Its been a long time since I’ve written anything! There aren’t too many changes in our daily life, but it seems like Benedict continues to grow even faster each day.
As for B’s latest craze, it’s books… It’s always story-time these days! I should be over the moon about this, and I am really. But sometimes it can get just a bit too much! After reading the same book so many times you don’t need the book any more to read it, it’s quite difficult to keep up the enthusiasm!
A few days ago, when Benedict was following me around with his book in his hand and making the noise which means “read to me, read to me!” an image randomly came into my head – it was the sign that Fr Alexander had up in his sacristy at St Patrick’s:
Celebrate this Mass as if it is your first Mass, your last Mass, your only Mass
I think it was Mother Teresa who originally said it. And it really struck me – I know reading a book isn’t the same as celebrating the Mass, but I thought, actually yes – I need to read this book as if it was Benedict’s first book, last book, and only book that I read to him. I know Mother Teresa spoke often about doing small things with great love, and motherhood is slowly showing me the reality of this.
So whether I’m reading to B, preparing his meal, dressing him, bathing him, picking him up, or changing his nappy, I need to stop my groaning thoughts, and see these tasks for what they really are, an opportunity to love.
Mother Teresa and Housewives – The Road to Holiness is a really short but inspiring article for all wives and mums!
I had to post this – It’s quite American but then I don’t think “Mum-nipotent” has the same ring to it! The video was made by Ascention Press for Mother’s Day and its pretty sweet. Ascention Press have also got a book by Danielle Bean for Catholic mothers: Momnipotent: The Not-So-Perfect Woman’s Guide to Catholic Motherhood. It’s had very good reviews and definitely worth a look.
When the conversation with my “non-religious” friends turns to how many children we’d like, they look at me as if I’m absolutely crazy when I say at least five would be incredible! I know the norm nowadays is two, preferably one of each, and I think even that “norm” is increasingly decreasing to one child in a family. But I’m from a family of six which I guess is relatively big in today’s world; Eoin is from a family of ten! So I think we’ve always hoped to have our own big family.
Recently I’ve been reading Kimberley Hahn’s book “Life-giving love.” It’s a good book to dive into when you have a quiet moment; a baby-napping moment! It’s refreshing to read about children in a positive light; that it’s actually exciting to find out you’re having a baby! The main point throughout the book is openness; it doesn’t matter how big or small your family is, as long as you’re open to life. The book also addresses the moral issues clouding marriage today like contraception, infertility and sterilisation, as well as talking in depth about the Church’s teaching on natural family planning.
If Eoin and I do have a big family, I know it will be challenging/chaotic/stressful/noisy etc, and my friends are probably right to think I’m crazy. But I know it will also bring about generosity/joy/laughter/fun/happiness.
I came across this book “Faith Beginnings” on another Catholic Mum’s blog… It is brilliant! It talks about ways of developing a child’s faith right from birth. Until reading this book, I never thought about my 8 month old having faith at his age. Of course, I knew that when he was baptised God made His home in him, but I guess I thought he would be older and talking before he could have faith in Christ.
The book suggests really simple things, like whispering the Hail Marys of the rosary to soothe your baby to sleep. And so by praying with them on a regular basis it becomes a normal part of their daily life.
I remember being surprised a couple of months ago when, seemingly out of the blue, my husband said grace with Benedict before he fed him his dinner. He took Benedict’s hand to make the sign of the cross and then prayed the grace we normally say. It was so lovely to watch, and I couldn’t understand why we hadn’t done it before! It seemed so obvious!
The book also talks about the sensory nature of the Catholic Church; the smells of incense, the stain glass windows, statues of saints, holy water at the entrance of the church, the ringing of bells during the Consecration. In an age where there are countless sensory classes being offered to mothers and babies, the Mass seems a great way of introducing your child to the different senses, AND it nourishes their soul too!!
This book is definitely a must for any Catholic parent!