Monday, November 30, 2009

Advent Begins

Our preparations for the birth of our Savior begin... with the first candle in our Advent Wreath being lit at the first Mass of the new liturgical year.

During this time of preparation, we will hunt, chop and trim a tree, decorate our house, fine-tune our wish lists and spend many hours making special gifts for loved ones.  We will continue attending our daily Masses and spend a little bit of extra time in prayer and scripture study.   Our life-sized lawn nativity scene will be erected and our CD player will get over-used playing the sounds of the season.

So much to look forward to...
Thank you, Jesus!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving Review

Things to remember about Thanksgiving 2009:

The boys' help with...
Tim's help with...
turkey carving
sanity checks

Great company
Amazing liturgy (Mass)
Connecting with far-away family over the phone

Things to forget about Thanksgiving 2009:
fresh green beans (which I forgot to cook until the whole dinner was nearly table-ready...)
left-over green beans (which were in a beautiful Italian ~wedding present~~ serving bowl on the stove after dinner when I accidentally turned on the wrong burner to heat the kettle for tea... and cracked the bowl!)

Quote to ponder before getting too busy with other holiday preparations:
The rush and pressure of modern life are a form, perhaps the most common form of its innate violence.
To allow oneself to be carried away by the multitude of conflicting concerns, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone with everything is to succumb to violence, more than it is cooperation with violence. The frenzy of the activist neutralizes her or his work forpeace. It destroys her or his inner capacity
for peace. It destroys the fruitfulness of work because it kills the root of inner wisdom which makes work fruitful.
--Thomas Merton
Thomas Merton (1915-1968) was a writer and Trappist monk at Our Lady of Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fall Colors

beautiful smiles
dreams for the future
brotherhood lives

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Did you say
Peter: Mom, do you know the Teletubbies?
Me: Yes... (I'm wondering where this is going... as I am quite sure Peter has never seen or heard of Teletubbies.)
Peter: Did you know they are anti-Christian?
Me: Really? What makes you say that? When did you see Teletubbies?
Peter: My friend told me that they are very anti-Christian.
Me: That sounds odd. I'm not sure how they could be, they're pretty simple... (I'm making a note to ask his friend's mom to help me get to the bottom of this perplexing information.)
My friend sent a quick reply to my request for details on the reported bad habits of the seemingly harmless creatures:
I just got to the bottom of this. Coming home one night they were discussing how (some say), "I love Teletubbies!" And because our van is so large and has the diesel engine, I thought they were discussing the Taliban. This led to a discussion about who the Taliban are... my guess is that he mixed up the names and honestly thought that's what Teletubbies were (he's never seen the show). He is insisting that I must have misinformed him, but he'd rather be burned at the stake than to admit me made a mistake. My apologies for the miseducation of your son!!!
As far as the educational factor of this incident, this is the perfect example of the lessons learned in the "telephone" game (where one person whispers a sentence in the ear of another and by the time it goes around the room it is all distorted).
Instead of the telephone game, we could call this the Teletubbies game!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Weston Time!
Last stop:
Meeting 7 week old Weston and celebrating Sawyer's 2nd birthday (a bit late).
We were also able to tour Uncle Craig and Aunt Bethany's new veterinary clinic, which is very classy.
The boys loved holding Weston, who is just beginning to smile socially. We took lots of photos and enjoyed a lazy morning at home playing with trains (a set we've given to the cousins).

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


Lilly's Pad

Our family dinner on Sunday night was hosted by my baby brother, Michael and his family (Katie and little Lilly). Molly helped with menu prep and as always, the food was amazing!

Holding my little niece, Lilly, for the first time was a wonderful joy. She was a tiny thing at birth (4 lbs) and now at 4 months she's bigger but still very petite.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Our Trip
to Tacoma and beyond!

First stop:
Archdiocesan High School Youth Convention in Bellevue, where we attended the vigil Mass celebrated by Bishop Elizondo with Zachary and our local youth group attendees. (no photos)
We joined them afterward at their hotel for a short visit before our drive south continued.

Next stop: Morning Mass at St. Charles (the parish of my youth, where I attended grade school)...worshiping with my little sister, Molly, and her family (Mike in white, Kati in red, Niko in blue) and with my life-long friend (and Zac and Joseph's godmother) Aileen and her family (Peter in purple, Ryan in blue).

Joseph and Peter then spent the afternoon with my brother's family (cousins MacKenzie, Brendan, and Jacob) while Tim and I attended our catechetical training year 3 class: Continuing the Faith Journey. Great class!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

boldly go forth

Look, Peter is defending the unborn...
Don't you love his pro-life pumpkin?
Hopefully it touched the hearts of many of the kids (and their accompanying adults) who visited our porch on Halloween.

Joseph mostly wanted to bash a pumpkin with his mace, but alas, he lacked the required adult permission! Maybe next year... or not. It really wouldn't be Halloween around here without weapons for props.

The boys put their trick or treating costumes together all by themselves this year. There were odds & ends to choose from~ our costume collection barely fits into a large rolling hockey gear bag. Peter's St. John Vianney costume for All Saints Day did require a last minute sewing marathon, so I didn't feel too left-out or out-grown as the costume designer (a role for which my mom set a pretty high standard!).

There were fun times trick or treating in the 'hood. Joseph and Peter were ever so polite to each and every person who gave them a treat.

I was holding out for Skittles or Starburst (collected as a tax), but their bags were full of chocolate varieties this year.... oh well. In years' past, we would buy back their candy and give it away at the shop(s). This year it's all stashed in their rooms, and they ask permission each time they want a piece (really!). Usually I answer with, "After you finish your math!" or "After the bathroom is cleaned!" So the candy actually works out quite nicely as a the carrot on the stick! It all gets confiscated if I find one wrapper on the floor instead of in the garbage can... so they're on the watch for litter, too!

Monday, November 2, 2009



Today we remember all the faithful departed, who may be awaiting the Heavenly Kingdom.

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon them. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace. Amen.

Sunday, November 1, 2009


Today we honor All Saints~ the holy men and women who have gone before us and have entered into God's Heavenly Kingdom.

Children came to Mass dressed as their favorite saints and were given the opportunity to teach the congregation about them. Peter chose to be Saint John Vianney who is the patron saint of priests. St. John Vianney said, "You either belong wholly to God, or wholly to the world."

We also heard from children representing Saint Luke, Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha, Saint Michael the Archangel, Saint Damien, and Saint Hildegard. At the 8:30 Mass, children presented Saint Louis, Saint Gabriel, Saint Bernadette, and Saint Isaac Jogues to name a few.

Yesterday we celebrate the vigil of All Saints Day, Halloween (All Hallows' Eve), with the fun of trick or treating in our neighborhood (more soon).

Happy All Saints Day...
Let's be like the saints today and everyday, serving God with our lives and giving up our will for His.