Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Preparationpalooza, August -style

We are home from all our car trips, the latest being a nice visit with Meghann and fam in Kalamazoo. Now, we must get down to all the preparation for our Chinese student, who will be living with us for the school year. That and I just have to undertake refinishing our wood floors and doing a deep cleaning of the whole house. That's just how I do.

Also, since July 4th, my Mother-in-law has either been hospitalized or in rehab. Today, she is in the hospital, as the docs are having a hard time getting her stabilized. Bob had been heroically holding down the fort and keeping up with Mom till I got home a few days ago. Ben was the resident cook and cat companion.

So, as I sit writing this, with my week-old sunburn simultaneously itching and then hurting, I am gearing up for lots of Stuff. Malaika will become a high school student in mere weeks, and if you have had one or more of those, you know how busy and slightly stressful the run up can be. Uniforms, tryouts for sports, physicals and dental check ups, ID pictures, orientation, becoming a fledgling Septa rider, supplies... oh, and the ever lovely tuition and sundry expensive fees. And then when our student arrives, (whenever that will be), we get to run about getting her outfitted as well! I hope she gets here before the very last minute.

Here are a few pictures from Michigan. I fear I am not up to a very good narration. Everyone had a turn with a cold, and now is mine. I have been having a slow re-entry into post vacation life.



 We had frequent backyard bonfires in the evenings. Some nights, the fires were sluggish to get started. Yes, that is the dried out top of their Christmas tree. Smelled nice!


 Kaden's garden, and then a bunch of posed pics in front of all the pretty daisies by Meghann's shed.













And then the beach pics. I love going to Lake Michigan.
 Malaika, Kaden and Rachael building a sand castle.


 Kaden likes the warm sand, sans towel, after a swim.


Meghann takes ambush shots when I am not looking, You can see what a beautiful day it was. though. 






 Here we are at Bell's. There are tons of breweries in Kalamazoo. We were never lacking good beer!





















Kaden and I at Olive Garden. You can see he got an owie by his eye. He ran into a gate latch a few days before this. He bore it bravely. Boys! :)
 Here is the Jesus-mobile we saw in downtown Kalamazoo one day. Giving Jesus a bad name...





 Rachael



I am still pondering the future of this blog. I may stop, but it kind of feels like a part of me. I have been at it for four years! Or I may narrow the focus. Whatever I finally decide, thanks for reading my thoughts.



Not that this is an aside in the realm of importance, but if you are a person of prayer, please pray for our unraveling world. And for everyone who is being persecuted or terrorized or mistreated. I wish I could say I am surprised, but it has all been building for some time now. Now would be a very good time for people to find, rediscover, build up, deepen, or otherwise pay attention to their faith. Teach your children now, while you still can. Openly at least. We are going to stand out from society in starker and starker relief, and it may not be an acceptable thing in the days to come.

Pray the Divine Mercy.


1. Begin with the Sign of the Cross, 1 Our Father, 1 Hail Mary and The Apostles Creed.
2. Then on the Our Father Beads say the following:
Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.
3. On the 10 Hail Mary Beads say the following:
For the sake of His sorrowful Passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world.
(Repeat step 2 and 3 for all five decades).
4. Conclude with (three times):
Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.


In 1933, God gave Sister Faustina a striking vision of His Mercy,
Sister tells us:

"I saw a great light, with God the Father in the midst of it.
Between this light and the earth I saw Jesus nailed to the Cross
and in such a way that God, wanting to look upon the earth, had to
look through Our Lord's wounds and I understood that God blessed
the earth for the sake of Jesus."

Of another vision on Sept. 13, 1935, she writes:
"I saw an Angel, the executor of God's wrath... about to strike
the earth...I began to beg God earnestly for the world with words
which I heard interiorly. As I prayed in this way, I saw the
Angel's helplessness, and he could not carry out the just
punishment...."

The following day an inner voice taught her to say this prayer on
ordinary rosary beads:

"First say one 'Our Father', 'Hail Mary', and 'I believe'. Then on
the large beads say the following words:

'Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity
of Your dearly beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement
for our sins and those of the whole world.'

On the smaller beads you are to say the following words:
'For the sake of His sorrowful Passion have mercy on us and on the
whole world.'

In conclusion you are to say these words three times:
'Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us
and on the whole world'.

Jesus said later to Sister Faustina:
"Say unceasingly this chaplet that I have taught you. Anyone who
says it will receive great Mercy at the hour of death. Priests
will recommend it to sinners as the last hope. Even the most
hardened sinner, if he recites this Chaplet even once, will
receive grace from My Infinite Mercy. I want the whole world to
know My Infinite Mercy. I want to give unimaginable graces to
those who trust in My Mercy...."

"....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".



Read more:http://www.ewtn.com/devotionals/mercy/dmmap.htm#ixzz38L9anUA0
                    

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

the summer of the car


About ten days ago, we drove to see my brother for a long weekend. He lives in the Roan mountains in North Carolina. Remote, idyllic. My favorite kind of place. And so nice to spend some time with him.






morning sounds












This is me, my nephew Elijah, his wife Julie, Bob, Cindy (Gary's wife), and Ben.




As I write this, I am less than an hour from leaving for Michigan. It has been a fun spring and summer as far as traveling goes.

I would ask your prayers for my mother-in-law, as she has been admitted to hospital. She is improving, but at 86, it takes a bit longer to bounce back from illnesses. Her spirits are good, as usual, and she is charming her caregivers.

My minute readership may have noticed that I haven't been blogging much. Not sure if I am going to stop, but I am thinking and praying. Kind of wanting to take a kind of retreat from the online presence. We'll see! For now, I am headed to my daughter's in Michigan and the company of my grandson.

Hope everyone is as blessed as I and enjoying their summer!

Peace, 

Kelly

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Help a friend. Gain a Naked Mole Rat incentive.






There are many levels of contribution, include the "Naked Mole Rat Level." For that reason alone, you should go and check it out. Oh, and if you like coffee, there is a treat on the page.

I can't think of anybody the world needs an album from more than Father Kevin.

Go there. Now.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Through half closed eyes





Yes, I am still here, and even mostly alive!

We were away for about a week in May; my husband played in the Chicago International Amateur Piano Competition! It was his first big competition experience and he did wonderfully.



During his performance, from my seat. Not the greatest picture.

Here is Kaden sitting nicely, looking at the gorgeous hall, and that arm next to him is Malaika. In a dress. That is how much she wanted to support Bob.



















While out there, we got lots of glorious time with Meghann, Jeff and Kaden. They put us up for the whole week minus the two Chicago days. Where, as you can see, Kaden accompanied us. He wanted to go to A-cago too! And so he did.






Here are a few shots from Kalamazoo. This is the Bog Trail,pictured at the top also: a floating pathway through, well, a bog. But it was a beautiful day, as you can see here, where Malaika is starting out.























                  ----- here, you may see the trail sinking a little. There were places where it sunk a LOT. At one point the adults were knee-deep in cold, dark, bog water. Meghann might have done some screaming. I have pictures, but I would like to continue to be on speaking terms with her. Fairly hilarious.





 these are from the Sky Deck in downtown Kalamazoo. Fun evening, as you can see.

Now, back home, All the Things are needing to be attended to and the people cared for, and the issues dealt with.

 God is good, and I believe we are all in His hands, even when it doesn't look like it, or feel like it.. His grace is sufficient. I am finding if I just try to do my little part, (aka,  change the things I can and accept those I can't), I live less in the world of the overwhelmed.

 I have been able to get to some daily masses, my beloved Latin Mass, and do some very humble fasts for prayer intentions. I have gotten back to working out. Again, be it ever so meager. Hanging out my laundry, planting flowers and sitting out back with a book ( I have recently discovered Flannery O'Connor)---all of this has been so helpful. And of course, all of you who have kept us in prayer, thank you so very much.

It has just been a time of-- it seems like a hundred transitions-- all happening at once. I have resigned as chief plate-spinner, realizing it wasn't my job anyway, and now am content as cook and bottle washer. And general servant. This works out much better. Yeah, I still have little moments of what-if? terror. But then I offer those too, and go on. I accept the smaller moments of beauty and peace as the gifts from God they are.


And, from where comes my help:

From Sunday's mass:








Kalamazoo

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Today, just today.


I am  making my way through a time of having to trust God hour by hour, day by day, for how to deal with a certain parenting situation. The kind all parents dread, and not many escape completely. 

His grace is all the more sweet in contrast with the darkness of the trial. I can choose each day to believe He is my very present help in trouble.

But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.
2 Corinthians 12:9

Here is a song, in honor of Manny's Music Tuesdays. His is much more put together, while this is just me posting a song that I enjoy. Hope you do too! 






I have set aside Mondays to pray, fast, and do sacrifice for my kids. You are certainly invited to join me! It does not have to be on Monday, just any day that is best for you. Together we can lift up our kids. This is not an easy time in which to be growing up!