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Showing posts from December, 2016

States: Felted Ornaments

For my crafty gift this year, I made five state ornaments: Arkansas, Minnesota, Michigan, Georgia and Wisconsin. It was fun to customize the individual ornaments by placing a heart over the area where each person is currently living.

The ornaments were made with a combination of hand sewing and machine sewing. After cutting out the states, I used the sewing machine to sew right near the edge of the shape. The small hearts were also sewn on by machine. Added some stuffin' and finished them off with a blanket stitch edge which gave them a homey look. I was pleased to find a use for my red and white sting (gotta love the dollar section at Target.)

My MIL loved her Michigan ornament. She commented that it would be great to have the year sewn onto the backside. Doh! I always forget to do that. 

I was so busy getting these finished and wrapped up, that I forgot to make a extra WI ornament for our tree. Maybe I'll whip one up tonight while watching a Poirot episode. Take a look at the w…

Feast of St. Lucy: Cherry Cheese Coffee Cake

On the morning of the Feast of St. Lucy, virgin and martyr, in honor of my namesake, the girls and I enjoyed a delicious cherry cheese coffee cake. This simple recipe was found on CatholicCuisine. It calls for things that were already in my fridge/pantry. Love that. Crescent rolls, pie filling, cream cheese, an egg, powdered sugar and a little vanilla. I wimped out on making the traditional Luciakatter, a sweet saffron-flavored twisted bread. But this coffee cake recipe was quick and easy. Plus there's always next year!

While we waited for the pastry to cool, I read a short story about the life of St. Lucy and then we said a prayer asking for her intercession for our family. 

Note: In the future, I hope to up my game a bit and enhance the pastry with dough braids or twists to add some artsy flair. It's such a pretty breakfast treat to eat. 

Cake and Filling Ingredients:

1 8 oz. package of refrigerated crescent rolls1 8 oz. package of refrigerated crescent dough sheet8 oz. cream ch…

Advent Book: The Little Drummer Boy

The Little Drummer Boy, illustrated by Ezra Jack Keats is by far, the most anticipated Advent/Christmas board book in our household. Each page is illuminated with Keats's majestic artwork. The combination of both mediums, paint and collage, bring an exotic flair to the familiar narrative. 
For those unaccustomed to the story, it is about a boy who notices kings traveling from distant lands and follows them to the stable. He watches the kings lay precious gifts beside the baby. The poor little drummer boy has no present to give. So he plays from his heart, a simple song for the King. 

The Little Drummer Boy song is broken up line by line in the book, which makes it easy for young readers to follow along. My 3 year old can read this book from memory! It's one of her favorite books to bring into bed for "quiet time."

The kings are depicted looking exceptionally regal in their fine robes and headpieces.  Just take a look at those outlandish and unusually-shaped gifts! It…

Advent Book: The Crippled Lamb

As we prepare our hearts for the coming of our King, the girls and I have been reading some fun stories.  I've collected Christmas/advent books throughout the year when I spot them at garage sales or St. Vinney's. It's great to have a stash of "new" books to bring out during this time of waiting.

The Crippled Lamb, by Max Lucado was passed down to us by my husband's grandmother. It's a story about a little lamb named Joshua who has a limp leg. He feels left out because he can't run and jump around with the other lambs. Since he is too weak to make the journey to the new meadow, he is sent to the stable for the night. God had a special plan for Joshua that night.

It's a tender-loving story with beautiful oil painting illustrations by Liz Bonham. The illustrations of baby Jesus are adorable. A cute, bright-eyed little infant nestled in the hay. My three year old just loves this book. Parts of the book are repetitive, (the story focuses quite a bit on …

Feast of St. Nicholas 2016

During the first week of Advent, our parish offers wall calendars (great for remembering saint feast days!) and the Magnificat Advent Companion to all the parishioners. We've been reading from the Magnificat Advent Companion as a family.

We read the prayer and reflection of the day every night after dinner. Then the girls get to open their advent calendars. One of the calendars displays the nativity scene and has a bible verse and picture behind each door. The other calendar has small chocolates treats behind each door. (We open the bible verse calendar first.) The girls take turns opening the doors and sharing the chocolate. So far there have only been a few times when the treat didn't make it to the second mouth. We are getting better though.

Our advent wreath sits on the home altar. We were able to use last years purple and pink candles, since they still had some life left in them.

Last night we left our shoes at the front door in hopes that St. Nicholas might make a stop. …