7QT: Solemnities, Winter, and Prints

Happy Friday! Linking up with Anabelle (who is hosting this week’s 7QT)¬†on this fine day ūüôā

1 // This week started off pretty fantastically with the lingering graces from the Blessed is She Advent retreat. We had a small group of six women, and it was truly wonderful. I got in my sisterly community time while also being a happy hostess. Many thanks to Blessed is She for putting it together!

2 // I’ve done a fairly decent job so far of decorating our house and making it a bit of our own. There are limitations because the house is co-owned with Kevin’s brother, who is currently deployed. We don’t want to take over the house completely or alter it in anyway out of respect for him. There is still one giant wall, though, that is empty behind the couch. So I purchased this frame set from Amazon and also bought¬†some lovely prints from Erica of Be a Heart Designs¬†and the WanderlustStar Etsy shop.

3 // The amazon¬†set comes with two¬†5×7 frames, four¬†4×6 frames, and one¬†8×10 frame. The prints I bought on Etsy will go into the smaller frames, and the 8×10 is going to be a seasonal print that I’ve put together. It’ll be my little way of adding some seasonal decor without trying very hard. You can grab a free copy of my winter print here! That photo is a picture of our driveway. Reasons why I’m hoping this winter is a bit mild.

4 // Tuesday was the solemnity of the Immaculate Conception. Aka one of the very best days of the year. Seriously. It’s a very special day for me and Kevin (and all practicing Catholics). We attended Mass, celebrated by our friend Fr. Michael, with Suzanne, had a few special moments after Mass, and then went to Fitger’s Brewhouse to celebrate! It was a wonderful evening with the four of us. Lots of laughter and happiness. There were a couple parishioners of Fr. Michael’s at a table nearby who ended up paying for our meal. I was blown away¬†by their generosity! The whole day was simply splendid.

5 // Since moving here, I’ve been ecstatic about all the time I have to cook and bake from scratch. It makes the paleo(ish) lifestyle way easier and more budget-friendly. For some reasons, I entered into a total slump this week. It’s like I have no desire at all to do anything in the kitchen. Of course, I don’t really have a choice if I want to eat…so I do. But it’s so odd for me to feel this way! I’m hoping it’s just the blah of the cold and rainy weather.

6 // Speaking of rainy weather, it was pretty gross out yesterday and I looked at the forecast and it called for continuous rain until Sunday. I was so not having that. And then at dinner time I looked outside and saw that it had changed to snow! It really does make my heart happy to see the lovely snow fall around our house, but I’m conflicted because that also means snow¬†removal. Yikes. And if you look at the print above, we have a pretty lengthy (dirt-road type) driveway. At least by my East coast suburban standards. So…I will take the snow…in little increments. So far it’s been beautiful!

7 // This weekend should be pretty exciting as we have quite a bit going on. Tomorrow is the Newman Alumni Christmas party for Kevin’s college campus ministry. A fair number of people are traveling into town, and a couple will be staying with us. It’s always a joy to host additional people here. Then on Sunday (Gaudete Sunday!), we’ll be going with a few friends to cut down our own tree! Not just to point at one and some employee cuts it down. We get to cut it down! I’m really excited for this. Kevin will still probably be the one to do the work, but I’m still stoked for the experience. Then we’re going to setup the trees at our respective homes and finish the night with apps & a movie. #livingthegoodlife

I hope you all have a delightful weekend!

The Man, the Saint, the Patron of our Church

Happy solemnity of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary! What.a.guy. If you need any background on how me and Kevin met, do not fret, it is documented! Long story short, I prayed the 30-day novena to St. Joseph about marriage, and he responded quickly and powerfully! Kevin asked me out at the end of the novena and our first date was the day after it ended. And now we’re married. So I’d say St. Joseph was looking out for me. My relationship with Joseph blossomed shortly after my relationship with Mary, which makes sense. I was experiencing such beauty through my mama Mary, and she clearly wanted me to know the Holy Family in it’s fullness. And I was like, okay. (More enthusiasm.)

About 7 months into our relationship, Kevin and I took a pilgrimage to Montreal to see St. Joseph’s Oratory. I cannot begin to describe the role that this trip played in our relationship and my discernment. From the beginning, St. Joseph has had a hand in our lives, and I am so grateful for his powerful intercession. I know he’s still looking after us, and I need to continue to plea for his help because he does not disappoint.

So let this day be a beautiful one as we honor the strong, humble, gentle, and loving St. Joseph! And please please please read through the litany because it is one of the most beautiful novenas I have ever prayed.

St. Joseph's Oratory in Montreal

Monday updates & a great feast!

Happy feast of the Immaculate Conception! A truly grand solemnity, indeed! This day is quite special to Kevin and I for many reasons, not the least of which being that it’s simply a wonderful day to honor our lady! I’ll admit, we indulged a bit this morning and woke up early to watch an episode of Parks and Rec. Hey, we all celebrate differently. We look forward to Mass this evening followed by a nice reception with the Oblates of the Virgin Mary.

This past weekend was very full, but really a joy. I’m so grateful for the drastic separation from work life and home life. Work has been hard, but my time at home and with friends has been absolutely life-giving. Saturday I was able to spend time with my good friend and her husband beginning with confession (I’ll always take a free ride to the church). Then we enjoyed the afternoon at their apartment decorating and making it festive. It was so much fun and very relaxing. Exactly what I needed.

Afterwards, I met up with Kevin and we went to dinner with a friend’s parents. This friend is a seminarian in Rome studying for the Boston diocese, and his parents and I have developed¬†a great¬†relationship over the past couple years (they even came to my wedding in May when he couldn’t!). So we decided to get dinner (which was a blast) and go to the Festival of Lessons & Carols at the seminary here. They hadn’t been around the sem much since their son had been asked to go to Rome, so it was¬† real treat for them as well.

The concert is my favorite festive thing to do during Advent. Kevin and I have gone the past three years now, and it truly helps us delve deeper into the season. It’s a night of scripture, carols, and hymns put on by the seminarians and they always sound amazing. This year was no exception.

Sunday we went to Mass followed by a morning of homemade waffles with two good friends! And the rest of our day was spent with just the two of us walking, resting, andddd watching the Chronicles of Narnia…a movie that we find most appropriate for this time of year.

I’m very grateful for the beautiful moments that were had. May this week be full of many more!

The Feast of the Assumption

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What a beautiful solemnity it is! The image above is one that I had taken nearly two years ago at our parish, I think (when I first got my iPhone). It was my lock screen image for a looong time (until pics of Me and Kevin became a normal thing). Then a few weeks ago my phone did this reset thing and erased all my content from the past year (thank goodness I had uploaded any and all wedding/honeymoon pics shortly before that), and brought me back to July 2013. And this became my lock screen again. Even with all my frustration at the iPhone, it made me smile to see this image again.

Thank you, Mama Mary, for always looking out for us. We offer everything to our Lord through your loving hands.