Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Phil 4:6-7

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Yarn Along -- a wip and a finished project

I guess all I have time for these days is a Yarn Along post once a week. I was busy getting St. Andrew chaplets in my shop, and have three more commissioned chaplets to make before the beginning of Advent next Sunday. After that, I have to clean and cook for a whole lot of people next week. Doug and I celebrated our 30-year anniversary on Monday and his birthday is on Friday. Crazy times!

I finished the blue blanket I had on the needles last week. Faith and I watched We Bought A Zoo (very cute -- a few bad words, but nothing my kids don't hear while I'm cooking dinner) on Saturday night and I got quite a few inches added. 

Yesterday evening, I cast on a pink hat, because I was headed to parent observation night at dance, and I can't sit still without something in my hands. Bad habit! I did watch her dance, but there's quite a bit of down time -- do I really need to watch her stretch?

I am still previewing a book for a friend, but I admit that not much reading got done this week -- my eyelids are heavy by the time I hit the bedroom.

Join Ginny for more -- especially if you're hunting for a good book.

And for a chance to win one of these darling handknit animals, with a gift to a great adoption charity, go to Jenny's blog.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Yarn Along

I've been desperately trying to write a real blog post (ok, maybe it wasn't desperate, but it was close), but our days are completely filled and homeschooling this one child this year has been exhausting. I know that those of you who homeschool more than one child (like a bunch!) are laughing or scoffing at me right now. But eighth grade and being enrolled in Seton for the first time for Faith is kicking both of our butts. A more distractible child I have never met, and three out of four of my kids have ADD, so I know distraction when I see it. We're going to be seeing the doctor because her attention issues are definitely affecting her school work this year, and no amount of redirecting and reprimanding (or even rewards!) is working. God help me get through this year.

Anyway, this isn't a real blog post, but it's a different post anyway. I mailed away the entire baby layette on Monday (plus the quilt that grandma wanted as well). I should have taken a photo. It was an enormous amount of hand-knits, I'll tell you that. Most babies are lucky to have a hat and booties, much less four hats, four pairs of booties, four bibs, and eight sweaters. I was happy to say "bye-bye baby!" Of course, I promptly cast on a baby blanket. But this is relaxing (almost boring) knitting, and it's not pink, purple, white or ivory! And I have no deadline. Yay!

I am previewing a book for a friend, so I can't share my book, but I will share a few good flicks/series that I watched while I was knitting the layette. They are "grown-up" viewing, but not scandalous.

Monroe -- a sort of British Dr. House, but he's much nicer.

Twinsters -- a documentary about the amazing story of twins separated at birth who find each other on the internet -- the kids can watch this one

Morning Glory -- a very cute flick and if you're a Harrison Ford fan, even better

That's all for now. Join Ginny and friends for more.

Sunday, November 08, 2015

St. Andrew Chaplets

Now that I have the huge knitting project finished, I'm working on creating some more rosaries and chaplets for my Etsy shop. It's looking pretty sparse. I just added some St. Andrew chaplets, if you have a need, and a couple of twine rosaries. I'll be adding some bronze St. Andrew chaplets this week.

The Chaplet of St. Andrew is traditionally prayed during Advent, from the Feast of St. Andrew on November 30, until Christmas. The prayer is prayed fifteen times a day, and the fifteen beads help you keep track.

Hail and blessed be the hour and moment
in which the Son of God was born of the most pure Virgin Mary,
at midnight, in Bethlehem, in piercing cold.
In that hour, vouchsafe, O my God!
to hear my prayer and grant my desires,
through the merits of Our Saviour Jesus Christ,
and of His Blessed Mother. Amen. 

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Happy All Saints Day!

I can't remember the last time All Saints Day landed on a Sunday, but it almost feels like Christmas today. Our parish is going to have a procession of relics and chant the Litany of Saints. I can't wait.

If you have been around this blog long, you've probably seen my All Saints Day and All Souls Day vigil candle decorations, but here are photos again if you needed a reminder.

On All Saints Day we use all our Holy Cards (I use these all year, with each month's saints only, but for All Saints Day we pretty much just use our favorites).

On All Souls Day we use our family's and friend's funeral cards, to remember and pray for all those who have gone before us.

Happy All Saints Day! And don't forget that tomorrow is Soul Cake day.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Four Rosary Giveaway

Four rosaries -- two blue, two teal, all with Sorrowful Mother medals, all with different crucifixes. Just for clarity, if you can't see them, clockwise from the top left blue, the crucifixes are a scrolled style, a Celtic crucifix, a pretty one with filigreed edges, and a San Damiano crucifix (taken).

The names I chose from all those entered are pictured below. The first person (top name) can choose her rosary first, and then the second and so on. I'll be in contact with you, so email me back and let me know which one you'd like (I'll email you in order, after the person before you picks -- sorry this seems more complicated than it did in my head). If you won, leave a comment if you haven't heard from me.

I'm going to get some of these in my Etsy shop. I also have red and black twine, so if you want one and have a color preference, let me know.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Yarn Along Layette

I had to wait until today to get photos of my knitting -- yesterday was a lovely, dark, rainy day, but too dark for photography.

I'm working on the last sweater of the layette. After I finish it, I just have to knit an ivory bib and then I'm finished -- eight sweaters, four pairs of booties, four hats and four bibs. Whew.

Never again, unless it's for my own grandchild, and even then I think eight sweaters is a bit more than most babies can wear.

Top photo is the sweater I'm currently knitting, along with my trusty Kindle. I just started An American Heiress. No comment yet. I finished A Fall of Marigolds and would definitely recommend it.

The photo below is for those of you who wanted to see the entire layette. If you want info about patterns and yarn, just leave a comment. 

See what I mean about a lot of hand-knits? Definitely double click to see it all up-close.

Go see Ginny if you want to see more than baby knits!

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Month of the Holy Rosary Giveaway

"The rosary is the 
weapon for these times."
St. Padre Pio

During this month of the Holy Rosary I usually have a rosary giveaway. This year, I wanted to give away a couple of my most-used rosaries.

Mine is a different color of twine, but this is the style of rosary I sleep with. It has been so helpful during my times of anxiety. Every night I fall asleep praying it, and every morning it's on the sheets in between my husband and me (except for the nights I can't sleep and then I carry it around until I can settle and that's where it is in the morning).

The twine rosaries are perfect to sleep with, because they can't break. They even go through the wash just fine if you happen to forget to grab it off the bed when you pull the sheets off to wash. They also make great pocket rosaries (or purse rosaries) for the same reason -- unbreakable.

 This twine is a mix of blues. I'll giveaway two rosaries made with this twine and two made in a green/blue mix.

Each will have a Sorrowful Mother medal attached at the center knot.

To enter the giveaway, leave your name in the comment box, or send me an email -- marydevotions@gmail.com. Make sure you leave me a way to contact you if you win.

I'll pick a name next Saturday -- the last day of October, at noon. 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Thursday Daybook

"The LORD is good to those who trust in him, 
                      to the one that seeks him"
                                                                  Lamentations 3:25

In the garden...
...gold and red and orange and green. The trees all around the house are beautiful. We are just about at our peak color right now and it hasn't rained in weeks, so most of the trees are full of colorful leaves. I'd give my left arm for a rainy day, though. You know I love my rainy days. And some rain would make it a lot easier to get some spring bulbs in the ground.

I'm thinking about...
...blogging, but never actually doing it. I think this was the longest hiatus I've had since I started blogging over eight years ago. It wasn't intentional, but school (and my daughter) has been kicking my behind this fall. I could say a lot more, but I better stop with just that.

I am wearing...
...a denim skirt and an orange v-neck t-shirt. It's Indian summer around here. I even have sandals on.

I am reading....
...A Fall of Marigolds. I am almost finished. I've enjoyed this book, though it's taken me a while to finish it. 

I had a revelation of sorts while I was reading it, though it had nothing to do with the book. I have a "guilt for pleasure" habit.  I have a really difficult time just sitting and reading. It's worse than difficult -- it's virtually impossible. I can't just sit and watch a movie or tv either. I can't just sit and not do anything. I have to have busy hands or I feel guilty. I'm not certain when I became this way, but it's a really bad habit I need to break. 

I am creating...
...a layette of hand knits. I think I mentioned this project several months ago, but I'm still working on it. I have two sweaters, booties, a hat and bib finished in three of the colors (pink, white and wisteria purple). I am working on the ivory set now, and I so regret agreeing to do it. No more commissioned hand knits. EVER. I am being paid pennies by the hour, and in all honesty, there is not an amount of money I would agree to in order to do this again. 

I haven't made a rosary in months. Nothing for sheer pleasure. It's depressing. Let's not talk about it.

I will talk about creating some twine rosaries to give away. Check back this weekend and we'll talk about a giveaway for the month of October -- the month of the rosary.

In the kitchen...
...lots of meals, but nothing really worth writing about. The kids are still coming every Sunday, but I'm wearing myself out making huge Sunday dinners and dessert. I think we need to throw in a couple of dinners out every few months. This Sunday is Geoffrey's 26th birthday -- his golden year, 26 on the 26th. We're having Asian ribs on the grill, rice and sweet and spicy sesame green beans, all at his request, with Better Than Everything cake for dessert.

At the school table...
...see above comment. No more on this subject.

Around the house...
...lots of laundry, as usual. I have a hard time this time of year because you might put one thing on in the morning and get hot by three and need to change. Seems like the loads pile up quicker. Everything is fairly clean, just don't come over with white gloves. ;-)

Plans for the rest of the week...
...well, there's not much to the rest of the week, is there? I have a chiropractor appointment tomorrow (more on that another day), and I'd like to get out on Saturday to get some nature pics. Noah took the one up top at Dawes Arboretum last weekend. I think he's pretty good. I'm going to frame that one.

A few of my favorite things...
...chilly nights
...longer evenings
...fresh apples
...pumpkin desserts

Prayers sent heavenward...
...for my husband and children, to do God's will every day
...for all priests and religious
...all babies whose mothers are contemplating abortion, for a change of heart
...for friends who have asked for prayers

Remember to pop back over the weekend for a rosary giveaway.

Wednesday, September 09, 2015

Baby Hat Yarn Along

When I knit what I consider to be a complicated pattern, I like to knit it again, just to make sure I get two identical items. When my kids are doing math I tell them if they are not sure they are doing it right, do it until you get the same answer twice. I guess that's what knitting the same hat twice is.

This wasn't a really complicated pattern, but it was different enough from what I'm used to that I wasn't sure. I also think the pattern was written in a way that made me question myself -- especially about the short rows, because I have never knit them the way they were knit for this pattern. They turned out identical, though, so I guess its all good. 

They are both for my shop, but only the vinca-colored one is there so far. And now that I have this huge layette to knit, that's all that will be there for a while.

My book is A Fall of Marigolds, and it's the first actual paper book I've read for myself in quite a while (I'm embarrassed to admit). I just started it this week, though, so no opinions yet.

Pop over to Ginny's to see what everyone else is knitting and reading.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

First day

Well, it took getting back to a normal schedule to snap me out of my chaos. Rather than lazing around the house during my last two weeks of summer, I've been crazy busy. Just when I thought I'd have all my projects just about wrapped up for the start of school, I was commissioned for a huge knitting job. I've never been hired for knitting, so I'm not sure how this is all going to work out, but a woman down south asked if she could pay me to knit her granddaughter (due December 30) a layette of two sweaters, a hat, booties, and bib in four colors to match gowns she is having smocked by a friend down south. It took me a day to work out all the details, but now I have ordered the yarn and I am speed knitting a sweater for my cousin's little girl, Margot, so that when the yarn arrives I can get started. In the meantime I have other jobs to get in the mail. Busy, busy, busy.

Today is the first day of school, so I thought I better get back to the blog. I can't believe it's been vacant for over two weeks.

Miss Faith this morning with her Schultüte

It's hard to believe Faith is in eighth grade. When the boys were homeschooled, we always had a goal. We always knew we wanted them to go to St. Charles. They all made it there; they all graduated. Our city does not have an all-girls Catholic high school, but when Faith was born we were certain by the time she was 14, we would have one. The bishop will not support an all-girls school, but twice since she was little, groups of parents have tried to pull one together. It's never been successful, so we don't have an all-girls Catholic choice. I am a staunch advocate for same-sex education, and without that choice we have some decisions to make. Faith wants to stay home for high school, though I have never really wanted to homeschool high school. She wants to dance a lot more than she would be able to if she was in school, and if she starts to teach (our studio has an apprentice program) she would really be limiting herself by attending school. Yet, it's not entirely her decision. We have a good Catholic high school, though it's not geographically our high school, so she'd have to be released from our high school and travel farther to attend the high school we prefer. 

So, big decisions ahead. If only we could see the future, right? This year will be a test year. I had a heart-to-heart (or maybe more tête-à-tête with more banging involved) with Faith and told her that if she wants to stay home for high school then she is going to have to really buckle down in school and show me that she is capable of working independently and diligently, as well as in dance. 

Say a prayer for me, would you?