See Yourself Through The Eyes of Love

Sunday morning I bundled up the kids & headed to Mass solo while my husband worked his 8th day in a row. I asked my oldest to help me wrangle the littles & prayed that things would go smoothly. Mass has been an exercise in humility lately trying to keep my 18 month old boy from bouncing out of the pews & not having my husband there as usual meant I was on my own this time.

I spent much of my time the previous week wrangling him & worried it’d be more of the same as we helped out with kid’s church during the homily. By God’s grace my teen was helpful & the little ones were (mostly) angelic. The Children’s group is held in our parish library & since the narthex is decorated for Advent at the moment, with a grand, sparkling “giving tree” presiding over tons of donated gifts & a beautiful nativity scene, some of the usual decor was stored there including my 3 year old’s favorite statue of a smiling Madonna & Child. As soon as she noticed it was there she gasped in girlish wonder saying “Aww Look Mommy, it’s Mawwy & Baby Jeeesus!”, to which I replied “Yes it is!” Then she pointed to Mama Mary, one arm outstretched in welcome, the other holding her divine son & said, “Look Mommy, it’s YOU!”

It’s something she’s said before. In fact every time she walks by this friendly depiction she says so. The first time was when I had excused myself from adoration to let my toddler get some of his squirmy energy out & my first reaction to her sweet comparison was to say “Well, I don’t know about THAT!” I felt less than reverent & holy as I both continued the rosary I’d started in the chapel & followed him around in quick circles.

The second time she said it we were sat on some armchairs waiting for Mass to begin. I was bouncing her brother on my knee, holding out until the last moment to enter the quiet sanctuary. I’d spent that morning rushed & desperate for coffee but this time, as not to discourage her tender heart, I took her hand & told her, “That’s so nice of you to say!” Though inwardly I groaned.

I knew I had to check this bristling of my heart. Why was I reacting to my precious daughter’s sweet exclamation with exasperation? It wasn’t because I resented the comparison but because I know that I fall short of the goodness she sees. I know I’m not the perfect Mom I’d like to be. The one she thinks I am. I know I’m flawed beyond measure, in no way resembling Our Lady in all of her spotless glory (I even wrote a blog post about it!) But when I brought this to Jesus in prayer he whispered to my soul, “You’re closer than you think.”

So when she said it again on Sunday I didn’t sigh or roll my eyes. I knelt down to pull her close so she could hear me over the joyful noise of our little group. I whispered a simple “Thank you.” into her ear before she giggled & skipped back to her coloring page. I looked up at the icon, into the eyes of Mother & Son, & smiled back at them.

Yeah, I could have attributed my dear girl’s comparison to the statue’s brown hair or the fact that Mary always had her baby in her arms but the persistence of my sassy princess (even after many corrections) made me wonder if there was more to it. I believe it was God’s way of reminding me of what he sees in me. Of encouraging me in my vocation through the heart of my precious child. Even though I’m not a perfect mother, I am the perfect one for them & my messy heart is the perfect place for God to perfect his work in me.

❤ Cait

Mystical Rose, My Missing Puzzle Piece

The first time I remember praying the rosary as an adult was for a silly, vain intention. My wedding was approaching & I had my heart set on a beautiful, sunny day. My mother has always been close to the Blessed Virgin Mary & had given me a little fold-up card with the prayers and mysteries on it. She told me to pray with an intention and make it something big. That way, if God saw fit to deliver, I would know that my prayers were aided by the devotion.

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At-Home Teeth Whitening: Getting My Smile Back With Smile Brilliant! (Review & Giveaway!)

*GIVEAWAY CLOSED*

If you follow me on Instagram, you know that my love for coffee is well documented. Keeping up with my family of five requires a little pep in my step & I love nothing more than to start my day with a cup (or two!) & get moving.

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A True 180°

This morning I walked out onto the back porch & faced the sun beams streaming through the trees. I quieted my heart, asking God what the day might hold. I breathed in the summer air, not yet touched by the humidity promised in the lingering haze. I stretched & smiled because I know each morning, each day is another chance.

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I Never Meant to be a Catholic Blogger, or Even a Catholic & Why I’m Staying Both

2018 was a purely experimental year for this blog and for my writing but, I knew that I wanted to share relatable and encouraging stories inspired by my life. It goes without saying that my spirituality encompasses and is at the heart of every experience I have and everything that I do. The love of God and the many forms that it takes in my life is always my inspiration. I knew that this truth would come through some in the creative storytelling style of my writing. Maybe in undertones. Maybe even overtones. What I didn’t plan on exactly was God taking over completely.
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If you knew me ten or even five years ago, you may be surprised to see my zeal for God and the Church. Back then I wouldn’t have believed you if you told me that I would be a holy water keeping, blessed candle lighting, novena saying, rosary wielding, joyful Catholic.
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Love Nudge For Couples App: 5 Love Languages Review & Giveaway!

PSA: Valentine’s Day is almost here! While it’s true that you don’t need an occasion to show to show you care celebrating Valentine’s Day is a good excuse for a romantic gesture. You may be making plans to help your sweetie feel extra special but, how can you be sure that you’re showing affection in the way that means the most to your mate?

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Five Winter Family Favorites!

Despite my last name I didn’t always love the winter (I married in! Haha!). Once the holiday activities are over the winter in New England can seem too long, dark and boring. Everyone loved the Five Fall Family Favorites! post so I  wanted to do a winter edition and share a some local activities and fun things our family does during the colder months to ward off the cabin fever!

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Advent Reflection

We had the first snow of the season here a couple of weeks ago and this year I am determined to change my perspective on the cold and darker months. It really was a lovely snowfall.

My family baked, snuggled and went to bed early. I laid in the dark wrapped in my blanket, basking in the incredible silence that accompanies the flurries. I listened to the flakes piling up and the sound of a plow scraping down the street. The next day I decided to make my Advent wreath and cheerfully clipped and gathered the beautiful things that grow and dwell alongside us in our little woods.

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Yarn Feather Ornament Craft

Looking for a fun craft project for kids to do that will actually make a nice gift? This Feather Ornament á la Mama Bear’s Craft Room. is a fun and easy craft for your tree or a handmade and personalized gift for your loved ones if your on a shoestring (or yarn!) budget.

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St. Joseph and the Blended Family

I was managing a small chiropractic office and the doctor I worked for was talented and nice but also eccentric and quite a talker! The only two employees in the small home based practice, we chatted all day between patients. With his kids running in and out, family was a common topic of conversation. At the time I was expecting my second daughter, the first child that my husband and I would share biologically.

One day during a lull while discussing my growing brood the doc asked, “So, how does your husband feel about the new baby on the way?” I smiled and responded that naturally, we’re both excited and a little nervous. “Our oldest is in 3rd grade already,” I said. “It’s like we’re starting over!” He laughed in sympathy, then said “This will be a whole new adventure for him though since this is his first child.”

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