Thursday, April 30, 2009

Happy Birthday, Willie!

Politics aside, love this video of one of my old favorite singers with one of my new favorites. :o)
(Turn off my playlist music in the left hand column by clicking on the double lines on the player before listening to Willie and Norah).

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A Day In The Life

Yesterday I stopped at the thrift store on the way home from Mom's, still on a basket search. I found one that will do until I find a bigger one. It's to hold Reece and Aubrey's small toys when doing a quick pick-up of their living room. Baby #3 will be here in less than 2 months, and Cyrise has been busy getting the second bedroom organized. I'm so excited to meet our 7th grandchild!

I found a cute red and black skirt at the thrift store to wear to church. I think it will look nice with a black top, black shoes and my black mantilla. And I bought a couple of capri length pants, both good brands hardly worn, and another little dress for Aubrey. My only other purchase was a pair of Killian Red beer glasses. Aubrey's dress was 1/2 price (white tags were 50% off), and I got a 30% discount for "Seniors Day." What a deal! :o)

When I got home there was a message on my answering machine saying my eyeglasses were in, so I went over and got them. Vision-wise they are perfect, but it will take me some time to get used to the progressive lenses. I like how light they are--rimless frames and lightweight non-glare lenses.

Reece was here last night and went with me to Mom's this morning. I dropped him off at his house, went to PT, then back to watch him and Aubrey while their Mom went to her doctor appointment. Aubrey napped most of the time I was there, only waking up when her daddy got home after 4 PM. Reece and I played with Play-Doh and toys and read books while she slept.

I got home just before Ron did. We had KFC for dinner and I watched Criminal Minds while he worked in the garage. He's making himself a workbench, which will make his woodworking projects much easier to accomplish!

Someone is interested in buying Mom's house in Kansas, and has made a couple of offers which we have countered. Please send up a prayer that they accept our last counter-offer. Thanks!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Salida. Door Going Out.

Do you remember that from Sesame Street? :o) We used to watch Sesame Street several times a day when Jason was a little boy, back in the '70s.

Jason, come home. I am missing you.

I'm on my way out for awhile.

Maggie the Ferocious will be guarding the house while I'm gone.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Saving Lives

This video was made by the San Antonio Coalition For Life. The Allied Women's Center in San Antonio is doing wonderful work, giving pregnant women a better "choice" than having an abortion, doing what it takes to help save the lives of babies. Please pray for them and support them financially if you can. Thanks!

102 Marshall Street
San Antonio, Texas 78212
Tel: (210)224-7077

Holy Cannoli! Notre Dame Again.

I haven't blogged much lately about the Notre Dame scandal because it's been all over the web and I figured I didn't need to add my 2 cents. But just a quick update.

Over 40 US Bishops have now publicly expressed their dismay and concern about Notre Dame's invitation to Barack Obama to speak at commencement and receive an honorary degree from the university, despite his anti-life views that directly oppose those of the Catholic Church.

Scores of students and alumni have expressed their disapproval to Father Jenkins, president of Notre Dame, who still will not consider revoking the invitation. There have been protests and prayer vigils on campus.

More than 330,000 people have signed the petition asking Father Jenkins to rescind the invitation.

And now, Mary Ann Glendon, former US Ambassador to the Vatican, who was also scheduled to speak at commencement and receive the Lataere Medal, the university's highest honor, has declined the invitation and the Medal!

You can read her letter to Father Jenkins at First Things or Whispers In The Loggia.
*edit: The First Things website is currently down (10:30 AM), presumably crashed from too much traffic.

I applaud Ms. Glendon for her decision and believe that she has done the right thing.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Cabinet Is Finished

Ron finished the cabinet last night. I love it and think it turned out beautiful! It will hold Reece's homeschool books and supplies. I'm not sure where I want it yet, so I won't put anything in it until I've tried it in a couple of different spots.

The frame is made of pine, the sides, back and shelves are plywood. Everything is stained, then finished with polypropylene and waxed. Ron's a perfectionist about woodworking, and it feels like buttah. The glass was salvaged from our old door sidelights when we got a new door. It's leaded glass with a bit of stained glass (flowers and leaves).

I think it will be a treasured family heirloom. :o)

Our day was full. Mass today was a high Mass, and Father's homily was about vocations, which fit right in with Good Shepherd Sunday. He said that we will have six priests ordained this year in the diocese, not as many as we used to have, but more than we've had lately. What wonderful news!

Kelly was coming over in the afternoon to spend time with me, so we stopped for a quick barbecue lunch. Ron and I got home around 2:15 and Kelly and her dogs showed up around 2:30. We left the dogs with Ron, who was working on the pool this afternoon, and went to some thrift stores, Anna's Linens, Big Lots and the grocery store (Ron called to ask us to bring home sodas, milk and chocolate chip cookies). :o) Kelly found lots of treasures, but I only bought a pack of scrapbook paper at Big Lots. I was looking for a large basket and a hummingbird feeder, but didn't find what I wanted. We had so much fun, though.

Josh came by after we got home, so he got to see Kelly and the dogs. He had Ron's truck. Now they have gone to get gas in the truck and pick up a pizza and Kelly is on her way home.

It's cloudy and windy and looks as though it will pour down rain any minute, but it's been that way all day and hasn't rained a drop. :o( Maybe tonight. Hope you've had a lovely Sunday, too.

*Edited to add a picture of the top of the cabinet to show the backpiece with walnut rectangular insets that match the walnut insets on the front, because I think they are pretty. :o)

Second Sunday After Easter

This Sunday is often called Good Shepherd Sunday: the Gospel tells us of the Good Shepherd. Jesus is indeed the Good Shepherd of our souls. He came to give His life for us.
The Roman Missal, 1962

At that time Jesus said to the Pharisees: I am the good Shepherd. The good Shepherd giveth His life for His sheep. But the hireling, and he that is not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth and scattereth the sheep: and the hireling fleeth, because he is a hireling and he hath no care for the sheep. I am the good Shepherd: and I know Mine, and Mine know Me. As the Father knoweth Me, and I know the Father: and I lay down My life for My sheep. And other sheep I have that are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear My voice, and there shall be one fold and one shepherd. (St. John 10. 11-16)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

St. Mark, The Evangelist

Today is the feast day of St. Mark, the Evangelist.

St. Mark was a disciple of St. Peter and the author of the second Gospel under the inspiration of the latter. he was martyred at Alexandria A.D. 80.
The Roman Missal, 1962

St. Mark's symbol is the winged lion.

Collect for today:
O God, who didst exalt blessed Mark, Thine Evangelist, by the grace of preaching the Gospel, grant we beseech Thee, that we may ever profit by his teaching and be defended by his prayers. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of Thy Holy Ghost, forever and ever. Amen

Friday, April 24, 2009

Another Week Bites The Dust.

I'm on my way in a few minutes to pick Ron up at the airport. Yay!

I've been to Mom's and to physical therapy. PT went great--my shoulder seems to be improving. I have two more weeks of therapy, and hope to be back to normal by then.

Things were not so good at Mom's. She fed Teddy something she shouldn't have, and he had vomited and had diarrhea on the carpet in her bedroom. Then while she was cleaning up the poop, she had a nose bleed. Her carpet is a mess. I ran to the store for carpet cleaner, but it wasn't working very well. I had to leave to get to my appointment, and left Mom working on the spots, poor sweetie.

It's Friday, so Reece will be here tonight. This week has flown by!

Thursday, April 23, 2009


How was your day?

I picked up my new prescription sunglasses on my way to Mom's this morning. (That's them in the pic--you can find everything on the internet). I was supposed to get eyeglasses, too, but they had to send them back to the lab because there was a flaw in one of the lenses. I've worn contact lenses for 40 years, but had to abandon them last year when my eyes got too dry to wear them comfortably. I really miss being able to wear them, but c'est la vie. The sunglasses, though, are amazing! Wearing them reminded me of when I was in eighth grade and got glasses for the first time. My whole world changed; I could see!

This afternoon I stayed with Reece and Aubrey while their parents went to the OB again, this time for an ultrasound and to get the lab results. Everything went well; Cyrise's blood pressure was normal and her labs were normal, as well. Thank you for your prayers! They couldn't get a good look at Baby, but she's moving around and her heartbeat is good.

I didn't sleep well last night, so when I got home I fell asleep on the couch watching the news. Had beans and rice for dinner and talked to Ron for awhile. He will be home from Colorado tomorrow.

Now I'm in my PJs ready to surf the web and catch up with what's going on in the world. Every day there is some new stupidity from Washington DC and I wonder why I look. Ron says it's amateur hour at the White House, and I agree.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Where Did The Day Go?

Love this picture of Aubrey, even though it's blurry. Look at the curve of her cheek and her sweet little mouth. :o)

Reece and I went to Mom's this morning. He enjoyed playing on her patio, with Teddy close by. He is becoming more comfortable with the little ragmop. Mom loved watching them together.

Mom has a little hummingbird feeder that sticks to the window, and the hummers have been visiting every day. We have to fill the feeder every morning. She is so delighted by them. :o)

I dropped Reece at his house, came by my house for a sandwich and then went to physical therapy. I was at PT for 45 minutes, then drove back to pick up Cyrise and the kids to take her to her doctor's office for lab work. I got home around 4 PM. The kids invited me to dinner, so I'll make a pot of rice and head back over there around 5:30 PM. Good thing they are only 10 minutes away.

Believe it or not, I've found time to do a couple of loads of laundry and clean up the kitchen today. I still have a load of towels to do, so I'm off to do that and make the rice.

It's 97° right now! If my pool was clean I'd get in it this evening.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Totally Grandkid Tuesday

I had Reece and Aubrey this afternoon while their mommy went to see her OB again. Josh and Cyrise picked Aubrey up around 6, but Reece is spending the night.

They loved playing outside. It was a beautiful day. Aubrey is really trying to talk now; it's so cute!

Reece and I went to the grocery store for a few things this evening, and got Taco Cabana for dinner. He loves bean and cheese soft tacos. He had one of those, a banana, an apple and some Oreos.

His mommy said he needed a bath tonight, so I put him in the tub before bed. I bathed him, then let him play for as long as he wanted. I loved listening to him as he pretended with his toys. He was totally oblivious to me as I sat on the floor with my camera.

He protested when I told him that it was time for bed, but settled down to listen to his stories and went right to sleep, as usual.

Lately he has especially enjoyed The Tale of Peter Rabbit, and will repeat lines from the book randomly throughout the day. He loves to say, "Don't go into Mr. McGregor's garden. Your father had an accident there. He was put in a pie by Mrs. McGregor." :o) Because he loves the story, his chocolate bunny for his Easter basket was Peter Rabbit, and I found a Peter Rabbit DVD.

Cyrise's blood pressure is still too high, so she will see the doctor again tomorrow and is scheduled for an ultrasound on Thursday. Please send up a prayer for her health, and the baby's. I'm a little worried. Thanks!

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Simple Woman's Daybook

Monday, April 20 2009

Outside my window...
gorgeous, beautiful blue sky, full leafy green trees, 70° climbing to 83° this afternoon.

I am thinking...
about Ron sitting on a plane today with his sore back.

I am thankful...
for my children and grandchildren.

From the kitchen...
I'm planning a menu for the week using what I have in the pantry and freezer.

I am wearing...
jeans, gray tee shirt, black socks.

I am creating...
raisin bran muffins later today. The batter keeps in the fridge until ready to use, or you can bake them and freeze them--the recipe makes 5 dozen.

I am going...
I've already dropped Ron at the airport and stopped by the bank. I'm off to pick up Mom for Adoration, then I have PT at 1:30, so no time for lunch out with her today. Ack, I need to stop for gas, too.

I am hoping...
to get my blood sugar under control. I've been taking my meds exactly as prescribed, and it's still all over the place.

I am hearing...
birds outside my window.

Around the house...
the usual--laundry, decluttering, vacuuming, dusting--it never ends. :o)

One of my favorite things...
the singing of a crazy mockingbird.

A few plans for the rest of the week...
Ron will be gone all week and I won't be doing anything extraordinary. Going to Mom's every day, PT 3X a week, Reece 2 nights a week, a little shopping here, a few errands there.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing.

My tomato plants are blooming!

See more daybooks at Peggy's.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

For The Sake Of His Sorrowful Passion...

...have mercy on us and on the whole world.

We went to Low Mass with Father Schorp today. We stopped and picked up hamburgers for lunch and took them back to Mom's. Ron is going out of town tomorrow, and wanted to get home so that he can finish some yard work and woodworking before he leaves.

Today is Divine Mercy Sunday. The Divine Mercy has long been one of my favorite devotions, and I had a page devoted to it on my old website. It has become popular and well-known now, which is a blessing. I pray that when I am on my death bed, my loved ones will remember to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet for me.

Our Lord said to Saint Faustina:

Encourage souls to say the Chaplet which I have given you ... Whoever will recite it will receive great mercy at the hour of death ... When they say this chaplet in the presence of the dying, I will stand between my Father and the dying person, not as the Just Judge but as the Merciful Savior ... Priests will recommend it to sinners as their last home of salvation. Even if there were a sinner most hardened, if he were to recite this chaplet only once, he would receive grace from my infinite mercy. I desire to grant unimaginable graces to those souls who trust in My mercy ... Through the Chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will.

Today there is a plenary indulgence for praying the Our Father and the Nicene Creed before the Blessed Sacrament or an image of Jesus of the Divine Mercy, so after Mass Father Schorp had us all kneel to pray the prayers before both the Blessed Sacrament in the Tabernacle, and the image which was in front of the church. My intention was for my father, who died of leukemia in 1992.

There was to be a procession, exposition of the Blessed Sacrament, an hour of devotion and another Mass at 3 PM today. We didn't stay for that, but I'm so glad that our church had it available.

Happy Sunday!

Low Sunday/The Octave Day of Easter/Dominica In Albis

This Octave [this past week] is entirely consecrated to the neophytes. The week was for them a continual feast, a spiritual feast; and they kept their white baptismal garments, which were not laid aside until the following Sunday (in albis deponendis). The Masses of this Octave allude, like that of Pentecost, sometimes to the Resurrection, sometimes to Baptism. Let us follow the example of the neophytes, let us all be one in mind and heart, in proclaiming together our faith in the risen Christ Jesus our Lord. (The Roman Missal, 1962)

Each day this week the Gospel readings have told the amazing stories of the appearances of Jesus to his Apostles and others after His resurrection--on the road to Emmaus, in the Cenacle, on the shore of the sea of Tiberias, to Mary Magdalene at the tomb, to Peter and John at the tomb, and to the eleven in Galilee to whom He gives the Mission. And today, once again Jesus appears to the Apostles in the Cenacle, where he dispels the doubts of Thomas and praises those who believe in Him without having seen Him.

This Sunday is called from the first words of the Introit, the Sunday of Quasimodo, or Sunday in Albis (deponendis) because the neophytes on that day put aside their white garments. In English the term Low Sunday is in contrast with Easter or High Sunday. Another Latin name Pascha clausum is preserved in the French: Paques closes and in the Dutch or Flemish: Beloken Pasen: close of Easter, this Sunday ending the Octave. Let us proclaim our faith in the risen Lord, and in His divine presence in the Holy Eucharist. (The Roman Missal, 1962)

Grant, we beseech Thee, almighty God, that we who have celebrated the Paschal Feast, may, by Thy bounty, retain its fruits in our daily habits and behaviour. Through our Lord Jesus Christ who lives and reigns with Thee and Thy Holy Ghost, one God now and forever. Amen

Saturday, April 18, 2009

A Simple Saturday

Saturday has been a nice day so far. We got more rain last night. The thunder seemed to make Reece restless. He kept moving around and waking me up during the night. But he woke up this morning very happy and chipper.

He went with me to see his Gran and Teddy and had fun over there. He and Teddy still are not best friends, but Reece is beginning to like him better. :o)

This pic of Mom and Teddy was taken yesterday. I left my camera at her place, so it was still there today for more pictures.

Gran got out her little Indian nativity set for Reece to play with. He loved it! He said the wolf was a dog and the fox was a cat, and made the appropriate sound effects. I love the way he interacts with his Great Gran. They are so sweet together.

And of course Teddy was close at hand while we were there. I love his little pink tongue.

Twice this week he has managed to get out when Mom opened the door and run away from her. The first time there was a soldier in the hallway, and he picked Teddy up for Mom. Yesterday she said he ran all the way to the dumpster, around the dumpster, and off the grounds of the apartment complex. He finally stopped and she was able to get him. I told her that she can't open the door without having him contained, and suggested that she put him on the patio and close the door if she leaves to go to the mailbox or the dumpster. She said she will, but she doesn't remember. I'm so afraid she is going to lose him.

I dropped Reece off at his house, but he will be back this evening with Aubrey. The kids are having friends over, so we will keep them for a few hours.

Now I have a kitchen to clean, carpets to vacuum and toys to put away. Have a great weekend!

Friday, April 17, 2009

It's Raining!

I just heard thunder rolling across the sky; what a beautiful sound! We're supposed to get thunderstorms today and tomorrow. I wish it would rain all week. We really need it.

Cyrise had to go back to the doctor yesterday. He didn't see her on Tuesday because he was called to the hospital to deliver babies. He did see her yesterday, and her blood pressure is high. Please pray. She is at 30 weeks--too soon to deliver the baby. I stayed with the kids while she went to the doctor. Aubrey is all over the place, using her funny little crawl. Reece and I watched Little Bear and played with his cars and Fisher Price barn.

I'm off to Mom's in a bit. She will be happy to see that I went grocery shopping for her last night. She doesn't like to go, but I usually take her anyway just to get her out into the normal world. :o) But she was low on things, and I had to get cat food, so I went ahead and got the things on her list while I was at the store.

This is day 3 of physical therapy. I have that this afternoon. The week went so quickly. It doesn't seem like it should be Friday already.

Reece will spend the night tonight. He stays on Tuesdays and Fridays. Not sure what we'll be doing this weekend. It's Fiesta time in San Antonio, so there are all kinds of activities going on.

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Traditional Catholic Latin Mass Explained

You can hear our wonderful priest, Reverend Father Donald Kloster, explaining the TLM using the links at this site. There are several You Tube videos with Father explaining the Mass, and some of his sermons. What a wonderful way to use the internet!

If you live in the San Antonio area, we now have two parishes where the TLM is celebrated, and you are very welcome to visit. You can find directions and times posted on the site.

The Traditional Catholic Latin Mass

We Partied Like It's 1773

Ron and I went to the Tea Party at the Alamo yesterday, along with about 16,000 other South Texans.

Glenn Beck did his show from there, then returned later to give the opening remarks. Ted Nugent was umm...Ted Nugent. He doesn't hold back. :o) Most of the speakers were everyday folks, and they all did a good job explaining why they are involved in this grassroots resistance movement.

From what I have read on the internet, hundreds of thousands of people attended the tea parties held across the country yesterday. I've heard that they are just malcontents, mad because Obama won the election. I've heard that the movement isn't a grassroots movement at all, but organized and funded by the rich and powerful who want to use the people for their own purposes. I've heard that the tea parties don't mean anything, won't accomplish anything, are a waste of time. I don't believe any of that.

What I know is that the people I saw yesterday were ordinary people--older couples, young people, families with little kids, teens, white, black, hispanic, asian--a real cross section of America. Not the kinds of people who usually show up for protests or rallies. But they came because they know that something is wrong in our country. They came to raise their voices, hoping to sound an alarm before America goes completely off the tracks.

They came to let Mr. Obama and Congress know that they won't sit silently by and let their rights be compromised or taken away. They won't sit silently by while taxes are raised and trillions of dollars of their tax money is used for purposes they oppose. They won't sit silently by while the Constitution may be in jeopardy from the very people who are supposed to uphold it.

I was proud to be among those people. I hope they continue to raise their voices and resist any "change" that is not beneficial to America.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


It's a busy week.

Monday after Adoration I had my first physical therapy appointment for my frozen shoulder. I was a little apprehensive since moving my arm certain ways causes intense pain, but the session went very well with not much pain. In fact, most of it made my shoulder feel better; especially the last 10 minutes when the therapist put some kind of electrical current thing on my shoulder, then put a heat pad over it. It felt wonderful!

I'll be going 3 times a week for the next month. The therapist believes that a month of PT will have me back to normal. From his mouth to God's ear. † He gave me some exercises to do at home to improve my range of motion.

Today I went to Mom's, stopped to get some lunch, then went to watch the grandbabies at their house while their mommy had a doctor appointment. They were so sweet. Aubrey smiles and smiles, watching every move Reece and I make. She fell asleep in my arms just before her daddy got home from work. Reece was an angel, too. I brought him home with me to spend the night. He loves being outside. We played in the yard while Papa grilled bulgogi for dinner. We had it with rice and broccoli Normandy (broccoli, carrots and cauliflower), and Reece ate everything. He was ready to eat. He has always loved vegetables.

Tomorrow I'll take him with me to see his Great Gran. She has a dentist appointment at 12:30, so we'll drop him off at home on the way to that. I have PT again at 2 PM until about 3. Then I'll be at the Tea Party at Alamo Plaza at 4 PM. So another jam packed day.

I'd better get some sleep.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Babies

I did not get very good Easter pictures of my very active grandbabies. Most of them were blurred.

Here's Reece with a happy smile.

And Aubrey in her Easter dress.

Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia!

I hope that you've had a wonderful Easter Sunday. Our day was full and happy.

My sister and her son were visiting this weekend, and it's been a joy to be able to spend time with them. My sister stayed here Friday and Saturday night, while her son stayed with Mom. It was nice to have some "sister time" to sit and chat. We were especially happy to have them with us at Mass.

When we got home from Mass, we found out that Captain Phillips had been rescued from the Somalian pirates--thank God! His family must be overwhelmed with joy and relief.

Our family gathered at our house in the afternoon--my sister, nephew, mom, our daughter and her husband, and our youngest son and his family, and the three dogs, Darcy, Banzai and Teddy. And me and Ron.

Josh and Cyrise bought the ham for Easter dinner this year, and Cyrise made green beans with bacon and mashed potatoes. Kelly brought a hummingbird cake for dessert, and I made grape salad and baked some dinner rolls. Everything was delicious and there were lots of leftovers. I'll use some of the ham later this week to make ham and beans. The kids took leftovers home for another meal, too, except for my sister and nephew. I meant to send ham home with them, but they got away too quickly this evening. :o)

Reece had an Easter egg hunt inside, since we were afraid the dogs would get the eggs if we did it in the back. He had fun finding his eggs and putting them in his basket. :o)

It's been a beautiful day to start the Easter season, which will last for the next 50 days, until Pentacost. So keep celebrating!

Psalm 150
Praise ye the Lord in His holy places:

praise ye Him in the firmament of His power.

Praise ye Him for His mighty acts:

praise ye Him according to the multitude of His greatness.

Praise Him with sound of trumpets:

praise Him with psaltery and harp.

Praise Him with timbrel and choir:

praise Him with strings and organs.

Praise Him on high sounding cymbals:

praise Him on cymbals of joy.

Let every spirit praise the Lord.


He Is Risen!

The Easter Cycle

II. Eastertide

Eastertide begins with the Mass of the Easter Vigil and ends on the Saturday after Pentecost. It is a time of uninterrupted joy and Feasts, during which we celebrate the Mysteries of the Resurrection, the Ascension, and the Descent of the Holy Ghost on the Apostles and on His Church. The date of Easter, from which the date of all movable feasts is determined, is fixed according to the Jewish method and may vary between March 22 and April 25.

In the Liturgy of Eastertide, we commemorate the various appearances of Our Lord, during which He instructed His Apostles and prepared them for the Descent of the Holy Ghost and His own Ascension.

The triumph and joy of Eastertide is reflected in the decoration of the sanctuary and the priest's use of white vestments, symbolizing joy and purity. The "Asperges me" is supplanted by the "Vidi aquam," which refers to the waters of Baptism. Every year at Easter the Church rejoices for a double reason: Christ is risen, and many of her children are redeemed.

Until Ascension Day, the paschal candle shines in the sanctuary as a symbol of the visible presence of Our Lord upon earth, and white vestments are used. The joyful repetition of "Alleluia, alleluia, alleluia," which was omitted since Septuagesima, follows every Introit, Antiphon, Verse, and Response as a sign of joy and peace.
The Roman Missal, 1962

Happy Easter, dear readers!

This is the day which the Lord hath made: let us rejoice and be glad in it. Give praise unto the Lord, for He is good: for His mercy endureth forever. Alleluia, alleluia (1 Cor. 5.7)
Christ our Pasch is sacrificed.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Holy Saturday

Holy Saturday is liturgically a day of deepest mourning, a day which the Church spends at our Lord's sepulchre, meditating on His Sacred Passion and Death. There is no Mass; the sacred altar is bare.

The Solemn Easter Vigil service, for which Pope Pius XII gave permission in 1951 and made obligatory in 1956, is intended to show liturgically how life and grace flow to us from the death of our Lord; the Light of the World is exhibited under the symbol of the Paschal Candle, dispelling the night of sin by the light of grace; the Exultet--the Easter Proclamation--is the song that heralds Easter, singing of the brightness of the holy night of Resurrection; the Lessons taken from the ancient prophecies tell of God's wonderful dealings with His people under the Old Covenant, faint types of the glorious happenings that were to come to pass under the New; the waters for Baptism are blessed--those waters in which those who have been buried along with Christ, die to sin and with Him rise to walk in newness of life; this grace He has won for us, and in Baptism bestowed on us; by renewal of our baptismal promises we publicly announce our purpose to show forth this newness in our daily lives; and finally the Church Triumphant is called on to intercede for us, and the Mass of the Resurrection begins.

The hour for beginning this solemn service should be selected so that the Mass of the Resurrection may begin about midnight; but the Bishop of the Diocese may judge it better for special reasons to begin earlier; nevertheless, this earlier start should preferably be later than twilight, and on no account before sunset.
The Roman Missal, 1962

Congratulations to our new Catholics who will be received into the Church at the Easter Vigil all over the world! Welcome Home!

Collect for the first solemn Mass of Easter Sunday:
O God, who dost illuminate this most holy night by the glory of the lord's Resurrection, preserve in the new children of Thy family the spirit of adoption which Thou hast given; that renewed in body and mind, they may render to Thee a pure service. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and Thy Holy Ghost, One God now and forever.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday

Extract from General Decree restoring the liturgy of Holy Week:

"Let the faithful be led to understand properly today's special liturgical act, in which the Passion of our Lord is solemnly chanted: prayers offered for the needs of the whole Church and the human race: the Holy Cross, monument of our Redemption, is adored most devoutly by clergy and faithful, the whole family of Christ: finally, as for hundreds of years was the practice, all who wish and are duly prepared go forward to receive Communion with this as their chief intention, that by devoutly receiving the Body of the Lord (which He delivered this day for all men) they may enjoy richer fruits of that Redemption. Let the priests urge the faithful to make this sacred day one of loving recollection, neither should they forget the law of abstinence and fasting."

The instruction given by pope Pius XII stipulates that Good Friday's solemn liturgy take place after noon; the best time would be three o'clock. The same Pope revives the old practice of all receiving Communion this day as a necessary part of the liturgical function. This consists of four main divisions, each of which has its own historical interest, the whole forming a dramatic representation of the Sacred Passion.

I, II. The first two parts consist of readings from Scripture and a prayer, followed by St. John's story of the Passion, and concluded by a long series of prayers for various intentions. In this part we have preserved the form of the earliest Christian prayer-meeting--a service which was derived from the Jewish Synagogue. To this service of Scriptural readings the celebration of the Eucharist was afterwards joined to form the one solemn act of worship now called the "Mass." The Mass still preserves these distinct divisions; the first from the beginning to the Offertory, in which the Introit and Gloria are included; the second from the Offertory to the Communion. The first division is called the Mass of the Catechumens, (for the Catechumens were not permitted to remain for the celebration of the Eucharist); the second, the Mass of the Faithful.

III. The third part consists of the unveiling and adoration of the Cross. This ceremony was originally connected with the relic of the true Cross, and had its origin in Jerusalem. A veiled Crucifix is gradually exposed to view, and three times at the words Venite adoremus the faithful kneel in adoration of the Cross.

IV. The fourth part, the Communion of Priest and people, completes what used to be known as the Mass of the Presanctified. Today's liturgy clearly does not constitute a Mass, for there is no Consecration; all who communicate receive sacred particles consecrated at the Mass of the previous day. This form of "Mass" is familiar in the Greek rite.

The service opens with a Mass of the Catechumens in what is perhaps its oldest and simplest form. It has neither Introit, Gloria, nor Credo, but consists merely of two lessons, followed each by a Tract, also taken from the Prophets. The Gospel is the story of the Passion according to St. John. This is followed by the most ancient form of intercession. The Priest (formerly the Deacon) makes a solemn appeal to the faithful, telling for whom each Prayer is to be offered: for the Church, the Pope, the Bishops, Priests, etc., the Jews, pagans, heretics, prisoners, etc. The Flectamus genua is said and all kneel down to pray until the Subdeacon bids them rise. Then the Celebrant turns to God, Almighty and Eternal, and formulates the prayer in the name of all. This was the oldest form of the Collect or public prayer.

The Adoration of the Cross, which follows the Collect, is a rite by itself. The veneration of the Cross is very old and found expression most naturally on Good Friday. The ceremony observed in the fourth century, in the Church of Golgotha, differs little from that carried out at the present day, in the Church of the Holy Cross in Jerusalem (where the most precious relics of the Passion are preserved) and in all our Catholic churches. The antiphons and responsories which are sung during the adoration of the Cross, are called Improperia or Reproaches. They form one of the most tragic features of this Friday service, which is a real drama and suggested the mediaeval Passions-plays.

The Adoration of the Cross is followed by a short service. The ciborium containing the sacred Hosts consecrated yesterday is brought in silence with the simplest of ceremonial from the Altar of Repose. Preparation for Communion is fittingly made by all standing to recite the Pater Noster in unison, and the Communion itself is followed at once by three prayers of thanksgiving. These end the day's solemn function.

TheRoman Missal, 1962

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday

From the General Decree of 1955 restoring the liturgy of Holy Week (Maxima Redemptionis):

"Let the faithful be taught about the love with which Christ our Lord 'on the day before He suffered' instituted the sacred and holy Eucharist, Sacrifice and Sacrament, the perpetual memorial of His Passion, to be offered day by day through the ministry of His priests. Let the faithful be invited to render due adoration after the end of Mass to the most holy Sacrament. Finally, wherever to illustrate the Lord's commandment of brotherly love the Washing of the Feet is carried out according to the restored rubrics, let the faithful be taught the deep significance of this holy rite, and let them spend this day in works of Christian charity."

The Mass today, which by order of Pope Pius XII should not begin before 5 p.m. or after 8 p.m., specially commemorates the Institution of the Blessed Eucharist at the Last Supper, and the Ordination of the Apostles, and is, therefore, a Mass of joy and thanksgiving. Hence the Church lays aside for the moment the penitential purple, and assumes festive white vestments; the Altar is decorated; the Gloria is said. During the Gloria the bells are rung, and from that time until the Easter Vigil they remain silent.

At pontifical Mass the oils are blessed for Baptism, Confirmation, Holy Orders, Extreme Unction, and the consecration of altars and churches.

On this day an extra Ciborium is consecrated for the "Mass" of the Presanctified (hence the name) on Good Friday. After the Mass this Ciborium is borne in solemn Procession, during which the Pange Lingua is sung, to the Altar of Repose.

The derivation of the word Maundy reminds us of the ceremony of washing the feet, called Mandatum, from the first words of the Antiphon: Mandatum novum do vobis (John 13. 34). The Mandatum takes place on this day because our Lord washed the feet of His Apostles before the Institution of the Holy Eucharist from which this feast (in Latin Feria Quinta in Coena Domini) derives its most characteristic features.

The Epistle, Gospel, Secret, Communicantes (special form), the Postcommunion, the Procession of the Blessed Sacrament after Mass, and the placing of the Ciborium of Hosts consecrated during the Mass in a tabernacle at the "Altar of Repose" where It is to remain until the following day, are all intended to commemorate the institution of the Divine Sacrament.

This day was the only Feast of the Blessed Sacrament up to the time when a special and very solemn Feast was instituted on the Thursday after Trinity Sunday. Private Masses are forbidden on this day. There is a general Communion at the Solemn Mass in which the Priests take part, to commemorate the custom of ancient times, when in cathedral churches the holy Sacrifice was offered by the Bishop, surrounded by his Priests. Another ancient rite of this day is the Blessing of the Holy Oils and the reconciliation of public penitents. The only trace of the reconciliation of the penitents in our present Roman Missal is the Collect of the mass "Deus a quo" which is very ancient.

In the early Middle Ages, when these ceremonies were observed, three Masses were celebrated on this day: 1. in memory of the Institution of the Holy Eucharist, 2. for the Blessing of the Holy Oils, 3. for the reconciliation of public penitents. The second of these Masses is celebrated by the Bishop before noon in his Cathedral Church surrounded by his clergy.

After the evening Mass the Altar is stripped in order to show that the holy Sacrifice is interrupted and will not be offered again until Holy Saturday is ending.

The Roman Missal, 1962

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Two Of My Favorite Guys

Pope Benedict declared last month that from June 2009 until June 2010 will be the Year of the Priest, and that my dear patron saint for 2009, St. Jean Vianney, will be not only the patron saint of parish priests, but now the patron saint of all priests. How cool is that!

I've had a quiet afternoon at home, paying more bills, making appointments, and reading.

Reece was here last night, making me laugh every few minutes. He loves his play-doh, and pointed out the printing on the box the little tubs came in. He said, "P is for Play-doh!" :o)

He has been totally fascinated by Humpty Dumpty the past few days, and sounds so cute repeating the nursery rhyme. Everything reminds him of Humpty Dumpty--walls, eggs, broken pieces of anything. He likes to look at the picture in the vintage Mother Goose book; Humpty looks terrified as he is about to fall off the wall.

I got Reece some nesting blocks at Tuesday Morning. They have numbers on one side, letters on another, a nursery rhyme on one, and a picture of the nursery rhyme on the opposite side. One of the blocks has--you guessed it--Humpty Dumpty! The exact picture from the vintage Mother Goose. He carried it around everywhere with him last night.

He loves to sing, and lately wants me to sing Little Red Caboose whenever we are driving. "Wittle Wed 'boose, G'ma!" We went for another walk around the block, me trailing after him as he pointed to this and that, wanting to know "What's dat?" I'm crazy about him. (Could you tell)? :o)

We are having the kind of weather where the heat is on at night, and the AC during the day. Oak pollen is heavy in the air, and everywhere you go people are coughing and sneezing. Including me. :o\

Midway Through Holy Week

The year that Mel Gibson's The Passion Of The Christ came out, we went to the theater to watch it during Holy Week, and sometimes it was almost too much to bear.

But Holy Week was changed for me forever after my son and I went to Israel, and walked where Jesus walked during that last week of His life. We went to the Upper Room, walked down to the Garden where Jesus prayed to His Father and was betrayed by one of His own. We went to where Jesus was brought before Caiaphas and where Peter denied Him three times, we followed the Via Dolorosa, stopping at each of the Stations to hear our priest read from Scripture what happened there and to pray. We stood near the spot where Pontius Pilate handed Jesus over to the Jews to be crucified.

We knelt to pray inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, at the place where Jesus' cross stood, at the stone where His Body was placed when He was taken down from the cross, and at His tomb. Jason and I were drawn back there again and again. We went with our tour group the first time, then went back when our guide gave us some free time after lunch. The day before we were to come home we had a whole day free, and we went again, just the two of us, and then one more time later that day with a couple from our group.

We were blessed to see and experience many, many more of the important places in the history of Christ, and I treasure every one of them, but tracing the week of His Passion made the most impression on my heart. It made it so very real.

Tuesday's Gospel reading is the whole Passion of Christ according to St. Mark 14. 32-72; 15. 1-46, and today's Gospel (Wednesday) is the Passion according to St. Luke 22. 39-71; 23. 1-53. Read it and weep.

The painting is The Taking of Christ by Caravaggio, 1602.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Tuesday's Gone

A little Lynyrd Synyrd for my boys, Jason and Joshua. :o)

I feel like I've frittered the day away, accomplishing little. After I left Mom's, I stopped to pick up some of her meds at the drug store, then went to Dollar Tree (homeschool supplies) and Tuesday Morning (a candle for me and Mother Goose blocks for Reece). I came home and had a bite of lunch, typed a letter to Mom's insurance company, then went to the post office to mail the letter and some real estate paperwork.

The guy at the post office told me postal rates are going up again at the end of the month. }:o(

My mom's house in Kansas is on the market now. Please pray that it sells soon for a good price. Thank you!

I'll pick up Reece in a little while, after he has dinner. He spends the night on Tuesdays and Fridays, usually. Ron is going in early and working late every night this week, while they are busy with an exercise.

Monday, April 6, 2009

A Simple Woman's Daybook

Monday, April 6, 2009

Outside my window...
overcast skies, but the day is bright, cold (63°) and a bit windy.

I am thinking...
of all the "business" type items I need to take care of--finish paying bills, a letter to Mom's insurance company, a trip to the post office, a call to make a vet appointment for Teddy.

I am thankful...
for a quick mind and a (mostly) able body.

From the kitchen...
strawberries that need to be eaten today. I think I'll make shortcakes for dessert tonight.

I am wearing...
jeans, short sleeved black smock top, black socks.

I am creating...
palm crosses. :o)

I am going...
I've already been. To Adoration with Mom, lunch at EZs (we had little pizzas and salad), back to her place where I taught her how to make palm crosses, and a stop at Walgreens to leave her prescriptons.

I am hoping...
that Mom's insurance company will pay for the prescription they refused to cover when they get my letter.

I am hearing...
the sound of traffic on the freeway. We're only a few blocks from a major highway. We don't notice the sound much unless the wind is from the north, as it is today.

Around the house...
some laundry to fold and put away, Maggie asleep on a suitcase Ron never put away, a yellow/pink peace rose in a vase on my desk that Ron brought me yesterday from the back yard.

One of my favorite things...
the Rosary.

A few plans for the rest of the week...
clean the house and patio thoroughly as we'll have company for Easter, get candy and goodies to fill the eggs I got for the Grands, make Easter cookies, buy the ham and other food for our Easter feast, Mass on Spy Wednesday, Mass on Good Friday, and Mass on Easter Sunday (all Latin). :o) Oh, and the Tenebrae service at our old church Thursday night, if they are still having it.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing.

My palm crosses in a bowl in the sunlight on the chest in my family room. :o)

Visit Peggy at The Simple Woman's Daybook to read other daybooks.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sherry Nutmeg Pound Cake

1 pkg. yellow cake mix
1 pkg. vanilla instant pudding
1/4 C oil
2 t nutmeg
3/4 C cream sherry or dry sherry wine
4 large eggs

Preheat oven to 350° and grease and flour bundt or angel food cake pan. Blend all ingredients except eggs in mixing bowl. Add the 4 eggs separately, beating 1 minute after each addition at medium speed. Pour batter into pan and bake for approx. 1 hour. Dust with powdered sugar or glaze lightly, if desired.

(Adapted from a recipe from )

The cake we bought at the church bake sale had powdered sugar on top, like the one in the picture. It was moist and very tasty.

A Perfect Palm Sunday

Mass was so beautiful today. It was a low Mass with Father Schorp, who did everything "by the book." :o) We even had a procession outside with our palm leaves. I love, love, love being Catholic, especially during Holy Week. Everything we do at Mass during this week brings us deeply into the Passion with Jesus, and makes us love Him more for what he endured for us. I feel blessed.

After Mass we went back to Mom's for lunch. She had some heat and eat chicken chili in her freezer that we put into her fridge yesterday to thaw. This morning I put it in her crockpot, and by the time we got back to her place after Mass, it was ready to eat.

The ladies of the parish were having a bake sale, and we bought a pound cake for dessert that was out of this world. I looked on-line for a recipe when I got home, and found one that seems like what we bought, judging from the ingredient list. I'll put the recipe in another post.

I stayed at Mom's while Ron came home to change clothes and get his ladder, drill and drill bits. When he got back, he installed four hooks for Mom's neighbor so that she can hang her ferns on her patio. She had hooks, but they had been put into the drywall ceiling, and she wanted them in the wood. It only took him a few minutes, and she was so happy. :o)

Mom took Teddy for a walk while I unloaded and reloaded her dishwasher, cleaned her countertop and made her coffee for tomorrow. We played with Teddy when she got back, and tried to brush him, but he wouldn't sit still for long. He's still very puppy-like, and loves to play and romp around. He makes her so happy. Mom likes to leave her back door to the patio open now, so that he can go in and out as he likes. We don't have to worry about him escaping through the bars now that we have the wire fencing up. He is safe, and loves to be out there.

It was after 4 PM when we got home, but it was a nice afternoon.

Now Ron is replacing the headlight bulb on my car. I noticed the low beam wasn't working a few nights ago. He went to get a new one and it was the wrong one, so now he has to go back to Auto Zone. Uh oh. He's :o(

Second Sunday of Passiontide or Palm Sunday

Extract from General Decree restoring the liturgy of Holy Week:

"Let the faithful be invited to take part in the Procession of palms in greater numbers, thus rendering Christ the King public witness of their love and gratitude."

The Second Sunday in Passiontide would be in any case a great and holy day as it commemorates the last triumph of Our Lord Jesus Christ on earth and opens Holy Week. On this day, the Church celebrates the triumphant entry of Our Lord into Jerusalem; when the multitude, going before and following after Him, cut off branches from the trees and strewed them in His way, shouting: "Hosanna (glory and praise) to the Son of David. Blessed is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord." It is in commemoration of this triumph that palms are blessed and borne in solemn procession.

In fact, this Palm Sunday triumph of Our Lord only led to His death. But we know that this death was not a failure. It was through His Passion and Death that He conquered the world and entered into His Kingdom. "I, if I be lifted up...will draw all things to myself" (John 12, 32). So the Church asks the faithful to join in the triumphal Procession today as an act of homage and gratitude to Christ our King. This triumphal beginning to Holy Week is full of meaning. Although the purple Mass vestments and the Gospel of the Passion remind us that the Cross lies ahead, we already know that this is the means of victory. So the Church asks us to begin Holy Week by joyfully and publicly acknowledging Christ the King.

The principal ceremonies of the day are the Blessing of the Palms, the Procession, and the Mass with the reading of the Passion. The Blessing of the Palms used to follow a ritual similar to that of the Mass--having an Epistle, a Gospel, a Preface, and a Sanctus. The Epistle referred to the murmuring of the Israelites in the desert, and their sighing for the flesh-pots of Egypt. The Gospel was the same as now, describing the triumphant entry into Jerusalem. The prayers which followed the Sanctus asked God to "bless the branches of that whoever receives them may find protection of soul and body...that into whatever place they shall be brought, those there may obtain His blessing; that the devout faithful may understand the mystical meaning of the ceremony, that is, that the palms represent triumph over the prince of death...and therefore the use of them declares both the greatness of the victory and the richess of God's mercy."

Here we clearly have the remains of the early usage of having two Masses on this day: one for the Blessing of Palms, the other after the Procession. The prayers of the Blessing, the Antiphons sung during the Procession, and the Hymn Gloria laus, make this one of the most impressive ceremonies of the liturgical year. (The Roman Missal, 1962)

Holy Week

Extract from the General Decree of November 16, 1955, which restored the Liturgy of Holy Week:

Of the weeks in the Church's year, Holy Week is truly singular for the fullness, majesty, and devotion of the ceremonies. From apostolic times special care had been taken to celebrate the central mysteries of our Redemption, and in the course of time three days--Friday, Saturday and Sunday--came to be set apart for the liturgical memory of Christ crucified, Christ buried, Christ risen. A little later was added a fourth day of solemn ritual remembrance of the institution of the most Holy Eucharist. A further addition was made on the previous Sunday, to celebrate the triumphant entry into His holy city of Christ our lord, Messias and King.

Originally these rites were performed at the hour of day at which had occurred the scenes liturgically represented. Thus Mass on the Thursday was celebrated as the Last Supper had been, in the evening; the liturgical action on the Friday took place, as had taken place the climax of our Lord's Passion, in the afternoon; and late on the Saturday evening began the solemn vigil that ended early the first day of the week with the Resurrection.

In the middle ages various causes conspired to bring them forward earlier and earlier into the day, so that eventually they became morning functions, impairing the earlier harmony with the accounts given in the Gospel narratives. This disharmony was most glaring on the Saturday, which became liturgically the day of Resurrection instead of that days' eve, and liturgically again, from a day of darkest mourning became a day of light and gladness.

In the days of faith these three days, the Sacred Triduum, were days of obligation, and the faithful, freed from servile work, were able to take their part in the morning celebrations in great numbers. By the seventeenth century social and religious conditions had altered so greatly that in 1642 the Sacred Triduum was removed from the days of obligation and the three days became officially what they had long been in practice: ordinary workdays. The beautiful solemn liturgy of Holy Week had by this time become unknown to and unappreciated by all save the clergy and a handful of the faithful. A partial remedy was sought by introducing extra-liturgical devotions each evening (Holy hour, Three Hours, Mater Dolorosa sermon, Stations of the Cross); but these lack much of the great dignity and sacramental power and efficacy of liturgical celebrations.

To bring an end to this serious loss liturgists, parish clergy, and Bishops in every part of the world have for long begged the Holy See to restore the liturgical actions of the Sacred Triduum to their proper hours in the evening. This was a serious undertaking, calling for much thought and consultation. In 1951 the Easter Vigil liturgy was restored to late evening by way of experiment, and in 1953 the Apostolic Constitution "Christus Dominus" permitted Mass to be said and Communion to be received in the evening on certain days in the year. From every country the Holy See received reports of greatly increased attendance and fervour. A Commission was appointed to investigate further and propose definite action, and the Sacred Congregation of Rites concurred with the action proposed. The Restored Ordo for Holy Week was published in November 1955. The following prescriptions are noteworthy:

1. The Restored Ordo for Holy Week affects all the faithful of the Roman Rite, but not those who follow other Latin Rites.

2. It takes effect from March 25, 1956.

3. Sunday in Holy Week is officially named: "Second Sunday in Passiontide, or Palm Sunday."

4. Matins and Lauds for Thursday, Friday, Saturday, if sung in common, are to be said in the morning, not the previous evening. (An exception is made for a church where on Thursday the Mass of the Chrism is celebrated).

5. On Thursday and Friday Vespers are omitted, since the liturgical functions of the two days replace them. Compline is chanted in choir after the function.

6. On Holy Saturday the Vigil celebration replaces both Vespers and Compline.

7. The Mass of the Last Supper should not begin earlier than 5 p.m. or later than 8 p.m.

8. Friday's liturgical action should be after noon, preferably about 3 p.m., but the Diocesan Bishop may permit it to begin later, but not later than 6 p.m.

9. The Paschal Vigil should ideally be celebrated after sunset on Saturday evening.

Not only have the times been radically altered, but the ceremonies themselves have been modified. This is mainly by way of shortening and simplification: and the intention is to make the main ideas of each function stand out more clearly. For the most part, these changes are not innovations. They are mainly a return to an older form, more in line with what was known in the days of St. Wilfrid and St. Bede.

The desire of the Holy See in all this is that the Holy Week Liturgy should be celebrated everywhere with the greatest solemnity possible, and that the people should in some way take an active share.
(From the Roman Missal, 1962)

Saturday, April 4, 2009

"The Stem Cell Debate Is Dead"

I stopped watching Oprah years ago when she started promoting new age guru Gary Zukav, whom I saw (still do) as a fraud and full of cr.. (oops, there's that word again). I'm sorry that she got sidetracked somewhere along the way, and pray that God will straighten her out, because I believe she is doing much damage to the spiritual lives of millions of (mostly) women.

A friend sent me this video link in an email. Dr. Oz is explaining to Oprah and Michael J. Fox that he believes "...the stem cell debate is dead." He says that much progress has been made using other forms of research, and that he believes that there will be a breakthrough in less than 10 years using a person's own skin cells to cure Parkinson's Disease. Watch the video.

Blue Eyed Bebe

She is so sweet!

Fun Friday

Friday was a gorgeous day, and a very pleasant one. After I left Mom's around noon, I met my friend Debbie for lunch at the English tearoom in Bracken Village. It used to be called Bawdsey Manor, and was run by two English sisters who married American military men. But it closed last year, and is now under new ownership. It's now British Sensations.

The Village is a charming little place. The man who owns it buys old houses and other buildings and brings them to the site, fixes them up and rents them out to businesses. I hope it makes it. There have been lots of businesses come and go since it opened, and things seem pretty slow there right now. The shops are the kinds of places ladies like--shops with handmade jewelry, antiques, knickknacks and pretty things for home and garden.

It's always fun to see Deb and catch up with what is going on in her life. We met a few years ago at the Divine Mercy hour at the church we both attended. Since then we've both moved to different churches, but still manage to get together now and then to eat and chat. She's a love.

Josh and Cyrise's anniversary was Wednesday, but they are celebrating it this weekend. They went out to dinner Friday night, and brought the kids to us to spend the night. Reece wanted to play outside, so we went out for awhile before it got dark. I took Aubrey's exersaucer out, and she loved looking around and feeling the wind. I blew bubbles for Reece to catch, and she liked those, too. :o) We came in and had catfish for dinner, then we played on the floor with blocks and watched Blue's Clues. It's fun to watch them interact--Reece loves to make Aubrey laugh.

This is only the second time Aubrey has stayed overnight. She was fine until bedtime. While I was putting Reece to bed, Ron held her and gave her a bottle. Then she got fussy, and was crying when I came out, but settled right down when I took her. I held her while I read my emails, rocking her and snuggling, and she went to sleep. Ron is sleeping with Reece in one room, and I'll join Aubrey in our room soon. She looks like a little angel asleep on my bed.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Sisterhood Award

JoAnn at The Creamer Chronicles gave me this really nice award.

Here is what she wrote on her blog about me:

Kalona, a beautiful example of a Christian woman. She tirelessly takes care of everyone around her and I love reading about her days. She even homeschools her grandchildren (who are absolutely adorable!) She is a wonderful inspiration!

Aww, that is so kind. Thank you, JoAnn!

I would like to give the award to Linda at Don't Poke The Baby, Angela at Where Angels Go and Sarah at Ora And Labora-Journey Of Truth. I admire all three of them for the way they share their lives and their Catholic faith with their readers, never afraid to speak out against wrong and speak up for truth.

Linda, a lovely young mom of six, is also a photographer who volunteers with the organization, Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep (NILMDTS). She is there during one of the most intimate and heartbreaking times of a parent's life--when they lose their newborn baby. Many parents want photographs in memory of their precious little one, and call on NILMDTS. I can't imagine the love and sensitivity one must possess to take those precious photographs.

Angela is a fellow Catholic convert who shares her Catholic life with her readers, taking us with her on her journey. You never know what you will find on her blog. It might be posts about what is happening at work, what she is doing at her church, pictures of a trip or her environment, a recipe, or it might be a video of her showing us her sacramentals. :o) We have a lot in common. Love her!

Sarah is a funny, real, down-to-earth Catholic mom and military wife. I enjoy reading her blog because so much of her life reminds me of mine when my kids were younger and my husband was still on active duty. She never seems to lose her sense of humor, no matter what is going on in her busy life. She makes me smile.

And those are just three of my blogging "sisters." Go visit their blogs. :o)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Lumpy Palms and Frozen Shoulders

I've got 'em. :o) I was at BAMC this afternoon for my appointment at the orthopedic clinic. I always dread having to go, but once I get there they take wonderful care of me. Well, the docs and lab techs do--the civilian staff at the desks, not so much. Two young women staffing the desk in the ortho clinic got into an ugly argument, overheard by everyone in the waiting room--totally unprofessional. Good thing I'm not their supervisor, I'd have fired them on the spot.

Anyway, after x-rays and an exam by the doctor, I found out that the lumps in the palms of my hands are caused by Dupuytren's Syndrome and the pain in my shoulder and arm is from adhesive capsulitis (frozen shoulder). They suspect that both of these are caused or aggravated by my stupid diabetes. Don't ever get diabetes. It's the pits.

The Dupuytrens sometimes resolves on its own. Or it could get worse, causing my hands to contract and making it difficult to grasp. If that happens, there are various treatments to consider. It's not painful, just weird.

The doctor is referring me to physical therapy for the frozen shoulder. Therapy could improve my condition, or it could make it worse. Further treatment will be evaluated after we see what the phyical therapy does.

Having better control of my diabetes could cause improvement in both conditions. I stopped at the pharmacy to pick up my Metformin refill today, and have resolved to take it correctly and to get my diet back on track. I'm not overweight, so sticking to a diet didn't seem as important to me as it should have been. I did great when I was first diagnosed, but lately I haven't been taking my Met, and I haven't been eating properly, plus I've been battling the hyperthyroidism. Thus, lumpy palms and frozen shoulder. I told you I'm falling apart. :o)

I hate it when old ladies sit around complaining about their aches and pains, don't you? :o) So I'll stop and talk about my grandson.

Reece and I went for a walk when he was here on Tuesday. We walked a long way, taking a new route for him. He loved it! We were looking for signs of spring, and he really enjoyed seeing the flowers, birds, and other sights along the way.

The next day when I took him home, he was playing with his cars on the couch at his house and something happened and he said, "Crap." And everyone turned and looked at me! His mama said that he had said it before, and when she asked him who taught him that word, he said, "Gramma." I am embarrassed to say that he did hear that bad word from me, but I promise that I did not teach him, "What the hell?" He must have learned that from his daddy. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Thirteen Good Bishops

This is the list (as of today) of U.S. Bishops who have spoken out in opposition to Notre Dame's decision to have Barack Obama speak at commencement this year, and to give him an honorary degree. Not only are our Catholic Bishops speaking out, but the students and alumni of Notre Dame are also expressing their disapproval.

1) Bishop John D'Arcy - Fort Wayne-South Bend, IN
2) Cardinal Francis George - Chicago, President, USCCB
3) Archbishop John C. Nienstedt - St. Paul/Minneapolis
4) Bishop Morlino - Madison, WI
5) Bishop Robert Lynch - St. Petersburg, FL
6) Archbishop Timothy Dolan - New York
7) Cardinal Daniel DiNardo - Houston, TX
8) Bishop Thomas Olmsted - Phoenix, AZ
9) Bishop Gregory Aymond - Austin, TX
10) Archbishop John J. Myers - Newark, NJ
11) Reverend Edward J. Slattery, Tulsa, OK
12) Bishop Kevin Rhoades - Harrisburg, PA
13) Bishop R. Walker Nickless - Sioux City, IA

I doubt any amount of criticism will change things now. The university's president has stated that he will not rescind the invitation, and Mr. Obama has said that he will accept it. But that should not keep the Catholic faithful and our leadership from expressing outrage that Notre Dame would honor a man so diametrically opposed to the Catholic position on life issues.

Yesterday I read somewhere that the Catholic Church should shut up and stay out of politics. This is not a political issue, this is a moral issue, and the leadership of the Church has every right to instruct the people regarding morality.

Happy Anniversary!

Happy Anniversary, Josh and Cyrise!
We love you.

From 1 Corinthians 13:

Love is patient.
Love is kind.
It is not jealous.
Love is not pompous,
it is not inflated,
it is not rude,
it does not seek its own interests,
it is not quick-tempered,
it does not brood over injury.
It does not rejoice over wrongdoing
but rejoices with the truth.
It bears all things,
believes all things,
hopes all things,
endures all things.
Love never fails.

May your love for one another last throughout eternity, growing deeper with each year. God bless your marriage, and God bless both of you.