Saturday, May 31, 2008

Joseph's Brain Machine

This past week, Joseph built a brain machine with a satellite receiver. It collects information from the satellites and thus makes your brain smarter.


Our Mass Kit arrived and the boys are really excited! We have it all out of the box and have gone over each piece. It is SO nice!!! A friend found a real priest's lectionary at a book sale for me, oo. The boys are going to love it.

We have a special bunny! He has been battling bacterial infections his whole life (Joseph says he is just like him). Henry has been sick again this week and we had to go to the vet again this morning. Joseph is a St. Francis! We've had to feed him critical care food again because he stopped eating for a while....and then we got him to eat a bit of celery.

Just wanted to share these cute pictures of Henry. He has a small baseball that he loves to "throw". Click on the images to see them full size/larger.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Solemnity of Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

A friend sent this image to me in an email today. What a beautiful picture. The boys received their Mass kit and went through the enitre thing piece by piece. They are very excited! We've had a bit of drama today, so please pray for our family if you read this. Sacred Heart of Jesus, protect us.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Happy Memorial day!

We took the day off from school since it is a holiday!

he boys slept in after our long hike Saturday (Blue Ridge Pkwy) and staying up late palying games several nights in a row. We made chocolate cake doughnuts for them (yes, I have a special pan!)Sean mixed the hummingbird food and put it in the hummingbird feeder.......

Joseph helped dad build the form to make a cement landing.......... we worked on weeding and feeding the plants with the compost "tea" from the composter.

And...the day would not be complete without a BBQ.... we made hamburger buns and potato chips.... the boys all love when we make these things from scratch :-)

We hope you all had a great Memorial Day! We enjoyed our weekend off from school...and will start back tomorrow.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Solemnity of Corpus Christi

Today is the Feast of Corpus Christi. The feast of the Body and Blood of Christ. At the request of Pope Urban IV, St. Thomas Aquinas composed the office (prayers)for the feast. The picture above is from EWTN.

As Catholics, we believe that we receive Jesus in the Holy Eucharist. We receive His Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.

Matthew has been really excited the past several weeks as he has been reflecting upon the miracle that takes place at every Mass. He said the other day in speaking about a priest friend, "WOW! It is so cool that Father _____ gets to perform a miracle at every Mass!"

Today is grandma and grandpa's 40th wedding anniversary. When talking about the special feast day today, Joseph said, "WOW! What a cool day to get married! That is so neat that they got to have their wedding on the Feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus!" He was so cute. We explained that they had not gotten married on this feast day, but that this year their anniversary fell on this special day. The priest at church this morning offers Mass at two churches and was a bit late in getting to church. After Mass, Joseph asked why and we explained that he had two churches to take care of. Joseph replied, "We really do need more priests!" Bless his heart.

Here is the Gospel Reading from today's Mass:

John 6: 51 - 58
51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven; if any one eats of this bread, he will live for ever; and the bread which I shall give for the life of the world is my flesh."
52 The Jews then disputed among themselves, saying, "How can this man give us his flesh to eat?"
53 So Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of man and drink his blood, you have no life in you;
54 he who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
55 For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.
56 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.
57 As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats me will live because of me.
58 This is the bread which came down from heaven, not such as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live for ever."

We were in Linville, NC over the weekend and attended Mass at St. Bernadette's. The view is wonderful. Even with the constructon, you can still see the gorgeous view from the windows behind the altar. Here is a picture of St. Bernadette's. Grandfather mountain is in the background and can be seen from inside the church. Click on the image to see a full size picture.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Bishop Joseph

My boys love to pretned to offer Mass. Grandpa and Grandma gave Matthew a video camera two years ago...... Tuesday, when I brought Sean to piano, Matthew stayed with Joseph. Joseph had already been wearing his red robe all day pretending to be Bishop Joseph (and yes, Bisop Joseph still had to do school work!). Matthew recorded their entire Mass, but this is only a 15 second clip because I wanted you to see Joseph's lovely Mitre! This is the reason I was searching for a Mass kit.... When I watched the video with the boys, I noticed the bread they had used was perfectly round, so I said, "Joseph, did you use a cookie cutter?" He replied, "Oh no, I used your scissors and cut it out!" When I had come in through the garage, I noticed that there was a box out and thought it must be the pulpit. No, they had that behind their altar and it was their pretend Tabernacle. And..... he used a pillow for his Mitre.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Strawberry Picking again

While Matthew served at a funeral Mass today, we went strawberry picking. Well, Joseph stayed in the truck to read his book on St. Therese. He said his ankles and legs hurt too much to pick any strawberries. He had been very excited about strawberry picking.....he had wanted to go since last week when we left the farm!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Mass Kit for Children

Mass Kit for Children

Today, the boys turned our basement into a church. They had an altar, chairs for pews and a pulpit all set up. Joseph wore his red robe to offer mass because he was pretending to be a bishop. At the link above, you can purchase a Mass kit for children. They also have patterns for child-size vestments and a child-size monstrance! GREAT stuff.

Here's what the website lists as the contents in the kit:

A must for every Catholic home and classroom. Use for altar boy training, or First Communion preparation. For children ages 3-12. Kit includes

lesson plan book with activity sheets
brass chalice 4 1/2"
brass paten 3 1/4"
brass crucifix 4"
brass and glass sanctuary light 4 1/2"
brass snuffer 10"
brass set of 4 bells
brass match tray
brass censer 5"
glass cruets (pair) 4"
glass finger bowl
glass votive candles (pair)
brass incense boat w/spoon 2 1/4"
incense grains and instant lighting charcoal
patterns for making a wooden altar

The Dangerous Book for Boys

We love this book! The Dangerous Book for Boys covers everything from skinning a rabbit to tying knots.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity

A friend brought this shamrock back from Ireland for us. It is a shamrock from Rock Cashel where St. Patrick is said to have converted the King of Munster in the 5th century by explaining the Blessed Trinity as three persons in One God using a shamrock as his example. St. Patrick is also Sean's favorite saint.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Angela's Shirt

A friend of ours, Angela, had a bone marrow transplant over a year and a half ago. She then had a liver transplant this past December. She entered her drawing into a contest and won! Her design now appears on a shirt that the bone marrow transplant people at Texas Children's Hospital are selling to raise money for their bonemarrow transplant scholarship fund! Here is a picture of Sean and Stanley with Angela's shirt. Click on the images to make them larger. We think Angela is AWESOME! She is a wonderful artist!

Art Class-Pictures from April and May

The boys were working on one project for two months. Using images of tiles from St. Patrick's Cathedral in Ireland, they designed a tiled image similar. The other pictures are pictures of colored eggs. They take art class at Gray Wing.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Perfect Day

Today was such a perfect day! I stayed up until 12:30am finishing the strawberry jam so that the boys could eat it in this morning. I got up and made biscuits from scratch (and even rolled the dough! Something I never do! I usually just make drop biscuits.) While the biscuits were baking, Joseph and I cut flowers from the garden. Peonies, Cat Mint and Roses were looking great today. He made a nice bouquet for the Blessed Mother and his prayer altar (May is the month of Mary). The boys all took their CAT. They seem to enjoy the timed tests! We tried to find info on St. Honore because his feast day is coming up and we were making Gateau St. Honore today. The roast miraculously cooked in the crock pot while we were busy with other things. We found time to make more strawberry smoothies after lunch and had straberries and cream, too! We even found a black widow spider near the compost bin. The boys spent the afternoon playing in the yard.....just an all around perfect day! Tomorrow they have their last art class for the year. We're always sad when the last art class rolls around.... we have such a wonderful teacher with a wonderful art studio. I manged to get all the strawberries cleaned and hulled today. Matthew wants more strawberry muffins. I'm looking for a new recipe! ~smile~ Click on the pictures below to see them full-size.

St. Honore, the Patron Saint of Bakers

St. Honore's (Saint Honoratus of Amiens) feast day is May 16th. Today we made Gateau St. Honore to celebrate his feast day a bit early with the strawberries we picked yesterday. He was born in Port-le-Grand near Amiens to a noble family. We've been looking for more information on him today, but have not found too much.

The cake is a layer of Pastry puff with Pate a Choux (paht ah SHOO) baked on top. The filling is made of Pastry cream mixed with whipped cream and topped with fruit. I took a short cut and made my faux pastry puff dough instead of making pastry dough. fauz pastry dough comes out nearly as flaky. Here's what our Gateau St. Honore looked like:

Black Widow Spider

Black Widow spiders like my composter! We found this one there today. Last year we found at least 8 Black Widow Spiders in our yard!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Flat Stanley is still visiting we took him to piano and recorded Sean playing a song.

Strawberry Smoothies

We made fruit smoothies as soon as we got back. We'll make jam, freeze some for fruit smoothies later..... make strawberry shortcake (I have a special shortcake pan and a great shortcake recipe!). We've got a lot of strawberries. I have to move fast because I am supposed to spend tomorrow at jury duty, unless I get out of it somehow.