Monday, April 20, 2015

The Pictures Nancy Left Behind

Without a word, he stretched his long arm behind her frame, which seemed particularly petite standing side by side with him. Gently his open palm came to rest on the small of her back. Sensing his touch, she leaned in, just slightly, toward his broad shoulder. They didn't speak in audible tones. Their attention was directed forward as mine should have been, but for some reason I was captivated by the tenderness of their moment.  

Friday, April 17, 2015

God Is Impatient: a teenager's reflection on the Why? of death

new life comes after winter' dying

Why? It's the question bouncing around my mind. Why?

Just as my pain becomes bearable, just as I feel like maybe I can start to go back to being the person I used to be, I hear the news. A beloved and wonderful mother, a parishioner of St. Joseph's Church, is expected to die, and tonight. Why? Why does death always seem to follow me? Why are the people we love so cruelly snatched away? Why aren't we allowed just a little bit longer with them?

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Indiana's Memories Pizza Owners Scored for the Right Team: Keeping Our Eyes on the Goal

Like a swarm of bumblebees that buzz one way and then the other, their little bodies bump and rub as they move in unison after the rolling target. The air is booming with commands, but the rush of adrenaline has rendered the players deaf. Just as some tense on-lookers bound from their seats, arms waving wildly, the pint-sized leader boldly takes the perfect shot straight into the goal. The proud victor beaming, he turns to receive the expected praise. But all his fans can muster are feigned smiles and wagging heads because the happy player, who'd forgotten his team's colors, has just scored a goal for the OPPOSITION.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Bird Song: a poem by Sasha Brelinsky

I suppose writing is in the blood here in Brelinskyville. My daughter, Sasha Terese, wrote this poem recently for a poetry contest being held at our local library.

Bird Song

Up in a tree,
on his brown seat,
out of his throat,
comes a soft tweet.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Wasting Our Treasure on Christ: A Meditation on the Woman with the Alabaster Jar

Michelangelo Caravaggio 063.jpg
Michelangelo Caravaggio

Shortly after having given birth to my first darling daughter and fourth child, someone suggested that I seek employment working with special needs children. I hadn't been soliciting advice or job hunting, but I guess the messenger found it reasonable to imply that we should move beyond baby-making seeing as we'd finally managed to have that elusive girl-child and that our dream of having a large family had been fulfilled (according to societal standards).

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Never Stop Dating Your Spouse: Local Date Night Ideas

Triangle Date Ideas...On A Dime Raleigh Moms Blog

Once upon a time my sweetheart and I used to date each other. At about 4 o’clock on a Friday, we’d throw together plans to grab a beer at the karaoke bar, get a bite to eat at our favorite local restaurant or catch the latest Hollywood blockbuster playing in the theater.

Then along came children, one by one, transforming our tiny, self-indulgent circle. Suddenly, our unscheduled opportunities vanished. Every outing now required careful planning and multi-party coordination. There were babysitters to line up, a diaper bag to stock, budgetary constraints to consider and a clock to watch. I have to admit that for the better part of a decade we set dating aside
READ the whole article HERE

Failing to Be Sensitive to a Child's Differences

Embracing Different Learning Styles

“Why? Why didn’t she just follow my example? Why hadn’t she been able to figure it all out just the way I wanted her to,” I considered. I didn’t resort to yelling, but my disappointment was probably clear as I began pointing out her mistakes. She asked to be excused from the project and I obliged. Seeing as the ornaments were part of the fund raising, I had to jump back in and complete the task myself. It took me the latter part of the night which provided me ample quiet time (okay, when I say quiet time in a household of ten I mean internal quiet) to think about what had just taken place at that counter top.

A bit of guilt poked me as I considered my daughter’s glassy eyes... READ the whole article HERE

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

A Mangy Cat and the Mercy of God

The mews from beneath our trailer instigated some investigation. Following the faint cries, my husband crawled under the mobile house and emerged with a tiny kitten in hand. Unaware that a mother cat had chosen the underside of our home as her birthing place, we were even more surprised to find she'd left this furry offspring behind.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Catholic Conference 4 Moms Available for Purchase

 This post contains affiliate links

Did you attend the 2015 Catholic Conference 4 Moms? Want to listen again to those inspiring talks or perhaps hear the ones you missed? Is there another mama you just know would benefit from a little mini-conference? Looking for some guided discussions for your Mother's Morning Out group or co-op gathering? 

Now you can have it all in one place, all 27 talks from this year's conference, plus a bundle of extras. 

The whole conference is on sale for $39.99, but if you use my discount code BRELINSKYVILLE you can purchase all 27 presentations plus the bonuses for just $29.99.

Here's just a few of the bonus items you will receive with your discounted purchase:


Catholic Vegetarian Rocks Dinner for Twelve: 20 Meatless Menus with a Side of Humor Ebook by Celeste Behe 
$8.95 value
The 2015 Conference Discussion Guide  This Discussion Guide contains questions and discussion starters for every presentation.  It is the easiest way to get your mom's discussion group talking.  Simply show one of the videos, handout the questions to your group leaders, and you've got the perfect mom's meeting--simple, meaningful, and inspirational.


The Mysteries of the Rosary with Kelly Saints Craft Kit includes 34 pages of templates including
$13.00 value

To see all of the bonus items (which includes 3 more books, 4 Catholic Foodie Podcasts and 3 valuable coupons) and to order your discounted copy of the conference head on over to CatholicConference4Moms 
and select the Purchase Conference option at the top of the page. Then be sure to use the discount code BRELINSKYVILLE 
to receive $10 off your purchase.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Pop Up Something Yummy: Home Made Pop Tart Recipe

My kiddos like Pop Tarts, but the only time we ever buy them is when we'll be cooped up in the van for an all day (or two) road trip. Convenient and tasty treats hand-held treats, nutritionally the commercial variety can leave a bit to be desired. So, when I stumbled across a recipe 5 years ago I thought I'd try my hand at making home made pop tarts. However, those that know me know I don't cook. My kitchen skills consist of cookies, brownies and a rare cake; therefore, it has taken 5 years for me to actually give the recipe a turn in the kitchen.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

A Stranger's Gift and Adam's Lasting Memory

Eleven o'clock on a Saturday, I found myself doubling back through the church parking lot in a frantic attempt to secure a spot for our big family van. Anticipating sparse attendance, I had left home with a bare minimum of time to spare, but from the looks of the overflowing lot my assumption had been wrong. Conceding a legitimate space was no where to be found, I stopped the engine beside a landscaping bed and ushered my children out.

Seconds after we'd crossed the social hall, someone swung open the heavy church door allowing the music to escape. Like a punch to the gut, the cantor's familiar

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Teaching Children to Make Healthy Choices

Teaching Kids Smart Choices Raleigh Moms Blog Feature Image

Wide eyed, my sons would drift down the cereal aisle. Enamored with the brightly colored boxes and cartoon characters, they’d point their chubby fingers and ask, “Can we get this one? How ’bout that one?” Much to their disappointment, when our oldest were little ones my husband was adamant that we not buy those sugary treats passed off as breakfast cereal. Trained as a chef, he taught them how to read labels and discern the better options, but that didn’t completely curb their desire for those off-limits brands wrapped in enticing packages with promises of prizes inside.

As so often happens when you’ve been parenting numerous children for more than a decade, we’ve made some concessions along the way. My husband still prides himself on providing us healthy choices and nutrient rich meals, but he’s allowed a few ‘fun’ options into the wobbly-wheeled grocery cart. In order to satisfy the kids and uphold a standard, he got creative...

Read the rest of this post HERE on Raleigh Moms Blog were I'm a contributing author.

Monday, February 16, 2015

3 Simple, Kid-Friendly Ideas To Make This Your Best Lent Ever

With Lent starting this coming Ash Wednesday, I was brainstorming some creative ways to help my brood focus during this penitent season. As of late, it seems we're all a bit off-track in our household so Lent offers us a renewed opportunity to recommit our minds and hearts to serving Christ. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Join me at the Catholic Conference 4 Moms
"What are you doing for Lent?" she asked just after the van door rolled shut. Last night was Moms' Night Out and I was transporting a few of my favorite ladies from one location to another when I overheard the question. Too focused on driving through the rain in the dark, I didn't exert too much mental energy on the topic. But this morning seemed a better time to revisit the query with greater intention.

There were the years I tried to give up chocolate which were certainly sacrificial for me (and everyone who was unfortunate enough to cross my path during those moments). Maybe coffee? I do like my decaf every morning, but it probably wouldn't hurt much to exchange it for tea. As a family we cut back on our media consumption last year, but that worked so well that I would hardly notice a blank TV screen and trying to grow a blog without social media would be akin to quitting your job while hoping to get a promotion.

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Now That You Know the Facts on Birth Control, What's the Next Step? Part 6 of 6

children are a gift from God

In part 1 of this discussion on rethinking your birth control, I defined what it means to be a woman. Not just a modern woman, but a whole woman according to God's design. Part 2 detailed attributes of her feminine genius in the form of female fertility. The cyclic ebb and flow of her fertile and infertile phases and the means by which she is able to read her own body language. The next two installments detailed how contraceptives help fracture womanhood into parts, many attacking female health by suppressing natural hormones and inducing early abortions. Uncovered also was the dishonesty of pharmaceutical companies and the pressure placed on women by medical providers. Fear being a major factor for couples new to Natural Family Planning, I spoke about the need for couples to address their concerns in part 5. Knowledge is power, as they say, and I think (if you've been following along) I've covered a fair amount of ground so where do we go from here?
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