Welcome to the LittleWays – finding ways to celebrate our love of Jesus and our faith in all the little ways daily as inspired by St. Therese!
I love being Catholic –there are so many reasons to rejoice and celebrate all the time. Now that my children are getting a bit older feast days have become a time of great joy and celebration for us in a whole new way. You can find a reason to celebrate almost every day as a Catholic from liturgical seasons, to feast days – life is such a blessing! I thought it would be fun to start sharing some of the ways we are rejoicing and celebrating in our faith.
I always love finding new ideas to do with my kids. My son loves to eat and my daughter loves crafts so it’s always easy to generate excitement in our house hold! Welcome to my new blog The LittleWays – finding ways to celebrate our love of Jesus and our faith in all the little ways daily as inspired by St. Therese!View Post →
With Divine Mercy Sunday approaching – I found two great Divine Mercy Resources for children that I just had to share.
The first is this lovely free Divine Mercy Chaplet for Kids video from EWTN
The second is this great Divine Mercy Chaplet craft from Rosary Mom that you can use to help teach your children the Chaplet. She adapted the Chaplet Craft from Making Music Praying Twice – Chaplet Lacing Craft so that it included the Eternal Father Prayer. But the Template at Making Music Praying Twice is lovely, you can just print the Simple Pattern and write the Eternal Father Prayer onto it and then print out the Pattern with Written Words and you have a complete chaplet.
For more Divine Mercy Resources see my previous posts:
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The feast of Saint Valentines Day is fast approaching. I thought this year I would like to make something fun with the kids to decorate the house. After the Christmas decorations come down each year the house feels a bit empty. So I thought why not make a fun wreath with the kids. So I came up with this super simple but fun craft. The best part is that it helps the kids learn their scripture verses too. I used a black and white printer but if you have access to a colour printer your craft could be even prettier!
Items Needed for this Craft:
- 1 piece of regular paper and 4 sheets of coloured construction paper
- Pencil Crayons or markers
- Print out of these sweet free scripture valentines cards from Country Charm by Tracy
- optional (stickers)
Step 1: Gather all your supplies and print out of these sweet free scripture valentines cards from Country Charm by Tracy
Tip:I enlarged the cards before printing them, so that they we easier to read.
Step 2: Cut out your Valentines scripture cards
Step 3: Fold a piece of regular paper in half and then fold it in half again. Draw half of a heart (approx. the size that you want your hearts to be but keep in mind large enough so that the scripture cards can still be glued on. Tip: you can place half the scripture card on the heart to make sure it will fit.) and then cut it out. You will have two hearts – test to make sure the scripture heart fits in the heart to give it the effect you would like.
Step 5: Glue the hearts together so that they form a circle/wreath.
Step 6: Glue one Valentines scripture card on each heart.
Step 7: Let your child decorate their Saint Valentines Day Wreath with sticker, glitter, markers, etc
Step 8: Admire your child’s wreath, hang it up and then read the scripture verses together.
My kids had a blast making their own wreaths. We have hung them on the same wall as our Saint Valentines Day Scripture Verse Count Down craft!
It is easy to make and looks sweet on the wall.
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Valentines Day is fast approaching. I enjoy celebrating this feast with my kids as it is a nice bridge between Christmas Season and Lent.We always enjoy celebrating our faith and the lives of the saints.
One of the best activities/crafts that I have found over the years to celebrate is this wonderful Free St. Valentines Day Scripture Count Down from Catholic Icing. It is a wonderful chain craft – you just make the chains and attach to the bottom of the heart. Starting on February 1st – each day you open one of the chains and read the scripture verse with your children. We then stick the verses to the side of the fridge and once St. Valentines Day has come, we read a verse from the fridge each day and then re-make the chain. This is perfect as it takes us through the month of February:)
The kids love making this craft and using it daily. My son liked it so much he made an extra Scripture count down craft to give as a gift to a friend this year!
For more St. Valentines activities see my previous post.
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During Advent I know a lot of parents are asking for activities to help teach their children the real meaning of Christmas. There are great Jesse Tree Ornaments to be made and lots of other wonderful activities. But I came across something a little different than I wanted to share.
There is a new sweet website called SightWords.com. It has free tools to help parents and educators teach sight words to kids from Pre-K to 4th Grade. With in this website there is a Christmas section with games and activities with a choice of sacred words for everyone of their activities! (http://www.sightwords.com/
These are great to do with the kids if your homeschooling, to supplement their education over school holidays or fun to put on the table as place mat activities for Christmas day! There are also some nice colouring pages and fun games for the kids too!
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One things my kids love is books. But they don’t just like anything. Each child has their own preference for topics, writing style, and their own favourites. With an age range of three to nine, finding a book they all enjoy can be a challenge at times. But one thing they all love is animals and bible stories.
So when Frank Fraser the author of The Bible Amigos Bible Series for kids contacted me to ask if I would like a copy of his two new books to read, I was very interested. Animals, a bible story and a valuable lesson all in one – it sounded a little too good to be true.
The day the books arrived my nine year old daughter had a friend over – everyone loves receiving something new in the mail. So they were both excited to look over the new books. Both girls really enjoyed the books – especially the illustrations. My daughter’s friend said “these are cool for big kids too!”. My nine year old said ” these books have a lot of activity in them and they teach a good lesson”. Being the little artist that she is she added “I REALLY like the drawings”.
When I read these books to my boys – which I have to admit I have now read them a lot. On the one occasion my son said “It is fun to read. I love it.” My three year old whom enjoys reading but not as much as my older kids whom are book worms, can’t get enough of these books. He has only ever had a handful of books that he wanted to read repetitively – well he wants to read them at bedtime and during the day. He doesn’t want to read one he wants to read both! Although my favorite of the two is Jonah and the Bear!
These stories are well written, with catchy little phrases, they share a bible story and end with a good moral message!
When my friend a mother of three babysat the one evening she had to read the books when she put my little guy to bed. First thing she wanted to know was where she could buy these books because she wanted them for her kids. So if your looking a book that is fun, has a good strong biblical message, one that can speak to varying ages. Then I recommend getting a copy of these lovely books. They are available for purchase at amazon.ca or amazon.com.
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My husband and I have a special devotion to the Divine Mercy. I just love praying this chaplet. I try to pray it every day. The thought of our Lord showering all His grace, love and mercy on me and the whole world is just so beautiful and amazing. I love praying this prayer each evening with my children when they are little as I nurse them and then nightly as they transition to a big kid bed and then to help settle them as they grow into their preschool years.
It is just a devotion I love. It is simple and easy to learn my kids have learned the chaplet and its prayers at a young age. It seems easier to memorize then the rosary and requires less time so it is easier for them to pray it.
Excepts from St. Faustina’s Diary
“Say unceasingly this chaplet that I have taught you. Anyone who says it will receive great Mercy at the hour of death. Priests will recommend it to sinners as the last hope.
Even the most hardened sinner, if he recites this Chaplet even once, will receive grace from My Infinite Mercy.
I want the whole world to know My Infinite Mercy.
I want to give unimaginable graces to those who trust in My Mercy….”
“….When they say this Chaplet in the presence of the dying, I
will stand between My Father and the dying person not as the just
judge but as the Merciful Savior”.
When my daughter was preparing for her Holy First Communion we would go on Mother-Daughter dates and work on making her scrapbook. We would create pages together after each lesson, to help reinforce her learning as we went along. After we had gone through her preparation, we started to add pages with prayers and devotions. I had created this simple Divine Mercy craft when I was helping to teach a three and four year old catechism class. So we decided to incorporate it into her scrapbook too.
Divine Mercy Chaplet Craft:
What you will need:
- Print out of Divine Mercy Colouring Page
- Red & Blue Construction paper
- Coloured pens, Markers or Crayons
- If available Gold marker or crayons
Step 1 - Print out of this wonderful Divine Mercy colouring page from the Oblates of Divine Mercy’s website
Step 2 – Cut out a red and a blue triangle. Helpful tip-First cut out the red triangle and then trace it on the blue paper so that they come out the same size.
Step 3 - Glue the Red Triangle on to Jesus’ Right and the Blue Triangle on to Jesus’ Left side.
Step 4 – Draw more rays of light coming from Jesus heart as well as add light around his head (gold, yellow & white work best)
Step 5 – Decorate as desired
There is also a great Divine Mercy word search and other colouring pages available at the Oblates of Divine Mercy’s website.
Learn how to make an easy Divine Mercy Chaplet with your child in my previous postView Post →
Today we celebrate the feast of our Lady of the Rosary. The month of October is traditionally celebrated as the month of the Holy Rosary! So the craft below is perfect to use any day in the month of October or May or anytime you wish to help your child learn how to pray the rosary.
My son has really taken to the rosary during the past few weeks. He is happy to pray the rosary where ever he might be – in the car, in bed, etc. But he keeps forgetting which prayers to say on which beads. So I thought we could make this craft to put on the wall beside his bed so that he can look at it when he forgets what comes next and start to learn it by heart. I have been eagerly waiting to use these beautiful images of The Virgin Mary from Around the World since the first time I saw them at Shining Light Dolls! So I was very excited we finally were able to use them today!
Learning the Rosary Craft!
Here is a PDF Instruction Sheet you can print for the Rosary Craft
What you will need:
- 3 pages printed out
- markers, crayons or pencil crayons
Step 1 Print out this beautiful image of The Virgin Mary Around the World from Shining Light Dolls- copy the image and paste it into a word document then print it centered and at the top of your page.
Step 2 Select an image of Mary that you would like to use for the bottom portion of your craft – We used Our Lady of China but there are so many other beautiful options to use from Shining Light Dolls too. Again using word you want to paste or insert the image. I used four Mary’s per a page. So you could even choose a different image of Mary for each child.
Step 3 Print this cute Rosary Page from Pinterest or for the full document visit Teachers pay Teachers. I printed two per a page.
Step 4 – Cut the sheets and place them in each child’s spot so that each child has one of each sheet.
Step 5 – Explain the feast of the rosary, talk about the Mary that you selected to use and then discuss the rosary asking questions as you go.
Step 6 -
A) Explain the Sign of the cross, have your child colour it and underline the words the Sign of the Cross in the same colour.
B) Explain when you pray the Our Father – have your child select a new colour and colour the two hearts in this colour and then underline the words Our Father in this same colour.
C) Explain when you pray the Hail Mary- have your child select a new colour and colour the Hail Mary Beads in this colour and then underline the words Hail Mary in this same colour (I also wrote 3 & 10 to let them know the number of times it is said).
D) Explain when you pray the Glory Be- have your child select a new colour and draw a circle to show when this is done. Write the words Glory Be in this same colour or write them in Black and underline them in the colour if you prefer;)
Step 7 – Glue the Cute Craft Sheet and Mary image below the Image of Our Lady from Around the World.
If you have time pray a decade or the rosary with your child now to reinforce their learning!
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This year I signed up for a great free email service the Divine Mercy Daily reflections from St. Faustina’s Diary. Many Catholic’s own the wonderful diary by St. Faustina. But upon speaking with people about the book I soon discovered that most people have not actually read the book from start to finish. I know a handful of people whom have actually read the whole book. I personally have tried a few times but have not yet accomplished this goal. So when a friend told me about theses daily emails I signed up for them. I am eager to finally read the entire diary in a year!
Each day I receive a nice short excerpt, as well as a prayer response. It is really a lovely addition to my daily routine.
If you have ever wanted to read St Faustina’s diary – I highly recommend that you sign up for this lovely free service from Flocknote!
Here is a sample of what you receive:
Entrust everything to Me and do nothing on your own, and you will always have great freedom of spirit. No circumstances or events will ever be able to upset you. Set little store on what people say. Let everyone judge you as they like. Do not make excuses for yourself, it will do you no harm (Diary, 1685) .
My Prayer Response:
Lord Jesus, help me to entrust every thing to You and do nothing on my own, so I will always have great freedom of spirit.
*Diary passages with bolded words are Jesus speaking
What is an Angel
An angel is a pure spirit created by God. The English word “angel” comes from the Greek angelos, which means ‘messenger’. For more information about angels see my previous post Feast of the Holy Angels.
My kids are super excited to have another tea party followed by crafts this afternoon. Each year for this special feast we have made lots of angels which we have used to decorate our home by hanging them off our dinning room light and displaying them on the wall.
Last year the kids made three to four angels each. They made St. Michael, St. Raphael, St. Gabriel and an angel to represent their guardian angel. They used a sword with St. Michael and came up with other symbols to represent the different angels. We then glued prayers onto some of the angels.
This craft is super easy to make and personalized as each child gets to trace and use their hands as the angels wings. The kids love tracing their hands hence why they each wanted to keep making more angels. I can’t think of a year when the kids only made one angel each. Here is my ANGEL Craft post with instructions.
Here are some prayers that you can include on the angels:
Angel of God,
my guardian dear,
To whom God’s love
commits me here,
Ever this day,
be at my side,
To light and guard,
Rule and guide. Amen.
PRAYER TO Saint Michael the Archangel
St. Michael the Archangel,
defend us in battle.
Be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the Devil.
May God rebuke him, we humbly pray,
and do thou,
O Prince of the heavenly hosts,
by the power of God,
thrust into hell Satan,
and all the evil spirits,
who prowl about the world
seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.
PRAYER TO Saint Gabriel
Blessed Saint Gabriel, Archangel We beseech you to intercede for us at the throne of divine mercy:
As you announced the mystery of the Incarnation to Mary,
so through your prayers may we receive strength of faith and courage of spirit,
and thus find favor with God and redemption through Christ Our Lord.
May we sing the praise of God our Savior with the angels and saints in heaven forever and ever. Amen.
Other Fun Crafts for the Feast of the Holy Angels:
List of sites with free printable or great easy ideas for crafts to do with kids on the feast of the angels:
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Today is just such a beautiful and special day. It is a day to celebrate an incredible women and soul. One who inspires me continuously to strive to do everything with more love, more joy and more smiles. St. Therese may have lived for 24 years but her example and love will live on forever.
Feast days are always such a fun way to bring joy and love into your home. Whom doesn’t love to celebrate – especially children? So today after school we will pull out our fancy fine china tea cups, our beautiful teapot from my sister and a delicious baked good (still need to make this lol). We will gather around talk about St Therese beautiful life, her example and how we can show love more in all that we do. Then after enjoying our goodies we will make some new crafts that I found for us.
Celery Rose Painting
Who doesn’t love pinterest – at the click of a few buttons you find so much inspiration. I found this adorable simple and fun painting to make – you simply need white paper, green & paint for the roses (red, purple, pink, yellow, and/or blue) paint, celery, scissors, and your imagination. You could even use coloured construction paper and use white paint instead for white roses. We will have a lot of fun making different variations with this idea. It is also a great craft from preschoolers to adulthood.
Here are some of the paintings we made at our tea party today after school!
St Therese Greeting and Prayer Cards
I found wonderful website this week that I just have to share its called Shining Light Dolls. This wonderful website offers lots of free cute and colourful Catholic Saint and Mary printable. These images will come in handy throughout the year – with all saints day coming up, birthdays, feasts. My head is just whirling with ideas to use these cute images with.
In past years 0ne craft that the kids and I have enjoyed making on the feast of St Therese is greeting cards which we mail out to grandparents, great grandparents, godparents and some aunts. After finding this lovely image of St Therese I know we will have to send this beautiful image out without greeting cards to family members with a special love of St Therese. We will print the image, print out beautiful quotes by St Therese and then glue them on coloured paper and personalize the cards.
One of my favourite quotes is: Without love, deeds, even the most brilliant, count as nothing. Story of a Soul, Chapter VIII
If you looking for a cute or special gift for a baptism or birthday Shining Light Dolls have adorable little dolls, charms and prayers cards too!
Another craft ideas is this adorable free St Therese paper doll. Paper Dali offers this free, cute printable, she even has a page of accessories with roses, a cross and the holy face of Jesus. I would recommend printing this on card stock if possible if not, I would colour the doll, then glue it to construction paper, let it dry and then cut out the doll so that it is stronger and lasts longer for your little girl!
A fun and wonderful activity to make for the feast of St. Therese, advent, lent, preparing for 1st Holy Communion, as a baptism gift or a catechism group activity is the St. Therese Good Deed/Sacrifice Beads. You can find instructions on how to Make the Good Deed/Sacrifice Beads here. What better way to teach the children how to offer up little acts of love throughout the day then by following little St. Therese own example as she did as a child. To the right is a picture of the beads used by St Therese when she was little. She used her beads faithfully each day as she prepared for her holy communion. What I love about St. Therese is that she offered Jesus the good too – ie she would eat her dinner and she would tell Jesus that the dessert was for him, she offered up her joy, not only her suffering. I think that this is an important step towards making your entire day and act of prayer and love as she strived to do daily.
Here is a link to an older post when we made a beautiful 3D Rose craft to celebrate the feast of St Therese.
If you have other craft ideas please share them in the comments below!