May - 2013
Family Name: Bailey
Parents: Todd & Celeste Bailey
Children: Matthew, age 21 ~ Alyssa, age 18 ~ Michael, age 15
Pets: Maddy (Cat), Appa(rat)
Tell us a little about yourselves - a paragraph or two . . . Where do you live? What parish do you attend? How did you meet?
We are the Bailey family. Todd grew up in Merrimack NH and Celeste grew up in Manchester, NH. We currently live in Goffstown (Pinardville). We met while Celeste was attending Rivier College in Nashua. Believe it or not, we met at a dance club. On the first night we met, we talked about how God has been so important in our lives. We dated for about four years. During this time, Todd converted to Catholicism. We got married in 1989. We will be celebrating our 24th year wedding anniversary in June. We have been blessed over and over again with a beautiful marriage, three awesome children; Matthew (21), Alyssa (18) & Michael (15) and a loving and supportive extended family. We have been parishioners of Ste. Marie Parish for 18 years. During those 18 years, Ste. Marie’s has provided us with so many wonderful programs that have helped us all grow closer to God… the Family Program, The Men of St. Joseph, The Son’s of Joseph, Women of Mary and Men’s Adoration to mention a few. Through the years, we have met many Holy families who have helped us flourish in our faith and family life. Understanding that family life is not always perfect, we realize that God always provides us with the graces we need to trust in His plan for our family.
What is your favorite family activity?
Our favorite family activity is camping. We started camping together since our kids were born. We still take at least one camping trip together each year. We still look forward to the special times around the campfire laughing, getting up in the morning and making breakfast together, playing a game of cards, or just taking a nice walk in the woods. This is not always an easy task getting everyone together to go camping since everyone has different work schedules & sports activities, but so far, we managed to make it happen!
What is a favorite family tradition?
When the kids were younger, Todd would open the sofa bed and make chocolate shakes and popcorn for the kids. We would all lie on the sofa bed and watch a movie or home movies of the kids when they were babies. Now that the kids are older, we still try to have a movie night. Also, on Christmas Eve, we had a Jesus parade to place baby Jesus in the manger. We had a birthday cake and cards for Jesus. The kids would dress up as Mary and Joseph and the other would carry baby Jesus as we sang happy birthday.
How does your family pray together?
We pray together at meal times. Each one of us shares what we are thankful for on that day. When the children were younger, we would have bedtime prayer. Unfortunately, as the children got older, we do this less frequently. Sometimes, we say the rosary or do lectio divina, which has been very powerful.
What does your family find most challenging to living as a Catholic family in our society?
A challenge living as a Catholic family is trying to be balanced in life; not too much work, not too many sports/activities, not too many commitments. The world today is telling us that we have to do it all and have it all. With a family and extended family needing more help, it becomes a challenge to find time to feed ourselves spiritually. We have to remember that our #1 priority is our relationship with Christ. So, we do our best to block time for prayer, adoration and extra days at Mass.
How does your family serve within the home and in the community?
Jesus has taught us how important it is to serve one another with a loving heart. Todd and I have always had great examples from our parents on how we should serve others and it always started by serving our own families first. God has helped Todd and I create our beautiful family that knows how to love unconditionally. This is a great gift to us. Because of this gift of love, we can serve one another, our extended family and other people that come into our lives. In the past 5 years, our parents have needed our emotional and physical support more than ever. Life is busy but we make time to visit, help with housework or yard work. All of us get involved. All of our children have a compassionate heart. They often take extra steps to reach out to kids that are less fortunate. We, also, try to reach out to the community as much as we can. We have visited nursing homes. Over the years, we have helped a gentleman from church with his housework, yard work and shoveling. We have organized a neighborhood food drive for the food pantry. Sometimes, it is the little acts of kindness like shoveling the neighbor’s driveway without getting paid or making a meal or dessert for a sick friend. As Blessed Mother Theresa says, “The fruit of love is service.”
Thank you Baileys!