Friday, April 29, 2011

Freebie Friday: Catholic Lesson Planner for Homeschooling plus Divine Mercy Sunday ideas from Catholic Icing!

Look what I found: a free Catholic Lesson Planner for Homeschoolers! Yipee! Just what I needed! (I am SO disorganized! Waaah. How are we ever going to "formally start" homeschooling?!) Need to get me a printer now! Bwahahaha. To download the Planner, please go to this link. :-)

Also, since it's Divine Mercy Sunday this Sunday, hop on over to Lacy's blog at Catholic Icing for some wonderful ideas for Divine Mercy and St. Faustina crafts and activities! :-)

Also this Sunday, our beloved Pope John Paul II will be beatified! Check out this link for ideas on how to commemorate this wonderful occasion! :-)

Last but not the least, MAY is Mama Mary's month! :-) Lacy has come up with some great ideas for that as well. Check them out here!

Happy Homeschooling to us all! :-) (And LORD, please grant this homeschooler the organization and peace of mind and patience she needs to accomplish all she needs to do! Amen!)

Sunday, April 24, 2011

What Kids Should Know About Easter

Easter is THE most important time of the year for us Christians, even more important than Christmas. Sadly though, many people, Catholics and Christians included, often forget about this, and get lost in the hype of Easter egg hunts and chocolate bunnies. Personally, we do not claim to be the perfect Catholic parents, but we hope and pray that our kids will grow up to treasure the wonders and miracles of the Resurrected Lord, and believe in the enduring, saving power of the Cross.

This Easter Sunday, and the succeeding 49 days of Easter after it, may we who are in the ministry of raising up and teaching children (parents, teachers, aunts, uncles, grandparents, KFC facilitators, kids ministers, big brothers and sisters, etc etc) remember to teach our kids that Easter is all about the Lamb, not the rabbit (the customs of which incidentally, is rooted in pagan traditions). 

Here are a few links to help you understand more about why JESUS is the reason for this great and blessed season, and how you can teach your kids about it:

From the Bible Conversation blog: "Is Believing in the Easter Bunny and Jesus the Same?"

From Grant's Graceland: 
Top Ten Reasons Why Jesus is WAY BETTER Than the Easter Bunny!

From Catholic Icing: Religious Easter Ideas For Kids (It's not TOO LATE to do this, Easter lasts for 50 days you know!)

Feel free to share! May the Risen LORD always be in our hearts this Easter and beyond! A blessed, beautiful, bountiful Easter to all!

Rysse "helping " Tim prepare their Resurrection Eggs (idea taken from Catholic Icing)
Tim concentrating on the Resurrection Eggs
The finished product!
Preparing the Last Supper Craft (from Catholic Icing) for Holy Thursday
A cool Catholic way to practice kids' scissors skills
Retelling the Resurrection Story with Catholic Icing's easy-to-do Resurrection Set (Tim can't get enough of it, he keeps asking us to retell it!)
Kids and their Resurrection Set (May your patron saints Timothy and Therese guide you!)
Happy to hear the story of Jesus rising from the dead
(Oops.. forgot this one!) The Last Supper/Holy Thursday craft by Tim and Mama ♥

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Tim and his "Love Land"

While walking to the gate on Holy Tuesday, Tim starts telling me about an adventure he and his (imaginary) pets had. They were in a place full of "bad guys, enemies and bad people" (Grr... Cartoon Network and Disney Channel - I loathe you! This is partly why we moved to our own place, hehe!). I was trying to listen intently while babywearing Rysse, holding Tim's hand and watching the road for oncoming traffic when something Tim said made me stop in dismay.

Tim: "Then I made the bad guys dead."

Whoa! My 4 year old talking about "making people dead"?!! Waaah. What kind of a mom am I?!

But then he said something else.

Tim: "But then.. God helped me.. And the land became Love Land. The bad guys grow (*we're still working on proper tenses with Tim, hehe), and became good guys. They were kind na and good." (I can't really recall his exact words. hehe)

So a lightbulb went on in my head. AHA! Perfect time to introduce Jesus' saving love and mercy, esp. with the Holy Triduum coming up.

Me: "You know Tim, that's what Jesus does too. He doesn't make us dead, but He makes the bad things we think, say and do dead. Then He fills us up with LOVE. That's how much He loves us. Remember in your book, He died on the Cross and rose again because He loves us?"

Tim: "I know that already, Mama."

*Sighs* This Holy Week, it's time for me to reflect more on how we are raising our kids, and be thankful for God's saving grace. May we all do our part to make this world a "Love Land" for all. Blessed Holy Week everyone!
Image taken from

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Lenten Activities For Preschoolers PLUS Holy Week Crafts We Plan To Do

Sharing with you this article I wrote for the Smart Parenting Philippines' website (they published it rather late in my opinion.. hehehe... but still.. I hope this helps you!). Also, I'm posting the links to the Holy Week crafts from Catholic Icing that we are going to do.. I am still gathering materials, but I hope we could start doing them tomorrow, Holy Wednesday. Have a blessed Holy Week everyone! :-) Remember.. JESUS is the reason for Easter, not the Easter Bunny! :-) *winks*

Lenten Activities For Preschoolers

Lent is the best time to introduce your little ones to the joy of Easter and how to prepare for the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection.  They may not fully understand the concepts of fasting, abstinence, and almsgiving, but it’s never too early to teach our kids about these things. 

For a more meaningful Lent for you and your little ones, try the following activities:

1.    Prepare a “Sacrifice Storage Area”. 
Ask your child to choose something that he would like to give up for Lent and let him keep it inside a special box or other container that can act as a “Sacrifice Storage Area.”  He may choose a favourite book or toy or DVD. Set a good example for him by also choosing something that you will be putting in the “Sacrifice Box.” 

As much as possible, get other members of the family to do the same as well, no matter what their ages. Explain that we make sacrifices during Lent as a sign of our love for God, and to learn to appreciate the sacrifice that Jesus made for us.

On Easter Sunday, prepare a simple but meaningful ceremony where each member of the family gets to take out their “sacrificial item” from the Storage Area and say a Thanksgiving prayer.

2.    Make an Offering Box.
Using a makeshift “alkansya”, our family sets aside money during Lent which we will be offering on Easter Sunday to a charitable institution of our choice (most probably, it will be Bo Sanchez’s Grace To Be Born Maternity Home and Nursery, which caters especially to pregnant mothers in crisis).

Making an offering box is a great way to teach your kids about sharing your resources and material blessings with others. Tell your child that instead of spending excessively on things that you don’t need in the first place, donating money will help others in need. 

Tim and his offering box
It would also be good to note that teaching our children acts of generosity is something we should do not only during Lent, but all throughout the year.

3.    Make a Lenten Cross.
This easy-to-do craft will give you an opportunity to teach your children about prayer and thankfulness. This idea is taken from the Domestic Church website and is a fun way to get your preschooler to practice her scissor skills under your supervision. 

First, draw cross patterns on a cardboard then have your kids cut them out.  Make sure you have enough space on the cross for pictures.  Next, let the children cut out small pictures from magazines, old brochures and other glossy printed material of things that they are thankful for and glue them on the cross.  Talk to them about the images on the pictures that they have glued on the cross and encourage them to be grateful for all the good things you have in your life. 

Teach your kids about the Power of the Cross and the Love of the Savior!

You may want to display their Lenten cross crafts in a prominent part of your home, like on the fridge or the kids’ room as a reminder to pray and be thankful for all He has given us.

4.    Make a Spiritual Bouquet of Prayer Petal Flowers.
This is another great idea from Domestic Church, and is a creative way to build your children’s devotion to the Rosary, one decade at a time! 

Using colorful paper, cut out a series of flower petals, stems and leaves for each person taking part in the Rosary. There should be one stem (representing the Mystery), ten petals (representing the Hail Marys), one little circle or centre for each flower (representing the Our Father) and one leaf (representing the Glory Be).

As you pray, glue the “flower parts” that correspond to the prayer until you complete one flower. 

When you do this daily and all the decades are said, you and your kids will end up with a wonderful collection of flowers – a spiritual bouquet of prayer petal flowers. You could offer the prayers each day for a specific person or group, and give them the completed flowers as a colourful and meaningful gift.

5.    Learn about the Stations of the Cross.
The Stations of the Cross is another beautiful devotion that we can teach to our children. It is a good way for them to learn about the events that led to Jesus’ crucifixion, death and resurrection. There are many resources available online for teaching the Stations to your kids. Here are several useful links to help you get started:

Online Stations of the Cross for Kids and Families
Family Stations of the Cross from
An article from the Passionists on Teaching the Stations of the Cross to Children
Multimedia Stations of the Cross for Children from Loyola Press

The most important thing to remember about these Lenten activities is that they will have greater significance when parents do them together with their kids. Find time together with your kids and make your bonding moments even more meaningful by enriching your family life AND faith all at the same time.

And now for the links from Catholic Icing (and linkys from other blogs/sites featured there) ! :-)

We plan to do these: (I am hoping to do all of them! Quite ambitious for a disorganized mama like me, but with God all things are possible, right?!)

Holy Thursday - Last Supper CraftPraying Hands Craft and Washing of the Feet

Good Friday - Stations of the Cross Coloring Activity and Loyola Press' Stations of the Cross for Kids

Holy Saturday and Easter Sunday - Resurrection Eggs, Easter Countdown Calendar, Printable Resurrection Set

Thank the LORD for moms like Lacy who are SO gifted creatively and SO hardworking in putting up posts like these! Super helpful for clueless Teacher Mamas like me! :-) hehehe. Here's to a blessed blessed Holy Week and an even more blessed Easter everyone! :-)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

HAPI Road Show At The Medela House

I wanted to post this earlier but I was caught up with writing and editing jobs, plus I felt really sick over the weekend. Thank GOD though I am feeling better now, and the kids have gotten better too. Thanks to all who prayed for us! :-)

Despite feeling under the weather and my many pending articles (I really should learn more time management skills! Either that or drop off the kids at my parents when I need to work straight hours! hehe), I managed to go to the HAPI Roadshow last Saturday at the Medela House. Teacher Mommy Blessie and her hubby Neil were so kind to let Rysse and I hitch with them (yes, I brought her along, and she was very behaved thank God!). Tim and his Papa had a "boys' morning out" and watched Rio together.

Anyway, I am SO HAPPY that I got to attend the Road Show. Aside from seeing Ate Rita from CFA (I have adopted her as my "unofficial mentor" hahaha!) and my soul sistah Martine, I got to take a tour around the Medela House and learned something new (home education is NOT the same as home study!). I also got to meet Jenn, who had e-mailed me before about homeschooling and breastfeeding (they use CHC! Too bad I didn't tell her I was coming, she had offered to bring some of their materials for me to check out.) Of course, the ride with Mommy Blessie was very refreshing, as we got to chat about our kids, writing, and homeschooling. :-)

As I am rushing this post (have to wash the door mats that Rysse peed on, before she and her Kuya wake up! Yep, it's potty training time in our house!), I will let the pictures speak for me. :-) I'll try to revise this post later on. :-) Happy to be with HAPI! :-)

Scholastic was there too. They had some nice books on sale, too bad I didn't bring any extra cash!

That's Ate Rita and.. umm.. momnesia strikes again! Sorry! Talking to Maricel Cua of Medela Moms (who is also homeschooling her almost 5 year old! How cool is that! We're both pro-breastfeeding and homeschooling moms! They have no formal curriculum yet, but she plans to use Kolbe.)

Martine in action

Icebreaker: Longest list of homeschooling tools. :-) Our group lost, but I got to take home one of the prizes anyway, a copy of Junior magazine. Thanks to Mommy Blessie, who gave me her extra copy (she and hubby Neil were on the same winning team).


HAPI's President (?) Jerry ____ (told ya, it's momnesia again! Haay).

Irma talking about the Homeschoolers Got Talent Fair :-) Coming soon in May!

Bambi.. (I think?! hahaha) talking about HAPI's initial meeting with DepEd

Presentation prepared by Martine :-) Very helpful!

LOVE the study, work and serve approach of CFA! :-)

Rysse sleeping on my lap :-) hehe.

Ate Rita sharing about the benefits of homeschooling to her family: closeness with the kids even until teenage years, strong and solid values for the kids, deep faith in God :-)

Medela's Maricel Cua :-) Fellow pro-breastfeeding, homeschooling, hands-on parenting, mompreneur :-) We're going to plan a Natural Family Planning seminar to be held at Medela House soon! :-) Yehey!
Here are some pics of the Medela House, taken when Maricel gave me a brief tour. I LOVE IT! :-) Hope to visit again soon. :-) Wish I could come up with a House like this, where we could have seminars and products related to our own advocacies. :-)

Informative picture of the Anatomy of The Lactating Breast

I love this altar that greets you when you walk inside Medela House! :-)


Diaper bags and educational toys on display

Yaya scrubs and nursing wear 

More nursing wear

Breastfeeding pillows and more mommy-friendly bags

Cycles and Cradle products and cute onesies

Medela products on display. The room where they are located is also the demo room, where moms can try the products.

A variety of mompreneur products - slings, pouches, prenatal education system, memory keepers, malunggay products, By Nature soaps, etc etc

And of course, Mommy Treats! :-) (Incidentally, I sell these too!)
If you want to visit the Medela House, feel free to get in touch with Medela Moms:
MedelaMoms, Inc. – Ms. Maricel Cua and Ms. Beng Feliciano
Medela House:  29 1st Street, New Manila, Quezon City (near corner of Gilmore Ave.)
Tel. Nos.: (632) 725-3723; (632) 738-6272

Mobile No.:  +63917-5614366
Email: or

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