Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Peanut butter and dill pickle sandwich... "Your mom, grandpa Pat, and your Godmother went to your school too!"

I love starting with these oldies- this was 1986 - in the midst of my red plaid and with blouse era.  Even for me!  This sets the theme for today of our roots and sharing our family traditions and most importantly sharing our Faith as a Family on the Farm!  Yes, I had an entire drawer of hair accessories and still do!  Hence my trademark top knot with matching accessory!
When Rose was little she was so afraid of the cows and calves - "Rose cry a lot." was a name given her by her cousin, Gus, because she did just that cry all the time and very loudly!  Yes, when she got near to the barn she would cry and carry on, but when she was about 2 she realized that they were more afraid of her and looking up to the example of her older sister, Mary, who is an animal lover to the max... she is now brave and enjoys spending time chasing them or hand feeding them or coming out to see the new calves when their mothers are out of the barn eating.  She has equaled her siblings in her liking the cows and calves!
Rose with their new puppy Jenny.

This morning I had the joy of putting Kateri braids in Rose's hair before school.  With my 4 girls with their long dark hair - I would have that job going down the row before school each morning.  It is well known among the girls in our bunch that this is my joy as I can reclaim those happy times.  This morning Paul was glad to hand me the brush as he seems to feel inept at doing a girl's hair.  Although in their busy farm home growing up I have heard that oldest brother Paul would do his younger sister's hair before school.  LOVE it!
Yes, I was able to do their hair and match their dresses a few Easters back.  The delight I feel when I am able to capture the time with my girls "and then you had that boy."
Rose and I had such a sweet conversation this morning while we sat outside the school waiting for her to go in for her all day preschool.  She started by saying; "This is our school."  "Did you know that this was your mommy's school, Aunt Nancy's, Aunt Maria's and Aunt Susan, and Uncle John's school?"  "It was even your grandpa Pat's school and Uncle Ed's and Aunt RaTerra's!"  Her eyes got very big at all that.  I didn't mention that even her great-grandma Ann went to Holy Redeemer School!  Such rich and amazing heritage and ties that binds the family in our growing in Faith at home and assisted by our Catholic School!
Looks like we had rollers in their hair overnight in this one! 

Last night Mary asked me to make her a peanut butter and dill pickle sandwich!  This is totally from my side of the family, and I told Mary this was from the Crosses - my maiden name!  It is just so special and fun to see the tread of Family values and traditions flowing through our growing family!  There is such a richness to these generations of Faith/Family/Farm!
Shortly after Bernadette was born and she will be 4 in a few weeks!

St Paul to the Ephesians today is a reading that Nancy and Bill used in their wedding!  They had studied Theology of the Body by St JPII and they felt strongly this model of how a married couple is to reveal to the world the same beautiful LOVE and mystery of Jesus loving his Bride, The Church!
It all boils down to this final statement - Ephesians 5:33
This is a great mystery, but I speak in reference to Christ and the Church.  In any case , each one of you should love his wife as himself, and the wife should respect her husband. 
Maria and Joe on their wedding day visiting the statue where they prayed on their first date.  How they love and share with JOY their shared love for Mary and The Church!  Both discerned a call to be nun and priest!  That's what I call love!
Ruth and Paul 12 years ago with their first son, Simon.  These two have a wonderful Christ-filled marriage, too!  They say life-giving things and do life-giving things for each other!  Such a powerful message and something that I am learning from their example.  Too often we fall into the bad habit of being whiney and complaining and self-righteous with our spouse.  "Your wrong and I am right."  Where does it get you but frustrated and down in the dumps.  Where if you live the motto of The Community of the Lamb - "Wounded, I will not cease to love."  We can then top the cycle of hurt and hurting the other right back, by being loving and positive and life-giving not life-taking!
Then there is Little Sister Hallel/Susan, who listened to the Lord calling her to be his spouse and said "yes" with all her life and love and light!  She has the perfect spouse, Jesus Christ, and she loves The Church, His Bride!
And finally John discerned a year in the seminary after his life was spared after his battle with brain cancer.  "Why was I spared?  Am I called to be a priest and keep LIFE alive in this world?"  So far he has discerned not now, but talk about finding a love for The Church and Faith through brain cancer!
How can I not mention my own marriage to my champion for LIFE - Patrick Gerard? I think this picture taken on Labor Day is worth all the words I can pour out about him and how his answer to my question 39 years ago - "The World needs LIGHTS!" set the stage for our family of 14 with 7 in heaven praying for us and for our daughters' growing families.  In a week we will welcome #14 grandchild - Evangeline Mary!
Picture perfect just back from sharing Sunday mass as a family... Jesus fills us with so much love and joy at sharing our Faith as a family- the tie that binds!

Jesus, we are forever blessed by all the graces we receive through your Word, your Sacraments, your Saints, Our Lady and her rosary, our Guardian angels, who are super busy this time of year watching over the farmers and their families!  We are filled with all that we need to go forward down the narrow path being life-giving to all those around us - most especially those in our domestic Church/family.  May we share without hesitation the mercy and forgiveness we have been shown and die to self so that you may live in us and trough us.  Jesus, we trust in you.  May the small seed grow to bear much fruit in our lives.  By their fruit you will know them.  Amen and Hallelujah
Cousin love is wonderful!  Bless-bless, Barbara Luke

A wonderful picture of our dear Camden State Park at fall!  So many wonderful memories happened here with me and my brood and now Ruth spends a lot of time there with hers!

So real and positive for me!

In this is my hope eternal!
Pentatonix - Hallelujah
The Afters - Broken Hallelujah

A new generation loving those peanut butter and dill pickle sandwich!
School pictures 2016!
Artsy pic!
I am in heaven - cousin time in Missouri a week ago - Romeo and his cousin, Josephine!

Soon Therese will have her baby sister there!  Love this so much!
Firetruck attention getting!
Maria is one lucky mom to have such a wonderful loving oldest sister, and her brothers will love their new sister too!
I have been waiting for this... the official family photo taken by the photographer at Julia's wedding - look at that smile!
Ruth and John and her kids had already left - so this is not quite complete.  But amazing, just the same!  Mom is holding Josephine!
A great one of the kids tumbling down the hill
Weddings are a great way to connect - cousin time!

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