Ten Reminders of God’s Love for You

(I am reposting this because I think we all need reminders of God’s love every now and again. When we are struggling or hurting in various ways it is easy to forget that we are not alone. So, if you are struggling, I hope these reminders will give you some hope and courage. God bless.)

Reminders of God's Love

Image by albertobarquin0 (2015) via Pixabay, CCO Public domain:

This post is dedicated to my Aunt Miriam who passed away a few years ago. She was one of the first people to encourage me to read the bible and to dedicate my heart to Jesus. I loved her so much and still miss her dearly. She loved God and understood His great love for us. She also loved to read her bible and did so faithfully. The Bible is God’s love story to us, so if you need a reminder of how much God loves you, here’s ten of them:

1. “O Lord, your love reaches to heaven; your faithfulness, to the clouds.” Psalm 36:6

2. “With age-old love I have loved you; so I have kept my mercy toward you.” Jeremiah 31:3

3. “The Lord, your God, is in your midst, a mighty savior; He will rejoice over you with gladness, and renew you in His love, he will sing joyfully because of you.” Zephaniah 3:17

4. “As the Father loves me, so I love you. Remain in my love John 15:9

5. “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for his friends.” John 15:13

6. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, so that whoever believes in Him might not perish but might have eternal live.” John 3:16 (My personal, all-time favorite verse from Scripture!)

7. “What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? As it is written: ‘For your sake we are being slain all the day; we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.” Romans 8:35-37

8. “For I am convinced that either death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38

9. “I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the holy ones, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge-that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!” Ephesians 3:16-21

10. “See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet we are.” 1 John: 31

I pray that you are touched by God’s love today. I pray that whatever you are going through you will have the courage and faith to stay strong. Never forget: You are loved. You matter. Your presence makes a difference in this world!

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10 Fun and Frugal Outdoor Activities for Children

*Finally, we are getting some warmer weather and no rain (at least here in NJ!) In honor of the nice weather I am republishing this popular post in case you want or need some ideas for outside activities.*

Fun and Frugal Outdoor Activities

(Image is in Public Domain)

Spring is underway and summer will be here before you know it. Everyone is heading outdoors and soon school (homeschool and traditional) will be coming to a close. With school’s end, the question becomes, “What do we do?” Here are some of Andrew’s favorite outdoor activities that keep him occupied and happy for long stretches. The best part? All these props can be bought for a buck at the dollar store or less in some clearance racks!

1. Sidewalk chalk. Andrew doesn’t like to draw or color – on paper. Give him a piece of chalk and he can draw and color and create games and have all sorts of fun on our driveway. 🙂

2. Hula hoop. Remember these as a child or am I dating myself! Andrew struggles keeping the hoop up which makes him determined to work on it until he gets it mastered!

3. Bubbles. Need I say more? Who doesn’t love a good bucket of bubbles on a warm clear day? Additionally, bubbles aren’t only cheap, but also so easy and fun to make!

4. Hose. You can either hook up one of those Slip ‘N Slide things or sprinkler for some wet fun on a hot day. Or do double duty and have your child (children) help you wash your car or whatever you need cleaning. LOL!

5. Balloons. Water balloons are fun, of course. But so are regular balloons. Andrew has quite an imagination and he finds all sorts of uses for them..

6. Old-fashioned Tag. Most kids love tag. It’s not only fun but good exercise, too. If you can, try to get in a game for yourself and get in some exercise for yourself too. 😉

7. Ball. Baseball, basketball, tennis ball or any kind of ball in the hand of a kid is a good thing!

8. Marbles. I played marbles as a kid in NYC. We’d play in the park or dead-end streets. It’s a lot of fun and I’m working on teaching my son and his friends. To learn how to play, go here or here.

9. Obstacle course. This is another super-fun activity for kids that will get them some exercise. It’s so easy to set up a course where they race to jump, climb crawl around, over and under things.

10. Camping. I’m not talking about out in the back-woods, “real” camping (although that’s a great idea too). I’m talking about a tent in the backyard kind of camping. 🙂 A picnic, cards, reading or anything in the tent seems to make it all the more special.

What are your favorite outdoor frugal activities for kids? Do share!

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Here is a printable version of this list, no opt-in reequired: 10 Fun and Frugal Outdoor Activities for Children

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10 Things to Love About Spring

Here in NJ, it feels more like Fall than Spring. In fact, it seems as if we are having a colder Spring than we did during winter! Still, Spring is here and I love it! I may have a new appreciation for Autumn, but spring is still my favorite season of the year. Just for fun, I am reposting my reasons why:

10 Things to Love about Spring

Image by Kapa65 (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

1. The weather. I realize that we in NJ had a very mild winter this year, and it is cold right now, but that isn’t going to stop me from enjoying the warmer, lovely spring weather. 🙂 As cold as it, we have had some glorious days to remind us that warmer days are on their way.

2. The sandals. Finally we can free our toes from the clunky, closed in shoes and sneakers worn all winter! I have a couple of pairs of really comfortable sandals and flip-flops I can’t wait to get on my feet.

3. The longer days. Once we get over the jet lag of losing an hour, isn’t having the extra light in the evenings wonderful? I admit, it’s harder to get Andrew down to sleep on school nights, especially now that he is eleven. Who wants to go to bed when it is still light out? Not me!

4. The flowers. I love all the flower gardens that will be popping up around the neighborhood soon. Some people do a fantastic job creating elaborate flower gardens. In the apartment building I live now, there are some creative tenants who do a great job decorating their patio/balcony.

5. The planting. Speaking of gardens, another thing I love about spring is planting tomatoes, basil and other herbs. Granted, I can’t do much where I live; however, I am hoping to do some pot gardening this year.

6. The smells and sounds. I absolutely love the smell of freshly cut grass (sorry to all those with allergies)! My apartment complex has landscapers come once a week to cut the grass and I love it. Also, soon people will be using their grill, and the smell of barbecue will be in the air. Finally, the salty smell of the ocean will become more prominent and the other spring smells are so wonderful. 🙂 Additionally, now that spring is here, more people will be getting outdoors and we will start hearing more sounds of the laughing children, people having a good time, etc. There’s nothing like it!

7. The Easter Triduum. Easter came early this year (March 2016) but it still was after the official start of Spring! We know that the Easter Triduum (Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Saturday evening Easter Vigil) is the most Sacred days of the liturgical calendar. I love participating in these liturgies, and my favorite is the Easter Vigil. I love the Exsultet, especially when it is sung!

8. The fruits. Yes, I know we can get many fruits year-round, but let’s be honest, they aren’t the best tasting. Have you ever had a strawberry right off the vine? Scrumptious! Spring is also the season for apricots, cherries, and rhubarb. Yum.

9. The veggies. Spring is the season of one of my favorite veggies, asparagus. I also love artichokes, beets, radishes and fresh peas, all of which are in season during the spring.

10. The hats. Call me old-fashioned, but I miss the days of Easter bonnets. I love hats and wear different hats all year-long. The light, colorful floppy hats that start coming out in spring are so much fun to wear! 🙂 And they are practical, too. Those floppy hats and visors keep the sun off the face to prevent burns and skin cancer.

Now it is your turn. What are your favorite things about spring? Do share!

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10 Scripture Verses for Holy Week

(repost)

In just a few days we will celebrate the solemn liturgies of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter. To help us enter more deeply into these mysteries, here are ten scripture verses to pray over during Holy Week:

10 Scripture Verses for Holy Week

Image by geralt (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

From this week’s liturgies:

1. Isaiah 42:1 “Here is my servant whom I uphold, my chosen one with whom I am pleased, upon whom I have put my spirit; he shall bring forth justice to the nations”

2. John 13:26-27 “Jesus answered, ‘it is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it.’ So he dipped the morsel and handed it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot. After he took the morsel, Satan entered him.”

3. Psalm 69:14 “But I pray to you, Lord, for the time of your favor. God in your great kindness answer me with your constant help.”

From the Seven Last Words of Jesus:

4. Matthew 27:46 “And about three o’clock Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Eli, eli, lema sabachthani?’ which means, ‘My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?'”

5. Luke 23:34 “Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.'”

6. Luke 23:43 “Amen, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”

7. Luke 23:46 “Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Father, into your hands I commend my spirit;’ and when he had said this he breathed his last.”

8. John 19: 26-27 “When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, ‘Woman, behold, your son.’ then he said to the disciple, ‘Behold, your mother.’ And from that hour the disciple took her into his home. ”

9. John 19:28 “After this, aware that everything was now finished, in order that the scripture might be fulfilled, Jesus said, ‘I thirst.'”

10. John 19:30 “When Jesus had taken the wine, he said, ‘It’s is finished,'”

I choose these verses because they are very meaningful to me; however, there are many other beautiful scriptures applicable for this sacred week to pray over. What are your favorites? Do let us know in the comments.

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Ten Ways to Get The Most Out of Lent

(repost)

As you know this week is Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent. I *LOVE* Lent. I do. Really! Lots of us cradle Catholics find the fasting and sacrifices of Lent a drudgery. Others ignore Lent altogether. Not me. I see Lent as a mini New Year. A new beginning and another chance to re-charge the batteries in my relationship with the Lord.

10 Ways to Get the Most out of Lent

Here are some ideas for you to spend your time this Lent. (Btw, if you read my “Making Advent Meaningful” post, you’ll notice some of the suggestions are the same. That’s because there are some things – like the Mass and rosary – that are worth being reminded of again. 🙂 )

1. Daily Mass. Since the Eucharist the the “source and summit of our faith”, it stands to reason that daily mass should be on top of our Lenten “to-do” list!

2. Adoration. Next to the mass, adoration is the next best thing – especially if you are unable to make it daily mass for whatever reason. More and more parishes are offering at least monthly or weekly exposition and adoration (and some have perpetual adoration) of the Blessed Sacrament, so try and snag a half hour each week if you can!

3. Stations of the cross. The Stations of the Cross is a beautiful way to remember the passion of the Lord. Again, most parishes have Stations of the Cross once or twice each Friday of Lent. If you can’t make it to church, you can get some beautiful pamphlets for next to nothing and pray they them at home with your family.

4. Forgive. Through Jesus, our sins are forgiven and so that we may receive mercy. One of the best (and hardest!) ways to show gratitude for the Lord’s goodness is to forgive those who have hurt us – especially if the transgression was grievous. Just as hard, if  not even harder, is forgiving ourselves. Or sometimes we hold on to grudges and anger, even when we can’t remember how a particular person has hurt us! If you see yourself in any of these scenarios, maybe you can pray the Lord opens your heart to forgiving someone who has hurt you, or praying that He will help you forgive yourself? Even the prayer that He helps you to WANT to forgive would be a great start…

5. Pray the Liturgy of the Hours. The morning and evening prayers of the Liturgy of the hours are always beautiful, but especially during the Lenten season.  It is the official prayer of the church, and when you pray the Liturgy of the Hours, you are united will all the faithful around the world who are praying it with you!

6. Go to confession. It’s called the Sacrament of Reconciliation now, but whatever you call it, there’s no better way (besides the mass!) to prepare for Easter. There will be (or should be) many Penance services around your diocese, so you should be able to find one that fits in your schedule.

7. Watch the Passion of the Christ. Yes, watching the Passion of the Christ is painful. It’s in your face. It renders us speechless. And it should. What Jesus endured for our sake wasn’t “touchy feely” or a walk in the park. It was ugly, but our sin in even uglier, and sometimes we (I) need something like this movie to remind us (me) just how much Jesus loves us and was willing to endure for us.

8. Pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet. Who says you have to wait for the Divine Mercy Sunday Novena to pray the chaplet? It’s a short but perfect prayer for Lent. I also try and read parts, if not most, of Saint Faustina’s diary during Lent, too.

9. Pray the the Scriptures. Next to participating in the Sacraments, there is no better way to deepen our relationship with the Lord than Scripture.  Spending as little as five minutes a day with His Word can transform your life. (New to reading the Bible? Read this guide on how to pray the Scriptures.)

10. Fast. All through Lent we will be hearing about fasting. It’s good for the soul. It opens our eyes to the needs of others. it cleanses us of our base passions. But, fasting isn’t just giving up food, or even television (both of which are excellent). This year, why don’t we fast from anger, sloth or any of the other “capital sins” and try to feast on its opposing virtue? (I know my diet has been terribly deprived of patience lately! 😉 )

Now, don’t feel pressured to do all of these activities. Remember, the focus is to deepen our relationship with Christ not add on more to-dos! Start out small. Pick one to three activities and focus on those. Lent is not a competition or race to see how much you can do. It is about focusing on a few things and doing them well so that you can focus on growing deeper in your relationship with the Lord, not exhaust yourself.

So tell us, what are your suggestions for making Lent special for you this year?

P.S. For a printable version of this list go here to subscribe. Subscribers, go to your private page to download the list.

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10 Must-Do Autumn Maintenance Tips for the Home

*I recently shared 10 must-haves for an emergency kit and since we are in the full-bloom of the Autumn season, I thought I would re-post some Fall maintenance tips for the home. Winter is fast approaching so if you haven’t thought about preparations yet, now would be a good time to start. 🙂

10 Must-Do Autumn Maintenance Tips for the Home

Now that autumn is here, it’s time to prepare for the winter months by doing a little home maintenance. Here’s a check-list of some of the important things you should remember to do (or add to your husband’s “honey-do” list 😉  )

1. Say goodbye to your summer “stuff”. It is time to clean and pack away all your summer furniture, toys, wading pools, garden hoses, etc.

2. Empty and stow away any gas-powered equipment; such as lawn mowers and grills. (Unless you are a die-hard griller and grill all winter like a friend of mine does, that is!)

3. Clean the gutters. It’s not a pleasant job but you should inspect your gutters every spring and autumn. Take the time to get rid of any debris or dirt that may have gotten caught in the gutters.

4. Remove screens. Take out all window screens and door screens. Repair screens as needed so you won’t have to fix them next spring. Put in storm windows if you have them.

5. Change all air filters. It’s best to change air filters every three to six months, so you may want to set up reminders to yourself to do this.

6. Inspect vents and heating ducts. Clean, dust and repair if needed. It’s also a good idea to make sure your heater is working efficiently, too. Better to find out you need your heater fixed now then when it 10 below!

7. Cover the second floor vents. I got this tip from my father in-law. In the winter, cover the vents on the upper floors of your house and open wide the vents on your first floor and basement. Since heat rises, doing this helps to keep your first floor a little warmer without putting the thermostat up too high. *

8. Check for leaks. Inspect all windows and doors to make sure there aren’t any drafts. If so, caulk, seal or replace strippers. You can buy an insulator kit; or, cover the windows with plastic. don’t forget to check any wires or plumbing that leads to the outside to make sure they aren’t leaking any drafts into the house, too.

9. Replace those batteries! Test and replace the batteries in all smoke detectors, carbon monoxide monitors and flash lights.

10. Inspect your fireplace. If you have a fireplace, consider getting a chimney sweep and have a professional inspect the fireplace to make sure it is safe to use.

Just one more:

11. Check for bugs. Now that the weather is getting cold, you may want to keep an eye out for bugs, small animals and/or other critters who may be looking for a warm place to stay! The attic, kitchen cupboards and dark basements are all places they like to hide. If need be, get an exterminator.

You turn. What’s your autumn “must-do” maintenance tip? Let us know in the comments.

*Reverse this for the summer: Cover all the vents on the first floor and basement and close all the vents in the upper floors. This will keep the upper floors a little cooler in the summer.

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Here is a printable version of this list, no opt-in required: 10 Must-Do Autumn Maintenance Tips for the Home

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Ten Must-haves for an Emergency Kit

* I heard that it is going to be an especially cold winter this year so I thought I would revive this post. Things happen and it is a good idea to be prepared.

We all know the importance of having an emergency kit; but, how many of us have actually taken the time to put one together? Ideally, we should have two: one for our homes and one for our car(s). Emergencies happen when we least expect it. Or, when we are least prepared.

10 Must-haves for an Emergency Kit

With the holiday season fast approaching, many of us will be traveling by car (often long distances) to our festive gatherings. Lots of accidents and break-downs happen during the holiday season, so if you don’t have an emergency kit  in your car, now many be a good time to think about getting one together.

Here’s a list of the most common (and important) things to keep in your emergency kit:

1. Water. We personally keep three cases in our car at all times, but a couple of gallons or cases of bottled water should be enough.

2. Food. Non-perishable foods, such as pretzels or granola bars, would be best; although throwing a few pieces of fruit in the car as you are leaving would be a good idea, too. 🙂

3. Blankets. If you break down and have to wait a while (or longer) for a service truck, having a few extra blankets will come in handy. 🙂

4. Medical supplies. You should have extra prescription medications, Acetaminophen, a first-aid kit and  personal medical supplies (such as diabetes equipment, etc.) as part of your emergency kit.

5. Extra clothes. Obviously, if you are traveling by car you have a suitcase (or several!) full of clothes already with you. However, It’s a good idea to keep an extra outfit for each person in the car at all times. You never know when you’ll be glad you did!

6. Flash light and extra-batteries. Enough said here; except, if you have a child like my son (who likes to take the flashlight – or anything else for that matter! – apart), you might want to keep the flashlight out of reach of your little one!

7. Road flares. They aren’t that expensive and can help prevent an accident if you breakdown at night.

8. GPS Tracking System or Maps. A lot of cell phones have built-in GPS tracking systems now-a-days, and if yours does, you are all set. If not, you may want to invest in one. Or, get a local map(s) of the areas you will be traveling in.

9. Whistle. Okay, I am be a bit paranoid; but, there are some not-so-nice people out there, so yeah, I keep a whistle with me. Yelling “help” or even “fire” might not get attention, but a whistle sure will! (My late great-Aunt once saved herself from being attached once by blowing a whistle into the ear of the attacker! I’ve never forgotten that!)

10. Extra kids stuff. Again, if you are traveling with kids you have what you need already; but, it would be good to keep an extra bag of things you need for little ones in the car at all times. And don’t forget to keep a personalized child’s traveling bag within reach, too! (We certainly want to keep our little ones happy while traveling!)

Do you have an emergency kit prepared? If so, what’s in yours?

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Here is a printable version of this list, no opt-in required: 10 Must-Haves for An Emergency Kit

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Ten Reasons to Love Autumn

(repost)

My favorite season has always been spring; but, I have to admit that autumn has slowly become my new favorite. I don’t tolerate winter very well, so for years, autumn was nothing more than a precursor to my most dreaded season. However, over the past few years, I’ve come to appreciate the many joys of autumn. Here are the top ten reasons I’ve come to love the season of autumn:

10 Reasons to Love Autumn

1. Cooler weather. After the scorched days of August, the cooler weather of autumn is a welcome relief!

2. The colors. I love the deep, earthly colors of autumn! The reds, the oranges, the yellows and browns are comforting and homey.

3. Fall Foliage. When I lived in Ohio, I loved walking or driving around town to look at the leaves as they turned color and fell to the ground. Here, in NJ, I love to see the turning leaves. the NJ Parkway is lovely in the fall. And, who doesn’t love the reward of jumping into a newly raked pile of crunchy leaves?!!

4. Fall Festivals. Bring on the fall festival fun! The hay rides, the mazes, and all the harvest goodness that comes with fall festivals is definitely worth the onset of autumn. 🙂

5. Snuggling. It is so much fun to snuggle up on the couch with a good book and cup of tea. Or, better yet, to cuddle up on the couch with my husband and son and read or watch TV together!

6. Flannel sheets. I love the cozy warmth of flannel sheets (and pajamas). Although, I must confess, it makes getting out of bed so much harder. 😉

7. Family gatherings. Summer gatherings and barbecues are fun; but, there’s nothing like Thanksgiving dinner or getting together around the kitchen to chat or for a rowdy game of Pictionary!

8. Pumpkin carving – and eating! Some people are so creative. It’s fun to see all the different designs and characters that are carved out of the pumpkins. Unfortunately, I’m not very creative, so I’ll stick to decorating with markers and stickers. LOL! And let’s not forget the wonderful pumpkin pie, pumpkin bread, and pumpkin soup!

9. Apples, apples, everywhere!  Apple picking must be one of the best things about fall. And, even if you can’t get to an apple orchard, apples are so inexpensive now. There are so many varieties to try and choose from. I make a simple homemade applesauce that my family loves. Besides, who doesn’t love warm apple cider, apple pie and apple butter? I also like to toss apples in my sausage, peppers and potatoes recipe for a touch of sweetness.

10. Soups and Stews. There’s nothing better than a nice, hot bowl of soup to warm you up on a cold day, so I make lots of homemade soups and stews in the fall/winter. Just throw a few ingredients in the slow cooker and in a few hours you have a tasty and hearty supper. Add some bread and/or salad and you have a complete and healthy meal.

The one thing you aren’t going to find on my list is football. I’m sorry (Not!) to say that I don’t like football. {gasp!} It’s true. I find it boring. Did you know that during a 3 hour football game there’s only about 11 minutes of action. I’m not kidding. My father-in-law read it somewhere last year and then calculated it for himself. If you don’t believe me you ask him yourself! 😉 That’s not to say that I never watch a game. My husband watches it once in a while; so I’ll sort of watch bits and pieces of the game.

What do you love about Autumn? Do share!

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(This post is linked to Top Ten Tuesday and Works for me Wednesday.)

Ten Places to buy Modest Swimsuits

swimming-pool-504780_1280WM

(Note: This is a repost of one of my most popular post with an updated image and printable download.)

We are quickly approaching Summer and the hot weather that comes with it. Unfortunately, that often means a lot of people walking around wearing almost nothing – especially at the beach or pool. It often amazes me how people wear swimsuits that cover less then their underwear does!

It particularly bothers me to see little girls (4, 5, 6 and 7 year-olds) wearing bikinis. Little girls should be taught the virtue of modesty and respect for their bodies as temples of God, rather than flaunting their bodies as if it was the most natural thing in the world. {sigh}

Off the soap box now. This post is for us grown-up women who are looking to wear beautiful, modest swimsuits. If you are in the market for a new swimsuit, here are some great places to get modest, attractive looking swimsuits (keep in mind that some of these sites are operated by women with different faith traditions and beliefs other than Christian and the price range for some of these suits can run a bit high):

1. Simply-Modest.com.

2. Solartex.com.

3. Stitchintimes.com.

4. Swimmodest.com.

5. Wholesomewear.com.

6. Dressingforhisglory.com.

7. Blair.com. (Some suits are more modest than others, so beware before you click over…)

8. Modestswimwear4u.com.

9. Biblicalgarden.com.

10. Modestswimwearsolutions.com.

If you have a favorite retailer that promotes modest swimsuit, do share! What are your thoughts on the lack of modesty with bathing suits? Or am I alone in my distaste for the whole bikini wearing thing?

You can print out this list, no opt-in required, here:  10+ Places to Find Modest Swimsuits

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(Image in public domain)

10 Saints in Heaven You Should Get to Know

All Saint's Day

(Inspired from RAnn’s latest Question of the Week, and because it is All Saint’s Day (again), I am re-posting this list of saints you should get to know. This list is still relevant and if you haven’t gotten to know them yet you should now. 🙂 )

In honor of All Saint’s Day, I thought I’d share some well-known and not-so-well known saints that would be worth getting to know. 🙂 These saints have been lifted up as examples for us by the church because of their faith, love for God and heroic virtue.

1. St. Joseph. The foster-father of Jesus and husband of Mary is the patron of workers, families and fathers. We need his example in today’s world where families are under (spiritual) attack.

2. St. Jeanne Jugan. I’ve talked about Saint Jeanne Jugan several times before. Her humility, faith and forbearance in difficulties during her lifetime is truly a testimony to God’s goodness. I’m not sure if she is an “official” patron of the elderly, but she should be. 🙂

3. St. Jose Maria Escriva. St. Jose Maria is the founder of Opus Dei, a Catholic institution devoted to helping people grow in the relationship with God through their everyday lives. He had written many books in his lifetime and I love his practical, common sense way of lifting the soul up to God in the midst of all that we do in our lives.

4. St. Faustina. Saint Faustina is known as the “Apostle of Mercy” due to her revelations of Jesus and His infinite mercy. If you haven’t done so, you should really read parts or all of her diary, “Divine Mercy in My Soul.”

5. St. Martin de Porres. When I was discerning a vocation, years ago, a sister I knew had great devotion to St. Martin de Porres. She lent me a book about his life and from then on I’ve developed a devotion to him as well. He was one of those saints who practiced severe penances and received extraordinary graces, which most of us are not called to; but, we can imitate his love of prayer, sacrifice and love for the poor. (FYI: His feast day is this Thursday.)

6. St. Bridget of Sweden. A wife and mother of 8 children, St Bridget had great devotion to the Passion of the Lord. She is the one who received the “15 Prayers” found in the Pieta Prayer Book.

7. St. Vincent de Paul. Did you know that the body of St. Vincent de Paul is somewhat incorrupt? It is and when I lived in France years ago, I was able to pray at his shrine. He is known for his great love for the poor and the St. Vincent de Paul Society continues his work today.

8. St. Agnes. St. Agnes is a great saint for your daughters. She is an example of purity and love of God and gave her life rather than sin!

9. St. Dominic Savio. Where Saint Agnes is a great saint for your daughters, St. Dominic Savio is the saint for your sons. He, too, is an example of great purity and custody of the eyes. He also had a deep devotion to Our Lord in the Eucharist. His motto: “Death, but not sin!”

10. St. Margaret-Mary Alacoque. Saint Margaret-Mary was the apostle of devotion of the Sacred Heart. She suffered much in her life; and yet, she acted with charity, humility and prayer toward those who persecuted. When we are wronged, especially deeply, it is SO HARD to forgive the person (or persons) who have hurt us. So maybe, besides devotion to the Sacred Heart, prayer and silence, St. Margaret can teach us how to forgive.

(P.S. I purposely left out the Blessed Mother because, well, it should be a given that we honor Mary and try to live by her example!)

Who’s your favorite not-too-well-known saint? Do share in the comments so we can get to know them. 🙂

****All Saints Day is a Holy Day of Obligation so don’t forget to make time to go to Mass!

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10 Saints in Heaven You Should get to Know.