Archive for the month “March, 2010”

a little break

taking some time off to meditate on the Passion. Death. and Suffering of Our Lord.

praying for all of you.

“i have many distractions, but as soon as i am aware of them, i pray for those people the thought of whom is diverting my attention. in this way, they reap the benefit of my distractions.” ~st. therese of lisieux

saddened by all of the purple.

“our joy depends on the Cross, and our Lord would not enter into His glory save by the way of bitterness. He leads you by the same path as the Saints.” ~st. vincent de paul

longing to hear that alleluia again.

“if we endure all things patiently and with gladness, thinking on the sufferings of our Blessed Lord, and bearing all for the love of Him: herein is our perfect joy.” ~st. francis of assisi

hoping to taste some of that joy on sunday.

“the Blessed Eucharist is the perfect Sacrament of the Lord’s Passion, since it contains Christ Himself .” ~st. thomas aquinas

wondering where these 40 days went and perhaps being too scrupulous about all of my miserable failures.

“but since all your satisfactions and penances are too small and deficient to atone for so many sins, unite them to those of your Saviour Jesus lifted upon the Cross, receive His Divine Blood as it flows from His wounds, and offer It up to appease Divine Justice.” ~st. peter julian eymard

and wishing you a very blessed Easter in advance.

“remember not former things and look not on things of old. behold I do new things and now they shall spring forth. (43:18)

I am He that blot out thy iniquities.  for My own sake I will not remember them. (43:25)

but He was wounded for our iniquities: He was bruised for our sins.

the chastisement of our peace was upon Him.

and by His bruises. we are healed (53:5)” ~isaias.


“prayer ascends and mercy descends. high as are the heavens and low as is the earth, God hears the voice of man.” ~st. augustine.

station keeping

daisy chains on lampshades. blooming flowers and marshmallow atoms. a few frivolities from this past week. things that didn’t go unnoticed by this tired mama.

i had a hundred things on my mind. but now as i sit here i can’t remember any of them.

i could brag about how clean my kitchen is and how i am caught up on my laundry. but i can’t take credit for such sweet successes. because those organizational feats, friends, are truly just the fruits from the power of praying the rosary. no matter how busy we were this week i made sure we fingered those beads every chance we got.

in fact i clung to them.

hanging on for dear life.

because there is peace of mind that comes from the gentle repetition of those prayers making the yoke easier and the burden lighter.

the spirit of those prayers is the same spirit that gave mary the grace and the strength to stand at the foot of the cross. her station keeping.

but not only did she stand there she walked. she prayed. she wept. she consoled her tender Child.

close to Him to the last.

lent is almost over and i don’t know if i am any closer to Jesus. there were certain habits of mine that i worked on. crushing my own will being one of them. and let me tell you, it’s not easy, this path to holiness thing. the consistency. the dedication.

but if sanctification through loads of laundry and piles of dishes is where i am to keep station, then who am i to complain?

i don’t deserve easter. i don’t deserve heaven either.

none of us do.

but it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t keep trying.

and encouraging each other along the way.

veronica wipes the face of Jesus.

because all of it is easier said than done.

our crosses are often heavy.

simon helps Jesus carry His cross.

but we should never lose sight of those words…close to Jesus to the last.

that is definitely where i want to be.


or is it bleh?

either way. that is my week in a nutshell. and when that’s the way it is i do hate to bore you with gory details.

one good thing i am working on is giving my highschooler a living education. i am so glad simply charlotte mason is starting to talk about this issue. ’cause it is very dear to my heart right now. but it isn’t easy.

i don’t write a lot about homeschooling here per se because usually by the end of the day i am so tired and my brain is going in so many different directions that the last thing i want to do is try to put my homeschooling thoughts into words.

besides it’s more fun to talk about sweet things here. like sewing and food.

maybe someday i’ll write it all down.

but until then. bleh. and blah will have to do.

for sanity i am reading the guernsey literary and potato peel pie society. i know many of you have read it too. what did you think of it? it reminds me a lot of daddy long legs by jean webster. that was one of my most favoritest books as a girl. i have a beautiful hardcover. albeit tattered old copy that i was giddy to give to my girl when she read it for the first time. my name was written in that fat bubbly young girl writing just inside the front cover.

i am still reading it. so don’t give me too much information. but i hope it is worth my time. i don’t really read a lot for myself. i read stacks of books to the kids but i find that when i do get a book for myself that i love i’d rather not get out of bed in the morning and start school. i could truly sit in bed and just read. and if my ducklings would like to come into my bed and bring their own books. quietly read to themselves. well then that would be just fine with me. in fact i could make a day out of it.

which is almost what i did this morning. because of blah.

but then my husband came by the house for some tool or something he had forgotten and that was the end of that. i had to get up and look busy.

so the moment was gone.

and unfortunately the calendar doesn’t allow for much lounging time between now and next tuesday.

no otium sanctum. 

my flowers will be lucky if they get watered.

hope life is treating you well. and if you feel blah too. i’ll scoot over and make some room in my bed and you can bring a book and come sit by me.

but you have to be still. and quiet.

the adventure

of ordinary things. ~laura ingalls wilder

kites. balloons and their capacity to make statick-y hair. running till you’re out of breath. girls who sketch wildflowers. a husband who brings home frozen dinner because he thought i’d be too tired to cook. a pile of new library books-(this link is for you cici-it even gives an idea where to put all that embroidery like we talked about!). pages waiting to be discovered with a giggly pair of little ones. a new exercise routine which involves that same giggly pair (let’s see if i can get out of bed in the morning!). a new spring pillow for the yellow chair. oops. was i supposed to iron it? it was a late sunday nite sewing endeavor. those are exempt from ironing.

otium sanctum


holy leisure.

devoting free time to a laudable purpose.

necessary to nurture spiritual interiority.

st. augustine writes about it in his confessions.

as mamas sometimes it is hard to find the time to find any free time. but with this lengthening of days i have found that the best place for me is outside

while i read or tend to the sweet little garden. which they sometimes help me with. they ride their bikes. dig in the dirt. play catch.

we all need free time. away from the schedules and constraints of life.

time to be so un-busy that you actually notice the first yellow swallowtail of the season. which is what we did today.

holy leisure. during this holy season of lent.

yes, friends, God is good.

happy first day of spring!

i think i can…

stay up till midnight ’cause my “body clock” says it’s really only 11 o’clock.

do you try to “cheat” daylight savings time like that too?

except it is catching up to me.

which is why those little foil packets in that picture below are quite often my best friends.

i think i could possibly rule the world if i drank italian roast coffee off and on all the day long.

or at the very least this small corner of the world.

sadly enough this dangerous behaviour is making me feel funny again.

some people. namely obsessive compulsive people such as myself. shouldn’t even be allowed to purchase coffee. it is a drug. and when it is put into the wrong cup the results can be devastating.

i am sleep deprived. out of whack. and this small little corner of the world doesn’t run smoothly that way. quality is suffering. and i am going to quit coffee. cold turkey. again.

i’ve stocked up on green tea. vitamins. sam-e. and a few other things that should help get me thru the day.

if you don’t suffer from this love/hate relationship with the bean, as my dad calls it, what do you do to “keep going and going and going….” because let’s face it. none of us are pink. furry and have the time to bang on a silly drum all day.

i do have the running in circles thing in common with that engergizer bunny though.

and maybe i’d even like some glasses like his… 

p.s. happy belated st. patty’s day. we did have a blast. hope you did too.

spring-ing ahead

this time change has me out of sorts. it always does for the first month. or so. but the lovely burst of warm weather we are having is making the transition a little easier.

moving books and students outside this afternoon to tackle long division and copywork with the sun shining on our faces made the grueling task a bit easier.

there were still some tears. because of the long division. but for some reason doing work outside with our sweet garden flowers smiling at us and hearing the birds singing their spring serenade makes all the other stuff seem not so bad.

even the weeds were pretty.

sounds idyllic, huh? well, humor me, would ya?

our census packets came today. i am planning a unit study on this subject.

here are just a few things we are reading:

a spotlight for harry 

spellbinder the life of harry houdini

edward lear’s the scroobious pip 

whiskers and rhymes

peter and the wolf

and tico and the golden wings .

leo lionni is quickly becoming one of our all time favorite authors. we love. love. love his artwork and his stories. he is up there with eric carle and tomie de paola.

speaking of love. i am loving embroidery these days. knitting stitches are so hard for me to keep track of right now. i thought that somehow baseball season would afford some quality chair sitting. knitting time. but that is just not happening. so instead of being a poor sport i am venturing out with my scary lump of embroidery thread. i think i’ve shown it to you before. it’s so big it is impossible to lose track of it. i say it like it is an entity. and really it is!

my girl requested a custom embroidery piece. a cute little hoop with a certain bird. music notes and flowers. and i, being the attentive mother, obliged.

i obliged mostly because one day i noticed that the doll cradle was no longer being played with. it was upstairs in a pile of “things to be put away”. i felt a lump in my throat because i had meant to paint it but never got around to it. and that made me really sad so i am trying not to let that happen again.

the time wherein your children specifically request certain things from you doesn’t last long. and i hate having regrets.

are there specific things you regret with regards to your kids? things you’ve left undone?

come on. make me feel better….

standing by and other mama verbs

standing by to watch and count all of the missed catches.

stopping long enough to embroider some flossie doodles.

enjoying some orange marmalade from a friend.

wanting to selfishly stay up late to knit. sew. read. pray. blog. anything. but selflessly going to bed earlier to be better and brighter for them in the morning.

trying to keep the kitchen clean after all meals. (this is a tough one).

taking the time to really look at the pretty colors of the wings of a plastic parrot when they are being shown to me by the littlest hands in my life.

marvelling at that wonderful. purple grape hyacinth. i am loving the magic of bulbs. such a slow hobby. requiring a lot of patience. but the results are so delightful!

thinking about our st. joseph altars. i need a bigger statue. one that doesn’t have such a disfigured face. poor st. joseph.

wishing you all a lovely weekend. and hoping that at least some of your mama verbs are beautiful ones.

home education snapshots

frabjous-ness and random-ness

ranunculus are frabjous.

if you’ve been to wonderland recently, as we have on sunday, you’ll probably want to use that word too.

fresh flowers tucked in different parts of the house really cheers me up.

today was wicked cold and dreary. it felt a lot like march is supposed to feel. my fingers are numb. fingerless mitts simply aren’t enough.

i am really loving this song. but the video is so weird. i must be getting old. (but not old enough to not be contemplating going to see them in mexico this summer. even after i promised my mother i wouldn’t be going there again after our last stint there wherein our taxi driver talked so nonchalantly with my husband-in spanish- about how peoples’ organs were being stolen and harvested in local hospitals and the recent murder at the airport for something drug-related-while i silently prayed a litany of ave maria’s that we’d get home to our babies.)

but back to the song.

it did make me think a lot about my cousins who were killed in the last few years. such tragic. untimely deaths.

the trial for olivia is starting this month. i type her name because people don’t often want to say the name of a victim of a violent crime. they are afraid of the painful memories it evokes.

my family is going to need a lot of prayer. murder is one of those things that leaves a bad taste in your mouth. it affects you in a way like you never imagined and healing and forgiveness only comes with the grace of God.

up since 6 am i am tired.

i had to leave the house for a number of errands out-of-town. one of which took me to the big mall. i hate big malls. for various reasons. the annoying music. bright flashing lights and army of mannequins in old navy being only a few.

but my favorite face-make up (one of my luxuries i afford myself). the only make-up that covers my freckles. and makes me feel slighty pretty is at that awful mall.

and so there i went. and there i waited way too long. only to come home and find out that it is available online.

i love shopping online. for various reasons. saving money by not having to buy a certain teenager a pair of shoes. some pants and shorts being just a few.

a certain teenager who is signing up for driver’s ed this week.

that is not frabjous.

so what little luxuries do you afford yourself, if and when you can?

we all have an achille’s heel.

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