Overheard Therapy

Paul: Don’t be too hard on yourself, Elliott.

Elliott: Oh I don’t blame myself. I blame Ethan.

File Under: Yum!

1398 1398_ () 1398 1398

Paul made these for us on the Fourth, and they were delicious. If you’re planning your menu for the week, might I suggest this sandwich? Yes, I might.

(this picture is from the site, but ours looked pretty good, too.)



Family Identity

1397 1397_ () 1397 1397 I plop Henry on the couch to get him dressed and he falls back faster than I anticipate.

“I’m so sorry,” I say, “that was too rough.”

“He likes it,” says Ethan, noting Henry’s laughter.

He likes it,” I say, “but I don’t think his neck does.”

“Henry likes the rough stuff,” Ethan assures me. “He’s a Balducci boy.” 1397″ .


New Media Celebration!

1396 1396_ () 1396 1396 Weekly column

Several years ago, around Augie’s second birthday, I got a phone call that would change my life.

“Did you know,” said my friend on the other end, “that all four of your boys are standing on the top of your truck beating it with bats?”

I think I’ve mentioned this phone call before, how the truck belonged to Paul’s dad, and the boys were, as my friend informed me, standing on the roof wielding plastic bats. That phone call signaled a new chapter in my life titled “Oh My Goodness: Life With Boys,” the chapter in which I still live.

What was significant about that day was that the reality of life with boys set in, and I realized soon after that call that mothering boys was going to take a ton of work, and also a hearty sense of humor. In the midst of my daily grind, I started looking for ways to laugh.

Around that time, I decided to start writing about my adventures at a website on the Internet called a “blog” (short for web log) – which is an online diary that anyone can view. I named my blog Testosterhome, and for the last four years, I have been using it to write about this crazy life with boys – a life I never imagined but that I absolutely love.

I have been amazed, over these last few years, what the Internet can do. Through my blog, I have connected with a wide variety of people, not just moms with lots of boys, and have been encouraged and inspired countless times. I’ve also had the chance to encourage others, and to try and show that raising kids can be (mostly) fun and certainly worthwhile.

The Internet (if used properly) can be an incredible and positive form of communication.

Recently, I attended the first annual Catholic New Media Celebration in Atlanta, a day-long conference that looked at the importance of understanding and using technology in order to help spread the Gospel. Several years ago, in his apostolic letter The Rapid Development, Pope John Paul II encouraged those working in the media not to fear technology, but to use it to build God’s kingdom.

“Do not be afraid of new technologies,” he wrote. “These rank ‘among the marvelous things’ – inter mirifica – which God has placed at our disposal to discover, to use and to make known the truth, also the truth about our dignity and about our destiny as his children, heirs of his eternal Kingdom.”

The New Media conference was an opportunity to connect with other Catholic writers as well as television and radio personalities who are doing just that – using their gifts and talents to build the Church. Through this new technology, all of us have the ability to spread the truth of God’s love to a segment of the population that traditional broadcast and newspaper won’t necessarily reach.

When I started my blog, I didn’t have a sense of purpose beyond a quite selfish “just trying to make it through the day.” The boys were very little and life then was very intense. But writing about little bits of my day, even if just for my own eyes to read, helped me want to be the mother God wanted me to be.

I have been amazed at the feedback these simple stories have gotten, and now realize that we all, no matter what God has called us to do, can inspire others through our yes to Him.

Spreading the Gospel doesn’t necessarily mean quoting the Catechism and reciting scripture. While those are certainly important and necessary tools, so often we can most effectively preach without preaching. Striving to live a life totally committed to Christ – through wholehearted commitment to our vocation – is many times the best inspiration. 1396″> . ,