Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Busy! Robotics, Retreats and More!


So it's been busy since this year began. Robotics took up much of the time for my guys, but what a blast they had. Something really kicked in for Max this year and I can say he owned it. There's such a huge learning curve and this year he was invested. He's also playing rugby. Dagny started playing lacrosse. Why, you might ask, do we keep so busy? Well, I find that our kids do better when they are physically active and mentally challenged. Home is too relaxing. We have intentionally made it so ... but maybe it has backfired. In any case, they are thriving.
A couple of weeks ago, I finally made a trip to the bookstore to see whether TEN EASTER EGGS was on the bookshelves but it wasn't :(  What a disappointment. But they will be ordering it. My friend, Amy's book, RED BUTTERFLY, wasn't there either, so I asked for it. Folks, you can help keep our books in the pipeline by asking for them at the shops or at the library. I saw some other friends' books and that made all the difference in the world! To see them in the wild!!!
Right now, I'm reading THORNBIRDS by Colleen McCullough. It's a re-read in honor of her death. I find it interesting to read it as a Catholic now and a grown up and as a writer! What a wonderful book with characters who burrow themselves into your heart, who are as real as the people you know.
So back to busyness. We had the wonderful opportunity to have a Lenten retreat at the very beginning with Fr. Mitch Pacwa. I will never read or listen to Isaiah 53 the same way. It cuts me to the core, how our blessed Lord bore everything for the love of us, wounded for us, to make us whole. The perfect sacrifice. The Jewish laws forbade human sacrifice, yet this was the only way, so I can only imagine how shocking this must've been to people Isaiah was preaching to. I could sit here and meditate upon salvation history and not understand why God loves us wretched creatures so, for even a mother does not love her child this much. I thought I knew what love was, but it pales in comparison. 

Michael and Max went to a men's conference. I am so glad they have opportunities like this to build Godly men for they have the responsibility to lead their families to holiness. Grace flows through them and if they abdicate their responsibilities, well, you can see the result all around you -- broken families, children going astray, loss of morals. We build strong men and we'll rebuild the family.  

We are halfway through Lent and that means lots more choir practice. I didn't post my usual picture with the mice torturing the cat ... but I've done very little spiritual reading aside from my daily Mass readings. I try to get to Mass as much as possible since when I'm busy, I need my Jesus the most. And I got to thinking, how funny we Catholics are ... we go to Mass, listen, and sometimes have terrible homilies, or none at all, but we go because we love to be present at Calvary. We are indeed at the foot of the Cross at every single Mass and if we are in the proper state we receive the Body, Blood, Soul, Divinity of Christ in that consecrated Host. What awesome power priests have been given. A priest's hands are like no other. Every time I receive the final blessing, I know it could be my last. And I go in peace to do the work I must do.
The math never adds up. It's a mystery.
My mood has lifted now that the weather has warmed up. The first few games I was freezing in my fat coat watching the kids play. But now, it's such a pleasure to bask in the sunshine. The kids are also better :) And although I've not been able to concentrate on the new book that's been percolating since I went to Storymasters, I am jotting down notes for it and working on shorter things. There is a time and season for everything. I have a difficult time working on a novel when my attention is scattered on many small things. The small things are important too. So for now, shorts. They are my comfort zone. Perhaps I retreat to this as a safety net.
I love all the new growth of spring. I know it's been a hard winter for many of you. May the sunshine warm your hearts and souls and bring you joy. And may your Lenten journey bring you great blessings.

I'll leave you with this beautiful hymn: Transfigure us, O Lord.



Mirka Breen said...

Looking at Max, I wanted to sing "Sunrise, Sunset" because the line "when did he grow to be so tall?" came in to my mind.

Many blessings for the rest of Lent, Vijaya.

Faith E. Hough said...

Are those trees near you? I only discovered our first snowdrops yesterday--late, late spring. I'm anxious for flowers and grass and sun and Easter!

Johnell said...

Lovely. We're gearing up for Semana Santa in our country. I hear it's quite a week, so I'm looking forward to all the things I'll learn and get to see in our new, temporary home.

Joyce Moyer Hostetter said...

I get that about inactivity and relaxation backfiring. This month has been soooo busy with school visits and other life stuff and I realize I am so invigorated by it. Writing can be deadly in its own way if I let myself get too sedentary. I need to be out and about even though I adore being at home alone.

Vijaya, your blog posts are always so enjoyable and uplifting. I like the way you mix books, and family and your passion for Christ all in one account.

Vijaya said...

Mirka, we can sing together. It is one of my favorites. I have given him to the Blessed Mother, to guide and protect him. Thank you for the blessings, my friend.

Faith, the trees are outside my porch on the south side. I love snowdrops! Shouldn't they arrive in January. But it's been a wicked winter. Come spring! Easter will be that much sweeter this year.

Johnell, where are you? In Spain or Italy? Holy Week celebrations are special at our church too -- that's the music we are preparing for. But I can just imagine how spectacular it must be to be in one of those old cathedrals in Spain with the strains of polyphonic music coming from the loft. Heaven ...

Joyce, I'm so glad you are again in media ras. With children at home, I have a good balance, but I can see how acedia can set in. Thank you for visiting my blog; as you can see it's an integrated life.

Becky Shillington said...

You are so right, Vijaya--there is a time and place for everything. I have been feeling a bit scattered lately, too. I am looking forward to summer's slower pace!