}

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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Hurry the Catholic Preschool Printables are on Sale for One Week Only at Peter's Square!
Have you all heard about Peter's Square? Regina Magazine just ran this article " The New Catholic Etsy" by Chiara Finaldi! Peter's Square is like a Catholic Etsy of sorts, an online market place for Catholic sellers. I love it because you can feel great about your purchase for 2 awesome reasons.

1. You are supporting hard working Catholic families or individuals that share your values.

2. Your purchase supports great causes because the sellers donate a portion of their proceeds to charities.

I have a shop there and am having a sale of my Catholic Preschool Printables for one week only! You get over 80 pages of letter, number, and shape practice plus coloring pages for just $12 regularly on SALE for a limited time for $8

The best part about this resource is that you can use it for all the preschoolers you will ever have because there are no restrictions to your home use of the product!

If you would like to sneak a peak at it a while back I wrote a post here which includes a short video and some great suggestions for using the printables!

Sunday, April 23, 2017

There is Still Time for You to Plan a Simple Divine Mercy Tea & FREE Coloring Page

Divine Mercy Tea
We had a simple Divine Mercy Tea this morning. I told the girls if they got up early enough they could have a tea with breakfast before Mass. We sang the Divine Mercy as they colored in a cute image of Jesus I Trust in You that you can find here.
FREE Divine Mercy Coloring Page

So Simple You Can Put it Together in a Few Minutes

It wasn't very difficult to put together either. All I did was print out the coloring page, set out some colored pencils and made the tea.
Waiting for their Divine Mercy coloring pages to print out.

Then we sang and BAM there is your Simple Divine Mercy Tea. Celebrating with your children doesn't have to be elaborate if you don't want it to be.

Most of the time I don't have the energy or time to pull something amazing together. Do you know what though? My kids don't care! A simple spot of tea or some other treat and coloring pages, easy craft, or read aloud story and they are thrilled. Oh and babies make every celebration even more special.

...babies make every celebration even more special...

Occasionally, I like to peruse Pin boards and all my favorite Catholic blogs for fantastic ideas to celebrate and I do that for some of the bigger feast days or special family devotions. Check out some of my favorite blogs below.

Here are Some Super Fantastic Blogs I love to Get Ideas from for Celebrating with Kids

How do you like to celebrate with your children? Please share, I love trying out new ideas!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

5 Great Tips to Foster Vocations in Your Girls} the Molly McBride Book Series & a Rosary Giveaway

Giving your life in service to God as a religious is something that was a lot more common in days gone by for young women. Maybe that is because children used to be exposed to religious in daily life more than they are now. Kids want to grow up to be people they know & admire. Every parish has a priest that little boys can look up to but not every parish has nuns or sisters! How can you foster vocations in your girls if you don't know any religious or have them near you? In a bit I am going to share with you some tips I think are helpful for this! At the bottom of this post you can read about the awesome kids rosary I am giving away.
Sisters of Mary of Kakamega
I have always wanted my girls to be open to the idea of a religious vocation should God call them to that. We are blessed that there are the Sisters of Mary of Kakamega in the town where my in-laws live and we get to see them when we visit. They wear a grey habit with a white veil but on Sunday they wear all white! The other day when we were out shopping we saw a couple of them at Walmart of all places...people must have thought I was nuts as I started waving at and shouted out "sisters". I didn't want to miss out saying hello to them.

 5 Great Tips to Foster Vocations in Your Girls

1. Pray as a family and encourage your daughter to spend time in prayer alone...prayer journaling or spiritual reading. This is the most important tip because without a prayer life, God has to speak to you in more complicated less direct ways. When one's heart is in communion with God through prayer it's easy for Him to speak to you. The nudging of the Holy Spirit to pursue a certain vocation (be it married, religious, or the single life) will be more clear.

2. Read to your girls about the lives of religious saints.

3. Visit religious communities. If you don't have nuns or sisters at your parish you can plan a road trip to visit a religious community. You could even browse the internet and see if other parishes close by may have some religious teaching at a school our helping in the community. You can start your search here at the online Directory of Women's Religious Communities.

4. Check out the Molly McBride series of children's books and get them for your girls.
Molly McBride and the Purple Habit 
In the first Molly McBride book, Molly stubbornly refused to part with the purple nun’s habit her mother made for her—not even for her sister’s First Communion. “The idea for the book was inspired by a portrait I painted of one of my daughters dressed up in her purple habit!” says author-illustrator Jean Schoonover-Egolf. “Molly is a mix of both our daughters, and their relationship with the real Children of Mary sisters here in Central Ohio is similar to Molly McBride’s."
Molly McBride and the Plaid Jumper

In the second book, Molly faces all the typical anxieties of starting school: making new friends; being away from her beloved wolf-pet, Francis, for the first time; and wearing that plaid jumper. But she overcomes those hurdles with the help of a new friend (a precious five-year old boy named Dominic who doesn’t want to give up his priest clothes!) and Father Matt, the pastor at her new school.

The moral of the story? Uniforms are important markers of our identity, but they’re not as important as our relationship with Jesus. (Watch for Jesus introducing his stuffed-animal lamb to Molly’s stuffed-animal wolf-pet in the new book!)

In addition to any lessons kids might take away from the book, Jean Schoonover-Egolf hopes the series promotes greater awareness of vocations.

5. Watch some you tube videos about the work & prayer life of religious. There are some great ones out there and I will list a couple for you that we love:
Passionsist nuns of Erlanger, Kentucky show how the bread that is used in Communion is made
Benedictine Nuns of Virginia Dale, Colorado run a 300 acre ranch

Purple Kids Rosary Giveaway
The Giveaway for a large ruberized purple kids rosary from SaongJai is open to anyone and you can enter it through the raffle copter widget below. It will end Divine Mercy Sunday April 22, 2017

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