A Few Highlights from 2013. . .

by | Dec 31, 2013 | Year in Review | 10 comments

Like last year, I thought it’d be fun to share some of the highlights from this past year. I actually compiled photo albums as gifts for our parents this Christmas and I snapped some screen shots of those pages (with the text slightly modified) to share with you all here at Shower of Roses.  Once again it has been such a wonderful year, filled with so much love, joy, and many, many blessings!

In January we celebrated the twelve days of Christmas with a super fun dinner party and I celebrated my 35th birthday… Even though Sean was away for training for a few weeks he and the kids made sure it was just as special as always!

Rascal turned 11 in February with a Hobbit themed birthday!

March was busy! We welcomed a new Holy Father, completed a Papal Unit Study and Lap Book, and the boys were excited to see their “Habemus Papam!” lego creation shared all over the web, and even tweeted by a Vatican spokesman!

In the meantime the girls were busy practicing Irish Dancing for St. Patrick’s Day.

We spent a weekend at the coast for Sean’s birthday.

March ended with Easter Sunday, Baskets filled with Books, and our Annual Egg Hunt!  You can scroll through all the Easter posts here.

(Speaking of Easter, Chiquita is very excited that in 2014 her birthday will fall on Easter Sunday!) 

Our sweet niece turned 3, learned to walk, and has been making such wonderful progress. 

(My brother and his wife also announced their new baby on the way at Thanksgiving!) 

In April we were blessed to attend a Sound of Music play and enjoy another Mother & Daughter Tea Party.

Chiquita celebrated her 8th birthday with a Josefina American Girl themed party.

After years of praying we were blessed with a regularly scheduled Latin Mass each quarter!  

(These EF Masses will increase to every other month in 2014!  These are the first Latin Masses at our local parish that didn’t require me having another baby first! Woohoo!) 

In May Twinkle Toes had her (first phase) braces taken off and we celebrated the feast of Pentecost – one of the many beautiful feast days we celebrated again this year.

In June we attended a Catholic Family Camp with the Fathers of Mercy.

Snuggles turned 6 on the last day of Golf Camp and was thrilled with his Lone Ranger birthday!

The 4th of July was celebrated with friends and fireworks, and cake!

In July we became the parents of a teenager. . . Captain loved his Long Expected Party

Summer was filled with wildfires and overtime, way too much smoke, a vocations camp, swimming lessons, tidepooling and more.

In August we were blessed with another beautiful Goddaughter.  The children were (once again) inspired to play Mass (and Bud here) following an amazing Latin Mass we attended during a William Byrd Festival.  

(I was also blessed with another Godson this December, but sadly wasn’t able to travel to Nebraska for his baptism a few days before Christmas… He is such a cutie and I can’t wait to meet him!) 

Twinkle Toes became a Ten-ager and loved her “Caroline” party.

We ended the summer with one last trip to the coast, a cake on the anniversary of Summorum Pontificum, an exciting golf accomplishment for my brother, another visit from friends and a trip to Crater Lake!

After our guests headed home we began our 2013-2014 school year with goals and checklists.

In October we tried not to worry when my husband was furloughed, and some of the family headed to visit my husband’s parents for the first time in nearly three years.  The older boys and I missed them so much! It was hard not being able to travel all together… Saving for a larger van, one that fits all nine of us, is one of our goals for 2014!

We went to the pumpkin patch, got lost in the corn maze, and Rascal built a PumpkinMan…
. . . and the children all looked so adorable in their All Saints Costumes for our annual party

Our diocese was blessed with a holy new Archbishop. The fall was filled with many school projects, feast day celebrations, and a Thanksgiving celebration with friends and family!

December started peacefully, but very quickly we were reminded of just how much we value running water in the home when our pipes froze and our well pump’s motor died following a snowstorm and abnormally low temperatures for our area!

Despite the lack of running water (thankfully for “only” 6 days, before we were able to replace the deep well pump) I still managed to pull together a perfectly pink party for Rose!

And Bud celebrated with a Deer in the Woods birthday!

The feasts of St. Nicholas, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and St. Lucy were enjoyed as much as ever and Christmas was beautiful! (I created the book before Christmas, but do plan to share some pictures from Christmas day soon.) 

I have also been so incredibly blessed by this little space of mine here in the blogospehere… Thank you all for the kind comments, prayers and support! May God bless and reward you all! 

Happy New Year! 


  1. Jamie Jo

    I loved that! I love how you put all the pictures together in those monthly collages! Happy blessed new year!

  2. Jan

    Wishing you a happy and blessed New Year!

  3. theresa EH

    If I absolutely had to pick, The lego Habemus Papam is my choice.

  4. 9peasMom

    Happy New Year to you as well! I truly enjoyed seeing the photos and the recap! I will do this next year!

  5. Elisa

    Love all the photos. Happy New Year, Jessica!

  6. Anonymous

    I was really looking forward to this post. THANK YOU for sharing so much of your life here with us. Please know that you do so much good through this blog. May God reward you with another year of many blessings and joys. Happy New Year!

  7. Sleen

    I do a book every Christmas. I love the idea of one that covers the whole year. What a lovely keepsake.

  8. Kirsten

    Happy New YEar Jessica!! I enjoyed looking at your pictures. Some of them I was like "I remember that post" Hee Hee. Thanks for sharing! God's blessings to you and your family in the coming new year!

  9. Unknown

    Hi Jessica, Where did you get the books done, I would love to do these for Christmas this year. THANKS for all you in sharing your life with your on-line family.

  10. Jessica Gordon

    I used Shutterfly, Michelle. If you end up using them be sure to do a search for coupon codes or watch their sales. I got at least 50% off on the books I ordered.


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Father in heaven, grant me the grace to appreciate the dignity which you have conferred on me. Let me realize that not even the Angels have been blessed with such a privilege—to share in your creative miracle and bring new Saints to heaven. Make me a good mother to all my children after the example of Mary, the Mother of your Son. Through the intercession of Jesus and Mary I ask your continued blessings on my family. Let us all be dedicated to your service on earth and attain the eternal happiness of your kingdom in heaven. Amen.

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Hi! I'm Jessica, a Roman Catholic wife and home educating mother to our nine children. I was home educated myself, along with my eleven younger siblings. I have a special devotion to St. Therese, through whom I have been given much help and many blessings--the beautiful "Shower of Roses" that she has sent my way! Here I will record a few of the blessings I treasure. Please remember that what you see here is just a little glimpse at our lives, so please say a prayer for us, as we continue to strive for holiness.

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