Monday, February 25, 2013

Adopt a Cardinal

This would be a great thing to do with our group.   We won't be meeting for another week, but perhaps I will pass along this info to all the moms. 

From YOUCAT's Facebook page, it's an Adopt A Cardinal.   You'll need to put in your name and email address, and it will generator a Cardinal's name.  It will then email you a few facts about that cardinal. 

Our cardinals need our prayers and this would be a great way to involve our girls.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Modesty and Dressing for Mass

This can NOT be our daughters' role model.  How many times have I had to see this picture staring at me at the checkout counter?  How many times have my daughters viewed it or my son?  Even once is too many.  Since we are starting to get things ready for our tea party, I thought this month would be the perfect time to review modesty and also talk about how we dress for Mass.

I shared this picture with our group last night.  I don't think most of them even recognized who it was.  It certainly doesn't look like Hannah Montana.  I pointed out that the way she was dressed, people weren't seeing her for any of the gifts that God had given her.  We didn't see her voice or her acting skills, but just her body.  I used the book, Dressing With Dignity by Colleen Hammond in helping to plan my short lesson.

We talked about how we should dress for Mass.  We are located near a college campus and sometimes the outfits worn to Mass make me so sad.  I know they can be a distraction to me.  I can't imagine what it may be doing to my teenage son.  We need to make sure to be discussing clothing choices with our girls.   

For our activity, the girls got to be fashion designers.  They got to design an outfit to wear to church and also a casual one.  Moms were to help them decide what would be appropriate lengths for their skirts or shorts.  This was a huge hit.  The girls seemed to really enjoy creating their dolls.  Because our meeting was shortened, they really only had time to make one, but some of the girls gathered materials to take home with them to finish.  I supplied them with lots of fabric scraps, ribbon, yarn and googly eyes.  I also made card stock templates of the doll for the girls to help them cut out outfits.  I got the template from Wendy's Activities.

It's never to early to start talking to our daughters about modesty.  If we wait until they are teenagers, it's going to be too late.  This was certainly a fun and easy way to start or continue that discussion.

One of Those Days

I had one of those evenings.  I'm sure we've all had at least one.  It just seemed nothing that came out of my mouth felt right.  It was such a simple, easy lesson on modesty and yet my thoughts didn't seem to connect.  Having daughters who are excited to have me leading the group doesn't help.  They don't just shoot up their hands at every question asked, they let out a gasp to go along with it.  They want to be helpful but it just throws me off.  It makes me happy that they love Little Flowers, but boy can they drive me crazy.  I am exhausted by the end of the meeting.  So tonight I have the worst headache and feel deflated. 

I know a big part of it is my lack of confidence.  Satan does a good tearing me down.  He leaves me full of self doubt.  How could I ever think that I could lead such a group?  I have to remind myself why I do it.  I also remind myself that I truly feel it was God calling me to do this and if He called me, then He will lead me.

I know I can't be the only person who has ever felt like this and that's why I decided to be honest.  Being a leader can be tough.  I know tomorrow will be a new day.  Nothing like a couple of Advil and a good night's rest to put things in perspective.  Tomorrow I can share the fun we had at the meeting.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Cookie Sale

Well what an exhausting weekend!!  Started off on Friday making 85 chocolate covered pretzels, 2 batches of rice krispie treats and 4 batches of frosting.  I really wasn't sure how many batches of frosting to make.  Good rule of thumb is one batch for every batch of cookies.  This would make sense, but my brain just wasn't getting it.  We ran out when we were frosting on Saturday and I had to run home to make more.  Luckily I live less than 10 minutes from the church so it was quick.

On Saturday, the Little Flowers got together to frost our 200 sugar cookies and set up the table.  All the girls and their moms showed up to help.  It made the work so much easier.  We set up one set of tables for the moms to do the frosting.  The girls were at another set to frost and then another table for some moms to put them in bags with ribbons and prayers.  While the girls did so well, they did get a little bored after a while. That was certainly a lot of cookies.

We sold the cookies after Mass on Saturday evening and then the 2 Masses on Sunday.  God was truly with us.  We made more money than we had in cookies!!!  People were so generous and bought up almost all the cookies.  We only had about 16 treats left in the end.  My heart is just bursting with joy.

I had been so stressed and I know that Satan was tearing at me, trying to make me doubt myself.  I stuck with it though and all the hard work was so worth it.  It wasn't all about the money either.  With this being the first year that the Little Flowers was open to the parish, it was nice for the girls to get some visibility.  I loved seeing our banner hanging up.   I also loved  the opportunity for us to share God's love through the simple prayers attached to each cookies.   One other thing that was important to me was to provide a fundraiser that everyone was able to participate in.  Some fundraisers are so expensive that even if a person wanted to help, they might not be able to afford to.  With a 50 cent cookie sale, I think most everyone can afford to buy one cookie.  Don't get me wrong.  I know that 50 cents might be a lot to a little old lady who is on a fixed income, but I also know she goes home feeling good being able to help out a bunch of little girls.

I am off to take notes for next year and more importantly relax for the rest of the evening!!!

Oops, one of the leftovers.  Smudge is compliment of a little one.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Joy/Mirthfulness - Wreath II

My goodness, I knew that the girls would love balloons, but I don't think I realized how much!!  I led the meeting this month and our virtue was Joy.  I wanted to show them how when we try to use stuff to make us happy, we have to keep "feeding" ourselves to keep that feeling going.  We used a regular latex balloon and the girls got to play "keep the balloon in the air".  Every time they hit the balloon in the air, they had to name something that they thought would make them happy.  I let them play for about 5 minutes until it seemed like it was becoming work to them.  I then brought out the helium balloons.  The oohs and ahhs were great!!  They represented the joy that God can bring.  Sure, helium balloons can start to deflate, they can be filled back up.  Our joy can be restored when we spend time with God.  It's not hard work.  I'm not sure if they heard the lesson as they were so excited about the balloons.

I shared a wonderful story about what happened to me today.  I attend Mass this morning and prayed the rosary afterwards.  Then I went to the Adoration Chapel to spend some time with Jesus.  I admitted that even adults can struggle with believing that Jesus is present in the Eucharist.  After kneeling and praying for a while, I sat back just to take it all in.  I had the most overwhelming feeling that Jesus was there.  I started to cry as I felt so unworthy to be in His Presence.  Then I was filled with incredible joy.  It was the most amazing feeling as I realized that Jesus was there!!!   It was a great lesson, if not for the kids, us moms.

This was the perfect example of adoring the Blessed Sacrament which is something Saint Clare of Assisi, our saint this month, certainly did.  I read them a short story of her life which I got over at Holy Spirit Interactive Kids Zone.

We did a short craft to end our meeting.  We made monstrances out of cardstock.  It is a craft which I got over at Catholic Inspired.  I cut them out of gold cardstock and glued them on white paper before the meeting to help save time.  The girls got to decorate them with glitter glue.  I found big bottles at the dollar store.  They all turned out so beautiful.  In the middle of the monstrance, there was a picture of Jesus.  I had them glue a host over top of Jesus to demonstrate that Jesus is still present even when we don't see him.

The girls got to have a few minutes at the end to play with the balloons again and they all got to take a helium balloon home.   

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Let the Baking Begin!!!

Oh boy!!  What was I thinking?  We are doing a bake sale to raise some money for our Little Flowers group and I decided the moms would make cut out sugar cookies and then the girls could do the frosting.  I thought perhaps 150 cookies sounded good and then we could also sell some chocolate covered pretzels.

I made the dough up the day before we were to do our baking.  This is the recipe that I used and I made 6 batches.  Luckily there were 5 of us who were able to get together.  It was nice to have time just for the moms as it gave us all a chance to get to know each other a little better.  We all took turns rolling out the dough and 6 hours later had 200 heart shaped cookies!!

A funny thought came to me after everyone had left my house.  We have a wonderful kitchen at the church with a couple of big ovens.  We probably could have cut off a couple of hours if we had made them there.  Oh well, it was a nice day, but certainly something to remember for next year.

Our bake sale is next weekend.  Can't wait to see how the cookies turn out!!