Wednesday, October 28, 2009

How to start a Zentangle

takes me back to first grade - a very nice place to be!

It's here!

Pioneer Woman's cookbook has arrived! I've aleady tried and 'died for' many of the recipes from her blog/website
but what I love about the cookbook are her stunning, yet heartwarming, photos that tell her family's story of living on a cattle ranch in northern Oklahoma. If you love cowboys, cowboy kids, horses, dogs, sunsets I know you'll love this book!

A Gracious Man

Dean Koontz spent hours at CCI signing these two wonderful books, which chronicle the life of his beloved Trixie, a CCI released graduate pup.

He was very sweet to pose with America, who is half sister to his current pup, Anna

Family Gatherings

Here we are celebrating my brother's 70th birthday.

You might remember the collage I made way back in June
It was great fun to be able to present it to him in person.

The next day we headed to Santa Cruz to celebrate the wedding of Rosie (Rod's youngest sister of the 10) and Darren.  What a special occasion!
Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: Rosie/Darren wedding
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Friday, October 23, 2009

Two Book Recommendations

This was recommended by my sister-in-law, a school librarian.

I'm in the middle of reading this eye opening book. It's particularly appropriate for parents of middle school girls, but has much to say about how we raise our daughters and how we can give them tools to become intelligent, confident, independent thinking women.

A backyard visitor

Nice to have a jay back.
I was afraid if I moved any closer to get a better photo he'd leave.

The Jesus Prayer

I've heard Fr. Timone speak often of the Jesus prayer, but not until yesterday at his retreat on prayer, was I able to make it my own.
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.
I've taken some of its history from this website:
St. Vladamir's Orthodox Theological Seminary

It dates back to the 6th century.

Father gave many examples of the power of prayer, but for some of us prayer does not come easily. If that is true with you I suggest you try the Jesus prayer. In the classroom I used to ask the children where could they pray, and predictably they answered anywhere, not just in church. I've always been a car radio listener, but lately, prayer, particularly the rosary and now the Jesus prayer seems to be more what soothes my harried brain.

From St. Vladamir's: The Jesus Prayer is recommended in the morning, following our prayer rule, for some period of time, perhaps 10 or 15 minutes. If that is impossible, then sometime before noon, or in the evening. This might be called "formal" use of the prayer. The second form of the Jesus Prayer is the "free" use of the prayer. This means at any and all other times of the day, or night. This is especially true for the semi-automatic tasks such as driving, doing dishes, walking, being unable to sleep, etc. The Jesus Prayer is notably useful in time of extreme concern or upset.

We are all called to pray without ceasing, says St. Paul in 1 Thess 5:17.
The Jesus Prayer provides one good way to pray constantly.

Once again I'm so grateful to be living my life in this moment, spending time with the people I love. Yesterday was another example of my blessings, praying with Pam and Rose and Mary, under the guidance of Fr. Timone, the most Christlike priest I know.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

America, out and about

in the hood

watching LaCosta Volleyball with buddy Francie

The blessing of the animals at St. James, with Prado, Kane, Francie and Hefner

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Our Lady of the Rosary

I started praying the rosary on my daily walk in the late 1970's, spurred by some war threat, now an everyday occurrence.
I've said it countless times since, sometimes with utmost reverence, sometimes with impatience, sometimes with pleading, but always with comfort. It is my first thought in my wakeless nights. Often I think, well if I can't sleep, at least I have more time to pray.
I have several rosaries that have great value to me, one my mother used daily, one my dad always carried in his pocket, one from my First Communion (teeny tiny silver beads) and one with gorgeous Swarovski crystal beads handmade by my dear friend, Pam, on the occasion of my retirement, but most often I use my fingers to count the prayers.

I am fascinated by the request of Our Blessed Mother in personal appearances to the children at Fatima and the visionaries at Medjugorje to pray the Rosary. I know she has been the instrument in my life to bring me closer to her son and I'd like to think the rosary has been a small steppingstone in that quest.

Cindy's show coming up!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Blessings on the feast of St. Francis

so many legends surround this holy man.
Many do not know that the origin of the Christmas creche can be traced to him.

I pray his well known prayer daily, but here's a lesser known one this is equally as beautiful:

Most High, all-powerful, all-good Lord,
All praise is Yours, all glory, all honour and all blessings.
To you alone, Most High, do they belong,
and no mortal lips are worthy to pronounce Your Name.

Praised be You my Lord with all Your creatures,
especially Sir Brother Sun,
Who is the day through whom You give us light.
And he is beautiful and radiant with great splendour,
Of You Most High, he bears the likeness.

Praised be You, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars,
In the heavens you have made them bright, precious and fair.

Praised be You, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
And fair and stormy, all weather's moods,
by which You cherish all that You have made.

Praised be You my Lord through Sister Water,
So useful, humble, precious and pure.

Praised be You my Lord through Brother Fire,
through whom You light the night
and he is beautiful and playful and robust and strong.

Praised be You my Lord through our Sister,
Mother Earth
who sustains and governs us,
producing varied fruits with coloured flowers and herbs.

Praise be You my Lord through those who grant pardon
for love of You and bear sickness and trial.
Blessed are those who endure in peace,
By You Most High, they will be crowned.

Praised be You, my Lord through Sister Death,
from whom no-one living can escape.
Woe to those who die in mortal sin!
Blessed are they She finds doing Your Will.
No second death can do them harm.

Praise and bless my Lord and give Him thanks,
And serve Him with great humility.

This is a beautiful book written by Robert Kennedy Jr. on the Life of St. Francis

Magnificent species of orchids

from the orchid show at San Diego Botanic Garden, aka Quail Gardens

Aggies didn't win yesterday, but...

Lila will always be a winner!

Friday, October 2, 2009

The long anticipated chenille party

The hit of the party - the chenille that Cindy was kind enough to share
Cindy demonstrating her unique afghan stitch
Joyce showing Carrie how to crochet
Shauna, Stephanie and America
the sweet bracelets Davi brought for Cindy and I

It will be fun to see the results!
Thank you, Cindy for your hospitality.

Feast of the guardian angels

Angel of God, my guardian dear
To whom God's love commits me here
Ever this day be at my side
To light, to guard, to rule and to guide.

I am so grateful for the countless time angels, both here and from above, have been my saving grace!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

I guess it's autumn

These trees in my neighborhood seem to think so, but what's with the 90 degree weather? It's just not right!
It must be very confusing if you're a tree.

I only had my phone to take the photo and sadly it didn't do the magnificent color of the leaves justice.

America makes the big time!

Pat Lawson, the magic behind many successful CCI events, was sweet to use America's photo on a tee box sign for the upcoming CCI First Annual Invitational golf tournament.
Many thanks to Allie's Party Equipment Rental, Inc. for supporting our cause.

Here's a link in case you'd like to join the fun

As we turn the calendar to October

let us be aware of the many who have and who continue to suffer, not just from breast cancer, but cancers of all kinds.
There are reminders everywhere that this is breast cancer awareness month, I got mine from Yahoo this morning.
I was encouraged to read about the Athena project beginning at UCSD.
It seems likely that this will lead to a breakthrough.
I can't help but remember those who have returned to heaven after suffering with this disease, but everyday there are more and more who are cured. I also would like to pay tribute to the hundreds of thousands who have walked thousands of miles to help raise money for this cause. Surely it was your steps and your blisters that have brought us this far.