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Fabulously Featured Ink Slingers Martina Series

Fabulously Featured: Heart of a Mother

Welcome to Catholic Sistas’ newest series, featuring some of our friends in the Catholic blogging world entitled Fabulously Featured which will run on Wednesdays. I have always wanted to introduce you to some new blogs to follow and support, but seriously lacked the time to put this together before now. In a Facebook group of fellow Catholic women bloggers, I asked ladies to answer some questions for this series, and they were all too excited to participate! I give you their answers in their own words. 🙂

HeartofaMother

 

Jenny at Heart of a Mother really gets to the heart’s desire of many of us Catholic mommas. She takes everyday internal dialogue and turns it into an opportunity to find Christ and shine for Him. If you’re on the lookout for something that is introspective when it comes to the Catholic faith, look no further. Read the feature here and then head over to her blog to find some creative and unique ways to find and call Christ into your heart. You won’t be disappointed. 🙂

Jenny
Jenny

ESTABLISHED:

2007

THEME:

How my faith guides me as a Catholic homeschooling wife & mother.

INSPIRATION/MOTIVATION:

I first wrote as a way to recreate from a distance a weekly mother’s group. I had moved across the country and missed talking about my faith with my friends, so I wrote weekly reflections on the upcoming Gospels. Today, I want to write more as a part of taking care of mom. Writing brings me clarity, and I enjoy the process.

FAVORITE ELEMENT:

I process things through writing, so by the end of my posts, I often will be able to finally organize my chaotic thoughts. It is then that I draw conclusions and find peace.

FAVORITE POST:

Normal, Average, Regular Homeschoolers? and all of my Little Flowers Girls Club® posts

BALANCE:

I am a very haphazard blogger. To blog regularly, I literally have to set a timer for 30 minutes when I want to write and just write. Sometimes good stuff comes out, sometimes not.

AUDIENCE:

Other Catholic homeschooling mamas.
 Heart of a Mother

CATCH PHRASE/TAGLINE:

“The most beautiful masterpiece of the heart of God is the heart of a mother.” St. Therese of Lisieux ~ I chose this, because I wanted to write about how my motherhood brings me closer to God.

ADVICE:

If they like to write, they should just start and see how it goes. Our Church is beautifully diverse, so no two Catholic blogs are the same. I always remember that if each post touches the heart of just one other Catholic mom, it was worth writing.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

Have a question or comment for our featured blogger? Please leave them in the comments below!

Would you {or someone you know} like to be fabulously featured?

Send an email to Martina@CatholicSistas.comand reference the Fabulously Featured series and we’ll get the ball rolling to get you or your friend featured!

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Fabulously Featured Ink Slingers Martina Series

Fabulously Featured: Holloway Family North

Welcome to Catholic Sistas’ newest series, featuring some of our friends in the Catholic blogging world entitled Fabulously Featured which will run on Wednesdays. I have always wanted to introduce you to some new blogs to follow and support, but seriously lacked the time to put this together before now. In a Facebook group of fellow Catholic women bloggers, I asked ladies to answer some questions for this series, and they were all too excited to participate! I give you their answers in their own words. 🙂

HollowayFamilyNorth

 

Ruth Anne Holloway, blogger at Holloway Family North, covers a lot of territory with her writing and photography. A gal after my own heart, she infuses her posts with pictures of what’s going on in the life of the Holloway Family. Ruth Anne is a bit of a domestic diva with all the delves into, from homeschooling, crocheting, photography, to DIY projects, book reading, and coffee drinking. Is there anything she can’t or won’t do? 🙂 I invite you take a look around and then head over to Holloway Family North and follow her blog!

Ruth Anne Holloway
Ruth Anne Holloway

ESTABLISHED:

I began writing at this blog Holloway Family North in August 2013.

THEME:

Mostly family/motherhood, life in general (recipes,book reviews, frugal living), lots of photography thrown in. In the past (and I am planning on starting again) I’ve written about our journey to the Catholic church and how we live our Catholic Faith.

INSPIRATION/MOTIVATION:

I initially began blogging as a way for the extended family to keep up with what was happening in our life and with the kids.  After a time it became a convenient place to work out thoughts on being Catholic and to again, let the extended non-Catholic family know what was happening in our lives.

FAVORITE ELEMENT:

My favorite aspect of the blog is the outlet it gives me to be able to share: our lives (be that photos of the kids, how we live, recipes), faith… I’ve also really enjoyed being able to connect to other bloggers.

FAVORITE POST:

Dear Mama of a Toddler was a post I wrote last summer, mostly to try to find some comic relief from my then-2year old’s non-stop mischief. But I’ve come back to that post since, especially when one of the kids does something really frustrating, and it’s a good reminder to find the good/funny/positive in a situation and *try* not to become too upset. The other one I really felt strongly about was my post on Making Sense of Hurts: Peace. I wrote this post near the end of our struggle to conceive baby #4, this really isn’t a post about infertility,but more about how I was able to find peace (at least for that moment) during a time that was a pretty big burden.

BALANCE:

Balancing blogging and family/home/spiritual life has been a bit imbalanced in recent months as we added baby #4 to our family and I’ve only just recently been getting back on the blogging band wagon. I think like anything you do that’s “extra”, be it a hobby, reading, running a side business or blogging, you have to really want it, and your heart really has to be in it. And if it is, then you’ll be able to find the time to blog, because it will be *that* important to you. And sometimes, if you have to take a step back, that’s ok, because the people that matter will still be there when you get back.

AUDIENCE:

Primarily, I hope to reach my extended family. A lot of time I do write for myself. But I also know that if I share something that can reach and be a blessing to just one person, that’s who I want to write to.
 sideways smalldesat

CATCH PHRASE/TAGLINE:

My current tagline is “the everyday adventures of a New England Catholic Family”. I decided on that because I want to highlight that first and foremost this is a family blog, where I highlight the everyday, be that adventures taking a walk, a book review, or just daily how-we-do-thing’s of life, but I also wanted to be clear that we are a Catholic family and that our daily life will reflect that in some aspect, even if it’s not expressly written in a particul post.

ADVICE:

Go for it! If you have things to say, the blog is a perfect place to say them (being respectful of other people of course)I’d second that with don’t worry about what people think of the blog, it’s content or it’s lay out, this is your space and feel free to make it how you want.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

Have a question or comment for our featured blogger? Please leave them in the comments below!

Would you {or someone you know} like to be fabulously featured?

Send an email to Martina@CatholicSistas.comand reference the Fabulously Featured series and we’ll get the ball rolling to get you or your friend featured!

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Fabulously Featured Ink Slingers Martina Series

Fabulously Featured: Sole Searching Mama

Welcome to Catholic Sistas’ newest series, featuring some of our friends in the Catholic blogging world entitled Fabulously Featured which will run on Wednesdays. I have always wanted to introduce you to some new blogs to follow and support, but seriously lacked the time to put this together before now. In a Facebook group of fellow Catholic women bloggers, I asked ladies to answer some questions for this series, and they were all too excited to participate! I give you their answers in their own words. 🙂

 

SoleSearchingMama

Susan at Sole Searching Mama brings with her writing a good balance between visual and word smithing. I love that! You step into her blog and immediately feel at home. The variety of topics captures the reader – I know it did me! – and you will want to stick around and read about the latest goings-on out in Kansas. Without further ado, let’s learn a bit more about what makes Susan’s blog tick. 🙂

Susan of Sole Searching Mama
Susan of Sole Searching Mama

ESTABLISHED:

I started blogging in 2012 when I realized that I was failing miserably at creatively crafting our family stories into the ever-popular scrapbooks. I have a sister who lives overseas, and parents who love to keep up with the happenings of our family, so it only made sense for me to share our snapshots and adventures with them through the blogosphere!

THEME:

Sometimes I wish my blog had a singular focus, because it’s kind of a Wal-Mart blog. You get a little bit of everything when you stop by! But, the heart and soul of the blog is definitely our six sons, and their adventures (LOTS of sports!), their amazing personalities, milestones, and the beautiful things they teach my husband and myself about life and love.  I also write about running, motherhood, homeschooling, healthy living, and our Catholic faith.

INSPIRATION/MOTIVATION:

Originally, I started blogging to share little stories about our family life with with friends and family. I have always enjoyed writing and taking pictures, so blogging provided a way for me to creatively share the good stuff of life with others.  What keeps me motivated when it comes to writing are my readers! They are so kind and supportive.  I am constantly humbled and blessed by their sincerity and generosity! Occasionally my readers will e-mail me questions or topics that they would like for me to write about. I’m always honored by their requests and enjoy having new topics to write about.

FAVORITE ELEMENT:

What I love most about blogging is that often times I feel that being a mom of six boys and homeschooling does not allow me to get out and minister to others through volunteer work, or to socialize with other moms as much as I would like to. Blogging provides a unique opportunity to connect with other moms, to be encouraging, and to share my faith and journey of motherhood with them in a positive way.

FAVORITE POST:

My blog is a miniature figure in the virtual world.  Most of the posts I write are read by only a few.  But, I suppose for providential reasons, I’ve been blessed to have a few posts read by a large audience. One of those well-read posts is on the topic of raising boys.

This post is for all of the young moms out there who faithfully wake up every day and give everything that they have to their families.  And, it is for all of the mom’s who have said to me over the years, “How do you do it??” Those little words have placed a great weight on my heart.  A weight of worry, that we are waking each day perceiving other moms to have perfect homes, perfect kids, perfect husbands, perfect lives.  We all know those “other moms” who never struggle, can handle the many messes of life better than we can, breezing through the diapers and soccer practices and homework with a fit physique and culinary talents that could easily make her a star on Food Network.

BALANCE:

When I first began blogging, I wrote as often as possible, sometimes waking early or staying up late to share a post. But, with six busy boys and a husband who is ill, I have honestly had to let it all go. My only advice would be to write about the things that you enjoy, not the things you think your readers want to hear about. Just be yourself! And, if you feel that you have to blog all of the time or constantly maintain your social media status, and those two (often self-imposed) expectations are stressing you out, just take a pause. If you’re a mom, aside from your relationship with Christ, NOTHING is more important than your spouse and children. We only have a short amount of time with these precious souls, to love them, to nurture them, to *experience* everyday life with them, and if we’re plugged in or distracted, we will miss it!! And, no amount of really great blogging can ever replace the beauty of real life!

AUDIENCE:

I suppose I’m primarily writing to other moms, but especially to young moms. I hope that what I write, whether it be about raising sons, loving your spouse, homeschooling, living a healthy life-style or staying connected to Christ is encouraging and supportive to them.
 Screen Shot 2015-05-27 at 11.40.57 AM

 

CATCH PHRASE/TAGLINE:

I don’t have a catch phrase or a tag line, but what’s funny is when my blog began to grow, a few really well-meaning readers kindly tried to tell me that I misspelled “Sole” and that it should be “Soul” Searching. The title of my blog is meant to reflect all of the things I think about while I’m running. Every step out on the road is a chance for me to daydream, to pray, to be thankful, to regroup, and to work out the struggles and challenges of the day and approach them with a more positive focus when I get home.

ADVICE:

My honest answer is I would encourage anyone who is considering blogging to step outside the Catholic box, and not worry about it being an overtly Catholic work.  One of my favorite bloggers, Kathryn at Team Whitaker, does an amazing job of expressing the beauty of life in a very natural way through her blog while still maintaining a very Catholic identity. Her writing appeals to so many, including non-Catholics, and I think for that reason it is a very strong tool of evangelization! If you love to craft, cook, take pictures, run – whatever it is, use your writing to share about real life and your love for Christ and your Catholic faith will naturally shine through!

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

Have a question or comment for our featured blogger? Please leave them in the comments below!

Would you {or someone you know} like to be fabulously featured?

Send an email to Martina@CatholicSistas.comand reference the Fabulously Featured series and we’ll get the ball rolling to get you or your friend featured!

Categories
Fabulously Featured Ink Slingers Martina Series

Fabulously Featured: Fine Linen and Purple

Welcome to Catholic Sistas’ newest series, featuring some of our friends in the Catholic blogging world entitled Fabulously Featured which will run on Wednesdays. I have always wanted to introduce you to some new blogs to follow and support, but seriously lacked the time to put this together before now. In a Facebook group of fellow Catholic women bloggers, I asked ladies to answer some questions for this series, and they were all too excited to participate! I give you their answers in their own words. 🙂

FineLinenandPurple

 

Holly Vaughn and her partner in crime Sarah at Fine Linen and Purple are the hot topic of discussion today on Fabulously Featured. If you ever wondered where that What I Wore Sunday series came from, wonder no more, friends! These lovely ladies are the ones who made it popular to slog into your closet on Sunday and don your clothes in a new and bold way. I know I’ve been guilty through the years of wearing what friends call the “mom uniform” to Mass. Hey, if it’s clean, isn’t wrinkled {much}, and…well, that’s pretty much it, then I’m wearing it. Who doesn’t love a little friendly peer pressure if the end result is that we take some added time to put ourselves together for Mass?! Anyway, let’s get down to the nitty gritty and learn more about Fine Linen and Purple. 🙂

Holly Vaughn
Holly Vaughn

ESTABLISHED:

Fine Linen and Purple was established in 2013, but Sarah and I took it over in December of 2014 after being long time writers.

THEME:

Faith and Fashion! We are most popular for the What I Wore Sunday Series.

INSPIRATION/MOTIVATION:

We try to inspire women to live their faith in all areas of their life, and encourage them to feel good about themselves!  We also encourage women to dress for Mass in a way that makes them feel confident, and that is respectful to the Sacraments.

FAVORITE ELEMENT:

I love What I Wore Sunday.  It isn’t about showing off high end clothes and new fashion trends.  It’s about utilizing what you have in your closet to make yourself feel confident and comfortable, and getting ideas from each other!

FAVORITE POST:

Women and the Catholic Church.  This topic spoke to me from the beginning.  A lot of society said that as a Catholic woman I should feel oppressed – and I haven’t felt that way at all!

BALANCE:

Sarah and I share ownership of the blog so that helps.  My biggest advice is to USE THE SCHEDULE BUTTON.  Write posts whenever you feel inspired and have time and schedule when you want them to post.

AUDIENCE:

Women of all faiths, but our primary audience is Catholic women.

Fine linen and Purple

CATCH PHRASE/TAGLINE:

Where Faith and Fashion Meet

ADVICE:

Don’t start a blog intending to get famous.  Start a blog for YOU, because it’s something you love.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

Have a question or comment for our featured blogger? Please leave them in the comments below!

Would you {or someone you know} like to be fabulously featured?

Send an email to Martina@CatholicSistas.comand reference the Fabulously Featured series and we’ll get the ball rolling to get you or your friend featured!

Categories
Fabulously Featured Ink Slingers Martina Series

Fabulously Featured: Real Catholic Mom

Welcome to Catholic Sistas’ newest series, featuring some of our friends in the Catholic blogging world entitled Fabulously Featured which will run on Wednesdays. I have always wanted to introduce you to some new blogs to follow and support, but seriously lacked the time to put this together before now. In a Facebook group of fellow Catholic women bloggers, I asked ladies to answer some questions for this series, and they were all too excited to participate! I give you their answers in their own words. 🙂

 

RealCatholicMom

Heather Renshaw from Real Catholic Mom strikes me as someone who would get my humor and then offer me some of hers in return. She has a ton of passion for life and the Faith and it is evident in not just her writing, but her projects. Ah, a gal who is into projects – like writing books, or co-hosting a radio show, or running women’s conferences…SHEW! Dang, girl…I get tired just reading about that and I haven’t even touched on the fam yet! She’s got a whole brood of kiddos that she swears she didn’t eat in one pic on her about page. Anyway, let’s dive into this feature and find out more about what makes Heather tick. I’d love to get to know her better, but I have this crazy feeling our schedules would never align-ha!

Heather Renshaw
Heather Renshaw

ESTABLISHED:

Real Catholic Mom began once upon a time, in 2009, and I did a re-boot of sorts last year (2014) after a way-too-long hiatus.

THEME:

Real Catholic Mom is mostly random musings about my journey as a woefully ill-prepared, tragically underpaid, outrageously multi-blessed Catholic wife and mother with some scriptural devotions and encouragement tossed in the mix.

INSPIRATION/MOTIVATION:

Gosh … why did I start blogging? Honestly, I can’t remember, exactly. I’d always written little stories and poems and essays as a kid, and maybe I just thought it would be nice to get some of what was in my head and heart somewhere “out there” instead of clogging up my cranium (because Lord knows I need all the brain space I can get). Anyway, I realize I am a really painfully inconsistent blogger. Writing usually takes a back seat to most other things in life. So, when I *am* motivated to write, it is usually because a bunch of things have lined up: I got a really good night’s sleep, and I feel the Holy Spirit has given me something to say in particular, and I *really* need to just get something off my chest, and I’m feeling particularly brave enough to push “post” … orrrrr … I have a Blessed is She (www.blessedisshe.net) deadline. LOL.

FAVORITE ELEMENT:

Hm. I suppose my favoritest is having a regular place to park my thoughts, and the subsequent sense of community I feel when what I’ve written resonates with or encourages a reader. I think of dear C. S. Lewis’s quote: “Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.'” There’s been so many instances like that since I began blogging because of something I’ve written (yet more often because of something I’ve read); it’s truly refreshing and empowering, and that sense of recognition of light in the other and acting upon it is what I like to think building the Kingdom of God on earth is about.

FAVORITE POST:

So, these posts are all sort of snapshots into my crazy life, but with a humorous spin. I don’t know if they’d be a reader’s favorite, but I like ’em.

BALANCE:

Ha, ha! I am really interested to see how the other writers respond to this question, since I’m still not exactly sure how to follow my dreams of writing more whilst chasing sweet yet demanding children all day (and sometimes night) long. I believe the ladies who consistently blog well and maintain strong online community ties yet maintain house and home to satisfaction must have super human powers! I, on the other hand, as I mentioned, don’t write as often as I’d like. When I do write, it really just means that something else is not happening; for example, right now, dishes await me in the sink. Ugh.

Seriously, though, my spiritual life has to come first. At my particular judgement, I doubt God will accept a blog entry in lieu of time I should have spent in prayer. I really try to make that the most important. And next I’ve been taking better care of myself physically in recent months (other than the sleep thing – that is often augmented with too much caffeine) so I can be a better wife and mother. And 2015 is supposed to be the year of being more intentional with quality married time. We’re a few months in. Going well so far. And the children will always need me. I’ve become accustomed to that. But my husband and I also recognize that I need time away to rejuvenate and recreate and do things I’m passionate about just like anyone else, so balancing is getting a bit (dare I say) better with his encouragement and support. Still tough. But better. Check back with me in a few months. 🙂

AUDIENCE:

I really write for other Catholic moms in the trenches of life, because that’s who I am and that’s what I know, but honestly, I would be happy for anyone to read my blog and leave with a little more joy than before they began.
 Real Catholic Mom

 

CATCH PHRASE/TAGLINE:

My tagline is “keepin’ it real in a broken + beautiful world,” because while I definitely don’t expect or encourage anyone to read my blog as a “how to” regarding “real” Catholic motherhood/womanhood, I do hope that some of what I write encourages my readers to continue fighting the good fight of faith – to keep running the race – and to be true to themselves in the process. I try to be as authentic – as real – about the joys and sorrows in my own life as I can, with an eye toward redemption and healing. I figure if God can save a wretch like me, surely there’s hope for everyone else!

ADVICE:

Obviously one’s season and circumstances in life will impact her ability to write frequently, but gosh, I would encourage someone that, if there’s a tug on her heart to write something, she should try it out and see where it leads! My experience is that there is really never going to be an ideal time to do pretty much anything, but if God wills it and you unite your efforts with His will, the two of you can make it happen.

QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS?

Have a question or comment for our featured blogger? Please leave them in the comments below!

Would you {or someone you know} like to be fabulously featured?

Send an email to Martina@CatholicSistas.comand reference the Fabulously Featured series and we’ll get the ball rolling to get you or your friend featured!