Monday, December 1, 2014

Round Robin Week 4

Kit: The Beauty of Crafting collab by Valentina's Designs and Booland Designs
Font: Fancypants

Friday, November 21, 2014

Round Robin Week 3

From the trip Mom and I took last month to get the Suburban back to Phoenix to move our stuff to Chicago...yeah, I know, Moving from Phoenix to Chicago in the fall, brilliant! :)

But it was a gorgeous drive and the Painted Desert was amazing!

Kit: November Bliss by Valentina's Creations and Boop Designs
Font: Freestyle Script

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Round Robin week 2

Old Grandma and Grandpa were my mother's grandparents...on the Epps side I believe.

Kit: Shabby Chic Avenue by Valentina's Creations and ADB Designs
Font: Freestyle Script

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Autumn in AZ

For the November Round Robin at #theStudio #studioroundrobin

kit: Folkish Autumn Collab by Valentina's Creations and Snickerdoodle Designs
Font: Vintner Hand ITC
Available here

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Percy's Birthday

Percy turned 8 last month, and we celebrated in style! :)

These were made with Jilbert's bits of bytes lovely kit- Gatherings I love the versatility of this kit! It's part of the Coordinated Collection at #theStudio and right now it's only a buck! :)

Saturday, September 13, 2014


There's a new Denzel Washington movie coming out based on the 80's TV Show The Equalizer. When I saw the first preview for it I immediately thought of Jeff Schreiber and wanted to make sure that he knew about it. It was one of his very favorite shows and we watched it faithfully every week.

And then I remembered.

Jeff Schreiber, my first husband, father of my son, and still a dear friend, died in a car accident last November.

Every once in a while something like this catches me and it brings up all the emotion and memory surrounding his death. I know my loss is nothing compared to Kathi's (his widow), who lost a part of her soul that night, but in these moments I feel his loss so keenly.

So I will go see the movie, and remember the times we watched the show together, and pray for his soul in hopes that I will see him again one day.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Round Robin Week 3

Cutting it close this week, but here's what I put together using Manu Scraps and Wendy R Designs' gorgeous kit Tuscan Summer-

Kit: Tuscan Summer Collab by Manu Scraps and Wendy R Designs
Font: Blackadder

Sunday, August 17, 2014

On Depression

This one is hard for me to write, hard for me to admit in a public forum. Not because of any stigma, but because I still believe it is a weakness on my part.
Sometimes I suffer from depression. Most days I fight with depression.
I thank God that even in the midst of it I am able to cling to hope. I may not believe in the moment that things will get better, but I am able to remember that I didn't always feel this way.
So I fight.
And my life is good, don't get me wrong. There is much joy in my life, but sometimes I forget. Sometimes I even wallow in the feelings of loneliness and the overall greyness that is life with depression.

And then I remember, and begin to fight anew. It's a bit like in CS Lewis' The Silver Chair when the evil queen throws the sweet smelling perfume on the fire and it makes the prince, the children, and Puddleglum drowsy. She begins to lull them into thinking that there is no outside world, this is all there ever is or will be. It's so easy to fall into that grey slumber. It takes an act of fierce will, and pain to break that spell and fight to remember the Truth. 

So I fight, and I remember
Don't tell me that it's not my fault, not a weakness. If that's true then I have no control over it, and no hope. Let me continue my fight, and just understand that even on good days in my fighting to get there I may have very little energy. Be patient with me and just BE with me. If I need help, I will ask, but I do best when I can just concentrate on the moment and NOT always be thinking about it. That's what was so hard about the Robin Williams suicide. It was nonstop coverage about depression, and giving in (I'm NOT judging him on that!) and that just made my struggle all the more...real. But his struggle is not my struggle, and I will continue to believe in the Truth and fight to remain in this world, the real world, the one worth fighting for.

I'm glad I belong to a Church that believes in the efficacy of prayer, and that our prayers are not limited by time and space. Our prayers now reach the ear of God before Robin Williams' death. There is power in that prayer.It cannot change what happened (a fixed point in time and space), but it can affect what were his final moments. I need to remember that, especially when I'm praying for the souls of those who I have lost.

Prayer, it's also a powerful took against the encroaching greyness. Especially when I am tempted to give in. THAT I know is from the evil one. How can I be so sure? Because ANYTHING that would separate me from the Sacraments is from Satan. Giving in to despair certainly does that.

St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle!

So, I fight, and I remember, and I pray.

And I thank God for my friends and family that 'get it' and stand with me and help me to create moments of joy in my life. As The Doctor so wisely said- 

The way I see it, every life is a pile of good things and bad things. The good things don’t always soften the bad things, but vice versa the bad things don’t always spoil the good things or make them unimportant. 

I think I need to get that printed and posted somewhere close.

So, I fight, I remember, I pray, and I look for joy.

Thank you for adding to my joy, and for understanding that even though it doesn't take away the pain, it doesn't make it unimportant.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Link drop!

I have gathered a number of exceptional links over the years on a variety of topics. I'm posting a number of them here mostly so I can find them again, and also to share!

This batch is all Catholic ones, I'll have a link drop of Crafty and Scrapping ones later on.

Ok, here we go! :)

Pillars of Catholicism this is a 13 part 'crash course' on Catholicism from the John Paul the Great Catholic University.

Word Among Us is the web home of the Word Among Us devotional. Lots of great Catholic articles to read even if you don't subscribe.

Word on Fire is the website of Fr. Barron, who brought us the book and then the DVD study series Catholicism. Great resource!

Catholic Home Study Service One of my favorite study sites. FREE books with study questions to answer on a variety of Catholic topics.

What Catholic and/or Bible Study resources do YOU use online?

Mother Daughter Tea

Back in May, Mom and I went to a lovely Mother Daughter Tea at the Little Traveler Shops in Geneva.

I made this page from Jilbert's Georgia Peach kit and love how the colors all flow together so nicely!

You can find this beautiful kit at theStudio here!

Studio Round Robin- week two!

I'm annoyed that I let myself miss week one this time around, but here's what I put together for week two, and as my contribution for Jilbert's CT-
Kit: Wild Thing Collab by Manu Scraps and Jilbert's Bits of Bytes
Available at theStudio here
Font: Euphorigenic

I had fun finding just the right photo to use with this kit, this is from our trip to Busch Gardens in Virginia in 2008 while we were still stationed at Ft. Bragg.

Sunday, July 20, 2014


While I was in Arizona seeing Aaryk these last two weeks, we took a few days and went to California. I'll have LOTS of pages to share later, but here's the one I did for the Progressive Scrap at theStudio this month.
Kit: Beach Days Monthly Mega Kit from the delightful and fabulously talented designers at theStudio

It was such a wonderful day, and it happened to be Disneyland's 59th birthday! Keep checking back here and on Facebook for the rest of my Arizona Adventure! 

Friday, July 11, 2014

Corporate =/= Conformity

I was having a discussion with a dear friend this week on the topic of the change n music style at her parish. She was overjoyed by the new style but one of her friends who is in the choir is not a fan of the music director or the new songs. (Caveat- I don't have an opinion on the music, it's not my parish and so my point is not to discuss the particulars of this issue)

My friend was having trouble because she did not feel that she was given time to adequately present her point of view to the group, and mostly because she views corporate worship as contradictory to saying "I'm going to enjoy this no matter what the people around me think of it".

We discussed it ad nauseum in another forum, but I am still troubled by the idea that we must all conform to the same tastes in worship in order to

Corporate worship, that one hour a week where we gather as Church is a time to focus on the Creator, to WORSHIP Him. It's not a time to be focusing on the music, the homily, or the kid fussing two rows up unless these things bring us closer to God. If, on the other hand, they DO bring us closer to God as a form of worship, then they are very good. But you will NEVER get a group of more than 10 people together (and 10 is a stretch) who all worship the same way.

Unlike our protestant brothers who split off and form new churches because the pastor doesn't wear a tie, or over the music leader being a woman (two splits in my parent's church in the last decade), we have something that holds us together as Catholics~ the Eucharist. THAT is why we gather for corporate worship, and for no other reason. To receive Jesus, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity at Mass. Everything else is just to bring us to the Table.

Whether or not it was St. Augustine who originally said- In essentials, unity, in non-essentials, liberty, and in all things, charity it's a good reminder that the essentials are what make us Catholic, and that even in corporate worship we have the liberty to worship God as best we can even if it is differently done from the person sitting next to you.

Now, having said all this, what my dear friend was describing, a corporate worship where we are all of one mind in how we worship the King of Kings is something that I long for. But I know that we will only sing with one voice on the other side of Glory. The Angels and Saints are doing it right now, and one day I will join them in that glad song.

But for today, I will gladly stand next to you and worship with you, praising God with all my heart even if we do it differently.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Round Robin Week 4- My Nana

When I started this page today I didn't know that it would have been my Nana's 99th birthday today.

Happy Birthday Nana, we miss you...

Kit: Days Gone By Collab from The Urban Fairy and ADB Designs
Font: CK Bella
#studioroundrobin #theStudio

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Mark resources for Chapters 3 and 4

I hope to get a post up about the last couple of sessions, but for now here's an assortment of links that I used to find more information for our study-

Monday, May 26, 2014

Mother-Daughter Tea

Mom and I had a wonderful time in Geneva at the Little Shops and the Mother-Daughter Tea. It was so much fun to see all of the other Moms and their girls, of all ages!

Kit: Hidden in a Book Collab by The Urban Fairy and Jilbert's Bit's of Bytes
Font: Marketing Script

Friday, May 16, 2014

Rooter's big adventure

Rooter left today with Aaryk's folks to go live with his sister and her family in Idaho. They can't wait to see him! I'm sad to see him go, but happy that he will be well loved and get lots of attention!
Destination Idaho- Rooter's trip to his new home!

Kit: Destination Anywhere Collab by The Urban Fairy and Manu Scraps
Available here
Fonts: Calvin and Hobbes and Poplar Std

Copyright 2014 by Kyrie Drake

Friday, May 9, 2014


Kit: Butterfly Gardens Collab by The Urban Fairy and Valentina's Creations
Font: Caflisch Script Pro
Available from #theStudio here
Week One of the May Round Robin Event!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Divine Mercy Chaplet

In keeping with the Feast of the Divine Mercy today, here's how to pray the Divine Mercy chaplet-

For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Sanctuary vs. Worship Center

Driving to work today I was bugged when I saw a sign on a church directing people to the 'Worship Center'. This has been brewing in me for some time and I think I finally figured out why.

It used to be that most all protestant churches, even 'low church' denominations called their worship space a sanctuary. More and more though I'm seeing them renamed as 'worship centers'. This bothers me as it seems to me that we lose some of the holiness of gathering as 'church' this way. It's a mindset. Sure, whenever two or more are gathered in His name He is there and all, but Church is more than gathering together.

Even before I was Catholic, I always felt there was something special about the sanctuaries of traditional style churches. The pews, the weathered songbooks, the podium, the choir loft, the baptismal area, and the communion table all gave the feel that this place was special, set apart specifically for the worship of God. That's the very definition of holy or sacred.

Today's 'worship center' has none of that. It could be any room with chairs and a stage. While, again, we can certainly worship God in ANY place and should be doing so in all times and all aspects of our lives I think we really lose something by getting rid of the 'sacredness' of our churches.

The thought that concreted this in my mind this morning was that when we do this we risk church being about what WE do for God, and less about honoring what God has done for us.

Just my thought for today!

Thursday, April 17, 2014


The other day I started to pray the St. Michael prayer but in my mind I said, 'St. Michael the Archangel protect us from battle'.

But that's not how it goes, is it?

St. Michael the Archangel, DEFEND us in battle.

That is what we cry out in prayer. For the battle is here and now and all around us. God never promised us release from the battlefield, only that we could call upon His aid and that of His holy angels in our times of deepest need.

I do battle tonight, with my weakness, my anger, my desolation.

St. Michael the Archangel, defend me in battle,
Be my protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil.
May God rebuke him I humbly pray.
And do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
By the power of God
Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
Who prowl throughout the world seeking the ruin of my soul. Amen

All you Angels and Saints, pray for me!

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Resurrection

Today was all about preparing us for the Resurrection. I wonder how the Saducees viewed the passage from Ezekiel in today's reading. It's pretty clear on a bodily resurrection at the end of time. I don't recall ever having read or heard that passage before! I love seeing how the Old Testament and the New Testament mesh so beautifully.

I was also struck by the thought in the reading from Romans today about how we are 'in the Spirit' while still being physical the flesh. When Paul talks about living in the Spirit he is not suggesting that we give up our physical bodies. This meshes so nicely with the Catholic understanding of John 6 . There is no false dichotomy between the body (flesh) and the Spirit.

That's a thought I want to develop further, but not sitting here at Einstein Brothers this morning!  ;)

Monday, March 31, 2014

Who Do You Say That I Am?

I really, really wanted to embed a player here to show off this song, but I can't make it work. >:(

So, go here- Who Do You Say That I Am to listen to the song that keeps running through my head as the 'theme' song for the Gospel of Mark bible study I'm involved in right now.

It's by Tim & Julie Smith off their album A Eucharistic People available here (along with all of their other fabulous music!).

It's been going through my head for weeks, and thanks to my friends Andra and Tom Booth I was finally able to locate it!

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Gospel of Mark Bible Study Chapter 1:29- 2:12

Today we spent a good bit of time reviewing the themes of Chapter 1, and answering the questions in the book.

We pick up at Verse 28 in Chapter 1 where Jesus, having cast out the demon, to the astonishment of the crowds ("What is this?! A new teaching?!") IMMEDIATELY leaves the synagogue and goes to the home of Simon and Andrew. His fame is spreading, but he doesn't bask in it, or continue to teach, but immediately goes to the home he will use as his homebase. There he encounters Simon's mother-in-law who is sick. She is the first one that Jesus heals in Mark's gospel. This healing (albeit a private one) took place during the Sabbath, and begins Jesus's ministry of healing by TOUCHING the afflicted. It's not until that evening, after the Sabbath that the entire town of Capernaum comes to the house with their sick and possessed. How many people would that have been? According to Wikipedia about 1500!

The next morning he went out alone, to a solitary place to pray. We see this cycle throughout the gospels. Jesus dealing with the crowds; healing, teaching, and preaching and then going out alone to pray. How human of him! :) Taking time to be alone with God, to recharge, gather strength to face the next day, the next challenge.

When Simon and the others come to find him and tell him that everyone is looking for him, he says basically, 'Let's get this thing started, this is why I'm here, to preach the gospel throughout the land'. So they went, preaching in the synagogues and casting out demons. Those two are linked often. Did the demon possessed gather around the synagogue? Were they brought there for healing? Were they drawn there by the demons? Interesting questions.

In 1:40 we see the first time we see Jesus heal some one who is considered 'unclean' by Jewish law. Jesus reaches out and touches the man to make him clean. Mark brings home the point later that Jesus' touch makes the other person clean, it does not make him unclean. The power of that touch. Likely the first human contact the man had experienced in years. It shows how approachable Jesus is, that he identifies with us. It shows his power over the Old Covenant rules, how that his holiness conquers the uncleanliness of the leper. He has the man still go through the proscribed steps to show himself to the priest so that he can again be part of the community. And...tells him to tell no one what he had done.

This is Mark's emphasis on the Messianic Secret. It's a thread that runs throughout the first half of his gospel. Why did Jesus do this? There are several thoughts on this-
1) He wanted to avoid the reputation  that he was merely (merely!) a miracle worker or healer
2) He wanted to steer away from the popular ideas of the time of what the Messiah would be like- a military leader and great warrior.
3) He didn't want to give his enemies time until the appointed time to fire up their wrath.
(paraphrased from the Gospel of Mark Ignatius Catholic Study Bible notes)

(CH 2:1-12 will be added soon...hopefully!)

In looking at Chapter 2 through Chapter 3:6 we see 5 scenes in which Jesus' actions lead to encounters with the Pharisees. Here are a couple of links to more information about the Pharisees from both a Jewish and Catholic perspective-

Jewish Encyclopedia
Catholic Encyclopedia

I think that reading about them from the perspective of modern Judaism is absolutely fascinating!

(More to come later!)

Monday, March 17, 2014

Thought from Mass March 9,2014

God knew that Adam and Eve would choose to sin, but He made them anyway. He had to give them the freedom to choose or they would be nothing more than the angels. He already had all the angels He wanted.

He wanted us, created us, to choose to love Him.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

The Gospel of Mark Bible Study Chapter 1- 1:1-28

Our Prayer today-

Here are some links we'll talk about in Bible Study Today-

Peter's home (Jesus' HQ) in Capernum

The Interlinear Greek New Testament

Here's a link to more about Lectio Divina, the method we used to read scripture at the end of our session- Lectio Divina

My thoughts and commentary to follow, after we meet today. I look forward to your thoughts, comments, and insights (even if you're not part of our Bible Study!)!

Who Do You Say That I Am?

A study on the Gospel of Mark, from the Ignatius Catholic Study Bible with Commentary, Notes, and Study Questions by Scott Hahn and Curtis Mitch

My thoughts and comments on Mark 1:1-28 from Sunday March 9, 2014

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Project 52

This year it is my goal to take a photo each week of just something in my life. I'm using Instagram for this so that I can easily put them into a template for my Project 12 pages. I may not post them individually here...goodness knows I'm woefully behind on posting my 2013 scrap pages! But I will try to post the finished monthly pages, and you are welcome to follow me over at Instagram!