Saturday, March 28, 2015

90 years young!

Spare a prayer for my sweet daddy?

Dad and Avila

His name is George and it's his birthday!

His wife, six kids and hundreds* of grandkids thank you.  : )

*I'm rushing out the door and don't have time to count. Trust me. There's a lot of them!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

This Semi-Eternal Lenten Reinvention

(#StreamTeam)  (#movies)  (#angst)  (#giftofhope)

 At the start of every month, I receive a prompt from Netflix suggesting a theme for my next post. These prompts are fun and full of suggestions, like "Celebrating Milestones" or "Creating your Own Destiny."

The theme for March was "Reinventing Yourself," and immediately I thought Lent.

*  * *

First, some suggestions and then my thoughts.  I haven't watched all the movies that they recommended but I can give a big thumb's up to some of them.

For your little kids, how about:

For your bigger kids, how about:

And for you:

I have watched (and love) all of the movies pictured in my graphic. Catching Fire, for example? I've watched it twice and (I'll admit it) would watch it again. Personally, I'm crazy about all the Hunger Games movies; they are well done, thought-provoking, and feature the brilliant talent of Jennifer Lawrence.  I could, quite frankly and possibly pathetically, be entertained watching Lawrence paint her nails. She is an amazing actress, and I could watch her and Bradley Cooper (another favorite) (#swoon) in Silver Linings Playbook again & again.

Note: Silver Linings Playbook has lots of language and can be crass. It also has real Catholic families struggling with mental illness and dysfunction, and for that reason (among others) I could totally relate.

On no less of a lighter note, October Baby is another family favorite. (Not for the littles, mind you, but for ages 12 and up.) Felicity and I watched it again last night and--as always--I cried throughout. It's a feel-good movie that also takes on abortion. It has some heavy themes but then again, so does life.

* * *

Now then.

Why the title of my post? 

I have cried more this Lent than I would have thought normal, even for me. These are not tears of depression or despair, however; rather, they come from my wanting more.

I want my life to be better than it is. I want my home and my family to be...better, yet I know (as always) this "being-better" stuff must start with me.

* * *

To that end, I'm thinking about taking more pictures.

(What do you think of my studio name? Be honest.)

Being (semi) professional means stepping outside my comfort zone, which is what I have to do when I take Senior portraits.

And yet, I'm always glad when all is said and done snapped. 

* * *

In truth, there are a dozen ways I'd like to reinvent myself. How about that "health and wellness" category, Margaret?  Well, Felicity and I are running a 5K in April: the Hot Chocolate Run in Minneapolis. This is a reinvention of the scariest kind because I am completely out of shape.

I'm just saying.

Freddy Mercury's Fat-Bottomed Girls have nothing on me.

* * *

Um...that wasn't very nice to say, was it?

Well, cue the tears that I mentioned above.  

I've been crying this Lent because I'm starting to get it. I am nowhere near who I want to be and yet, in His eyes? I am perfect. Being thin...accomplished...acclaimed...winning the race of the day (and it changes daily)...

Let's just say that sometimes I feel like a harried mama rat, scrabbling through a maze trying to get to the goal.

And the reason I call it a "semi-eternal" reinvention is that I know I won't stop the self-improvement stuff come Easter. I will continue to hope and try to be better until I drop off the face of this earth and pierce the veil to...what? To the the only goal that really matters.

To Him.

To eternity.

To forever love.


Monday, March 23, 2015

Drained to the Dregs

That's how I feel some days.

365 (Day 71)

But it's good! It's all good! I can honestly say that this Lent's going well.

(If by "well" I mean that I'm failing miserably. I'm failing miserably at doing penance because my penance is always food-related and I do NOT do well at food-related penance. "Hi, my name is Margaret and I'm addicted to food. Please tell me to stop using Lent as a 12-step program.)

Meanwhile, my love for Our Lord--my need for Him--is growing by leaps and bounds with every fall, and maybe that's the point of all this? I know it is. I have faith that it is. We hold out our hand and we look at its five fingers: ""

I need more than 40 days to get it but I won't--we won't--until we see the big picture.

Speaking of pictures...

365 (Day 78) (2)

I'm still taking lots. That kid in the photo holding his beloved St. Joseph? He cracks me up, and is infinitely patient with his momma's photo-taking.

Well, almost infinitely.

Yesterday at Mass I slid him a book during the homily. My husband's not crazy about kiddy diversions during Mass, so I try to keep the extracurricular reading to a minimum. Except yesterday, I forgot to take the St. Joseph picture book back, and was kneeling in prayer after communion when...

"I'm done, Mom!" he announced, quite loudly.

"Got any more for me?"

And this kid...

365 (Day 76)

My goodness. I'm old to be doing the mom-of-a-2-year-old thing but I am loving the sweet innocence. "Good morning!" I say, scooping him out of his crib. "How did you sleep?"

"In my bed," he says.

My goodness.


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