Friday, October 31, 2008

Freely given

The snow fell gently outside covering the countryside in a garment of white while the church lay silent, unaffected by the storm. Lori shivered and looked up at the crucifix behind the altar. She had always averted her glance from Christ’s mangled form, but now she gazed at it intensely, saw the cold metal spikes that had been hammered through His feet and wrists. Saw the blood dripping from the two-inch Jerusalem thorns that had been savagely driven into the crown of Christ’s head. Tears slid down her cheeks as she continued to study the crucified form, tracing His slumped body against the cross in death. The tears flowed copiously.

Lori had sat before the image most of her life, yet until this moment she had never really seen it for what it was. Not a depiction of the dead Christ, but a monument to God’s ultimate sacrifice of love. And for the first time she connected to that love, not as a catholic, or even as a christian, but as a mother who had just learned of the death of another’s child and how that child had been given freely in her stead.

Lori covered her face and wept loudly. How could anyone love another that much? She pondered.
And with that question came an epiphany as a recent gospel reading resounded in her mind: " He that spared not his own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?”

The fears that bound her soul began to unfetter as she reached to grab hold of this new revelation as another woman long ago had once reached toward the hem of His garment, knowing that the healing of her spirit could be found within it folds.

Extract from “A Miracle For St. Cecilia’s” by Katherine Valentine

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A surprise recipie

I had a really nice morning. Even though I slept in until 6.20 daughter had already started the boys’ porridge. The boys completed their bookwork just before lunch and husband cooked himself and I a delicious assortment of vegetables plus soup for our mid-day meal.

The boys clamored to do something in the afternoon so husband took them to an adventure playground “near” by.
So after a short spell responding to e-mails I decided to make some rissoles for the children for tea. The recipe said it had a very short preparation time, sounded yummy and with visions of delicious smells wafting out to greet the noses of tired home comers I began.

I happily added all the ingredients just as the recipe said so that I could roll it into “walnut-size” balls but several cup full of flour later the messy mixture would not bind. I went to town adding more breadcrumbs more flour and still was left with a sloppy ….. At last daughter hearing my frustration suggested a well-known Australian breakfast cereal crumbled. After half a packet (I kid you not!) the mixture was beginning to look do-able. So quickly before it decided to change back into ?!@ I made them up and popped them on trays to cook.

No one was exactly enthused with the resultant meal, the two youngest filling up on mashed potato and greens and drowning the rissoles in a pool of tomato sauce. Oldest son queried” what exactly were those things we had for tea…they were pretty solid…did you add concrete?” no dear son not literally, although as every mother who has had to clean it off high-chairs and out of toddlers hair it sets pretty much the same way!

Monday, October 27, 2008


I love nasturtiums! As a little girl I remember climbing over a rickety fence to play in a vacant block. A winter storm had brought a large tree down and the field was waist high in weeds. Of course to grown-ups the holes in the ground were rabbit holes or worse openings to rat nests...but we knew better! These tiny holes , were we small enough to go through them ,would lead us into all sorts of Alice-in -wonderland adventures! 
Unfortunately unlike Alice we had no magic elixir to induce shrinking and so we had to make do with our above ground "fairy land". The fallen tree became on different days, a castle, a fort and in spring-time most magical of all a rocket to our very own planet! For then the nasturtiums bloomed extravagantly and the leaves looked so alien-like it wasn't  hard to make-believe!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A spring ball

When there's nothing much to do(or you think there isn't) and you're feeling kind of bored make a pair of flower fairies and invite them to the spring-time ball!

Monday, October 06, 2008

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Feast of St Francis of Assisi

One day Francis thought that he was not suffering enough, and decided to throw himself onto a bed of roses. He was cut by the thorns, which promptly fell off. His blood stained the leaves of the roses. Those roses still exist at the portucula where he lived. They are still spotted with red on the leaves, they still have no thorns, and despite many people trying, those roses will not grow any other place in the world. 

Friday, October 03, 2008

For My Aunty Therese

My Aunty Therese was taken home to glory early Thursday morning.
At last this sweet gentle soul is at peace and all the pain and discomforts of the last months have ceased.
I remember Aunty Therese on my youngest brothers wedding day. We had two toddlers with us who were having a hard time coping with the celebrations! My aunt quietly came and took their hands and asked if she could show them the garden. My two who would normally balked at leaving mum went trustingly and eagerly with this new friend.
Forward in time to our last trip to New Zealand as a family. We met my aunts in a beautiful park. Just as we were leaving Aunty Therese came up to me and took me aside,"Alison," she said." I didn't want to embarrass them by saying this in front of them(very sensitive to the emotions of teens) but I think your girls are just absolutely gorgeous."
I wish I had pictures of these memories that I could share but I don't so I will just add these two from "the family album"
The first of a considerate older sister looking after her two younger siblings and the second of a beautiful bride on her wedding day.
I am so glad to have the assurance that this woman of faith's life is not over and that as a Catholic I can continue to pray for her and ask her to pray for me.What a blessed assurance, what a marvelous hope for the eternity all believers will spend together with their loving Lord! Aunty Therese I feel privilaged to have known you !

Thursday, October 02, 2008

A robot from a can

I'm not great at slotting in science to our homeschool, so its great when things"just happen". Like this recent activity, where three men made a robot from an empty drink can. Don't ask me how. I just took the pictures! But if I could figure how to post videos to posts I could show you how neatly it worked. Ds(11) did most of the construction with ds(7) as audience and dh there to "offer suggestions"

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

St Therese of Liseux

To Scatter Flowers

O Jesus! O my Love! each eve I come to fling My springtide roses sweet before Thy Cross divine; By their plucked petals fair, my hands so gladly bring, I long to dry Thine every tear!

To scatter flowers!--that means each sacrifice: My lightest sighs and pains, my heaviest, saddest hours, My hopes, my joys, my prayers--I will not count the price-- Behold my flowers!

With deep untold delight Thy beauty fills my soul, Would I might light this love in hearts of all who live! For this, my fairest flowers, all things in my control, How fondly, gladly would I give!

To scatter flowers!--behold my chosen sword For saving sinners' souls and filling Heaven's bowers: The victory is mine--yea, I disarm Thee, Lord, With these my flowers!

The petals in their flight caress Thy Holy Face; They tell Thee that my heart is Thine, and Thine alone. Thou knowest what these leaves are saying in my place: On me Thou smilest from Thy Throne.

To scatter flowers!--that means, to speak of Thee-- My only pleasure here, where tears fill all the hours; But soon, with Angel Hosts, my spirit shall be free To scatter flowers.

     a poem by "the little flower"

Feast of the Archangels

Concert in the holidays

Some images from a recent concert