Category: Giveaways

Grieving Together: Review and Giveaway

Grieving Together: Catholic miscarriage book for couples

Ten years ago, I lost our sixth and last baby in an early miscarriage, a baby who was planned, wanted, loved.  I’ve never written about it here.  In a very dark period of my life during which I lost first the baby, then my dream home, and finally almost every possession to fire, it was and remains by far the most painful of the losses I suffered.  I don’t like to talk about it and I’ve never wanted to write about it.

But I decided to share just a little today in the hopes of helping ease the burden of others who have lost babies.  There are so many of us, which is something I hadn’t realized until I miscarried and women started whispering words of commiseration: “It happened to me too.  It is hard but it will get better.”

Grieving Together: Catholic miscarriage book for couples

When I was deep in grief–a longer period of time than I would have expected–when all I could do was lie in bed and sob while clutching a board book, the only thing I had bought for the baby, I felt very alone.  I looked online for resources, as one does these days, and found very little.  Eventually my husband and I conducted our own private little ceremony of praying together and naming the baby.  This did bring closure and healing to him, but my grieving process was very different.

Grieving Together: Catholic miscarriage book for couples

I wish that I’d had a copy of Grieving Together: A Couple’s Journey through Miscarriage.  This is the book you never want to need, but are so glad exists if you do.

Reading it even now, I felt affirmed, comforted, accompanied.

Laura and Franco Fanucci have authored a much-needed treasure, a companion and guide to grieving together as a couple.  Having experienced infertility, miscarriage, and infant loss in their own marriage, they know intimately the grief of their readers.  That experience informs the book and their empathy is tangible.  Reading a book from people who have been in your situation is uniquely comforting.

I was impressed by the book’s breadth–it starts with the more practical aspects of miscarriage: what it is, what the experience might be like, considerations of medical treatment and funeral arrangements.  But this section is anything but clinical–it is still animated by Laura and Franco’s love and concern for their readers.  The next section covers grief, including the ways the grieving process may be different for each partner. This is followed by a section of practical suggestions of support from friends, family, the community, and the Church, making this a book that’s valuable to more than those who have suffered loss themselves.  Finally, the last section discusses life after miscarriage, whether your path includes adoption, another pregnancy, or no more babies.

Grieving Together: Catholic miscarriage book for couples

This is a Catholic book, published by Our Sunday Visitor, with Catholic prayers and rites, concrete ways parishes can help, saints to pray to for comfort and guidance, and more.  Other than our pastor’s sincere sympathy, my parish offered no support to us when we lost our baby, and I suspect that is pretty standard.  So this book would make a great gift for your pastor, along with a suggestion for a ministry to serve couples who have suffered miscarriage.  The Catholic Church is well known for concern over unborn babies threatened by abortion, and sponsors ministries for post-abortive women; her concern for babies lost involuntarily and their parents should be a natural outgrowth of these pro-life convictions.

Grieving Together: Catholic miscarriage book for couples

Grieving Together is available now on Amazon. (If you purchase it through links on the blog I will receive a small commission.)  I received the book free in exchange for my honest review.

Or you could enter the giveaway below and win a copy for yourself, a friend, or your parish.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Contrite Catholic Giveaway

 

Rosalie 1

Y’all, isn’t that just beautiful?  The verse comes from one of my favorite passages in the Gospels, the one that ends: “Neither be anxious for tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself.  Let the day’s own trouble be sufficient for the day.”

Isn’t that a message we could all use right about now?  How would you like to have this beautiful watercolor print to remind you of God’s constant love and care?

Well, maybe you can because this is a giveaway! But first, let me tell you a little about the artist.

A former atheist turned Catholic, Rosalie Contrite now strives to live for the Lord and spread His love. She works from home, blogs and podcasts professionally, and homeschools her children.  She sells the print above and many more via her Etsy shop, Contrite Catholic Shop.  You can also visit Rosalie on her website and on Facebook.  I know her via a Catholic Bloggers Group of which we both are members.

Her work is just beautiful.  In exchange for hosting this giveaway and promoting her shop, I will be receiving a print of my own and I had a terrible time deciding which one to get.  This is a picture of the one I chose:

Rosalie 2

Now’s your chance!  You can enter by visiting the link below:

Rosalie Contrite Print Giveaway

The giveaway will end on Sunday, July 24 at midnight.  U.S. entries only, please.  I will contact the winner to get mailing info and Rosalie will ship the print directly.  Thank you for entering!

A Tangled Tale Unraveled: A Knot Genie Review

OK, y’all, here’s where things get real.  Here’s where I tell all, like you’ve heard bloggers sometimes do.  Here’s where I admit one of my deepest failures as a mother.  Read on . . .
I have written before about  Lorelei’s legendary tangles.  This problem recently reached critical mass, as she was becoming more and more resistant to our (mine and Emily’s) attempts to brush her hair, and we responded by avoiding the battle and the tears as long as possible.
When you send your kid out to school every day, you have to stay on top of the tangles.  When you don’t (Lorelei is homeschooled), let’s just say sometimes you let things go on a little too long.Hair 4
That’s why I was so excited when I got the opportunity to test a Knot Genie detangling brush.

Knot Genie Detangling Brush – Image from Amazon.com


Lorelei had actually been urging me to try a detangling brush for awhile, but remembering my own childhood experience with an electric detangler that got STUCK IN MY HAIR, I was reluctant.
But this brush was free–or at least paid for only with my time for testing it and writing this post to give my honest opinion.  So we had nothing to lose.  Except the tangles!
We had been winding up Lorelei’s hair into a bun to hide the worst of the mess.  I think it was well past the point of fooling anyone.
hair 3
After we took it down it didn’t look much different; the resulting mess resembled nothing so much as a giant dreadlock.
Hair 6 hair 5
I even googled “dreadlock removal” hoping in vain for some easy method, to no avail, so after thoroughly shampooing and conditioning, the Knot Genie it was.
I don’t fault the Knot Genie for not being able to detangle Lorelei’s hair.  No hairbrush could do the job alone.  We had to pull out the scissors.
hair 7
But as I freed lock after lock, Lorelei was able to do all the detangling of the remaining strands herself.  When I brushed her hair, she said it didn’t hurt.  I thought the sharp bristles might be painful (there are no little balls on the ends of them) but she says they are not.
Before the Great Hair Massacre, we had to braid her hair every night to avoid painful tangles in the morning.  Last night we left her hair down and this morning she brushed it with no pain at all!   And she brushed it herself.  (Yes, I know she is 10 years old and of course she ought to have been brushing it herself long ago.  But she is the baby and she takes full advantage of that.)
We washed it later in the day and brushed it while wet.  Comments from Lorelei: “It glides right through! I like the way it feels!”
We let it dry naturally, and it looked like this:
after hair 3
After approximately 30 seconds with the Knot Genie (I kid you not!) it looked like this:
after hair 2
I’d call that a win.  Lorelei also likes the bright color and thinks the brush is fun. That means she will use it!
How would you like to get to use it too?
That’s right, Knot Genie is going to give one of my readers their very own Knot Genie detangling bursh, a 19.99 value!
Click here to enter the giveaway!
And when you finish come back to the blog because . . .
Some of my friends are also hosting a Knot Genie giveaway. Enter for more chances to win at these blogs:

Planning Playtime

Our Daily Craft

Adventures of a Frugal Mom

Sand and Snow… and Everywhere in Between

Our House Now a Home

Knock-it-off Crafts

Mommytime 365

Sensitive Mommy

Carrie Ann Tripp

Breastfeeding Needs

The Mommy Rundown

UPDATE:  We have a winner!  Lizzie L. will soon be the proud new owner of a Knot Genie detangling brush!  Thank you to all who entered.

BAD HAIR DAY (2)
This Is How We Roll Thursday

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