Monday, June 30, 2008

A Lovely Visit...


...but much too short. on thursday a good friend of mine from college called me and said that she and her family would be in town on friday night and wanted to see if we would be able to meet them. we jumped at the opportunity and headed out to a camp ground about twenty minutes from our house where they were staying the weekend. my friend and her husband (also a good friend of ours) were in our wedding over nine years ago and we have only seen them twice since then so it was wonderful to spend some time with them and get to know their kids. they have five children, seven and under, and they are all so cute. we were only able to spend a few hours but the kids were able to have smores and we were able to do some catching up. it was a wonderful night and we thank God for the opportunity.

Simply Monday - June 30th

make sure you stop over at "The Simple Woman" to check out the other entries this week and register yours.

outside my window...it is dark, the crickets are singing and there is a light breeze.

i am thinking...that i am disgusted with the kodak company, their rudeness and their lack of customer service. it's a long story, the saga of my printer...and i'm fed up.

i am thankful for...a husband that calls kodak for the 86th time when i just can't anymore.

from the kitchen...tonight we had a great dinner (i'm a late poster today) of oven baked turkey breast, carrots, mashed potatoes and rolls. the best part is that everything but the turkey breast came all ready to go from a good friend. :) thanks patty!

i am creating...a mess while i try and pack away last years school stuff and get this years stuff out of shipping boxes.

i am going...to take care of this printer problem on my own, cause kodak surely isn't interested in helping me.

i am wearing...jeans and a blue striped shirt with a white tank insert

i am reading...anything that has to do with the liturgy that i can get my hands on.

i am hoping...that things fall into place. that has seemed to be my "mantra," for the lack of a better word, lately. there are things in a few different areas of my life that are completely out of my control and i just have to trust Him that they will fall into place the way they are supposed to.

i am hearing...the ceiling fan and the nightly news.

around the house...there is clutter that needs to be tackled and a little eight year old girl that needs to be given an ultimatum on keeping her room in an acceptable manner.

one of my favorite things...is a field full of fireflies.

a few plans for the rest of the week...get this place cleaned from top to bottom so i can enjoy two cookouts this weekend and then be ready for my mother's visit.

here is a picture thought i am sharing with you...

Friday, June 27, 2008

Looking Out My Window

i did some sprucing up of my kitchen window yesterday so i thought i would post a few pictures.first we have the veggie tales clock that i am too chicken to try and mount in the wall. people are often surprised to learn that my husband and i asked for this for a wedding gift and that it doesn't belong to one of the kids. also with the veggies you will find st. joseph. this statue is the one we placed in our window when we were praying our novena to sell our old house and move into this one. so, he stays in our kitchen window of our new house where we see him frequently and remember to thank him for petitioning our Heavenly Father for the blessing of this home.this center section of the window is where i did the major sprucing. this section used to be occupied by a larger, fern-esque potted plant. it just wasn't doing well for some reason in the window, as was evidenced by half of its leaves dying. so, i gave it a trim and relocated it to the back of the toilet in the half bath. we'll see if it likes the ambiance in there better. i bought these gerber daisies at the craft store awhile back thinking they would look perfect in these decorator coca cola bottles i had saved. i just lover gerber daisies. they are so bright and cheery.and over here we see the sea monkeys in their "underwater metropolis" and the little gray cat that my kids insist "has to watch the sea monkeys." ok, whatever, i'm not going to fight it. :) also in the window is my favorite counter top cleaner. it'm method. i just love the scent and it makes cleaning just a bit cheerier. also, a new addition to the window is the lovely Mary holy card. we received this at our friend's ordination this past weekend and put it in the window as a reminder to pray for him daily.

well, that's my window. i'd love to see yours. if you show us pictures of your window put a link in the comments here. have a lovely day! we are off to the library. :)

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Prayers - Update

i wanted to wait to post this until something had been posted by her family. baby cate, for whom i have been asking your prayers, has gone home to be with her Heavenly Father. not quite the ending that all of us were praying for but her last hours are a beautiful story, not to mention all of the good that came out of her last days. please read what her parents have to say (make sure you have a big box of kleenex) about this tremendous little evangelist. to the cantrells...we here at our house are praying for you without ceasing and more importantly are hugging our children a little tighter and trying to be the best parents we can be in the time He has given us. thank you for your beautiful example and for sharing your little saint with us.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Take Me Out To The Ballgame

on monday night we were lucky enough to get my husband's company seats for the lancaster barnstormers game. the kids really love going to watch the games (and play on the nice playground that they have at the park, but we managed to watch the whole game this time without visiting the playground).

our littlest fan is obsessed with this guy... that is cylo, the barnstormers mascot. she was really excited when she got to meet him...and see herself on the jumbotron. :)
we had a wonderful night out. and of course free tickets always hit the spot.
especially when they are just a few rows back from the field right by home plate. and the home team won. how can you get any better than that?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Simply Monday - June 23rd


this morning i was clicking around at the few blogs that i read everyday and that reminded me to post this. my memory, well, she ain't what she used to be and something that only happens once a week. let's just say those days are too far apart to develop a habit for me so i'm thinking...big ol' sticky note on the computer screen. :) anywho, for all it's worth...here we go.

outside of my window - is a quite street with just a few people walking or riding their bikes. it's so lovely that right now there are only a few houses on our road and then a big field with a few deserted half finished roads. if i were to look out the back window though i would see the builders working at a sprinter's pace finishing what seems like a new house every week or so.

i am thinking - about everything that needs cleaned around here. after moving into the new house i have lost all semblance of a cleaning schedule and we are still trying to figure out what goes where sometimes.

i am thankful for - a house to live in (despite its pestilence), a husband who puts up with my junk and a Church, who despite the faults in Her people still holds and teaches the truth.

from the kitchen - the kitchen is an absolute mess right now as we found ants in our pantry early yesterday morning just one hour before we were slated to leave for baltimore. the contents of the pantry is now in a stack in the middle of the kitchen floor and piled on the table so that the bug man can come today and hopefully eradicate the little vermin. yes, where our house sits used to be a corn field and i'm sorry that the little buggers have been uprooted but they need to figure out it's not a field anymore, pack up their bags and relocate to the nearest cornfield...which is just about a block away. :) but i am trying to figure out what would be quick and easy to whip up for dinner. my husband just got some free baseball tickets from work so we will be heading out to the game as soon as he comes home.

i am wearing - just a minute...ok, now i'll answer. a navy blue t-shirt and jeans accented by bare feet. (i was embarrassed to enter two weeks in a row of pjs) not wearing anything spectacular with all the cleaning i'm hoping to get done today. i have a habit of ruining all of my clothing...the very first time i wear it...so i don't want to wear anything great. also, my apron is so ugly that it actually makes me feel worse than grubby old clothes so i guess an apron should be added to the "to do" list.

i am reading - "the spirit of the liturgy" by then Cardinal Ratzinger and balancing it out with "the tale of desperaux" by kate dicamillo. i put aside "the drama of atheist humanism" for awhile because i need to read "the spirit of the liturgy," for a few really important reasons that i won't get into.

i am hoping - for a miracle in the health of baby cate
and peace for her parents.

one of my favorite things - is to listen to complete quiet. it doesn't happen all that much with three kids eight and under...but when it does, it's music. :)

a few plans for the rest of the week - plan a meeting i really need to have, hopefully go to the produce auction again, clean the garage and clean the garage. (can you tell how much that needs to be done and how much it's driving me crazy?)

here is a picture thought i am sharing with you - i know it's supposed to be a picture thought but i have to share with you a bit on this one too. this a picture of the first mass of our friend, fr. john rapisarda, who was ordained a priest for the archdiocese of baltimore on saturday. the young man sitting next to him is another one of our friends who was recently ordained a deacon for the diocese of trenton. it was such an exciting thing to see the two of them on the altar together, serving mass. i know the two of them will accomplish great things in the Church. they are the type of men we rely on for this "new springtime." please keep them in your prayers.

God bless your day! please visit "the simple woman" for others participating today and to participate yourself.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

You Are A Priest Forever


today we were honored to attend the priestly ordination of a good friend from college. fr. john rapisarda was ordained a priest for the archdiocese of baltimore this morning at the basilica of the national shrine of the assumption of The Blessed Virgin Mary. the joy radiating from his face brought tears to your eyes. it was such a humbling moment to see someone whom you have spent countless hours through the years talking, joking and singing with answering the call of Our Lord on his life. giving his life in complete service to God and His Church. in fact, when called by the bishop at the beginning of mass he stepped forward with the proclamation "i come ready to serve." i watched his ordination and i began thinking of something i saw on youtube recently. it is called "it's morning again in the Catholic Church." seeing someone so young, so faithful, so compassionate and so holy ordained is such a breath of hope. in fact, before the final blessing at the ordination mass (i have no idea if this is traditional or not), the bishop and the newly ordained went to the center of the altar. the bishop knelt before fr. john and received his blessing. i thought this was such a powerful sign of how The Church needs the young men who are joining the priesthood. they are the ones whom i believe will continue what is already in motion. they will fully return Her to the beauty and reverence that is rightfully Hers. i have no doubt he will be a very holy priest. his love for The Lord, for His Mother and for His Church shows forth in everything he does. and i have no doubt that he will accomplish great things.we were joking with fr. john this afternoon about becoming a bishop some day. he just laughed and said that would be the day that the Pope had to scrape the bottom of the barrel. i don't think so and only the Lord knows what his future holds. but there is one thing that i know. today The Church received a tremendous blessing in the ordination of fr. john rapisarda. may he live a long and holy life serving The Church that he loves and teaching Her people the truth. God bless you john. we love you more than words can express.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Update On Baby Cate

for those of you who might not be following the blog, things did not go well this morning. please intensify your prayers, offer sacrifices, proclaim a fast, whatever you can do. also, a fund has been set up in her name to help with mounting medical bills and expenses. here is how you can donate:

"You can go to ANY bank and have funds wired to the CHASE account. You will need to let your bank know that funds need to be wired to:

Bank: Chase Bank
Bank Routing Number: 111000614
Account Name: Catherine Cantrell
Account Number: 2910552567

If you currently bank with chase you can walk in to any Chase Bank and fill out a deposit slip with their account name and number and it will be deposited on the spot. Or you can do it online at www.chase.com

Thank you!! Please contact me with any questions or call chase bank at: 1-888-MYCHASE

~*maureen
504.813.9517
maureen@adoreworship.com"

Another Installment Of (Drumroll Please)

how did they get here? i know. you're riveted to the screen.

search #1 - bernadette farrell - here we go again. poor people who are surfing the net looking for some really contrite little number about feeling the Spirit of God so they can accompany their liturgical dancers on the altar next week and then shazam...they find me railing on her...and haugen and haas. well, i guess i crushed that dream.

search #2 - tiny jumping bugs in pool - yes, the tiny jumping bugs are still here...do i have a pool?...no...if someone would like to build me one i'm sure the bugs would love to live there too.

search #3 - tiny jumping insects in the kitchen - as a matter of fact, they are. but like i said, i'm sure they would prefer a pool.

search #4 - saint gianna's glove - you can visit it near phillie at the church of the nativity i believe it's called. i'm a big, big fan. i highly recommend it. and while you're out this way you can stop at the shrines of st. katherine drexel, padre pio, st. john neumann and our lady of the miraculous medal to name a few.

search #5 - layne bryant outlet aurora farms - have i shopped at the layne bryant outlet?...yes...do i shop anything but their deep discount racks?...no...do i have any clue where aurora farms is?...no. odds are, i'm probably not going to be much help on this one.

search #6 - kids pee on the floor - aah, this has to be my favorite one. it just goes to show you, if my blog comes up in the top twenty searches for this...we are talking high brow comedy here. allow me to go rustle up daisy mae and cletus and head us down to the ceeeement pond fo' a day o' swimmin'.

have a great day everybody...and remember to pray for baby cate...this morning is a big one. may God grant her healing and strengthen her family in His love and mercy.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Isn't It Great...


...to have a sliding glass door?(i think she looks quite alot like those people in that episode of the twilight zone where the pretty lady wakes up from surgery and they say it was unsuccessful because she doesn't look like one of them.)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

The Little Man...

today my little man turned five. it's hard to believe that is has been five years since he came into our lives after 12 hours of intense labor. it's hard to believe that is has been five years since he bounced around in his exersaucer or johnny jump up with his crazy black hairdo and his contagious grin.today i took a good look at him and couldn't believe how big he has grown or how he is becoming such a little man. his serious looks can stop you cold but when he smiles...it still lights up the entire room. i love you little man. no matter how big you get, you will always be my little boy.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Prayers

hello all. i wanted to post a prayer request for a beautiful little girl that could use all the prayers you can muster.her name is cate and we know her daddy from college. please click over to her blog to read all about her and to unite in prayer with her family for this beautiful little child of God.

Two Of My Favorite Things

hey, if oprah can do it...i can too. but don't expect to go home with them.

#1.my pampered chef food chopper - i already liked it for chopping up a multitude of things from veggies, to chocolate, to stuff for breading but today my interpeeps, i found a new use for it that i am absolutely overjoyed to announce......it chops up fruit for jam in a lovely manner. i started to make jam yesterday from these lovely berries......from our very own patch and i realized that my potato masher must have been an unknown casualty in the move because it is nowhere to be found. so, i tried a fork. that was definitely not working. how about a bigger cooking fork? nope. and then i thought i would try the chopper. B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L! it even juiced them slightly and i could do it all in the one bowl without strawberry juice flying all over and staining everything. with fresh fruit season here in full swing i am thinking of tons of other things i can do with this now.

#2. the small cookie scoop i picked up at target on an after christmas clearance for about 49 cents (and let me tell you, that price makes the triumph even better). now that i have one of these, i really don't know why i ever made chocolate chip cookies without one. but today, i am happy to report that i used it to make homemade meatballs.and let me tell you that the lack of the squishy meatiness between my fingers almost brought a tear to my eye. aren't they lovely?

so there you have it. my little tidbit for the day.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Menu Monday

woohoo, two posts in one day? yep, i know. i have actually been telling myself that i was going to post this every monday but well...that was about two months ago. so, here you go. it's the first installment of menu monday that is actually occuring on a monday. will wonders never cease! this is actually all about accountability. you see, without a menu plan, i fall apart. so, if i promise the imaginary tens of thousands of readers that there will be a menu for the entire week here on monday...then maybe it will happen. ;) so, without further ado...the menu. oh, and if you see something you like, you can e-mail me or leave a comment for the recipe.

sun. (wow, it's even a freebie for a day that already happened, how can you beat that?)
- beef kabobs - these are a favorite of mine. they involve beef, red pepper,
focaccia bread and olive oil. how can you go wrong?

mon. - french toast and sausage - tonight we will have french toast with some packaged
turkey sausage links. i will also be using the extra two loaves of bread i
bought to continue on a french toast making frenzy that i'll freeze and use for quick breakfasts during the week.

tues. - veggie beef soup w/goldfish, garlic bread and homemade applesauce - this is another favorite around here. you use those birds eye frozen veggies and pasta with the garlic butter in this one. it's easy and really yummy. we like to put the little goldfish crackers on top of ours.

wed. - this is my little man's birthday so dinner is his choice. he has picked pizza, doritos and lemonade.

thurs. - turkey burgers on the grill, red potato packets and fruit.

fri. - spaghetti, carrots, salad and bread (can't get much easier than that)

sat. - homemade chicken nuggets - saturday is usually homemade pizza at our house (i instituted this a few years ago to give myself one day off from menu planning) but this week we have to do something a bit quicker because we are attending the priestly ordination of a wonderful friend of ours from college. these nuggets are some that i made in a day of frantic nugget prep about a month ago.

sun. - grilled chicken salads (with all the fixins of course...leaf lettuce, spinach, carrots, tomatoes, oh i could go on and on...but no dressing)

well, i guess that's about it for the menu. have a great week!

Simply Monday

...well, today i was taking a quick peek at some of my favorite blogs before i "officially" get my day started and stumbled across something very lovely at Tales From the Bonny Blue House (although Mary Ellen, all your links lead you to the smoothie book...that must be one great book:)...and for the record i looked, our library doesn't have it). anyway, this loveliness was "A Simple Woman's Daybook." i thought that today, since i'm feeling much more cluttered than simple, this might be a good place for me to start. this is my first try at this so say a prayer it goes well...

"A Simple Woman's Daybook" - June 16th:

*outside my window - a multitude of construction workers busy as bees on another new house behind us

*i am thinking - i have to get dressed and get moving

*i am thankful - for my husband. he is marvelous.

*from the kitchen - this morning we just had the typical cereal. i need to get much more creative with the breakfast menu. however, last night i did freeze four bags of yummy pea pods that were brought over by some friends who came over at 9 pm, just to share some tasty beef kabobs with us (more on those later...because they are just so great, everyone should make them!)

*i am wearing - my pajamas still. i have been sick for a few days and this morning was just hideous. we won't go into what the jammies look like because they are rather lackluster. although, i was thinking just this morning that i need a new pair of summer jammies. i have specific winter jammies but summer simply eludes me. if you have any suggestion for some practical summer jammies, leave me a comment.

*i am creating - some small lesson plans for the summer. our oldest needs to do some speed drills on math facts, there are a few science units to cover and i would like to get our middle one started on some beginning phonics.

*i am going - to the library for homeschool art class this afternoon...although the way i feel i may just drop the oldest one off and come back to the house with the younger ones.

*i am reading - "The Drama of Atheist Humanism" by Henri de Lubac. this was a textbook of mine in college...oh, just a few years back. :) it's rather large and equally deep, so this might be on the list for quite some time.

*i am hoping - that this pesky nausea/headache/sore throat/drainage goes away. and we'll stop there before we get too much information.

*i am hearing - my two year old playing with a "my first leap pad."

*around the house - i was planning on this being a chock full day in the kitchen. making strawberry freezer jam, strawberry and blueberry bread or muffins to stock the freezer, meatballs for the freezer from the six pounds of ground beef i purchased. i think i'll just have to deal with the illness and get it done anyway.

*one of my favorite things - our new mattress. waking up without excruciating pain in my back is truly a gift from God.

*a few plans for the rest of the week - to finally get the towels and sheets organized, get the kids clothes organized and get the oil in the car changed. we are heading to an ordination to the priesthood of a dear friend and i want the car to make it there. we definitely could use some prayers on that one!

*here is a picture thought i am sharing -

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Aaaah, Today.

today was the first day this entire week that i was able to get out of the house. for the past three days i have been waiting for the bug man and the builder to show up. don't even get me started on customer service (or lack thereof) and showing up when you say you will. you would think that when somebody (whom you've paid and contracted for their services) gives you a two hour window in which they will show up...that they will actually show up. and if they don't, you'd think they would give you a call...earlier than three hours after the fact. and then they wouldn't have the nerve to reschedule for two days later...giving you a four hour time window this time...and then still not showing up until one and a half hours after that. yep, but i'm not bitter or anything. and you know, an apology would have been oh so helpful. so today, we went to our local library to see the alpacas. their appearance was part of our summer library program. the kids got to pet the alpacas and find out all sorts of things about them.

then we went home and my littlest munchkin decided to have her own little dance party. video(and for the record, that is not me clapping in the background. it's my rhythmically challenged eight year old.)

and then, to everyone's joy (read this correctly as "horror") i served something for dinner which at a quick glance you would have sworn it came out of a can labeled alpo. ah, dog food for dinner. and then it swiftly became "dog food over noodles." it actually was the beef and gravy that i blogged about freezing the other day. it was rather tasty, once you got over the appearance.

then we went outside to check out our newly "acquired" slime mold (check out the last pic on this page of the girl, loveingly petting her slime mold...it's what our's looked like...but not quite how we felt about it) and have ice pops. ah, magnifique!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Where Two Or More Are Gathered...

tonight the weather was horrible. thunder, lightning, torrential rain...and anything else you can think of that fits into this category...we had it. and tonight was also the monthly praise and worship night at our parish. i, and a group of great friends, play for this night where we sing songs of praise while Jesus is exposed in the monstrance on the altar and confessions are available. the night of course wraps up with formal benediction. the night unfortunately only draws a small crowd but it is always a blessing...because He is there. well tonight, it seemed like nobody was coming so when father came we told him that we were probably going to pack up and go home. holding the empty monstrance in his hand he looked at us with a forlorn little smile and said, "but you know, He said, where two or more are gathered...there am I." we couldn't argue with a very holy priest speaking scripture. so, for fear of blowing something out...or up...as the case may be (for fear of lightning), we decided that we would not plug in the sound board for our microphones and whatnot and just make a semi-circle facing the altar and sing our hearts out for Him. we sang for an hour. we sang just for Him. it wasn't so that others could hear...it was only for Him. and it was so good. so good to spend that time, face to face with Him, pouring out my soul through songs of praise and thanksgiving. it was quite the reminder that even if it was just me, He still would have done everything He has done, everything...for just me. gazing into that monstrance i saw Him smiling, thanking us for sharing our gifts tonight, for only Him. not for glory, not for pride, but just because they are the gifts and talents that He gave to us and we were giving them back to Him. i have always said that the little chapel we play in feels like the upper room and tonight, there we were. we were gathered around Him, pouring out ourselves, our day, our life and He was there, on that altar, in our midst. what a blessing! oh thank you Lord for the gift!

Monday, June 09, 2008

Therapy?

i just spent the last 45 minutes of my life in my basement...sucking up tiny jumping bugs with the shop vac. i had to have sucked up literally thousands of them, if not millions. i felt like i was in ghostbusters with my little pack sucking up the things. despite the bajillions i sucked up...they are still there. while i was sucking them up i was dancing around screaming "you can run but you can't jump away from the power of a shop vac! die little bugs! die!" probably more info than you wanted...or needed...but the kids thought it was hilarious. so, did it completely solve the problem? no. did it make me feel ALOT better? yes. the beauty of free therapy.

Hot and Sticky

well, today it's supposed to be in the upper nineties again for the third day in a row with humidity that just sticks to you. i'm glad to see the sun but i didn't think the intense heat would come so soon. it's supposed to cool down into the upper eighties by wednesday though. so, my house, now equipped with central air is supposed to be my pleasure on days like today, right? well, the air is nice, to be sure...but the stinkin' bugs are not. our house has been infested with these tiny little buggies that jump that we're told are very popular in new construction and are just rampant all over our block. they seem to like our house and have taken residence here. they were just in the basement and that wasn't good...but it wasn't horrible. now they are everywhere. the exterminator is coming back for the third time and the builder is coming to hopefully caulk some windows, etc. dear Lord, please end the plague. i'm having nightmares and starting to twitch. :)

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The First of Many...

today the newly ordained fr. mark celebrated his first mass. it was lovely and i was so honored to be the psalmist for the mass. as i cantored i was struck by the beauty of being surrounded up there by what seemed liked a sea of priests, deacons and seminarians. so many of them look so young and so full of life to serve their Church. we are blessed. it gives me hope to see the ordination of these holy men who are on fire with love for the Church and desire so much to follow our bishop and our pope in proclaiming the truth, boldly. the newly ordained did not preach the homily, which i had hoped he would (i don't know, maybe that's tradition to have somebody else do it), but to here him speak the words of consecration and see him elevate the Sacred Host with the greatest joy was something i will carry with me for quite some time. it has been wonderful to see his journey from being one of the lay faithful at the parish to becoming a priest. if you have a minute, say a prayer for fr. mark and his priesthood. may the Lord bless him now to be a priest who lays down his life to preach the truth at all costs and may Our Blessed Mother draw him close.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

The Blessings of the Lord

today we were blessed to attend the ordination to the priesthood of a friend from our parish. he was one of the first people of the parish we met when me moved here about six years ago. he had a house, a degree and a job but he heard the call of the Lord and he followed. how blessed we have been to see this journey come to fruition today in his ordination. the bishop's homily was absolutely beautiful. he is such a wonderful bishop. the mass was glorious and watching all those priests lay their hands on the new priest's head after the bishop ordained him and then seeing them up there concelebrating...it moved me to tears. it dawned on me as i was watching all the different priests that we are really blessed to have such a large number of young priests in our diocese. it was awesome to see so many young men who have answered the call of our Lord to lay down their life and give everything for the service of God's people. they were so joyful in welcoming a new brother. it was so beautiful to see.
after going home we were also blessed to go share some time with friends of ours in their pool. it was so hot here today that the chill of the pool was superb. we got to hang out, chat and swim until it got dark. it was a terrific close to a blessed day.
oh, and while we are on blessings...just one last one. tonight we finally turned on our central air for the first time. ok, to most people this isn't a big deal but after spending about six years in a 100 year old house that was like a disgusting sauna, no matter what you did...this is paradise. when we turned it on i opened a vent in the floor, knelt down over the top of it to feel the cold air and pronounced "this is something to thank the Lord for." i know the kids thought i was crazy but yes, for cold air coming out of my floor, i am overjoyed and completely grateful! :)

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

The Holy Eucharist

this may our oldest daughter received her First Holy Communion. it was a beautiful day. one she had been waiting for...for quite some time. on that day i began to think about my own relationship with Our Lord and whether i was really doing all i could to get all the grace i could from this sacrament. of course, the answer was "no," but as usual, i came to think conclusion at the exact same time i came to the brick wall on how to change this. anyway, i've sat on this for a few weeks but last week my inattention to mass was just appalling to myself. sure, it probably has alot to do with my 4 year old son who screamed at the top of his lungs for the entire 20 minute car ride to mass and even screamed for about the first twenty minutes of mass so that my husband had to keep him outside, but really, that type of thing is no excuse. i might use it frequently to excuse some sort of hideous behavior on my part, but it's not. did Our Lord ever say to us, "you know, when somebody makes you angry, it's really ok to act badly in return and just act plain mean and ticked off the rest of the day"? ummm, nope. not anywhere that i'm aware of. so, in response to my apparent apathy i opened this book,"7 Secrets of the Eucharist" by Vinny Flynn. you might recognize mr. flynn as the man who sometimes sings the Divine Mercy chaplet on ewtn. my husband and i actually went to college with two of his kids. anyway, this book was a very quick and easy read, but, i'll call it nothing short of amazing. mr. flynn has managed to seamlessly weave countless references from st. faustina's diary, the catechism, numerous popes, other saints and many encyclicals throughout the text. my favorite is this piece from the diary of st. faustina...

"my soul is preparing for the coming of the Lord, who can do all things, who can make me perfect and holy...what am i and who are You, O Lord, King of eternal glory? o my heart, are you aware of who is coming to you today?...i hear Him approaching...i go out to meet Him, and i invite Him to the dwelling place of my heart, humbling myself profoundly before His majesty...at the moment when i receive God, all my being is steeped in Him."

do we put this much thought and energy into our every reception of Our Lord? i'll be honest and say that i don't. therefore going on to read about st. thomas aquinas speaking of the "false person" and how in them the sacrament produces no effect. check it out. it's an eye opener.
there are two other points from the book that i would like to address. the first is "the Eucharist is alive." did i already know this on a theological, strictly head based level? yes. had i allowed the full meaning of this statement to sink in and dwell in my heart and soul? no. the author asks if every time we approach to receive communion "does it look like we believe we are about to take into our bodies the living person, Jesus Christ, true God and true man?" well, i won't speak for others but, i know that i frequently don't...and i'm really not noticing much of a difference in me when compared to those around me. the Jesus we receive is not merely the dead corpse hanging on the cross, but we receive the Lord, fully alive and risen triumphantly from the grave in living flesh and spirit. wow...and wow!
and the second point for me has to do with "full and active participation." i frankly get really tired of hearing that phrase thrown around like a free license to do whatever the heck people want in light of "well, vatican II said it." well yes, they did, but anything can be taken out of context, blown out of the water and outright be taken advantage of. look at roe v. wade. anyway, in his book, mr. flynn speaks dynamically about what we should be doing at mass in his chapter, "We don't just receive."
so, i guess i should be done raving about this book so there are some treasures for you to discover for yourself. if you are looking for a book to strengthen your knowledge of and devotion to Our Eucharistic Lord, a book that speaks of reverence, quiet and beauty, pick this one up. you won't be disappointed. the curt jester also has a review of the book over here if you would like even more info on the book.
i frankly am just so happy that i actually finished a book...that isn't a text book. it seems that since i began having children my reading time has collapsed into a pile of rubble. but i am vowing to get back up on the horse and resume all the delicious devouring of texts i used to do (of course, at a bit of a moderated pace). my plan is to tackle two books at a time. i need something light and nourishing like this Eucharistic book to get me through deeper and a bit more laborious reading that i long to do again. so, next i'm going to be picking up a short biography of c.s. lewis to balance out this beauty by de Lubac. wish me well. :)

Nine...Yes, Nine

today my husband and i celebrated our ninth wedding anniversary. we slept in a bit, went out to red lobster for lunch (with all three kids in tow, let me tell you that was interesting), stopped off to get haircuts (which both of us have been pining for), dropped the kids off at a friends house and then went to the movies to see "prince caspian." it was a lovely day spent with my husband. nine years...where has the time gone?

Sunday, June 01, 2008

However Did You Get Here?

well, i could tell you about our parish picnic we had today where this guy contorted himself through a toilet seat and swallowed a balloon (it was actually hilarious...job well done jonathan!) or i could tell you about my daughter's first piano recital. but, since i left my house today at 10:30 am and returned home at 9:00 pm. just living that was quite enough today...so i'm not going to rehash. anywho, one of my favorite blogs to frequent is boomama. i find her humor oh so appealing and a look to her page always guarantees some sort of chortle or guffaw...or maybe both. but anyway, one of the things i love to read on her page is the things people searched for that lead them to her page. so, i figured...hey, i can do that, and maybe my 3.76 readers will also chortle or guffaw...or quite possible just roll their eyes and shrug. mine of course is not that extensive because really, do people search for the bizarre things of which i write? i'm thinking not. but here, for your unbridled enjoyment is "just how did they get here?"

#1. "why are there gloves for st. gianna" - well, because she was human and her hands got cold too. ok, seriously, i'm in love with st. gianna...as i've divulged before. as Catholics we revere these things that belonged to canonized saints because they are a physical reminder of their holiness. as Catholics we are people of "stuff." not just any stuff mind you, but of the stuff that directs our thoughts to what is higher and those things (like our sacraments for instance) that tangibly show us on the outside what is going on in the inside. take for example baptism. on the external we see water and what does water do...it cleanses. this is the external that points to the internal of our souls being cleansed from all sin. a little off the original topic...but intertwined none the less.

#2. "owl vomit" - wow, not so theologically based in the slightest. i guess all i can say is, when you pick apart owl vomit with your kid and make models out of what you find, and then you blog it...well you've just go to expect this.

#3. "we choose homeschool" - cool. so do i. can we meet up some time? it's always nice to have friends.

#4. "miniature lilac trees" - and since my post told you absolutely nothing about where to acquire one or how to properly take care of it, i hope your's is doing as well as mine is. i'm happy to report also that it is still here...it has not been mowed down. ;)

#5. "miniature lilac bush" - wow, now i'm really sorry mine didn't contain any usable information.

#6. "cute homemade stocking" - well, i'm not sure mine fulfills the "cute" parameter, but it surely was homemade. and i'm sure all the poorly sewn seems and random threads showed it.

well, there you have it. that's how some people have found this crazy little piece o' me in the blogosphere. maybe we should say a prayer for them, offer a few masses...a novena. who knows what irreparable damage i may have caused. and whomever the people are who have visited lately from canada, portugal, spain and egypt...i cannot explain to you the giddy, euphoric state this puts me in. i do hope you'll come back. unless you were the ones looking for miniature lilac bushes...and in that case we know those fish won't be biting again.