I've been taking Anne with me to Mass a lot more often lately, and as you might assume, this is quite a heroic act of valor on my part. It seems to be that ages 1-4 are the diciest for bringing children to Mass. I used to tote Henry to Mass with me every week pretty much since he was born, but with Anne I haven't been able to do that. She was napping a lot during my usual 10 am Mass slot Sunday mornings. As well, when I teach Children's Liturgy of the Word I obviously can't bring her unless Mike were there as well.
She has finally transitioned to taking only 1 daily nap (sob!) and thus is usually awake at Mass time. Therefore, if I'm not on Children's Liturgy duty, I bring her with Henry and I. I arm myself with a sippy cup of milk, some discreet crackers, and some books, and hope for the best.
It's actually gone pretty well. Henry still whines about "having to go to church," but him having his own missal has helped considerably. I just renewed his subscription to Magnifikid! magazine, that has been a huge blessing. Maybe in a year or two he can move to a regular children's missal, but for now the weekly format in Magnifikid! is working like a charm. I don't have to worry about him too much anymore at Mass, he behaves himself quietly. Anne on the other hand likes to climb everything and generally flirt with everybody in a 2 pew radius. No major meltdowns though with her yet (fingers crossed).
Yesterday being the feast of St. Blaise, we all got our throats blessed, including Anne. She looked quite suspicious of the candles, but otherwise didn't cause any trouble. She had been inconsolable prior to Mass, so I was worried, but was soothed only by being allowed to hold her St. John of Arc peg doll. I plead guilty to keeping her saint dolls up on the mantle so that she can't destroy them because I love them so much. But she did well with St. Joan. She clutched her and calmed down, and then was unwilling to part with her, so St. Joan accompanied us to Mass. I had to pull her head out of Anne's mouth a few times but she came out of the situation unscathed. Success.
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