Our Mary Altar

May is one of my favorite months of the year. Everything is in bloom. There's an overwhelming sense of renewal and rejuvenation as we spring clean our homes and the world becomes warm and green again. Many Catholic churches are having May Crowning ceremonies to honor Mary. The second weekend of the month, we celebrate Mother's Day.

During the month of May, we celebrate mothers and most important, our Holy Mother Mary. During May, we don't just celebrate women who give birth, but also the culture of motherhood and those with a mothering heart. Our Holy Mother is such a powerful example of the spirit of motherhood! While the month is nearly half over, it is not too late to do something special to honor her and celebrate the gift and culture of motherhood. There are so many things you can do; both simple, on a daily basis, and ongoing!


3 medium cucumbers peeled and sliced in circles
1 medium sweet onion, sliced into thin pieces
3 medium tomatoes, cut into wedges
1/4 cup Distilled Vinegar
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4-1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 c. Apple Cider Vinegar

Directions: Combine all above ingredients into a large storage bowl with lid. Fill bowl with filtered water until ingredients are covered. Stir. Refrigerate overnight to allow it to marinate. Serve chilled. *If you'd like the salad to be more or less sour/tart, just add or take away from the amount of Apple Cider Vinegar/Distilled Vinegar listed. This recipe is perfect for summer picnics and potlucks!

Today we welcome a friend of mine named Julie. As a wife, mother, and grandmother, she has some wonderful insight and advice on the gifts we have as women and how we can use them to serve God and others!



We're in the dead of winter and if you're stuck in the Midwest like me, our winters feel sooooooooo long and cold! This soup is a comforting treat that will make you feel so good! There is no cream involved, yet this soup has a texture like a bisque.

This soup is loosely based on a pumpkin soup recipe that I tried years ago, but because I had a hard time finding pumpkin purée without any added sugars or preservatives in it, I used butternut squash instead. I also added a little more of this and a little more of that....and eventually this recipe came out of it. I hope you enjoy it! Another added plus is if you keep the spices and salt out, your baby might love it, too! Ours sure does!

This year, my husband and I are committing to complete at least one Catholic-themed book each month in hopes of broadening our knowledge of the Catholic faith and to find some gems of inspiration and encouragement. Here are the books we hope to cover. I will try and post a review as we complete each one. If you've read any of them, leave a comment as to why you liked or didn't like it!

January: Catholicism: A Journey to the Heart of the Faith by Bishop Robert Barron

February: Beautiful Mercy: Experiencing God's Unconditional Love So We Can Share It With Others by Pope Francis, Matthew Kelly, Cardinal Wuerl, Fr. Larry Richards, Fr. Michael Gaitley, and others

March: Intimate Graces: How Practicing the Works of Mercy Brings Out the Best in Marriage by Teresa Tomeo and Dominick Pastore

April: The Church of Mercy by Pope Francis

May: Something Other Than God: How I Passionately Sought Happiness and Accidentally Found It by Jennifer Fulwiler

June: The Protestant's Dilemma: How the Reformation's Shocking Consequences Point to the Truth of Catholicism by Devin Rose

July: Confessions of a Megachurch Pastor by Allen Hunt

August and September: Footprints in a Darkened Forest by Archbishop Fulton Sheen

October: Rediscover Jesus by Matthew Kelly

November: The Joy of the Gospel by Pope Francis

December: Advent of the Heart: Seasonal Sermons and Prison Writings 1941-44 by Alfred Delp, S.J.