Thursday, July 9, 2020

Humble pie day is hard/"Peace be upon this house"/Birdie with the girls/raises an infant to his cheeks

 Birdie brought mom and dad and brother to Ruth's for pizza supper as Nancy was home for the day. 

She got to hang out with the bigger girls, Joy, who is 3 and Josephine who is 4... there is a group of 3 boys in 6 weeks including her big brother ,Jude, between Birdie and the bigger girls.  Evangeline in Fort Lewis has yet to meet her new baby cousin, and is also in this group of girl cousins at 3 1/2.  There are fake plans for all the cousins to come together at the end of August!
 Hanging out with the big girls!
 Grandma keeps trying for the perfect picture... a picture of life is what I call them, and that is a masterpiece like no other!
 It was tempting to get rid of this one, but Birdie was so sweet with the silly older girls.
 She shows signs of being a thumb sucker like all 4 of her Verly aunts! 

They certainly loved their naps with their blankets after lunch!  It made for a peaceful home indeed.  Maybe that is where I need to "put my feet up" after lunch.  That nap is sacred for my father, too, so that works all the way around.
 Grandma getting her attention!

Dad came out to breakfast this morning blessing our shared home for 12 weeks today with "Peace come upon this home"... straight from the Gospel today.  It is a good thing indeed, as especially today there is an edge in the air, after getting reprimanded in a few ways that is leaving me feeling poor, lowly, defeated, and less than great or wonderful.  I call is a huge piece of humble pie, and it is not an easy pill to swallow as it is bitter and huge enough to choke on!    I know we are called upon to be humble and hence I embrace it and turn to prayer over it!
 Enjoying some kicking time on one of Ruth's beautiful afghans...

The Gospel today from Matthew 10...
Jesus said to his Apostles:
“As you go, make this proclamation:
‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
Cure the sick, raise the dead,
cleanse the lepers, drive out demons.
Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.
Do not take gold or silver or copper for your belts;
no sack for the journey, or a second tunic,
or sandals, or walking stick.
The laborer deserves his keep.
Whatever town or village you enter, look for a worthy person in it,
and stay there until you leave.
As you enter a house, wish it peace..."

A tall order, and how I ask for that peace to dwell here in this home with my father now on hospice for 12 weeks!  Day after day of taking one day at a time and dealing with all that comes our way including those stumbles!
 Pat sharing with 2 of our girls - the two oldest and such shining lights in such different and wonderful ways - seeing the Truth of  Jesus and His Bride, The Church and sharing it with all they meet!
 Getting to hang out with the big girls is an unsure moment as they were a bit wiggly and touchy feely of her cheeks and head.  Then JoJo wanted to do some gymnastics close to Birdie and that was the end of a good thing.
 Nancy's kids are so brown - they have been blessed with her complexion.  They no longer have the pool a block away and live there every day as they did in KC, but now go to local beaches in the Cities or just spray the hose up in the air and stand under it! 
 George saw grandma and thought that mom was leaving him again with her... "Hide me mommy!"
 My little George gives me some smiles from the safety of mom's lap. 
 He loves his wheels and makes the "vrumm- vrumm" sound like an engine.  Like every boy of our 11 grandsons and his uncle John before him!
 Another car found on his exploration of the farm!
 Now with cousin, Jude, who is 6 weeks younger... both are 1 now, and going with their cars in two different directions!
 After making an arrangement for the anniversary of my sister, Mary's death this last week... I decided to bring one this morning for Mary of the Immaculate Conception in the School chapel where we are having our perpetual adoration!
 Humble, but full of LOVE for Mary, who is my strong companion and guide to bring my needs to her Son, Jesus Christ!

The first reading today from Hosea 11 - describes such a beautiful picture of how God loves us as we are truly His!
Yet it was I who taught Ephraim to walk,
who took them in my arms;
I drew them with human cords,
with bands of love;
I fostered them like one
who raises an infant to his cheeks;
Yet, though I stooped to feed my child,
they did not know that I was their healer.
Dad recalled that He was our healer, so we shared this reading before morning prayer today.  I loved the image of such loving care for us little ones.  I have witnessed my wonderful husband care for with genuine love our own little ones, and now our grandchildren.  How he loves those babies!  His big arms cradle them and he truly does raise the infants to his cheeks!
 Jewels from nature lifted up to her!
 A queen bedecked with her jewels!
 The black eyed Susans always remind me of my Susan... they were in a field on my way home from the farm yesterday and I stopped to pick some for My Lady's bouquet.  The rest are from my garden - the zinnias that Ruth and the kids planted for my Mother's Day gift!  The yellow rose was from the window box Ruth planted for Birdie's baptism on my porch railing. 
 Jesus on the altar for perpetual adoration!

Love this quote from St Mother Teresa...
"People ask: 'What will convert America
and save the world?' My answer is prayer.
What we need is for every parish
to come before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament
in holy hours of prayer." - St Teresa of Calcutta

Yes! This is so powerful and such a gift even  at 4a!
 "My Lord and My God!"  I place all of our combined families in the monstrance with Jesus - living and the dead!  It adds up to over 250+ and takes me at least half of my hour.  I place the 30 living and 13 dead from our immediate family in there twice as we are in both families!  It feels extra special powerful and wonderful to do that heartfelt prayer - "Jesus and Mary, I love you.  Save souls!"  repeated over and over when the last one is placed in the monstrance with God, the maker of heaven and earth! 
 I am sure they will be gone due to fading and wilting by next week, but a few over these next days will enjoy them and know that She is loved beyond measure!

This!!!  LOVE!
 She crushes the head of Satan!  May we echo her "Yes, may it be done to me according to your Word."  By humble submission to His will in our lives and not our own wills or wishes!
Mary reaching out to her Son for me... The Queen bedecked with her jewels!
Isaiah 61:10 10I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
 Me and my little namesake, Birdie Barbara, who is 8 weeks old now and thriving!

Jesus, yes, I am weak and lowly and that is when I turn to you.  I am nothing without you and may I die to self so that you may live in me and I may become your hands and feet and speak of your Truth to the highest heavens!  May your peace stay within these walls and may we do your work of prayer without ceasing and growing in your Truth!  Amen and Hallelujah
 I am getting her trained to look at the camera with some curiosity.  Yes, grandma is so much into pictures that you might call it an obsession!  I blame having a hunky husband with babies and baby animals on the interesting farm for 42 years, and thank fully the babies just keep coming with Birdie #19!  I guess that I should try to be less crazy, but... Bless-bless, Barbara
The two one year old boys looked up at the same time... a miracle before they both went off with their cars in opposite directions!  A picture of LIFE!

Maybe there was a Lady bug in that bouquet - that would make her smile!
Danielle Rose - Memorare
Danielle Rose - Hail Holy Queen
Danielle Rose - a Mother's song - the Crucifixion
Danielle did each mystery of the rosary to song - check it out!

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

"Seek to serve him constantly"/Nancy coming for the day/dad praying for those living The Kingdom

 Joy in her mom's garden with a handfull of beans I picked to bring home for dad and I and Pat.  She just got back from her 3 year old check up and passed - healthy!

I had to run some tools and beverage on this hot day out to the men working on a fence, so I swung into the farm on my way by.
 Ruth's beautiful porch set up for the 4th!  How we all love to sit here and share family time!

Ruth informed me that Nancy is on her way for the day on the farm.  We hope she is bringing along her water slide, or I predict they will be heading out to Camden State Park and the pond there we frequented when the girls were growing up.
 Soon we will have tomatoes for eating and then the work begins!  Canning for 7 families!

First will be tomato soup as that is missed by my father very much.  I fed the last jar a month ago and have since done something that I haven't done in years - probably 42 years as that is when I came to the farm!  Buy tomato soup in the store! 
 I am humbled to see Ruth's amazing garden so clean and thriving!  Why humbled?  Because mine is a mess in comparison.  Pat has had to get on my case every one of those 42 years to keep the weeds out.  The plastic has helped, but still every opening has weeds that love to grow and grow and grow. 
 Ruth's luxuriant wax beans!  I got a big handfull off just a few plants!  She is a master gardener in my book. 

Ruth does say that she doesn't remember my gardening being that horrible growing up... probably because I had her to help me being the oldest of the 5, and I did have my kids help me weed and pick as soon as they were able.  I do miss the help now that I really need it!  I am grateful that Ruth and her 6 come and help me plant my garden as a Mother's Day gift of all gifts!  I can think of nothing better under the sun!
 Joy just back from her 3 year old check up!  She is wearing the stickers she was given.  Mom says that she is at the 99% for height and 70 for weight and healthy in every way...  I love her JOY smiles!
 It will be the year of many apples!  Joy getting ready to pick one, but left it to grow big and get sweeter.

Ruth was saying that the dread of all the work ahead takes some of the joy out of having so many apples!  Last year we had none, but this year we will be feeding many pails to the cows and spending days on applesauce and wonderful pie filling. 
 Apple JOY!

Dad is having an off day starting with a poor night of sleep.  We are hoping that it is just that - a small step back in his dance called dancing into the sunset of his life.  When we prayed this morning he asked mother to help him.  Along with the bad night, breakfast was poor, and he is requesting pain gel on his shoulder.  Each day is what we face as it is given to us...
 Dad on the porch where we share the rosary and chaplet each day at 3p!

Even on the poor days we still cling to our prayer time together and that is truly the "work" that we do together and keeps us reasonably calm and peaceful with one another.   Yes, we have those times where tempers flare, but they do not last long.
 Our view of the prairie landscape we gaze out at as we pray.

Even though dad had a poor night and breakfast was a failure... we still did morning prayer of The Church together.  It gives us the armor of God to face what lies ahead.  Dad also prayed for those that are sharing The Kingdom of God with all those they come in contact with.  Most especially he mentioned in prayer Little Sister Hallel and her Community of The Lamb, and how they live and share with all they come in contact with the life of loving and following Jesus in all you do and say and work and pray and beg from the poor!
 Love this of my Most Cherished Cross, farmer Patrick, a year ago with his 3 granddaughters, who are 3 going on 4 now!  Joy and Josephine will be together on this hot day on the farm!
 Visiting Mary while out pulling weeds from the mailbox.

These words from Psalm 105 from the mass today ring like a bell for me, who am given the strength from our shared work of prayer...
Look to the LORD in his strength;
seek to serve him constantly.
Recall the wondrous deeds that he has wrought,
his portents, and the judgments he has uttered.
R. Seek always the face of the Lord.
Psalm 105

I can say for a fact that I would have failed to continue on this journey with any kind of strength or willingness without the gift I am given of sharing with my father in his "religious life" as a permanent deacon for 44 years now.  it is my JOY and strength and allows me to weakly and poorly with poverty and humility serve him constantly.  Twelve weeks tomorrow and no way of knowing how long or how it will play out.
 Michigan from 6 years ago... those wonderful family times on the big lake are sorely missed by this old grandma.  There are fake plans to have us all together at the end of the summer! 

Today I will just relish having my two oldest together here on the farm... Maybe here for lunch on my porch.
 Sharing the office/morning prayer on Sunday with John and my father.  So powerful and special for me to have that kind of support from the men in my life.  Hubby and I pray morning prayer most days before we get up to face the day!
 A gift from Hallel on Sunday!  The chickens that will now give them eggs and...
 It looks like the source of a play about chickens.  As dad prayed today they share their message of how wonderful our Faith can be if only we share it with great JOY!

The Gospel from Matthew today... Jesus sends out the 12 to heal, and share that "The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand." Matthew 10  Such powerful evidence of this LOVE for us is seen in those glowing faces!  Witnessing how Jesus can give us the fruits of His Spirit! 
Ruth has the vision and displays her beautiful newly remodeled farmhouse - over 100 years old and where she grew up on the farm - now filled with her 6 children!  Living the life she grew up with, and that fills me with so much happiness.  Knowing that she chose that and now lives it much more beautifully than I ever did.  I sit at her feet and learn from her how to be a farm wife. 

Paul and Ruth show me how to live married life also, by being LIFE giving and not LIFE taking.  All that is said and done is out of LOVE and gives LIFE!  I have adopted calling my Pat -"honey" and that helps me to be more loving in my voice and my actions.  It has taken me 41 years to learn that lesson and I still fail at the slightest provocation! 
9 years ago - 6 week old Augustine and his mom.  Today he might be out working with the men in the hot humid heat putting in a new fence.  He might wonder if it was a great idea to come to the farm today!

Jesus, how we need to have you with us each moment of each day!  May we die to self so that you may live in us!  So that we may give without counting the cost.  We are so grateful for the help that hospice has given us to stagger down this narrow path with our sights on heaven forever at the end.  To have mother there so recently truly keeps our eyes on you!  Jesus, we trust in you.  Amen and Hallelujah

Wow!  I just realized that Maria has updated her blog!  So many pictures I could have borrowed today!  Such a special gift that our farm daughter with her 6 and our military daughter with her 6 could spend some wonderful days together sharing their lives!

The two red heads and the 2 three year olds sharing a military vehicle of some sort!

Checking out ocean life on the sound.  Seeing a part of the country that they likely will not visit again - all the way to the Pacific!

A night under their dome... More pictures to share another day!  Bless-bless, Barbara
How we love to have those precious family times to share... Pat has a ticket to fly out and bring back the military family to the farm for a couple weeks ending after Labor Day!  Maybe Hallel will come through on a road trip at that time?!?  Lots of hopes and prayers and "fake plans!"

Patrick's First Communion shared with the Lanoues!

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