Friday, October 26, 2007

Dr. Ray Guarendi Speaking Tomorrow!

Dr. Ray Guarendi is a host of the Catholic KATH 910AM radio show "The Doctor Is In," as well as a clinical psychologist, author and father of 10. Tomorrow he will be presenting a lecture on parenting entitled “Parental Survival Course: Turning Trials to Triumphs” at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Keller. Mass begins at 8am with the presentation following at 9am until 12pm. Tickets can be purchased at the church the day of the event and admission is $10 a piece or $20 per family.

St. Elizabeth Anne Seton Church is located at
2016 Willis Lane in Keller, Texas.

"The Doctor Is In" can be heard found on 910AM on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 12pm until 1pm.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

My First Niece!!!

After three nephews from my brother Scooter, I finally have a little niece!!! Her formerly Top Secret name is Lauren Avery, and she was born 7lbs 15oz, and 19in at 12:45pm, with a head full on beautiful brown locks. I can't wait for all the tea parties, dress up and all the other wonderfully feminine frills!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Pictures from Ed and Katy's Wedding

Here are the pictures of Angela, Lydia, Phillip and I, from Ed and Katy's Wedding. It was great fun and fellowship. Thanks to Fr. Allen for letting us stay at St. Francis with friends so late into the night. We know that Ed and Katy will be very happy. Watch out Lydia, you're next!!!

Friday, October 19, 2007

The Duggars on the Today Show

One thing that I find amazing is the overwhelming joy that Michelle, the Duggars' mother, emits. I love how both times she is asked about having more children she immediately responds "yes," without any hesitation or reservation. The Duggars have great courage not only to homeschool, but more importantly that God will provide for them as they follow His will; this is why Michelle and her husband are my heroes.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

Today is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day so please take a little time to pray for those Holy Innocents lost to abortion, early infant death and miscarriage, as well as thank God for His unfailing mercy. I would especially appreciate prayers for the soul of my sister, Hannah Abigail.

The following is a prayer from St. Faustina that I found appropriate:

O Greatly Merciful God, Infinite Goodness, today all mankind calls out from the abyss of its misery to Your mercy - to Your compassion, O God; and it is with its mighty voice of misery that it cries out. Gracious God, do not reject the prayer of this earth's exiles! O Lord, Goodness beyond our understanding, Who are acquainted with our misery through and through, and know that by our own power we cannont ascend to You, we implore You: anticipate us with Your grace and keep on increasing Your mercy in us, that we may faithfully do Your holy will all through our life and at death's hour. Let the omnipotence of Your mercy shield us from the darts of our salvation's enemies, that we may with confidence, as Your children, await Your final coming - that day known to You alone. And we expect to obtain everything promised us by Jesus in spite of all our wretchedness. For Jesus is our Hope: Through His merciful Heart, as through an open gate, we pass through to heaven. Amen

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Such a Touching Message

This commercial is awesome and has a great pro-life message. Thank you Exspectantes Beatam Spes for bringing it to my attention.

Gender Roles of Desperate Housewives and the Instilment of Catholic Family Values

This essay is from a Women's Roles in Television class I took last summer. I appreciate all comments and feedback. Happy reading!

Gender Roles of Desperate Housewives and the Instilment of Catholic Family Values

Following the end of WWII, the people of the United States began reconstructing normalcy and their way of life before Pearl Harbor. This restoration of the American dream was undertaken in part through the return of previously industrious women back into the home, increased consumerism, and a re-welcoming of traditional gender roles.

During WWII a change occurred, a need to replenish a depleted workforce out weighed the social norms that viewed women in the workplace as objectionable. When the need for wartime production subsided and soldiers returned home, however, the recently, professionally trained and self-sufficient women were escorted back to their, sometimes, mundane lives. Those women who were wives and mothers reassumed their household chores of cooking, cleaning and caring for children. Others with new and old sweethearts looked forward to getting married and having a family of their own. With the confusion and unknowing that accompanied D-day, the population’s focus turned to family and the baby bomb shortly followed. All of these events were desperate efforts to rebuild lives disheveled by war.

Television also aided the reestablishment of women’s original identity in the home. With the invention of new improved appliances along with diverse modern kitchen utilities, there were more advertisement opportunities for radio, television and magazines. In turn, interest in the monotonous household duties was revived and a rise in consumerism created. An innovative need for these products arose, one may wonder if it was in part due to the pressure and influence of other housewives, and thus women became occupied with their latest gadgets that replace the industrial tools they previously used. Television also supported this image of women through the characters portrayed on their broadcasted programs. In I Love Lucy, Lucy used similar appliances and in addition to the commercials shown during the program the show provided ingenious publicity for these products and her lifestyle a like.

The relationship between the characters of Lucy and Ricky also set an example for the viewing audience. Although Lucy gets into numerous scrapes throughout the episodes and appears to question her position in the household, Ricky is the loving authoritarian. At times, Lucy reverts to childlike behavior when Ricky does not let her have her way, and in response he becomes stern and takes his place as the head of the household. These scenes were a message to women and reinforced the traditional gender role of the male patriarch. Further Ricky is the sole breadwinner in the Ricardo family. Lucy fought a constant battle to break out into show business and work for a living, but Ricky was adamantly against the idea. This was another message to women and men alike. Now these attitudes are viewed as misogynistic but they may have been accepted more readily, when the show was in its infancy, because of its comedic framing.

The character of Lucy as a mother was an important note as well. Although Little Ricky was not introduced in the show until the second season, once he arrived her role as a mother was highly emphasized. Her desire to work out side the home was continually countered by Ricky when he accentuated her job as Little Ricky’s caregiver. Further it seemed that sometimes Lucy felt bad she ever wanted to work outside the home. This conveyed a strong meaning that women should be grateful and happy that they can take care of their children and that it is solely the mother’s job. This job of child care giving was paired with Lucy’s need to care for Ricky also. She made Ricky breakfast every morning and was shown doing his laundry and ironing, in addition to the other household maintenance tasks. Ricky was unable to perform those tasks adequately in the show’s “Job Switching” episode; this illustration confirmed the traditional gender roles even more.

My how things have changed!

In our post sexual revolution society the character of the desperate housewife has drastically evolved. In Everybody Loves Raymond the wife Deborah was a career woman as was Lynette in Desperate Housewives. Both characters gave up their careers to embrace motherhood but the shows are not afraid to question if staying home with the children was the right decision. Deborah and Lynette also struggle in their parenting practices and frantically request help from their husbands while often times they are ignored. Rather than seeing their mothering as a duty, they realize when they are under appreciated and feel badly when they are not shown gratitude. Deborah is also portrayed as a bad cook, which is something that would never have been said on I Love Lucy because of its offensiveness. The husband’s roles have been altered in some ways as well. In both shows the father is still the breadwinner and head of the house, however, more say is given to the mothers, and their opinions for the most part is taken more into consideration. Overall, as seen in these programs, the running of a household has turned into a group effort as opposed to all the work being put on the woman. Here the role of women has lost its importance and is devalued. The tasks once ascribed only to women as being an innate skill and unique purpose has been asexualized and therefore attained an stereotype of menial.

In closing, television has helped disseminate values through our culture. Whether Americans are struggling to remember who they are following a world war or adjusting to the ever changing definition of the modern man and woman, television helps to mold social perceptions. In today’s society where the family unit is under attack and children are seen as a burden, shows like I Love Lucy are categorized as passé. But based on the television trends of the 1950‘s and the baby boom I am led to wonder if our society’s values and gender roles would change if our programs reflected the Catholic teachings of God ordained, traditional gender roles that valued motherhood, home cooked meals prepared with love, and basic purity and cleanliness both in person and home.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

By Popular Demand: The Laundry Recipes.

These are the recipes that I have use for a long time and they can be used in older machine types like the one I have as well as the newer HE machines similar to my Mother's. I am only listing the liquid version below here today because after several batches and individual attempts with the dry detergent, the substance never completely dissolved or rinsed out, this, however, may just be due to my particular machine. Let me know if y'all would like my dry detergent recipe to try, I would be more than happy to pass that one along as well. Enjoy!

Liquid Laundry Detergent

1 bar of Soap, grated
1.5 cups Borax
1.5 cups Washing Soda
3 gallons Hot Water
5 gallon Bucket from Home Depot

1. Dissolve the grated Soap in 3 cups of Water on the stove.

2. Add 3 gallons of Hot Water to the bucket.

3. Add dissolved Soap and dry ingredients.

4. Stir thoroughly.

5. Let cool over night, uncovered.

I use 1/2 cup per load. You may need to add 1/2 cup Distilled White Vinegar to your load if you have hard water. This recipe makes 102 loads at .02 cents a piece, and the price can be reduced by making your own soap.

Fabric Softener

1 cup Baking Soda
6 cups Distilled White Vinegar
8 cups Water

1 gallon Bucket

1. Add Baking Soda.

2. Add 1 cup of Water.

3. Add vinegar slowly as mixture begins to fizz.

4. Add the remainder of Water.

5. Mix well and cover, letting the concoction vent every so often.

You can either use 1 cup in your final rinse or soak a washcloth in the liquid then throw it in the dryer. You can also add 10 - 15 drop of an essential oil of your choice for scent, be sure to shake before every use if you decide to add fragrance.

Since my recipe for dishwasher detergent contains the same ingredients as the laundry recipes I will add it here. This recipe is so simple and leaves dishes clean and sparkling.

Dishwasher Detergent

Equal parts:

Baking Soda and Borax

Use 2 TBS. per load or just add one TBS. of each ingredient every load.

For a rinse agent use Distilled White Vinegar.