Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy we have been born anew to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead…
In this you rejoice, though now for a little while you may have to suffer various trials,
so that the genuineness of your faith, more precious than gold which though perishable is tested by fire, may redound to praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (from 1 Peter 1:3-9, second reading on Divine Mercy Sunday, April 23, 2017)
Updates on life:
This is long. Stick with me. Or skim, but make sure you get the bolded parts and the news about the planner!
Well, life sure has been busy and upside down and unpredictable around here. In the last few months, I’ve drafted a few posts, and hopefully they’ll find themselves published in time. I’ve spent more time reflecting inwardly than outwardly, more time packing and unpacking things (literally and figuratively), and an incredible amount of time in prayer. When I wasn’t avoiding the computer screen, I spent more time designing for my shop than crafting with words (although I do still write for Blessed Is She, and if any of you my friends and readers have not yet followed Blessed Is She, this is the time to start. Now is always a good time to grow closer to Christ and with Blessed Is She, you’re going to have an incredible community of women to grow with, as well).
My goals in the next few months include resurrecting this space, with a few posts each week. Some will likely be guest posts, so bloggers, hit me up if you’re interested. I’ll have a few ideas I’d like posts on, and they should always be casual and personal (even when informational!) so this space is friendly and warm. I’m also working on boosting my little creative side business, so stick around for updates on that, as well.
In January, we found out that the owners of the house we’d been renting wanted to sell the house. Even though they were going to honor the lease terms for us through the summer, they also allowed for us to end the lease early if we found a new home before the summer. Where we live, it’s crazy difficult to find a place to live, especially with a large family, and especially within our budget. We started looking right away at homes, even as far as 20 miles away from where we are now, and found a new rental down the street from our parish. We packed up and moved all within about 10 days, and unpacked as quickly as possible to avoid our typical 6-month settling-in period. We’ve now been in the new house for a whopping 7ish weeks and feel pretty settled.
There is so much to love about our new home: the location–a 7 minute walk to our church, the yard, which is filled with rose bushes and wildflowers and a spectacular view of a California valley, the fruit trees (avocado, clementine, Meyer lemon, and possibly apricot), the covered patio.
In late March, I had the chance to see my best friend from high school, for the first time in 13 years. Yes, 13 years. She joined religious life, and I got married, and we have been thousands of miles apart for the last gazillion years. Her community had a vows Mass only about 30 minutes away from us, so I took the kids and we celebrated the vows of some sisters, met Sister Rachael, and it was amazing.
As if moving wasn’t enough of a life-upset, we have some other dynamics bringing us to our knees in prayer and humility. Please, please do pray for us if you think of it. Please know I’m always praying in thanksgiving for all the prayer warriors who lift us up. I have seen in the last several weeks how powerful and endless God’s love and mercy is. IT IS SO AMAZING and yet so simple that without having an open and trusting heart, I truly believe that we do not see God working in our lives and loving us every single day. (more on this in a future post).
At a particularly low and difficult point, my husband and I started praying the Divine Mercy novena together. In God’s time, all things make sense, even if we don’t always see that on this side of heaven. This time, I see how His grace and mercy radically transformed us, starting with our prayer together. After a terribly trying Good Friday and Holy Saturday, Fence reached out to me and asked if I wanted to pray the novena. I’d started it myself on Good Friday. Prayer is one of the foundational pieces to our relationship, so yes, of course I wanted to pray with my husband.
Tears threatened to pour out of my eyes through the entire chaplet. These final words in the prayer particular hit my heart and soul:
Eternal God, in whom mercy is endless and the treasury of compassion inexhaustible, look kindly upon us, and increase Your mercy in us, that in difficult moments, we might not despair nor become despondent, but with great confidence, submit ourselves to Your holy will, which is Love and Mercy itself.
You must know by now how much I love Blessed Is She. 😉 In case I’m too subtle, let me show you another fantastic reason to get to know the ministry: their products. I’m not even kidding! The creative heads and hearts designing all this have your spiritual growth and your love for goodness and beauty in mind with every single item that hits the shop.
What’s all the hype, you ask?
- Every month spread lists holy days, saints’ feasts, and includes liturgical colors for the year.
- Weekly layouts
- to-do planning, meal planning, grocery planning, and an entire page each week for notes.
- list what you’re grateful for each day
- novena reminders
- hand-lettered quotes
- monthly saints to inspire you
- and can us color geeks geek-out over the Pantone color choice?? Beautiful.
These have sold out in the past. DON’T WAIT until June to order, when they are shipping. This planner begins in August, so it’s perfect for students, homeschool moms, any moms, anyone who just wants to get back to some sort of organization mid-year with a beautiful planner that lasts longer than 2017. Order now here.