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"An error in the beginning is an error indeed." - St. Thomas Aquinas
"Sorrow can be alleviated by good sleep, a bath and a glass of wine." - St. Thomas Aquinas


Project Ultrasound


***10 Week Challenge Update: Week 1 9/12-9/16 10.75

Whaddya Say?

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

One Hot Date!

Thank you! Thank you! to a dear friend who recommended this movie to me. I went on a date with my hubby tonight and watched it. Phenomenal! Great movie, great message. I highly recommend this movie to all who believe in the sanctity of Marriage!




Home School Humor

Me: "In this division problem you are going to have a remainder."

My son: "When Chuck Norris divides there are no remainders."

Ugh.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Beautiful Prayer

Stay with me, Lord, for it is necessary to have You present so that I do not forget You. You know how easily I abandon You.

Stay with me, Lord, because I am weak and I need Your strength, that I may not fall so often.

Stay with me, Lord, for You are my life and without You I am without fervor.

Stay with me, Lord, for You are my light and without You I am in darkness.

Stay with me, Lord, to show me Your will.

Stay with me, Lord, so that I hear Your voice and follow You.

Stay with me, Lord, for I desire to love You very much and alway be in Your company.

Stay with me, Lord, if You wish me to be faithful to You.

Stay with me, Lord, as poor as my soul is I want it to be a place of consolation for You, a nest of Love.

Stay with me, Jesus, for it is getting late and the day is coming to a close and life passes, death, judgment and eternity approaches. It is necessary to renew my strength, so that I will not stop along the way and for that, I need You. It is getting late and death approaches, I fear the darkness, the temptations, the dryness, the cross, the sorrows. O how I need You, my Jesus, in this night of exile!

Stay with me tonight, Jesus, in life with all its dangers, I need You.

Let me recognize You as Your disciples did at the breaking of the bread, so that the Eucharistic Communion be the Light which disperses the darkness, the force which sustains me, the unique joy of my heart.

Stay with me, Lord, because at the hour of my death, I want to remain united to You, if not by Communion, at least by grace and love.

Stay with me, Lord, for it is You alone I look for, Your Love, Your Grace, Your Will, Your Heart, Your Spirit, because I love You and ask no other reward but to love You more and more.

With a firm love, I will love You with all my heart while on earth and continue to love You perfectly during all eternity. Amen.

H/T: Faith and Country

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Do Not Be Afraid

As a Catholic I am deeply saddened, horrified and angered at the desecration videos that are being posted on YouTube right now. Please take a moment to visit the site below and ask YouTube to remove the videos immediately. This is not just a Catholic issue. If evil such as this is allowed to perpetuate it won't be long until other Christian faiths are being mocked and desecrated. All Christians should stand up and demand the removal of these videos. It is absolutely appalling! Do Not Be Afraid to stand up for Christianity!

Click here to sign the petition.



H/T: Are We There Yet

The Survey Says...?

Did you watch the Presidential debate on Friday night?

After watching, listening to the talking heads on CNN, MSNBC and FoxNews, I am not surprised that there is no clear "winner" of this debate. Both candidates showed their strengths and weaknesses.

What I found interesting was Barack Obama either agreed with or conceded that McCain was right at least 6 times during the debate.

What I found funny was McCain's comment in response to Obama talking about attacking Pakistan. "You don't say that out loud!". I laughed pretty heartily at that one.

At times it looked like McCain was schooling a new student to government. Obama forgot his bracelet and the name of the soldier on it. Oops. McCain couldn't pronounce Ahmadinejad.

Over all, I found it to be interesting to see the two together. I liked McCain's passion, I found Obama to be confident but lacking substance. I am eagerly looking forward to the VP debate, that could be the deciding factor in this race. I hope it's got more fire than this one had.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Now That's Usin' Your Noggin!

A good friend over A Book A Day has a brilliant post today on Mathematics. Check it out when you get a chance.

Friday, September 26, 2008

No Win Situation

What is going on!? We have one candidate suspending his campaign to do his real job, another deciding his "job" is to debate and continue stumping. No deals have been reached on the economic crisis. The WWW is slinging rocks at both sides. The polls are crazy..up and down up and down. He's in the lead, no..wait a minute..the other guy is.

I can't fault John McCain for doing the job we are paying him to do. On the other hand, I understand that the debates are important. A lot of money has gone into preparing for them and they should go on.

What I don't understand is that Barack Obama doesn't want to do the job we are paying him to do. He wants to "talk" about doing it. The debates are important, no doubt about it, but we are not paying him to "talk" about it.

I don't know if McCain's presence on the Hill will make one iota of difference, what I do know is that he made doing his job a priority. In a crisis moment he stopped the stumping and went to work. This is the man's character. Folks on the net and the news say it could backfire on him, he could lose the election because of this. I don't think he cares. I think he cares that Americans are paying him to do a job and it's time to get off of the playground and get to work.

I have to agree with him on that.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Update on the Struggle

I must thank all those who are praying for my me and my mom as we struggle to quit smoking. She's doing great! Although the better she feels, the more the temptation to smoke hits her. Keep praying! 5 weeks and counting. I, on the other hand, am not having such an easy time of it. Yesterday I was bombarded with excuses.

a) I'll gain weight (that's a HUGE one, since I have recently shed 10 years of over indulgence)
b) My smoke breaks are MY time..my quiet, sit on the porch and enjoy creation time, my peace of mind time.
c) It's too hard!

Then, at Adoration last night, I asked Our Lord, how do You see me..I'm not sure I really wanted to know that. Then comes the answer to my excuses this morning.

a) Don't be a glutton! Exercise.
b) Turn your selfish desires for "your" quiet time into My time
c) Nothing is impossible with Me, ask for help.

So. I'm running out of excuses and smokes. The day is fast approaching. Keep praying! Ol' Screwtape is a nasty fellow, who likes to visit me disguised as a cigarette.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Guest Blogger

Testosterhome has a great post about helping our neighbors. She's my Guest Blogger of the day:

Loving Jesus, Serving Others

Weekly column
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to provide meals for two couples in our neighborhood. One meal was for a young couple who recently had their first baby, the other was for a large family whose father was having some health concerns. As the schedules worked out, I provided both meals a few days apart.

I am amazed at the ease some families can provide meals for others – and I’ve been on the receiving end of that love so many times. I have friends who can easily whip up a delicious dinner or casserole, sometimes in a day’s notice. These friends tell me it’s not like work for them, that it’s no big deal – I am in awe.

I’m not one of those women.

I think I’ve mentioned here before that cooking is a challenge for me. It’s not that I burn food or give my family salmonella – it just takes great effort to decide what foods to cook, and then (when that overwhelming task is complete) to actually cook those foods.

You can imagine, then, when the occasion arises to cook for someone other than my own family, how the task takes on epic proportions. I fret over color and consistency, amount and taste. All in all, it’s a bit of a struggle, mostly just because it doesn’t come naturally.

For me, those two dates of cooking for those dear families – they loomed large on the calendar.

Of course I was more than happy to help these people I love so much – and they were so grateful for the meals we provided. It is always nice when our efforts are appreciated.

But the truth is I would have gladly served in another way. Cleaning a bathroom or doing a load of laundry – these are household tasks that are easy for me, things I don’t mind doing (and actually really enjoy). When I’m asked to serve in that capacity, service is easy and fun!

Some days we are called to be the hands and feet of Jesus and it is wonderful and stress-free.

But at that moment, these families did not need their clothes washed or their bathrooms wiped down – they needed a meal. And so, I cooked.

Sometimes, in the midst of serving others, we have to push ourselves. There are times when we have to go the extra mile. In order to help someone in need, we might be called to do things that do not come naturally.

To be a servant does not guarantee we will be operating in our strong suit, not always. There are times when the service needed feels like more than we can (easily) provide. Sometimes service feels a lot like work.

When we push ourselves, sometimes it hurts—because helping out a neighbor or friend in the way they need is not always what we would choose, or how we might feel we could serve the best.

“I have found the paradox,” said Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, “that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.”

Some days, we are simply called to obey, to be Jesus to those around us through providing the service that is needed, not just the service that we want to give.

One of the best parts about service – besides helping someone in need – is that it really does something for us as well. Of course we don’t serve just to get something in return, but in the midst of serving others, there can be grace and there can be growth.

When we are willing to push ourselves past our comfort zone, Jesus can use that to help us be a better servant, and through that, to love him even more.

Boy Scouts of America Lend a Hand

The Boy Scouts of America have created a Disaster relief fund to help other scouts and their families in the midst of recovery from the recent hurricanes.

Were you aware that Boy Scout Alumni include:
63% of Air Force Academy graduates
68% of West Point graduates
70% of Annapolis graduates
72% of Rhodes Scholars
85% of FBI agents
65% of college graduates
65% of US Congress
85% of airline pilots
85% of student council presidents
89% of senior class presidents
71% of football captains
65% of basketball captains
88% of school newspaper editors
77% of editors of school annuals
75% of business managers of school publications
80% of junior class presidents

26 of the first 29 astronauts were Boy Scouts. 11 of the 12 who walked on the moon were Scouts. 108 of 172 astronauts were Boy Scouts. Over half of the 108 Scout Astronauts attained Star, Life or Eagle ranks.

Support your local Boy Scouts..they are the future leaders of America.
BSA Disaster Relief Fund

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fried Nerves for breakfast!

My seventh grader has been frantically roaming the house this morning. Every step accompanied by a deep sigh of frustration. When he speaks, his voice is tinged with pent up anger. It's at least a pitch higher than normal and the volume has been turned up to max. He's got my nerves on edge.

When I asked him what's wrong, he replied, in a high pitched whine, "I just don't want to work today!"

I must concur. Neither do I.

Off to the library we go!

Monday, September 22, 2008

The Struggle to Quit

I'm a smoker. I have smoked on and off for the last 18 years. I have stopped smoking in the past but have not managed to stay on that wagon. The longest period I have gone without smoking is one year. There have been times when it seemed easy to quit, then there are times when just thinking about it makes me want to light up.

There are so many studies out there on the health effects of smoking, some of them so long and tedious that I feel the need to take a smoke break while reading them.

My mother had quadruple by-pass surgery 5 weeks ago. She's been smoking for longer than I've been alive. Now, she's been smoke free for 5 weeks. Yet, she's still struggling to quit. Having quit a number of times, nicotine withdrawal usually only lasts a week or so. The habit takes a bit longer. Her question is this, why do I get cravings for a cigarette at the oddest times? She doesn't crave one with her coffee, or while on the phone or in the car. Those are the times she would light up regularly in the past. Talking about smoking doesn't make her want to take a puff. She finds it easy to say no during stressful moments. Yet, sometimes this dark horse sneaks up on her. When she's not expecting it. When there's no stress, or past "trigger" that would alert her to the impending urge. What happens to us, who smoke, to our bodies, so that years later we may still get that urge to "flic the bic"?

Have you quit or are you struggling to kick the habit? Have you been quit for years and still get the urge? Can you help us? The last time I jumped on the bandwagon it seemed simple enough. I always quit cold-turkey, no patch, no gum, no other crutch to get addicted to. In February of 2007, I said no and for one entire year I said no over and over again. Then in March of 2008 I fell off the wagon, for no particular reason. Just picked it up again. Easy-peasy.

So is it psychological? Physiological? Does our brain make connections when we light up that first one? I've heard that addicts of hard drugs, some quit for years, still have urges as well. What is it about plant based drugs that make them so difficult to quit? Or is it just ol' Screwtape helping us down the easy road to destroying the Temple of The Holy Spirit that we are? Keeping us weak in mind and Spirit.

I want to help my mom, I want to quit again myself, for good this time. Got any advice? Not the party line advice. Real, honest "I've been there where you are" or "I am where you are" advice. Maybe we can help each other.

Out of gas?

You drive up to the pump and it's empty. No gas. This is happening around the U.S. Where I live, the one station that has gas is limited to 10 gallons a transaction. So what do we do? Can Americans change their habits? I think we can. I see more and more folks riding bikes to work, walking to the grocery store with wagon and cooler in tow.

I saw an interview last night on a prominent cable news network. A reporter asking regular folks on the street, how do they handle the gas shortage and spike in prices? The answer was consolidate trips or buy a smaller car.

Matthew Modine, the actor, is encouraging bike riding. How long since you've been on a bike? I tried that the other day, whew..showed me just how out of shape I am. Wait a minute, this could be a good thing! Save money on gas and get in shape too! I may have to give it another try.

Would you be able to function without a car? What about your kids? It's fall now, there are football practices, cheerleading, Scouting and band practices to get to. How would not having gas affect your life? What changes would you need to make and are we Americans willing to make them? I am going to try. The grocery store is not far from where I live, the library is close and so is the post office. All within walking or riding distance. I could even walk or bike to my work.

Make it a family challenge. Take the kids and the wagon to the grocery store for your next visit. Can we make it "on our own two feet"?

Friday, September 19, 2008

How to help those affected by Hurricane Ike

Much help is needed for the families affected by Hurricane Ike. Please follow the link below to find out where you can volunteer and/or donate items in need. Scroll down the page to find the info.

Hurricane Ike Help

Fall Resolutions

Everyone knows about those New Year Resolutions. We spend the last half of each year developing, analyzing, and changing them. Come January 1st, we pick one of them and then ...what? How many of us make them happen? I've made a few resolutions..achieved some..like losing weight and making time for personal prayer. There are many that have just fallen to the wayside. Snatched up by life and discarded as crazy ideas or bad dreams. This year I want to make a fall resolution. I want to get more involved in my community. I want to help others. Hence, this blog. I have already contacted some agencies in the area and am taking the steps towards living a more charitable life. I don't mean charitable in the sense that I am going to give more money. Charitable in that I want to Love as God loves others. I want to see with His eyes, talk with His mouth and hear with His ears. True charity. True love of others. I have never visited a nursing home or sat with the sick and dying. I have never been to a soup kitchen, I haven't been to a hurricane ravaged city. Sometimes just taking time to really listen to those in my life. To hear them in a new way. To see their struggles and pain, their joys and happiness. I resolve, this fall, to do these things. To offer myself to others in ways I never have before. I ask for your prayers to help me keep my resolve. Would you like to join me in making a fall resolution? Share your resolutions and your experiences here. I know there are many talented people out there that can inspire and motivate us all. I look forward to hearing from you.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

It's the Little Things

The Prison Angel, Mother Antonia's Life of Service in a Mexican Jail
by Mary Jordan and Kevin Sullivan

What is a twice divorced mother of seven doing wearing a habit? She is pouring her life into serving the poor, especially prisoners, in Tijuana, Mexico.
Mary Brenner Clarke has a servants heart. Losing her mother at a young age, her father taught his children the importance of helping others. She knew at an early age that she wanted to serve others. But How? When? Where?

This book details her life as a young girl from a well to do family, failed marriages and her search for fulfillment that ultimately brought her to the Habit and opened the doors for older women longing to serve and share their gifts. Mother's order the Eudist Servants of the Eleventh Hour, gives women, ages 45 to 65, the opportunity to serve their Church and their communities as religious sisters.

Perhaps you also have a desire to serve, or maybe, you feel like something is missing in your life. Joining a religious order may not be possible. So what can you do?
Mother Antonia, making peanut and butter and jelly sandwiches for prisoners, offers this advice, " There are so many things people can do. It doesn't have to be enormous. It's the little things. Anyone can make a sandwich."

This book is an awesome testament to serving others in the face of much adversity. What Mother Antonia has done is reach out, give completely of herself.

" ..once I choose who I love and who I don't, I am no longer God's servant." - Mother Antonia

You can find this book at Amazon.com

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Imagine what a dollar can do!



From the CSS Website:

Catholic Social Services, Augusta, Georgia wants to thank you for checking out our Kids Who Care Program. We are hoping that we can add your name to the list of children who have donated a dollar to help us assist those families in need.

We recognize that there are children out there, just like yourself, who really care about others, but might not know how they can help. Every little bit helps, and your dollar, along with all the other dollars donated by kids all over the country, can help in many ways. It might allow a child to replace an old, worn out pair of shoes that no longer fits so that they can have a decent pair to wear to school, or provide them with a coat so they can stay warm in the cold, windy, winter months. A child's family might lose their home because a parent has lost their job, or become critically ill. Your dollar could help them pay the rent or house payment, keep their electricity on, or provide food for them until the parent can find another job. That $1.00 donation will enable us to purchase and give 5 pounds of food to a family. There are many unexpected things that can happen in people's lives that will cause them to need our help in getting back on their feet again.

We know you care about others or you would not have visited our website. If you would like to help other children whose families need our assistance, please wrap a dollar in a piece of paper. On that piece of paper write your name and address, put it in an envelope, and mail it to:

* Catholic Social Services
* Kids Who Care
* 811 12th Street
* Augusta, GA 30901

When we receive your $1.00 donation we will put your name, city and state on this web site so you can watch this program grow. Please pass this along to other kids whom you think might like to help. Together we'll use the power of the Internet to help others who are having a great deal of difficulty in their lives.

Thank you for caring, and God bless you and your family

Monday, September 15, 2008

Left To Tell Foundation

Immaculee Ilibagiza is a survivor of the Rwanda genocide. Her story is heartwrenching, awesome and powerful. I encourage you to visit her website, listen to her story and help her cause.

Immaculee's Official Site

The Left to Tell Charitable Fund has already relocated more than 60 Rwandan orphans and has offered support and communication outlets for the past pains and guilt of the tragic genocide. “I hope that one day we can laugh and move on holding hands despite the past,” ImmaculĂ©e says. “Life has a lot to offer and a lot of love to give.” read more at:

Left To Tell Foundation

Catholic Charities of New Orleans

I found this over at Catholic Tube

Habitat for Humanity




Habitat for Humanity is heading to Texas to assess the damage there after Hurricane Ike. You can visit their website to donate towards helping the rebuilding of homes for low income families. Or check into your local Habitat for Humanity if you'd like to take a more hands on approach.


World Habitat Day is October 6, 2008. Check them out on line at http://www.habitat.org

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Hurricane Ike Help


Hurricane Ike is wreaking havoc across Eastern Texas and Louisiana. There will be an obvious need for water and supplies in the coming days. Save the children.org is accepting donations to assist those in need. You can click on the picture below to go directly to their website and contribute.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Voting

If you are planning to vote in the 2008 General Election, take some time to check out all the candidates on your states ballot. There are several websites online that offer a concise history on each states candidates. You can find out where the candidates from all parties stand on the issues that are important to you.

I believe that voting is an obligation to my family as well as my neighbors. The choice that I make in my vote will affect their futures. So I urge you to take a moment or two to review the candidates for both the Presidential election and those running for office in your state. Be an informed voter.

Darfur

Darfur is in an ongoing state of genocide. You can find more info at www.savedarfur.org.

California is awaiting Gov. Schwarzenegger's signature on a contract prohibition law..encourage your state government to follow suit with California and Arizona and prohibit American companies from doing business with those who support the genocide in Darfur.

The Darfur Contracting Act Passes California Legislature

Thursday, September 11, 2008

A move in the right direction

This blog is dedicated to Our Lord Jesus Christ, through our loving Mother Mary.

This is the beginning of something I hope will move us, as Americans, Christians and human beings, to recognize and live out the Corporal and Spiritual works of mercy.


I will post here my thoughts on helping others, review books and articles that talk about social issues in our country and our world, and list opportunities to live out the works of mercy.

I look forward to hearing about your experiences helping others in your communities, or opportunities that you know about that are in line with the corporal and spiritual works of mercy.

We have heard a lot about change lately..it seems to be overused and undervalued. Together, with prayer, hard work, and sacrifice we can make a difference. We can do something to effect real change in the lives of others.

So get involved! Get moving! Roll up your sleeves and dig in! In the words of Mother Teresa:
"Do not wait for leaders; do it alone, person to person. "

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