Danielle Bean

Danielle Bean, a mother of eight, is Editorial Director of Faith & Family. She is also author of My Cup of Tea: Musings of a Catholic Mom (Pauline 2005) and Mom to Mom, Day to Day: Advice and Support for Catholic Living (Pauline 2007). Her blog is a source of inspiration, encouragement, and support for Catholic women of all ages and life stages.

recent articles

Momnipotent

“Look at me!” I announced to my bleary-eyed husband when he emerged from the bedroom one morning soon after our second child was born. Carefully, I shifted tiny Eamon in the crook of one arm as I scrambled eggs, buttered toast, and poured juice with my free hand. “I can nurse the baby and cook … Read more

Not Nearly Enough

When I accepted a job as an activity director in a nursing home, I had grand ideas of what I would accomplish with the residents there. Fresh out of college, sporting my shiny new bachelor’s degree in sociology, I felt ready to change the world. Real nursing homes, I quickly found out though, are nothing … Read more

Why Taylor Swift Matters

“You’ll be the prince, and I’ll be the princess, It’s a love story Baby, just say yes.” — Taylor Swift, “Love Story” Doesn’t everyone love a good love story? Maybe not. At the feminist blog Feministing, commenter Chloe recently confessed that she enjoys listening to Taylor Swift’s music now and then, even if it’s what … Read more

Crash Call

All ten of us were in the van when it happened. Though we were only running some errands and stopping at the library, I had ignored the eye-rolling of my older kids and insisted on the entire family’s going out together. One consequence of our growing-up family, I have found, is that we more and … Read more

Vanity, Thy Name Is Mother

I have crossed over to the other side. I’m not sure when it happened, but something fundamental about my circumstances has changed. I am an old person now. I first realized it a few years ago when I was flipping through a women’s magazine and an ad caught my eye. It was the kind of … Read more

Which Will You Be?

The other morning, when I attempted to start the family van, it hesitated and then stalled. I did not panic. It does this sometimes. One thing you learn quickly as a mother of a large family with a not-so-large income is that it is necessary to be patient with your vehicles. And your appliances. These … Read more

Home Is Not a Place

It was a cool fall day ten years ago when Dan, my husband, pulled our banged-up Volvo station wagon to the side of a country road and waved his hand toward the nearby woods.     “This is it!” he beamed. I looked. I saw trees.   “Here?” I questioned him. “Right here?” He pointed to … Read more

My Prickly Priest

“Fine, then!” Stephen huffed. He tossed a handful of Uno cards across the table and stomped toward the stairs. Each step thundered through the house as he made his way to his room.   I love this prickly child. But prickly he surely is.   I’d like to blame this one’s temper on his Irish … Read more

The Grunt Work of Grace

When my husband told me that he had hired a recovering drug addict to do some carpentry work in the house this past week, I wasn’t sure what to expect. The man needed work, my husband explained, he came highly recommended by a close friend, and he could get the job done as quickly as … Read more

Ten Ways to Give the Internet a Soul

In a recent message on modern means of mass communication, Pope Benedict XVI asked us to “give the Internet a soul”:   Without fear we must set sail on the digital sea facing into the deep with the same passion that has governed the ship of the Church for two thousand years. Rather than for, albeit … Read more

One Little Thing at a Time

My life is ridiculous. Do I need to tell you this, or can you reach that conclusion all on your own when I tell you that I am a homeschooling mother of eight who also works from home? Some days, the different roles I play meld seamlessly together. “Of course I can do this!” I … Read more

Marked by the Cross

At about this time last year, I bumped into a friend at the laundromat. My mind was occupied with loaded laundry baskets and grumblings about my broken washing machine, but all that left me the moment my eyes met hers. She was in pain. Her newborn granddaughter, she told me, was gone. There were many … Read more

Cries and Compromise

Fifteen years ago, night after night, I paced the rooms of our tiny apartment with my daughter Kateri — a screaming infant — in my arms. I ran the vacuum, bounced her on my hip, and swaddled her writhing body with flannel blankets, but nothing the books recommended seemed to work. She screamed so hard … Read more

What Love Looks Like

“How do you do it all?” As a homeschooling, work-at-home mom of many, this is a question I hear fairly often.    Usually, people ask “how I do it all” when I am outside of my home, sitting in the bleachers at a basketball game or standing in line at the pharmacy. The fact that … Read more

Fake Reality

“Do you watch The Bachelor?” the woman cutting my hair the other day wanted to know.   “No,” I answered.   But then, because I don’t want to become known around town as that crazy woman who has a million kids and is completely out of touch with the real world, I added quickly, “But I did … Read more

A Mother’s Liturgy of the Hours

I grew up with a dad who prays the Liturgy of the Hours, and as a result, the Church’s daily pockets of prayer have always held a special attraction for me. Perhaps when I am an older woman, I will live the kind of life conducive to praying the Divine Office, but for now, my … Read more

Love, Honor, and Take for Granted?

“Tell me,” the wife of one of my husband’s friends began a recent phone conversation, “that you do not start your husband’s car for him every morning.” “Oh, of course not,” I told her. “Only on cold mornings I do.” Astonished silence met my ears. The discussion that followed reminded me of one that took … Read more

So Now They’re Teens

“Mo-om!” If the rolling of eyes could make a noise, my oldest daughter’s facial expression would have been deafening.   We were headed to her orthodontist appointment. It was early, but I had brushed my teeth, put on make up, and was wearing my new hat. I thought I might even look a little bit … Read more

Let the Santa Wars Begin

“How can you lie to your children?” one mom demanded of another on an online message board last week.   “How can you deprive your children of the magic of Christmas?” came the retort.   It happens every year — let the Santa Wars begin!   On one side, we have the Die-Hard Believers. These … Read more

Bunkers and Boundaries

I didn’t want it to be true.    I thought Tiger Woods was one of the good guys. After all, he worked hard at polishing his image in order to convince the world he was one of the good guys. And that polished image earned him over $100 million last year. Woods might still be a good … Read more

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