January 31, 2012

Feast of St. John Bosco

"Everything and everyone is is won by the sweetness of our words and works."

More Prayers and Sacrifices Needed

Please pray for my ever-joyful and loving Aunt Helen who has beaten breast cancer twice already and I just received word that it's back again.  Her treatments will be aggressive and I know she could use any prayers and sacrifices anyone would be willing to offer for her and her family.

Also, please pray and sacrifice for Fr. Pedro, one of our beautiful priests, who will be having surgery on Feb 10th to remove a brain tumor that returned.  His brother priests could also use some prayers as well as much will be asked of them in addition to all God already asks of them.  Oh to have such faithful, dedicated and joy-filled priests! What a blessing!  But those are thoughts for another time, my thoughts right now are on prayer and sacrifices.

A word on sacrifices.... sacrifices go a long ways.  Anything can become a sacrfice... a gift to God... by merely offering up any and all acts in our day whether it be a prayer, a joy, a suffering, a good deed, a smile when you feel like weeping.  Fasting can come in all forms and isn't just limited to food.  The world is wide open to offering everything as an act of love to God.

And if you feel you have extra prayers and sacrifices left over, I'll take them!

January 30, 2012

Urgent Prayers

Please pray for Richard Blaney who is in his last hours/days.  May God bless him with a holy and happy death. Please pray for the family as well, during this time of suffering.

January 29, 2012

The Crashing Sea of Galilee

The Storm on the Sea of Galilee
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Matthew 8,23-27.
And when he entered into the boat, his disciples followed him:
And behold a great tempest arose in the sea, so that the boat was covered with waves, but he was asleep.
And they came to him, and awaked him, saying: Lord, save us, we perish.
And Jesus saith to them: Why are you fearful, O ye of little faith? Then rising up, he commanded the winds, and the sea, and there came a great calm.
But the men wondered, saying: What manner of man is this, for the winds and the sea obey him?

The Gospel from TLM for today... and I love great artwork... Can you find Our Lord in the picture above?  I heard the following little passage during a homily today.  What great hope it brings!  Our Hope is in the Name of the Lord, now and forever....

Our journey to heaven is very much like a sea voyage. That means lots of unpredictable things will happen to us… such as times of calm and times of storm… times of hot and times of cold… enemies lurking about trying to sink or corrupt the ship… sharks circling in the waters… etc. Good news: all theses things that confront us are part of creation. No matter what they are, they are only part of the created universe. Some will be more spiritual than others… such as the will of other men or the will of demons. Yet, they are all created.

Just a Bit of Nothing Much

I've been on a bit of a picture-taking hiatus.  But sat down today and checked out all 4 cameras and found that the children snapped some shots.  And took a number of videos.

 If you can believe it, Marigold turned 8 months old.  And loves her bath with the Barbarian.... AKA Poppy.
 Eowyn and Marigold.
 Galadriel and Poppy
 What?!  I think even a man could see that these don't match, however, and I kid you not... one of the children... Pippin I believe.... said that one of the shoes came off the sock in the wash... Mind you... the shoe/sock is an all-in-one-dealie.  Another said that it was alright because her feet would be inside her bunting and no one would see them.  Um... not ok with me. 

 There was a building of the snow fort.

 This is Rosie standing up.

 Off to other parts of the yard for more snow.
 This is all the kids.... including Sam standing up.  Read:  it's over 5 foot 10 inches (at least I think that is how tall Sam is.... but he hasn't been measured for a week so who knows.
So... if you come here sometime in April July, and you wonder why there is still snow in the driveway.... you know why.
And back in where it is warm the toddlers are.... um... flying on their stomachs like a baby before he can crawl?  Just sayin'.....

Spirituality of a 2 Year Old

Tinko witto tar, up above the Guy so high.

To the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star... kinda...
I'm just glad she's contemplating God a little.... albeit with a little bit too much familiarity, but it's not surprising since she calls our priests by their first names... only....  no Father So-and-so for Poppy, it's just So-and-so.  *blush*

Feast of St. Francis de Sales

St. Francis de Sales is one of my favorite saints.... and also came into our home on Christmas in the form of a relic, so I consider him one of our patrons.  If you have not read his book, Introduction to the Devout Life, it is excellent.  I might add... my thought through-out the book was "This is the introduction?! Sounds like perfection."  But alas... he also has, what I'd call the sequel... Treatise on the Love of God.  Which I have yet to read... and perhaps, given my lack of devout-ness, may never be able to get through.  But there's hope...  So here are a few words of many, many, many favorite quotes of mine from St. Francis de Sales, what a rich saint... rich in what it is to be really rich....

On Friendship:
Friendships begun in this world will be taken up again, never to be broken off.
♥ A quarrel between friends, when made up, adds a new tie to friendship.
Make friends with the angels, who though invisible are always with you. Often invoke them, constantly praise them, and make good use of their help and assistance in all your temporal and spiritual affairs.
(I would add to make friends with the saints as well... their lives give us hope)
With Self:
Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections.
Have patience with all things, But, first of all with yourself. Do not wish to be anything but what you are, and try to be that perfectly.

On Gentless of Spirit
Never be in a hurry; do everything quietly and in a calm spirit. Do not lose your inner peace for anything whatsoever, even if your whole world seems upset.
(I know people who would say that one summarizes me HAHAHAHAHAHAHA)
Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength.

Just some things to work on this week....

And I must add on one more that I read today while I was doing my spiritual reading on the lives of the saints and if you find yourself suffering from any form of despair, call upon St. Francis de Sales:
♥ Lord, if I am never to see Thee in Heaven, this at least grant me, that I may never curse nor blaspheme Thy Holy Name.  If I many not love Thee in the other world - for in Hell none praise Thee - let me at least every instant of my brief existence here love Thee as much as I can."
After he made that pure act of love, the despair left him and he was filled with deep peace in his soul.


Gift for Eowyn

Saints Sarbelius and Barbea

I read about Saint Sarbelius and Barbea this morning.  They were a brother and sister who were tortured with red-hot irons prior to being executed.... I decided to sit back and enjoy my life of ease.

And as I typed that... poor Marigold is suffering a martyrdom's death..... whoever cleaned the dining area swept the floor too well so she had nothing to forage under the table.  Seriously.... dustbunnies and anything served in a dustpan are her favorite foods.  Or at least that is where she goes for dessert.

Clerical Attire

I kid you not. It's for real. Green Clerical Shirts. Just in time for "Paddy's day" (so as not to insult St. Patrick)  There is even a nice flourescent Leprechuan Green at Amazon. (!!)  Just be sure to ask your favorite priest(s) whether he would prefer one of these nice shirts or a good Irish beer.  I know I don't even need to ask! :D

January 27, 2012

Signs of the Times

I took Sam in to open up a bank account.  I'm seriously scared... it was signing up for driver's ed yesterday and opening a bank account today.  On our way home he noticed every driverway had these little orange bags and he said we should see if we got one. I told him it was most likely a phone book. 
"A phone book? What's that?"
"It's a book with people's phone numbers in it."
"What do you do with that?"
My first thought was "You have a toddler sit on it to reach the table."  but then I was beginning to get perplexed wondering what part of my children's education I was very seriously missing.... like logic or something.  A few seconds later it dawned on me...
"Oh, well, you see people didn't used to have everyone's phone numbers stored in their phone, they had to actually look them up if they didn't memorize them."
"Oh" with the tone of "Was this while you were growing up during the Civil War?"

(Now time for a confession, I will admit it went through my head, does anyone even use a phone book? Doesn't everybody just look it up on the internet?)

January 26, 2012


As an aside, I think what disturbs my mathematical mind is that the calendar "ends" on 12-21-20-12... I think it would have been much more interesting if it ended on 12-20-20-12....   or 12-21-21-12.... Sigh.  I admit, I'm a weird numbers kind of gal.  I'm *really* curious though, how are the Y2K people preparing for the world ending this time?  (from what I understand it's ended many times already, I must have been too busy with all these kids to notice)   Our stock pile for Y2K consisted of an emergency package of Snickers bars.  I know the food and wine in Heaven is really good so I can't think of anything I could bring... but a pure soul....  For those planning on moving into a hotter place, a stock pile of water probably won't quench the unquenchable fire for very long.... :D

The good news is that the Mayans were considerate enough to consider that Hobbit fans will get a week to enjoy the movie prior to ....  to.... to... whatever.

January 23, 2012

Happy Feast of St. Ildephonsus

Happy Feast Day to the Father of a Beautiful Spiritual Family.  Like Father like sons... and daughters.  Apples don't fall far from the tree....

If I had to pick a quote that reminds me most of Fr. Alfonso it would be this

Lost to myself I stayed, my face reclining on the Beloved,
everything ceased, and I abandoned myself,
throwing my cares among the lilies to lie forgotten.
St. John of the Cross

The success of a Beautiful Spiritual Family is found when the children learn to recline as St. John the Apostle did at the heart of Our Lord.   This is what Fr. Alfonso does, brings his spiritual sons and daughters to the heart of the Lord.  For there, we are never failed.
My favorite poem he wrote is this

If I should flee from your side,
Search for me again, my friend,
And, after having found me,
Take me back to the path,
to the place where you first found me.

and this

The murmur of the forest was heard
And far from there the turtle dove cooed,
When your sweet eyes looked at me
And mine in tears were bathed.
Spoke to you of my misery, quickly, more than speedily,
But shamefully and you asked me to cease my crying
And sing the sweet songs of love
And so my sins went into your hands,
Lost and forgiven and forgotten

Happy Feast Day to one of the most beautiful priests I've ever met.... and met in real life only 3 times but have
met on the computer at least once a week
.... and met numerous times, uncountable, in prayer and spiritual readings.

January 20, 2012

Happy Birthday Frodo

 Frodo turned 12.  His cake of choice was chocolate mint brownies.... each of the 3 layers has a stick of butter in each layer.  As previously mentioned he desired Octopus which they say they eat in Spain.  And not mentioned previously was that he wanted Eggplant Parmesan.  I knew how to do the Eggplant Parmesan but the Octopus Squid I had to ask someone-who-knows-about-this-kind-of-fare how to cook it. I chose the sauteed in garlic oil and parsley since I was told that was scrumdillyumscious (crum and yum in the same word... hm...).  I wasn't sure how to prepare the Squid for frying and it's  a good thing I looked it up as I would have thrown the whole thing in the pan.  But a squid has alot of gooey stuff inside.

 So first I watched a youtube in how to clean it... oh my... then I watched-and-hacked.  Please note, Squids are very slimy hence the rubber gloves.  I am keeping the pictures "small" for the weak stomached. You can click and enlarge them if you like.
 The experience brought me back to 10th Grade Biology....

 This is a piece of plastic that is up the spine (?) of the squid.  It's a milestone to pull it out.
 I think I wasn't suppose to cut into that bubble thing.  We wondered if that was the ink pot.
 This was the other bubble thing.
The directions said to "cut into rings" but I couldn't figure out how to cut a flat object into rings so I just cut it into strips.  I know, it looks like bacon, tentacles and tiny elephant ears.    I would like you to know... however... that it tasted pretty good and wasn't rubbery.... not much anyway.  Not quite so tender as my lovely friend's little cute squids but not tough either.  Much more tender than any calamari I ever had before. I really think I need a nice white chef hat.

January 18, 2012

Weird Weather

 This time last week we were basking in a beautiful and glorious 53 degree day.

 The kids were in the "pine woods" felling (dead) trees (no upsetting of any Ents in our woods) to work on their "house and barn". 

 Short sleeves, long sleeves, spring jacket, winter jacket....
 snowpants... you just can only take a wild guess in our neck of the woods what to wear.

 January and 53 degrees.  Amazingly lovely.

 Galadriel giving the ax a try.

 Shortly thereafter it began to snow.... which of course it meant it dropped some 20+ degrees.

 The Master Shoveler was the only one who wasn't rootin' for snow.

 I'm.... not.... sure.... what... or... why....?

 Marigold is working on her "finishing school" skills.

 Frodo is almost 12 and in our house the birthday kid gets to decide what he wants to eat for the day and at somepoint we take the birthday kid out to eat.  Frodo said he wanted octopus.  (hello? this is america? mom's a chicken-pork-beef-n-potatoes gal!  and you want octopus?!)  Soooo... what did Aragorn bring home today from the chinese gas station?  SQUID.  Now I had squid recently when a lovely friend of mine made some... mind you... cooked in its own ink... but they were little cute dainty squids that I initially mistook for cute little peppers grilled in a carmalized butter sauce.  But I can handle cute unique foods.  But this squid is huge.  And what does one do with it?  Anyone want to take me out to eat on Friday evening?

Marigold thinks she's skyping this awesome priest in Spain and carries on a conversation while I listen to his recorded homily.  Pippin will occasionally pop his head in and say hello and then ask, "Can he hear me?"   Thankfully no.

Incidentally, this morning it was *minus* 17 degrees on our way to Mass.... tomorrow promises windchills of *minus* 15-25 degrees.  Just sayin'......

My question is, "Why did the pioneers live here in the winter?!"

Fashion Statement

Just making a fashion statement.
This is what happens when you happen to know a Race Car Driver.

Just curious how well you know my kids.... which two are these?

January 17, 2012

Beautiful 21st Century Music

Kevin Allen is an amazingly talented 21st century composer who writes polyphonic music suitable to sing alongside Palestrina and Victoria.  If your heart and soul doesn't swell while listening to it... there is something wrong with you. :D
Click HERE to listen to the practice videos
And.... in case you are wondering.... you can order the CD Motecta Trium Vocum with Amazon Prime.  :D

January 15, 2012

Why is it....

.... when a 2 year old drinks Holy Water... it doesn't help?

Just curious.

January 10, 2012

Three Reasons

Three Reasons we haven't had snow.....

The wood shed is full
We bought a snow plow.
We build a little car port.
Of course... now that I said this.... I should check the weather forecast.

Beautiful sunshiney weather

After seeing a picture of me from 20+ years ago.... I thought I best get out for some extra walks!  Not to mention the fresh air does me alot of good!

Tis the seaons to build a fort.