Monday, September 29, 2008
I particularly like his line that sex is not love but rather an expression of love. A great article on a touchy topic.
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
Wednesday, September 24, 2008
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Monday, September 15, 2008
Caleb, Four years later, and it seems like yesterday that we were ascending the stairs of the bell tower at The National Shrine. It was a day that would change our lives forever. I remember leaving school that day after a long day of teaching and being so happy that no cars had blocked me in at the school parking lot so that I was on-time to meet you at the Shrine for our four o'clock (or so) appointment to check out the bell tower. Little did I know you had so much more planned than just a "look" at the Tower. How well you planned that afternoon, which you specifically marked on the calendar, so as to have our engagement day be on the special feast of Our Lady of Sorrows and Grandpa Young's anniversary into eternal life. I was amazed at the other planning you had done in asking John to play photographer on the roof of Gibbons Hall from which he captured the first moments of our engagement. I remember looking out over the city of DC and CUA, and then turning back around to find you on one knee, holding my hand and speaking so gently. Your words were beautiful and unforgettable. I love you and thank you for sharing your life with me, and now with our two girls. I cannot, for a moment, imagine life without you, journeying at my side. You are my dearest and best friend, and I look forward to every day with you, walking hand-in-hand on our way home to heaven, together.Here's for you
(Photo credit: Thanks, John, for helping us with these photographic memories.)
Sunday, September 14, 2008
Today (September 14, Australian time) is Nick's 4th birthday-FOURTH! Four years have passed, little man, and I can tell you the exact spot where I was when your Mom called me to say that you just entered the world. I can specifically remember sitting down to my computer the minutes after Mommy told me that she and Daddy were having you, and writing a whole letter to you, and then going to my classes and being on top of the world. I wanted to shout the news I had just learned. Fast forward 4 years and you have grown, grown not only in physical strength and attributes, but also in my, our hearts. We love you dearly, and you have felt like my very own baby since the moment I knew you were in existence. May you always leave a wholesome mark wherever God may have you trod, and may you always know just how much you are loved, today, tomorrow, and always. Happy birthday, beautiful boy!
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
...things move fast. Yesterday I was reading Elizabeth Foss's blog in which she wrote this about a certain couple:
"I am reading ... . the blog of Stephanie Nielsen, a young mom in Arizona. The blog is just beautiful--full of life and love and utter joy in family. Stephanie has four young children and her love for them glows through every post. She clearly adores her husband and isn't shy about telling the world so. Last month, she and her husband were critically injured in a private plane accident. While they fight for their lives in Arizona, Stephanie's sister Courtney--who just had her first baby--has taken the children into her own home in Utah, where she, her husband, and the rest of Stephanie's siblings are loving them and heroically holding onto Stephanie's vision of family life. Courtney is blogging her experiences. I have found such inspiration between the two of them, and more than enough fodder for prayer."
After reading that (above), I was led to this. Tonight I went back there and was led to this. I was attracted to this couple for a simple reason: they are so in love with one another. Together they have created a little family of 4 kids. Together, Christian and Stephanie are fighting for their lives. Please pray for them. You can read more about their tragic experience here.
If you want to see more about this dynamic woman and her family, go to www.todayshow.com and look through videos (September 9) for the one titled "Injured Blogger Inspires Support."
Stephanie absolutely loves being a mom and making life beautiful and of the moment. I love seeing other moms cherish the sweet gifts they have been given and enjoy the precious moments that they, that we all get as moms. So often there are complaints about the kids or how hard a day was. Every job has its ups and downs, but there is no job in which you are constantly repaid in LOVE. Thank you, God, for this sweet job. I'm glad I don't ever have to retire.
Every time I read something about one person and then see the outpour of love and support from thousands (in this case, thousands--or more-- across the world, it makes me realize all the more just what one life does. Just doing one's daily duties and loving every moment of them, not because they are flashy, but because God's will is bigger than our own and He has a plan and purpose for the littlest, most mundane things (in the world's eyes) in every day life. In relation to just that, here is a good read.
Monday, September 8, 2008
Dear Mimi and Pa-Pa & Meema and Beeba,
Happy Grandparents' Day! We love you so much and are happy to have such loving grandparents in our young lives. We hope that you always know how much joy you give us and how much we appreciate your love, attention, and activity in our little lives. Although we are small, we feel every bit of your love. Thanks for giving it.
Lots of hugs from your girlies,
Maddy and Pita
Sunday, September 7, 2008
A couple of nights ago, there was a little lady in the laundry room/pantry-- a very small spot to say the least. Caleb was asking Maddy if there was something that she needed and if he could help her. The space is so small you may wonder why someone is squeezing in there. So, Caleb asked Maddy: "Can I help you?" She confidently and politely responded, "No sane-chew. I got it." Wow! She was taking care of "it" all right. Madge didn't need help because this is what she was (or thought she was) getting.
Thursday, September 4, 2008
It's a less than nine weeks until Election Day. Thanks to this blog for this novena.
O God, we acknowledge you today as Lord,
Not only of individuals, but of nations and governments.
We thank you for the privilege
Of being able to organize ourselves politically
And of knowing that political loyalty
Does not have to mean disloyalty to you.
We thank you for your law,
Which our Founding Fathers acknowledged
And recognized as higher than any human law.
We thank you for the opportunity that this election year puts before us,
To exercise our solemn duty not only to vote,
But to influence countless others to vote,
And to vote correctly.
Lord, we pray that your people may be awakened.
Let them realize that while politics is not their salvation,
Their response to you requires that they be politically active.
Awaken your people to know that they are not called to be a sect fleeing the world
But rather a community of faith renewing the world.
Awaken them that the same hands lifted up to you in prayer
Are the hands that pull the lever in the voting booth;
That the same eyes that read your Word
Are the eyes that read the names on the ballot,
And that they do not cease to be Christians
When they enter the voting booth.
Awaken your people to a commitment to justice
To the sanctity of marriage and the family,
To the dignity of each individual human life,
And to the truth that human rights begin when human lives begin,
And not one moment later.
Lord, we rejoice today
That we are citizens of your kingdom.
May that make us all the more committed
To being faithful citizens on earth.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Pita, you are 2 months old (July 1-Sept.1), and you are our sweet little gem. You have brought us so much joy and made me stop and think, "What was our life like before you?" Thank you for your smiles and squeaks. They are art pieces and music in our home. As one nurse told me during your blood work one day, "She is going to do great things." We agree, and you know what? You already have.
Just one month ago you were born, born into eternal life with the sacrament of Baptism. What a beautiful celebration it was in the evening of August 1st. On this evening, Friday evening, we attended 6:30pm Mass at St. Sebastian parish in Michigan, and your Aunty Mimi and Beeba played guitar and sang. Aunty Mimi played and sang solo, "I Could Sing of Your Love Forever," as I requested shortly before Mass. She did a super job. Deacon Charles baptized you, and he did such a wonderful job during his homily in explaining the sacrament and the responsibility we have as parents and the duty and call of this sacrament to your spiritual parents, Uncle Dan and Aunty Miriam. The whole evening was beautiful and simple, just like you, sweet girl. Although so many of your family members could not attend and come in from all over the globe, they were praying for you and we know will continue to as you go forth in this world with a shining light. Speaking of "shining lights," when Deacon Charles gave your baptismal candle to us and stated that the candle is a symbol of your faith, Madge saw the light and thought she had a particular duty: the duty to blow it out! That she did! What a silly sister you have, methodical no doubt, though. She loves you so much. On your baptismal day, you wore the dress that Maddy wore on her baptismal day, August 5, 2006. The gown was made especially for our family when Daddy, Mommy, and Maddy (then, in Mommy's tummy) were living in Beijing, China. Mommy and Daddy chose the material and lace, and a Chinese seamstress fashioned it simply in a few days' time. It came out just as we desired: beautiful and simple. May those two characteristics always be descriptions of your faith in Jesus, who loves you dearly and says, "Now you are mine twice: First I made you; then I bought you back!"(Chosen and Cherished, p.11). Following your baptism, we returned to Meema and Beeba's house where we celebrated with ice cream sundaes and banana splits. A dear friend, Mickey, sang a very special song for you too.
Isaiah 43: 1-4, 6-7
But now, this is what the LORD says—
he who created you, O Jacob,
he who formed you, O Israel:
"Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
3 For I am the LORD, your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
Cush [a] and Seba in your stead.
4 Since you are precious and honored in my sight,
and because I love you,
I will give men in exchange for you,
and people in exchange for your life.
5-7"So don't be afraid: I'm with you.
I'll round up all your scattered children,
pull them in from east and west.
I'll send orders north and south:
'Send them back.
Return my sons from distant lands,
my daughters from faraway places.
I want them back, every last one who bears my name,
every man, woman, and child
Whom I created for my glory,
yes, personally formed and made each one."
"Today" (Australian time: September 4th) is my sister Kate's 30th birthday. I can't hardly believe the big 30 is here. We really can start playing the "Golden Years." Kate, we love you. Thanks, (Mom and Dad) for your life and all the giving that you have done throughout yours. Our prayer is that you will be blessed with God's love and guidance as you journey onwards, with the knowledge that you are loved by Him, and so many family members and friends. God bless this birthday and all of your new year!