May we reach one day the happiness of the new and everlasting Jerusalem by faithfully following him who lives and reigns for ever and ever. Blessing of Palms
Palm Sunday at the Saturday Vigil at our local station church.... we went outside to hear the reading and get our palms blessed and process in, and Paddy was cold even though the sun was shining. At 9 am this morning our new refrigerator and king size mattress were delivered and the old ones taken away. The excitement of that continued as we waited for the ice-maker to start spitting ice cubes and tested the softness of the new mattress. My daughter Clare called from college and we talked for two hours! She is exhausted and looking forward to her Easter break. In the afternoon, all of us -- me, husband Kevin and all six boys/young men went for a walk in the neighborhood. Then I rode with Kevin as he drove our old Nissan Quest around the neighborhood trying to warm it up -- it's been covered with snow for a couple of months. In the evening I made pizzas -- mini-ones that fit in our toaster oven since our regular one has been out of action since last month when there was a "power event" that burned out several of our appliances. I've been reading Joseph of Nazareth by Federico Suarez.
I made waffles for breakfast. I'm trying to clean the house for Easter, so I mopped the kitchen and deep cleaned the downstairs bathroom. I got rid of a bagful of old magazines and half-used notebooks that were cluttering up my closet so I am up to 61 bags now. I have some old pillows that I am going to use to stuff our old falling-apart sofa so I am going to count that as 62 bags because they are going where they will never be seen again. This is spring break for the kids (college, high school and charter) so I have more time, though I'm having them continue a couple of subjects during the break. In the afternoon I made more mini-pizzas, steam-cleaned the corners in the kitchen and foyer, and helped Kieron and Paddy with math. Tonight is tacos -- bad food day ;-) -- kids don't think so though. I have been reading A Wonder Book for Girls and Boys to Paddy in the past few days and we are almost finished now. Kieron is reading The God King and Victory on the Walls after finishing Ides of April and Beyond the Desert Gates. Sean is reading Jeeves and Wooster books. Before that he read the James Herriot books. Nice day outside; Kevin and Sean went down to the high school so Sean could do a football workout. They're back now and I scrubbed around the stairs. The more I clean, the more dirt I notice.... symbolic, no doubt.
Anoint Jesus' feet by a life pleasing to God. Follow in His footsteps; if you have an abundance, give it to the poor. In this way you can wipe the feet of the Lord. -- Augustine.
(I can't imagine being able to get the house sparkly in 3 days. I must be doing something wrong the rest of the year.)
According to an ancient tradition the three days after Palm Sunday are devoted in many places to a thorough cleaning of the house, the most vigorous of the whole year. ,,,No time is wasted on the usual kitchen work, the meals are very casual and light. On Wednesday night everything has to be back in place, glossy and shining.
...It seems that the custom was taken over from the ancient Jewish practice, for the Jews in the Old Testament cleansed and swept and decorated the whole house in preparation for the feast of the Pasch (Passover).Spring Cleaning.
Aidan had a physical therapy appointment in town at 10 am so we left about 9 am. He has a new PT and has been slowly developing a relationship with him -- the guy likes to joke and so Aidan jokes in return by running away and looking back. Steve fitted out a change in his brace so we were there for well over an hour. Meanwhile Kevin did WinCo shopping. We came home to sleety rain which is still continuing. Our mountains have decided it's not spring yet. I mopped the hall, mopped the wooden stairs, scrubbed the toilet and spot-mopped the upstairs floor. Paddy's math was adding 3 and 4 numbers together which he did easily in his head. Oh yes, and I am laundering lots of bedding and the chair covers so I'm keeping that going. We're having a roast in the crockpot -- with salsa and diced tomatoes and onions and garlic. Haven't decided what to serve with it yet.
Peanut butter muffins for breakfast -- taste good, and plenty of protein. The house is definitely more sparkly than yesterday. I worked so hard! I steam-scoured the tile kitchen counters and the bathroom tiled floor and shower walls; I did lots of laundry; I moved the dinner table so I could thoroughly vacuum the rug. When I did that the boys all started playing football on it -- it looks so much like a field, being dark green with Persian flowers on it. I vacuumed Clare's room since she is coming home today, and vacuumed thoroughly upstairs. I tidied up my work area in the loft. I wiped the window sills. I'm up to 65 bags -- I burned a lot and tossed some and put some in the giveaway pile. Today I got the kids involved in the work too -- mostly sending the younger boys on errands to put various things away or fetch things for me or lift things, but Kieron and Sean cleaned out their room, too. We had snow coming down steadily last night and all the earlier part of the day but now, in the mid-afternoon, the sky is blue and everything is melting. I like almost-April-snow-storms because they never stay long. We still have the ugly dirty old glaciers underneath so maybe it's nice to have a layer of soft pure white on top.
Wednesday is known as Spy Wednesday because on this day Judas made a bargain with the high priest to betray Jesus for 30 silver pieces (Matt 26:14-16; Mark 14:10-11; Luke 22:1-6)......This is also the day that Jesus was anointed with an expensive jar of alabaster by the woman at Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper (Matt 26:6-13; Mark 14:3-9; John 12:1-19). Catholic Culture
The word maundy comes from the Latin word mandatum (commandment) which is the first word of the Gospel acclamation: Mandátum novum do vobis dicit Dóminus, ut diligátis ínvicem, sicut diléxi vos: "I give you a new commandment: Love one another as I have loved you." (John 13:34)Several Thursday Activities. Also, I didn't know that the word triduum was used for more than just the days leading up to Easter. What a treasure-house the faith is!
Last night we picked up Clare and her friend Elizabeth at the Amtrak station. We got them some burgers at In'n'Out and we got home about 10 pm. They had barely made the bus because of a miscommunication between the courier who was bringing them to the station and themselves. They got there just as the bus was leaving but were able to flag it down, amusing the bus driver, they reported.
Spice muffins for breakfast. SO COLD, only 20 degrees outside our home! Clare had an orthodontist appointment in town so we zipped down there -- we were there for 2 hours but then we went to a couple of thrift stores and got some food at Arby's -- by that time we were all totally exhausted. Down there it was very warm relatively speaking -- low 60's. The girls fell asleep on the way home and I came that close. I had to eat Aidan's crunchy granola bar to keep from dozing as I drove. I slept for 2 hours and so we had a rather late dinner. Aidan was SUCH a help -- he chopped broccoli, put won tons in the toaster oven, and stirred the stir fry. Later he helped me clean up. We had beef stir fry, broccoli, won tons, spring rolls, and a noodle/cabbage/carrot chow mein type thing. We had ice cream bars for dessert -- I'm glad my instincts that Holy Thursday is a bit of a joyful day were on target. I didn't have any ice cream but I did have some of Kevin's pina colada. I made yogurt protein drinks for the older boys who are going to need to fast tomorrow -- they are so very skinny that I wanted to make sure they were loaded up. The girls watched Anne of Green Gables and are now downstairs listening to music on their laptops -- I can hear Paddy talking away. He says he loves Elizabeth.
"It is accomplished; and bowing his head he gave up his spirit."This is one of the first years we've had more household members fasting than eating normally, since a majority of us are over 18. A very quiet day. I took Clare to the doctor for her cough and then we stopped by the drug store to get her some paper and pencils for school. Then various household members read or took showers or napped. Sean, Kieron, Aidan, and Paddy -- the younger set -- went outside for a couple of hours to play in the snow. I cut Kieron's hair and Liam's hair. Then a census worker came by the door! Then we had to rush to get to the Way of the Cross devotion at our local station chapel. Back home, Clare helped me make scrambled eggs, steak-fried potatoes, and broccoli with mushrooms and garlic, which was served with refried beans, grated cheddar, tortillas and chopped onions. Simple but tasted very good after the fasting.
A quiet day at home today. The girls are watching old Anne of Avonlea movies. Paddy has been playing a lot with a military board game -- he has it set out on the floor right now. Aidan is looking forward anxiously to Easter tomorrow. Kieron made chocolate chip pancakes. I did some studying and reading, not as much as I hoped to, and took a very long nap. At 3 pm I dressed the little boys and myself in nice clothes and we all went to our station chapel's Mass at 4pm, which is a little bit liturgically incorrect since the Vigil is supposed to start around the present time (10 pm). The teenage boys were altar servers which is why we went to this one instead of the one down the mountain at 9 am tomorrow. Then I made chicken simmered in the cast-iron pan in BBQ sauce and garlic, and enchiladas in the toaster oven (our oven isn't working), and a salad. The girls watched Jeeves and Wooster and then listened to Irish music and sang, and the boys played a Star Wars game on the computer (or watched, as the case might be).
Lord, send out your Spirit, and renew the face of the earth!
This brings this week's journal to a close.