Saturday, September 12, 2009

Celebrating Mary's Birthday and Most Holy Name this week!

Tuesday, September 8th, was the Nativity of Mary - Mary's birthday, that is! Caroline and I made a blueberry cheesecake as a "birthday cake" - the white cheesecake symbolizes Mary's purity, and the blueberries are symbolic of her traditionally blue clothing. Here's where we found the cheesecake recipe.

Caroline stirred the sour cream portion of the recipe... as you can see, she chose to wear all blue today herself, "because Mary wore blue!"

I thought this idea was really neat... it also came from the link above. We placed ten candles around the cheesecake and as we lit each one, we said a Hail Mary, completing one decade by the time we'd lit all ten candles. now, Cecilia is used to us saying a decade of the rosary after dinner sometimes (I am wanting to make that a daily thing, but sometimes it is hard when you have little girls who really need to be in bed by 7:30!), but we do it on the couch in the den. She was entranced by the candle-lighting at first, but then we she realized that she wasn't getting the blueberries after about eight Hail Marys, she began saying, "Awwdone pray!" When we continued to say the prayers, she began screeching, "NO!!!!!!!!" over and over. It was funny, considering the mod with the dimmed lights and candles!

When we finished praying the decade of the rosary, we sand Hapy Birthday to Mary, and Caroline blew out the candles!

The top layer looks pretty unappealing because I subbed Sucanat for the white sugar... I bet it would have looked nicer with the white sugar! I also subbed Sucanat in the cream cheese layer, which called for a half cup of white sugar. It was very yummy, not too sweet or rich, but just right!

Today is the feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary (makes sense that we'd celebrate her naming a few days after her birth, right?). Earlier this week, we made a few preparations. I made an outline of the letters to make Mary's name and drew a little sketch for Caroline to paint using some watercolors I found at a local store. Of course, Cecilia did not want to be left out! We did this on Thursday.

Caroline got the paper damp with a sponge brush and then painted the letters whatever colors she wanted. I love that the watercolors are big - perfect for little hands.

Yesterday, we made Mary name cookies using our wonderful new alphabet cookie cutters. We made pumpkin rollout cookies... my favorite recipe for cut-out cookies. It is wonderful to work with and doesn't tear and stick horribly the way some rollout doughs do. And - it has pumpkin in it! Agan, I sub Sucanat for brown sugar and sub some whole wheat pastry flour for the white, and it becomes more nutritious... until we put some frosting on them, that is!

Caroline likes to use her own little rolling pin.

Ready to go into the oven...

Mmm, licking the beaters! This is right after we made the frosting for the cookies... a cream cheese frosting. I just made a small amount using half a block of cream cheese, a couple tablespoons of butter, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla, and about a half cup of powdered sugar - which made it plenty sweet, I thought, despite the fact that the recipe called for a full cup of the sugar!

Caroline helps to frost the cookies

We tinted some of the frosting blue and left some white... I am really wanting some all-natural food coloring and sprinkles. I rarely use food coloring because I don't like my kids to eat it... actually, I didn't let Cecilia have any of the blue cookies anyway! I also left a few plain, too.

Here's Caroline's finished watercolor painting - we hung it up on the china cabinet in the dining room.

And, I finally made the chasuble for Marian feast days for our wooden priest. Technically, priests doesn't wear blue on these days except in shrines dedicated to Mary... I think. But, our priest isn't in a specific church, so I thought the blue-trimmed chasuble would be helpful in reinforcing the Marian feasts throughout the year. I really like how this one turned out, with the blue and gold... and now I wish I'd made the others a bit more fancy, too!

No comments: