Wednesday, August 27, 2014

My weekly letter to my ladies

Here is my weekly letter. :)

Hello Ladies,

We are all so busy right now, getting our kids ready for school. Tis the season, but one that seems to have come rather quickly this year. It seems that we rush around getting supplies, going to open houses, meeting teachers, listening to all the groaning and complainants about the early mornings and school routine. In the rush of it all, I sometimes forget that I am sending my babies back into "the world". It has been especially clear to me this year how soon they will be gone. My oldest boy is a JUNIOR in HIGH SCHOOL! Seriously I have so little time to finish preparing him for all that he will have to defend himself against.

Maybe it is because all my children are older and so close to leaving the nest, that I am worrying so much more. Satan wants our children. I don't know if you have noticed, but they just come out of the womb stronger and more stubborn than I have ever seen before. And Satan is fighting tooth and nail for our babies. One of his greatest tools of destruction is the plague of pornography. We have been told by our leaders that this is a plague that will sweep the earth. I was staggered to learn that the "average age of exposure and addiction is 11 years old. 11! Studies have shown that 100% of today's teen will have been exposed to pornography by the time they are 18. Mostly while doing homework on the Internet"(September Ensign Healing Hidden Wounds). And it doesn't seem to matter if you are LDS or not. Your children will be exposed.

My heart breaks at the thought. I am married to a computer guy. And we work diligently to keep our home safe. But my children won't always be in our home, they won't have the filters that we have put in place. So how do I help them grain their own internal filter? Elder Christofferson taught this..."There could never be enough rules so finely crafted as to anticipate and cover every situation...In the end, it is only an internal moral compass in each individual that can effectively deal with the root causes as well as the symptoms of societal decay." (Moral Discipline)  Our Heavenly Father is well aware of what we are facing. And He has given us his Son, Jesus Christ, and the Atonement as the greatest tool for combating Satan that we have. It is in that infinite Atonement that we can change and heal and become new.

I know that so many of you have been touched by this plague. Husbands, wives, sons, and daughters. No one is truly exempt. For we live in a fallen world. I have felt very strongly of late that it was something that I needed to bring up here in this forum. We and our children are living on the front lines. May we ever be vigilant living in this world, not become part of the world. Heavenly Father needs us out there. If you are dealing with this plague in your home, there is help. Their is freedom from the bondage that it brings. At the bottom will be some links that you may find helpful. We also have a wonderful addiction recovery program that meets in our buildings every week. You are never alone.

I love you and pray for you always.

Stacie Catanzaro
CDA 2nd Ward Relief Society

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Every Moment

Marc and I got to run away for 24 hours this weekend. And it was such a wonderful time for us. We have never (nope no honeymoon for us) gone anywhere like this before. After 17 1/2 years, I think it was past time. So you'll get to see a lot of Marc and me in the pictures, because we were the only ones there!!
 We were able to do a temple session before we headed to our hotel. It has been a few months since Marc and I have been able to go together. So that's why we were all dressed up on a Friday afternoon.
 We stayed at the historic Davenport Hotel. It is so pretty and I love the history. Marc was a sport, wandering around with my while I looked at the walls, moldings, ceiling, and anything else that was fascinating to me.
 This is were we first came into the hotel.
 Here is the main lobby area. It is actually a dinning room for one of the restaurants in the hotel.
 On our way up the elevator. Happy to be here. Poor Marc got his picture taken A LOT!
 Ta-Da! Our room. This was the most comfortable mattress I have ever slept on, hotel or otherwise. It was so nice to be comfy away from home.
 The room even came with robes! LOL Never seen that before.
 Marc and I decide we need to put one of these showers in our bathroom at home. No having to worry about the shower curtain sticking to our sides in this baby.
 Our hotel was only 2 block from the Riverfront Mall, so I took Marc out to a movie there. While we were waiting for it to start, we did some window shopping. We found grumpy cat. This picture make me laugh and smile. It was so special to spend time not worrying about anything else and just enjoying our time.
 This was the sight that greeted us on the way back from the movie.
 Good Morning, Spokane. This is the view from our room. We were on the 7th floor. We even had to use our room key in the elevator to get to our floor.
 The Palm Garden is one of the restaurants in the hotel. We are going to take mom out to lunch here in between her surgery's.
 Talk about ambiance while eating.
 Marc wanted me to get this shot, so you could see how big these vases are.
 On the upstairs of that main room, they have other wonderful rooms that you can explore. One of them is the Doges Room and this is on the way up the stair case to that room.

 Here it is! It was spectacular. They just don't make things like this anymore.
 You can't see it very well, but the ceiling was covered with painting.
 It was so cool. :)
 This is the upstairs of the Marie Antoinette ball room. It was totally amazing.I took a panorama shot. But none of them really does any of it justice.
I am sure I came home glowing. Marc make me truly happy and I am so blessed that he is here in my life. He's not perfect, but he mine and I know that we have now into eternity to get it right.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Can hardly sit still...

(My awesome sauce sister-in-law Meggan Catanzaro too this picture. You can see her blog here.)

I am so excited!! Marc and I get to go away for 24 hours, by ourselves!! We are going to do a temple session and then go to a nice hotel in Spokane for the night. No kids, no phones, no nothing but relaxing with my wonderful man. :)

Monday, August 18, 2014

Strictly I'll Obey

In our church, we have a women's organization called Relief Society. It encompasses all the women in our church. In our ward, I am what is call the Relief Society President. This means I have stewardship over the women who are within the boundaries of our congregation. I pray for them, make sure they are cared for, help to spiritually lead them to Christ, and help them with their general welfare. They are "my" ladies.

Part of how I do this is by writing a weekly email that goes out to my Relief Society ladies. Especially during the summer, I find it hard to keep in touch with them and I want them to know that I am thinking about them. As I have started writing here again, using this as my journal of sorts, I wanted to put up that weekly email here so that I have a record of my thoughts and inspiration.

Here is this weeks post:

Good Morning Ladies,

So this week has definitely been a better week. I'm so blessed with the love of my family and friends. I am also blessed to have the perspective the gospel gives me. So that when I get beaten by life I can know were to turn for peace and rejuvenation.

I went to church early and had a few moments before our service began to listen to a speaker from the other ward. This sister was a return missionary. She said this.

 "Obedience to the commandments brings blessings, strict obedience brings miracles." 

It was the motto of their mission. But it felt like Heavenly Father was talking to me. I had not really thought about the distinction between the two types of obedience. I know over the last few weeks I had not been strictly obedient to those things that anchor me.

Elder Perry spoke on obedience in this last conference. He said this..."Strong, proactive obedience is anything but weak or passive. It is the means by which we declare our faith in God and qualify ourselves to receive the powers of heaven. Obedience is a choice. It is a choice between our own limited knowledge and power, and God’s unlimited wisdom and omnipotence." (April 2014 Conference)

I know I need God's unlimited wisdom and omnipotence. I am can be so weak and selfish sometimes, wrapped in my own world. I am human. So this week I will work at the strict obedience that will bring miracles into my life. I want to be one of Heavenly Fathers Masterpieces.

Stacie Catanzaro
CD'A 2nd Ward Relief Society President

Friday, August 15, 2014

Celtic Autumn

     This spring I finished my Celtic Summer cross stitch. She came out so pretty. She's all framed up and hanging in my house. It is the first cross stitch I have made for myself. Well there are four seasons, so that means there are 4 ladies! I have really wanted to do the others and got myself together enough to get the patterns for the other three. YEA!
So I started my second Lady the first part of August. I'm doing the Celtic Autumn Lady and am making good progress. I'm trying to keep track of how long it takes me so you'll be seeing more of these posts in the futures.
 This is where I am at tonight. I got into the bodice and get to work on the hair next.The "holes" are were the beads will go when I turn over to that part of the stitching. I love to do this type of work.
Nana said it best. This is how I paint with thread. :)

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Girls Camp

Tuesday afternoon until yesterday afternoon, I went as the second leader for our YW's make-up girls camp. The leader that was supposed to go, got sick. Marc was also the second priesthood leader for that same time period and so it was nice to be with him. Nik watched the younger boys and they did really well. Me, not so much.

I am not much of a camper these days and certainly not with a bunch of girls. I know I am a girl, but I was never that giggly, silly girl. There was never the time for it. I can remember when I was that age, going on a trip with the YW, needing to stay in a motel and getting so fed up by 1 in the morning of them not shutting up, that I dragged my blanket into the bathroom, turned on the fan and slept in the tub.

So I just don't get it. So I just kept quiet and tried not to get in the way. I did surprise my daughter. She thought I did really good. I guess, I just felt really out of place. I'm glad I served and did what needed to be done. But I certainly wouldn't volunteer, if I can help it.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Mint Green

Hannah is off to her make up girls camp, Nik is out working with grandpa, Marc is in his office and the younger boys are sleeping and reading. So that means my house is quiet. It's the good kind of quiet that is restful and comforting. Not the kind that starts to drive you batty because the quiet has gone on too long. It is funny that things can be that way. That really can have too much of a good thing.  That anything after too long gets old and that if you are too set in your ways, you stop growing.

Life has been so chaotic lately that quiet seemed like a distant dream. But here we are enjoying this moment. I got a new dress this week and it ended up being way to big. Thankfully my mom taught me how to sew and I fixed it to fit. Here's the picture. Its a mint green.