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Today, I hope you remember last week’s message about comparing yourself to others.  If you don’t remember what Sunday Mornings…when you think THEY have it ALL together, was about, you can go visit it now.  Go ahead, I’ll wait.  In life its easy to compare yourself to others, its human nature.  Our minds lead us to believe that everyone else has it better.  However, we learn after time that sometimes the grass is not greener on the other side.  The only person we should be focused on is ourselves.  If we are trying our hardest to walk on the right path, then we are doing great, even if it doesn’t always feel that way.

As promised, I will share a reading from today’s mass.  Read it and let the words marinate.

Jas 5:1-6                                              [Injustice of the Rich]

James deplores the injustice committed by the rich.  He speaks of their pending miseries, their wanton luxury, wages withheld from workers.  All these will stand as witness for greed.

A reading from the Letter of Saint James

Come now, you rich, weep and wail over your impending miseries.  Your wealth has rotted away, your clothes have become moth-eaten, your gold and silver have corroded, and that corrosion will be a testimony against you; it will devour your flesh like a fire.  You have stored up treasure for the last days.  Behold, the wages you withheld from the workers who harvested your fields are crying aloud; and the cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts.  You have lived on earth in luxury and pleasure; you have fattened your hears for the day of slaughter.  You have condemned; you have murdered the righteous one; he offers you no resistance. 

–The word of the lord.

Thanks be to God.

On Sundays, most often, when I ask someone how they’re doing, they reply with “OK”.  Just OK? “Well its Sunday, the end of the weekend.”  If you saw their face, you might believe it was the end of the world.  Maybe you yourself feel this way?  Monday for most seems to be this dreaded day of starting over a dreaded cycle.  Why is that though? 

Last I checked Sunday was the official beginning of the week.  Go ahead check your calendar if you do not believe me.  The week does not start with Monday, its start with Sunday.  Today we are going to change the way we think.  We may not be one of the rich people mentioned in the reading above, but we are rich in many ways.  Yes, you read correctly.  WE ARE RICH IN MANY WAYS!

Let’s STOP using Sunday as a day to mourn the week to come.  Let us acknowledge the week starts with Sunday and use it as a day to set the mood for the rest of the week.  Let us take a second to be thankful for everything we have and are.  Today on My Pocketful Of Thoughts, Soulful Sundays presents a day of Thanksgiving.  You can even eat Turkey if you want.

Today I am Thankful for

  • another day of life
  • having the opportunity to share in the Tradition of the Mass
  • Sunday Dinners
  • the job I will go to tomorrow
  • the love of my life, he’s been my rock this past week
  • my mom, who still takes me into consideration at meal time
  • my dad who does what he has to, to provide for his family
  • my sister, who has a big heart and does anything she can for the ones she cares for
  • you, who took the time today to read this post…you are AWEsome!

I could go on and on, but you get the point.  If you find that you dread Sundays because of work the next day; remember that the job is currently paying your bills.  There are many many many people out there who do not have jobs and are not sure how they are going to eat today, never mind pay a bill.  You are very lucky.  Now go ahead, let me know what you are thankful for today.  Then keep track of all the things this week that you are grateful for so you can share them with us next week!

Until then,
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Sunday Mornings…when you think THEY have it ALL together.

Today on this Soulful Sunday I wanted to remind you that going to church or staying home and listening to The Word is good for your soul.  A post I read over at Humor & Honey, Singing A Lie in Church, made me think about what is on my mind during the Mass.  As of late, I think I’ve been pretty focused.  Although reading the first or second reading during Mass helps.  I have to pay attention or else I can potentially throw off the whole flow.  That is something I am not willing to do!  The nice thing about reading for the Sunday Mass, is that I practice during the week.  I have all the readings that will be read in advance.  It lets my mind marinate on The Word and the message that will be delivered.

This was not always the case.  It was some time before I was asked to read.  I didn’t have the readings in advance and I admit my mind would wander.  There was a handful of times that I would look at the families sitting in front of me and think, Wow they really have it together.  Their ENTIRE family is here.  Most times I attend church by myself.  It takes a special occasion for the entire family to come out.  The great thing though, is that God is with me always, so I NEVER feel alone.

Friday in Youth Group, Mother Blessed Sacrament showed me a video that made me feel a lot better about not having the entire family with me.  Don’t get me wrong I wish more of my family members attended Mass with me, but what I saw made me remember that sometimes the grass is not greener on the other side.  Sometimes people look like they have it all together, but really don’t.  Try not to laugh too hard.     

I find it comforting to know that the well polished family might not have it all together on Sunday morning.  I am not sure if they have days like in the video, but its a comfort nonetheless.  It is also a reminder to compare yourself to yourself and not others.  Today I’ll leave you with the Second Reading for your mind to marinate over.

Second Reading Jas 3:16-4:3 [Avoiding Conflicts]
Wisdom begets innocence.  It is peace-loving, kind, docile, impartial, and sincere.  The inner cravings of human beings lead to murder, envy and squandering.
A Reading from the Letter of Saint James
BELOVED: Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice.  But the wisdom from above is first of all pure, then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity.  And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace for those who cultivate peace.
Where do the wars and where do the conflicts among you come from? Is it not from your passions that make war within your members? You covet but do not possess.  You kill and envy but you cannot obtain; you fight and wage war.  You do not possess because you do not ask.  You ask but do not recieve, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.
The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.
Let it marinate!
Until Then,
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And that’s when I knew …

Last July I sat in Mass, studying those around me.  Listening to the scripture was something I found hard to do at first, not because of the words but how I was hearing them.  The words ran into each other.  I struggled to find the answers that I needed and to hear the message I was hoping would appear.  Aren’t we supposed to listen to The Word and find the message you’re meant to hear that day?

The months prior to this had me questioning the actions and choices I’ve made in my life.  To me, some things made perfect sense and well, other situations just seemed unfair.  I try my hardest to not react to situations beyond my control.  Every now and then it is not so easy.

You might recall that week in your life where every waking minute seems to feel like you’ve gotten up on the wrong side of the bed.  You ask God, ‘Why me?’ ‘What did I do to deserve this?’ You’re shocked to not get a response, but then the overwhelming feeling passes and you can breath again.

…Until that feeling comes back.  I felt, at the time, the solution was simple, remove all outside influences.  Can you really live out your life alone though?  Is there a way to let others in without them marking you?  I’ve learned that for me, it doesn’t seem possible.  Everyone close to me, who has problems, I feel like they are my problems to.  Even if I can’t do anything about it, it still eats away at me.  Deep breathing helps.  Sitting in the pew, those extra moments after Mass has ended and everyone clears out, also helps.

Photo credit:

On that day, in July, for the first time in my life, I felt at peace. Complete peace. When Mass had ended, I had decided after a long prayer and conversation, that I was going to give God my problems and in return I would do whatever it was He wanted.  I didn’t realize how quickly He would call me on it.  Walking out of the Sanctuary I was approached by the nun in charge, Mother Blessed Sacrament, and she asked me if I would be interested in helping out with the Church’s Youth Group.  I stole a glance down the main aisle of the Sanctuary, down to the large cross that hung over the alter, turned back to her and replied yes.  And that’s when I knew God would keep me at my word, and I at His. 

Since that day, I continue to help out with Youth Group, I read Scripture for Sunday Mass, I help chaperone the Church’s Youth trips, and I might be teaching CCD this fall.  What I didn’t know on that day in July is how much I would love every single minute of it!  I feel at home and that helps with all the little things that come my way.  Today the Word nourishes my soul.  I hold on to that feeling every single day.  And that’s how I know everything will be all right…in due time!

There’s a saying I’ve heard on a number of occasions that I find rings true, “Let go, Let God!”  Today, if you have something that is weighing you down, and you’re not sure how to even begin to approach it, let it go, give it to God and have faith that it will all work out.

Until then,

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To Three….Two….

Image from

July 13th, 2012 marked the anniversary of my birth.  It is symbolic for another year to live my life, to fulfill my dreams and become the AWEsome being God has made me to be. If I’m being totally honest here, every year has felt the same, nothing new or exciting. Just another day to mark off the calendar.  Pretty depressing, right?  I used to think so.  I would spend a good chunk of my birthday in bed, feeling sad.  Last year that changed though.  Last year I decided that my 31st year of life was going to be different.  I would enjoy life more.  I would give more of my time to others.  I would be a great friend.  I would work on being the healthiest me I could be.  I would be thankful for every little blessed item in my life.  I would have a better relationship with God.

Of all the things I’ve given extra effort to this past year, which one do you think has effected me the most?  Well yes, you guessed right, my relationship with God.  It is to Him that I am grateful.  He has opened up so many doors for me.  I feel most at peace at church.  I also feel that it pushes me to be better in all aspects of my life, for through God all things are possible.

The Birthday Girl…PS these are not all my drinks 🙂

This year I didn’t spend one extra minute in bed than I needed to.  I spent it celebrating!  I received a handful of texts and phone calls throughout the day.  Many of which I was not expecting and that warmed my heart so.  It was as if God was saying to me, Yes you’re doing great, Keep up the good work.  I gave thanks many times over that morning in mass.  I felt truly honored.  A special thanks to all my friends and family who wished me well on the anniversary of my birth.  I am thankful for you all!  Please join me in raising a glass…To my 32nd year of life, may it hold great accomplishments, hugs and kisses, laughter, tears of joy, special occasions, friends and family. To 32. Salud.

May we all feel this way on our birthdays, that is my wish for you.

Until then,

PS You can catch me most days on the FB page.  Come share your high energy with me.

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Spend time with the one you’re with….Feed your soul.

…There’s that song….’Love the one you’re with’, well spend time with them to.  Yesterday was a lovely Saturday.  The sun was bright and shining.  The temperature was in the high 90’s.  I had talked myself into staying in the comforts of my air conditioned bedroom.  I threw the list of things I wanted to do out the window.  Some days you just want to do absolutely nothing.  Especially when there is a laundry list of things to do.  This didn’t happen though.  Instead I enjoyed a lovely day with my boyfriend.  He reminded me of the plans I had made the day before and I was going to do them whether I wanted to or not.  I dragged my heels for a good hour, when I should have been getting ready but I wanted to have a little “do nothing” time. Once I was dressed and ready to go, my spirits picked up.

We started off our Saturday afternoon with a delicious lunch at Ralph ‘n’ Rich’s.   This restaurant is located in downtown Bridgeport.  I have been here a handful of times, and I have never been disappointed.  It is a lovely place to have large groups of people.  Once Daniel’s hunger was tamed we ventured off to the Art’s Festival on the Green in Bridgeport.

 It was great to see all the people come out for this event, despite the heat. It is important to support artists, after all they help us to see the beauty in all things.  I picked up some beautiful prints from my friend Shanna Melton; to see her works you can visit  It has been a pleasure to see her painting evolve.  She is also now doing photography.  Aside from paintings, there were a number of jewelry vendors and other items of an artistic nature.  We cooled off with generous cups of ice cream.  A band was playing melodies and we even got to watch a fashion show; who knew how pretty a dress could be, made up of different ties.  I didn’t snap a picture of that because the model moved to fast for my bloggie, but take my word, it was very pretty.

Photo from Fandango

We rushed off from the art’s festival to catch the 1:45 showing of Ted starting  Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis.  Its a story about a grown man and his teddy bear.  I won’t ruin it for you if you plan on seeing it.  The one liners will keep you amused throughout the movie, but I suggest you watch it during matinee hours.  It is not worth a full price ticket. If you have kids, this is Rated R, I DO NOT recommend this movie for children under 17.

No movie is complete without dinner, right?  We shared a delicious meal at Taco Loco in Bridgeport.  On my quest of trying new things, I fell in love with Yucca Fries, Dos XX beer and Lime Cilantro dressing.  I meant to take a picture of my Avocado with Mahi salad, but I forgot and I ate it all. :/   I assure you from the trace of absolutely nothing on my plate that it was delicious.  Desert was purchased at the local Stop and Shop, Breyer’s Natural Vanilla Ice Cream and FRESH Strawberries.  

A few episodes of one of my favorite t.v. series on Netflix is how we ended the evening.

Daniel and I did a lot yesterday, but none of it was really important.  It was a rare treat to have that chunk of time.  We could have done absolutely nothing.  What was important was the time we spent together.  It is important to spend time with loved ones.  Its one of those things that feeds our souls, like I spoke of last Sunday.  Sometimes life gets so busy that we put off saying Hi to a friend or a family member.  It is not done on purpose but it just gets pushed back on the list of things to do.  If you’re reading this and someone has popped into your head, then take a few seconds and send them a text.  Type Hi and add a smiley face 🙂 This translates to… Its ME and I was thinking of YOU.   This Sunday feed your soul by giving that estranged friend a call or the aunt you haven’t seen in many moons.  Feed your soul.

Until then,

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What feeds your soul?

IVE Youth Festival 2012

The last couple of months have been a little hectic.  I’ve had the honor of chaperoning a few of the youth retreats at my church.  I find it to be a blessing in disguise.  In my youth, I never participated in such events.  So it was almost like getting a second chance for having missed it the first time around.  It’s a wonderful thing to see so many young people, from all different walks of life, come together and have such strong faith.

My niece and I, IYE Youth Festival 2012

Each morning started off in prayer and every day ended the same.  Those days were the most tranquil!  To start off the day with God and listen to the word.  The mass flowed as if it were rehearsed for months.  Each voice harmonized to sound as one.  Of all the masses I have been to in my life, it had never sounded more lovely. 

I got to know the group at a more personal level.  I listened to their opinions, watched them take in the days, saw them bond with each other and get to know new people.  With all that goes on in the world, its comforting to know that we can come together in Christ.

Girls Summer Camp 2012

The girls at the Summer Camp taught me that I can rise to a challenge of being an adult, commanding respect and earning trust.  I hope my fear never showed.  Teenage girls can be scary.  This experience reminded me how impressionable our young girls really are.  Saying the right thing can carry them on a natural high towards victory against an opposing team and saying the wrong thing can crush them in an instant.  Our youth needs role models, to push them to reach their potential, to tap into their creativity, to stand up for their individuality, and to encourage them to travel the road less traveled.  We must feed them hope.  We must plant seeds of success.  We need them to understand that they can do anything they set their minds to do. 

Pit Stop driving back from Girls Summer Camp 2012

I was fortunate growing up to have teachers and role models that did just that for me.  I hated it at the time, because I was young and that’s what you’re supposed to do at that age.  However its the one thing that has always stuck with me, NEVER LET ANYONE TELL YOU THAT YOU CANT DO SOMETHING.  I hope that I am able to send that message out to the youth I work with.  Anything is possible if you set your mind to it.  Anything is possible with Christ.

They all started the weekend reluctant and by the retreat’s end no one wanted to leave.  It touched my heart and blessed my soul to see such a sight.  Its amazing what opportunities arise when you open your heart and mind and allow yourself to take it all in.

Today’s mass centered around one basic idea, “Whoever had much did not have more, and whoever had little did not have less.”  It’s in reference to riches.  “…For you know the gracious act of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, for your sake he became poor, so that by his poverty you might become rich.  Not that others should have relief while you are burdened, but that as a matter of equality your abundance at the present time should supply their needs so that their abundance may also supply your needs, that there may be equality…. (2 Cor 8:7, 9, 13-15)

While I do not currently posses the riches that would allow me to give to others as I would like to, I have been blessed at the moment with free time.  That for me is currently in abundance, so it only makes sense that I might give that free time towards volunteering to persuade young minds into doing grand things with their lives.   Whatever you have an abundance of, please share it.  I have discovered this past year that volunteering feeds my soul and that to me is priceless.

So tonight I leave you with this, What feeds your soul?

Until then
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What Do We Take with Us When We DIE?

Today is May 13th, Mother’s Day.  I want to do a special shout out to all the MOMS!  YOU GUYS ROCK!  It is also the last day of my second set of 40 Days and 40 Nights, a Lenten Season.  Technically we are in the Easter Season.  The Lenten Season ended officially on Easter Sunday.  (For more information on this topic visit a previous writing piece titled The Lord Works in Mysterious Ways…)  During Lent, I slipped and did the thing I gave up.  Shopping.  Had the event I attended occurred on a Sunday, then ALL would have been right with the world.  I bought makup.  In my mind it did not count as shopping, however, my friend reminded me that it did.  To buy things that I did not NEED, was considered shopping.  I agreed and made a mental note that if I were to choose shopping again next year, to give up for Lent, I would be specific as to what it included.  I decided at that point to start the 40 days over, once the official 40 days were up.  I did well.  The 40 days were almost up, and then a little over a week ago, I attended yet another Makeup event and I slipped.  Again.


Instead of beating myself about it, I’ve decided to make it a learning experience.  Isn’t everything after all, a learning experience?  I did learn a lot about the upcoming trends in makeup for the Spring and Summer seasons.  I also got to highlight in my NEW Makeup Journal a quote that Chanel Makeup Artist Mario Penailillo stated, “Once you take care of your skin, makeup is easy.”  I nodded my head in agreement.  I’ve always liked the idea of makeup.  I just never understood it.  I would put colors on my face, but I never understood how to make it look like it was supposed to be makeup, AND NOT random colors on my face.  In my twenties, I only experimented with lipsticks and mascara.  It wasn’t until I sat down at a FNO event at a Banana Republic at the Trumbull Mall, with Chanel Makeup Artist Maria Moutinho at Lord & Taylor, that I realized just how important taking care of your skin really is.  I was introduced to the Chanel Hydramax Line and fell in love with my skin.  Prior to this I had been using over the counter, drugstore facial moisturizers.  While they initially left my skin feeling hydrated and protected, it didn’t last long.  I found myself wanting to put the moisturizer on several times a day.  Over time I began to learn about the different pieces that fit the makeup puzzle and I can now transform my face into something artistic.


The events I’ve attended, have taught me tricks, and exposed me to new colors and techniques.  As Jackie said in a previous post, “You can Lift Your Spirits with Fashion“.  It is also a fun thing to do with a friend.  Cristina’s eyes really sparkled that day.  If you’re not comfortable with makeup, its good to learn one product at a time.  Buying everything at once is overwhelming and its difficult to remember all the information about each one.  I will go over what I learned in an upcoming series.

For now, I want to say that while makeup makes me feel good, like shopping for clothes does, it is also my weakness.  I lecture my niece about not being so attached to material things, as we cannot take them when we’re gone from this earth.  However, I have not been taking my own advice.  I cannot lecture her on her wants of expensive sneakers, if I can spend 26.50 on a bottle of nail polish.  She pointed this out to me on Friday night.  At first I was a little angry, who is she to tell me this.  On thinking on it further, who am I to hide from a truth.  I must practice what I preach.

Today, the 80 days are done.  I can go on a shopping spree if I want to.  I find that I don’t.  I have a ton of clothes, shoes, makeup, accessories, books and I can go on forever here.  I cannot take any of these things with me when I go.  At the end of the day they are not important.  We fall in life, to get back up, dust ourselves off and figure out how to not fall again.  These last 80 days have strengthened my soul.  My falls have highlighted the things that are important.  We do not take our material possessions with us when we die and I ask God for strength to remind me of this in my weak moments!

Have any advice, tricks or stories to help me out on my journey to not be attached to material things?  Share them in the comments below or on the My Pocketful of Thoughts Facebook Page.

Until then,
PS:  If you happen to live in the 06604 area, make a trip to the Trumbull Mall’s Lord and Taylor and learn about makeup from Chanel artist Maria Moutinho or Aziza Saeed.  Tell them I sent you 🙂