Monday, April 30, 2007

4 Year Old Logic :o)




A friend related this story to me....


I took my daughter & her little brother to the park today. There my daughter (4) met her friend (5) and he friend's smaller sister (2). Her friend's mom is expecting again and had her 20 week scan yesterday. So naturally we were inquiring and they are having another girl.

My daughter asked her friend, "Didn't you want to have a baby brother? Did you not pray hard enough? Why did God send you a girl?".

Her friend: "There was nothing wrong with my praying".

My daughter: "Oh" [thought for a minute] and then said "God must be out of boys at the moment - you know, that happens" :)).

Tonight my daughter was saying her night prayers and adds in a real casual voice: "I was told you might be out of boys, God. If you have any spare girls, please send me one!".

Saturday, April 28, 2007

The Pleasure of Being a Mom

Feast of Saint Louis Marie de Monfort


OK, this is the first time I have heard this one....

One morning recently, King Peter was ignoring me, & did not do what I asked. When I didn't ignore his ignoring, & enforced what I said, he did it but was mouthy. So I sent him to his room. While going up the stairs, all the while still being mouthy, he said "You are doing this just to give yourself pleasure!" LOL! I had to cover up my laughter lest he think I got pleasure from it!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

BFF?????

Feast of Our Lady of Good Counsel

So, Queen Lucy & I are looking at t-shirts at one of the 'mart' stores. One of them was a cute pink shirt with "BFF" on the front. I knew it was an abbreviation of some sort, and probably part of the text-message generation, but did not know what it meant.

Queen Lucy pipes up, "Best Friends Forever." DUH! I looked at her with surprise (meanwhile, thanking God it meant something nice).

(Disclaimer - this is not the shirt. The socially inept do not carry their cameras everywhere they go. But if you like it, you can find it here.)

She does not do instant messaging on the computer, in fact, she does not do the Internet or email, nor does she have a cell phone. And to make matter worse - we do not have cable television or a "dish". GASP!

I asked her, "How did you know that? I thought I kept you safe & secure in the cave we live in!"

I guess I need to do a thorough inspection of our cave, filling in any gaps, because we all know homeschool children are socially inept & should not know such things.

Monday, April 23, 2007

My Godson's Traditional Latin Baptism

Feast of Saint George


I have been remiss in posting about my adorable Godson. His baptism was last month. It was done in the Traditional Latin Rite. This was my first traditional baptism; it was so beautiful and full of meaning - so much more than the "modern" version.


Here we are, Father, moi, my Godson, and his parents. (He is wearing the same baptismal gown my son wore at his baptism.)



Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Popcorn King & the Chilidog Queen & a Yard Sale

Feast of Saint Leonidas of Alexandria


This past Friday found us at the assisted living facility that my Grandma now lives in, Vintage Park (part of Vintage Group). I have written before how wonderful this place is. Well, it continues to impress me!

Last Friday they had a yard sale. They use the funds from this to pay for special activities for the residents. The owner bought two wonderful tents that made the sale so much better (thank you Joe!) However, they were almost without tables. One of the employees was able to find some at the last minute. I had volunteered our services (what a great community service project for my children.). My son got out of bed at 7am the FIRST time I told him to get up (but then he was doing it for his great grandma, and not for his own mother of course). We made it there by 7:30 am.

King Peter was put right to work, hauling things out. I was helping to organize. Queen Lucy went with her Grandmother to the dining room. After awhile I went to check on my darling daughter to make sure she was behaving herself. I find her seated at the table sipping hot chocolate, the center of attention. They have assigned seating in the dining room, and every seat is filled, but there she was, sitting in a chair pulled up to the corner of the table. Grandma told me that the ladies at the table would not settle down until a chair was found for her.

About mid-morning, King Peter was put in charge of the popcorn machine (they were also selling popcorn, chili dogs, and drinks). When Queen Lucy heard of this, she insisted on helping. It was not long until she was in charge of the chilidogs. They took turns at handling the money. I must say, they worked quite well with each other. I will admit, I was not out there the whole time (Grandma was not feeling well so I would keep her company), so if there were any problems, no one told me. When it came time for lunch, they took their lunches in shifts, so that the stand was manned the whole time.

The employees were very attentive to my children, making sure they got plenty to eat. They even got ice cream sundaes in the afternoon (so did I!) The residents were kind to my children, and even got my normally shy daughter to talk to them. The person in charge of the sale thanked my for bringing my children to help. I told her that her allowing my children to help was a far bigger benefit to my children. By her allowing this, she helped me to provide another character building opportunity. It was a wonderful day in many ways! My only complaint – they need coffee with caffeine!!!! (I am not addicted, surely not!!!)


P.S. - We had ribs for lunch the day of the sale. They were melt-in-your-mouth WONDERFUL. Later that afternoon, I saw them preparing the soup for supper that evening - Cream of Broccoli Soup from SCRATCH! No "institutional food" here!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Autism and The Church

Feast of Saint Perfecto

Man, I was all fired up to make a really good blog post on this, when I read it this morning, but now it is at the end of the day and I am not quite so fired up (not sure if I am even warm).

The Arizona Republic wrote an article titled “Church Denies Communion to Autistic Boy”. I remember reading an article years ago about a family who left the Catholic Church because their daughter had Celiac Disease and could not consume gluten. They complained the Church would not allow a communion wafer made from something other than wheat. I remember being outraged at this, because there were no accommodations made for this girl (though I knew it was not a good reason to leave the church). I have since learned the Church was correct in this matter. Canon 924 of the Code of Canon Law states that the host (communion wafer) cannot be made of anything other than wheat and water. If it is made of something else, or another ingredient is added, then it is invalid & does not turn into the Body of Christ. At one time since then, we thought we were facing Celiac Disease. It was suggested to us that the Precious Blood be received. Christ is truly present under both kinds, so really, only one is needed. In the case of this girl and her family, I do not know if this option was offered to her. I can only guess they were not properly catechized in the Faith. (By the way, there is a gluten free host now available, and approved by the Church.)

Regarding the article, I support the Bishop’s position. I am Catholic and I have a child with Autism, so I feel especially qualified to speak on this.

First, let me make this perfectly clear, the Bishop is NOT denying communion to this boy, it’s just that he cannot approve the method the boy receives communion.

The article states that the boy does not swallow the Host because of the texture, yet he can put it in his mouth. I fully understand sensitivities to textures. Obviously the boy has learned to tolerate putting the Host in his mouth, so I think with proper therapy, swallowing will come. Perhaps the parents have tried this, or perhaps they didn’t because they thought they had this other option. I have seen texture sensitivities improve with proper therapy; unconsecrated hosts can be bought & used in therapy.

But there are bigger, more important issues here. I will quote a friend of mine because she said it best

I say, thank heaven there's a bishop out there willing to stand up and enforce the rules which protect the Eucharist from desecration! This is the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of our Savior. If this little boy is unable to consume the host, he is unable to make a communion. Tragic, but factual. A man with no hands cannot become a priest nomatter how badly he wants to. Nobody's fault, just can't be done. We all have to bear the difficulties of our circumstances. It makes me curious as to whether this Bishop denies communion to the publicly pro-abortion politicians in his diocese...
She went on to say
If you begin to allow novelties in the reception of communion, even for excellent reasons--- hygiene, health, whatever----suddenly you are faced with all manner of demands for special considerations; and reverence for and belief in the True Presence erodes, which leads to more abuse, which leads to further disbelief, and on and on in a downward spiral----until we have today's situation, where only a small fraction of Catholics even believe in the True Presence anymore. (And very few of the bishops seem to be among them.) Once we no longer have God at the center of our religion, where are we then?
I don’t blame the family for being angry. Here they are, they thought they had found a method that works. No one says anything about it, then one day someone does say something. This is another example of poor catechism. I, too, have been denied communion. I went to a new church, but the priest refused me communion because I was receiving improperly. I was receiving as I always had, but no one bothered to teach me – to show me my way was irreverent. Once I was properly catechized, I understood, but at first I was not happy about being refused. I thank the priest now for refusing me so that I could find a much more reverent way to receive Our Lord.

It needs to be noted that the diocese has really tried to accommodate the family – from trying different forms of hosts (though they all contain the same two ingredients, there is still a vast difference in how they are made) to offering respite care.

I have had my own struggles within the church, in regards to my child and how others treated him – not with the faith, as I knew I had found the truth. But I think you will find that everywhere. There will always be battles to fight, battles to win, and battles to admit defeat.

This is really rambling – I should have written earlier when I had more energy. I just want to say one more thing. Don’t we tell our children to follow the laws, even if we don’t like one of them? Don’t we teach them to do their best in whatever they do? Is it no different in this situation?

Monday, April 16, 2007

American History & Cheerleading

Feast of Bernadette of Lourdes


According to Wikepedia (and we all know they are THE source for "accurate" information), cheerleading is
an activity that uses organized routines made up of elements from gymnastics, dance or performance stunting/action to cheer on sports teams at games and matches, or to compete at cheerleading competitions.
Well, it is also great for academic reasons.

Queen Lucy was studying for her chapter review test in American History. For once, she took my advice, and read the questions at the end of the chapter first, before reading the chapter the first time. She comes to me complaining about how MANY more terms & definitions this chapter has compared to the previous chapters. Now, I could have played the mean mommy card & ordered her back to her desk to get to work on them, but instead a moment of insanity came over me. (At least, that is what my children called it.)

I began shouting & jumping in the air - cheering my daughter on! I drew on my memories of a few years ago (OK, many years ago) to make up a cheer telling her that I knew she could do it, complete with kicks & jumps. So what if it looked like I was having a seizure, I was cheering my daughter on! Queen Lucy, fearing I would go into another fit of apoplexy, turned on her heel & went back to her desk to do her work. I think she was in shock. Hey! It worked didn't it?!?!?!?

WARNING - Do not attempt this yourself without medical supervision!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

The Easter Bunny - A.K.A. Aunt Diane

Feast of Peter Gonzales

Easter Sunday started by going to Mass. Dinner was to be at my mother's, so after changing clothes, we headed over. We get there & my mother, E-Ma to my children, had NO Easter candy for them! Doesn't she know that is in the job description of a grandmother?!?!?! My own grandmother was also there, G-G to my children, and did not bring candy - but she had a good excuse of being in the hospital just before. I had no candy for them either - time flew by & I was not prepared (which is especially sad because we gave up sugar for Lent & the three of us were really looking forward to some sweets.) I had King Peter call his aunt to see if the Easter Bunny went to her house instead. (She was coming to dinner too, but had not arrived yet.) She asks to talk to me, saying she wished the Easter Bunny had given her some notice.

Dinner is almost ready & Mom & I are wondering where my sister is. Mom calls her. Diane is at the store "looking for that dern Bunny!" HA HA! We figure that is a good excuse for being late. We ended up having to start dinner without her because my grandmother needed to eat. We had just sat down when my sister walks in the door. Hanging out of her pockets are two chocolate bunnies - she said she had left her coat in the car, and when she got in it this morning, she found the candy in her coat's pockets. Of course this thrilled my children - until I told them they had to eat their dinner first! She also came bearing Easter gifts for our grandmother, mother, & I - potted Lilies (Queen Lucy has taken it upon herself to make sure mine gets proper care as I tend to forget about my plants.)

My children & I are the last to leave. I had already taken Grandma home, & my sister was not feeling well due to a pain in her neck (and no, I was not the "pain in the neck" - she had it before she came) so she left early. My children get into the car & what do they find? Two huge Easter baskets filled with the coolest eggs (not the ordinary, cheap plastic eggs) with candy, and a small toy!

Thanks to my sister for tracking down that "dern Bunny!"

Friday, April 13, 2007

Send a Birthday greeting to Papa!

Just a quick note to ask you to send a birthday greeting to the Holy Father. His 80th birthday is April 16th!

A Catholic Comic book

Feast of Saint Hermengild

WOW! I love it when I find old, solidly Catholic literature (at least this appears to be so). I found out about this one from Dust of the Time.

This comic book, Treasure Chest of Fun & Fact, is stored online by The American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives, part of The Catholic University of America.

This is what the site has to say about this comic book -

The Treasure Chest of Fun & Fact was a Catholic comic book published by George A. Pflaum of Dayton, Ohio, and provided to Catholic parochial school students between 1946 and 1972. The digital collection is a project that will include the first eighteen volumes running from 1946 to 1963. Volumes 1-3, 5-12, and 15-18 have been digitized with volumes 4, 13, and 14 to be added soon.

Wait until I show my children! Perhaps this will move me from "Mean Mommy" to "Favorite Mommy" status. Of course I am their only mommy, but whatever!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Christ is Risen!!!

Easter!

Our wonderful priest taught us an Easter greeting - popular among the Greeks. We are not Greek, but I am sure they won't mind if we use the phrase.

One person says, "Christ is risen!"; and the other person responds, "Truly, He is risen!"So...............................................................


Christ is Risen!!!

(hint - now it is your turn)

P.S. - Here it is in Latin & Greek
Christus resurrexit! Vere resurrexit! – Latin
Christos Anesti! Alithos Anesti! – Greek
(Thank you Candice for these translations)

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Mommia's Hashbrown Casserole

Holy Saturday

Here I am, posting a meatless dish - at the end of Lent - late as usual. But, since we, Catholics, are required to abstain on ALL Fridays (not just during Lent, though outside of Lent you are allowed another form of penance if you cannot abstain - but abstaining is the universal law), I think it will still be of some use.

I took a basic recipe & put my twist on it. This could be a meatless main dish for Fridays, or side dish, or add Ham for an easy meal for other days of the week

Mommia's Hashbrown Casserole

1 can cream of mushroom soup (undiluted)
16 oz. sour cream or cottage cheese
3 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese
3 eggs
1 medium onion, chopped
pinch of black pepper
Ham, chopped (leave out for meatless of course)
2 lbs hash browns, thawed
1/4 cup melted butter (reserve for later)

Mix the first 6-7 ingredients in bowl, then add the hashbrowns. Put into a greased 9x13 casserole dish & bake (375 degrees) for about 30 minutes. Drizzle 1/4 cup of melted butter on top, and bake for about 10 more minutes.

I added the eggs and an extra cup of cheese for more protein. I liked the result & think I will leave it that way, even when adding ham.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Excessive television causes Autism?

Good Friday

Excessive television causes Autism? An interesting theory, one that is causing quite an uproar in the Autism community. What qualifies me to comment on this issue? I have a child on the Autism Spectrum.

First, let me give a very basic description of the Autism Spectrum – I say “basic” because it is a disease with a wide range of symptoms from child to child. One thing that really bothers me is when people assume they know what you are going through, or how your child should be treated, just because they know someone who has a child with autism.

From the Autism Society of America:

“Autism is a complex developmental disability that typically appears during the first three years of life and is the result of a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the brain, impacting development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills. Both children and adults with autism typically show difficulties in verbal and non-verbal communication, social interactions, and leisure or play activities. One should keep in mind however, that autism is a spectrum disorder and it affects each individual differently and at varying degrees.”
There are five diagnosis under the umbrella in the Autism Spectrum (formally known as Pervasive Developmental Disorder). My child is what some would call on the “less affected” end of the spectrum. I beg to differ. Yes, he is very intelligent, but I think that can cause even more problems when people think he can control his behavior because he is so intelligent (this was actually said to me by the school district.) Don’t make an assumption until you have walked a mile in my shoes.

Back to the theory. Good Morning America recently did a segment titled “Controversial New Theory Links Autism to TV”. Michael Waldman, a Cornell University economics professor, recently wrote a research paper on this resulting from his own experience with his child. This has caused some rumblings in the Autism community. I think there is some truth to it, though I do not agree fully with him.

His theory is “Excessive TV viewing by children with a genetic disposition to autism makes them more likely to develop the disorder.” He first became interested in this when his own child was diagnosed with Autism. He had noticed his son had been watching a lot of television. When the television was turned off, there was no immediate noticeable change, but after several months his son’s problems were gone.

The first thing to notice here is he is not saying television causes Autism, only it may be one of the triggers for those with a genetic disposition to it. I have heard similar theories about other “triggers”. I think the danger here is the "Refrigerator Mother" Hypothesis of Autism – that is, lack of parental warmth causing Autism. We all know that hypothesis has been disproved, but what is to stop people from thinking that if too much TV causes Autism, then it must be the parent’s fault for allowing their children to watch this much TV? I strongly agree that too much TV is bad for everyone; in fact, even a little TV can be bad (especially with what the media is putting out now). I also think we can all agree that using the television as a babysitter is not a good thing (even if it is only watching educational programs). To say television causes Autism is ignorant, but I don’t think he is saying that.

I do not think television caused my child’s autism. I don’t focus on the cause, but on the treatment. However, I do tend to think there was a genetic disposition, and something triggered it – the vaccination he got when he was one day old, or the double dose of the MMR before he started school, or the freon gas I was exposed to while pregnant with him…only God knows. I DO think television (or computer, or any other device that limits interaction with other people) makes it worse. When he watches TV, or plays a game on the computer, he gets locked into his own world. Short periods, of about an hour or so once in awhile, don’t seem to cause problems, in fact, I use the TV or computer as one of his motivators for good behavior. Any more than that, and there are problems with focusing, listening, eye contact, conversation skills, frustration, tantrums, rigidity, etc. Spending one night at someones home where the TV & the computer is used a lot more, results in a host of problems when he comes home. It is like he is stuck in his own world, and it is a battle to get him out. He needs interaction with other people. He also needs to expand his interests beyond those he is hyper-focused on (like TV and computer), even if those other interests are initially unwanted by him. Yes, it is easier to let him watch TV, but is it better for him?

The article goes on to say that Mr. Waldman “found a statistical connection between high autism rates and areas of the country that experienced bad weather — areas where kids were more likely to be indoors, watching TV.” My first thought was I wondered if he considered a lack of Vitamin D (its largest source coming from the sun) to be an issue. Vitamin D deficiency is not uncommon, especially when the weather is poor, or people spend a lot of time indoors (using sunblock is also a factor). In fact, most of us are probably deficient in this vitamin. Research is showing we need much more than the current RDA guidelines (please see this excellent article that was in Reader’s Digest). The Vitamin D Council says
“Current research indicates vitamin D deficiency plays a role in causing seventeen varieties of cancer, heart disease, stroke, hypertension, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, depression, chronic pain, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, muscle wasting, birth defects and periodontal disease.”
Who’s to say that the lack of Vitamin D does not also play a roll somewhere in Autism? There is already a lot of research showing a connection between a deficiency and neurological disorders.

I agree with Mr. Waldman when he said, “I think we should look under ever single, plausible stone." Perhaps we should focus on limiting television as part of the treatment, and not on too much television as the problem.

What do you think?

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Are We Raising "Academic" Kids?

Feast of Saint Irene

This is the title of an excellent article directed towards homeschoolers. First, before I share it, I wanted to pen some thoughts of my own.

In answer to the question in the title of this post, of course we are. But there is SO much more to learn besides academics. If all that was taught was academics, then all we would have are a bunch of computers with legs. One needs to build the child's character too. Who do you want to build your child's character? Yourself? Or ninety-one other people? (That would include the teacher, the thirty students, and the student's parents who have an influence on the students.) We all hear the news; we all have seen ill behaved children; we have all met rude teens (one only needs to look behind the counter at a fast food establishment). Are those the type of people you want teaching your child? Yes, I have heard the argument “they will get exposed to those people sooner or later.” My reply is, why not wait until the child has proper discernment? Why not build a strong foundation first? Why not expose the child little by little, and be by his/her side to help, to explain it all?

I need to be clear here – my children are not saints, not yet anyway. Are they ever ill behaved? Of course. Are they ever rude? Yes. The difference is that I am there to correct them. A teacher in an over-crowded classroom cannot do that. She/he doesn’t even have the time to teach all the academics that are needed.

Academically, my children are strong. It is their characters that impress people the most. They love spending time with their grandparents and great grandmother, helping them and not expecting or wanting anything in return. This carries over in how they treat other adults, like offering to help an elderly woman put her groceries into her car. Recently, my children saved their money for quite awhile. They each had a special thing in mind to purchase. Adults frequently commented on how impressed they were about this, as they are so used to children expecting things to be given to them. (As I write this, I had to stop to correct one of my children for slamming a door in anger. See? No saints here….. not yet. But I am working on it diligently.)

Let us not forget the old, tired argument of “but they need to learn social skills”. Go back to the middle of my second paragraph – are those really the social skills you want your child to learn? Besides, it’s not as if we live in a cave. We go to Mass, get together with other homeschool families, go on frequent field trips, etc.

Ok, enough of my ramblings. Here is the article by Amy Pak of Home School in the Woods. She was kind enough to give me special permission to post it here. Please read the article, she expresses it all much better than I can. Thank you Amy!

Are We Raising "Academic" Kids?

I remember when we first began homeschooling our children in the mid 90s. The key question every relative, neighbor, and even church-going friend was concerned about was, "Can you really educate your children? Will they have all the academics that they need to enter the world?" Of course, we would proceed to give a blow-by-blow of the language and math that we were teaching in whatever grade they were in (to see how it compared with what was being taught to their public school peers) and I began to notice a "testing" of sorts when they were with my children. They would ask academic questions of them to see what they knew and what they didn't know--questions you just didn't ask children in everyday conversation...and usually when they thought I was out of earshot. As the years progressed, I found that yes, the "reading, writing, and 'rithmetic" were an important part of our day, but being with my children 24/7 was giving me much more exposure to their attitudes, their mannerisms, and a front seat to how they dealt with each other as siblings and made choices and decisions in many situations. There were many opportunities to not only correct a selfish gesture or a mean-spirited remark, but several conversations arose regarding how to prepare oneself for the world, for being a respecter of persons, for choosing the right path, and most of all, for molding one's character to be more Christ-like. From the smallest thing as a person's attitude we'd see on T.V. to how we saw another child conduct himself in a store, everything became a topic for discussion to learn about what we, together, observed. THESE were crucial learning times! And had my husband and I not been with my children as much as we were, teaching them from the home, we would not only have missed all the golden moments of opportunity, but I have no doubt we would have lost them daily to the values and influences of their peers and others of whom I know nothing about.

My daughter just approached me the other day with a serious revelation that had dawned on her. Among the many friends she has at church, some are homeschooled, but several are not and it is obvious in their choices and comments. Thoughtfully, she told me, "Mom, I fight myself not to conform to the "popular" friends in the group. I am so glad that among them I have great role models who hold to a higher calling. If I had not been homeschooled, I know for a fact I'd be in trouble... I know I'd have been listening to them rather than to you, but I can see where they are headed! And I know that they should be making wiser choices and it's frustrating to watch...and that could've been me.

"Wow! This took a lot for her to say, as not only was it a reality check for herself (and a confession of sorts), but for her dad and me as parents! And to know that all those moments we had spent sculpting and polishing her character all those years are now reaping a reward. She has eyes to see and ears to hear. All of a sudden, the academics don't seem to have the weight they carried before. Yes, they have their place, but there is a bigger lesson to be taught here... Foundation of character and moral values, the life-long striving to be Christ-like. As John the Baptist said, "He must increase, but I must decrease." As I pondered what my daughter told me as she left the room, one comment hung like a warm ember in my heart: "All I know is, I'm so glad I've been home with you!"

With two more rowdy boys with years still ahead of them until manhood, I thanked God for that inspiring word from my "could-have-been-prodigal" daughter. And with that, I take a deep breath, say a prayer, and turn to take the next step on the path He has set before me.

By Amy Pak

Hands-on Teaching Tips! is a division of Home School in the Woods. No content may be removed or used without permission from Home School in the Woods.


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Monday, April 02, 2007

Move Aside Von Trapp Family!

Feast of Saint Ebbe the Younger and Companions

I have been wanting to post this, and since I should be straightening up my studio, I thought now is as good of a time as any!

I feel as if I have found a buried treasure - right in my backyard! There is a local Catholic homeschooling family that is extremely talented. I have known them for quite sometime, and have seen their talent grow & develop. Apparently I have been living in some cave not to have realised how incredibly talented they are, even producing CDs! Von Trapp family move aside - there is a new family in town - introducing.......




I wish I knew how to post a music clip so that you could hear their wonderful talent. If you go to their website, they have a track of music on just about every page.

They are not only talented, a God given gift their mother says in an
interview with Theresa Thomas:Everyday Catholic, but they are the epitome of a holy, Catholic, homeschooling family - well-behaved, well-educated, and more importantly, living their faith to the fullest! One only needs to go to their website, and click on their About Chamber Music page to see what I mean. The oldest will soon be attending university, so this may mean the end of their apostolate (and I do consider it an apostolate because they bring so much joy to so many). I hope God provides a way that we can continue to benefit from their talent.

EZ-Bake Oven For Your Computer!

Feast of Saint Francis of Paola

Queen Lucy got an Easy Bake Oven for Christmas, as yet, unused (she just got the gift due to a conflict in schedules between us & the gift giver). A friend had warned me it was recalled. I was looking online to see if I could find the recall info when I came across an interesting item - ThinkGeek's PC EZ-Bake Oven. From their website:

Tiny Cakes = Big Fun!
One of our primary missions here at ThinkGeek is discovering ways to live happy and productive lives while expending a minimum of energy. Who wants to waste time and effort getting up to grab a snack from the fridge or walking to the bathroom? Thankfully, there are already gadgets that take care of those tedious chores for you.
Our newest contribution to the "No effort, No problem" craze is also a throwback to one of the toys we loved as kids. Who can forget the joy of mixing up a tiny cake mix and cooking it with the warm glow of a light bulb? We didn't seem to care that it was only about 3 bites worth - it was damn tasty, and homemade with our own grubby little hands.
Now the computer savvy among us can relive the fun of having your very own personal mini-oven with the PC Ez-Bake oven! It fits in a 5 1/4" drive bay and plugs right into your power supply with the included Molex connector. Also included is "PC Ez-Cook", the open-source oven controller software with hundreds of easy and creative recipes for your PC Ez-Bake oven, and even a fuzzy-logic cooking control system to precisely measure the doneness of your cake, cookie, or cheese souffle. The PC Ez-Bake oven can even be used to cook your Pop Tarts, Bagel Bites, or any tiny or flat food. YUM!

If that is not enough to convince you to park one of these puppies into your drive bay, they also offer a Caffeinated Meatloaf (comes dehydrated) Mix, and "Special office friendly recipes including "Duck Sauce Packet Tart", "Vending Machine Casserole", and "Non-Dairy Creamer Creme Brulee" " Emeril Lagasse, watch out!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Motu Proprio - Can it be true????

Feast of Saint Catherine of Palma

From Roman Catholic Blog

Rorate Caeli reports that in an interview for the cover story (pages 56-60) of Le Figaro Magazine (weekly magazine of the French national daily Le Figaro), published today (not yet available on the newspaper's website), Cardinal Bertone has confirmed that the impending motu proprio allowing for the wider use of the Missal published in 1962 by Pope John XXIII, with its own calendar will be published.

Here's the story: Breaking news: Bertone confirms motu proprio

Here's the quote:

Is a Decree widening the possibility of celebrating the Latin Mass according to the rite from before Vatican II (the so-called Mass of Saint Pius V) still expected?

[Secretary of State] Cardinal Bertone: The merit of the conciliar liturgical reform is intact. But both [for reasons of] not losing the great liturgical heritage left by Saint Pius V and for granting the wish of those faithful who desire to attend Masses according to this rite, within the framework of the Missal published in 1962 by Pope John XXIII, with its own calendar, there is no valid reason not to grant to every priest in the world* the right to celebrate according to this form. The authorization of the Supreme Pontiff would evidently preserve the validity of the rite of Paul VI. The publication of the motu proprio which specifies this authorisation will take place, but it will be the pope himself who will explain his motivations and the framework of his decision. The Sovereign Pontiff will personally explain his vision for the use of the ancient Missal to the Christian people, and particularly to the Bishops.

The USCCB has also confirmed that the motu proprio is expected soon: Tridentine Mass: Pope looks for bridge to tradition

For those who think the "traddies" are taking over the world (we wish!), check out Amy Welborn's Motu Proprio Tip Sheet.

Palm Sunday


Feast of Blessed Ludovico Pavoni

Today is Palm Sunday, the beginning of Holy Week. I think this is one of my children's favorite Masses because they get a palm. (And maybe one the mothers like the least - only because we are constantly trying to get our dear children to leave the palms alone during Mass, and not wave them in the air at Father.) It puzzled me why this long skinny leaf would entrance them so. Then it occurred to me, children have an innate sense of what is good. Palms are sacramentals. I think they realised this before they were taught this. Perhaps this year we will actually weave them.

 
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