Saturday, March 26, 2011


12 years ago today, I walked into the kitchen to find Mary Kate making a mess on the kitchen floor with the play dough. As soon  as I cracked a smile when she looked up at me with her tiny face and blue eyes, my water broke. An instant feeling, physically, mentally, and spiritually flowed throughout my body of great delight and ecstasy. I was going to be a mom again today. I have never had my water break before or after this baby.  I so wish I would. I compare it to death and new life occurring instantly. By mid afternoon, I was holding my baby girl, Samantha. That was not the name of my choice but Roy has wanted a Samantha since he was a child. That was the last name he was allowed to give to any of our babies. lol.
I felt like she was my first girl. Mary Kate is absolutely a girl but she is her own unique individual. There are boys. There are girls. And then there is Mary Kate. With Samantha,  I got to experience the pathetic heart wrenching whimpers, the barrettes and pony tails, and everything pink.
She is my girl that wants to be perfect. She's not a perfectionist. She wants to be perfect as a child of her parents, as a student, as a stranger to others and as a child of God. What a blessing! When you look at her, you will see a body that radiates holiness. From a distance I think every boy will be able to see the dignity that he will have to protect in order to win her heart.  Sunsets are nice but Samantha is beautiful.
Have I over done it? Meet her and you will see that I haven't. Hopefully, this explanation is enough to understand how she treats her brothers and sisters and friends and family without me explaining it. Her future will be grand. She teaches me and the rest of the family every day with the virtues she practices. How I wish I could take credit for this! Believe me, I would take credit in a heartbeat if she were my only child but I have a couple children (BEN!) that discredits me quick. LOL. I must remember that some of our greatest saints were once very great sinners. They are both made of the same stuff. With Samantha being their example, I am not worried.
Samantha is such a Daddy's girl. She blushes when she talks to him on the phone. She tears up at the thought of losing him for another year when he gets the call for active duty half way around the world. Roy just can't say no to her. The feeling is mutual too. She may be spoiled but she has a deep love and appreciation  for all that she's given. Nearly everything she wants is somehow a gift for someone else. "Daddy, please let me go to the campout even though I'm coughing up a lung (I'm adlibbing a bit). I really want to help cook for the kids...and do the service project with the teens..." Or, "Daddy please buy me this cute fish for my aquarium. Josie said its her favorite fish and I want to surprise her." Or, "Mom, please let me spend the night at Emma's. She was sad today and needs me." She's either a generous and loving soul or really knows how to work the system. I prefer to think its the first.

As we were talking about her birthday, the subject came up about her 14th birthday. I told her that her Daddy is going to take her to a fancy restaurant. She is going to dress up and get her hair all dolled up. He is going to take her on a date and show her exactly how she is to be treated by a gentleman and where she will receive her purity ring, hand picked with alot of time and love by her father. I'll probably influence that decision a bit...alot. For now, its time to look forward to her last pre-teen year.
Happy birthday Samantha. Thank you for being you. I love you!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


"Take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may see them...When you give alms, do not blow a trumpet before you...When you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right is doing, so that your almsgiving may be secret. And your Father who sees in secret will repay you...When you fast, do not look gloomy so that you may appear to others to be fasting. Your Father who sees what is hidden will repay you." Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18

I have several practicing and devout Catholics on my Facebook. Recently, I have seen a few status’ about their excitement about the Lent season approaching. I have to admit that I have not shared in their enthusiasm. Who gets excited about suffering? It got me thinking. After the 12 apostles were confirmed on Pentecost, they were no longer timid and scared of suffering and rejection. As a matter of fact, when they were stoned, tortured and kicked out from a town after spreading the Word of God, they were laughing and jumping for joy because they got to suffer in the name of Christ. It may sound odd at first but it actually makes sense. Bringing this closer to home, imagine a bully attacking your sister and then YOU jump in and fight the good fight all for the love of your sister. How will it make you feel after you had suffered your beating? How would it make your sister feel? Yes, its that kind of a feeling. It doesn’t have to be a feeling of triumph. That would be just a bonus. Its that feeling of love that grew between you and your sister. It’s the “You are my hero” feeling.

We can choose to suffer for God at any time of the year. Our family once made a spiritual bouquet for our friends that were in a car accident years ago. We made flowers out of construction paper and taped each one onto a straw. Then we wrote a sacrifice or prayer on each flower. They would say things like, “I will sleep on the floor with no pillow” or “I will pray 3 Divine Mercy Chaplets,” or “I will spend 1 hour in adoration,” or “I will only drink water for 2 days.” Each little bit of suffering can be a prayer if done with the love of God and our neighbor in mind. When we complain or brag about our suffering to others, it turns into a love for ourselves rather then for the good of the one we are praying for.  What my Catholic friends are so excited about is our beloved Catholic faith has given us a scheduled time to suffer in communion with one another. One friends status said, “…it is the time focus on something other than Recess Peanut Butter cups…” Oh, that is SO true. That feeling I get when I see chocolate should be channeled to something…or someone much, much greater. -He will take the "little death" in every act of self-denial and turn it into a shining testimony to his resurrection.-The Word Among Us. Daily Meditations for Lent 

I want to keep my blogs positive but I am still bothered, after a year, about one of my Protestant friends status. On Ash Wednesday, he posted all the indulgences he had eaten that day and a stab at the ridiculous Catholic custom of fasting. I don’t lump him in the category of what every non-Catholic believes but I do hope that he and others with like-minded thinking reads this blog. Catholics who choose to suffer do so, so they can focus on God and not the luxuries of life. Another example is the unintentional suffering…a terminal cancer, a loss of a child, loss of a job. Where to do people turn when they suffer naturally? God, of course. People fall to their knee’s in desperation. The one’s who choose to suffer do the same. I don’t know about you but I would so much rather choose what my suffering is going to be rather then taken by surprise. Are you hearing me God? Please, no surprises!  

The Christy’s have some customs that we like to do every so often. We are not consistent but that's ok. There will be more memories when we change things up. This year, we are coloring a Stations of the Cross book, tearing out the pages and taking advantage of our newly painted and naked walls. We will tape them up and do the Stations right in our own house. We normally go to church on Friday afternoons and participate in theirs or take a short trip to the Franciscan Center in Independence and hike their Stations of the Cross trail. We will have to find time for that. The kids love it. The kids made their own Journey through Lent poster. They color in a stepping stone each day until Easter. We will attend adoration and daily Mass more often, hopefully 3 days a week. I’m getting excited already! Lastly, we have a list on our refrigerator about what each one of us has given up. If we don’t write it down, the kids will be changing their mind based on what their current indulgence is. I know that feeling all too well. What are we giving up? NOT TELLING! It is between me and God and whoever visits and reads it off our refrigeratorJ
Journey through Lent
We made a crown of thorns out of flour, salt & water.
The kids add the "thorns" to represent our sins.
After every good deed that any of us do, we remove a "thorn" to ease Jesus' suffering

Thursday, March 3, 2011

A Day in the Life of the Christy's Part 2

Tuesday morning begins with waking up by 7:30am and wandering around aimlessly trying to remind myself what I do in the morning. More specifically, what do I do on a TUESDAY morning. I remember! I run to Nick and tell him he's late for his breakdancing class! "Get up! Your late!..." If it gets too bad, I begin singing the worst rendition of the Star Spangled Banner to him that makes Rosanne Barr sound REAL good. It wakes up the whole family. I end up with a crowd of sleepy and giggling children as my audience. Even Nick can't stop laughing. Nick and Max are off to dance at Calvary Bible College.
I make breakfast, usually pancakes, french toast or oatmeal while instructing the older children to dress their "buddies" (We do the Duggar family buddy system). I make lunch for Ben and Josie, then promptly leave at 8:30 to drop off kids at their appropriate destinations. Stop #1, drop Theresa off at school. Stop #2, drop Ben and Josie off at Mothers Day Out.  

I'm so proud of Ben! I only got one behavior problem phone call all year. Come on Ben, you only have to make it a couple more months!
Ben is so excited about Mothers Day Out. Josie, not so much

Josie stands in front of her little cubbie that were consequently built by her older brother Nick just 2 years ago

Stop #3, drop Mary Kate off at Grandview HS. Stop #4, pick up Max from dance. Stop #5, home by 10am. Samantha is about finished with Math while school is just beginning for Max. They do Math while I take care of my cute baby, clean and sneak out to pick up Mary Kate at 10:41 on the dot from the HS (she only takes one tutoring class). Mary Kate and I do Audiblox together for about 15 minutes. That is a reading program for kids with special needs. Then, she picks out a Saint DVD from our massive collection and watches that until Nick gets home.  If the other kids finish Math early, they work on independent subjects (Spelling, Latin, Handwriting, Language Arts) . We all do Geography together as soon as Nick comes home from dance. We work on one continent at a time accompanied with a cool video on the continent or one of its countries. I make lunch during the video. The kids eat at the island while I read the next Bible story. On to the next subjects! Writing, History, and read for 30 minutes. Nick and I try to squeeze an hour to ourselves to study his church History together. We usually end up talking about current events in his life, morals, God, or the other kids.  Its always a great time. We are definitely behind in Religion because of our goofing off.  By 2:00, Mrs. Hilboldt comes by with her lovely daughter, Emma. They take my Samantha down to her room and study Latin for 45-60 minutes. If they do well, Mrs. Hilboldt takes them to McDonalds where they study on their next class date.  Max needs extra help with Writing so he has me all to himself at this point. 

At this point, it gets tricky. These 3 kiddo's get dropped off for The King & I rehearsals at 5:00

At the same time, Nick drops off Mary Kate at Special Olympics practice
I pick up a nice man for my Theology of the Body class while Roy drops off the tiniest kids with his mom and sets up the TOB room at St. Matthews.  Roy, Nick and I take the TOB class from 7-8:30 at which point we split off again to grab the children at their various locations and taking the nice man home. I didn't mention how we ate dinner. I don't remember if or how we ate. I'm sure food got consumed but it was too fleeting to remember.
The night is not over! We still plan time for our "carefree timelessness" in the living room. We just sit quietly for about 15 minutes in the living room. The little kids color or read,  Nick is usually doing Math and Roy is letting the baby fall asleep on him. Me? I don't know what I do, I don't ever remember sitting quietly.  
This is my Tuesday! Next time someone asks what I do, I will refer them to my blog.