Quick Update for Holy Thursday

Head over to Adeye’s blog and see this list of orphans who urgently need to be adopted!  Some are at risk of aging out, others need medical care which can’t be provided where they currently live.  Maybe you (like me) can’t adopt, but can you share this list?  Can you say a prayer for them today?

And don’t forget about my favorite angels, Madison & Mason.

Because…

… I have a sinus infection that has turned me into a sneezing, coughing zombie and I haven’t updated in forever, I’m responding to “Answer Me This!” from Kendra at Catholic All Year.

1. What time do you prefer to go to Mass?  During the school year, I go to the big Sunday AM Mass at my church because I’m in the choir.  When school isn’t in session, the choir doesn’t meet, and so I go to Saturday evening Mass.  I really like the 7 AM Masses though – I’ve always been an early bird and Masses at that hour tend to be very reverent and peaceful.

2. Would you rather be too hot or too cold?   Too cold.  If you’re too cold, you can always put on more clothes to warm up.  There is however, a limit to how much you can take off if you’re too warm…

3. How many brothers and/or sisters do you have?  One younger sister.

4. If you were faced with a boggart, what would it turn into?  Hold that thought while I Google what a boggart is.  (No, I didn’t read the Harry Potter books.  Childless adults who read kids’ books are creepy as hell.)  It would probably turn into a gigantic tightrope stretched over the Grand Canyon, which I now have to walk across.

5. Barbie: thumbs up or thumbs down?  Thumbs up.  

6. If someone asked you to give them a random piece of advice, what would you say?   I’d say that if you own dry-clean-only clothes, using Dryel is a lot cheaper and less time-consuming than going to a regular dry cleaner.   Thirty minutes in your dryer and done!

7 Quick Takes Friday – Is it Palm Sunday Yet?

1.Because I’m now Madison and Mason‘s Guardian Angel, they will always be take #1. Due to her age, Madison’s ONLY chance at a family is to be adopted with Mason!  If you’d like to adopt them, let me know and I will have a matching fund drive on my blog as I did for Larisa.

Mason must think he's a ladies' man.

Mason must think he’s a ladies’ man.

Madison is lovely.

2. Do you know a family who could adopt these kids?  Maybe you do and you don’t realize it yet!  Spread the word – these kids can’t get adopted if nobody knows they exist!

3.  The title of this post refers to the fact that I have been exceedingly busy planning a big meeting, and by Palm Sunday it’ll be over!   Between all the stuff I’ve had to do for meeting planning, keeping our house in some semblance of order (since DH has been working ~80 hours a week to meet a deadline of his own) and oh yeah, my regular job, it’s been a busy few weeks.

4. The other reason I’m looking forward to Palm Sunday is that it coincides with the last frost date where I live!   I have a few days off that week – looking forward to getting my tomatoes and peppers in!

5.  And yes, I am still singing in the choir!  It’s hard to keep up with this when the rest of life is nuts, but going to choir practice keeps me focused on God and fellowship with the other choristers for a few hours, and that’s very vital.

6.  I said”very vital” in the take above, which makes me thing of the Run-DMC song “It’s Tricky,” and I almost made that this week’s song.  And while it is very vital (albeit tricky) to rock a rhyme on time, it’s still Lent, which means…

7.  We need a hymn!  This week’s hymn is “There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy.”

For more Quick Takes from Jen and others, visit Conversion Diary!

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, pray for orphans!

7 Quick Takes Friday – Goal Update!

1.Because I’m now Madison and Mason‘s Guardian Angel, they will always be take #1. Due to her age, Madison’s ONLY chance at a family is to be adopted with Mason!  If you’d like to adopt them, let me know and I will have a matching fund drive on my blog as I did for Larisa.

Mason must think he's a ladies' man.

Mason must think he’s a ladies’ man.

Madison is lovely.

2. Do you know a family who could adopt these kids?  Maybe you do and you don’t realize it yet!  Spread the word – these kids can’t get adopted if nobody knows they exist!

3.  I have an update on one of my 2014 goals!  It’s a small one, but appropriate for Lent:  I cleaned the downstairs bathroom!

Before:

IMG_0214 

And after:IMG_0218 IMG_0219

Baking soda and vinegar are miracle cures for a disgusting tub, and Target has never let me down on bathroom accessories!

4.  As for my other 2014 goals:  about 16% of the way to my walking goal (thank you MapMyWalk.com) and moving has been tabled until spring ends.

5.  On a completely unrelated note, Mercer beat Duke.  I hate Duke, and when they lost I was like:happy_happy_joy_joy_xd_by_angelyoshi119-d5e12yk

6.  On yet another unrelated note, how would you explain Stations of the Cross to somebody who’s never been?  I’ve been trying to go every Friday during Lent, but never got round to explaining it to DH, partly because I’m just like, “Uh… we walk around the church… and sing Stabat Mater… and feel bad and stuff?”

7.  It’s Lent and it’s take #7, so we need a hymn.  This week’s hymn is “The Glory of Those 40 Days.”

For more Quick Takes from Jen and others, visit Conversion Diary!

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, pray for orphans!

Fred Phelps

By now, I’m sure you’ve all heard that Fred Phelps, pastor of the funeral picketing Westboro Baptist Church, has passed away.  I’ve had the displeasure of seeing Fred and his crew in person on more than one occasion.  They were quite a sight, a sight that I didn’t want to see but forced myself to behold because I don’t believe in cowardice.

I couldn’t stand Fred or his family, thought they were a blight upon the land and frequently wished that they’d be exiled to a desert island or abducted by space aliens.  And yet, when I heard that Fred was dying, I only felt one thing:

Sorrow.

Fred Phelps had God-given talents and he had eighty-four years on this planet in which to use them.  Imagine what a man with his gift for public speaking and rabble-rousing could have done… and compare it to what he did do.

What a waste of a life.

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

7 Quick Takes Friday – Almsgiving

1.Because I’m now Madison and Mason‘s Guardian Angel, they will always be take #1. Due to her age, Madison’s ONLY chance at a family is to be adopted with Mason!  If you’d like to adopt them, let me know and I will have a matching fund drive on my blog as I did for Larisa.

Mason must think he's a ladies' man.

Mason must think he’s a ladies’ man.

Madison is lovely.

2. Do you know a family who could adopt these kids?  Maybe you do and you don’t realize it yet!  Spread the word – these kids can’t get adopted if nobody knows they exist!

3. This week’s (belated) takes are all about almsgiving.  First up are Kiva and Unbound!  I’ve talked about Unbound (formerly CFCA) here and here.  Kiva is a site that allows people to contribute to microfinance loans for entrepreneurs in developing countries.  A microfinance organization meets with  the entrepreneur, get his/her story and take photos of the entrepreneur and the business.  The lending partner disburses the loan, and then it’s posted to Kiva, where people like us can help fund the loan.  You can lend as little as $25 at a time.  When a loan is funded, the money is given back to the field partner to replenish what they’ve loaned to the borrower.  Over time, the borrower pays back the loan, which means you get your money back, which you can then turn around and loan to somebody else.  Self-sufficiency is very important to me, and I love that both of these organizations give people the tools to be more self-sufficient.

4.  Our next contestants are Nothing But Nets and Malaria No More.  Both of these organizations are committed to eradicating malaria.  Nothing But Nets, as the name implies, does nothing but provide insecticide treated mosquito nets for people to hang over their beds (most malaria transmission occurs at night).  Malaria No More provides nets as well as treatments and rapid diagnostic tests.

5.  Next up we have We Care Solar and the Catholic Medical Mission Board Sporadic electricity services are a huge difficulty for maternity hospitals in Africa; without electricity, it becomes impossible to contact doctors about an emergency, keep blood supplies fresh, or even see what in tarnation you’re doing.  We Care Solar provides Solar Suitcases – a photovoltaic system that powers LED lights, charges phones and has rechargeable LED headlamps.  CMMB has provided medical care to the poor for over 100 years.  It strives to create sustainable health systems in developing countries, build supply chain capacity, and train local practitioners.

6.  Finally, we have Sight Learning!  Sight Learning takes donations of old eyeglasses and provides them to needy students.  Donate your old glasses and help some kid use their God-given talents!

7.  It’s Lent and it’s take #7, so we need a hymn.  This week’s hymn is the Salve Regina Solemn Tone.


For more Quick Takes from Jen and others, visit Conversion Diary!

St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, pray for orphans!

7 in 7 – Pray for Peace

In light of the news coming out of Ukraine today, I thought it would be a good time to post my all-time favorite prayer.  Please take a few moments to say it with me and remember the people in Ukraine.

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Where there is hatred, let me sow love.

Where there is error, truth.

Where there is doubt, faith.

Where there is despair, hope.

Where there is darkness, light.

Where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek

To be consoled as to console;

To be understood as to understand;

To be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive;

It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

This prayer has been widely – and wrongly – attributed to St. Francis of Assisi.  In reality, it first appeared in the French publication La Clochette in 1912.  It was a favorite of Mother Teresa’s, who included it in the daily prayers of the Missionaries of Charity.