The other day I was saying to our Pastor that it makes me crazy that parents bring the kids to church and give them toys and snacks in an attempt to keep them quiet. When I was a child, even a very small child, I was expected to pay attention to Mass. I expected my children to pay attention to Mass. I never came with toys and snacks.
Today at Easter Mass there was a man who came with 4 children who I'd never seen before. There were no snacks and no toys and he expected them to pay attention, kneel, stand and sit at the appropriate times. It was refreshing to see. The little boy had to be talked to several times. He must be ADD or something. When going up to Communion he would walk intentionally into people going the other way. I gently put my hands on his shoulders and guided him back into line. He looked up at me surprised but he was better after that. I thought to myself, that's exactly the way it was when I was a child with adults in our congregation. I think when another adult says something, it makes more of an impact. Like they say it takes a village to raise a child.
They were really a lovely family and the Dad was doing a good job alone without a Mom to help. The children were very reverent when they went to Communion (2 were too young for communion & received blessings). On the way to Communion one of the older girls said to me, ' you have a pretty singing voice.' I always say, if you sing at church you will get a good singing voice too. LOL Happy Easter
Last night went with our High School Church Youth Group to the Archdiocese of Baltimore Chrism Mass at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen The Chrism Mass serves 2 purposes; 1) to bless the 3 oils:
The Oil of Catechumens used in Baptism along with water, in the consecration of churches, in the blessing of Altars, in the ordination of priests, and, sometimes, in the crowning of Catholic kings and queens.
The Holy Chrism used in Confirmation, Baptism, in the consecration of a Bishop, the consecration of a various things such as churches, chalices, patens, and bells.
The Oil of the Sick which is used in anointing the sick & in last rights.
2) for the Priest to reaffirm their commitment to God and the church.
The church is always packed the faithful representing a good part of the 153 parishes in the Archdiocese. Part of the Mass is the procession in with all the Priests from the Archdiocese, the Bishops, the Archbishop, the Deacons and Seminarians. It is quite impressive and it's cute how the Priests look around the pews to look for their "sheep". And also how the "sheep" look for their "shepherd" waving, smiling and sometimes reaching out to shake their hand or to hug them. I always look forward to seeing Priests who have served our Parish over the years and have moved on to other assignments. This was an especially joyful year. We have a new Pope (Francis) and a new Archbishop (Lori). And last night was the first Chrism Mass for each of them. The Mass was beautiful. The Bible readings were in English and Spanish. Many parts of the Mass were sung in Latin. As I was singing the Pater Noster (Our Father in Latin), I was taken back to when I was in Rome at the Vatican where we also sang it...all the people from many countries..The Universal Church. And the sentimental fool that I am, my heart was touched thinking about how many many generations of my family did the same and how this Mass follows the traditions of the early church. I could almost see one of my ancestors in the catacombs participating in the Mass. It makes me feel so connected to Jesus and the Apostles and so thankful for my Church and the men who heard their calling from God and said yes to the Priesthood. On the back of our program was a quote from Blessed John Paul II, "The priestly vocation is essentially a call to holiness, in the form that derives from the Sacrament of Holy Orders. Holiness is intimacy with God, it is the imitation of Christ, poor, chase and humble. It is unserved love for souls an self-giving to their true good. It is love for the Church which is holy and wants us to be holy, because such is the mission that Christ has entrusted to it. Each of you must be holy also in order to help your brothers and sisters pursue their vocation to holiness." Have a Blessed Holy Week!
So my grandson's doctor said he was overweight and he should stay away from fattening food and sugar and be more active. We have a Family Game Night once a month at my house and both my kids and their families come. Tonight is one of those nights. My grandson remarked last night that he looks forward to the game night because of all the snack food I have.
I told him I'd have health things for him to eat and he said he would really miss the chips and dip. So it got me thinking. I had bought 2 microwave chip makers some time ago but hadn't really used them so I decided to make some apple chips. Of course, I forgot how to do it so I found a video online to refresh my memory.
First I used my pampered chef slicer. to slice up some thin slices. I set it to number 1.
Then I put them on paper towels and pressed out the extra moisture.
Next I microwaved them for 8 minutes and 15 seconds (sometimes a little longer if they were thicker slices.
They turned out pretty good and tasty I might add.
Spring is on it's way and so is Easter. Things that come to mind resurrection and new life, flowers, green, warm rays of the sun.
I was thinking the other day we had a mild winter and I was hoping for that early Spring that the Groundhog said we'd get but wait, the weather man says we are having a snow storm tomorrow....well that puts a crimp in things
Speaking of new life and resurrection I had this dream the other night. I was at some painting seminar and was going to bed. We had bunks (for some strange reason) in the hotel. I climbed in the bottom bunk and I saw my Mom's face (she passed away on Dec 28, 2012).
She was saying that she could see her Mother (my Grandmother) and she was surrounded by colorful radiant light. That doesn't surprise me because Busha was faithful to the Lord. Well anyway, I remember saying to Mom, "Mom, I REALLY don't want to see dead people." and I up and left the bunk bed...strange dream. Hope if she was coming to me in the dream that I didn't hurt her feelings. I wonder if you get hurt feelings in the afterlife?
This is my pup Luigi. He is a 5 month old Cockapoo.
Some times I wonder what he's thinking or what he thinks he is. Luigi's favorite snack is cat poop. He likes to play with the cats toys over his toys if given a choice. He loves car rides but vomits when I take him in the car.
Luigi loves to go outside but doesn't like to go out alone. He will eat only if you are close by otherwise he will bring his dish to your feet. The typical Italian Male...he doesn't like to eat or be alone. I can say that because I am 2nd Generation Italian American so I know a few Italian males!
Luigi doesn't like to get brushed, that is, unless you give him a treat. He will sit still as can be if he's munching on a Pupperoni..
He is the strangest little dog but I love him so much and I wonder how I could have lived for all these years without him and his comical escapades.
Over the past year, I have been volunteering for both Kindergarten and 1st Grade at my Grandson's school. Today in the Kindergarten something happened that touched my heart and I'd like to share.
Every day the teacher pulls the name for a Mystery Student. She picks a name in the morning and no one else knows who it is until later in the day. They all want to be good so when she calls the name they get the award which is a little toy that sits on their shoulder that designates them as the Mystery Student. The little boy chosen today from time to time has problems staying focused and being good. He's come a long way since the beginning of the year but he still needs a little work.
Well today when the teacher said who it was, not only he was excited to be chosen but the whole class was as well. All the kindergartners were coming up and hugging him and congratulating him. It was so sweet...it touched my heart. These special moments are the reason I volunteer.
So I'm back from my trip to Florida to visit my cousin Anna (Annie to me). It was a great visit. She and her husband are clammers on the Gulf. They have a great set up and a retiree of the MD Department of Natural Resources, I was anxious to see their operation.
The weather wasn't cooperating though. It was blowing the 2 days we were to go out and I couldn't take my 85 year old father on that boat. I'd have been okay but I was worried about him slipping on the boat in the blowing spray. We did get to see the workshop where they repair and assemble the nets and the boat. Mike explained the process to me and they even sent a text message to me with a video showing some of their on water work.
Dad loves clams and each night he was able to have fresh clams. He was happy as a clam! LOL Annie and Mike live off the land and the sea. One night we had a ham from a wild pig they raised, fresh clams they harvested that day and greens from their garden. It was awesome.
One of the nights we went to dinner at the Island Room at Cedar Key which is owned by their friends Gina and Peter Stefani. It was beautiful. The food was awesome and the service was as well. I had the Linguini Alle Vongole which is Cedar Key Littleneck clams sauteed in wine, olive oil, garlic and fresh herbs. . And I have got to tell you, the linguini was homemade & to die for! If you are ever in that neck of the woods, check it out. http://www.islandroom.com/
Dad was ready to move down there. He loved the area and the people (especially Annie & Mike-Mike was so good with him). It did him good to be away. Over the past couple years as my mother's health declined, she didn't want to travel anymore. He is a very social person and was so excited to be going to see Annie. Our next trip? May to see my cousins, Cece, Toots & Liz in Virginia Beach. Stay tuned for our adventures!.
Annie (L) and Me (R). I always stood out with my Italian Cousins.
My cousin Annie and I were so close when we were young. She was the little sister I never had but always wanted. As she got older she moved away and we had not seen each other in years.
Then one day she found me on the internet from my Fotki photo web page. I had a bunch of old family photos in it. We would occasionally email each other. Then came Facebook and it all changed. Suddenly we could share photos and talk in real time. We found our other cousins and could talk with them and play games together.
We had a cousin reunion and spent some time talking and sharing old stories and laughs.
It was wonderful.
But the most wonderful thing is that tomorrow, Dad and I are flying down to Cedar Key Florida to spend 5 days with her and her husband. It will be so good to spend quality time with my little sister/cousin.
Dad needs this trip (and me too). He has been away from his family for quite a while. Mom got more and more antisocial as she aged and had health problems and she never wanted to go anywhere...no trips locally, let alone out of state. Dad is so excited. Annie has planned an awesome couple of days for us. But aside from fishing, clamming and seafood, the best part of this is spending time with her.
....since my Mom passed away. Sometimes I find myself thinking she's still here. I think I have to talk to Mom. But I can't call.
Shopping today there was a lady with the same color hair and the same hairdo. I did a double take. She didn't look like Mom but she reminded me of her. I stared. I hope she wasn't offended.
Sometimes I get a whiff of cigarette smoke and I think she's here but she's not and there's no one around.
Two days ago it was my parents 63rd Wedding Anniversary. I don't think Dad remembered. He was always bad at remembering that date. This year I was thinking it's a good thing he didn't. Or at least he didn't say he did. I hope Mom didn't mind too much.
A Prayer for a Deceased Mother
O God, who hast commanded us to honor our father and our mother; in Thy mercy have pity on the soul of my mother, and forgive her her trespasses; and make me to see her again in the joy of everlasting brightness. Through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Well after waiting for 8 weeks, my fur baby came home today...finally! We picked him up from the breeder, Sunshine Acres Cockapoos.
Luigi was a very good boy. He took right to the leash and he even sat nicely in his booster seat.
It must have been his first time on grass because when we put him down, he ran to the sidewalk. We had to convince him that grass was a good thing. But once he got the hang of it, he loved it. Especially the fallen leaves. I'm sure he thought God put those there just for him to play with. He's getting the hang of sit as well. By the time I get the trainer here, I might already have him trained! He's so smart (but then again, isn't everyone's child the smartest in the world?)!
It took 6 hours before he finally went to pee. I was a nervous wreck. I even emailed the breeder. But once he got the hang of it, the next time I took him out he went right away, thankfully. Glenn and I went out for a quick errand while he was asleep. I had put him in the crate and gently closed it. When we came back he was just sitting in there but he jumped up like "where did you people go?"
I wanted a dog that would be a family dog but I'm thinking that he's going to be attached to me. He follows me around like a baby chick and if he falls asleep, it's right by my side. I keep putting him on Glenn's lap but he won't stay there.
He is such a well behaved, well tempered dog. I couldn't ask for a more perfect one. And he was one of the best decisions of my life.
Got up early this morning and high tailed it up to the polling place. It wasn't bad, just an hour wait. I generally wait until mid day when there are no lines but I had my grandson with me who wanted to go out for breakfast. I had brought a big ole toosie-pop with me to keep him busy and it lasted him almost to the end of the line! LOL
We used the wait to talk about elections, how people in other countries don't get this opportunity, how important voting is and why we should vote. The election judge gave him a sticker too!
I'd like to take a moment to remember the people who sacrificed their lives & serve in the military to give us this right. I heard a man say on TV today that voting is your duty to your country. I never thought of it that way. I always vote even in primaries and some time during that time, I always think about our men & women in uniform....God Bless America.
So remember this plate of the Holy Family that I blogged about a while ago. I finally finished it. The photo on the left shows it in "first fire". That is the first application of color. Notice how light it is.
Believe it or not it took me 10 fires in the kiln. Painting on china requires building up the color and firing in the kiln in between.
It took that many fires to get the depth of color in the background. I am pretty happy with how it turned out. It looks much better in person. It's a very large plate...10 inches in diameter. I still think the Blessed Mother could use a little more work on the face but for now I'm finished. At least I think so.
But you never know, I might later go back and put some kind of other detail on the edge. Maybe some enamel or luster...not sure.
Ewuuuuu.....What is that smell? I went outside today to put away the trash cans and it smelled like something died out there. First I thought it was the trash cans but no that wasn't it.
I have looked all over the front yard but I can't find the source of that smell. I'm hoping whatever died gets eaten by some scavenger but in the meantime that terrible smell is staying with me. PU!
On a less stinky note, I had a great day today. A friend and fellow Iconographer, Rebecca LaChance drove down from Frederick. We had a nice morning sharing some painting techniques. Then we went to Moulin de Paris...which defines itself as a Euro Asian bistro....Love that place.
to Artscape in Baltimore was fun. Artscape is one of the largest free art shows/festivals in the country. I have always wanted to go but it seems like every time there would be one thing or another which prevented me from going there.
This year I went with my daughter, Jackie (on the left) and her friend Sara (right).
I don't know how many blocks they had closed off in town but it was pretty large. It is around the area of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA). There was the usual (and some unusual) food vendors and lots of artisans selling their wares mostly geared to the young hip crowd. I loved lots of it but just couldn't figure out where I'd put it. But it was fun to check it all out.
There was a section, the theme was carnival.The MiCA kids had all kinds of crazy interactive art there. I wish I had more time to check it all out. There were several stages of live performances. Jackie and Sara wanted to see Egg Babies Orchestra. They were mostly a cover band..they did a set of songs all with the theme Na Na Na Na Na Na....I never realized how many songs had that in them. They were very good. Then there were on street music men like the crazy guy on the left. He was too cute for words. I loved the stage for the Rock Opera ...it was so cool.
But I think my favorite part were the Art Cars. Cars with all kinds of things attached to them. Each one had a theme. This was my favorite one.
What a great afternoon escape.......I look forward to next year.
Happy Paint Party Friday....Most Tuesday nights I go to a decorative painting class. It's taught by my friend Kathy Anthony of Beyond Brushstrokes.
It's always fun to paint with friends. This past month we were painting this beautiful stroke work design.
I'm not crazy about stroke work but it is good practice. It's one of those things that I make myself do...like landscapes I suck at them but I make myself paint them from time to time.
The other's painted it on a very large tray. For some time I have had this green bowl with the wood top and have wanted to paint something on it. So when this project came up I just decided to do it on it. It made it a little more challenging because that meant the design was much smaller than it was designed to be but it worked out okay.
And here is the finished product!
On another topic...here's LeeLu. The other day I was sitting in my sun room with my phone and she kept wanting to "use" the phone so I turned on the camera and took a photo of her. Can you hear her say cheese?
It's my intention to blog about things I'm working on or have for sale or to feature some of the talented people that I've come across either on Facebook, Twitter, or Etsy. Sometimes I just might blog about something that is just of interest to me so grab a cup of coffee and enjoy the posts. You might even occasionally come across a blog give away!