Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Messages of Our Popes, Lost in Peter's Tomb

I saw both of these on Facebook recently and thought they were perfect to share here!
I have no idea where they originated but I agree with them completely!

Three Popes together

Blessed JPII, pray for us!


I was also very excited to receive in the mail this book from Chris at Campfires and Cleats.  She was giving away two Papal books for her blogoversary and I was the lucky recipient of this one.  My son has already begun reading it and I plan to read it after he's done.  Thank you Chris!

Lost in Peter's Tomb: Adventures with Sister Philomena, Special Agent to the Pope

It's the first book of the Adventures with Sister Philomena: Special Agent for the Pope.  The back cover says "the children learn about St. Peter, explore the Vatican Gardens, follow a mischievous white cat, make friends with a Swiss Guard, discover the grandeur of St. Peter's Basilica, and fall upon the mystery of Peter's tomb and relics.  Sounds unique and interesting.  


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Holy Crocodile! Book Review

Stories of Saints and the Animals Who Helped Them by Caroline Cory. Obviously it's a book geared towards children but even as an adult, I found it interesting.  This book was sent to me by the Catholic Company Reviewer Program.  The stories in Holy Crocodile! originate from ancient legends of saints who were helped by animals to serve God's purpose.   Ms. Cory had first learned of the story of St. Roch and his dog; it so entertained her that she went on an internet search to discover additional stories of animals who helped saints.  Not saints who cared for animals but in all of these stories, the saint was the one in need of help.

In her search, she came up with 19 more unique and entertaining legends to be compiled into her book.  The illustrations are bright and vibrant which are also drawn by Ms. Cory.  She is both author and illustrator of her book.  The majority of the mentioned saints, were new to me such as St. Pachome and St. Cuthbert. One familiar saint is St. Brigid of Ireland who is well known.  However, I had not heard the legend about her and the fox.  The same could be said for St. Clare of Assisi.  I'm familiar with her story but not her special relationship with her cat.  Lots of tid bits of entertaining trivia that will captivate a young child's imagination.  In our day and age of science fiction and fairy tales, this is a wholesome book for young children.  If you're tired of secular books such as Barbie and Flat Stanley,  I think young children will springboard off of these stories and have hours of imaginary role playing fun!  It is not meant to teach your child about the saint but rather to entertain your child on the perspective that God can use all creatures for his own purpose.  If you are looking for a saint biography, this is not the book for you.

My review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company. I was given a complimentary copy of Holy Crocodile! for my honest review.  No monetary compensation was given.  Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on Holy Crocodile! The Catholic Company is the best resource for all your seasonal needs such as First Communion Gifts as well as ideas and gifts for the special papal Year of Faith.


Monday, March 25, 2013

St. Patrick's Jello

I found this fun idea to make Shamrock shaped jello snacks on Pininterest and I pursued it at Mommy I'm Hungry!


Put the above three ingredients together, use this:

 and you will get this:

Here's a level view showing how the whipped cream rises to the top:

The recipe is simple:
Layered Jello Knox Blocks
from Group Recipes

4 envelopes Knox unflavored gelatin
3 pkgs (3oz) Lime Jello
3 Cups boiling water
1/2 pt whipping cream

In large heatproof bowl mix unflavored gelatin with Jello.
Add boiling water and stir until gelatin is completely dissolved -- about a minute or so.
Stir in whipping cream.
Pour into a 13x9 inch pan, cover and chill until firm, about four hours or overnight.
The cream will rise during chilling to form a top layer.
To serve, cut into squares or rectangles of desired cookie cutter shapes and size for finger food treats. Place each piece between cut wax paper, and keep chilled until serving.

This can be done with any flavor and cookie cutter.  It was a fun and good treat for kids and adults alike!

I've linked up with Try a New Recipe by Home to 4 Kiddos.  There are many recipe posts to check out.  Thank you Lisa for your link up party!  Another new one for me is In and Out of the Kitchen by Feeding Big and More.  Thank you Cynthia and Dawn!


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Prayer for Palm Sunday, Sunday Snippets

Palm Sunday Prayer

Almighty and everliving God,
in your tender love towards us
you sent your Son to take our nature upon him,
and to suffer death upon the cross;
grant that we may follow the example
of his great humility
and share in his glorious resurrection:
through him who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God now and for ever.

Found this at Our Catholic Prayers.

I am linking up this with RAnn at Sunday Snippets--A Catholic Carnival.

Thank you RAnn for bringing us all together!


Friday, March 22, 2013

Easter Symbol Bag

I read over on Charlotte's Waltzing Matilda blog how she had created a cute Easter Symbol booklet that outlines the meaning of each symbol.  I also read her post where she made all of her Easter Symbols herself.  A.M.A.Z.I.N.G!  I then read over on Jessica's Shower of Roses blog the sweet candy she made of each symbol.  The majority of them hand crafted in candy molds with different colors. UNBELIEVABLE these ladies are! Among their many talents, they are  candy artisans too!  
Thank you Charlotte and Jessica for my inspiration!

I knew my attempt at creating these candy symbols myself would be futile.  

So instead, I looked around on the internet and found some great ideas from Lacy at Catholic Icing.  
Thank you Lacy!

The rest I found at Walgreen's for either 50 cents or $1.  I was unable to come up with alternatives for each symbol listed over at Charlotte's or Jessica's blogs but I did what I could.  
And was happy with my result.  
I also found the chocolate praying hands and included them in the symbols.  
I told my students that the hands are a symbol of us in prayer of thanksgiving to Jesus.

Here is what I put in my students Easter bags with an explanation sheet of what each symbol meant.
Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures of my symbols so I found pictures online to show you.

Palmer Little Pals - 36 ct

Hollow Eggs with Novelty






Catholic Icing


Chocolate Praying  Hands with a Religious Easter Card Attached
This was a fun and educational project to do with my students.  My fellow Catholic bloggers have been a blessing to my students once again!


Monday, March 18, 2013

Easter Lesson Plan

I have found so many wonderful ideas and ways to teach about Easter that it 
gets hard to choose at times, what to do!  
This was my last class before Easter and I wanted to impress the importance of the Passion of Jesus and His Resurrection on my students.  
I wanted them to remember His Suffering and Death and His Glorious Resurrection this coming Holy Week.  And not focus so much on Easter eggs and the Easter Bunny. 
I think through our activities, they walked away with a basic understanding.
At least, I pray they did.
Here is our prayer table.  I kept the crown of thorns and purple cloth since we focused on Holy Week as well as Easter.  We will change our cloth when we return in a couple of weeks.

The St. Joseph trading card (which I left in a shape of a bookmark) came from That Resource Site.
I found both books at my local library, they are Legend of the Dogwood by Brenda Gough

Legend of the Dogwood

& Father and Son:  A Nativity Story
(it talks more the role St. Joseph played in raising Jesus).

Father and Son

I have an active group of first graders who enjoy games so I started them out with a 
Stations of the Cross Scavenger Hunt.
I had 14 items that represented each station partially hidden around the room and
 sent them off to find them.
Here is an example of the one I used from Holly at Three Sided Wheel blog.  I didn't have on hand
all the items she mentioned so I changed a few of them.
You should check out her blog for many great Lenten Activities!

I downloaded a picture of  Michelangelo's Pieta &

the Shroud of Turin.  
My printer was acting up and the pictures turned out discolored :(
I'll be needing a new printer, I think.

Here is a picture of all of my Scavenger Hunt Items:

Once my students found all of the items, we put them back in my green container (Holly has a much cuter labeled container!) And gathered together in a circle.

I used Jennifer from Family in Feast and Feria blog's colored Stations of the Cross printable.
She kindly offers them to her readers for free and so much more to celebrate Lent.
Go check out her blog HERE.  Thank you Jennifer!

Here's a better view.  They're really beautiful!

What we did was I announced a station and read what it was.  Then I asked one student to find the symbol in the box and try to explain it's purpose.
They each were able to look at the picture and handle the symbol.
This was a very hands on meaningful way for the children to learn the Way of the Cross.

Then just a couple of days ago, I found this super cute Resurrection craft from Jen at Enter Under My Roof blog.  I didn't have the needed felt so we created ours from cardstock.  Not quite as cute as Jen's but it did turn out nicely.  Here is my sample:
(it doesn't show clearly in the picture but I lightly shaded the tomb with a grey colored pencil.)

The tomb opens up to reveal a stained glass announcement of 
"He is Risen!"

I pre-cut many different rectangular colored shapes for my students to pick and choose from.
The idea is to make it look like stained glass.
Jen's stands out really good with the felt, but this worked cute.

 Jen has a great step by step explanation on how to make her craft out of felt.
You can see it HERE.  Thank you Jen!

I also found a really nice coloring page of St. Joseph at Sanctus Simplicitus.
Thank you CeAnne!

I sent home a bag of Easter Symbols as a small gift to my students.
But this is long enough, so I'll make that post in a day or two.

Thank you to HollyJenCeAnne and That Resource Site for sharing all of your talents and creativity with the rest of us!  I often wish that I could learn how to create my own activities and share them with others, but I don't have the skill set to do so.  And yet there are so many wonderful sharing Catholic bloggers out there that I don't have to re-invent the wheel!

I've shared this post at Jennifer's Lenten Link Up at Catholic Inspired.


Sunday, March 17, 2013

Sunday Snippets--A Catholic Carnival

I am linking up this week with RAnn over at This That and the Other Thing.  Every week she gathers up Catholic bloggers to share their favorite posts with each other.  Please come over and check out her blog as well as the other bloggers!

I am sharing:
Lent and St. Patrick Lesson
Novena to St. Joseph and
the video Habemus Papam!

Thank you RAnn for hosting us this week!

St. Patrick, pray for us!


Happy St. Patrick's Day!


May the Strength of God pilot us. 
May the Power of God preserve us.
May the Wisdom of God instruct us.
May the Hand of God protect us.
May the Way of God direct us.
May the Shield of God defend us.
May the Host of God guard us.
Against the snares of the evil ones.
Against temptations of the world 

May Christ be with us!
May Christ be before us!
May Christ be in us,
Christ be over all!
May Thy Salvation, Lord,
Always be ours,
This day, O Lord, and evermore. 

For more information about this popular saint, please go HERE.

St. Patrick, pray for us!


Thursday, March 14, 2013

Campfire and Cleats Giveaway

Chris from Campfires and Cleats is hosting a giveaway for her blogoversary! 
 Head on over their for a chance to win one of these books:


It ends this Sunday, March 17th so hurry on over there to enter.

Thank you Chris for hosting your giveaway! 


Habemus Papam

May God bless Pope Francis, our New Shepard to lead us!


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Novena to St. Joseph Starts Today


Saint Joseph, I, your unworthy child, greet you. You are the faithful protector and intercessor of all who love and venerate you. You know that I have special confidence in you and that, after Jesus and Mary, I place all my hope of salvation in you, for you are especially powerful with God and will never abandon your faithful servants. Therefore I humbly invoke you and commend myself, with all who are dear to me and all that belong to me, to your intercession. I beg of you, by your love for Jesus and Mary, not to abandon me during life and to assist me at the hour of my death.

Glorious Saint Joseph, spouse of the Immaculate Virgin, obtain for me a pure, humble, charitable mind, and perfect resignation to the divine Will. Be my guide, my father, and my model through life that I may merit to die as you did in the arms of Jesus and Mary.

Loving Saint Joseph, faithful follower of Jesus Christ, I raise my heart to you to implore your powerful intercession in obtaining from the Divine Heart of Jesus all the graces necessary for my spiritual and temporal welfare, particularly the grace of a happy death, and the special grace I now implore:

(Mention your request).

Guardian of the Word Incarnate, I feel confident that your prayers in my behalf will be graciously heard before the throne of God.

Go to EWTN for each day's devotion.  It starts today and ends on his feast day, March 19th.

St. Joseph, foster father of Jesus, pray for us!


Lent and St. Patrick Lesson Plan

Today I had a rather ambitious project and fortunately, I had another teacher come in and help during it!  I decided to have my students make Erin's Easter Wreath that she offers for free to her readers at Wee Little Miracles.  It goes from Palm Sunday to Pentecost and each event has scripture verses printed on an Easter egg shape.  It's so cute and educational for it has the main events of the Passion of Jesus, His Resurrection and Ascension; and then Pentecost.  It's all in one place on a cute wreath for my students to hang in their homes.  Each time they walk by it, they can remember the sacrifice Jesus made for them....for us.

My sample copy was placed on our prayer table.  
It was propped up by Saint Ciaran and St. Patrick.

Here's a close up of the Easter wreath.  It's perfect for young children with pictures and scripture to tell the real story of the last week of Jesus' life on earth up until Pentecost.

I also used Jessica's St. Patrick free printables to attach to chocolate gold coins.  
You can find them at Catholic Cuisine.  Thank you Jessica!  
Holly also has cute ones that she made over at
Three Sided Wheel Blog.  Thank you Holly!

Aren't they cute?  I didn't get a picture of Holly's but hers are really sweet too.
I tend to make a few extra because a few older siblings of my students tend to stop by our
classroom to see if I have any extras!

I tried to take a side view to show the different colors of the chocolate coins.  
At this time of the year, you can get the chocolate coins in many colors over at Party City.  
They are 10 cents each!  I used gold, green and orange.

But I bought a few more in dark and light blue that I used a few weeks ago, as the coins 
that Judas' accepted to betray Jesus.

The lighting was bad but the colors are such fun!  Party City also had them in pinks and purples.  
Very colorful and fun!

Then, I went to CeAnne's blog, Sanctus Simplicitus and downloaded her St. Patrick's bookmarks.

 She has many great ideas and resources on how to celebrate this popular saint.
When I told my students that St. Patrick was a real man that loved Jesus and lived a long time ago,
they were shocked.  
They were thinking he was a leprechaun!

Even though St. Ciaran's feast day is in September, he knew St. Patrick
and is considered the first Irish Saint.

The library has a few good books about the real man, St. Patrick.  Here are the ones I found:

By Joyce Denham

                                                                             By Ann Tompert


By Joyce Denham

St. Patrick, pray for us!
Last year, I made THIS CRAFT with my students to celebrate St. Patrick's Day and explain the Holy Trinity.

I linked up with Jennifer at Catholic Inspired Lenten Link Up.  Come on over and see what other bloggers are doing to celebrate Lent!