Sunday, June 4, 2017

A "Birthday" Cake for Pentecost Sunday AND the "Birth" of My New Blog!

A Birthday Cake for Pentecost Sunday 

Today happens to be the "birthday of the Church" or Pentecost Sunday!

The Catholic Church celebrates Pentecost 50 days after Easter, so Pentecost is the official ending of the Easter season in the Church calendar.  So NOW you can finally put away those Easter decorations!?! 😉

What is Pentecost? Read more at my new blog at  A Slice of Liturgical Life.

But, I'm so excited about my new blog, I'm getting ahead of myself so before you read more about Pentecost, I need to give you some background information below!  Read on! 

A New Blog is Born!

When I first started this blog in June 2010 (WOW! Was that really 7 years ago!) I was brand new to blogging and had fun creating my own blog as a hobby to document and savor the sweetness of faith, family and homeschooling. This blog's look has changed through the years, as well as my focus and mission of it. I have enjoyed the journey and have met some amazing friends! Some I have met in real life, but there are many others I would love to cross paths with besides in blog land.

In the last few years, I have noticed a trend with my posts.  I realized that I blog a lot about the liturgical year and the Church's feast days. My passion has become to evangelize to my family, friends, the world and anyone who will listen, about the beautiful, rich history and devotions of the Catholic faith, as well as document the fun our family has had focusing on the liturgical Church year with prayers, activities, crafts, and creative foods.

With that being said, this little corner of blog land will be quieter and posts will be less frequent because my heart is now into creating a new blog A Slice of Liturgical Life.  This is definitely a work in progress and will be for a long time, but I hope you will come along for the ride and learn about living the treasures of the Church with family, friends, joy and simplicity alongside me!  My new blog is in it's infancy (do you hear what I did there? :)  ) and it will take much time to grow, but I look forward to the journey ahead and I'm excited to share ideas, resources, and organization tips with you regarding living liturgically with family, friends, joy and simplicity!

For more information about A Slice of Liturgical Life, visit my About page.

Here is my blog's new header/logo:

THANK YOU to all those that have followed A Slice of Smith Life through the years....I hope you will follow my new blog as well!

Please check out the "birth" of my new blog and if you would like receive updates on A Slice of Liturgical Life posts be sure to subscribe via email below.

You can also follow me on social media on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter and  A Slice of Liturgical Life's Facebook page by "Liking" the Facebook page, . 

I would love to hear your thoughts and/or questions about A Slice of Liturgical Life!
What feast day would you like to know more about?
Please comment below or over at A Slice of Liturgical Life. I would love to hear from you! 

If you would like to subscribe to my new blog, A Slice of Liturgical Life,  and never miss an update or post of it's progress,  fill in your email address below!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Happy 17th Birthday to our Daughter!

To my firstborn who made me a Mommy for the first time,

17 years ago today we were blessed when we held you in our arms for the first time.  Here you are with Daddy and Mommy when you were just a few weeks old.  You were so little and Daddy and Mommy were soooooo young! :)

You were 6 lbs, 1 oz., so very tiny, but big enough to fill our hearts and home with love and wonder!  I remember being admitted into the hospital 2 weeks prior to your due date because of preeclampsia

To make a long story short, I was able to labor on my own without being induced and in about 6 hours with no epidural, you went from your dark, peaceful home into this bright, big world!  Your Daddy and I had tears of joy when we saw you for the first time!

I remember crying myself to sleep one afternoon soon after we got home from the hospital because you were so tiny and I was struggling to get you to latch on so I could nurse you.  Your Daddy woke me from my nap to tell me that he had made a phone call to our local La Leche League and made an appointment for us to see a consultant.  I remember the feeling of gratitude and relief after our appointment because I was soon able to nurse you.  I remember thinking that you have a wonderful Daddy and I have a supportive and loving husband.

We remember when you were and will always be Daddy's little girl and Dad will never forget his first Father's Day in 2000 when he held you lovingly in his arms and gave you a sweet kiss in the backyard in our "old, old house"...

I remember when we were celebrating your first Christmas when you were 7 months old.  The outfit you are wearing in the photo below has been worn by all your siblings too to celebrate their first Christmas.  Nowadays you are more into what's wrapped in the wrapping paper vs. just laughing at the funny sounds paper can make, like you did as a baby... :)

I remember when you were this little with your sweet bow in your hair...

I remember your 1st birthday when we had a "Ladybug" themed party and I made these ladybug cakes with a friend to celebrate your big day!

I remember when I was 17 weeks pregnant with your brother (although we didn't know if you were a big sister to a brother or sister at the time), and I held you on my first Mother's Day 2001 (the first Mother's Day with you outside of my womb) as you modeled your cute outfit with a hat with your adorable smile that lit up a room...

I remember when I borrowed a watermelon print dress from a friend just so I could take pictures of you beside a watermelon and eating a watermelon with me while my belly was getting as big as a watermelon carrying your sibling. (that's alot of repetition there!)  I wanted the matching watermelon (there's that word again!) dress too so I could make the adorable page for you in your scrapbook....

I remember taking this special photo capturing special memories.  Here you are with Nana and me. 3 generations! 

I remember how you loved peeking into the (pink) bassinet looking at your baby brother sleeping.  You were just 17 months old when he was born. You loved taking care of your little brother and still do!  And now you take care of your little sisters too!

I remember how you loved to dance so much that you would stand in front of the oven and stare at your reflection while you made all your graceful ballerina moves.

I remember when you went to Mass in this sunflower dress and hat the Sunday before your first sister was born in June 2004.

I remember that you loved and continue to love our family and faith traditions and how you light up our lives with your smile and sweet personality and talents each day. 

I remember that even as a little girl you loved learning about our Catholic faith.  I remember for your First Holy Communion in 2008, we went and took a picture at the same church that I received my First Holy Communion.  I remember thinking "Wow! You really do look like me!"


I remember when we celebrated your 10th birthday with an ice cream cone castle cake and played lots of games with friends in the backyard.

I will always remember how you have grown to love soccer and contribute so much to your homeschool soccer team with all your hard work and talent.

Speaking of soccer, this past season with the homeschool soccer league you received the Defensive Player Award from your coach and you were selected as an All Conference player in the homeschool  soccer tournament. Here you are with one of your sisters. I will always remember how hard you played this past season contributing so much to your team as a defensive player!

This past year I remember when you got your license!  

For your 16th birthday celebration our family will remember you going to see Captain America Civil War with Dad, sister and some friends.  I made you a Captain America pizza and ice cream cake with an Oreo crust , birthday cake ice cream and homemade whipped cream topped with strawberries, blueberries and marshmallows.   Pinterest is a life-saver!

Your God-fearing heart and sweet smile light up the room! We love you and we are proud of the beautiful young lady you are becoming each day! 

One of our birthday traditions is that the birthday child gets to pick a "sweet cereal".  So my kids have sweet cereals 5 times a year since the birthday child, of course shares their cereal choice with their siblings.  :)

 Happy 17th birthday to our beautiful young lady, inside and out!

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Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Our Lady of Fatima: 100th Anniversary and Canonization of 2 New Saints!

This post contains affiliate links.

May 13, 2017 was an exciting day in our Church's history!  It was the 100th Anniversary of when Our Lady of Fatima first appeared to 3 shepherd children, Lucia Santos, Francisco Marto and Jacinta Marto.  It's also the day that 2 of the children, Francisco and Jacinta, were the youngest non-martyrs to be canonized. This is the miracle that led to the Fatima children's canonization.

On May 13, 1917, our Blessed Mother appeared in Fatima, Portugal to these young children and then each month on the 13th of the month, until October 13, 1917, Mary continued to appear with messages of hope, penance and conversion.

We had a beautiful day celebrating this historic day!

On the morning of May 13th, I set our kitchen table with the following:
  • "100" chocolate cupcakes with cream cheese icing
  • Cupcake toppers that I made with a black and white image of the 3 children and then an image with Our Lady of Fatima with the children
  • a printable 3D "Our Lady of Fatima" that I purchased from Catholic Icing
  • Our Lady of Fatima Shining Light Doll
  • a page opened up to history about Our Lady of Fatima from the book Visions of Mary
  • a spinning sun fruit platter that I made in honor of the miracle of the sun that happened on October 13, 1917

We ate the cupcakes after lunch when we got back from a Rosary rally at a local park with other Catholics from different parishes in our area.

At 12 noon we met at a local park, had a procession, sang and prayed the rosary in honor of Our Lady of Fatima. We sang and prayed the rosary at certain verses and mysteries in English and then in Spanish since many of the Spanish community attended.

The rally started with a cold, overcast day and the rain started so everyone had umbrellas, but then as we started singing and praying the rain stopped and the sun started peeking through the clouds like a Fatima on May 13, 1917!

On my wish list is the book Fatima Mysteries: Mary's Message to the Modern Age that is lying on the table next to Our Lady of Fatima.

Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us!

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Wednesday, April 26, 2017

My Newest EpicPew Post: How to “Be Yourself” According to 8 Memes and a Journal

For the past several months I've been contributing to the site EpicPewYou can visit all my past posts for EpicPew from my archives and this one from last month, Raising Chaste Catholic Men in a Crazy Culture.

My most recent post is How to "Be Yourself" According to 8 Memes and a Journal.

There are memes for everything these days and so I was prompted to search “Be Yourself” to see how this common phrase has been put to images. I thought I’d share these thought-provoking and fun memes in hopes to encourage everyone to just “Be Yourself” and then introduce you to a beautiful journal that explores how Catholic teen girls can truly embrace being themselves through scripture, the Catechism, Saints and fun artwork.  Read more....

Screen Shot 2017-04-25 at 6.32.37 PM

I look forward to receiving this "Be Yourself!" journal to use with my own daughters!

I hope you will consider purchasing a journal for your own daughter(s) or a friend/family member or for a middle school girl at St. Helena-Incarnation School in Philadelphia with your $10 donation.

God bless and remember to "Be Yourself!"

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Feast of St. George and the (Veggie) Dragon

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April 23 is the feast day of Saint George, the patron saint of England and Catalonia and his cross can be found throughout England.

For the past couple years, I have made a veggie dragon (inspired by Shower of Roses) to remember this heroic Saint who defended the truths of the Church and fought the spiritual battle of good vs. evil.  

We also read Saint George and the Dragon and The Saint Who Fought the Dragon while we ate the veggie platter.

Here is a beautiful video about St. George from Catholic Online.

And if you have ever wondered about the story behind St. George and the slaying the dragon, be sure to read Saint George: Playing with the Saints!


To make the celebration of St. George even more memorable and fun for your children, check out this adorable St. George magnet from My Catholic Magnets.  My 3 year old loves playing with these magnets as we talk about each Saint!  You too can get these magnets with a 3 month Saint subscription for only $5!

Saint George - magnet

Sunday April 23, 2017 was also Divine Mercy Sunday so we celebrated both feast days as a family on the previous Friday.   You can read my Divine Mercy Sunday post for more details! 

St. George
Heroic Catholic soldier and defender of your Faith, you dared to criticize a tyrannical Emperor and were subjected to horrible torture. You could have occupied a high military position but you preferred to die for your Lord.  Obtain for us the great grace of heroic Christian courage that should mark soldiers of Christ.  

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Divine Mercy Sunday Celebration with Fruit Platter and Sundaes

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This past Sunday, April 23, 2017, was the first Sunday after Easter and the first Sunday after Easter is designated as Divine Mercy Sunday.   To learn more about this beautiful feast day be sure to read 7 Facts about St. Faustina and Divine Mercy.  And from my blog's archives you can read 7 Ways to Celebrate Divine Mercy Sunday with Children (and Adults too!).

We had a busy weekend so we actually celebrated Divine Mercy Sunday on the Friday before Divine Mercy Sunday before our family went in different directions.  We prayed the Divine Mercy Chaplet as a family while we ate our sweet treats. On Sunday, my husband did take some of our children (I was out of town at one child's soccer tournament) to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet and say prayers in front of the image.  The photo above was taken at my parish. 

As in year's past I made homemade whipped cream (an easy and delicious recipe) with strawberry and blueberry "rays".  We also had Divine Mercy "Sundaes".

Here's our sundaes with red and blue sprinkles and I read part from The Divine Mercy Image Explained.  

This year we forgot to add a heart strawberry to the sundae like we did in previous years

And this is the original painting of Divine Mercy! 

Eternal Father, I offer you the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your Dearly Beloved Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.

For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.

Sunday April 23, 2017 was also the feast day of Saint George so we celebrated both feast days as a family on the previous Friday.   You can read my Saint George post for more details!

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I'm Tracy. I love my faith, family and on most days, homeschooling my 5 blessings. When I'm not busy baking cakes for my family or making memories in real life or dreaming I had a housekeeper or professional chef, I enjoy documenting a slice of Smith life in blog land.

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