Archive - March 2009

Lion and Lamb
Rainbow Scarf
So There We Were…
Morning Has Broken
Cover Me…
Answers, I’ve Got ’em!
Portrait of the Blogger in a Pink Hat
Another Snow Day

Rainbow Scarf

One month, almost to the day I cast on, I’ve finished my rainbow scarf! Entrelac is surprisingly easy, so it was a good mindless project for watching TV with.  I got it all finished and blocked and then it got just cold enough to be able to wear it at least once before packing it away for the season.

So There We Were…

…leaving the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, Philip and I, our friends that we are sponsoring into the Church, our parish priest and one of the members of our church who was there for support.  The three military men were in uniform, looking very handsome indeed.  We were just walking along the front of the basilica when one of the men said, “Newt Gingrich just got into that white car.”

Parked in front of the basilica were two tour buses and in between the two buses was a white car, but from where we were, we couldn’t see who was in it.

After a round of, “Really?”, “That white car up there?” and “No way!”, I said, “Let’s catch up and look.” So we sped up a bit and as we passed the white car, we turned to look at the passenger.

And lo and behold! there was Newt Gingrich himself.

We did what any grown up would do – we grinned and waved.  Newt waved back and one of the guys started to walk closer to the car.  And Newt did what anyone who finds himself being peered at by three guys in uniform, two women and a priest would do – he rolled down the window.

So all three of the guys rushed up to shake his hand.  I would have, too, except I was wearing heels and I would have hand to run to get to the car in a timely manner.  I shook Philip’s hand right afterward, though, so it was almost as good.

Or course, we were all wondering just what he had been doing at the basilica and when we got home, I looked on the internet.  Turns out, Newt Gingrich is becoming Catholic and was participating in the Rite of Election himself.  Cool.

Morning Has Broken

Thank you for all your kind words, prayers and support.  It’s nice to know that if you’re going to fall apart for the whole internet to see, that people will be understanding.

But like the song says, morning has broken, and spring has arrived and I’m doing much better.  It seems like I should get rid of my notebook, but I can’t.  It’s a snapshot of how my life once was and to throw it away would be to throw out a huge part of me.  But it needs to find a home.  After some thought, I know where to put it, and it’ll be safe and I won’t ever stumble upon it accidentally.

So…the shamrock cookies turned out well!  Rolling them out thicker definitely helped and so did using a dough board.  I’ve got yucky linoleum counters, so I use a dough board with a cloth for pie crusts, it just never occurred to me to use it with cookie dough.  Duh.  The combination was a winner and I was able to roll out all the dough, cut out and bake all the cookies in under an hour.

And I promise to finish the rest of my Rite of Election story this weekend!!!


I was going to tell you how my shamrock cookies turned out.  And about what happend after the Rite of Election all those days ago.  And about how one of my friends is moving away in a couple of weeks, and we’re moving in a few months, but I can’t because I’ve been laid out flat.

I’ve been sorting through the house, getting ready for that move because it’ll be here before you know it, and that’s how I got hit upside the head and had to send the kids out to play and started typing in run-on sentences.

I found The Notebook.  No, not the novel, but The Notebook I had to start keeping when Rebecca died.  I couldn’t remember anything at all and there were just so many details to keep track of, so I had to write it all down.  And I kept that notebook with me always, so it became a journal when I had too many thoughts in my head.  The worst sorts of memories are in this notebook, funeral details, the wording of the memorial service invitation, notes and questions for the hospital’s attempt to stonewall explain the situation.

It’s a generic, green steno notepad, but when I picked it up I was pretty sure what was inside.  I should not have read past the first page. I should have closed it and moved on. Instead, I skimmed through it.  It was like breaking my heart all over again.

So here I am again, feeling like I’m going to fly apart into a million pieces and trying not to throw my shoe across the room because I’m really angry and I can’t fix it and nobody can and death sucks and the only reason I’m not going to throw my shoe isn’t out of a maturity I’ve gained through life’s experience, but because it is a wooden Hannah Andersson clog and it would break whatever it hit.

And now I have no good ending for this post, because really, what else is there to say?

Cover Me…

I’m going in.

Yes, it’s that time again.  The crock pot is happily cooking our corned beef and cabbage, the children are finished with school, lunch has been eaten and I can no longer avoid making shamrock cookies.

I don’t know why I do this to myself.

I have a friend who is gifted in hospitality.  She has 6 children, homeschools and otherwise puts Martha Stewart to shame.  I was telling her all about how much I hate making sugar cookies, and I still make them a couple of times a year to torture myself make my children happy.  I’m just that kind of mom.  I let them watch a Rollie Pollie Ollie movie during the Disney Channel’s Movie Time Monday yesterday, instead of finishing school, too.  I so totally rock.

What was I saying?

Oh yeah, my friend, the super baker.  She thinks I might be rolling my cookie dough out too thin. She doesn’t live on base anymore, so I can’t have her just pop on over to show me how to properly roll out cookie dough. I’m pretty sure she’d do that for me, but she’s now 20 minutes away.  Some friend.  Just because her house had mold issues and rats in the backyard, you’d think she’d have stuck it out in anticipation of my cookie making needs.  Not so much.

So I’ve stalled long enough.  The children already caught me mixing up green dough, so there’s no turning back now.  If I survive, I’ll be back to tell you the last part of our Rite of Election Story.

Answers, I’ve Got ’em!

My blogging friend, Sandy, asked me to help her better understand my post about the Rite of Election.  First, I do have to apologize because I sometimes forget that hello, not everyone is Catholic. Just like everyone is not in the military and will not understand when I tell you that yesterday my husband went to the TMO because we are PCS’ing, but it’s to early to contact the TLF.

So I had another blogging dilema. Let someone else worry about offending the Brits, the growing nanny state and the price of tea in China because I’ve got readers needing answers.  And pretty yarn to knit up. Focus, everyone, focus!

Really, though- I wanted to make sure I explained the Catholic jargon in a way that would still let the original story flow.  I was going to hyper link, I was going to provide a glossary at the end.  And then Sandy said, “um, how about just a website?”

I tend to overthink a bit.

So here you go Sandy, and anyone else I left scratching their heads.  Here is a Glossary of Terms for the Rite of Christian Initiation (RCIA). It’s part of a much larger article about the entire process of RCIA.


Philip and I were asked by two of our friends to sponsor them as they enter the Catholic Church this Easter.  Of course, this is an honor and a privilege for us – and a very unique experience.  We each have godchildren and we’ve both been Confirmation sponsors, but this is the first time we’ve been godparents/sponsors together.

So the four of us spent pretty much all of last Sunday together participating in the Rite of Sending at our home parish here on base, then at the Rite of Election at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception.  All I can say is…amazing.

I’d never been to the Basilica, so I was immediately awestruck by the building itself.  The interior rivaled any basilica or cathedral we’ve seen in Europe.  I cannot even begin to do it justice in trying to describe it with words.  I didn’t bring a camera, so I can’t share any pictures, sadly.  Our homeschool group is taking a tour next month, so I’ll get some pictures then.

The Rite itself – again, wow.  There were 5 Bishops in attendance – the Archbishop of DC, 3 of his auxiliary bishops and the Bishop of the Archdiocese for the Military Services.  Incidentally, ours was the only church that identified itself as being from a military base, so the bishop was probably there just for us!  The sheer number of people being baptized or coming into full communion with the Church was so inspiring, and makes you think that maybe our country really isn’t going to hell in a hand basket after all.  Each of the catechumens who will be baptized at Easter were called by name and were presented by their godparent to the Archbishop.  He seemed to be having quite a good time, shaking hands and smiling the whole time.  They lined up on the in front of the altar, where they answered questions as a group.  After they returned to their seats, the candidates for Confirmation were by parish and went up with their sponsors.  We didn’t get to meet the Archbishop, but we filled the enormous chancel.  We were one of the first parishes called up, so we stood to the very back.  It was an amazing view, looking out over the sea of humanity, and also taking in the beautiful artwork surrounding us. We will probably never again be that close to the altar of the Basilica.

I have to say that it was actually a lot of fun.  Our military men in their uniforms looked quite handsome and distinguished, and we had seats about 5 rows from the front.  I got little crick in my neck from looking up at the Archbishop during his homily, we were that close.  It was fun sharing the experience with the others from our parish, too.

I do have another side story to tell about something that happened as we were leaving.  But it’s a story for another day…

Portrait of the Blogger in a Pink Hat

My most recently completed knitting project – a pink, cabled beret.  I’ve read that slouchy berets are all the rage out in California, and you know me – always on the cutting edge of fashion.

Here it is, flat on the table.

I’d never done cables before, but they were surprisingly easy.  I added an additional round to the pattern to accomodate my big head and thick hair, and also to allow the hat to come down and cover my ears.  The next time I wear it, I’ll probably be in Colorado.  Barring an early Spring snowstorm here, of course.  One can hope.

Another Snow Day

Subtitle: School, schmool!

We rarely get more than an inch or two of snow at time around here, so I let Boo and Pumpkin Girl have another shortened school day in favor going sledding.  Let’s just call it extra gym class. :)

Our formally fluffy front porch…

looked like this when we headed out:

That’s mostly ice, just for the record.

Much fun was had by all…

We were joined by my friend’s children, who are also my children’s friends.  They had races…

and some wipe-outs.

The boys engaged in some guerrilla sledding, which involved shoving off down the hill and trying to hit each other with snow balls.  In this picture, Boo’s buddy gets him good.

I got a chance to sled, too, but mostly I just took pictures.

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