Wednesday, July 30, 2008

St. Francis and the Portiuncula Indulgence

From Spirit Daily, a story by Susan Tassone about St. Francis and a promise he received from Jesus in response to his faithfulness and zealousness for the good of all souls. Click here to read about this little known and special indulgence.

An indulgence is a remission of the temporal punishment due to sin, the guilt of which has been forgiven.

The date was set from vespers of the first of August until sundown on the second of August, the Feast of Our Lady of the Angels.

It is said that St. Francis was given this day by Our Lord because the Feast of the Chains of St. Peter celebrated on August first is the day Peter was released from prison and his chains removed. This is an extraordinary demonstration of God’s mercy in removing the chains of sin from those who devoutly and faithfully seek to gain the indulgence by completing its requirements.

The conditions to obtain the Plenary Indulgence of the Forgiveness of Assisi is (for oneself or for a departed soul) as follows:
-- Sacramental Confession to be in God’s grace (during eight days before or after.)
-- Participation in the Holy Mass and Eucharist
-- Recitation of The Apostles Creed, Our Father and a prayer for the Pope’s Intention.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Making a Mountain out of a Molehill

Do you ever wonder where popular sayings come from? From Wikipedia, the saying, "To make a mountain out of a molehill" is an English idiom which means to make a big deal out of a minor issue. Hmmphf. The person who came up with that either never actually tried to get rid of a mole, or they knew the cosmic secret that has so far eluded us.

Moles are no minor issue, unless you consider their size which seems an advantage when you are trying to find the one tiny mole responsible for all the destruction. It is not an easy proposition getting rid of these critters. It seems that everyone and their brother (and their cousin) has a special method of mole extraction, but the problem is that none of them so far have worked for us.

Here is what we have tried: stomping down the tunnels, which is kind of fun but they just make new ones. Letting the dogs after them; not a good idea, unless you like your yard looking like a million Claymore mines were detonated all over. Then we tried gopher gas-- this one we're not sure if it works, but it was the most fun. After all, it looks like a stick of dynamite, what's not to like about that? It makes you feel like you're doing something constructive, and it is entertaining to watch the smoke trickle up out of the connected tunnels.

We have tried spreading around the mole repellent, designed to be safe to use around kids and pets, which is great but it also seems to be a little safe for the mole as well. The traps? nada. They are too complicated and if they aren't set right the mole doesn't get caught. We tried flushing them out with the garden hose but we only got waterlogged. Then we added laundry soap which is supposed to kill their food source, at least that's what we are told. I hope it doesn't kill all my plants in the process. This one probably takes a while before you see results, and we want them gone NOW. Then again, we could always just be done with it and dig up the whole entire yard to find the little bugger but then we would have a whole new set of problems!

It has become quite clear to me in this complicated process why the gardener in CaddyShack went a little postal. Don't they say that art imitates real life? Come to think of it, my husband did look a little bit like that gardener this weekend.

Just for fun, I Googled "getting rid of moles" and found some more ideas. Although I do hope the person who posted about putting broken glass down the hole was kidding. I think they were. One person suggested burying a transistor radio set on a heavy metal or rap station. I think he was kidding, too. Or not.

Now about the only thing left besides calling out the exterminator is to try the sonic wands which are supposed to make a high frequency noise that drives them crazy. That would be fair, since they've already done that to us.

Friday, July 25, 2008

A little more time

Oh I can't tell you how relieved I was this morning to read over at BooMama's that the Before and After extravaganza which was scheduled for today has been postponed! I wasn't really ready yet either, having only two of the five projects finished. I mean really, who was I kidding? My craft room has been in need of organization since we moved in here, um, three years ago? And I thought I would finish it in a matter of weeks? yeah, right. For my pantry, I have visions of organized shelves with stackable clear containers, everything perfectly in place but that hasn't happened, what with three kids in there constantly foraging for food and one of them being a pre-teen who is apparently either getting ready for a growth spurt or winter hibernation (maybe both, that would be nice)

I was thinking that signing up for a before/after would force me to actually get it done, but then, life keeps getting in the way. In the past few weeks, we have gone on a summer houseboat trip with another family (which was awesome!); taught the fourth grade for a week at Vacation Bible school; sent the hubby and kids to California; and starting on Monday, we have had a crew of painters changing the color of our pink victorian to a very beautiful green. (I still can be pretty in pink, though!) So, we have had plenty of excuses to not do the projects, even though I have to say that I really need to get busy now that I have some extra time! Thanks Boo Mama for the extension on the deadline!

Monday, July 21, 2008

A Nice Place to Eat

For our anniversary, my husband told me he was taking me to a "nice place to eat." He said I didn't need to dress up or call a babysitter for the kids. I couldn't imagine where this place might be, but he was very secretive and only told me that he had worked out all the details. He picked me up from the neighbor's house, where I had been being kept busy, apparently, so that my husband and kids could transform our house into:

A handsome maitre d' greeted me upon my arrival to "A Nice Place to Eat", as you can see by the sign. Inside, we were taken to the best seats in the house and given extra special attention. As I looked over the menu, I was sipping the house wine and finally decided on the "Chef's Special" of the evening: rib-eye steak, king crab legs, and rice pilaf with a tossed green salad. While we waited for our meal to arrive, we were entertained with a comedy routine (that maitre d', he's talented!) which included a mime impression which was quite good. The chef himself served the meal-- cooked and presented with perfection:

Around the "restaurant", I noticed a large number of bouquets in vases. They were stunningly beautiful. My husband told me that there were 16 dozen in all, one dozen for each year of our marriage. I later gathered the roses together in one place to photograph them:

After dinner, we were escorted to the "movie theater" to watch my favorite show, "I Love Lucy". One of the episodes just happened to be Lucy and Ethel scheming to get their husbands to take them out for dinner and a night on the town for their anniversary. I think they ended up having a great time, but I think I had an even better time.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Daisy's Forever Family 1st Anniversary!!

At the risk of wearing out the SmileBox, I had to make a little montage to celebrate our Daisy's first year anniversary with us. I can't believe a whole year has gone by. If I ever figure out how to upload an edited video to YouTube, I can show you how smart she is. She knows a few tricks and she is a very graceful runner. When she gets zipping around the yard, it makes me laugh so much. They say you don't get something for nothing, but we love our little 'freebie' doggie! In many ways, she's been easier to train and a more well-mannered dog than our expensive little pedigree pooches. I hope you enjoy the pictures. You know, I'm sure you could figure this out but since it took me a while, I just need to add: Click on the button to advance the frame

Click to play Daisy's First Year
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Vacation Bible School 2008

This is what I was busy doing last week! We had so much fun. I taught the 4th grade for the third year in a row. This age is just so great. Our parish uses the Son World series from Liguori publishers. Each day, the kids hear a Bible story and learn how to apply the lesson in their lives. The day is organized by stations, starting with songs; then arts and crafts; classroom; snack; outdoor games and then back to the gym to finish with more songs. It was a fun week for all! I hope you enjoy my slideshow! (try Smilebox-- it's fun and easy!)

Click to play VBS 2008
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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Out of my League

whim·si·cal –adjective
1. given to whimsy or fanciful notions; capricious: a pixyish, whimsical fellow.

2. of the nature of or proceeding from whimsy, as thoughts or actions

3. erratic; unpredictable

Perhaps I can qualify for the third definition. I know that if I had visited some of the other blogs first, I would have never entertained the thought of even thinking that I understood whimiscal in the least bit. These ladies have fabulous taste and they know whimsy. I visited each blog and was in awe of all the talented people that before Katydiddy's party, I did not know. I bookmarked every single one and plan to study them and visit them every day!

I love that vintage doesn't always mean expensive. Nikki, at Whimsy Love, has a way with taking something ordinary like a desk drawer and turning it into something entirely different. I really loved her vintage alphabet idea so much, it is a great idea for a young child's room.

Twinkle Shabby Star at Eye Candy Creations really knocked my socks off! Can you come and stay at my house for a few weeks and help me do my daughter's room? Her rooms are incredible, you really have to click over and see it for yourself. My jaw was on the floor! Her style is impeccable and it doesn't surprise me at all to know that one of her rooms was featured in Romantic Homes magazine.

Sarah from Frills Fluff and Trucks is the winner! Her room is just beautiful. You really need to visit her site.

Be sure to visit them all, I'm sure you'll soon see them sometime soon on Design Star.

Jill at Bella Lulu Gorgeous and Elegant!

Kari & Kijsa at Ask Kari and Kijsa Wow! Speechless.

Thanks ladies for all your inspiration. I am hoping that you are giving a Whimsical 101 seminar in my vicinity sometime soon!! Thanks for the great blog party, Katydiddy! I have so much to aspire to now! I loved each and every room.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some work to do!

Friday, July 11, 2008

The Jungle Room

Today's the big day! It seemed to sneek up on me, but I did manage to get this post up today, even though we aren't quite finished. Here's the project we started in my son's room:

I want to point out that pictures don't seem to really do this space justice. When I took these photos earlier today, I noticed that you don't get a sense of the depth of the space. This is the turret room, so it has a nice bay with five windows and a panoramic view of the front yard. It is a very unique space and it is in my 10 year old's room. What we were trying to create was a feeling of being in the jungle, and setting off the space he could use for reading or computer work.
We took two fairly large willow branches and attached them to the ceiling with hooks, and from that we draped all the greenery. Down the sides we used bamboo and leaves to camoflauge the wires that hook up the twinkly lights. The lanterns dangle from the branches at varying heights and they have little electric flicker candles in them which look cool at night all lit up. Here is another picture: So that is all we have finished, since the rest of the room is a disaster, I'll spare you the visual! I am going to try taking a night shot of it lit up and post that tomorrow. Thanks for stopping by, I hope you liked our little 'jungle'!