Sunday, May 21, 2017

Our Godson's Baptism and Pregnancy Blessings

"Baptism is the sacrament that gives our souls the new life of sanctifying grace by which we become Christians, children of God, and heirs of heaven." ~ My Catholic Faith

We ended up being able to deliver that Spiritual Bouquet to JOY{filled}family in person and hold our darling (two-day old) Godson during his baptism on May 10th! I didn't think it was going to be possible, between my husband camping over at the coast with our five older children May 7th-9th (for our older boys' High School Regional Golf Tournament) and my own pregnancy complications and challenges, but Sean was able to take another day off work and my doctors said the long 11-12+ hour round trip drive would be ok, as long as we stopped every 1-2 hours to walk and stretch. It was such a beautiful day filled with so many blessings!



Loving God, Creator of all good things, thank You for the gift of life given to our Godson. What a privilege it was for us to stand as witnesses for the Church when our Godson was washed in baptismal waters. Lord, help us to be faithful to You all the days of our lives. 

As our Godson grows in age and faith, enable us to be a good example for him of how to live as a follower of Jesus. Through our love and concern, in moments of joy and sorrow, allow us to reveal Your loving face, O God. We pray this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

After the baptism I was able to receive the Blessing of an Expectant Mother and our baby girl and I were also blessed with a relic of St. Gerard by this faithful and holy priest.

Deo Gratias! 

Monday, May 15, 2017

The King's Prey: Saint Dymphna of Ireland {Sponsored Giveaway}

Happy Feast of St. Dymphna!

To celebrate her feast this year I wanted to introduce you all to the brand new book that has just been written and released by author Susan Peek about this holy saint and give away a copy to one of my visitors!

During our correspondence the author shared:

"I really, really feel Saint Dymphna needs to be known in this day and age of such widespread depression and stress. She is the patron saint of so many things: mental illness, emotional disorders, depression, nervous ailments, autism, intellectually handicapped, runaways, victims of family and sexual violence, the list goes on and on. So I would love to spread devotion to her in my own little way. I timed the book to release in time for her feast day, so now I just have to get the word out there!"

Let's help her spread the word and increase devotion to this little-known Irish princess saint! 

This new addition to the God's Forgotten Friends series recently received the following endorsement from The National Shrine of St. Dymphna in Ohio:

"I work at the Shrine of St Dymphna. The King's Prey is great. A very good story. True to the facts, with excitement to thrill the young. I am looking forward to selling it at our gift shop."

An insane king. His fleeing daughter. Estranged brothers, with a scarred past, risking everything to save her from a fate worse than death. Toss in a holy priest and a lovable wolfhound, and get ready for a wild race across Ireland. Will Dymphna escape her deranged father and his sinful desires?

For the first time ever, the story of Saint Dymphna is brought to life in this dramatic novel for older teens. With raw adventure, gripping action, and even humor in the midst of dark mental turmoil, Susan Peek's newest novel will introduce you to a saint you will love forever! Teenage girls will see that Dymphna was just like them, a real girl, while young men will thrill at the heart-stopping danger and meet heroes they can easily relate to. If ever a Heavenly friend was needed in these times of widespread depression and emotional instability, this forgotten Irish saint is it!

(Ages 16 and up for mature themes.)

I have really enjoyed reading some of the other titles in the series and am looking forward to reading The King's Prey: Saint Dymphna of Ireland this summer, learning more about Saint Dymphna, and possibly sharing it with our teens once they are a little older and ready for the mature themes.

In addition to The King's Prey: Saint Dymphna of Ireland, Susan Peek has also written Saint Magnus, The Last Viking (the first volume in her series God's Forgotten Friends: Lives of Little-known Saints, which was awarded the Catholic Writers’ Guild Seal of Approval in June 2015!)A Soldier Surrenders: The Conversion of Saint Camillus de Lellis (recommend for ages 15 and up), and Crusader King: A Novel of Baldwin IV and the Crusades (which made it onto the list of the Top 50 Most Popular Homeschooling Books in 2013).

She has also written a number of great Catholic books for children including Animals of God Volume 1 and Volume 2 as well as the titles in her God's Forgotten Friends: Little-known Saints for Children series: Small for the Glory of God: Saint John the Dwarf, The Man God Kept Surprising: Saint William of Bourges, and The Forgotten Christmas Saint: Saint Anastasia.

You can visit Susan Peek's website for more information and to sign up for her newsletter.

Please enter the giveaway using the Rafflecopter Box below:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Saint Dymphna, great wonder-worker in every affliction of mind and body, I humbly implore your powerful intercession with Jesus through Mary, the Health of the Sick, in my present need. (Mention it.) Saint Dymphna, martyr of purity, patroness of those who suffer with nervous and mental afflictions, beloved child of Jesus and Mary, pray to Them for me and obtain my request.

(Pray one Our Father, one Hail Mary and one Glory Be.)

Saint Dymphna, Virgin and Martyr, pray for us.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Congratulations JOY{filled} Family

All is well! Our sweet baby was born on May 8 at 2:01pm. 
I'm recovering now that I'm over the major nausea hurdle (8hrs). 
So much gratitude goes out to my spiritual benefactors. 
Deo gratias! 

Thank you to everyone who has been praying. You all are amazing! 
Together we were able to send a spiritual bouquet including (at least!)...

1,089 Our Fathers
9,659 Hail Marys
1,087 Glory Be's

... plus a couple extra Mass intentions and a few candles lit at churches! 
May God reward you all for your prayers and kindness!  

There is still time to contribute to the virtual shower gift (a new DockATot) for the baby as well.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Easter Baskets On Easter Sunday

I always look forward to filling our children's Easter baskets each year with books and gifts that incorporate our beautiful Catholic faith! I also love incorporating the various Easter Symbols and filling a basket with various gifts for the whole family to enjoy. You can read more about the various Easter Symbols here and find many gift ideas here.  Easter Sunday has already passed this year, but perhaps this post will give you some gift ideas for upcoming sacraments, birthdays, or even next Easter!

.: This Year's Easter Symbols Basket for the Family :.

Cross: Wooden Apple Tree 
Lamb: Wooden Ram and Lamb
Lily: A Seed is Sleepy and Flower Grow Kit (a prize I won at a recent baby shower)
Egg: An Egg is Quiet and Chocolate Eggs from Trader Joe's
Peacock: Wooden Peacocks

I didn't put much thought or planning into this basket ahead of time this year but it still managed to come together. Some of the gifts were a bit of a stretch (for example the wooden tree for "cross"), but it was a fun little scavenger hunt for the children to figure out which gift(s) represented which symbol! 

All of the wooden animals and figures came from The Wooden Wagon. Like all hand carved wooden toys, they aren't cheap, but I did get a discount on them using a promo code they sent out in January. We started our children's collection last year on their birthdays and Christmas and look forward to adding to it little by little over time. Our five year old plays with all of his wooden animals on a daily basis. Wish I would have started collecting these years ago to go along with the rest of our wooden blocks and saint dolls!

.: Captain - Age 16:. 

This year, in addition to their books, all of our older children were excited to receive Catholic and/or Pro-Life T-shirts which we had ordered from a couple different online websites along with new missal or bible covers from purchased with that credit I mentioned in yesterday's post. I don't think a day has passed when I haven't seen at least one of the t-shirts on one of our children. The older boys had gotten a couple Catholic T-shirts last year as well, along with some fun t-shirts for Christmas, so I knew they'd love them. They are also really enjoying their subscription to the Catholic T-Shirt Club!

.: Ranger - Age 15 :.

.: Twinkle Toes - Age 13 :. 

.: Chiquita - Age 11 :.

Note: She loved all four of her books and had read them by the end of the week following Easter Sunday... Her comment after reading 32 Days: A Story of Faith and Courage? "It was SOOOOO good, but I wept BUCKETS!" 

.: Snuggles - Age 9 :. 

.: Rose - Age 7 :. 

Rose's St. Therese Themed Easter Basket: 

The beautiful handmade fabric St. Therese Doll was from The Little Rose Shop. I originally ordered three including St. Catherine of Alexandria and St. Lucia for Rose's older sisters. They received theirs this past year and I meant to give this one to Rose last October or December, but I completely forgot... I didn't want to wait until the feast of St. Therese this upcoming October, so she was sitting next to Rose's Easter basket on Easter Sunday. She was so excited and has been carrying her around every morning since!

.: Bud - Age 5 :. 

Last year (March 2016) I had ordered four (two sets of two) Miniature Birettas from Michele Quigley to go along with all his wooden saint dolls. I kept forgetting to give them to him but they finally made it into this year's Easter basket! He placed on on St. Florian but then decided he needed a more appropriate saint (St. Florian was a soldier, not a priest) and so he ran over to get St. John Paul II.

You can scroll through all past Easter Basket posts here including pictures from Easter morning 2014201320122011, and 2010
Maybe someday I'll get back around to posting pictures from the past couple years...

Alleluia! He is Risen! 

Sunday, May 7, 2017

A First Holy Communion Gift for our Godson

Toady one of our Godsons made his First Holy Communion! It was such a joy and blessing to be able to attend the Mass and watch him receive Our Lord for the first time! 

One of my favorite First Holy Communion gifts to give is the Jesus, Make Me Worthy prayer book. I've shared many prayers from this sweet and inspiring book here on the blog over the years.

To go along with the book I also ordered a customized Missal Cover (with the Adorned Eucharist image) and had our Godson's name embroidered onto the back as well.  I still haven't had a chance to post pictures of this year's Easter baskets, but many of our older children received missal or bible covers this Easter as well, thanks to some trade credit from past advertising combined with commissions from recent apron sales over at Catholic Cuisine! The covers are all gorgeous and I look forward to sharing some pictures of the rest sometime soon. 

The Blessed Sacrament Gift Wrap, Holy Cards, and First Holy Communion Greeting Card all came from an amazing sale over at Trademark Catholic Stationary & Gifts last January! (I couldn't believe the prices... The gift wrap was marked down to just 25 cents a package and I ordered four packages for just $1.00! Thanks again for letting me know, Pam! I wish I would have posted a link here on the blog so you all could have taken advantage of the sale too... I was in the midst of recovering from the flu at the time.) I stocked up and was able to give our girls some beautiful note cards and stationary in their Easter baskets!

The hour for which I longed for has come, and I am to approach (for the first time) the altar of God, to receive the bread of angels, the sacred Body and Blood of Jesus Christ, my Redeemer. Jesus, most merciful, most worthy of love, Thou hast loved me and given Thyself not only to suffering and death, but also to become food for my soul, to remain with me until the end of my life...

- excerpt from First Communion Day Act of Faith in Jesus, Make Me Worthy

Congratulations to our handsome Godson! 

Friday, May 5, 2017

A Spiritual Bouquet and Baby Gift for Lena

A large Bouquet of Roses
Flowers that will never fade
A Novena of Rosaries
With love in each Decade!

Lena over at JOY{filled} family (also on Instagram here and one of my past contributors over at Catholic Cuisine) is preparing to welcome her newest little boy  (baby #8!) on May 8th! If I lived nearby I'd host a baby shower for her, but instead I'm going to try my best to shower her and our soon-to-be newest Godson with prayers!

If you'd like to be included in this spiritual bouquet, please leave me a comment here, over at Instagram, or send me an email by May 7th with the number of rosaries - or Our Fathers, Hail Marys, Glory Be's, if you can't commit to one or more complete rosaries - that you will offer for her and her family and their new baby and I'll include them in this card!

I'm also working on coordinating a group gift to have sent to her family. It's the one new thing she'd love to purchase for this baby! You can find all the details here if you'd like to consider a small contribution towards this gift as well.


Monday, May 1, 2017

Sponsor Love :: Quarterly Update & Current Specials

I am so excited that it is finally May! I'm really looking forward to celebrating sacraments, finishing up our school year, and preparing to welcome our new baby next month!

It's time for another quarterly update on all my amazing sponsors here at Shower of Roses. I also have some great coupon codes to share with you as well!

Please welcome my new sponsors:

Our Catholic faith is an incredible gift. It sustains us and guides us, yet at times during these years of babies and housework, it can be a struggle to FULLY ENGAGE with our faith. What is more, as Catholic Mothers we not only crave a closeness with our God, but we are charged with raising faith-filled children and creating a holy home. We take this work of living and teaching the faith very seriously, but we often forget one very important ingredient: Creativity. I believe that creativity is one of the most powerful ways we can engage with and teach our Catholic Faith. I believe that crafting can be a prayer. I believe that children learn best when given the opportunity to create–and that we should use their creativity to help them fall in love with God and his church. And finally, I believe that anyone, young or old, can create meaningful, beautiful things. Even you. On this site you will find countless ways to live out your faith by engaging your creativity.

This year we have Confirmation cards with the 7 Gifts of the Holy Ghost in English and Spanish and we have also added Divine Mercy image First Holy Communion cards!

I'm actually in the process of working with Carrie to create Holy Cards for our children's past sacraments as well! They will be so excited to have sets of cards to share with their siblings to easily recall the anniversaries of their Baptisms, First Holy Communions, etc, along with the days some of their siblings were born into heaven.

In addition to the Etsy Shop, you can also visit follow Keepsakes by Carrie on Facebook and Instagram for updates

SAVE 15% on orders of $20+ with coupon code: SHOWEROFROSES2017
(Coupon expires on Our Lady's birthday, September 8, 2017.)

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The products are great for building up your faith and evangelizing to your family through the tshirts and sacramentals that are included in each month's box. Each month we send a brand new, exclusive Soft Style Premium Catholic Tshirt, Sacramentals of different sorts (rosaries, scapulars, and more), Holy Cards, and Holy Medals to our subscribers. The shirts are a surprise and will be revealed when you open your box each month. Each month is a new design that we create, so you are sure to receive the latest and best Catholic gear every month!

Our older boys received their first box {an early Confirmation gift!} last month. 

Sign up for the Catholic T-Shirt Club today! You can also follow Catholic T-Shirt Club on Facebook and Instagram

Right now you can save 20% OFF YOUR FIRST MONTH with coupon code: MAMAMARY (Expires 5/14/17)

Also, be sure to check out the brand new Catholic T-shirt Club for kids, aka the Catholic Kids Club!

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Never been such devoted sisters... Ever since we were little we liked to do creative things together and we've always loved to bead and make jewelry. I also wanted to help my sister who has Chronic Lyme Disease. So, making and selling rosaries, Catholic jewelry, & things, will hopefully be a way to help with the cost of her treatments that are not covered by insurance. We take custom orders for rosaries, jewelry, crucifixes, and other Catholic things. Read more here...

You can find all sorts of great products in Aleesa's shop including Cute & Catholic Preschool Printables and Holy Card Printables. I have always especially loved her hand painted candles!

In addition to Aleesa's Etsy Shop, you can also visit her over at Life, Love, & Sacred Art and follow on Facebook and Instagram for updates and new designs!

Aleesa actually met me at my doctor's appointment today and surprised me with this beautiful and thoughtful gift for our new little one. I haven't done much to prepare yet, but we now have diapers and a gorgeous new baptismal candle! She even included a little pillow, scapular, three of her saint holy cards - all of which just so happen to be on our list as possible middle names! - and a St. Gerard medal/necklace for me! As soon as we decide on a name she will add it to the candle. ❤

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A special THANK YOU 
to all my continuing sponsors! 

Prayer Pillowcases
... more than just a pretty place to lay your head! They're a unique way to bring Catholic art and prayer into your home. And a practical way to share the Faith with your family and friends. Our distinctive line combines original art and favorite Catholic prayers that appeal to all ages and transform pillows from the ordinary to the divine! Honor a special occasion or make any occasion special with the gift of a joyful, lasting (and personalizable) Prayer Pillowcase. We're always working on new designs and hope you'll visit again soon to see even more ways to help your loved ones begin and each day with a prayerful heart.

Be sure to check out the First Holy Communion and Confirmation designs. They can all be personalized! 

SAVE 10% off Prayer Pillowcases with coupon code: Roses10 Shipping is always FREE!

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Catholic Child

"Our goal is to help you find the finest resources to help you nurture the faith of your Catholic child and strengthen him or her for the challenges of the journey ahead. Each one of the hundreds of items you find here has been chosen by us with care, reviewed for faith and quality, and has been child and parent approved. When you buy from Catholic Child Catalog you are supporting an independently owned, personally run business that remains committed to searching out products to guide, inspire and delight the young Catholics in your life."

SAVE 15% off storewide at at Catholic Child for the entire month with coupon code: MaryMay15

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American Life League's Culture of Life Studies Program (CLSP) 

The Culture of Life Studies Program has several new one-class lessons on saints, including St. Damien of Molokai whose feast day is May 10. We also have a wonderful lesson on our Blessed Mother, who is honored and revered throughout the month of May. Check out our latest offerings today!

As always, Shower of Roses patrons can get 20% off their entire purchase by entering the code: ROSES20

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An international community of young priests known as The Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter, or "The Fraternity" as they have lovingly been referred to, includes some of today's most skilled and committed singers of Gregorian chant. The community has been preparing to present ancient melodies anew, on the album Requiem, to be released on May 12, 2017 through their new international collaboration with De Montfort Music/Sony Classical...

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Gail's Designs

Gail's Designs has been creating unique, elegant jewelry and cherished rosaries since 2009. Gail has been an artist for most of her life and is grateful for her faith and being able to make elegant jewelry and cherished rosaries for people of the Catholic faith.

In addition to the website, you can also follow Gail's Designs on Facebook and Instagram for updates and new designs!

My favorite Miraculous Medal Earrings from Gail's Designs

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Behold Publications, LLC

"Behold Publications, LLC is more than just a publisher! Family owned and operated since its founding in 1999, we have developed great Catholic clubs like the Little Flowers Girls' Club and Blue Knights Catholic Boys' Clubs for Catholic girls and boys ages 5 and up."

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Regina Martyrum Productions
"Regina Martyrum Productions produces the finest works of Catholic audio theatre. With emphasis on the lives of the Saints, these products are edifying, and entertaining." 

Be sure to subscribe for emails or follow on FacebookTwitterYouTube,  Google+, and Instagram for sales and updates.

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Peanut Butter & Grace
The mission of Peanut Butter & Grace is to help Catholic parents raise children who know and love Christ and his Church. We do this by providing digital and print resources that assist parents in forming their children in the faith within the daily life of their family. All of our products are made for Catholic parents—either to use themselves, or to hand to their kids.

Brand New Release: In the Realm of Mist and Mercy with Lesson Plans

Not only do they offer free shipping on orders of $10 or more, 
a 45-day return policy, and secure payment via Amazon, 
credit card, Paypal, or check...

Right now you can save 25% off your Peanut Butter & Grace order of $20 or more with coupon code: ROSES

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Kolbe Academy 
"Kolbe Academy was founded in 1980 by three families who experienced first-hand the rapid decline of the public school system and who were looking for a wholesome, academically challenging educational environment. The founders anticipated the need to form young Catholic citizens who could effectively defend their Faith through a thorough understanding of doctrine and regular reception of the Sacraments. They also foresaw the growing need for better, more individualized and intensive instruction in basic education. Kolbe Academy Home School became an outgrowth of the day school in 1993 when parents who lived too far away to commute asked for our help with home schooling their children. Recently Kolbe Academy merged with Trinity Grammar and Prep to become Kolbe Academy/Trinity Prep, which educates students from Pre K through high school. With a focus on providing an education that is Ignatian in MethodClassical in Content and Loyal to the Magisterium in a small-class size environment or at home, Kolbe Academy continues to thrive."

In addition to visiting Kolbe Academy's website, you can also check out their online courses and follow them over at Facebook or Twitter for updates and specials! 

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"Give Him 5 Ministries is about falling in love with Jesus! Just as Jesus Christ is the center of our Catholic faith, He is also meant to be the center of our daily lives. Give Him 5 provides people with the encouragement and tools they need to ignite their prayer life and to fall deeply in love with the Lord. Give Him 5 Prayer bags make wonderful gifts."

In addition to visiting the website, you can also follow Give Him 5 over on Facebook and Instagram!

Give Him 5 Mug or Gift Set

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Specializing in high quality veils and mantillas for ladies and girls. Robin is a Catholic mother of 15 ( 7 with Our Lord ) who spends her days serving, loving, praying, and sewing. Robin started making veils for her daughters and wanted to share with others. She truly loves creating veils to serve Our Lord!

Right now you can SAVE 15% off your order with coupon code: IVEIL2017

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Offering Catholic books, 
gifts, homeschool curriculum 
at discount prices!

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Almond Rod Toys

Almond Rod Toys makes Saint Blocks that are just the right size for little hands and can be used for imaginative play, building, stacking or collecting. The front has a print of original watercolor artwork. The back has a quote or a prayer chosen to inspire little ones and the one that cleans up behind them. The saint's name, feast day and patronage are also listed; just enough to be a reminder and an inspiration for further learning.

Visit Almond Roy Toys at Etsy and follow the Facebook page!

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"Et Corde means "open heart". I create rosaries, bracelets and necklaces using the hand wire wrap technique with beautiful antique reproduction medals. I hope that my pieces can be an heirloom that can be passed down in your family." 

SAVE 10% off with coupon code: ROSES10

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Catholic Cuisine Aprons
All of our aprons are embroidered, not screen printed, giving them a rich, elegant, look! Our durable 100% cotton-twill aprons, with soil-release finish for added stain protection, provide ultimate full length cover and comfort.

Visit the Catholic Cuisine Apron page to order! 

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If you are interested in advertising at Shower of Roses

Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to all of my sponsors and visitors for your support! May God bless you all!