Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Saturday, March 28, 2009
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
In the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin pledged to be married to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. Having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, you highly favored one! The Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women!” But when she saw him, she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered what kind of salutation this might be. The angel said to her, “Don’t be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bring forth a son, and will call his name ‘Jesus.’ He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father, David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever. There will be no end to his Kingdom.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, seeing I am a virgin?” The angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore also the holy one who is born from you will be called the Son of God. Behold, Elizabeth, your relative, also has conceived a son in her old age; and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For everything spoken by God is possible.” Mary said, “Behold, the handmaid of the Lord; be it to me according to your word.” The angel departed from her.
Monday, March 23, 2009
Saint Francis de Sales
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Friday, March 20, 2009
We have our large statue as part of our dining table centrepiece.
Went to Women's Group from our parish after work, a meeting I organised to be held at a coffee shop at a local shopping centre ( of course, where else would I organise this? ). We talked about our Lent so far, our thoughts, our laughter, our things that need prayer, our questions ( do you fast on the feast day of St Joseph? As if!). I left money at home for takeaway pizza for dinner for dh and the kids ( feasting on the feast of St Joseph) and some purple ( purple for Saint Joseph) wrapped chocolate for them all for dessert.
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Monday, March 16, 2009
The ancients used to hallow places. They set aside groves and grottoes and mountains, and built temples and shrines and enclaves..modern Christians often find it difficult to keep alive any notion at all of mystery, or of the hallowed, except perhaps as a sort of cloud or glow that ought to suffuse their imagination when they pray or worship..
Somehow we have gotten swept into a millrace, and its nonstop flailing and thrashing just to keep ourselves from drowning. The sheer necessities of modern life sweep us farther and farther from any sense that it is all hallowed, really. What are we to do?
..A possibility would be to accept the fact that life comes tumbling at us nowadays, but that it is nonetheless possible for us to see our ordinary daily routines as proceeding among the hallows, so to speak; and by stirring up in our minds the things that we vaguely acknowledge anyway, to begin to hallow those routines by doing once more what men have always done with things to hallow them; namely, offering them up in oblation to God. As literally as Abel offered up sacrifices from his ordinary routine of work.
..To do this, of course, we will have to recover the sense of the hallowed as being all around us...We will have to refuse resolutely the secularism that has made ordinariness unholy. We live in a dark age, and somewhere in this murk there has got to be lights burning in shrines and on altars, bearing witness to the presence of the holy.
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Friday, March 13, 2009
Fidelity. Faithfulness. Describes a recent discussion with a friend, another mother. Wow. I talk about this to a friend and then read about fidelity in my missal. Serendipitous.
I bought an Easter book today - the story of Easter, of joy, of redemption. A picture book , filled with luminous illustrations. For reading..the story is touching...for strewing...the illustrations are lovely.
Thursday, March 12, 2009
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
We coloured in the Stations of the Cross, for mum, er, for display. Colouring in while watching Stargate Atlantis. I find colouring to be rthymic, relaxing, fun.
Yet, strangely, bizarrely, it is my other reading, and my movie going, that is striking me. Hitting me. Making me come up for air.
How do I know you didn't try to flush our entire fucking family down the toilet?
Hopeless emptiness. Now you've said it. Plenty of people are onto the emptiness, but it takes real guts to see the hopelessness.
It takes backbone to lead the life you want, Frank.... You're just some guy who made me laugh at a party once. ...I saw a whole other future. I can't stop seeing it.
Just because you've got me safe in this little trap, you think you can bully me into feeling whatever you want me to feel!
Quotes from Revolutionary Road. My non-Lenten current reading. And yet there is something of the spiritual there. Something that pokes into my soul and into my life.
The same with The Secret Life of Bees, a movie we, some other mothers and I , saw last night. I cried. I screamed ( aloud, in the cinema) at one particular act of violence..... Now, I'm on a search for the book. Because this movie laid bare my thoughts, my cares, those things often locked away and kept secret. But things, concepts, ideas, feelings, prayers, that should be pondered, prayed, during Lent, during a time of spiritual renewal. Of listening to God.
Not always in that still quiet voice but perhaps in words from a book or a film.
Every human being on the face of the earth has a steel plate in his head, but if you lie down now and then and get still as you can, it will slide open like elevator doors, letting in all the secret thoughts that have been standing around so patiently, pushing the button for a ride to the top. The real troubles in life happen when those hidden doors stay closed for too long.
People who think dying is the worst thing don’t know a thing about life.
... when it's time to die, die, and when it's time to live, live. Don't sort-of-maybe live, but live like you're going all out, like you're not afraid (of dying).
... there is nothing but mystery in the world, how it hides behind the fabric of our poor, browbeat days, shining brightly, and we don't even know it.
The first week at August's was a consolation, a pure relief. The world will give you that once in a while, a brief time-out; the boxing bell rings and you go to your corner, where somebody dabs mercy on your beat-up life.
... women make the best beekeepers, 'cause they have a special ability built into them to love creatures that sting. It comes from years of loving children and husbands.
You could not stop a bee from working if you tried. ... they are hardworking to the point of killing themselves. Sometimes you want to say to them, Relax, take some time off, you deserve it.
Good advice. Take some time off this Lent to think, to pray, to do penance, to really look at things, to help others.For, we do not necessarily live lives of quiet desperation. No,
Thoreau, we do in fact have many mysteries and many joys in our lives. We simply have to count them, these joys, to look for them, to live them, to grasp life and joy and run and laugh... . To face up to the sorrows, to remember the sorrows of Our Lord and His Mother and to rise up in love.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Sunday, March 08, 2009
Camembert Pasta. After Stations of the Cross. And with red wine. From Jamie Oliver's
Ministry of Food.
Thursday, March 05, 2009
According to the Council of Trent, the Sacrament of Confirmation makes us perfect Christians ...Confirmation makes the Christian a soldier and marks him with a new character...
It is evident from its celebration that the effect of the sacrament of Confirmation is the full outpouring of the Holy Spirit as once granted to the apostles on the day of Pentecost.
Catechism of the Catholic Church
May the Holy Spirit come down upon you, and the power of the Most High keep you from all sin. Amen.
Wednesday, March 04, 2009
I am reading Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates. The book on which the movie was based.
Remember the movie and my thoughts?
I couldn't quite shake the movie from my head. The characters haunted me. As did their actions. Their choices. Their roles. Their marriages. Their lives.
The book has a similar effect. Some poignant, almost pregnant, phrases. A line or two, a description, some dialogue, that causes me to hold my breath with its truth. Its pertinence and relevance.
Do others feel the same as I?
How does the author know me and my thoughts?
As in ~
But she needed no more advice and no more instruction. She was calm and quiet now with knowing what she had always known, what neither her parents nor Aunt Clara nor Frank nor anyone else had ever had to teach her: that if you wanted to do something absolutely honest, something true, it always turned out to be a thing that had to be done.
And isn't that hard sometimes? Doing the thing that has to be done. Regardless.
Then there is also this quote ~
The whole point of crying was to quit before you cornied it up. The whole point of grief itself was to cut it out while it was still honest, while it still meant something. Because the thing was so easily corrupted...
Cut it out. While still honest. Cut. Carve.
Haven't you been at that point in grieving, in sadness, that point where you just need to stop? Put it away. Go ahead. Move on. Pretend. Give it up?
The novel opens thoughts and wounds. Cathartic, one could say.
A good book is something to be savoured, especially this book, for me, during Lent and a time of self examination. Of prayer and penance.
Monday, March 02, 2009
We have been sharing meatless recipes at Unschooling Catholics email list.
I am such a good housewife! I even have recipes to share. Mainly because I dislike a lot of meat and eat many meatless dishes anyway.
Some of our family standbys -
150g (1 cup) self-raising flour, sifted
375g zucchini, grated
1 large onion, finely chopped
1 cup grated low fat cheddar cheese
60ml (1/4 cup) vegetable oil
Preheat oven to 170°C. Grease and line a 30 x 20cm lamington pan.
Beat the eggs in a large bowl until combined. Add the flour and beat until smooth, then add zucchini, onion, cheese and oil and stir to combine. Pour into the prepared pan and bake in oven for 30 minutes or until cooked through.
Peanut Butter Pasta ( ALSO NICE WITH RICE)
1/4 cup natural peanut butter
1/4 cup hot water
1/4 cup skim milk
1 tbsp soy sauce
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp cayenne (more if you like it spicy)
1/2 tsp black pepper
3-4 cups veggies (broccoli, peppers, carrots, peas, corn, etc), cut into bite size pieces - optional, sometimes we leave this out and just serve the pasta and sauce with lots of salad...
Cook the pasta. While the pasta is cooking, whisk together the peanut butter, hot water, and milk until smooth. Stir in the soy sauce, garlic, cayenne, salt and pepper. When pasta is almost done, add vegetables and cook for another couple of minutes. Drain and return to pot. Pour in the peanut sauce and toss well.
Nigella's Macaroni Cheese
500g macaroni cooked al dente
500g cheese chopped( low fat for me)
1 cup evaporated milk - but I usually just use skim milk
1/4 tspn of nutmeg ( but I usually just use paprika)
1. Preheat oven to 180 C.
2. Mix ingredients except pasta in blender. Pour into wide shallow dish that will fit ingredients. Stir in pasta.
3. Bake until melty around 10-15 minutes.
Nigella's Cheesy Risotto
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon oil
2 baby leeks (or fat spring onions), finely sliced
300g risotto rice
125ml white wine
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 litre hot vegetable stock
125g Cheddar, chopped
1.Melt the butter and oil in a medium-sized pan and cook the sliced baby leeks until they have softened.
2. Add the risotto rice and keep stirring for a minute or so, then turn up the heat and add the wine and mustard, stirring until the wine is absorbed.
3. Start ladling in the hot stock, letting each ladleful become absorbed as you stir, before adding the next one.
4. Stir and ladle until the rice is al dente, about 18 minutes, then add the cheese, stirring it into the rice until it melts.
5. Take the pan straight off the heat, still stirring as you do so, and spoon the risotto into warmed dishes.
Chana Dahl (yellow split peas) - we eat this with rice and veges
1tsp ground tumeric
1.5c chana dahl (or yellow split peas)
1clv garlic, peeled and chopped
1tsp red chilli powder (can substitute cayenne pepper)
Put the dahl in a big pot with five cups of water. Bring to a boil and remove any surface scum. Add the turmeric and ginger. Cover, leaving the lid slightly ajar, turn heat to low, and simmer gently for 1 1/2 hours or until the dahl is tender. ..I usually cheat and just bung this ll into the crocpot and cook on low all day....Most but not all of the water should be absorbed. Add the salt to the dahl, stir to mix. Heat some oil in a small frying pan over a medium flame. When hot, put in the curry powder. A couple seconds later, put in the garlic and onion. Stir and fry until lightly browned. Put the chilli powder into the pan. Immediately lift the pan off the heat and pour its entire contents into the pot with the dahl. Stir to mix.
Sunday, March 01, 2009
A holy card, about the Conventual Franciscans. We live in a parish under the care of the Conventual Franciscans.
A postcard of St Mary's Abbey, from son Greg's time in the UK.
Another holy card - St Maximilian Kolbe. I love this pic, this icon, the colours, so much, that I have it reproduced here on my blog.
Yet another holy card and prayer...
Bookmark, with Blessed Mary Mackillop on the front. A gift.
Two pamphlets from the friars- one about the Conventual Franciscans and one about plans for their Garden of the Immaculate, remembering the unborn.
Four, yes four, shopping list magnetic pads.Why four? I don't really know.
Signs for communicating with those who speak little English. Another gift. From a friend who remembers my many World Youth Day pilgrim gaffes ( ...Introducing an Italian friar to my friends - This is Fr. V. Don't worry. He can't understand you...You don't have to speak to him.. He can't speak English...)
A Kumon calendar. Advertising my Kumon Education Centre.Helping me remember dates.
Monthly prayer intentions, Crusade of Mary the Immaculate.
And another holy card..Our Lady of Perpetual Help..love the icon..again...feeding my icon fetish.
Billy Blanks' ( Taebo) Ten Words of Wisdom. Motivation. Support. Reminders..Where I am today is where my mind put me...Every day above ground is a blessed day....
Our parish's weekly bulletin.
And various magnets.
What does this say about me? That I am the primary fridge strewer in this house. And that I use my fridge to strew faith and practical stuff and to show those gifts/postcards.....
What is your fridge culture?>