Sunday, October 28, 2007

We usually pick our pumpkins for Halloween from any of a number of pick-your-own fields near us. We almost didn't stop at this one because the pumpkins looked so small from the road. Up close we saw they were very nice sizes.

And they were all so lovely. Big, round, firm, nice stems..... It was so hard to decide.....
So we ended up with FIVE lovely round pumpkins. Now that's going to be a lot of carving. My dear husband has already cleaned out all the insides.....

Cruella DeVille

Cruella Deville
Cruella Deville
If she doesn't scare you, No evil thing will.
To see her is to take a sudden chill.
Cruella, Cruella
She's like a spider waiting for the kill.
Cruella Cruella Deville.

At first you think Cruella is a devil,
But after time has worn away the shock, you come to realize you've seen her kind of eyes watching you from underneath a rock.
This vampire bat, this inhuman beast,
She ought to be locked up and never released.
The world was such a wholesome place until...
Cruella, Cruella Deville.

Here she is, with her meanest Cruella expression......:-)

Friday, October 26, 2007

Busy Day

Today I substitute taught 7th and 8th graders algebra and science. Then came home to get my youngest ready for a Halloween party. She dressed as Cruella DeVille, complete with black and white washable hair dye, full length fur coat with polka dot scarf (white with black spots, of course) and small dalmation key chain hanging from her belt. It was too funny.

Then we went into high gear picking up and cleaning the house since Mike was coming home with two friends who would spend the night. I love it when I have a deadline to get my house in order. (That's the only time it happens :-) After cleaning, it was on to the dinner which we were going to have after they arrived. Surprisingly, everything went pretty smoothly. Dinner was simple but nice and I think Mike's friends felt welcome. Now I'm ready for bed....

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Today is a double birthday in our house. My son John was born on my husband's 36th birthday. The best birthday present he ever received, as he says. My husband is an electrical engineer and he works very hard for us. How grateful I am to be married to a man who is open to life and committed to his family.

I have all the things I need for dinner, just made the fruit salad, and have the ice cream cake in the freezer. All set.

Johnny is our pianist. The piano man, as we sometimes call him. I've written about his gifts before. He is the only baby of mine who actually asked me to "shhhh" when I sang lullabies to him. Lol. I think he was born with perfect pitch. He started begging for piano lessons at age three. At four we let him start. Then there was no stopping him.
So Happy Birthday, guys. Love you both lots!!!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

This little tiny picture of my son Jim running with the ball was the best I could post tonight. He's number 23. Oh! I was just able to post another. Sometimes I just hate computers!! They are soooo frustrating. The football season is over and Jim was moved up to varsity. That's the good news and the bad news. Those guys are BIG. He's going to start weight training soon. We'll see how things go.... Anyway, I'm thanking God for a safe season.

Friday, October 19, 2007

The following is a handout we received on our retreat with Sue Cummins. We actually went to our rooms and meditated on Scripture for an hour right after the talk. It was good. We could try out what we were learning.
1. Find a place where you won't be distracted. Make sure that you have a Bible, pen and notebook.
2. Ask the Lord to bless your time of meditation.
3. Pick a scripture from the meditation sheet. Don't take a lot of time reading all of the scriptures listed. Ask the Lord to guide you, decide on the type of meditation you want to do and pick an appropriate scripture.
4. Pray and ask the Lord for the special grace you are seeking.
5. Begin to prayerfully read the scripture. You can read all of the verses or stop at any point that you feel moved to stop.
6. Go back and read over the passage again. Repeat phrases out loud. (Don't distract others.) Let the Holy Spirit touch you and let the Lord speak to you. If the scripture is a story from the gospels or some other story, visualize the scene. Imagine the smells and sounds. Try to visualize where you might be in the scene.
7. Speak freely with the Lord about what you are thinking and feeling. Ask him again for the grace that you are seeking. If you feel a desire to cry, do so. lf you experience restlessness or fear, speak to the Lord about it. If you get distracted and your mind begins to wander away from the Lord, return to the scripture and read some more verses.
8. At the end of the .hour, write in your notebook all that you experienced during the meditation and anything that the Lord seemed to be saying to you. (Don't write during the meditation but rather wait until the last ten or fifteen minutes of the hour to write.)
9. Note anything that you want to consider in the future in regards to decisions, changes etc., but don't make any major decisions or promises to the Lord at the time of the meditation.
10. End the hour of meditation with a prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord. "

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Words of wisdom from my retreat

The women's retreat for my parish was led by Sue Cummins and the theme was "Delighting in God's Word." Sue provided the following in a handout. I wish I could reference it further. (I don't know if it's from something else she has written or taken from somewhere else. She did say that her perspective on the topic was from Saint Ignatius Loyola. So....


St. Ignatius of Loy-ola says in his Spiritual Exercises that God is "laboring to love us." Our part is to open our hearts and allow his love to enter in. How do you open your heart? This simple four-step movement in prayer is a helpful description of how you can open your heart and let God do his loving work.

Acknowledge ~ First, acknowledge what is stirring in your heart. Observe whatever memory, thought, or feeling is strongest in your heart in this moment. Call it by name in your prayer before God.

Relate ~ Relate that thought, memory, or feeling to God. You are sitting before God in prayer. Don't pretend that you are in this alone. Speak to the Lord from your heart in a way that acknowledges his active presence.

Receive ~ The Lord is laboring to love you in this moment. But love comes to us in different ways depending on what we are presently experiencing. Receive the love that the Lord is now giving you in the midst of this memory, thought, or feeling.

Respond ~ Now that you have tasted the Lord's love anew, respond to that love. Perhaps speak a word of thanks to God or ask his help to act from that love. Respond in such a way to God's love that you bring his love with you from your time of prayer. "

I love this.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Meditating on Scripture

The focus of my retreat was meditating on Scripture. It was really wonderful. We heard so much practical advice on how to do it and then were given the chance to go back to our rooms and try it for an hour. After the hour we came back to our meeting room and several people would share how their hour went. This was so helpful. It made the whole experience of Scripture meditation seem very do-able. After all, we had just done it! I will share more about the details in the next few days. And I did pray for all the readers of this blog.

Right now I'm pretty tired, having subbed all day today for "Daniel" who sometimes comments on this blog :-) But the kids were great. No problems. A full day of teaching is just pretty tiring. I don't know how teachers do it every day for nine months. And they need to write the lesson plans too and correct the papers! I just show up and follow directions. You have a great class, Daniel.

Friday, October 12, 2007


I'm going on my parish's Women's Retreat this weekend so I probably won't be posting again before Monday. I'll pray for all of you and please say a prayer for me, if you think of it. God bless!!! (Fall is here in Michigan. It's getting really chilly!)

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Queenship of Mary established today

On October 11, 1954 Pope Pius XII instituted the feast of the queenship of Mary......

"51. By this Encyclical Letter We are instituting a feast so that all may recognize more clearly and venerate more devoutly the merciful and maternal sway of the Mother of God. We are convinced that this feast will help to preserve, strengthen and prolong that peace among nations which daily is almost destroyed by recurring crises. Is she not a rainbow in the clouds reaching towards God, the pledge of a covenant of peace?[62] "Look upon the rainbow, and bless Him that made it; surely it is beautiful in its brightness. It encompasses the heaven about with the circle of its glory, the hands of the Most High have displayed it."[63] Whoever, therefore, reverences the Queen of heaven and earth--and let no one consider himself exempt from this tribute of a grateful and loving soul--let him invoke the most effective of Queens, the Mediatrix of peace; let him respect and preserve peace, which is not wickedness unpunished nor freedom without restraint, but a well-ordered harmony under the rule of the will of God; to its safeguarding and growth the gentle urgings and commands of the Virgin Mary impel us.
52. Earnestly desiring that the Queen and Mother of Christendom may hear these Our prayers, and by her peace make happy a world shaken by hate, and may, after this exile show unto us all Jesus, Who will be our eternal peace and joy, to you, Venerable Brothers, and to your flocks, as a promise of God's divine help and a pledge of Our love, from Our heart We impart the Apostolic Benediction.
53. Given at Rome, from St. Peter's, on the feast of the Maternity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the eleventh day of October, 1954, in the sixteenth year of our Pontificate."

Something much less significant also happened on Oct. 11, 1954. I was born. :-)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Fundraising Requests

What do you do when an organization sends you something along with a fundraising request. I'm thinking specifically of Catholic organizations that, for example, send you a rosary with a request for a donation. I used to just send them a small donation. But lately it's been happening much more frequently. One organization told me the object that had sent had been blessed and would I please let them know that it arrived safely. I finally sent them a small donation and now they have sent a rosary with another request for a donation. I'm sure these are wonderful organizations and they have found that these methods help them bring in more money. I don't want to throw a sacramental away, of course! But I also don't feel like sending money to every group that sends me a rosary, which has become a lot. I'm wondering if it's just my bad attitude that makes me feel a little manipulated by these requests.

Saturday, October 06, 2007


I worked for hours at the concession stand at my son's high school homecoming football game. It was sooo busy. We were working non-stop. It was 80 some degrees-- uncomfortably hot.

We had trouble keeping the drinks cold since we needed more ice and it was so hot. I was amazed at how unpleasant some people were about the drinks not being cold enough. This was a little concession stand at a Catholic high school football game. Some were hostile. Others sarcastic. But most people were very understanding and some didn't care at all. They just wanted something wet. I guess the others were probably irritable from the heat.

Anyway....I'm sooo tired. I'm going to bed.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

The Football Cake

I thought I had everything under control. (That was my first mistake.) I had the cake all ready to go, prepared the pan exactly as they suggested, made the batter, poured it in....and guess what? My oven would not heat up!! It got to about 200 degrees and stayed there for about 45 minutes. I didn't know what to do. Finally, called my friend Pat who very generously allowed me to come over to use her oven, even though she wasn't going to be there! We had a nice family birthday party and Jim did like the "football cake."

My blog is not allowing me to post pictures anymore. It's so weird. I also can't link to anything and I can't change the font or color. Could it be a virus?

Happy Feast of Saint Francis!!!

Jim just came by and showed me I was looking at the template and not the compose tab. NOW I can post a picture. So, here is Jim with his football cake. :-)

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Happy Birthday to Jim!!!

Today is my son Jim's birthday!

What a week he has had. On Monday, with the score tied 0 to 0, and a minute and a half left in the game, Jim ran 78 yards for a touchdown!!! 78 yards!!! Ukok, that's a LOT of yards. Each team gets four tries to get the ball down the field 10 yards. We were so happy for him. He won the game for his team. The varsity players carried him off the field on their shoulders. And this from a guy who never played more than one or two plays per game last year. He is so fast. If he gets moving, hardly anyone can catch him. So, there's my maternal bragging moment.

Happy Birthday, Jim!!! We're celebrating tomorrow because he had practice and then a CCD class he's helping with almost right after tonight. Guess what I found? A Wilton cake pan shaped like a football. I'm going to surprise him with the football cake tomorrow. Made the girls promise not to tell....

Monday, October 01, 2007

Strep Throat

My daughter came home from school on Thursday complaining of a sore throat and nausea. She threw up several times after we got home and spent Friday with more of the same. Her tummy was what really bothered her. On Saturday morning I asked if her throat still hurt and she said yes, but not as badly as before. Thinking I was probably wasting our time I took her in for a throat swab. It was strep!! I was so glad I went in. I knew that strep could cause an upset stomach (as well as a headache) but I thought it would at least be accompanied by an awful sore throat, not just a moderate one. Anyway, good news was she was practically fine after 24 hours. She was out of bed, appetite back, and by today she was 100%. What a relief.
I hear there's a lot of strep going around here.... Everybody, stay well.