Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Merry Christmas, Pope Francis!

While it might seem a little early to be wishing Pope Francis a Merry Christmas,if you are going to do it by mail, you have to start early.

All the Little Flowers looked their best and wore their aprons so that we could send a picture in the card.  It's so hard to get them all settled and looking in one direction, but when I promised they could make some silly faces after a good one, they did it!

I ordered a beautiful card from Treat .  It's was a pretty card and I added their nice pose on the front in sepia.  Then on the inside, I added one of their silly poses.  Pope Francis just seems so down to earth, I figured if he saw the card, he would get a chuckle.  I added that we loved him and were praying for him.  I'm just waiting for it to be delivered to me and I'll be sending it off.  Treat doesn't deliver overseas, but it should be in the mail by the end of the week.  Below are the mailing addresses that I found for the Pope.

His Holiness, Pope Francis PP.
00120 Via del Pellegrino
Citta del Vaticano 


His Holiness Pope Francis
Apostolic Palace


His Holiness Pope Francis
Vatican City State, 00120

I have heard that Pope Benedict used to answer some of the Christmas cards.  Wouldn't it be awesome to get a response?  No matter what, the girls were so excited to think that they were sending their Pope a card. 

Now back to Thanksgiving!! 

UPDATE:   The card was mailed off to the Vatican and postage was $1.10 for a regular Christmas card envelope.   It was mailed from Pennsylvania.

Monday, November 18, 2013

A Stocking for Jesus

With Christmas music already playing in stores, I thought it would be good to get the girls to focus on preparing for Jesus instead of making their lists for Santa.  There is a sweet little book called, "A Stocking for Jesus".  Here's what the book looks like because I can't even remember where I got it from.

In the story, the little girl is helping her family decorate for Christmas.  She notices stockings for everyone in the family, including the cat, but no stocking for Jesus.  Her and her mom go out and buy a beautiful stocking for Jesus.  Then throughout Advent, they write out what gifts they give to Jesus.  They visit someone in the nursing home, pray for the sick and donate their old clothes.  Then they wrap up all their papers in little boxes and put them in Jesus' stocking.

After the story, I encouraged the girls and moms to think about what they can do for Jesus for his birthday.  We went around the room with the girls calling out ideas.  Afterwards it was time to make our own stockings for Jesus which the girls will fill with their gifts to Jesus.

A few weeks ago, Joann Fabrics had a sale on their felt.  I bought some white and using my pinking shears, cut out stockings.  I used red thread and just did a quick stitch to sew them.  At the top, I added a little ribbon loop so that the girls could hang them up.  

I kept the supplies simple as it could get expensive to go to fancy.  The buttons came from a fabric outlet.  I attempted to dye them but Pinterest failed me.  I wound up spray painting them red.  I printed out "Jesus" onto the fabric ahead of time and sewed them onto the hearts for each girl.  The girls got to pick their buttons and ribbons.  It's so neat how each one of them was unique.

Here are some pictures of a few of them.


We continued our discussion on friendliness this evening.  It is nice to have a second meeting each month to sometimes continue discussions.   I know there are several girls in our group that really struggle with being shy.  My daughter is one of them.  I really wanted to give the girls some good tips that they could use to help them be friendly.

- First I let them know that it might not be comfortable but to try it anyways!!  Like any virtue, it takes practice to become friendly.  I shared that I struggled when I was growing up with being shy and that I still struggle.  It's not always easy for me to talk start conversations with people, but I know that I have to work on it.

- Next, start with a simple hello.  It doesn't have to be a long, drawn out conversation.  They can simply say hello, but make sure to say it with a smile and eye contact.  I had a couple of girls try this out and it was really tough.  Making eye contact when you are shy takes a lot of practice.

- Be focused on the person.  Don't be on a phone or playing a video game.  Show the person that you are interested in what they have to say.

- Never forget to pray about it.  Ask Jesus for help.  I shared that when we first moved to this town, I asked God to help me make some Catholic friends.  The next thing I knew, I was being led to start a moms' group at church which also led to starting Little Flowers.  God answered my prayer.  Of course I pointed out that He didn't just drop the friends in my lap.  I had to leave my comfort zone, but He truly blessed me.   I have some very wonderful friends now.

They were all given a homework assignment to work on this week.  Go up to at least one person that they don't usually talk to and say hello. Perfect way to get started on being friendly

I gave the girls time at the end of the meeting to practice .  They were encouraged to pick a friend that they might not know very well, and visit with them.  They spread out around the room and sat face to face.  It was great to see.  Even my very shy daughter came home all excited.  She shared that she had made a new friend!!  We are off to a good start.


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Friendliness - Wreath III

If there is one thing that I really learned from this last meeting is that the girls love to play games.  They LOVED the games this month.

There is a lot of helpful information in the leader’s manual to help with planning.   Jessica started the lesson by explaining the virtue of friendliness.  She made sure to point out that there is a difference between friendship and friendliness.  Friendliness is about being warm and kind to all, not just our friends.

The saints of the month are Ruth and Naomi.  Jessica read us their story.   Since we have talked about Ruth and Naomi before, the older girls knew the story.  It's wonderful that these stories and saints are being reinforced time and time again.

After talking about the saints, the girls gathered to hear the story, "The Selfish Giant", by Oscar Wilde.  I think this was a new book for all of us which was surprising since this isn't a new book.    This was one of the activities the girls could do to help earn their badge for the month.  YAY!!  

We did one more activity before the games.  Jessica had the girls do a heart activity.  The girls were given construction paper and then draw a large heart.   After that, they wrote down all the friends that came to mind.   Each name was given a certain amount of points depending on the relationship.  The point of the exercise was to have the girls look at all the different people in their lives who are their friends (other Little Flowers, classmates, siblings, parents, grandparents, ourselves, cousins, our Guardian Angel, Jesus).   Let me tell you, it was sort of funny because they were getting a little confused and focused too much on adding up the points which of course was not the point of the exercise.  I did see quite a few light bulbs going off as a new group of people were called out.

Then it was game time!!  These games were found at

The Human Knot

Best played in groups of six to 10, this game involves the cooperation of the entire group. All the members of the game stand in a circle and grab the hand of someone in the circle, but it cannot be the person to their right or left. Once everyone has grabbed hands, they must untangle themselves without letting go of their companion's hands. The participants must communicate and plan how they are going to break the knot. Some of the players may end facing outward, which is okay, as long as no one lets go.

I'm Your Friend

This game encourages children to learn to recognize their friend's voices. One child is chosen to be "it." The child who is "it" sits in front of the rest of the children, her eyes closed. One of the children in the group quietly walks up behind the chosen child and says, "I'm your friend," and then returns to his original seat. The child who is "it" must then guess who it was. It's important that the children who are not "it" do not trade places and that they speak in their normal voices, to assure a fair game.

The girls were so disappointed when the meeting came to a close.  I had to promise that we would have time in the coming meetings to keep playing.  

Saturday, November 2, 2013

The Feast of All Souls

I made myself a rosary today, in memory of my very best friend, Kacy.  It has been over 10 years since she passed away, but she is still in my thoughts all the time.  She loved turtles so when I saw these beads, I knew they would be perfect. 

So on this day, the Feast of All Souls, I pray for Kacy and all the precious souls who have gone before me. 

Eternal rest grant unto them O Lord, 
and let your perpetual light shine upon them.
May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, 
rest in peace. 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Liturgical Calendar - The Week in the Church

While this isn't totally related to Little Flowers, I thought I would share the liturgical calendar that I made for our church.  It's right above the drinking fountain so that anyone who gets a drink can see it.

I got the calendar from the USCCB website.  While I would have loved to include all the saints from both the old and new calendar, I stuck with what the USCCB calendar had on it.  I thought it best to keep things simple.    I also used information from the Catholic Culture website.  They have great ideas on activities to do on each feast day too.

This was super simple to make.  I used a regular bulletin board and just nailed a very thin piece of wood for the clothespins to hang.  Each season, I will change the background colors.  Of course when I took the picture, we were in Ordinary Time.  One each saint card, I try to find a picture of the saint, a quote by the saint and what they are a patron saint of.  There just isn't enough room to be writing bios about each one.

This was a fun project.  I love sitting down each week to learn about the saints for the week and the  seasons in the Church.   This would be a great tool for a group or family to have.


Monday, October 21, 2013

First Service Project of the Year - Get Well Cards

Over the summer, I received a letter from the Pastoral Care Department of a local Catholic hospital.  They were asking for handmade pick me up or get well cards.  I thought it would be an easy and fun idea for our group.  Also, it was a great way to get the girls thinking about helping others.

I had to really think about how to do this project.  My daughter can work on one card for an hour if she is really into it or spend a minute slopping it together. Because I wanted to make sure the cards were thoughtfully done, I decided to pick out 5 designs for the girls to choose from and let them assemble the cards.  They were then able to write some encouraging words inside and draw a picture if they wanted to.

I wrote some suggestions up on the chalk board for what they could write inside.  It's important to remind the kids that God is capitalized.  From past experience, kids forget to do this a lot!!  I also had a handout with ideas.  It would have helped to actually hand it out.  Next year, I won't forget.  The girls certainly needed help with ideas.

Here are the designs we used.  Having a die cut machine definitely comes in handy.  I had a sample of the design with all the pieces for the girls to assemble themselves.  They did a great job.  The girls and moms were able to complete almost 70 cards!!!  I can't wait to take them to the hospital.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Family Fun Night

While this post isn't just about our Little Flowers group, almost the whole group showed up to Family Fun Night.  It was a great way for us to practice some Eutrapelia with our families.   

This is the second year that our parish has had this event.  We supplied the hot dogs, and a baked potato bar, and the families brought a side dish or dessert to share.

There were games and crafts for the kids, and of course, the adults were welcome to join in.

There was St. Katereri's Bow and Arrow Shoot.  A chance to knock away the sins and draw closer to God. This was truly a hit.  There was a line there the whole night.  Certainly a keeper.

Next was St. Isidore's Pumpkin Patch.  Just in case you don't know (I know I had to look it up).  St. Isidore is the patron saint of farmers.  I made sure to use small enough pumpkins so that they wouldn't break open.  This one was another hit. 

Of course a party wouldn't be complete without a St. Martha's Cupcake walk.  This was perfect for the Little Flowers.  They had just learned that St. Martha was a busy bee.   There were 6 different saints and when the music stopped, a saint's name was called out.  If you were sitting on that chair, you won a cupcake.

We had a couple more games, the Halo Toss and St. Peter's Keys.  I think the St. Peter's Keys game was a little too tame for the kids.  They were much more interested in the more active games.  Oh, and one more game, the saints memory game.  I saw quite a few kids over there playing with their friends. 

There were also plenty of crafts to do.  

I do want to thank Shower of Roses, Catholic Inspired, and Memories of a Catholic Wife and Mother for some of these ideas.  I have been busy pinning away waiting for a chance to use some of their ideas.  Made planning this party so easy.

This was such a wonderful chance for the families of the parish to come together.  I enjoyed watching them relaxing and visiting.  It was also great seeing the kids really enjoying themselves.  How wonderful that they will have such fond memories of these get togethers at the church.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


A couple of years ago, I took on the crazy task of making aprons for all the girls.  God is so good!!  I had never sewn an apron before so I know it had to have been His idea. I don't have a pattern, but I did write down the measurements.  They are fairly easy to make, one size fits all and there's plenty of room on them for all the badges. 

Using a coupon from Joann's, I was able to buy a bolt of fabric fairly cheap and all the moms chipped in.  If I remember right, it was about $5.00 each.   The great thing is that we had so much material left that I will be able to continue making aprons for new members for the next few years.  While they will  have to purchase their aprons, that money gets put right back into the group.  When the time comes to buy more fabric, the money will be there.

I love the way the girls look when they all have on their aprons.  If we want them to all look uniformed, all they have to do is put on a white shirt.  It doesn't matter what they wear on the bottom.  They just tie on their aprons and they all look great.

Time to get started sewing aprons for new members.  So much for getting a head start over the summer.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Spreading the Word

I'm a very happy leader this evening.  A while ago, my co-leader suggested that we send an article about Little Flowers to our diocesan newspaper.   Since I don't fancy myself to be much of a writer, I told her to go for it.  Well this evening I was able to see it online.  The article got published!!!

I love the idea that Little Flowers is making the news.  It seems the Girl Scouts makes the diocese's newspaper a few times a year.  Hopefully this will encourage other moms or parishes to start Little Flower groups of their own.

If you are a leader of a Little Flowers Girls Club, I encourage you to get the word out.  Submit an article to your diocesan newspaper.

Here's a link to the article about our group.  It's on page 14.

Monday, October 7, 2013


I have to admit, I was a little nervous about doing this virtue.  I mean, it took me forever to even learn how to pronounce it!!!  So, I did what I always do.  I worked on it, set it aside for awhile and prayed on it.  Yesterday, it all came together.  It amazes me every time.  God just puts it in my heart, and then I get excited!!!

Tonight was the first meeting that I wasn't nervous at all.  Not sure if it's because I'm finally getting comfortable or what, but it was great.  It always makes it interesting having two daughters in the group.  My youngest was just a little too energetic and talkative this evening, but I know she is just excited to be at Little Flowers.

We started the meeting by taking care of business.  Since I handed out the registration forms at the pizza party, we were able to collect activity fees and money to place an order for badges and books.  Last year, I made the mistake of letting moms place a few different orders.  I decided not to drive my husband crazy with lots of charges on my credit card.  This year one order would be placed after the first meeting.  Worked great.

So onto Eutrapelia.  So what is it?  Well it's a virtue of pleasantness, playfulness, and moderate relaxation.  It can be a type of playfulness, joking and amusement.  St. Thomas Aquinas said that just as the body needs rest when it is tired, so does the soul.

God is so good to us.  He gives us the perfect opportunity to practice this virtue when he gave us Sunday!!!  While we should always begin the day by going to church, we also have the day that we can spend with our family relaxing, and enjoying each others company.

The flower for the month is just perfect for Eutrapelia, the dandelion.  For kids, it's a beautiful little flower that they make into pretty crowns, beautiful necklaces, and make wishes on when they turn fluffy and white.  Now for grown ups, dandelions are weeds and most of us would like nothing more than to get rid of them.  Somewhere along the line, we lose the simple joy of blowing on a dandelion.

So you see, this is a good virtue for us moms to work on as well.  There are probably quite a few of us who have a hard time relaxing or finding that playfulness.  Now on the other hand, the girls may want to have too much playing around or amusement.  Eutrapelia is about finding that balance.

St. Thomas Aquinas wrote about having too much of a good thing (of course my words, not his).  He points out that there can be too much playing or relaxing, that humor can be rude or hurtful, or that having fun can be at inappropriate times.  I had the girls help come up with examples for these things.  Seemed like an easy concept to understand.

We then moved on to our saints of the month, Martha and Mary.  I read about them from the Catholic Children's Bible and we talked about which saint was practicing Eutrapelia.  This was perfect as it led us into one of the activities of the month which was to read Luke 10:38-42 and then rewrite the story or draw a picture.

We also went around the room and told our favorite joke or riddle.  This helped complete #4 of the activities.  The girls really enjoyed this.  Lots of laughs.  One little flower even had a joke book with her and shared some of them with us.

For our craft, I tied it into another activity.  They had to write out five ways in which they like to relax.  I had them work with their moms to write them out and then they made fluffy white dandelions out of yarn and attached them to their lists. Here is the link with the directions for making them.  They turned out great and were easy enough for each of the girls to do on their own.

While we might not be able to work on the badge activities at each meeting, I know how much it is appreciated by the moms (including me).  Tonight we were able to get four of the activities completed!!  More time to practice that Eutrapelia during the rest of the month.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Welcome Back!!!

Finally!!  For the last few weeks, I have been so excited about getting back to Little Flowers.  It feels like it has been forever ago since our last meeting.

We started off our year with a 'Welcome Back Pizza Party'.   I thought it would be a good way to let the girls get some play time in and for any new members to get acquainted with the group.  We had one new member so that takes our group up to 10 girls.    The evening started off with food.  I tried to keep things simple as I knew the girls would be too excited to eat.  One thing I need to remember for next time is music!  It would have made for a more festive time.  Of course our Little Flowers CD would have been perfect.

Before the games, we took a walk over to the church to have a visit before the Blessed Sacrament.  I got the idea from the Little Flowers Girls' Club.  What a wonderful idea to help us always remember to put God first.  Joan has a little prayer posted there that I typed out for all the girls.  We were only there for 5 minutes but enough time to thank God for our group and also work on those church manners and reverence.

After our visit, I had Jessica take the girls downstairs to play some games.  They played an m&m game.  I mean, come on, who won't open up a little with the promise of m&m's?  Here is a copy of the game.  I had to scan it in as I still need to figure out how to save my files from my Silhouette to share.  It will be on my list of things to do.

They also played with the prayer ball.  I've seen people make these out of just plain blow up balls too.  It was totally worth the $10.00 for me as the girls love it.  It is a great filler too for when we need to take up some extra time.  I am always amazed at how excited they get when I bring the ball.  They all want a chance to catch it and pray.

While the girls were busy having fun, I had a meeting with the moms.  It worked out so great doing it that way as it really gave us a chance to take care of business.  We discussed the activities for the year and I stressed the need for volunteers.  We have a really great group of moms who are dedicated to bringing their daughters to Little Flowers.  I want them to feel that this is their group too, not just mine. 

And so begins the new year.  Our first official meeting is in a couple of weeks.  I still need to go back and finish up blogging from last year.  Oh yes, it's good to be back!!


Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Our First Annual Tea Party with the Ladies Auxiliary

This year, we decided to invite the Ladies Auxiliary to join us for our Spring Tea.  We made a great "Save the Date" poster for them at the beginning of the school year and then went to one of their meetings back at the beginning of April to personally invite them to join us.  Not only was the evening to be a tea, but also a modesty fashion show.

This was a very big event for us.  We are down to 7 moms for our group (one just had a baby) and 22 ladies RSVP'd to say that they would be joining us.  I knew we could pull it off, but I wanted it to be really special for the girls too.  I probably drove some of the moms crazy with my little details. 

We were able to use the money from our cookie sale to provide the food and drink and then I asked all the Little Flower moms to bring a dessert.  Each mom and daughter hosted a table which was a wonderful way for the girls to meet some of the ladies from the parish.  It also allowed the ladies to learn more about our group.  The girls were able to show the ladies our display of the virtues that they had worked on.

We were so fortunate that the parish's dishes are quite pretty.  They went well with our china.  I will certainly be on the look out for more china this summer at garage sales.  We were also able to use the table clothes and napkins from the parish.  We had just enough!!!  To continue with the beauty, we had
Angels and Saints At Ephesus playing in the background for our music.  Perfect for a church tea.

At one of the meetings, the girls made cute little flower pots that we used as little favors.  I made up a prayer card with the St. Therese prayer on it to clip on each of them.  There was a little clothes pin inside each flower to hold the card.    All the ladies seemed to love them.

I also got crafty and made little place cards with my Silhouette which made seating everyone quite easy.       

We started the evening with a quick history of Little Flowers and what our group is all about and then after a prayer, we had dinner.  There was chicken salad sandwiches, ham and cheese, and peanut butter and jelly.  There was also a pasta salad and garden salad and some beautiful little cucumber bites.  We also had a fruit tray, cheese tray, and a veggie tray.  I would say we went a little overboard with the food.  We probably would have needed about half of the food, but better to have too much than not enough.

We  had a beverage station with the group's favorite punch, plenty of different teas to choose from, iced tea and water.  There were also fresh lemon wedges and mint for the ladies' tea.  I had my teenage son work as a server.  It helped the girls keep their dresses clean as he did the pouring of the punch.  He was also a great help clearing tables and bringing out desserts.  He even looked the part in his black pants, white shirt and bow tie.

After dinner, the girls put on a modesty fashion show for the ladies.  They modeled their dressy or church outfit and then got to change into a play outfit.  At the end of it, they all came out together with their Little Flower aprons and sang 'O Little Flower of Jesus' for the ladies.  It was so cute.  When the girls came out, the desserts caught their attention and they totally forgot what they were supposed to do.  They were oohing and ahhhhing at the table.  We all got a good laugh out of it.

Unfortunately, I don't have any pictures of the beautiful desserts.  All of them looked so delicious!!  Once again, we went overboard with the desserts.  We could have probably cut the amount in half with this also.

The whole tea lasted about 2 hours.  The girls stayed for a while to help us with some of the clean up and then most of the dads came and picked them up.  It only took a little over an hour to clean everything up which really didn't seem long at all.  Everyone pitched in which really helped.

It was so great visiting with the ladies and also spending time with our daughters.  I know this is going to be a tradition at our church for a long time to come.  Our girls are going to grow up feeling they are very much a part of the church.  When they attend activities, they are going to know the people around them.  What a good feeling!!

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Big Sleep Over

We survived the big sleep over!!!  What a great time.  This is the second year that we have done this and the girls are already planning for next year.

The evening started at 5:30 pm on Friday night.  Siblings were invited to come along if dad didn't get off of work on time.  We ate at 6:00 pm.  Dinner was easy.  We had pizza, a veggie tray, chips and pretzels.  For dessert, the girls got to make fruit pizzas which were a real hit.  They were seriously delicious.  I used the frosting recipe from here and the cookie recipe was the same one from our cookie sale.

We also had a table set up with the scrapbook pages that I had made a few weeks ago.  It was a good reminder for all of us about all the hard work that we had done this year. 

After dinner, we went into the church to pray and spend some time with Jesus.  The most precious thing happened.  Oh how I wish I had my camera with me!!!  The girls had gone up ahead of all the moms.  When we got in there, the girls were all kneeling in front of the Blessed Mother and were praying!!!  It made me realize that all the time I spend on Little Flowers is soooo worth it.  They have learned a lot this year and their love for Jesus has grown.

It was then time for games!!  Jessica was in charge of the games.  She had the girls playing some Minute To Win It Games.  They had a blast.  Lots of laughing.  It was hilarious to watch the expressions and poses that they made.  It was great.  Maybe next year, we should get the moms involved!!!  Although it was sort of nice to sit back and just visit while the girls played.

At 9 PM, we popped popcorn and watched My Catholic Family - St. Edith Stein.  It's only 30 minutes long so its the perfect amount of time yet the girls thought it was so fun to get to watch tv.  For some reason, I thought the girls would sort of calm down after the movie.  If they did, it was short lived!!!

Our plan was to get the girls washed up and ready for bed after the movie, read a bedtime story and then let them have a little quiet time after lights out.  They did wash up and get their beds all ready.  I got them to settle down and listen to a story.  I read from First Communion Days which is a great little book and then it was lights out.  I figured it would take a half hour or so for them to really calm down and sleep.

Part of the problem is that the moms were sitting next door in the kitchen doing some tea party planning.  Of course, the girls took this to mean that they could have a pillow fight and all that other good stuff.  They certainly were not ready to go to sleep.  Finally around 11:00 PM, I decided it was time to just go to bed to get them to sleep.  It took a little firmness with my daughter and then all was quiet.

Everyone was up bright and early the next morning.  A good thing to remember for next year.  Let them know what time they are allowed to get up.  This year, they were making noise at around 5:45 AM.  I told them all to go back to sleep for another 45 minutes.  I'm thinking next year, around 7:00 AM would be nice, at least in my dreams.

Breakfast was kept simple.  Everyone signed up to bring something and there was lots of fruit, bagels, and muffins.  I think the moms appreciated it after a rough night on the floor.  The mess was kept to a minimum and not too much to clean up.

After breakfast, we got dressed and went over to the church to say the rosary.  I found this wonderful idea for praying the rosary here.  I had wanted the girls to be able to decorate the felt hearts with glitter glue but after trying it at home, I realized that it was going to take longer than 12 hours to dry.  It was still a beautiful visual.  While I led it, Jessica passed out the hearts for the girls to lay down.  We sat up near the Blessed Mother's statue and when we were done, gave Mary all of our hearts.

Unfortunately, it started pouring the minute our sleep over started and never let up enough for us to spend much time outdoors.  It would have helped the girls to burn off some of their energy if they had been able to run around but they still did great.  We had two crafts planned and had been hoping that the weather would improve enough to do the one outside.  It never happened.  No big deal, we laid down a couple of disposable tablecloths and had the girls make their Mary Gardens right inside.

Before the gardens, they got to make necklaces.  I was able to get the bottle caps from Etsy, and the little medals came from Madonna Catholic Supply Company.  Jessica did the wording for the necklaces.  While this activity didn't take very long, it will make a nice keepsake for them to remember their year.

Our last activity was their Mary Gardens.  Jessica is quite the gardener so she was in charge of getting all the plants.  We got the pots at the Dollar Store and I made the grottoes.  The little Mary statues came from Autom.  Before the girls started their planting, Jessica shared the meaning of each flower that was going in the garden.  It was really interesting to us all.  All the moms helped their daughters with their gardens and so the mess wasn't too bad.  My daughter's garden is looking a little wild in this picture, but they all turned out so beautiful!

Whew!!  This was quite the post!!  It was a fantastic sleep over, and I would say the girls and moms all feel a lot closer now.  We are so fortunate that we are allowed to use our church's social hall.  I wish I could say that it's time for a break, but it's now time to get ready for a tea!!!