Outdoors...rain, rain, rain. April showers...we have just a few more days of April showers and then it's officially a miserable spring. But, actually it was sunny almost all last week so I can't complain, and I'm really not. You know me, I'm a rainy day girl.
I am thinking about...what I said in my last post about pulling back from blogging. Actually, pulling back from sharing so much, actually online and in real life with people I just don't really know.
I think that I need to explain myself a little bit more.
When I started homeschooling, in this not-terribly-Catholic-city of Columbus, Ohio, I felt very isolated. There is no one in my neighborhood who I can relate to, none Catholic, none with children home during the day. There was a Catholic homeschool support group when we started, and they were in the midst of a big split, and in all honesty, they were very unkind to each other, these Catholic homeschooling women, and I was very turned off from both groups (the old group and the new one forming from the offshoot). I decided not to join either group and ever since I have been alone, really. I had a very close friend who really got me into homeschooling, by sharing her curriculum choices and showing me that it was not a weird life, but actually very holy. And for a few years we did a lot of things together with the kids, and just the two of us, and it was not so isolated at all. But then, she put her children back in school, and now it's just Faith and I at home and I feel very isolated.
Faith has a lot of friends. She has neighborhood friends now (after school) and she meets girls in dance two days a week, but the dance moms, at least the ones who stick around during the lessons, are very dance involved, and I am not -- I don't think this is going to be a lifestyle for Faith.
So, I feel very alone a lot. Which brings me to why I really grabbed on to blogging. All those friends I would have in this not-so-Catholic-city are all over the country. And they are online. They are just like me, but because they are all over the country, I only know them from a web page. Yes, that's weird. But, is it so weird today? I don't know. I am old mama and I guess it's sort of true about old dogs. I have a hard time, often, accepting these friends as real friends, even though I think they are more real than real friends in many ways (like Jennie said in the comments of my last post). Online friends tell me what's going on frequently, whereas the real friends I have are busy with their busy lives and we only catch up occasionally and then it certainly isn't what's going on daily.
But there is the whole "online" thing I worry about. So, you might notice that I am not sharing quite the details I have been sharing. But, I'll try. I read a passage in Shirt of Flame last night (at the bottom of this post) and I felt like I knew exactly what the author was saying. And I think that I am looking for too much affirmation from the online community, affirmation I should be looking for from God. The problem is we don't always feel that affirmation from God and instead we feel alone. But, I suppose that is part of this world.
I am wearing...a denim skirt, a black v-neck top and a cardigan sweater, and blue suede loafers.
I am reading...I am still reading Shirt of Flame, but listening to Elizabeth Berg's Dream When You're Feeling Blue, a great story about WWII America, specifically through the eyes of an Irish Catholic family in Chicago, and read by the author.
Coincidentally I also started watching a show through Netflix called Bomb Girls, about women working in munitions factories during WWII. It's a good program, a little racy for the day (though it was produced recently), but nothing compared to most television. It is actually set in Canada.
I am creating...a Tiny Tea Leaves cardigan, but I leaned on my acrylic KnitPicks needle (which they don't sell any more. wonder why? urg) and it snapped, so now I am waiting for a new needle. I am switching from the KnitPicks' needles to Knitter's Pride -- the needles feel stronger.
In the meantime I have knit a washcloth and a half for the kitchen. It's good practical knitting and I love it.
I am waiting on parts for several rosaries, but I'm not working on any just now. I am starting a consecration bracelet for my mother-in-law who lost hers somewhere in Florida. Anyone in Florida find one?
At the school table...we had spring break last week and yesterday morning Faith woke feeling miserable. She either has a bad cold or the worst allergies I have ever seen. She is only allergic to one thing -- maple trees -- and they happen to be in full bloom, so I can't rule out allergies. She sneezed a lot, even in the middle of the night, but she doesn't have itchy eyes so I really think it's a cold. Either way, she is still sleeping and I doubt we'll have a productive day.
On the table...I cooked all weekend, so last night I pulled some chili from the freezer. Tonight, however, I think we'll have Guiness Beef Stew (made with something other than Guiness). I've been investigating some budget cooking, but I am having a really hard time finding recipes my family will eat. It's not budget cooking if it all goes in the trash. Any suggestions?
I am going to...do laundry and iron and probably not teach school today.
A few of my favorite things...
...rainy days...soft, steady rain
...cream of wheat for breakfast
...Every day in May for Mary (coming soon!)
Prayers sent heavenward for...
...my husband and children...all those who are sick and alone
...my youngest son, for whatever God's plan is for him and for Him to know what his part is
...our priests and religious, especially our parish priests, and Fr. Howe
...all the babies whose mothers are contemplating abortion this week, for a change of heart
Thought for the day...
[The woman] will need great courage if she is to recognize and confront the half-conscious plotting and scheming of the animus in order to get her own way or to prove herself in the right. Thus she enters on the quest for her true identity as an individual woman. The way will bring her into darkness and loneliness, through fire and water, but at the last she will begin to discover consciously that unpossessive love between persons brings renewal of faith in life itself and finally the agape of wholeness.
The "agape of wholeness" never means indifferent or cold; it simply means walking our own paths while leaving our loved ones to theirs. Agape means that we refrain from projecting our unworked-through issues upon the folks around us. Agape means loving people for the simple fact that they exist. In fact, fully living his own life, and giving with no expectation of return, was the way that Christ conducted all his relationships.