Check out Kate’s Catholicmom.com contribution for January, looking forward to Lent’s quick approach.
I’m trying not to get into the holiday season too early. We still have 2 more holidays to go before we actually get to Advent and Christmas. But already people are starting to talk about Christmas gifts. And I’ll be honest, as a crafter I’m already knee deep in crochet projects for Christmas gifts.
I read something recently about small businesses, especially the home businesses that many moms are part of. Maybe it’s a small Etsy or Peter’s Square business, maybe it’s home-baked cookies at the farmers’ market or locally sourced honey. Often times, the products these small businesses may cost more than similar products you might find at Walmart or Amazon. And more often than not, they can’t support the free shipping we have been conditioned to expect, or even deserve.
The ability to buy whatever we want, and can have 2-day shipping to boot, has encouraged us as a society to become even more impatient than human nature already inclines us to be. Our attention spans, and capacity for waiting, continues to diminish. We can’t even wait for the holidays to arrive in their natural order of time. We are so excited for what comes next, instead of relishing what is now.
Even as I type this, I am anticipating what is coming, instead of being present in what is now. I almost said “As we look forward to Advent coming, it is a great time to slow down and practice waiting.” But you know what, why wait for Advent? Because I don’t know about you, but I could do with slowing down. My head is already starting to spin with Christmas present ideas, what to make for Thanksgiving, whether to host an Advent Bible study or not, how long our homeschool break should be, etc. Actually, I think that I always could use some slowing down.
So starting today, literally today, I am purposefully slowing down. Here are two things I am implementing immediately, hopefully with more to follow.
- I’m trying to drink more water. I’ve put a tracking system into my planner (just little water droplets to cross off, nothing fancy) to help remind me to drink more water. Because when I am hydrated, I’m less anxious, less stressed and my body is able to function as it was designed.
- I am saying a daily rosary. A bit ago I purchased a beautiful rosary bracelet from ChewsLife, a website run by moms in Michigan that has created beautiful rosarys for young and old. Literally, they have rosaries and rosary bracelets designed for little babies with safe, silicone beads that they can chew on and play with. It’s so cool. Their rosary bracelets for adults are lovely because they have a movable crucifix that you can use to hold your place, so that your rosary can stretch throughout your day (the only way I am able to get a rosary finished.
Though not part of slowing down necessarily, there is another practice that I am going to be more conscious about employing. Before jumping on Amazon to grab whatever it is I’m looking for, especially if it is a gift, I’m going to start smaller. If you haven’t heard of it yet, Peter’s Square is basically Catholic Etsy. Which is so cool! Then there is Etsy itself, which hosts so many incredible Catholic products and shops. There is also your local area, where perhaps you have smaller artisans who take such time and care in crafting their product. When I find that perfect gift, I’m not going to shoot over to Amazon to find something similar but with free or quicker shipping. Instead, I’m going to be willing to wait, to pay for shipping if asked. It is a way to intentionally help support another, and to put into practice the art of waiting.
I loved Danielle’s presentation yesterday! Did you? I was also super inspired by the healthy eating presentation by Katie Kimball on Day 1. We might be asking grandparents to gift her kitchen class for kids web series for Christmas. It looks so good, and purposeful presents. That’s the Christmas theme this year – purposeful presents.
I hope you’ve been enjoying the conference. If you’re just hearing about it, no worries! Today is only Day 3 of 5, plus a bonus Day 6 of encores of the presentations. And it’s totally free! Seriously, go check it out.
If you wanted to hear more about what I thought about Danielle’s presentation, head on over to CatholicMom.com where it posted yesterday.
Also, if you are loving this who experience, there is a way for you to keep the spirit alive. Catholic Mosaic, the organization who puts this conference on, has a special M4M (More 4 Mom) package that you can purchase. You get all the presentations to download, so you can watch them anytime, anywhere. Also included is a discussion guide for all the presentations. Looking for a new study for your Moms group? Trying to get a way to engage parents during your Religious Education classes? Need something quick and easy for Advent this year? The applications are endless!
If that wasn’t enough, you also will receive ebooks, inspirational prints, coloring pages and so much more! When you add it all up, it’s about $150 worth of stuff, which is incredible!
The presentations, plus the bonus material, is only $30. It is a great price for such a wealth of information, resources and encouragement. Check out here for the full list and details. Also, as an affiliate of the conference, if you use my links listed here I will receive a small kickback as thanks for sending you there.
My big takeaway yesterday came from Colleen Duggan’s Love in the Family presentation where she challenged everyone to consider how often during the day they thought about themselves. How often am I thinking about what I want to do, how easy or hard this moment is for me, when will I be done, ect. There’s some deep thinking and praying in this for me, I’ll probably be blogging about it soon.
Enjoy the conference! And check out the More 4 Mom package!
Hey everyone! I intended to get this awesome info in your hands last week, but the week (and Eliza’s mysterious fever) got the best of me. So here we are, the day before this exciting opportunity which starts TOMORROW! The Catholic Conference for Moms is an online conference that is totally, completely and 100% FREE for anyone who signs up.
This conference is so great. This year, the conference theme is Pass It On, thinking specifically about what we pass on to our children. What things do we want to pack in their proverbial life backpacks. Speakers from all over the country and walks of life share a bit about what the essentials for a well stocked life backpack would be. Each day 3 new presentations are available, but you can still see the ones you may have missed from the previous day. The presentations are simple videos of the person talking and are perfect to listen to while folding laundry, stirring a pot of soup, or sitting quietly with your cup of morning coffee (you might even be able to take a note or two). And you always have the handy dandy pause button to back you up when life happens.
Some of the topics covered this year are:
There are already thousands of moms, and parents in general, who have signed up for this conference. It is a worthwhile way to spend your week, especially as we are all looking forward to the holidays. What is truly important in our family? What are the lessons my own attitude is teaching my children? How can our family grow in holiness these last months of the year? What are the areas we are succeeding in helping our children lead happy, holy lives? What are the areas we need to concentrate on?
This conference is an opportunity to rest and rejuvenate yourself spiritually, especially within the context of your vocation as a parent. I cannot encourage you enough to sign up.
I’ll be posting again in a few days about Danielle Bean’s presentation “Love of Learning” which I got to preview ahead of time – it’s so good! My review will be here as well as on Catholicmom.com where you can join in discussions all week long about the conference.
Absolutely in love with the conference? Wish you could keep some or all of the presentations? Want a ton of free stuff and discounts? Be sure to check back on my review for information on how you can score a TON of conference swag, books, ebooks, discounts to Catholic websites of all kinds, and the presentations to keep. =) =) =)