Christmas 2016

Christmas 2016
God Bless Our Troops

Click on the cabin below to see our family website.

Click on the cabin below to see our family website.
We love what we do!

January 31, 2009

The first month of 2009 draws to a close. I can't believe it's gone by that fast!
It doesn't look as if winter is leaving any time soon. Let's just store up these cold day memories to look back on in the dog days of August.

I haven't accomplished as much as I had hoped this month. Too much time on the computer. I've got to start setting a timer

Word of the day:
Memorial of Saint John Bosco, priest
Mk 4:35-41

On that day, as evening drew on, Jesus said to his disciples:
“Let us cross to the other side.”
Leaving the crowd, they took Jesus with them in the boat just as he was.
And other boats were with him.
A violent squall came up and waves were breaking over the boat,
so that it was already filling up.
Jesus was in the stern, asleep on a cushion.
They woke him and said to him,
“Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?”
He woke up,
rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Quiet! Be still!”
The wind ceased and there was great calm.
Then he asked them, “Why are you terrified?
Do you not yet have faith?”
They were filled with great awe and said to one another,
“Who then is this whom even wind and sea obey?”

God bless our troops!


Friday, January 30, 2009

Once upon a time there was a little girl. We'll call her Beeps. Beeps was a mischievous little girl and liked to play jokes on her siblings - particularly her little brother, Super Sam. One day Beeps' mother went to lunch with the parish staff at their favorite Mexican restaurant. Beeps' mom liked to order the hot green peppers. The ones that burned both ends of the body. That particular day Beeps' mom came home with a doggie bag from Tachos. In it were half a wet burrito and some of the hot green peppers. Beeps loved Mexican food and asked if she could have the burrito. Beeps' mom said yes, but warned her not to eat the peppers because they were very hot. Beeps ate the burrito but left the peppers. In walks little Super Sam.

"Super Sam," said Beeps, "you should taste these yummy pickles."

Super Sam was a trusting little boy (although he was soon to learn the tough lessons of his position in the family as the youngest and the only boy) and he ate 2 of the "pickles." Super Sam's mom could hear the screaming from the other end of the house.

Fast forward to last night. Little Clayton and Claire ate dinner with us. We had McMoeggey Cheeseburgers. As Clayton will tell you, McMoeggey Cheeseburgers do not come with seeds on top of the bun, nor with the grand prize - pickles.

Now, Grandpa Buggabugg likes to eat hot peppers with his dinner. After dinner, Beeps, the mommy of Clayton and Claire, came to pick them up to take them home. Little Claire likes to eat. After putting on her boots, she took one last trip to the table. There she spied "pickles" on Grandpa Buggabugg's plate. Little Claire likes pickles and she didn't get any on her McMoeggey Cheeseburger. Before Grandma Buggabugg realized what little Claire was doing, little Claire had put a "pickle" in her mouth.

Ah, the sins of the mother are visited upon the daughter. Poor little Claire.

Word of the day:
Friday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 4:26-34

Jesus said to the crowds:
“This is how it is with the Kingdom of God;
it is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land
and would sleep and rise night and day
and the seed would sprout and grow,
he knows not how.
Of its own accord the land yields fruit,
first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear.
And when the grain is ripe, he wields the sickle at once,
for the harvest has come.”
He said,
“To what shall we compare the Kingdom of God,
or what parable can we use for it?
It is like a mustard seed that, when it is sown in the ground,
is the smallest of all the seeds on the earth.
But once it is sown, it springs up and becomes the largest of plants
and puts forth large branches,
so that the birds of the sky can dwell in its shade.”
With many such parables
he spoke the word to them as they were able to understand it.
Without parables he did not speak to them,
but to his own disciples he explained everything in private.

God bless our troops!


Thursday, January 29, 2009

On my other blog I wrote about being in a bit of a funk. That seems to be gone today. I have my day planned out and things always seem to go better when I do that.

I had Mass with the CCD kids last night. The song choices weren't on my all time favorite list, but the kids loved them and sang them loudly - always a good thing. The homily was on the Gospel of the day - God's word and the soil. The kids seemed to grasp that very well.
Yesterday something happened that has happened in a long time. Harold's cousin and her dad stopped in. They were out visiting people and we were on the route. If they had stopped 2 months ago, we wouldn't have been here. As we sat and visited, I tried to think back to how long ago it had been since we had been dropped in on by relatives on a week day. It was great!!
My agenda for the day -
Zone work - Living room
Prayer quilt
Dungeon - oops - workroom - I need to check my inventory for the Syrup Festival
Thursday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 4:21-25

Jesus said to his disciples,
“Is a lamp brought in to be placed under a bushel basket
or under a bed,
and not to be placed on a lampstand?
For there is nothing hidden except to be made visible;
nothing is secret except to come to light.
Anyone who has ears to hear ought to hear.”
He also told them, “Take care what you hear.
The measure with which you measure will be measured out to you,
and still more will be given to you.
To the one who has, more will be given;
from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.

God bless our troops!


Wednesday, January 28, 2009

I can't believe that we are closing in on the end of January. As a retiree from the school system, I am not allowed to work or even volunteer at the school for 30 days from my retirement date. I am scheduled to sub on February 13, but after that I think I won't do it any more. We'll see how it goes. To me it seems like it would be like tearing off a scab. I should probably just make a clean break from the school.
I have a lot to do today. I did finish cleaning out the "toy" corner. I didn't take a pic because it really wasn't that bad and it doesn't look all that different. On my slate of tasks is:

1. More copyright permissions to be sought. I got permission for about half of the songs we will be using on our church CD.

2. Get cantor folders ready and practice for tonight's Faith formation Mass.

3. Work on farm taxes

4. Work on our business taxes

5. do some work in the dungeon - ooops - workroom

6. Work on prayer quilt

That should keep me out of trouble for a while.
Word of the day:
Memorial of Saint Thomas Aquinas, priest and doctor of the Church
Mk 4:1-20

On another occasion, Jesus began to teach by the sea.
A very large crowd gathered around him
so that he got into a boat on the sea and sat down.
And the whole crowd was beside the sea on land.
And he taught them at length in parables,
and in the course of his instruction he said to them,
“Hear this! A sower went out to sow.
And as he sowed, some seed fell on the path,
and the birds came and ate it up.
Other seed fell on rocky ground where it had little soil.
It sprang up at once because the soil was not deep.
And when the sun rose, it was scorched and it withered for lack of roots.
Some seed fell among thorns, and the thorns grew up and choked it
and it produced no grain.
And some seed fell on rich soil and produced fruit.
It came up and grew and yielded thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold.”
He added, “Whoever has ears to hear ought to hear.” And when he was alone,
those present along with the Twelve
questioned him about the parables.
He answered them,
“The mystery of the Kingdom of God has been granted to you.
But to those outside everything comes in parables, so that
they may look and see but not perceive,
and hear and listen but not understand,
in order that they may not be converted and be forgiven.”
Jesus said to them, “Do you not understand this parable?
Then how will you understand any of the parables?
The sower sows the word.
These are the ones on the path where the word is sown.
As soon as they hear, Satan comes at once
and takes away the word sown in them.
And these are the ones sown on rocky ground who,
when they hear the word, receive it at once with joy.
But they have no roots; they last only for a time.
Then when tribulation or persecution comes because of the word,
they quickly fall away.
Those sown among thorns are another sort.
They are the people who hear the word,
but worldly anxiety, the lure of riches,
and the craving for other things intrude and choke the word,
and it bears no fruit.
But those sown on rich soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it
and bear fruit thirty and sixty and a hundredfold.”

God bless our troops!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Got my soap made last night. This batch turned out a lovely violet.

I can't wait to cut it.

I need to get down to that workroom and get things straightened out a bit. I've been having way too much fun with my WII fit and I need to get on the stick around here.

We flybabies are still in the living room. Here is my area of concentration today. The shelves aren't too bad, but I need to straighten up the toy area - especially since Claire prefers the WII to the toybox these days.

Deacon John called. No RCIA tonight, but I have to go into town for a liturgy meeting. On these cold days, I just prefer to stay home.

Word of the day:
Tuesday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 3:31-35

The mother of Jesus and his brothers arrived at the house.
Standing outside, they sent word to Jesus and called him.
A crowd seated around him told him,
“Your mother and your brothers and your sisters
are outside asking for you.”
But he said to them in reply,
“Who are my mother and my brothers?”
And looking around at those seated in the circle he said,
“Here are my mother and my brothers.
For whoever does the will of God
is my brother and sister and mother.”

Thoughts from the cornfield:
This is one of the passages I had to grow into. It took me a long time to realize that Jesus was not disrespecting his mother and his relatives. He was drawing all of us into the divine family - and blood is not the admittance ticket (at least not our blood anyway) - we are family by our willingness to do God's will.

God bless our troops!


Monday, January 26, 2009

It's 3 degrees out today. Brrrrrr. Makes yesterday's 7 degrees seem tropical.
Remember that batch of soap that turned tan because I put the tea in too early? I put most of it up for sale on Ebay in one big lot. It has 2 bids on it and the auction ends in 9 minutes.
The 22 bars are going for $14.20 right now. Someone is going to get a great deal!!
Soap auction
Today I'm going to be making another batch of that same soap. For all of you Flybabies - today we are in the Living Room/Family Room. I know where I will be decluttering. We have a huge book case on one wall of our living room. It is piled with DVDs, videos, and stuff that doesn't make me smile. That is my job for today. Here are the before pics.

The whole bookcase

Today's area of concentration.

3:18 pm update:

Can you see a difference?

Word of the day:
Memorial of Saint Timothy and Saint Titus, bishops
Mk 3:22-30

The scribes who had come from Jerusalem said of Jesus,
“He is possessed by Beelzebul,” and
“By the prince of demons he drives out demons.”
Summoning them, he began to speak to them in parables,
“How can Satan drive out Satan?
If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.
And if a house is divided against itself,
that house will not be able to stand.
And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided,
he cannot stand;
that is the end of him.
But no one can enter a strong man’s house to plunder his property
unless he first ties up the strong man.
Then he can plunder his house.
Amen, I say to you, all sins and all blasphemies
that people utter will be forgiven them.
But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit
will never have forgiveness,
but is guilty of an everlasting sin.”
For they had said, “He has an unclean spirit.”

God bless our troops!


Sunday, January 25, 2009

It's 7 degrees outside. Spring is going to feel very good this year. I was looking at running logs from previous years. I pretty much ran through the whole winter. I don't run when the temps are in single digits. I haven't been out for a couple of months now.

Anna is making dinner today and then we will be taking turns on the WII again. It's almost as much fun to watch others as it is to be doing it yourself. Little Claire still has the record for bouncing soccer balls off of her head.

Word of the day
Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
Mk 1:14-20

After John had been arrested,
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God:
"This is the time of fulfillment.
The kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the gospel."

As he passed by the Sea of Galilee,
he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea;
they were fishermen.
Jesus said to them,
"Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men."
Then they abandoned their nets and followed him.
He walked along a little farther
and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John.
They too were in a boat mending their nets.
Then he called them.
So they left their father Zebedee in the boat
along with the hired men and followed him.

God bless our troops!


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Went up town with Melisa and the kids yesterday, but the deals weren't that great for me. There was a time when I was the Coupon Queen, but that hasn't been for a long time. I would like to get back into doing that. When the kids were small, I was into refunding. Refunding was quite the deal for a stay at home mom. I would send in box tops and get back money or premiums. People saved their labels for me and I did quite well. I paid for a new stove, carpeting, had gifts for all occasions, and spent maybe 25 dollars a week after coupons. Refunding has changed over the years and is much more challenging. Now you have to send in the cash register receipt with the labels. I gradually drifted away from it. Now my daughters are doing it - not the refunding, but the couponing. And they are very good at it. It's fun to see them saving money. Anna can bring home 2 carts of groceries and after coupons have paid maybe 20 dollars at the most. It takes work and ingenuity, but it is totally worth it.
Well, my timer is ringing. Time to go put in some time on my new toy - the WII FIT. See you on the other blog.

Word of the day
Memorial of Saint Francis de Sales, bishop and doctor of the Church
Mk 3:20-21

Jesus came with his disciples into the house.
Again the crowd gathered,
making it impossible for them even to eat.
When his relatives heard of this they set out to seize him,
for they said, “He is out of his mind.”

Thoughts from the cornfield:
Jesus' relatives reacted in a totally human manner. Put yourself in their position. Would you react differently? Hindsight is 20/20 and yet even with hindsight, we don't always get it either.

God bless our troops!


Friday, January 23, 2009

So Kelli emails me and tells me about all the great deals she and Melisa got when they went shopping last night. So in a little bit, Melisa is going to help me get the same deals. :) Now that I'm retired, I have to watch my pennies a lot more closely.

Word of the day:
Friday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 3:13-19

Jesus went up the mountain and summoned those whom he wanted
and they came to him.
He appointed Twelve, whom he also named Apostles,
that they might be with him
and he might send them forth to preach
and to have authority to drive out demons:
He appointed the Twelve:
Simon, whom he named Peter;
James, son of Zebedee,
and John the brother of James, whom he named Boanerges,
that is, sons of thunder;
Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew,
Matthew, Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus;
Thaddeus, Simon the Cananean,
and Judas Iscariot who betrayed him.

God bless our troops!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Ahhhh, I love Thursdays. Most Thursdays I don't have to be anywhere. I am way behind on laundry so I will be finishing that up. I also need to get started on the farm taxes. Not fun, but definitely better than when Harold and I were first married and had no computer spreadsheets to work with. Back then we had an adding machine and a farm record book in which to figure expenses. It had columns and columns on each page. The columns had to gibe vertically and horizontally. I dreaded tax time. At the end of January I knew there would come a morning when Harold would ceremoniously dump boxes of receipts on the kitchen table and announce that it was time to get the taxes ready. He would sort the receipts into piles corresponding to the columns in the book. When that was done it was my job to enter them in the book. Then the columns had to be added . . . and reconciled . . . and added again. Complete and total nightmare. We finally ended up just entering any total that came up twice.

These days when couples get married in the church they meet with the priest several times. There are high falootin' Meyer's Briggs tests, compatibility tests, psychological tests - all designed to see if this couple can make it in a world where 50% of marriages end in divorce - that is if people even bother to get married any more. Phoooey! I say stick that couple in a room with a zillion farm receipts, an adding machine, and a farm record book. Let them figure out farm taxes. Then, if they survive that, have them wallpaper a room together. If they emerge without injury or death they are good to go.
I finally listed the cold process soap I made a few weeks ago. Things are slow on the website. They alway are this time of year. This soap is scented with Honeysuckle which a lot of people like. I'm not much for the floral scents but people are asking for them so . . .

My favs are the bakery scents. I made some Country Cinnamon Bun candles the other day and those smell great!
I'm headed over to the other blog. Have a great day.

Word of the day:
Thursday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 3:7-12

Jesus withdrew toward the sea with his disciples.
A large number of people followed from Galilee and from Judea.
Hearing what he was doing,
a large number of people came to him also from Jerusalem,
from Idumea, from beyond the Jordan,
and from the neighborhood of Tyre and Sidon.
He told his disciples to have a boat ready for him because of the crowd,
so that they would not crush him.
He had cured many and, as a result, those who had diseases
were pressing upon him to touch him.
And whenever unclean spirits saw him they would fall down before him
and shout, “You are the Son of God.”
He warned them sternly not to make him known.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
Throughout the Gospels there are warnings from Jesus not to tell anyone of his miracles. And those warnings are always stern. And they always seem to have the opposite effect. I often wonder if that was the point.

God bless our troops!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

"Tis a balmy 13 degrees out today. Wow! Could this be our January thaw?
As I move about the house I find reminders of my little Tweetle Bugs. Claire left her "cell phone" in the bedroom. Clay left several pictures of his artwork on the refrigerator. The crayon box is open and sitting in the middle of the living room along with several coloring books. The kids don't get as many toys out now that they are older. They used to take the toybox and dump it out on the living room floor. Now they head for the "craft" bucket.

Claire loves to watch the family DVDs that I have been making with Harold's flip video. She won't watch "Christmas at Aunt Judy's house," though. She was traumatized by the visit we had from Santa. He was a little scary. He had a very strange accent - a mix of Russian and Middle East. I put the DVD in yesterday and found Claire hiding behind the chair in tears. I quickly took it out and put a "friendlier" video in.

I'm still getting used to this new lifestyle. I had a whole hour and a half to work on the prayer quilt yesterday. I felt rich.

I visited the school yesterday to drop off an order to the gal who took my place. I had mixed feelings. I really don't miss the job. I think what is hitting me is that 13 years of my life went by just like that. It seems like only yesterday that the superintendent called to tell me that I had the job at the school. So many changes took place in that time - I graduated from Davenport, 3 kids graduated from High School, all 4 graduated from college, 3 got married, all 4 bought houses and have moved out, 1 had children, 1 more is expecting. It boggles my mind how fast it goes. So when I go into the living room and see signs that children have been there, I am sometimes momentarily transported back in time - to when our kids were little - and I feel caught in a time warp. I almost expect to see McRudy, Beeps, Neener Bean, and Super Sam the Baby Man come running around the corner - and then I hear the back door open and it is Sam the grown up man stopping in to use our internet to check an online car auction. Time is fleeting.
Today is an anniversary of sorts. Today I think of Joseph. He was a surprise baby and he was due on January 21. We lost him through a miscarriage on August 28. Joan, Gil, and MaryAnn gave us a seedling fir tree in memory. That tree is huge now. Joseph would have been 16 today. Yes, time is fleeting.
Word of the day:
Memorial of Saint Agnes, Virgin and martyr
Mk 3:1-6

Jesus entered the synagogue.
There was a man there who had a withered hand.
They watched Jesus closely
to see if he would cure him on the sabbath
so that they might accuse him.
He said to the man with the withered hand,
“Come up here before us.”
Then he said to the Pharisees,
“Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil,
to save life rather than to destroy it?”
But they remained silent.
Looking around at them with anger
and grieved at their hardness of heart,
Jesus said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.”
He stretched it out and his hand was restored.
The Pharisees went out and immediately took counsel
with the Herodians against him to put him to death.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
I'm wondering if among the numerous laws and precepts that the Pharisees were so familiar with, there was anything about mercy and compassion. What would your reaction be if you witnessed a healing such as this?

God bless our troops!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Our little Tweetle Bugs stayed over last night.
Clay loves to make pictures:

And Claire likes to eat Grandpa's cereal:

In light of today's events, this pro-life message is especially poignant;

Word of the day
Tuesday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 2:23-28

As Jesus was passing through a field of grain on the sabbath,
his disciples began to make a path while picking the heads of grain.
At this the Pharisees said to him,
“Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?”
He said to them,
“Have you never read what David did
when he was in need and he and his companions were hungry?
How he went into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest
and ate the bread of offering that only the priests could lawfully eat,
and shared it with his companions?”
Then he said to them,
“The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath.
That is why the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”

Thoughts from the cornfield:
What do we give to God? Now look at those offerings and imagine them piled at the foot of the cross. Would that cause us to re-think our gift?
God bless our troops!


This just in

I was just reading through some blogs while waiting for my two little cuties to arrive. (Clayton and Claire are spending the night with Nama and Bapa) Ellen, from
It's A Goldens Life ~ This Time Just For Me is giving away a beautiful set of her handmade candles in honor of the opening of her Etsy shop.

If you love primitives, head on over to her blog and leave a comment to enter the give-away.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Today is the first official day of both Harold and I being solely a farm family. We are adjusting our routines. I think it will be easier now because with 2 of us being here during the day, there is more structure than when I am home alone. Harold got up and did his stint on the treadmill and then wanted the computer. So I will now do my workout during his computer time and then blog after my workout. This is better because then I have less time to talk myself out of a workout.
Today I get to meet with the prayer quilt ladies. This is a ministry that one of our ladies brought with her from her former church. I've always wanted to be a part of this but couldn't because of work. So today I get to go. I am looking forward to it. Some time today I will need to get a batch of candles made. Clay and Claire are coming to spend the night. That's always fun. This will be the first time they've ever been able to come on a week night.
Here is the Flylady Flight Plan for today from Kelly:

Missions for Zone 4 - The Master Bedroom and the Great Closet Clean Out
Zone 4: Mission #1 Monday

Dear Friends:

This week we are in the Master Bedroom. Today I want you to spend 15 minutes under your bed! LOL! Take this time to get the things out from under the bed that you have shoved under there during a mad stash and dash through the house.15 minutes might not be enough, but for today, just try to put a dent in the stuff that you have put there. Things that just don't belong. If you don't have anything under your bed, then grab a vacuum cleaner or broom and get the dust
bunnies that have been multiplying under there. Have fun with this, just 15 minutes, set you time and go go go!
Great Closet Clean Out Mission:
We are going to throw open the doors of our closets and go after the stuff that has been accumulating! With BabySteps, 27 Fling Boogies and 15 minutes we are going to clear out the clutter!

Today we are going after the clothes that have piled up in the floor of the closet. Anything that has fallen off the hangers or has been stashed. Set your timer for 15 minutes. If you have tossed a laundry basket full of clean clothes in the bottom of the closet, work on putting it away. Do not hang up anything that you do not love or wear. If you have things that are too big, too small, worn out or just plain ugly - toss it! Don't laugh, I have gone into my closet
before and found things that were just ugly and wondered what in the heck was I thinking when I actually spent money on this!! Toss it! Do not waste precious time or energy hanging up or putting away things that you do not wear, do not love or things that don't fit. Place then in a bag to give away or throw them out if they are not worthy of
blessing someone else with! Set that timer for 15 minutes. Remember how FlyLady decluttered her guest room 15 minutes at a time! You may go back for another 15 minutes if you want or need to. Do not pull out more than you can do at one 15 minute segment!

Get to it Flybabies!!! I'm off to my master bedroom.
5:15 pm update:
I totally enjoyed the Prayer Quilt meeting. I brought home some fabric to piece a quilt for an old friend. I also bought the pieces for Claire's quilt. I can't wait to start on that.

I am so tickled to be able to quilt in the winter. I am finishing off some quilts I started last summer. Here is one whose binding I am tacking down. I also still need to finish hand quilting it. It is from Eleanor Burns' "Christmas at Bear's Paw Ranch." I loooooooooove Eleanor Burns.


Word of the day:
Monday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 2:18-22

The disciples of John and of the Pharisees were accustomed to fast.
People came to Jesus and objected,
“Why do the disciples of John and the disciples of the Pharisees fast,
but your disciples do not fast?”
Jesus answered them,
“Can the wedding guests fast while the bridegroom is with them?
As long as they have the bridegroom with them they cannot fast.
But the days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them,
and then they will fast on that day.
No one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak.
If he does, its fullness pulls away,
the new from the old, and the tear gets worse.
Likewise, no one pours new wine into old wineskins.
Otherwise, the wine will burst the skins,
and both the wine and the skins are ruined.
Rather, new wine is poured into fresh wineskins.”

Thoughts from the cornfield:
Anyone who has ever worked with fabrics will understand the analogy that Jesus is making here. Today I brought home some fabric to piece a quilt. I will pre-wash (and therefore pre-shrink) all of it because I don't know the fiber content or whether it has been washed before. This is necessary because if a piece of unwashed fabric is sewn to one that has been laundered, the unwashed piece - if it is cotton - will shrink and the other piece will not. Makes for a mighty unsightly quilt. And in the case of wineskins, an unfortunate waste of wine.

God bless our troops!


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Today we have another retirement celebratory dinner. The temps are a balmy 13 degrees. Wow, feels like a heat wave after the last week of sub-zero temps.
I have kind of felt like my ability to set a routine has been on hold until Harold was retired from his second job. Before we took jobs off the farm, our big meal - dinner - was at noon. That went out the window with both of us gone. Cooking kind of went out the window too. We each got in the habit of eating when we got home from work. It will be nice to go back to being a farm family again. Since Harold farms with his brother and nephew and with our son, I will have people sitting around the table at noon once again. That will be nice.

Word of the day
Second Sunday in Ordinary Time
Jn 1:35-42

John was standing with two of his disciples,
and as he watched Jesus walk by, he said,
“Behold, the Lamb of God.”
The two disciples heard what he said and followed Jesus.
Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them,
“What are you looking for?”
They said to him, “Rabbi” — which translated means Teacher —,
“where are you staying?”
He said to them, “Come, and you will see.”
So they went and saw where Jesus was staying,
and they stayed with him that day.
It was about four in the afternoon.
Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter,
was one of the two who heard John and followed Jesus.
He first found his own brother Simon and told him,
“We have found the Messiah” — which is translated Christ —.
Then he brought him to Jesus.
Jesus looked at him and said,
“You are Simon the son of John; you will be called Cephas” — which is translated Peter.

God bless our troops!


Saturday, January 17, 2009

It's not very often that a I miss a day on my blogs. Yesterday was just a little insane. On Friday mornings I have Mass with the kids at St. Mary. That went fine. After that Fr. Kevin and I met with the sound guy to see what needs to be done with the church sound system. That meeting went longer than I'd planned because I still needed to take down some of the trees from our Christmas decor. First tree - the tree came down okay, but it took me over an hour to untangle the lights. By that time I had to get over to the hospital for my yearly mammogram. I got there and realized my planner with the order was sitting in the church. The registration gal tried to find record of it on the computer. Nope - she couldn't find it so I went back to the church to get it. During that time Melisa had called and asked if I could pick up a box at the post office. I went back to the hospital for my mammo - was out by 2:oo - not bad considering. Then I went to the post office and back to the church to take down more trees. The rest of the committee is doing the big trees tonight, but I can't be there. I couldn't fit the trees in the boxes and I felt bad about leaving them for the other group, but it was 4:00 already and I hadn't eaten since breakfast.

Now I know I can afford to miss a few, but my blood sugar can't so I stopped at RiteAid and bought a protein bar. I know it's not the best choice, but it was much better than the cheeseburger Happy Meal with a chocolate shake that I was trying to justify. It's a good thing I stopped because I forgot that I needed to pick up a prescription. Then I headed to the post office, the bank, and to Walmart. (We're out of Hillbilly bread - I am a terrible wife. LOL!) Stopped at Melisa's to drop off the package and then home to find out that we were going out to celebrate Harold's retirement. Soooooo, I never got the chance to blog yesterday. Sorry, for those of you that were looking for it.
I did not get all of my cleaning done the other day, but I did get a start. Today I try and finish.


Word of the day
Saturday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 2:13-17

Jesus went out along the sea.
All the crowd came to him and he taught them.
As he passed by, he saw Levi, son of Alphaeus,
sitting at the customs post.
Jesus said to him, “Follow me.”
And he got up and followed Jesus.
While he was at table in his house,
many tax collectors and sinners sat with Jesus and his disciples;
for there were many who followed him.
Some scribes who were Pharisees saw that Jesus was eating with sinners
and tax collectors and said to his disciples,
“Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”
Jesus heard this and said to them,
“Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.
I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.”

God bless our troops!


Thursday, January 15, 2009

Okay, today I need to spend the day getting this place straightened up. I have been a good Flybaby insofar as I have decluttered the front bathroom linen closet, and that's no mean feat. But, the rest of the house is a mess - so today I go from room to room making things look better. No deep cleaning or decluttering, just getting the surfaces looking good and getting rid of the chaos. Then I can concentrate on the other stuff.

Tomorrow is Harold's last day at Medler. He is very excited. He never really wanted to work off the farm so I can imagine how happy he is to be able to once again be a full-time farmer.
Word of the day:

Thursday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 1:40-45

A leper came to him and kneeling down begged him and said,
“If you wish, you can make me clean.”
Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand,
touched the leper, and said to him,
“I do will it. Be made clean.”
The leprosy left him immediately, and he was made clean.
Then, warning him sternly, he dismissed him at once.
Then he said to him, “See that you tell no one anything,
but go, show yourself to the priest
and offer for your cleansing what Moses prescribed;
that will be proof for them.”
The man went away and began to publicize the whole matter.
He spread the report abroad
so that it was impossible for Jesus to enter a town openly.
He remained outside in deserted places,
and people kept coming to him from everywhere.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
Sometimes I think the best way to get the word out about something is to tell someone to keep it secret. This guy didn't just tell one or two people quietly, he broadcast it everywhere and abroad. What if we lived our faith like that. What if we just couldn't keep quiet about the Good News? What would the world be like?

God bless the troops!


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Today a dear friend would have been 58. John was the kind of guy who, when he saw a need, did his darndest to fill it. Never complained. Never said an unkind word about anyone. Always put others first. I guess God decided that for once John should go home early. Happy Birthday, Cute John. We all miss you!
The world is in a deep freeze today. At least as far as my eye can see. Wind chills are close to -20. I'm wondering where global warming went. I can remember a winter like this back in the 1980s. Weeks of frigid temps. This is extreme even for Michigan.
Well wa'd ya think of Biggest Loser last night? My thoughts about this are on my Biggest Loser Journey blog.
I started cleaning out my craft/quilting/knitting room last night. I am working my way through the NCIS series. The room is in very bad shape and needs decluttering badly. I want to finish up some quilts that I started last summer. I also owe my little Claire-Bear a "big girl bed" quilt. She wants a pink quilt. Clay says it has to have green in it too. Not sure why Clay thinks he get a vote, but there it is. Claire agrees to the green also. I think maybe it will have hearts on it. And then there is little Kelli or Sam jr. I'll plan that one when we know for sure. I have missed quilting and can't wait to get that room cleaned out.
The scent of the day yesterday was Honeysuckle. I'm getting ready to cut the bars of soap. Last week's Berry Pickin' is headed for the soap rack downstairs.

Stay warm today!

Wednesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 1:29-39

On leaving the synagogue
Jesus entered the house of Simon and Andrew with James and John.
Simon’s mother-in-law lay sick with a fever.
They immediately told him about her.
He approached, grasped her hand, and helped her up.
Then the fever left her and she waited on them.

When it was evening, after sunset,
they brought to him all who were ill or possessed by demons.
The whole town was gathered at the door.
He cured many who were sick with various diseases,
and he drove out many demons,
not permitting them to speak because they knew him.

Rising very early before dawn,
he left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed.
Simon and those who were with him pursued him
and on finding him said, “Everyone is looking for you.”
He told them, “Let us go on to the nearby villages
that I may preach there also.
For this purpose have I come.”
So he went into their synagogues, preaching and driving out demons
throughout the whole of Galilee.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
When I was younger and read this passage, I immediately zoomed in on the fact that Peter's mother-in-law, upon being cured, got up and waited on the men. Hmmmph! Isn't that always the way. I was younger then, and even though I wasn't part of the feminist movement, elements of their agenda did creep into my thinking. But I believe that sentence about her waiting on them was meant to jump out at the reader. It is a casual statement about a miraculous occurrance. It wasn't a commentary about women being subservient to men - it was about a healing so complete that Peter's mother-in-law was immediately able to resume her life. No convalescence - no nothing. And what did Jesus say about a servant's heart?

When I read this passage, I think of my late grandmother. I see her in Peter's mother-in-law. She lived to wait on other people. This was her life blood. This gave her pleasure. This was how she expressed her love. We get in trouble, I think, when we look at service to others as something less than noble, as something beneath us. Grandmala would have risen from that bed and scooted everyone to the table and served them ravioli, zuppa, and home-made bread.

If you want to learn something about a person, watch how they treat servers in a restaurant - or at the dry cleaner - or at Walmart the day after Thanksgiving.

God bless our troops!


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Well, winter is making its presence known with a vengeance. We haven't had a winter like this in a few years. I pray everyone is safe on the roads today.
Today will again be laundry day because all I had yesterday was rusty water. I think that little problem is now fixed. Harold is counting down the hours until the end of the week when he will be semi-retired and will once again be a full-time farmer - which is all he ever really wanted.
I need to get into some kind of routine. I don't function well without one. It's hard to formulate a new routine after 13 years. I have no frame of reference because 13 years ago, we had all four kids living at home and they more or less formed the framework for any kind of routine.
I worked on things for the Maple Syrup festival yesterday. It helps having a focus for which products we will be taking, but there is still a lot of work to do getting that area organized.

Word of the day:
Tuesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 1:21-28

Jesus came to Capernaum with his followers,
and on the sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught.
The people were astonished at his teaching,
for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes.
In their synagogue was a man with an unclean spirit;
he cried out, “What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth?
Have you come to destroy us?
I know who you are–the Holy One of God!”
Jesus rebuked him and said, “Quiet! Come out of him!”
The unclean spirit convulsed him and with a loud cry came out of him.
All were amazed and asked one another,
“What is this?
A new teaching with authority.
He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him.”
His fame spread everywhere throughout the whole region of Galilee.

God bless our troops!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Today is physical day. Not looking forward to that. Our family doctor retired last summer and I will be seeing a PA, which is fine, but I don't do well with change. I wish I had made the appointment for earlier in the day. Then I could have skipped breakfast and gotten my bloodwork done on the same day.
This week's zone is the bathroom and one extra room. I think the bathroom will occupy all of my time this week. I have so much junk in the linen closet. I need to get some steel sacks today. My kitchen declutter - all of the expired cans - well, the bag can't hold it all. I also need to do something about the wall paper behind the toilet. I let it go because we were supposed to remodel the bathroom this year, but that's not going to happen with the tenuous economy thing that's going on.
We had our meeting about the Maple Syrup Festival. We finalized the mixes and food we will be taking. We are scaling down on the "ready to eat" food for this show and concentrating more on the mixes and the primitives. There is too much competition with the ready to eat stuff and what we don't sell goes to waste since we have only the one show. I am going with the fruity scents for spring. My favs are the bakery scents, but people tend to buy those in the fall.
Another storm is predicted for tonight into tomorrow morning. Love the snow - hate the bad roads.
Today is also laundry day and bill day. I'd better get crackin'


Word of the day:
Monday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Mk 1:14-20

After John had been arrested,
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the Gospel of God:
“This is the time of fulfillment.
The Kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the Gospel.” As he passed by the Sea of Galilee,
he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea;
they were fishermen.
Jesus said to them,
“Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.”
Then they left their nets and followed him.
He walked along a little farther
and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John.
They too were in a boat mending their nets.
Then he called them.
So they left their father Zebedee in the boat
along with the hired men and followed him.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
I"m trying to picture this scene in my mind. James and John - the sons of thunder - up and leave their father and the hired man and take off to follow Jesus. Now I know that Mark the evangelist is known for getting right to the point without wasting words, but it is hard to wrap my mind around the kind of magnetism that Jesus must have had . . . and still has.

God bless our troops!


Sunday, January 11, 2009

I made Berry Pickin' candles yesterday. I've never made that scent in candles and now I am wondering why. It smells wonderful.
The girls have decided that today's dinner will be a soup day. My job was to come up with a bread. I made one from a recipe I found. It is Maple Oat Bread. You can guess why that one caught my eye. I had a tiny piece from the loaf. Mmmmmmm. For those who count Weight Watcher points, it's 3.5 points per slice and well worth it! I made mine with half whole wheat flour. I've missed baking bread. That's something I will be going back to. I have a bread maker, but it isn't the same thing as actually getting your hands in the dough.

Word of the day:
Feast of the Baptism of the Lord
Mk 1:7-11

This is what John the Baptist proclaimed:
“One mightier than I is coming after me.
I am not worthy to stoop and loosen the thongs of his sandals.
I have baptized you with water;
he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”

It happened in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee
and was baptized in the Jordan by John.
On coming up out of the water he saw the heavens being torn open
and the Spirit, like a dove, descending upon him.
And a voice came from the heavens,
“You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”

Thoughts from the cornfield:
At church last night there was a discussion with the pastor as to whether this was still considered Christmas. Each of us were firmly convinced that our position was the correct one. However, after looking at a few sources, it would appear that we (as Kevin said last night) are both right.

My planning calendar puts this feast within the confines of Christmas, but Kevin's Sacramentary calls this the first week of Ordinary time. 'Tis a connundrum. I looked at one of my music sources and not one Christmas song is listed. So I looked at another source and it lists "Joy to the World" as a song choice. So Kevin has decided that this is a transition week. Works for me but I think this needs to be clarified by the liturgical powers that be.

And what does any of this have to do with today's Gospel. Nothing. :)

God bless our troops!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

I'm feeling a little melancholy today. I'm not sure about what, or where it's coming from. It could be the post Christmas letdown or it could be the major change in my life with leaving the school. I feel discombobulated. I hear people congratulate me on my retirement, and yet I'm not actually retired. That's just the technical term for "quitting in order to be able to buy health care." I look at Facebook to keep up with what's going on with people who are no longer part of my daily life. It's kind of like when you take a scoop of water out of a pool. There are ripples for a few minutes, but then water settles and it's as if that scoop of water was never part of the pool. I feel like that scoop of water. The adjacent water has filled in and it's as if I was never there. I know this will pass, but I didn't expect it to bother me so much.
I got on Facebook last night to discover that Uncle Tom was taken to the hospital. I haven't hear anything more on his condition. He and Aunt Molly are my godparents.

Word of the day
Christmas weekday

Jn 3:22-30

Jesus and his disciples went into the region of Judea,
where he spent some time with them baptizing.
John was also baptizing in Aenon near Salim,
because there was an abundance of water there,
and people came to be baptized,
for John had not yet been imprisoned.
Now a dispute arose between the disciples of John and a Jew
about ceremonial washings.
So they came to John and said to him,
“Rabbi, the one who was with you across the Jordan,
to whom you testified,
here he is baptizing and everyone is coming to him.”
John answered and said,
“No one can receive anything except what has been given from heaven.
You yourselves can testify that I said that I am not the Christ,
but that I was sent before him.
The one who has the bride is the bridegroom;
the best man, who stands and listens for him,
rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice.
So this joy of mine has been made complete.
He must increase; I must decrease.”

God bless our troops!


Friday, January 9, 2009

I think the kids at church were a little confused today because we sang Christmas songs. In the Catholic church, Christmas concludes with the Feast of the Baptism of Jesus which is next Sunday. Then begins the huge job of taking everything down. Fr. Kevin and I dismantled the huge manger, and then, with the help of 2 other people, we hauled it down to the church basement. I don't think the average church goer is aware of just how much time and muscle go into making the church look beautiful. Linda, our official decorator does a beautiful job, but it would be nice if more parishioners took an interest in helping. It's just a huge, huge job.

After Mass, I ran some errands and picked up some more carts for storage. I found some wonderful packaging for some of our products for next year. It's hard to believe that it is already time to begin planning for the Shepherd Maple Syrup festival. The girls and I need to have a meeting to decide which fragrances we'll be taking. It's hard to limit them because I love them all.

I ran into Melisa and the kids while I was up town and ate lunch in the car with them while Melisa went into the store to get some things. Clayton informed me that he does not like his new car seat. It is not comfortable. But, it has cup holders which he thinks are very cool for when he wants to "take a break" holding his drink. Claire doesn't have the cool cupholders, but she really doesn't care anyway.
5:30 pm update
I spent the afternoon down in my dungeon trying to get my workroom into some kind of order.
I am beginning to see some progress. Right now I am just trying to get all of the like things together so we aren't buying things we already have. I started doing the taxes for the business. That's not the fun part. LOL! It amazes me how much money we have spent. Last year I was pumping money in. This year the business - while not making a huge profit - is paying for itself.

Christmas Weekday
Lk 5:12-16
It happened that there was a man full of leprosy in one of the towns where Jesus was;
and when he saw Jesus,
he fell prostrate, pleaded with him, and said,
“Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean.”
Jesus stretched out his hand, touched him, and said,
“I do will it. Be made clean.”
And the leprosy left him immediately.
Then he ordered him not to tell anyone, but
“Go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing
what Moses prescribed; that will be proof for them.”
The report about him spread all the more,
and great crowds assembled to listen to him
and to be cured of their ailments,
but he would withdraw to deserted places to pray.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
Even if the leper didn't say a word, it would be evident that his skin had cleared up.
I think the best way to spread the word on anything is to tell someone not to tell. What better judge of human nature was there than Jesus?

God bless our troops!


Thursday, January 8, 2009

Good morning,
I'd like to start today with a little piece of advice. Check your credit card statements regularly.
I checked mine last night and found a charge from 02OLNADMK 866-228-1231 for $129.90. I immediately emailed my bank and heard back from them this morning. They have removed the charge. She told me that they had searched online and found nothing. So I decided to search. Very interesting. There were many complaints about fraudulent charges from this same entity. So be warned people.
Yesterday's visit with my cuties was great. We made pancakes and they were good! Before we ate, we said grace. Clay surprised me by jumping in after the first couple of words and finishing it. When there are a lot of people around, he won't do it so I was surprised that he knew all of the words. Good job, Clay!!
Well, the sink is unclogged thanks to Harold. It's interesting how life comes to a halt when you can't do your dishes. LOL!

I am still in the kitchen zone although I haven't done much. My job for today is to clean out the silverware drawer and the pantry.
I'm off to the other blog

Word of the day
Christmas Weekday
Lk 4:14-22

Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit,
and news of him spread throughout the whole region.
He taught in their synagogues and was praised by all.

He came to Nazareth, where he had grown up,
and went according to his custom
into the synagogue on the sabbath day.
He stood up to read and was handed a scroll of the prophet Isaiah.
He unrolled the scroll and found the passage where it was written:
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,
because he has anointed me
to bring glad tidings to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives
and recovery of sight to the blind,
to let the oppressed go free,
and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.

Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down,
and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him.
He said to them,
“Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”
And all spoke highly of him
and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
And there were some who wanted to throw him off a cliff. It must have been an amazing experience to hear the Word from the Word himself. Would we have recognized him?

God bless our troops!


Wednesday, January 7, 2008

Well, today is the day after the day after Monday - the day I promised Clay that he and Claire can come visit me for the day. We were going to bake cookies, but since the kitchen sink drain is plugged (which always means that the back bathroom drain is also plugged) and since I can't do dishes, we will be switching to plan B which is - ummmmmmm, I don't know yet. I do have some refrigerator ones in the fridge. Maybe those will suffice.
I didn't get any candles made yesterday. I went down there, but spent a lot of time trying to get things semi-organized. Before I make anything else, I need to organize what I have so I know what's there.
I'm using a bar of the soap I made the other day. It smells heavenly. I think I'm just going to keep it rather than list it on Ebay.
I'm headed for the other blog.

Word of the day:
Christmas Weekday
Mk 6:45-52

After the five thousand had eaten and were satisfied,
Jesus made his disciples get into the boat
and precede him to the other side toward Bethsaida,
while he dismissed the crowd.
And when he had taken leave of them,
he went off to the mountain to pray.
When it was evening,
the boat was far out on the sea and he was alone on shore.
Then he saw that they were tossed about while rowing,
for the wind was against them.
About the fourth watch of the night,
he came toward them walking on the sea.
He meant to pass by them.
But when they saw him walking on the sea,
they thought it was a ghost and cried out.
They had all seen him and were terrified.
But at once he spoke with them,
“Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid!”
He got into the boat with them and the wind died down.
They were completely astounded.
They had not understood the incident of the loaves.
On the contrary, their hearts were hardened.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
I don't ever remember reading this particular version of the storm at sea. I am tempted to wonder how the disciples hearts could be hardened until I remember that I often do the same thng. Instead of asking God for help in troubled times, I often tend to hold him responsible. The older I get, the more I am learning to turn it over to him.

God bless our troops!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Today is the traditional day for gift giving in many parts of Europe. When I was growing up, La Befana - the Italian Christmas witch - visited good little girls and boys, leaving gifts in their shoes. Our tree is still up, as has always been my custom. In the Catholic church, Christmas ends
with the feast of the Baptism of the Lord which falls on January 11th this year. Sooooooo, if you haven't sent out your Christmas cards, there is still time. Mine are going out this morning. :)
Yesterday I got 3 drawers decluttered. I also made soap, but the color isn't great. I made Berry Pickin' and that recipe has a ground tea leaves. I goofed up by adding the tea leaves too early and the soap is a tannish color. It smells great, but it isn't the prettiest stuff going. Sooooo, I will probably sell it at cost on Ebay.
Today is jar candle making day - not sure when that's going to happen. I have a staff meeting followed by moving the humongous manger out of the church. This thing is huge!!! After that, I'm not sure. If it's still early, I'll come home and do the candles. Tomorrow my buddies Clay and Claire are coming over. The plan is to make chocolate chip cookies.
Things have slowed way down on the website which is to be expected. It gives us a breather and time to replenish items. Most of our mixes sold out so Anna has some work to do. :)
I'm off to the other blog and getting ready to work out.
Have a great day!

Word of the day:
Christmas Weekday

Mk 6:34-44

When Jesus saw the vast crowd, his heart was moved with pity for them,
for they were like sheep without a shepherd;
and he began to teach them many things.
By now it was already late and his disciples approached him and said,
“This is a deserted place and it is already very late.
Dismiss them so that they can go
to the surrounding farms and villages
and buy themselves something to eat.”
He said to them in reply,
“Give them some food yourselves.”
But they said to him,
“Are we to buy two hundred days’ wages worth of food
and give it to them to eat?”
He asked them, “How many loaves do you have? Go and see.”
And when they had found out they said,
“Five loaves and two fish.”
So he gave orders to have them sit down in groups on the green grass.
The people took their places in rows by hundreds and by fifties.
Then, taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven,
he said the blessing, broke the loaves, and gave them to his disciples
to set before the people;
he also divided the two fish among them all.
They all ate and were satisfied.
And they picked up twelve wicker baskets full of fragments
and what was left of the fish.
Those who ate of the loaves were five thousand men.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
The Church used to celebrate the Epiphany on this day. Now this feast is celebrated on the closest Sunday - so last Sunday was when we heard the reading about the Magi bringing gifts to the baby Jesus. Today we hear about the gift of food from the greatest gift of all - who was food for us all.

God bless the troops!


Monday, January 5, 2009

This morning it hit me that I do not belong to the school anymore. It's a funny feeling. I thought it would feel like an extended vacation, but it really is different. I am not a part of that scene anymore. It represents a major change in my life and change is always scary for me. But our lives have times and seasons and I am beginning a new season.
Yesterday I joined the Biggest Loser Blog edition. I created a separate blog for that and have moved my daily stats over there. Those who are following my fitness goals can find my Biggest Loser blog here:
Mary's Biggest Loser Blog
This week the Fly Zone is the kitchen. I have some major decluttering to do in the cabinets and drawers. I need to remember that I will focus on only one drawer or cabinet at a time. It may not get completely decluttered this week, but progress will be made.

Today is laundry day, bill day, and soapmaking day so I have a full slate ahead of me. I'm not sure what kind of soap I will be making today. I need to do a good inventory downstairs. I am also going to spend 15 minutes each day making some progress down there.

Well, I am off to work out. See you on the other blog. :)
Word of the day
Memorial of Saint John Neumann, bishop
Mt 4:12-17, 23-25

When Jesus heard that John had been arrested,
he withdrew to Galilee.
He left Nazareth and went to live in Capernaum by the sea,
in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali,
that what had been said through Isaiah the prophet
might be fulfilled:

Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali,
the way to the sea, beyond the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles,
the people who sit in darkness
have seen a great light,
on those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death
light has arisen.

From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say,
“Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

He went around all of Galilee,
teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom,
and curing every disease and illness among the people.
His fame spread to all of Syria,
and they brought to him all who were sick with various diseases
and racked with pain,
those who were possessed, lunatics, and paralytics,
and he cured them.
And great crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, and Judea,
and from beyond the Jordan followed him.

God bless our troops!


Sunday, January 4, 2009

Today was another "white knuckler" as far as driving. The road was a solid sheet of ice going into church. It just looked like it was wet, but I tested it early on and immediately went into a skid. Thankfully, there wasn't much traffic so I could go as slowly as I wanted. This is certainly my year to look my driving fears in the face. I think winter would be my favorite season if it wasn't for some of the road conditions that occur. We sure have had our fill this year.
It's been kind of a lazy day. I've been baby-stepping in the kitchen. 15 minutes here, 15 minutes there - just the surfaces. The drawers and cabinets I will tackle when I am in the Kitchen zone. I like days like this where I can just putter and enjoy the day. I don't work per se on Sundays, I just putter.
I am finally finishing a quilt that I started over 2 years ago for a friend's baby. Quilting is one of the things I am really looking forward to doing now that I hope to have more time. I started a couple of Christmas quilts last summer and I would like to get those finished. I also have a "Big Girl Bed" quilt that I owe Claire. So those will be done before I start anything new. Of course, the quilting/crafting/knitting room needs to be decluttered before I do anything else.
I didn't meet my weight loss goal this week. I got derailed by dinner last night and there was a lot of sodium in the dish I had. When I logged on this morning I noticed that on one of the other blogs that I follow, there is a Biggest Loser challenge. I am all over that!!!!

Epiphany of the Lord
Mt 2:1-12

When Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea,
in the days of King Herod,
behold, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem, saying,
“Where is the newborn king of the Jews?
We saw his star at its rising
and have come to do him homage.”
When King Herod heard this,
he was greatly troubled,
and all Jerusalem with him.
Assembling all the chief priests and the scribes of the people,
He inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.
They said to him, “In Bethlehem of Judea,
for thus it has been written through the prophet:
And you, Bethlehem, land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
since from you shall come a ruler,
who is to shepherd my people Israel.
Then Herod called the magi secretly
and ascertained from them the time of the star’s appearance.
He sent them to Bethlehem and said,
“Go and search diligently for the child.
When you have found him, bring me word,
that I too may go and do him homage.”
After their audience with the king they set out.
And behold, the star that they had seen at its rising preceded them,
until it came and stopped over the place where the child was.
They were overjoyed at seeing the star,
and on entering the house
they saw the child with Mary his mother.
They prostrated themselves and did him homage.
Then they opened their treasures
and offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.
And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod,
they departed for their country by another way.

God bless our troops!


Saturday, January 3, 2009

I got a late start today. That seems to be the pattern lately. Maybe I am catching up on sleep. Anyway, I am headed for the treadmill.
Daily stats:
Type: Treadmill

Route: Manual controls
Time: 30 minutes
Average heart rate: 117
Max heart rate: 140
Calories burned: 218
Up .2 from last Saturday

The workout went well, but I am reminded about how out of shape I have become. What used to be a breeze is now a struggle. Harold plans to start working out when he retires. He has 2 more weeks. Then we will be fighting for treadmill time. LOL! Not really.

I stayed the course pretty well yesterday. Tonight we have the Sodbusters dinner that was canceled a couple of weeks ago. Today is a carb down day so it will be either steak or a salad.
The decluttering is going slowly, but it's going. Consistency is the key. I've made some inroads in the basement. Harold and Anna helped me get the soggy rug out from under my work table. I have to figure something else out because my back and legs just can't take being on the cement floor for any length of time. The website and blog traffic are both way down. That's pretty normal for this time of year. It's almost time for us to start planning for the Shepherd Maple Syrup festival. Well, I'm off to tackle the laundry
Word of the day:
Christmas Weekday

Jn 1:29-34

John the Baptist saw Jesus coming toward him and said,
“Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.
He is the one of whom I said,
‘A man is coming after me who ranks ahead of me
because he existed before me.’
I did not know him,
but the reason why I came baptizing with water
was that he might be made known to Israel.”
John testified further, saying,
“I saw the Spirit come down like a dove from the sky
and remain upon him.
I did not know him,
but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me,
‘On whomever you see the Spirit come down and remain,
he is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’
Now I have seen and testified that he is the Son of God.”

God bless our troops!


Friday, Januay 2, 2009

A new year has begun. At this time, it's human nature to look at the clean slate of a year ahead of us and try to figure out how to make our lives better. We make resolutions - and usually break them. This year I am not going to make New Year's resolutions. I am going to make New Day resolutions. Each day I am going to resolve to do certain things. For me, it really is all about baby steps. I am too overwhelmed when I look at the big picture. I know it's there, but my focus has to be on the small steps - the pieces of the puzzle that I am going to put into the big picture.

In Overeaters Anonymous, the focus is always "One Day at a Time." That is my resolution - not for the New Year, but for my life. In God, through Jesus Christ, we are new creations each and every day.

I am off to do my workout - Just for Today.
Daily stats:
Type: Treadmill

Route: Manual controls
Time: 30 minutes
Average heart rate: 120
Max heart rate: 133
0 from last Friday


Word of the day
Memorial of Saint Basil the Great and Saint Gregory Nazianzen, Bishops and Doctors of the Church
Jn 1:19-28

This is the testimony of John.
When the Jews from Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to him
to ask him, “Who are you?”
He admitted and did not deny it, but admitted,
“I am not the Christ.”
So they asked him,
“What are you then? Are you Elijah?”
And he said, “I am not.”
“Are you the Prophet?”
He answered, “No.”
So they said to him,
“Who are you, so we can give an answer to those who sent us?
What do you have to say for yourself?”
He said:
“I am the voice of one crying out in the desert,
‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’
as Isaiah the prophet said.”
Some Pharisees were also sent.
They asked him,
“Why then do you baptize
if you are not the Christ or Elijah or the Prophet?”
John answered them,
“I baptize with water;
but there is one among you whom you do not recognize,
the one who is coming after me,
whose sandal strap I am not worthy to untie.”
This happened in Bethany across the Jordan,
where John was baptizing.

Thoughts from the cornfield:
John did not suffer from an identity crisis. He spent his life doing what God intended for him - making straight the path for the Messiah. If others were confused about his role, John wasn't. He focused on his own mission and not on his own glory or reputation. He didn't seek honors or to be someone he wasn't He spent his life being John and doing it to the utmost. How often do we let others define who we are? How often do we decide that we know better than God what we should be doing? What if we all had the humility of John the Baptist? What if we all spent our lives being the best "me" we could be? What would the world be like? Sounds like heaven to me.

God bless our troops!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year everyone! I hope 2009 brings you closer to your hopes and dreams.
For me, I would like to hit goal in 2009, but if I don't, I don't.

Today I am officially retired from the school system. It still hasn't quite sunk in yet. It will be like having one long snow day all winter long. :)

I'm just marking my spot for now - I'll be back later to update.
Word of the day:
Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God
Lk 2:16-21

The shepherds went in haste to Bethlehem and found Mary and Joseph,
and the infant lying in the manger.
When they saw this,
they made known the message
that had been told them about this child.
All who heard it were amazed
by what had been told them by the shepherds.
And Mary kept all these things,
reflecting on them in her heart.
Then the shepherds returned,
glorifying and praising God
for all they had heard and seen,
just as it had been told to them. When eight days were completed for his circumcision,
he was named Jesus, the name given him by the angel
before he was conceived in the womb.

God bless our troops!