Catholic · LadyEm · Meaningful Mondays · Posts From The Past

Meaningful Mondays – Posts From the Past…

Happy Monday – in Homage to my past blog posts, I have decided to pick a few and post them again. I will be doing that over the next several months (or so). I’ll be copying and reposting book reviews and some key blog posts that I love. BUT – It’s too much work to recreate nearly ten years of blogging. Instead, I will write again about the Veiling Devotion, Bible Journaling, Homeschooling and why it works until it doesn’t… and many other things. Thanks for sticking with me as I grow my blog and reinvent myself as mom, wife, blogger, writer, etc.

The below is a post from May of 2010. Perhaps one of my biggest gifts is listening to strangers. I don’t know why they seek me out, but they do… in church, at restaurants, grocery stores and everywhere. I am so thankful for all I’ve learned from them!

May 20, 2010 – Stopped by a Perfect Stranger

Today my post is not about me…. it’s about Listening to and Loving Others….You know, sometimes we just need to be listened to and loved. And I met a lady in WalMart today who needed me to do just that – and it was so interesting and wonderful!

Here is her story!

Well, she was an only child. She was 12 (1952) when her parents took on a border (a married couple) in their garage apt. She said she stared at this man every day from the window. They moved away a year or so later. She got married had three boys, her husband left her for another woman (she was 25). So she got two jobs and was working at a local blood bank. A few years passed, and there was a blood drive for a major explosion on an oil field. This would have been like 1968. She said she never forgot him, she had a major crush on him for years as a little girl. And he had a distinctive voice that she’d have never forgotten!

Anyway – he was the foreman at the oil field and brought a big crew in to give blood for their co-workers. She said when she heard his voice the hair stood up on the back of her neck and she didn’t dare look at him. Well – he stopped and stared at her and she never looked up. She said — right before the doors closed at 7pm that night, he walked in, leaned over and said “you’re my girl aren’t you?” and she said “Yes”.

They went out to dinner, and got a laugh because he knew she was staring at him. He said that is partly why he and his wife moved. hahaha Turns out his wife had been killed in a car crash and he had a young daughter.  They married six weeks later. And do you know her ex tried to fight him a few times. Uh – he left her with three boys and ran off with someone else and then tried to fight the guy who finally loved her.  Years later when their oldest graduated the ex had the nerve to say “I don’t hate you”! Uh – THANKS BUDDY! She and I got a laugh at that.

Well, her husband died last year and she’s lonely!  They were married 41 years. She was talking about prices and started telling me how hard it has been since her husband has passed and how his last year or two alive depleted their savings and how the oil company went bankrupt and they don’t get his retirement he paid into all those years. And how she paid as much as she could on the bills, sold her house, etc… and just finally had to walk away. Seems the insurance company wouldn’t pay for the last stroke because he’d just been discharged less than ten days before and that is a loophole. And how she lives with one of her sons, and how she hates it… but no one ever asked her.

But she’s got her a job now and will be 70 in a few weeks. I may look her up. She told me where she went to church!  Anyway — I must have stood there for a good 45 minutes just listening.  We talked about how blessed she was and how she is house sitting and wouldn’t mind having an apartment of her own, but that she knew her husband wanted her with her son and that is where she’d stay.

It was neat.

Bless someone by just listening to their story. There is so much sadness in the world.  So many lonely people… Surely we have an hour or two once-in-a-while to spare.  I love stories like this. She must have known I needed her as much as she needed me.
 
Love and blessings,
LadyEm

Davis Family

Importing Old Blog Posts

Dear Ones,

I am SCARILY not technical. So I am importing (thank you You Tube) posts from my older blogs. I will likely go through and delete some older posts and recategorize, etc.

I am going to try (insert hysterical laughter here) to post craft posts a few days/week and Catholic Mom posts the rest of the time. I hope to work with someone soon that makes the blog more focused and less quirky (aka all over the place). I am the kind of person who has been through a lot… and it’s been a great benefit to me in life. But it can make me look scatter-brained if I’m not careful as I post about too many things.

I don’t ever want the blog to be methodical, however focused is good and needed. The thing is, I had a craft blog and a family blog. But I don’t homeschool anymore and my identity is changing AND I don’t know if I want two separate blogs.

Anywhoooo.

Y’all have a happy and blessed Monday.

Love and hugs,
LadyEm

Davis Family · HomeMaker · Kitchen Survival Workshop

Kitchen Survival Workshop – You NEED THIS

Dear Ones, I feel like I should say this…

“Hi, My Name is Emily Davis (LadyEm) and I am an organization Freak.” Until I moved here and completely forgot how to function. I wish I was joking about that.

Anyway – I love Jessica Fisher OF GoodCheapEats.com and LifeasMom.com. If you don’t know her story or follow any of her blogs, you really should. She’s also on FB. I started with her in I think 2008 doing Pantry Challenges (be on the lookout for that within the next six months) and I just love her style. But I am an arrogant know-it-all from time to time, and y’all, I “didn’t need” to plan for breakfast and lunch, I just planned for dinner. Um – Dear Emily – that’s not how it works!

So – you’ll be shocked if I tell you I am a perfectionist at heart. It’s such a sin y’all… because there is NO SUCH THING as perfect. However, I’ve learned to give myself grace and that it’s ok to step up my game. Right? Anywhooooo… I have been flailing for the past year… you may have seen me flailing as I did it with all the verve of a car dealership blow up guy. HA And then I was reminded about the Kitchen Survival Workshop. So exciting y’all. There are lists, and homework – every organized mamas dream. But there is also solid advice and tried&true recipes. Frugal and healthy and make-sense.

If you need:

  • to get organized in your kitchen.
  • help with meal plans and meal prep.
  • to remember that YOU are important.
  • to improve your grocery budget.
  • learn to BUDGET YOUR TIME! That was mind blowing to me.
  • be supported by a group.
  • … and much more (because everyone is different).

    You need to look into this class!

Once you take the class, we can compare notes. I hope you do!

As always, I’m Praying for you all! 
And if you want me to pray specifically for an intention, leave me a comment. 
Love, Hugs & Blessings,

Lady Em

Catholic · CCDTeacher · Davis Family

Dear God, Could YOU Repeat That?

Hello Dear Ones,

It’s been three busy weeks since I posted and I will catch up up soon, but suffice to say between traveling to Germany to take Bud to Baseball Camp, getting ready for the first day of school, and Meet The Teachers for CCD, as well as our Italian Rental having issues, I had no mental fortitude for posting, because people – I’m really trying not to complain. You’re welcome.


It’s CCD Season. This year in my class, my husband and teen son are my aides. I have another teen too. I’m so excited. We teach 3rd Grade. So first, I wanted to say, I’m praying for all of you who are CCD Teachers. Pray this prayer with me, as we start our CCD Year.

Stay with me…

Last evening, was day one of the Military Archdiocesan Catechist Training Class where we are learning the methodologies and best practices. And our teacher said these things that stood out to me, last night…

The Church exists to Evangelize. I exist to Evangelize. Catechesis is an essential moment in the process of evangelization. Catechesis is the responsibility of PARENTS first.

Do you ever hear something and think… “could you repeat that?” Not because you don’t believe it, or because you didn’t hear it, but because it SO resonates with you, you really want to hear it all again so you don’t miss anything. The Holy Spirit was in that classroom with us last night. It was awesome. And I want to tell you that this is my 10th year of teaching CCD and I am good at teaching children about our Faith. Not to pat myself on the back, it’s all God – in the form of the Holy Spirit! But this class is awesome and is encouraging me to dig deeper. So thankful.

But last night, more than ever before, I REALLY grasped, the importance of the task at hand in the world today for Catechists. Naples is Different y’all. And the Military Families here – so many are great, but their passion about and obligation to the faith seems to take a backseat to their desires to travel Europe, and for their children to participate in sports, etc. And it’s HARD to understand the WHY’s given the very passionately Catholic Diocese I came from. It’s hard because the world is politically correct and we are fearful of saying anything to parents. Souls are involved here, and it’s a serious business.

And yet, the humble reminder every day to Evangelize and meet people where they are… I can’t think of a better way to give back to Our Blessed Father and His Church than to teach CCD (for me). And I’m so thankful for all the children I have taught over the past ten years. In fact, last year, I met with the Priest here in Naples, it was about my son’s confirmation, and I had NO PLANS to teach CCD because I wanted to sit out a year. However, he said “we need you” and I said YES! It is a small FIAT, but there is such a GRACE in saying yes. That is the best decision I made because the children are everything!

I’m going to share with you a couple passages from this week and circle back to the title of this post, I promise. Let’s talk about Sunday’s Gospel Passage, Luke 14:1, 7-14. In this passage, God reminds us to be humble and not assume we are the most important or highest on a perceived rung. Right? Jesus instructs the host of the dinner, where he is sharing this Parable about Humility, not to invite friends and family so they might extend him an invite (in other words, don’t try to impress people so you will be good enough to be invited to their homes), instead invite the poor, crippled, lame, blind, etc… and be blessed by their inability to repay you.

Another reading that stood out for me this week, is 1 John 4:10-11. This was from today’s readings, that I read yesterday – because I thought it was the 4th all day (just being honest). The passage reads:

In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as expiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we must also love one-another.

You know this. And if you don’t – I’ll repeat it. Because I love you – you beautifully and wonderfully made, child of GOD! Amen!

Give your gifts freely and lovingly, not expecting anything in return. Do it because you serve our God – who loves you and taught YOU to love others as He loves you. We are called to love and evangelize – IN Jesus’ Holy Name!

I’ve rambled enough.
Praying for you all! 
And if you want me to pray specifically for an intention, leave me a comment. 
Love, Hugs & Blessings,

Lady Em

Catholic · PrayerLife · PrayerLifeStruggles

Prayer Life — There Will Be Dry Spells

…there will be DRY SPELLS!

Happy Monday Dear Ones,

When you think of your heart healing, what do you see? It’s funny, I googled “healing hearts” and there were so many images, but this one to the left is what I feel like my heart looks like. It’s patched, and cracked and worn, but red and has light around it. God is healing me! Thank you Lord.

I have prayed my whole life, as long as I can remember. I have lived through things that I pray most people don’t experience. I’m one tough cookie. But I have a fatal flaw… ok, a couple.

Before I point out my flaws and talk about Dry Spells in Prayer life… I wanted to say this…

It is not enough to say to a person who walks through tragedy, loss, a move across the ocean (read: this is also about me) “Pray About It”. It’s like telling a Catholic person they should go to Mass and receive the Eucharist. DUH! Right? WE KNOW!

Yes – people mean well, they do. But most of us have prayed all our lives. The thing is, we must be effective in our prayers. We must allow ourselves the chance to listen to God. We must take a step back from things (read: also people) that cause us to sin, and regroup so we can focus on the message. In short, we must keep walking through the desert of the dry spell when it seems like God has forsaken us, is not listening to or communicating with us in any way. These are the times he is most effective in teaching us.

This brings me to yesterday’s Gospel — The Gospel of St. Luke, Chapter 12: 32-48. Bottom line – we don’t know when our time will come. We have to be ready for it. We have to live our lives the right way, and love our families/friends and even enemies. Did you just hit that brick wall with me? Sigh ENEMIES. I have to love them too? YES! Yes you do. Welcome to my fatal flaw. I’m sick of ugly people that cross my path. SICK of the judgment. SICK of them. Thanks for listening. God doesn’t care that I am sick of them. He needs me to see something in this. He needs me to pray for them and learn from them. (Is being too dramatic a FLAW?)

God never promised us that life would be easy. Those of us who are faithful struggle as much or perhaps more than those who are not. Because when we can see the truth, we know what we are supposed to do – AND we all have a conscience. We always feel bad when we FAIL. And we fail. Don’t we? We condemn ourselves as not good enough; not thin enough, smart enough; not worthy of friendship; or even not a good enough Catholic…. (MAJOR FLAW). I hope it’s not just me (also a flaw).

I really feel like I am in a prolonged dry spell where my prayers, seemed unanswered. To make it worse, here in Italy, I have come across many who are only kind/helpful to people they perceive to be in authority. The rest of us are just in their way to perceived glory. It’s both sad and overwhelming at times to never be good enough for people like that. But I know this… I am in a DRY SPELL because I am not listening (FLAW). But I heard him recently, and I have learned this:

I have to stop letting other people’s perception of me define me. God made me. And their opinions don’t matter. They can’t. I am supposed to ONLY rely on and listen to God. THIS IS MY ITALIAN LESSON. I am ready to “get it” and move past it so I can stop driving myself crazy to be good enough for everyone else, when all I really need to concentrate on is God and His Love, and His Guidance and the good people HE placed in my life to love me – in spite of my flaws, because they are HIS people and they are MY people.

Let me turn now to a wise Priest’s words from the Magnificat. Words that I hope help you understand that we can’t ever stop trying to hear God’s words and on God’s Plan for our lives.

These are clearly the words of Father Haggerty and not mine.

What I read in this Meditation of the day is perseverance, silence, indomitable spirit — in short, blind faith, is what gets us through these dry spells. If you are in a Dry Spell, YOU are not alone. Keep Walking towards God. I am here with you because God needs us to see and feel others walk through things so that we can see and feel HIM in those of us lucky enough to be His Vessels.

Dear Lord,
Help me be a good enough person to acknowledge my flaws and help others not feel so alone. Help me listen when I don’t want to hear. Help me focus on what is important – YOU!
AMEN!

I hope in some way this post helped you. I want to face my flaws and acknowledge my dry spells so I can conquer my humanity through Him.

Praying for you all!
And if you want me to pray specifically for an intention, leave me a comment.
Love, Hugs & Blessings,

Lady Em

PrayerLife · PrayMoreNovenas

We Pray, He Heals…

Happy August 1st y’all. Can you believe it’s already August? In 25 days, our youngest starts his first day of Sophomore year. In two days, we will have been in Italy for two years and are having friends over to celebrate.

Today starts a month of Holiday here in Italy, and much of Europe.

Ferragosto, the Italian name for the holiday, comes from the Latin Feriae Augusti (the festivals of the Emperor Augustus) which were introduced back in 18 BC, probably to celebrate a battle victory, and were celebrated alongside other ancient Roman summer festivals.

https://www.thelocal.it/20180815/everything-you-need-to-know-about-ferragosto-assumption-august-15th-italy-national-public-holiday-

Most small shops, restaurants, etc are closed in August. And if they are NOT closed the whole month, they are definitely closed the 14-18 (roughly). This is a largely Catholic country, and while I have noticed, Catholicism seems liberal around the Naples area, where we live, everything will close on August 14-15 at least! August 15th, we Catholics celebrate the Assumption of Our Blessed Mother. It’s a Feast Day and a Day of Obligation, where we celebrate Mary’s Assuption into Heaven. We will have to go to Mass out on town, as I’m not sure the Catholic Community will have Mass on Base – Sadly. But I digress.

The purpose of the Title of this post is to draw you to The Pray More Healing Retreat, put on by Pray More Novenas. You can find them on FaceBook and their Website. I have prayed Novenas along with many thousands of people for years. If I am not mistaken, this Apostolate was started by a young couple and has grown by leaps and bounds. I don’t always communicate it well, especially given the trauma of my last few years, but they have made so much difference in my holding on to my faith. They really just don’t know. And yes, I do agree that I should tell them.

In the spirit of all they do – which is to bring people to prayer and conversation with God, they are putting on a self-paced, pay if you can, retreat called The Pray More Healing Retreat. Have you ever or do you know anyone who struggles with the enormity of the bad that has happened in life? It sounds like an Ad, and I promise I’m not getting paid, but if you answered yes, you need to join us. It’s self-paced and in the privacy of your home. It starts up on August 6th. I hope you will join us. And please contact them if you have ANY questions.

Life breaks our hearts and leaves us wounded. We are so blessed in our Catholic Faith to have the Eucharist and to have so many Saints guiding us to the Lord. Please know that when you pray in a group your prayers are so much more powerful, because when we pray for one-another, God hears our prayers many times, and each one is counted. I’m probably not saying it right. But – I know that HE HEALS!

I placed a few Bible verses that mention Healing in this post. There are so many more. But I want to draw your attention to Exodus. Y’all – in the beginning of the Bible, before Christ, God – our Father God, promised healing. We know our Healing is through Christ.

Take it from this very broken lady on the other side of the keyboard. He wants to heal you. No matter what you’ve walked through. And I would be honored to pray for you, and with you, if you ever need it – there is NO requirement to join this Retreat – FOR SURE!

I pray your August is fantastic.
Love, Hugs & Prayers,
LadyEm

Uncategorized

Dear Saint Martha…

Happy Monday All!

I was reading this morning about Saint Martha, as it is her Feast Day. I am so thankful for my Magificat Subscription here in Italy. It’s a little slice of Heaven. I glean so much from my conversations with God that almost always come from the daily readings.

Anyway — A Part of One of the prayers in the Magnificat was this:

You have called some to the service of work and some to the service of prayer: grant us mutual respect and support as we seek to further your kingdom.

You have called some to serve in public ways and some to serve in the privacy of the home: keep us all faithful to the tasks you have given us.

You have called some to serve in active ways and some to serve by suffering: Sustain us all in faith, hope, and love.

I love the reminder to serve in the ways God calls us to serve and be Faithful to Him in our service. I also love the reminder not to, say, judge others for serving differently… because if they are being faithful to God, it’s none of our business (my interpretation). I don’t know what it is about human nature that causes us to ask about why other people do or don’t do things. Truly – it’s none of our business.

There was a time in my life I was more Martha than Mary. But as I’ve matured, I understand I need to balance my natural affinity to serve all the people and do all the work like Martha does, by ramping up my prayer and contemplative life as Mary would have. But my natural instinct is Martha – all the way. And I think we all have seasons of doing and seasons of suffering/praying, etc. In the end it’s all DOING something, just not physically serving. You know?

I thought I’d share a couple Articles about Saint Martha.
Regina Magazine- Saint Martha, Virgin
Saint Martha’s Story
The Martha and Mary Balance

There are many others. I hope you enjoy them.

As women we really need to give ourselves and others the grace and support to live out the seasons of life we are walking through. I love discovering the peace of Mary, whilst still being able to host an event like a champ, you know? I am learning to give myself the grace of not doing something every moment of every day. Where are you in the Martha-Mary conundrum? I’d love to hear.

Saint Martha – Pray for us! That we may strike a balance between service and prayerful contemplation that is pleasing to the Lord. Amen!

Until next time, sweet readers.
Love, Hugs & Blessings,
LadyEm