Keeping Faith

Huge disclaimer: I haven’t read this book, which is apparently about how faith is lost or kept over generations, but I’m very curious about it.  Still, I have been thinking a lot of its summary via this book review in the New York Times  although I’ll admit that my thoughts are a little jumbled this afternoon (I know. I’m writing about a book review, not actually reading something! Sigh). The premise of the book hits a nerve with me, namely that many families intend to pass on faith and many may … [Read more...]

Redemptive Haircuts

There is a curious barbershop on our military post, near where my husband goes to work each day. It has an inauspicious brick exterior and erratic hours. For the first couple months we lived here at Fort Leavenworth we tried to figure out how to get haircuts at this place... we had heard they were $4 apiece! My husband took our sons in a couple times and was told that they could only get their 30 minutes in a barber chair with an appointment. It seemed inconvenient, but we gave it a shot. The … [Read more...]

Helping Our Kids Deal with Stress

One of my children seems particularly affected by stress. This child tends to be pretty easy-going and slow-moving, so it often comes as a surprise when I hear the words "I'm so stressed out, there's just too much pressure!" come out of this child's mouth. Often, I cannot understand what is so stressful about the situation; in my eyes, everything is under control and we are just plugging right along. When I ask what is stressful, this child answers, "What if the teachers change their mind and … [Read more...]

Keepin’ It Real: Grace From a Dirty Sink

Sometimes it seems the way we bless one another best is just to be real and frank and forthcoming.  Because this journey of life isn't easy for any of us and sometimes its nice to know we're not walking the road alone.I had the chance to keep it real yesterday when I hosted my young daughters' playgroup here at the house.  I ushered our friends through the front door, down the hallway, and there, in the middle of my kitchen, sat my dirty, neglected sink. Breakfast bowls spilled out from the t … [Read more...]

There’s Still Time…

I’m very embarrassed to say that my daughter saw our nativity for the first time yesterday. Also, our second purple candle on the Advent wreath had yet to be lit, and our first one is almost gone because I left it burning on accident one night the first week after saying our prayer around the Advent wreath (which, as an aside, we’ve done twice).  All of this does not bode well for our first Advent as parents, nor does it mesh with whatever rosy catholic dreams I had envisioned in ‘passing on the … [Read more...]

Book Suggestions for Boys

Here at Building Cathedrals, we have had several posts dealing with book suggestions for various ages of children, and I am writing today to ask for advice on books for a 4th-grade boy. One issue that we have encountered recently is that our 4th grader has become borderline obsessed with two particular series of books (do I even need to name them? ahem, Harry Potter and Percy Jackson), and is finding all other books unappealing by comparison. He has read and re-read all of these books multiple … [Read more...]

Migraines in Children

I think that we just experienced our first migraine in one of our children, and it threw me for a loop! In part, the reason that I am posting so late today is because I had my daughter home with me, even though she would have been perfectly fine to go to school. She woke up happy and feeling great, whereas for the past 48 hours she had been miserable with a splitting headache. In retrospect, I think that she may have had a migraine (or just a prolonged headache?) brought on by stress, and I am … [Read more...]

Jesse Tree – It’s Not too Early to Start Planning

The beginning of Advent often sneaks up on me, meaning that I am only sometimes successful with family traditions like the Jesse Tree. This website has some great tips on planning for doing a Jesse Tree with your family this year, and it also contains a link that you can use to purchase the materials if you're not feeling crafty this year (I would fall into this category most years!). In the past, I have also printed Jesse Tree ornaments from this website, and then simply taped them to a wall in … [Read more...]

Pope Francis Encourages Parents to “Waste Time with their Children”

Pope Francis, in a recent gathering of the Pontifical Council for the Family, "asked parents to 'waste time' with their children, so that they can realize that love is always free" (quote from this article). For those of us who spend a lot of time "wasting time" with our children, this statement is very encouraging! When we sit on the floor with our 3 year-old to assemble a puzzle, snuggle on the couch to read "The Yellow Tutu" for the twentieth time, or simply spend time singing songs to our … [Read more...]

I Don’t Want to Be Told That Women Can Have It All

... and Professor Elizabeth Corey has finally laid out the tradeoff in a beautiful, thought-provoking manner I appreciate. Please stop reading me with your free time and read this, it has given me food for thought and fodder for argument for nearly a week now. I simply cannot stop thinking about the way in which Prof. Corey frames the debate of working v. stay-at-home-mothering.Essentially, Professor Corey writes that there are two competing desires within modern women: a)the desire to … [Read more...]