Early Summer Blue Sunrise

Linda

 

~ End of the school year sunrise photo by Linda – thanks Linda!

listen to the little voice inside that says do it

 

 

handsigns_K

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Advent: Journey

11201173_10153625849323810_4653240059729839108_n“The Sun will rise and set regardless.

What we choose to do with the light while it’s here is up to us.

Journey wisely.”
Alexandra Elle

5:5 Arise, O Jerusalem, stand upon the height; look toward the east, and see your children gathered from west and east at the word of the Holy One, rejoicing that God has remembered them.

5:6 For they went out from you on foot, led away by their enemies; but God will bring them back to you, carried in glory, as on a royal throne.

Baruch 5:5-6

 

Advent: Hope

linda shootPhoto about

HOPE

taken and shared by my friend Linda.

 

First Sunday of Advent

Reading 1 Jer 33:14-16

The days are coming, says the LORD,
when I will fulfill the promise
I made to the house of Israel and Judah.
In those days, in that time,
I will raise up for David a just shoot ;
he shall do what is right and just in the land.
In those days Judah shall be safe
and Jerusalem shall dwell secure;
this is what they shall call her:
“The LORD our justice.”
Amen.
( the video that is connected to the word hope above contains photography from Jim Crotty and music from Alison Krauss and Yo-Yo Ma)

Prayers from and to St. Lucy

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Saint Lucy

delivered her eyes to her lover on a platter
in an act of devotion
because he had once admired them
exchanging her vision for the prophet’s.
In an act of devotion,
Saint Lucy lost her sense,
exchanging her vision for the prophet’s.
She desires inspection.
Saint Lucy lost her sense
Traded spectacles for dreams
and denies inspection.
Saint Lucy, unspoken,
for she can not weep
and loves her Lord, fiercely.
Such women are disfigured by their devotion.
Saint Lucy tore out her eyes
and raised gaping lids to God.

Laura Ehrisman

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Euthychia suggested that the sums would make a good bequest, but Lucy countered,

“…whatever you give away at death for the Lord’s sake you give because

you cannot take it with you.

Give now to the true Savior,

while you are healthy,

whatever you intended to give away at your death.”

~ St. Lucy, via Wikipedia

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Forgiveness Friday: A Little Band of Angels

“ Then a voice came from Heaven.

‘I will show myself. And I will do it again!’ ”

(John 12: 24-25, 32-33)

Okay. It’s good that I went for a walk.

Here’s the bottom line of my past couple of weeks based on a 20 minute cruise around the block:

1: I’m Homesick

2: I’m Scared

As it should be, there is media frenzy in the United States about one of the many murders of a young black man that have happened in the past few weeks. I’m struggling to respond to both the frenzy and the brutal loss of life.

Over most of my last, say, ten Lents that I’ve observed, I’ve found myself needing to give up some or all forms of media that include the news. I’ve always been a hater of news that frightens.

I’m tempted to blame it on the press and my memories of war footage during dinner meals as a little girl. For now, I’m taking the easy way out and blaming it on my brother. That’s what siblings are for, right? Hopefully he’s not still angry that I cracked the code for his little 12” square safe when he was out playing in the yard back in 1970 whatever.

Nah. Can’t blame him for even the price of tea in China…he’s the bestOof the Pesto and he didn’t turn my t.v. set on when I watched too much news. I did. Right?

Last year I tried to give up sarcasm for Lent. It was a good idea – “say what you mean and mean what you say.” Unfortunately, I only lasted 48 hours.

HOMESICK

This year my plan was to give up Facebook, and do for others as I read about and pray for illustrator Maurice Sendak.

The Facebook thing has been fairly easy as I find myself bored and confused there most days of late, but gave into peeking and full out looking by last week as I was waiting to hear if a friend’s baby had been born in Ohio.

Done! Hudson made it to the world safe and sound so my temptation to peek is gone and done.

So, yes.

That’s the homesick part. This is my first Spring West of the Mississip’ and I’m giving myself a reprieve. Patiently waiting for baby photos is a good and healthy thing.

It’s funny isn’t it?

Homesickness, I’m realizing, is no different from grief. It’s all about: “Daaang, I’m miss that <enter place, time, person, food item, grandpa, special tree with the handmade swing…etc, and et cetera>

Yes?

I wish I could remember which friend or family member was checking on me a few months back about our transition from one state to next. I was trying to explain that what stinks about the level of change in our family in the past year is that moments of sadness pass and at my age, I can’t exactly remember which <enter place, time, person, food item, grandpa, special tree with the handmade swing…etc, and et cetera> I am missing.

Ha! Like just now! I just finished closing my eyes for a second to remember what I was going to type next and a crow went screaming by outside. As I started a nano doze I must have been thinking of – jeepers, who knows, but it jolted my eyes back open.

“Whoah!” My tired and adult mind says – “Wake up. You’ve been hearing crows for 45 years now. Bzzzzzzzdt. No times for a nap dearie. In just a bit you need to conquer the urban sprawl and get to the store.”

FEAR

So, my Forgiveness Friday post is this:

Grace, for me in the past 24 hours or so, arrived in my kitchen a few hours ago in the form of Eric Clapton’s version of “Swing Low, Sweet Chariot.”

It was 5:40 a.m. or some such and I’d just sent one son off to track practice (gotta’ run when it’s cool), and turned around to see the Jordan River, and this is what it looked like:

Though as a first world mom I am inordinately thankful for a dishwasher, the drama queen in me wanted to fall to the tile and weep.

I know. I’m not the only woman living near the Mississippi or Jordan rivers with lots of worry or weary on this fine spring morning. Dishes to need to be done and boys are being murdered on both sides of the planet as we speak. Scary stuff. I guess I was feeling like I needed to solve both problems by noon.

Enter our boy Clapton….I stood there at the sink for a second and tried to get my bearings and found my self jamming out to my sweet little BandOfAngels sink shelf for a couple of minutes. I went over to the window and looked at the sun that was just up.

I remembered that one of our boys has a new best friend in said house, took a deep breath, and went back to my Sticky Note plans for at least today.

If you too need a little Clampton to get you to noon…here’s a link: Swing Low.

Pax, Kate

Worried Wednesday: Hell in a Handbasket, or What?

So, on Wednesday, when I post, I almost always call it “Worried Wednesday.”

This is because, particularly since I have become a mom, I worry. I came up with this theory, I think it was last winter, that I would take my mother’s suggestion to worry with abandon at least one certain time a day for “x” amount of time. I can’t remember if she said ten minutes or an hour, and that for her, “poof” – the worry chore is done and off she would go to the groceries or art or library or lunching she would go.What more could she do until the next wave of anxiety hit? Do something – plan a garden, whip up a poem, make some soup. And then meet worry at the door at “x-o’clock” the next day.

At any rate, at some point in the last year I decided to take up that idea and to work as hard as possible to worry all day on Wednesdays. I was thinking along the lines of the old-fashioned Monday is for laundry rule that my children’s great-grandmother still stands by.

It started as a good plan and worked well for a long time. As a matter of fact, it became a great joke between a friend who was battling a sudden and intense bout of cancer last winter and spring. She knew about my Wednesday plan of sorts, so I could leave phone messages to her or her daughter saying: “It’s Wednesday what’s the deal? Give me some worries, call back with white cell report, having a good day – bring on the worry.”

Okay. I’m not sure if I left that message. I do know I thought of lots of strange messages to both my cancer friend and her oldest daughter.

It’s either very sad or very funny, or a mix of both that social networking has my brain wired this way…into bits and pieces and messages.

At any rate, oddly enough it was me needing to say good-bye on a fairly short notice as we started our adventure to Iowa. My good-bye to her was one of the hardest. We held hand on her porch for a while and she and I exchanged out loud our bottom line mom worries

(hers being – “what if I die before our youngest turns into a teenager?” and mine being, in a nutshell, “now that mine are flying nest, what if the world sucks ALL of their confidence, imagination and serves the devil on a platter and it is, God forbid, one of them that we bury first, then what?”)

I will also admit that, for a fact, I left no less than six bizarre fashion messages to these same friends since last year saying something to the effect of: “No. Not joking. DyING in the changing room. Dress emergency…” Yada.I hate to shop. They love to shop. It’s a fair exchange.

Actually, the last fashion bizarro message, aka: “let’s change the subject about death diversion tactic message” involved a forty minute dash in my new city to find something “appropriate” to wear. The only way I managed the stress of being the new girl on the block that week was to call and leave one more fashion message for my friend (the one with cancer)’s phone saying (tongue in cheek and laughing at this crazy dress situation):

“Okay – I’ve devoted a year’s worth of Wednesday’s to your stupid cancer – drop a knee NOW! and start your crazy novena’s because the next hour is about me and the damn black dress that I never found last year.”

It turned out to be perfect timing because the message ended up on speaker phone to not only my friend, but her other six daughters she was in the car with, as we were all apparently whipping down highways trying to save the day by way of consignment salvation.

I

know

I’m not the only one, nor the first mom, dad, uncle, aunt, person to lose many, many hours of sleep over worries that the fact of the matter is that the world is, generation after generation going to hell in hand basket. It is!

As I did some research to write a post on a racism vigilante tragedy in Florida, I found some other headlines for articles I could have read:

HLN must see, must share:

  • A road made from toilets,
  • coach accused of biting winning coaches ear,
  •  child’s fingers found in dumpster ,
  • cops catch mom choking an 11 month old,
  • sister salutes brother in Afghanistan,
  • Hunger Games and the $140 million weekend?,
  • and in other news Ashton Kutcher is heading to space

You know what I’ve decided this year if I’ve decided anything?

The world has always been going to Hell in a hand basket for children the adults who work to make it, one would hope, the safest, most fun, and maybe even funny place to live.

Not a bad realization to sit with as I think, I am half way done with my first Lent while living West of the Mississippi river.

And yeah. I’ve lost several hours of sleep this week over, no, not needless worry about my son’s becoming men and flying our nest – it’s the real thing! Oh yeah, violence, racism, drug addiction, poverty…. Ack! It keeps me up most of the night every few months.

Last night was one of them.

And the other thing that I’ve decided this year if I’ve decided anything?

I can’t make it through this mom job of getting my sons to adulthood, reasonably in tact, without a lot of laughter.

Maybe it’s just me, but the ’70’s Sesame Street clip in this article I found while avoiding what really has me worried, is for now, the thread of sweetness that I’m going to hang my hat on while I wait on the sun to rise here in a few minutes.