Children of the Kingdom

“I just don’t like all the shirts and clothes that are out now that say things like ‘princess’ and ‘spoiled’ and stuff.”

I overheard a conversation a while back where one mother was lamenting to another about the graphic apparel that’s out now for babies and children. There are so many things that say “spoiled brat,” “I get what I want,” “little princess,” and the like.

Overhearing this comment got me thinking: what’s my opinion on the matter? (I truly hadn’t given it too much thought up until this point.) But, since I have a several nieces and nephews now (including the blessing of TWO of them being our godchildren) and a ton of friends with small children, I want to make sure that I’m providing the best example of Christian living. (At least, that’s the hope.)

Immediately, I first thought, “I agree – these hardly seems like attributes you want to accredit your child” (especially if they’re wearing “spoiled brat” while having another meltdown in public – not helping the cause, mamí). But, then I started to reevaluate my thoughts. Okay, so ‘spoiled brat’ isn’t exactly promoting the Christian virtue of generosity and humility, but what about calling a little one ‘prince’ or ‘princess’?

For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God … and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ if only we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

Romans 8: 14, 17

For a child is born to us, a son is given to us; upon his shoulder dominion rests. They name him Wonder-Counselor, God-Hero, Father-Forever, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:5

St. Paul tells us that we are not only brothers and sisters in Christ but also brothers and sisters OF Christ. And, Isaiah references the coming of the Christ-child as the PRINCE of Peace. So, if we are children of God and joint heirs with Christ (His brothers and sisters) and He is the Prince of Peace, then wouldn’t this make us princes and princesses?

I absolutely love how Sheila Walsh has taken this to heart. She has capitalized on the secular focus of the term and reclaimed it for Christ as she created a whole children’s series based on this same logic. Her books star a fictional little girl, Gigi, God’s Little Princess, who isn’t always perfect, but she is taught by her parents that she is loved as a daughter of God, through it all. And, so as to not leave the boys out, she has a wonderful series for boys, too, called, “Will, God’s Mighty Warrior.” You can bet that these books will be coming around more often in our family soon – the stories are wholesome and the illustrations are superb. (No, I’m not getting paid for this promo – I really am just a fan.)

Anyway, so the next time I’m walking through the baby section in Target (which if you know me at all, you know this will be more than likely sometime within the next 24-48 hours), I might just be picking up a little “princess” sleeper (or two …) for one of the many sweet little girls (and princesses) in my life.

Big thanks to Sheila Walsh for her work. (Also, bonus is that she currently lives in Frisco – who knew?!)

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All Saints’ Day Recipes

So, All Saints’ Day (November 1) and All Souls’ Day (November 2) are coming up, and I wanted to include some easy ideas that can be made at home to help celebrate a beautiful feast day on our Catholic tradition. It took some browsing, but I eventually found the following:

Holy Ghosts cookies

  • Nutter Butter cookies
  • almond bark (or white chocolate chips)
  • mini chocolate chips
  1. Melt the almond bark (or white chocolate chips) in a large bowl.
  2. Take the Nutter Butter cookies and dip them in melted almond bark.
  3. Use mini chocolate chips for the eyes. Let set on waxed paper.

Heavenly haystacks (to celebrate St. Isidore the farmer)

  • 1 large can of Chow Mein Noodles
  • 1 pkg Butterscotch morsels (melted)
  • 1/2 c peanuts
  1. Combine the can of chow mein noodles with the package of melted butterscotch morsels and peanuts.
  2. Drop into small haystacks on wax paper and let set.

Rose cupcakes (to celebrate St. Therese, the little flower)

  • 12 mini cupcakes (or as many as you want – bake as directed)
  • white frosting
  • scissors
  • 6 rolls of Fruit by the Foot (cherry or strawberry)
  • 1 roll of Fruit by the Foot (green)
  1. Bake cupcakes as directed and allow to cool.
  2. Frost cupcakes with white frosting.
  3. To make a rose, unroll a piece of the cherry or strawberry fruit leather and divide it in half along the wavy perforated middle line. (Note: If their isn’t a wavy perforated middle line, cut your own with either a pizza cutter or scissors.) 
  4. Take one of the halves and roll up about 5 inches to form the flower’s center.
  5. Set the rolled strip wavy side up in the middle of a cupcake.
  6. Continue to loosely wrap the remaining fruit leather around the center at a slight angle until the flower is completed.
  7. Cut leaf shapes from the wavy edge of the green strip, then tuck the leaves under the roses.

Soul cakes

A little history on this recipe/custom, first. Did you know that “trick-or-treating” actually began with Catholic children going around on “All Hallow’s Eve” (now known as “Halloween”) and asking for “soul cakes”? In return for the food, the children promised to pray for the deceased members of the household. Here are a couple of rhymes that the children sang as they went along their way:

“A soul cake, a soul cake,
Have mercy on all Christian souls for a soul cake.”

“Soul, soul, an apple or two,
If you haven’t an apple, a pear will do,
One for Peter, two for Paul,
Three for the Man Who made us all.”

“Soul! soul! for a soul-cake!
I pray, good misses a soul-cake–
An apple or pear, a plum or a cherry,
Any good thing to make us merry,
One for Peter, two for Paul,
Three for Him who made us all.”

  • 1 c butter
  • 3 3/4 c flour
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp cider vinegar
  • 6 tbs milk
  • powdered sugar, to sprinkle on top
  1. Using a pastry blender cut 1 c. of butter into 3 3/4 cups of flour.
  2. Blend in the sugar, nutmeg, ginger, cinnamon and allspice.
  3. In a separate bowl beat eggs, vinegar and milk together.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix.
  5. Kneed thoroughly to form a stiff dough.
  6. Roll out to a 1/4 inch thickness and cut out 3 inch circles with a cookie cutter or glass.
  7. Place on a baking sheet and bake at 350 for 20 minutes.
  8. Sprinkle with powdered sugar while still warm.

Also, don’t forget to thank God for and honor our Church Triumphant members by celebrating Mass this Tuesday!

Big thanks to Catholic Cuisine and Catholic Missionary Family for the recipes.

Mass Journal

I first heard about this idea from a CD by Matthew Kelly (from Lighthouse Catholic Media), titled: Our Lives Change When Our Habits Change.

Basically, he suggests that instead of complaining about what went wrong during Mass or why you couldn’t focus, bring a journal and take notes. Allow the Holy Spirit to move in and through you, and you’ll find that you learn a lot more than you think during Mass (even with the off-key singer or the screaming child … lol – even if it’s YOUR screaming child … )

Here’s a link to some printable pages to get you started (dated from now until the end of January): Mass Journal printables.

Or, you can order an “official” Mass Journal through Matthew Kelly’s website for free. I might suggest also, if you’re being serious about this, to get a super cute journal from Target, Walmart, Barnes & Noble, or the like. I’m always much more inspired to write if I have something I like to write in. (And, while you’re at it, bring your favorite pens!)

Start the change today.

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