Friday, December 24, 2010

Ero Cras

And so we have completed the O Antiphons and it is Christmas Eve. But the Antiphons leave us with yet one more message for today....

But first, we must make an acrostic of the first letter of each Latin word in the order in which the Antiphons are given, as follows:



Radix Jesse

Clavis David


Rex Gentium


And then, we spell that word backwards: Erocras, or

Ero Cras.

And then we translate...

"I will be (here) tomorrow."

And He will!

* * *

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to thee O Israel!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

O Emmanuel

O Emmanuel, Rex et legifer noster, exspectatio gentium, et Salvator earum: veni ad salvandum nos Domine Deus noster.

O Emmanuel, our King and our Law-giver, Longing of the Gentiles, yea, and salvation thereof, come to save us, O Lord our God!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Schedule of Christmas Masses

The Traditional Latin Mass will be celebrated by Father Gregory Lockwood at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church on the following days during the upcoming Christmas season:

Friday, December 24

"Midnight" Mass - 8:00 p.m.

Sunday, December 26
Sunday in the Octave of Christmas - 1:30 p.m.

Saturday, January 1, 2011
Circumcision of Our Lord - 12:00 noon

Sunday, January 2, 2011
Holy Name of Jesus - 1:30 p.m.

All Masses held at:

St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church
1420 Sappington Road
Crestwood, MO 63126

**Please note: There will be no Traditional Latin Mass for Epiphany, Thursday, January 6, nor will there be the usual First Friday
Latin Mass on January 7 at St. Elizabeth's as Father Lockwood will be away on retreat.

* * *

Merry Christmas one and all!

O King of the Gentiles

O Rex Gentium, et desideratus earum, lapisque angularis, qui facis utraque unum: veni, et salva hominem, quem de limo formasti.

O King of the Gentiles, yea, and desire thereof! O Corner-stone, that makest of two one, come to save man, whom Thou hast made out of the dust of the earth!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

O Dayspring

O Oriens, splendor lucis æternæ, et sol justitiæ: veni, et illumina sedentes in tenebris, et umbra mortis.

O Dayspring, Brightness of the everlasting light, Son of justice, come to give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death!

Monday, December 20, 2010

O Key of David

O Clavis David, et sceptrum domus Israel; qui aperis, et nemo claudit; claudis, et nemo aperit: veni, et educ vinctum de domo carceris, sedentem in tenebris, et umbra mortis.

O Key of David, and Sceptre of the house of Israel, that openeth and no man shutteth, and shutteth and no man openeth, come to liberate the prisoner from the prison, and them that sit in darkness, and in the shadow of death.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

O Root of Jesse

O Radix Jesse, qui stas in signum populorum, super quem continebunt reges os suum, quem Gentes deprecabuntur: veni ad liberandum nos, jam noli tardare.

O Root of Jesse, which standest for an ensign of the people, at Whom the kings shall shut their mouths, Whom the Gentiles shall seek, come to deliver us, do not tarry.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

O Lord of Israel

O Adonai, et Dux domus Israel, qui Moysi in igne flammæ rubi apparuisti, et ei in Sina legem dedisti: veni ad redimendum nos in brachio extento.

O Lord of Israel, and Ruler of the house of Israel, Who didst appear unto Moses in the burning bush, and gavest him the law in Sinai, come to redeem us with an outstretched arm!

Friday, December 17, 2010

O Wisdom

O Sapientia, quæ ex ore Altissimi prodiisti, attingens a fine usque ad finem, fortiter suaviterque disponens omnia: veni ad docendum nos viam prudentiæ.

O Wisdom that comest out of the mouth of the Most High, that reachest from one end to another, and orderest all things mightily and sweetly, come to teach us the way of prudence!

Friday, December 3, 2010

St. Andrew Novena

Hail and blessed be the hour and moment

in which the Son of God was born

of the most pure Virgin Mary, at midnight, in Bethlehem,

in piercing cold.

In that hour, vouchsafe, O my God!

to hear my prayer and grant my desires,

through the merits of Our Savior Jesus Christ,

and of His Blessed Mother.


* * *

It is piously believed that whoever recites the above prayer fifteen times a day from the feast of St. Andrew (30th November) until Christmas will obtain what is asked.

+MICHAEL AUGUSTINE, Archbishop of New York
New York, February 6, 1897

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Schedule of Traditional Latin Masses at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church

Father Gregory Lockwood will celebrate the Traditional Latin Mass on the following days in the Advent and Christmas Seasons (in addition to the regularly scheduled Sunday TLM at 1:30 p.m.):

First Friday
Friday, December 3, 6:30 a.m.

Feast of the Immaculate Conception
Wednesday, December 8, 12:00 noon

"Midnight" Mass
Friday, December 24, 8:00 p.m.

Octave of Christmas, Circumcision of Our Lord
Saturday, January 1, 2011, 12:00 noon

All Masses held at:

St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church
1420 Sappington Road
Crestwood, MO 63126

* * *

May all my dear readers have a blessed and holy Advent!

Friday, November 19, 2010

St. Elizabeth of Hungary

Today is the day the Church remembers St. Elizabeth of Hungary, a saint who has been near and dear to my heart since I took her name at my Confirmation in 1995.

The recent words of Our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI on St. Elizabeth of Hungary can be read here, and her biography can be read here.

* * *

Dear Saint Elizabeth of Hungary
Pray for Us!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

America's Catholic History

One of the many things I love about homeschooling is how much I learn as I prepare and teach the various subjects to the boys. I find it amazing that I graduated from high school with a high grade point average, but came away knowing so little in the subject of history. Now, I'm not placing any blame on the public school system; I think I just didn't apply myself to the courses. I memorized what information would be on the tests, usually scored well, then let the information flow right back out the other ear. History at that time didn't mean very much to me, unfortunately. Now, more than a couple of decades later, I'm teaching history to my boys and I'm finding myself curious and interested, perhaps for the first time in my life. I now have the interest that makes all the facts and information found on those dreaded Trivial Pursuit history questions, stick!

In the boys' studies we've covered various eras from the nomads in Mesopotamia to the Greeks, Roman History, Bible History, and now we've jumped forward to the early explorers, leading into our main focus this year in early American History. Our main text is From Sea to Shining Sea . It is an interesting read-aloud, and it is an excellent springboard from which to jump to more in-depth study, if desired, of the major historical figures as we encounter them. Another thing I like about this text is that it emphasizes the Catholic roots of our nation and, therefore, details the lives of people who in many cases I have never heard of, given my secular history education.

One such man we've studied in recent weeks is Father Juan de Padilla. Fr. Padilla accompanied Spanish Conquistador Francisco Vásquez de Coronado as he explored much of what is now the southwest United States in 1541-42. Fr. Padilla's love for the Indian tribes he encountered and evangelized caused him to stay behind when Coronado returned to Mexico. He journeyed into what is now Kansas, offered the first documented Mass within US boundaries near Ft. Dodge, KS, in 1541, and it was in Kansas that he was martyred, becoming the United States' Protomartyr.

Last night at dinner our boys were talking about what they had learned lately in history. They were able to tell their dad about Fr. Padilla's life, and that he was the first martyr in what is now the US. My husband had not heard of him either, but wondered about his martyrdom in Kansas. Is there a shrine somewhere to this Franciscan priest? We didn't know, and that was as far as the discussion went, until in today's mail we received the answer!

We are on the mailing list of a Catholic newsletter, Regina Coeli Report. As I opened the latest issue today, how very surprised was I to read the following title of one of the articles: Trek to the Padilla Cross: The Santa Fe Pilgrimage. The article was about a group of 53 Catholic men and boys who this past summer had gone on an annual pilgrimage to the Padilla Cross, just west of Lyons, KS. How convenient to have our questions about this holy priest and the shrine dedicated to him answered so quickly!

The history of our nation is rich, indeed, and it is sprinkled with the blood of many Catholic priests and religious as they gave their lives to convert the native Indian tribes that occupied this land 500 years ago. For my own information (not as part of my boys' studies) I am reading another book on this subject: Discovering A Lost Heritage: The Catholic Origins of America by Adam S. Miller. Mr. Miller provides an in-depth look at America's Catholic heritage and how, unfortunately, it has been left out of the history texts in our schools today. What an interesting read.

And so, having studied the Spanish Franciscan priests, we will be moving north and to the French explorers and the Jesuits and their efforts to spread the gospel in America. I am blessed, indeed, that through homeschooling I have a second opportunity to learn the history of our nation and world, with the appreciation and desire that I didn't have during my own school years. And it is my hope that I will be able to impart to my boys a hunger to know their roots in a way that will stick with them beyond their schoolroom days.

Trivial Pursuit anyone??

* * *

God bless you!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Pizza Hut

Our family likes pizza. We have it 1-2 times per month I guess, and while St. Louis does boast some pretty good local pizza joints, one of our favorite pizzas is still the national chain, Pizza Hut.

This time of year, besides our preference for their pizza, we have another incentive to head there once a month: the boys are participating in the Pizza Hut Book-It program for homeschoolers. It's a simple program wherein the kids are motivated to read a specified number of pages or books in order to earn a certificate for a Personal Pan Pizza with the topping of their choice. One certificate can be earned per month from October '10 through March '11. The boys being pretty willing readers anyway, I'd bet we'll be heading out for pizza each month.

And since that is so, I just have to say the Pizza Hut in south county is one my husband and I particularly enjoy and even recommend. But you ask, isn't a Pizza Hut a Pizza Hut?? Yes and no. The food? Yes. This particular location? No. Here's what we like a lot about it:

No crayons for the kids. No coloring books. No video games. No music. No televisions. You read that right! There are no distractions whatever to a family coming in, sitting down and having pizza and talking together about their day. We did this tonight. We listened to our kids tell us about their day at homeschool co-op including the musical they're in ('Annie Jr.'). We talked of other things, including some of the pictures on the restaurant walls of St. Louis sports figures and venues of decades past. It was a very pleasant and relaxing time out, and the pizza was good, as it always is.

I don't know about you, but my idea of a nice family dinner out is decidely NOT in playing tic-tac-toe or box-in-my-initials (or whatever the silly game is called) with my son while we wait for our food. It is also not in adding a chunk o' change to the bill by allowing the boys to spend a few minutes in the video den. I don't care to have to scream at my husband across the table in order for him to hear me over the music (even if they're playing stuff we like), and I can't stand how my kids are positively glued to the nearest TV set as they eat, no matter the program content.

Since we do eat out occasionally, we will undoubtedly encounter and endure some or all of the above again; it just seems like it goes with restaurant territory anymore. I just don't happen to think kids need to be entertained while they sit with Mom and Dad and wait for their food, eat their food, or patiently wait for the bill to be taken care of. But then, I don't like Happy Meals either. As I tell my boys, "You oughta be happy you're getting a meal", and that's how I feel at sit-down restaurants too.

Suffice it to say, though, the south county Pizza Hut does things right, in our estimation, and I thought some of you out there might like to be let in on the secret. And hey, they've included homeschoolers in their reading-incentive program and I think that's pretty awesome!

Monday, November 1, 2010

All Saints/All Souls Masses

And now, from the department of *better late than never*...

Fr. Gregory Lockwood will offer
the Traditional Latin Mass
at 12:00 noon on

November 1 for All Saints Day
November 2 for All Souls Day

St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church
1420 South Sappington
Crestwood, MO

All you Holy Angels and Saints, pray for us!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The School Bell Rings Again!

We started school this week here at St. Michael the Archangel Homeschool. All is going quite well with our new 4th and 5th grade boys; in fact, they have both shown a little more enthusiasm and willingness in their studies than their last couple of weeks of summer break might have predicted! We’re off to a good start!

I am one of those homeschooling moms that, at least thus far, can never find the ‘perfect’ packaged curriculum. So, I pick this subject from one provider, that course from another, always comparing what I pull together for my boys with several respected Catholic curricula providers.

One tool we use across many subjects in our school is that of Copybook. Copybook is just what it sounds like, a book in which the student copies any given material that they may read and find interesting, or that I may dictate to them for any of a number of purposes, whether to help commit a passage to memory, to practice their best handwriting, or simply to practice the skill of listening and precisely doing. At the end of the year the result is a very nice book of quotes, passages, poems, journal entries, all of which together tell the story of some of what they studied throughout that year. Our boys especially enjoy adding an illustration here and there.

So, today we prepared our Copybooks for this school year, complete with title page, name and date begun. We also added a quote at the bottom of the title page, one which I think is truly inspirational and which succinctly states the purpose for the simple practice of Copybook:

Sir, if you will be so good as to favor me with a blank book, I will transcribe the most remarkable occurrences I meet with in my reading, which will serve to fix them upon my mind.

~John Quincy Adams, age 10, taken from a letter to his father.

* * *

A blessed new school year to you all!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Summer Days

It's a 90+ degree summer day. The clouds roll in and it appears that the cell over the house will burst any moment. And it does, with a vengeance.

You're an 8-10 year old boy. Is there any place you'd rather be than inside a pup-tent with your brother, your dog and your survival kit (snacks, various books, a favorite toy or two, some paper and pencils to draw with when you get bored, and a blanket in case of a sudden and unexpected drop in temperature) in the backyard?

Sounds like summer fun to me. It sure is a lot of fun to watch from the dining room window, anyway.

* * *

I've been scarce in these parts since school ended the last part of May. One would think I'd have more time to blog during the summer months than while teaching school, but it has not been so. Between taking an online class of my own (and its homework!) in preparation to teach a course called Classical Writing--Homer to my boys, planning the other subjects for next school year, and just trying to enjoy time off with the kids, I've found little time to attend to My Morning Cup.

And it's not likely to get better, as my mom is coming in for a visit tomorrow! She'll be with us for a few weeks, which will fill our days up with chatting, baking, chatting, playing with the boys, chatting, going on little outings, chatting, canning/freezing garden veggies, chatting... well, you get the idea. We are all very excited to welcome her here again!

So, dear readers, I will pick this up again as time allows. In the meantime, I hope you are all having and enjoying a blessed summer break from the usual school routine, with some precious moments to observe your own kids doing what they do best: being kids.

* * *

Now the rain has stopped and the sun is shining again; think I'll go help the boys set up that lemonade stand....

God bless you!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Prayer Against Storms

'Tis the season, here in the midwest, for nasty storms which may include heavy rain, hail, high winds, severe thunderstorms, and tornadoes. They can be pretty unnerving to watch and listen to. This year, more than in years past, our boys get particularly worried when the skies darken and the storm moves in. A trip to the basement, 'just in case', signals a level of danger that they dread.

The other day, in the wake of losing power for 24 hours after a severe storm, I was talking to a very good friend of mine about this. She suggested the following prayer, noting that she and her family pray it faithfully as storms approach. We have since used it and, besides that storm turning out not nearly as severe as anticipated, it gave us all the confidence that comes in knowing God is in control of these tempests. The boys are greatly comforted in praying this prayer.

* * *

The Prayer or Blessing Against Storms
(found on page 28 Pieta Prayer Book)

At each '†', make the Sign of The Cross

Jesus Christ a King of Glory has come in Peace.† God became man,† and the Word was made flesh.† Christ was born of a Virgin.† Christ suffered.† Christ was crucified.† Christ died.† Christ rose from the dead.† Christ ascended into Heaven.† Christ conquers.† Christ reigns.† Christ orders.† May Christ protect us from all storms and lightning† Christ went through their midst in Peace,† and the word was made flesh.† Christ is with us with Mary.† Flee you enemy spirits because the Lion of the Generation of Juda, the Root David, has won.† Holy God!† Holy Powerful God!† Holy Immortal God!† Have mercy on us. Amen!

God bless you and keep you safe!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ascension Thursday Mass at St. Elizabeth of Hungary

For all who wish to attend Mass for Ascension Thursday on, well, Thursday:

Father Gregory Lockwood, assisted by seminarians from Kenrick-Glennon Seminary, will offer a Solemn High (Traditional Latin) Mass at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church in Crestwood, this Thursday, May 13 at 7:00 pm.

God bless you!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

My Name is 'Mom'

My name is ‘Mom’ to my two little boys,
In all of my life I’ve known no greater joys.

By Our Dear Lord I have surely been blest,
Of all of my ‘jobs’, this one's no doubt the best!

My hours are long, my breaks are few,
My paycheck is non-existent, it’s true.

But oh, the rewards, they come everyday,
In every form, in every way.

The kiss from my son with spaghetti-stained lips,
The constant boy-chatter on family trips.

The nondescript rock: ‘Mom, look at my treasure!’
Their gleaming blue eyes, a reward beyond measure.

The hugs, the I-love-you’s, the ‘Mom, don’t go’ plea,
The sleepy-time sweetness, oh how they love me.

My eyes fill with tears and my heart overflows,
How thankful I am, Our Loving Lord knows.

Indeed, I am blest, for God to me came,
He gave me these boys and He made ‘Mom’ my name.

* * *

A lovely Mother's Day to all Moms!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Favorite Music

Our boys have a penmanship book in which they practice their cursive handwriting. In their book each day they are asked to copy a verse from Scripture, or answer a question about their favorite this or that. Today the topic was music.

As I've mentioned here before, we listen to classical music each day during school. Naturally the boys have their favorites, and they both listed them in their best cursive handwriting. On both lists were Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker. Though I try to save this one mainly for play during the Christmas season, they would both listen to it year-round.

Another piece that they both like is Beethoven's 7th Symphony. I have to admit to this being a current favorite of mine, too, especially the second movement. I was unfamiliar with it until a couple of months ago when my husband and I watched the Nicholas Cage movie, Knowing. At the end of the movie when the world is about to be destroyed, strangely enough, the most beautiful music begins. I took note of it as we watched, and purposely watched all the end credits to find out the name and composer of the piece. When I saw it was Beethoven's 7th, I knew I needed to add it to our music collection. I did, and the boys soon picked up on it too, to the point that my oldest can be heard humming it frequently. I highly recommend it to those who enjoy classical music!

The final favorite on my youngest son's list would make any mother proud. What was it that he placed in the company of such masters as Tchaikovsky, Beethoven and Handel?? Are you ready?

The Chipmunks.

What can I say, the boy has taste.

God bless you!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Novenas for Pope Benedict XVI

In light of the present tribulation facing Our Holy Father, the faithful are encouraged to join in prayer for His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI.

The Knights of Columbus are asking us to join in this novena which begins today, April 11, and ends on April 19, the 5th anniversary of the Holy Father’s election in 2005:


Lord, source of eternal life and truth,
give to your shepherd, Benedict, a spirit
of courage and right judgment, a spirit
of knowledge and love. By governing
with fidelity those entrusted to his care,
may he, as successor to the Apostle
Peter and Vicar of Christ, build your
Church into a sacrament of unity, love
and peace for all the world. Amen.

V/ Let us pray for Benedict, the pope.

R/ May the Lord preserve him,
give him a long life,
make him blessed upon the earth,
and not hand him over
to the power of his enemies.

V/ May your hand
be upon your holy servant.

R/ And upon your son,
whom you have anointed.

Our Father… Hail Mary… Glory Be…

Prayer Card (Single Copy)

* * *

The Institute of Christ the King will be offering a spiritual bouquet to Our Holy Father, and a Novena, with the same intention. From their website:

"Desiring to show our filial support and gratitude to our Holy Father, the Institute of Christ the King wishes to offer an abundant spiritual bouquet to His Holiness. Your prayers are needed! To participate in this spiritual bouquet, please use our online form below. Simply indicate the number and types of prayers you wish to offer. This spiritual bouquet will then be presented directly to His Holiness." A link to the form to add your prayers to the bouquet is here.

In honor of Pope Benedict XVI's 5th anniversary, the Institute also invites the faithful to join in this Novena which begins on Saturday, April 24, and ends on Sunday, May 2:

O Lord, we are the millions of believers, humbly kneeling at Thy feet and begging Thee to preserve, defend and save the Sovereign Pontiff for many years. He is the Father of the great fellowship of souls and our Father as well. On this day, as on every other day, he is praying for us also, and is offering unto Thee with holy fervor the sacred Victim of love and peace.

Wherefore, O Lord, turn Thyself toward us with eyes of pity; for we are now, as it were, forgetful of ourselves, and are praying above all for him. Do Thou unite our prayers with his and receive them into the bosom of Thine infinite mercy, as a sweet savor of active and fruitful charity, whereby the children are united in the Church to their Father. All that he asks of Thee this day, we too ask it of Thee in union with him.

Whether he weeps or rejoices, whether he hopes or offers himself as a victim of charity for his people, we desire to be united with him; nay more, we desire that the cry of our hearts should be made one with his. Of Thy great mercy grant, O Lord, that not one of us may be far from his mind and his heart in the hour that he prays and offers unto Thee the Sacrifice of Thy blessed Son. At the moment when our venerable High Priest, holding in His hands the very Body of Jesus Christ, shall say to the people over the Chalice of benediction these words: "The peace of the Lord be with you always," grant, O Lord, that Thy sweet peace may come down upon our hearts and upon all the nations with new and manifest power. Amen. (Raccolta, N. 653)

* * *

Our Holy Father needs the Church Militant right now. What can we do? We can pray. Let us join together and support Pope Benedict XVI. May God strengthen and bless the Vicar of Christ!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Sunday at St. Elizabeth of Hungary

Easter Mass at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Parish in Crestwood, Missouri - the first celebration of Holy Mass in Latin on Easter Sunday in over 40 years. The Traditional Latin Mass is celebrated every Sunday at 1:30 pm. Deo Gratias!

Happy and Blessed Easter,
one and all!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Good Friday

Lesson Eighth, Question 80, Baltimore Catechism No. 2 ~

Q: Why do you call that day "good" on which Christ died so sorrowful a death?

We call that day "good" on which Christ died because by His death He showed His great love for man, and purchased for him every blessing.

A blessed Good Friday to all.

Thursday, April 1, 2010


I read the following quote on my sister-in-law's Facebook status today and thought it worth repeating here:

"Our Lord always reigns; when it is not by the benefit of His presence, it is by the chaos brought by His absence."

--Louis-Edouard Cardinal Pie.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Those Smoked Gouda Potatoes

I've read about 'em more than once over on Delena's blog, the recipe for 'em comes from Mrs. Thetimman... enough already, I'm gonna make 'em! As a side dish to our Easter dinner, the main dish of which will be a spiral-sliced honey-glazed ham, I will serve the now-famous Smoked Gouda Potatoes:

Smoked Gouda Scalloped Potatoes

2 lbs Russet potatoes, peeled and sliced 1/4 or 1/8-inch thin
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/2 lb smoked Gouda cheese, shredded
7 oz can diced green chiles
white pepper (I'll use black)
1 cup heavy cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In 13x9-inch pan, layer half the potatoes, parmesan, gouda and chiles. Salt and pepper to taste. Then add remaining potatoes, chiles, parmesan, and gouda. (Be sure to cover chiles with cheese to "hide" them.) Add additional salt and pepper, to taste. Pour cream around sides of the pan.

Bake for 20 minutes, uncovered. Cover with foil. Bake an additional 40 minutes, or until potatoes reach desired tenderness.

Yields up to 10 servings.

* * *

Don't they just look delicious?? I can't wait. My mouth is watering for our Easter Sunday feast!

But we still have the most important last days of Lent to go through first. I'm just getting excited......

God bless you all!

Easter TLM at St. Elizabeth of Hungary

For readers who may be interested, the Traditional Latin Mass will be celebrated as usual at 1:30 pm at Saint Elizabeth of Hungary Church on Easter Sunday, April 4. This Mass was inadvertently left off the schedule of Masses for Easter in the Saint Elizabeth's Sunday bulletin.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Spring Training

I grew up in a baseball family. The youngest of four siblings and the only girl, my childhood/teen spring and summer days were spent at the ballpark watching my brothers play and my dad manage Little League ball. I was bound to either love or hate the sport.

My dad (RIP) was a great Little League manager. He won far more games and seasons in his lifetime than he lost, and even took his 1978 All-Star Team to a state championship. What a year that was. The memories are still so clear in my mind of the team's winning ways, rooting them on, enjoying the pizza parties afterward. I still keep in touch with a couple of the players; in fact, the catcher and the slugger from that team helped bear my dad to his final resting place last September.

My dad was undoubtedly the biggest Red Sox fan there ever was. He fell in love with the team as a 12-year old boy in 1946 when Ted Williams was in his prime, and he followed them the rest of his life, whether they had a winning or losing season. Dad was not a boisterous fan; no, when Dad watched a game he would sit way back in his chair, hands resting, folded almost up on his chest, taking in every pitch and play. He didn't cheer loudly, but if the manager made a decision he disagreed with, well, he'd voice his opinion on that!

In 2000, Dad had the great privilege of going to Fenway Park in Boston to see the Red Sox play, courtesy of a very good friend of his. It was certainly the trip of a lifetime for him. Then in 2004, Dad finally got to celebrate Boston winning the World Series. Unfortunately it was at the expense of St. Louis! But Cardinals fan that I am, I couldn't help being thrilled for Dad. And to this day, I am a Red Sox fan too, for Dad's sake.

One thing my dad wished he could do was go watch his team play in Spring Training. He never got to do that. But this Spring, my dear husband is taking me and the boys to Jupiter, FL, to watch the Cards in Spring Training. I think I'm almost as excited as my dad would have been! We'll see three games, all of them in seats close enough to catch a foul-ball or two. It should be a wonderful trip with yet more baseball memories to talk about in years to come. Dad would be so happy for us.

I was bound to love or hate baseball. Well, I love it. I love that I live in a baseball town and that I can listen to Mike Shannon call the Cardinals games on the radio almost everyday from April through (hopefully!) October. And I love my dad for giving me baseball. Thanks Dad, this Spring Training is for you!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

International Society of Scholastics

I very recently came across a website for the International Society of Scholastics, a group that offers online education courses, many of which look very interesting. In perusing their site I took particular note of the fact that Monsignor Michael Schmitz, Vicar General of the Institute of Christ the King, serves on their Board of Advisors.

Today I am going to check out their 'crash course' entitled "What is Education? A Guide for Homeschool Parents", a brief description of which follows:

"This Crash Course is intended for homeschooling families, but is valuable for anyone in the educational field. We’ll discuss the nature of teaching and education, paying close attention to how the human mind develops from sense knowledge to intellectual knowledge. We’ll talk about reasoning and natural discovery; the artistic cooperation of a parent in the child’s continuing perfection; the basic disciplines and the order for learning them based on the intellect’s natural development process; the trivium and quadrivium; ‘great books’ education; the metaphysical goal of natural knowledge and its ordering toward Theology; the moral effects of a sound education."

A schedule of upcoming Saturday Crash Course offerings is listed here.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Lenten Music

One of the staples of our school at home is to have classical music playing throughout the school day. The boys enjoy having music in the school room, and they even have a couple of favorite composers and pieces.

With Lent upon us, I recently downloaded some works of Palestrina, specifically, Palestrina: Lamentations and
Allegri: Miserere; Palestrina: Missa Papae Marcelli. Both collections are absolutely beautiful and befit the present season perfectly. On first hearing it my eldest son asked me if it was the choir at St. Francis deSales Oratory singing! Well, no, I told him, but the deSales choir does sound a lot like this recording. (How blessed we are at the Oratory to have such heavenly choral music, under the direction of Mr. Nick Botkins, accompanying the Liturgy!)

If you are looking for music to uplift you heart and accompany your Lenten days and meditations, Palestrina is an excellent choice.

God bless you!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

An Extraordinary Sunday

HSMom is taking a break, so HSDad gets permission to feature a post!

Sunday, 1:30pm. And so it was that on the first Sunday in Lent we found ourselves, along with another 120 or so faithful, assisting Father Lockwood at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass in the Extraordinary form at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Parish - the first time the ancient Liturgy has been celebrated there on a Sunday in more than forty years.

Forty. The number forty rings in our hearts, a number found in the Holy Bible denoting a time of transition, but especially this first Sunday in Lent. From today's Gospel of Matthew we read of Jesus fasting for forty days and nights in the desert: His temptation, His strengthening, His example for us to persevere.

How rich this Liturgy, rediscovered time and again in the hearts of the faithful where it is offered. How blessed we Catholics are to have this treasure, as we praise God in gratitude giving him thanks for working through shepherds of His Church to once again provide and allow this sacred Rite to be freely offered where it is requested.

Our two boys were among the four candle bearers and ten or so boys and young men assisting Father at the Altar. The young men instructing the boys of the seriousness of this duty, teaching them by example and instruction, the good practice of serving.

Thank you Father Lockwood and thank you, Your Excellency Archbishop Carlson, for providing Saint Elizabeth of Hungary Parish this eternal jewel.

Litany of Humility

Rafael Cardinal Merry del Val (1865-1930),
Secretary of State for Pope Saint Pius X

O Jesus! meek and humble of heart, Hear me.
From the desire of being esteemed,

Deliver me, Jesus.

From the desire of being loved...
From the desire of being extolled ...
From the desire of being honored ...
From the desire of being praised ...
From the desire of being preferred to others...
From the desire of being consulted ...
From the desire of being approved ...
From the fear of being humiliated ...
From the fear of being despised...
From the fear of suffering rebukes ...
From the fear of being calumniated ...
From the fear of being forgotten ...
From the fear of being ridiculed ...
From the fear of being wronged ...
From the fear of being suspected ...

That others may be loved more than I,
Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.

That others may be esteemed more than I ...
That, in the opinion of the world,
others may increase and I may decrease ...
That others may be chosen and I set aside ...
That others may be praised and I unnoticed ...
That others may be preferred to me in everything...
That others may become holier than I,
provided that I may become as holy as I should…

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Hearts, Mr. Collins!

On this Saint Valentine's Day (and Quinquagesima) Sunday cards and flowers, chocolates, hugs and kisses have been shared in abundance. Our family has spent the morning playing, appropriately, Hearts. It's a fun card game, the basics of which are easily understood by the boys, while the adults can strategize to improve their scores. Still, my one gallant effort to 'shoot the moon' was foiled by my 8 year old, so we were all on a pretty level playing field! And more than once we quoted Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice (in our best British accents, of course!) when the suit changed to hearts.

We have a fresh blanket of snow on the ground, but it has not been falling all day as was predicted. We will head out to the 3:00 pm Mass this afternoon and it would appear, at least right now, that we won't have any trouble on the roads.

Happy Saint Valentine's Day to all my dear readers!

Saint Valentine, Pray for Us!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Happy Birthday, Honey!!

Yes, it's a big one.... today is my dear husband's 50th birthday!!

We began celebrating two days ago when we had his favorite dinner: a prime rib roast, cooked medium rare, mashed potatoes, brussels sprouts and salad, followed by his favorite dessert, Chocolate Chip Cookie Cheesecake, pictured above (find the recipe here).

The boys made 'Happy 50th' signs and hung them about the house, and we have the usual birthday streamers, balloons and banner that we hang whenever it is someone's special day. It is festive, indeed! And this evening the boys and I will take Dad out for dinner.

Where does time go?! We've been married for almost 11 years. Ten years ago on his 40th birthday, my husband was too busy with his 8-day old firstborn to think about turning 40. It seems like we blink and 10 years pass by. But without a doubt it has been the best 10 years of our lives. God has blessed us richly and in too many ways to count in this space.

And so, as I raised my glass to my hubby at his birthday dinner on Sunday, I raise it again here: Happy Birthday, Honey... Here's to another 50 years!!

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

The Joys of Homeschooling

Quote of the Day, courtesy of my 8 year old son, today during a drill of the states and capitals: "I put new batteries in my thinking cap, but it's still not working!"

I l
ove it when I hear or see my kids say or do something of note during the day, be it funny, clever, surprising, or even annoying. It makes me realize how very blessed I am to have them here all day where the things they say and do, good and bad, fall on the ears of one that loves them more than the best, most well-meaning teacher ever could.

If they are funny or smart, cute or clever, it's a moment to write down on Facebook where Grandma, 2000+ miles away, can appreciate the moment like only Grandma can, or I can text it to my husband and brighten his workday a bit. At the same time, if it's an annoying or naughty moment, well, I'm here for that too. I can deal with it immediately and directly and it won't get swept under the rug and forgotten, or the behavior perpetuated by the lack of due consequence that only Mom or Dad should mete out. Oh the moments I would miss if we didn't homeschool!

Today's funny little quote gives me pause to realize that not the least of my reasons for loving to homeschool is simply being able to be here with and for them, daily. In the midst of the hard work that educating our boys at home is, I realize how blessed we are with the freedom and ability to do so.

Monday, January 18, 2010

New Blog Recommendation!

Here's a brand-new blog I would like to recommend: Daily Chocolate Bar. Its author is a bright, enthusiastic young woman of 20 who, after graduating from homeschool, went on to Western Culinary Institute in Portland, Oregon, where she graduated with honors. Oh, and she just happens to be my niece!

In her blog she'll give us a taste of what she's doing in her kitchen, whether at home or work, and she'll serve it up with engaging style. Check it out!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

An Epiphany Gift!

It was a dark and cold evening with the threat of snow in the air as we entered the church. We were expecting the Novus Ordo in Latin on this Feast of the Epiphany, but it was apparent as Mass began that this was a low Traditional Latin Mass. There were only a handful of faithful, perhaps 3-4 families, assisting at the Mass.

As Father Lockwood began the prayers at the Altar, his voice, alternating with two young altarboys, was barely audible. All was quiet and still, the lighting was dim but for the Altar; I can imagine it was not unlike the evening the three kings arrived at the stable to adore and present their gifts to the Newborn King.

It was a beautiful Mass, as the TLM always is. But what made it a special gift on this Feast of the Epiphany, was the fact that it was the first Traditional Latin Mass celebrated at St. Elizabeth of Hungary Church in over 40 years! How blessed we were to be there ... we pray it is only the first of many to come!

* * *

St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Pray for Us!