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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

This is dedicated... to the friend who blocked me..

To my friend who has blocked my family...

Posting solid information on my own Facebook wall backed up with legit, solid links, photographic evidence from a reputable source we all believe in, and posted IN LOVE and NOT judgement, is no reason to be angry and rant about me, personally, in a public forum.  I'm sorry you disliked my post.  It was NOT directed at you.  I shared information out of love. Not judgement . I left out my own personal opinions... I called no one by name.  I posted links videos and some photos from some reputable sources.  I posted this because it is important to get this information out.  Because I love and care about family and friends.


 Without a single reply to me, either to my post, or even privately, I was hung out to dry by you and your friends, on your page... I was even called names.  And I watched in silent horror and sadness as you were encouraged in your anger by your friends, who only know your side.  I stayed silent. But I was heartbroken.


I remained silent also back during the election, when you blocked my 23 yr old daughter, and her husband, (who had nothing to do with it), because you couldn't just agree to disagree politically with someone half your age.  You blocked my child.  Over politics.  I stayed silent.  You did the same thing on your wall that time too.  About my child.  I said nothing.  And believe me, it wasn't easy.


That hurt me DEEPLY.  But I stayed out of it.  Four months later I messaged you privately, trying to reach out. I was tired of the silence and the hurt.  Hoping bygones could be bygones.  I missed you.  I wanted to tell you we loved and missed you.  That Pride did NOT need to win one single day more.  Anything said or done (regardless of who said what was irrelevant) was in the past.  That we loved you like FAMILY... You said you'd reply.  "When you had time".  After a month, you still had not replied.  Though you'd been online many, many times. Including when my daughter and her husband vacationed out West, taking selfies as they enjoyed their first vacation together as man and wife.... you AGAIN made unkind comments... implying narcissism.  And again I said nothing.  And my letter to you, that I wrote you, in love, willing to put aside all the pain and hurt feelings, in my willingness to let all that go.. was deleted by you.  And now I'm blocked too, right along with my adult daughter and her husband.


Facts:  The Italian Saint, Padre Pio, is NOT "Sedevacantist".  Nor did he "spout hogwash".  I'm shocked, frankly, that you'd say that.  Yes.  He's the one who told about the 3 days of darkness.  I tend to believe a holy priest who had the ability read souls, and had the gift of the stigmata.  http://www.ewtn.com/v/experts/showmessage.asp?number=326829


Sacramentals are gifts given to us. Priests use holy water, chrism oil, and so on in holy mass.  It's common for Catholics to have statutes and sacramentals in our homes... our Domestic Church.  They are not "just there to make you look holier than you really are".   https://www.catholicsacramentals.org

 As far as statues... YOU have statues!!  In your house!!  I've seen them.  I think they're beautiful.

Veiling:  whether you do or don't is none of my business.  It's between each of us, individually, and God.  It does not make you holier.  Or less holy.  We are all sinners regardless.  The sisters are veiled.  Half the ladies at mass veil.


Asking/demanding answers:   unless you're my kid, that's NEVER happened.  I don't feel I should have to explain myself to others, and nor should they have to explain themselves to me.  I'm NOT a judge.  I'm not God.  I'm not a priest.


You and I have had some wonderful conversations over the years.  We shared views, even ones when we didn't agree.  But we loved each other enough, to agree to disagree.  Like adults.  I have NEVER called you names or run you down publicly.  But now you've stated that I've "harassed you for years"??!!  Seriously??!!


I've never doubted your faith.  I've never in my life even insinuated that you were not Catholic.


Cooking:  I don't buy your food.  I don't CARE what you cook... or why, or how.  Seriously.  I have my own menu for my own family... that's just silly.


You don't have to answer to anyone other than God, your priest, and your husband.  And same for the rest of us.  I have my own family to worry about. What you do is YOUR business.  Please don't accuse me of otherwise.


You want me to "tend my own garden".  I WAS.  I posted something on MY wall.  Not directed at you.  You know, if you didn't like it, you could have ignored it, or talked to me privately.  What I posted, was post in love, not judgement, I kept my own opinion out of it.  I was sharing important, information regarding spiritual warfare.  Because I care more about the souls of my family and friends than I do my popularity... or lack thereof.   If you agreed or not was your choice.  I knew not everyone would like it.  But the name calling was going too far.  I've read PLENTY on social media that has annoyed/angered me.  But I ignored it.  We all have a right to our opinions.  And we have freedom of speech.  But I don't run my mouth and bash about in on a public forum.  Oh sure, I get mad.  But I CHOOSE to ignore it and move on.  However when I'm being called names... and the topic of discussion... I have trouble ignoring that. BUT I didn't fight with you about it.  I didn't slam you back on my wall.  I just tried to ignore the ugliness.


I'm not angry.  I'm sad.  And I'm hurt.  But again, this isn't about me.  I hope one day you can get past your anger.  I'll be here waiting.  I meant what I said in my letter 2 months ago.  Pride won again.  Let bygones be bygones.  We can't keep letting pride win.  The past is in the past.  Dust in the wind.  Friendship is bigger than ego.


I pray one day this is something we will laugh over.  And I'm posting this here, since you've blocked me I have no other way to contact you.


Love you!!

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Fasting Bread Recipes (not just for Lent!)

FASTING BREAD RECIPE

Taken from Sr. Emmanuels' book, "Healing and Liberation Through Fasting". This bread is very hearty and really sustains one who chooses to fast on bread and water.

3 cups white flour
4 cups wheat flour
1 pkg dry yeast
1/2 cup of lukewarm water
2 cups of very hot water
1 beaten egg
1 Tablespoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Sugar or Honey
2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
1 teaspoon of butter
1 cup Raisins (or fresh apple peeled and cut)
1 cup Almonds or Walnuts
1 cup Plain Oats
In a medium sized bowl, dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup lukewarm water. Cover with a plate and wait a few minutes until bubbly. In a large bowl, combine the flours. Make a well in the flour and add the yeast mixture. Mix a bit.
Reusing the now empty medium bowl, combine Salt, Sugar, Butter, Oil, Raisins, Nuts, 1 beaten egg, and the two cups of very hot water. Pour this over the yeast mixture. Mix/knead the dough, adding flour and or water as needed.
Knead the dough until it comes clean from the bowl. Cover with a plate or towel and let it rise ten minutes. (I often skip this step and the bread still tastes fine) Knead it again until it has spring to it. Place in well greased bowl and cover, letting it rise until doubled in size, 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on room temp.
Form into desired shapes. This will make two large or three medium loaves.
Place in greased pan. Brush the top with remaining egg (if you did not use it in recipe) and sprinkle with sesame seeds, oats or poppy seeds, if desired.
Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes, until done and golden brown.

****************

ANA's FASTING BREAD RECIPE

I know there are many recipes for bread but I thought I would share this one with you because it's the same type of bread my family bakes from the area of Medjugorje and the surrounding villages in Hercegovina and Croatia. This is the closest thing I have found to their bread using our regular flour.
Their bread is usually round and slightly flat. They bake their bread on a hot brick with coals placed on top of an iron lid called an "ispod Sac". When the bread is done, they brush the left over coals off the lid and lift it up with either a wire that hangs on the wall, or if they're real careful with a pot holder. But usually, since the lid is really heavy, it is lifted off with a pully kind of thing.
I've got pictures of this somewhere and it's kind of neat to see. The bread is more coarse then regular white bread and is dense with a slightly heavier crust.
So, here's the recipe without the big heavy lid and the hot brick:

1 Pkg Dry Yeast
1 1/2 Cups Warmed Milk
3 Tablespoons Softened Butter
1 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 Tablespoon Sugar
3 Cups All Purpose Flour. (Their flour over there is a little different).
Put Yeast into the warm milk and butter in large mixing bowl, let this disolve for 1 minute. (Not hot milk or you'll kill the yeast).
Add salt, sugar flour and beat or mix for about 1 minute.
Pour batter into greased loaf pan. slash the top, cover and let rise for about 35 minutes.
Bake at 375 for about 45 minutes.
Take out of pan and let cool.
This bread is excellent toasted. It's also great to make it the day before, or early in the morning on fast days.

The rest copied "as is" from website, on my phone. I apologise now for how wonky it's bound to look!



Lenten Fasting Bread Recipe from Sr Emmanuel

Medjugorje Fasting Bread Recipe
3 cups white flour
4 cups wheat flour
1 pkg. dry yeast or three tablespoons of active yeast
½ cup of lukewarm water
2 cups of very hot water
1 beaten egg
1 Tablespoon of Salt
2 Tablespoons of Sugar
2 Tablespoons of Olive Oil
1 teaspoon of butter
1 cup of Raisins (or fresh apple cut up into small pieces)7
1 cup of Almonds or walnuts
1 cup of Plain Oats
Blend flour in a large bowl.  Make a well in the flour.  After yeast dissolves in ½ cup lukewarm water (5-10 minutes), add to flour.  Mix flour over yeast mixture making soft balls.  Add salt, sugar butter, oil, raisins (or apple) and nuts, ½ beaten egg to 2 cups of hot water.  Pour over yeast.  (Continually add flour and water as needed) Knead the dough until it comes clean from the bowl.  Let it rise 10 minutes covered.  Knead again until it is has spring to it.  Place in well greased bowl preferable 70-80 degrees F until it is double in bulk.  Form into desired shapes.  Brush the top with remaining egg and sesame seeds, oats, or poppy seeds, if desired.  Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes, until done and golden brown.  (Use the “wet knife” test) Makes 2 large or 3 medium loaves. 
Chiapati
Ingredients:
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
3/4 cup hot water or as needed
Directions:
1.     In a large bowl, stir together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour and salt. Use a wooden spoon to stir in the olive oil and enough water to make a soft dough that is elastic but not sticky. Knead the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is smooth. Divide into 10 parts, or less if you want bigger breads. Roll each piece into a ball. Let rest for a few minutes.
2.     Heat a skillet over medium heat until hot, and grease lightly. On a lightly floured surface, use a floured rolling pin to roll out the balls of dough until very thin like a tortilla. When the pan starts smoking, put a chapati on it. Cook until the underside has brown spots, about 30 seconds, then flip and cook on the other side. Continue with remaining dough.
Naan
“A yeast raised East Indian flat bread with a delicious chewy texture.”
Ingredients:
2 tablespoons warm water (110 degrees F
/45 degrees C)
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm milk
1/4 cup plain yogurt, room temperature
4 tablespoons melted butter
3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon poppy seeds
Directions:
1.     Put warm water in a small bowl, add sugar and yeast and stir until dissolved. Set     aside for 5-10 minutes or until it foams.
2.     Blend in the warm milk, yogurt and melted margarine. In a large bowl, mix flour,     salt, baking powder and poppy seeds. Pour in the yeast/milk mixture all at once     and work it into the flour, using your hands. Continue mixing, adding flour or     water as needed, until the mixture leaves the sides of the bowl.
3.     Knead for 6 to 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. Place in a lightly oiled bowl     and turn to coat. Cover with a damp cloth and let stand in a warm place to rise for     about 4 hours or until doubled in volume.
4.     Preheat oven to 550 degrees F (285 degrees C) or your oven’s highest setting and     set a rack in the lower third of the oven. Place a large pizza pan or iron griddle on     the rack and preheat. Also preheat the broiler.
5.     Punch the dough down and knead briefly. Divide into six pieces and shape them     into balls. Place them on an oiled plate and cover with lightly oiled plastic wrap.     Let balls rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Roll out and stretch each ball until it is about     10 inches long and 5 inches wide. Remove the pizza pan from the oven, brush     with oil and place one of pieces of bread on it.
6.     Bake at 550 degrees F (285 degrees C) for about 4 to 5 minutes until bread is     puffed and has brown spots, then transfer to a wire rack, returning pizza pan to     oven to keep hot. Place bread under broiler until ‘charcoal’ dots appear on the     surface. Wrap finished bread in a towel while baking the remaining loaves. (If     your pizza pan is big enough, try baking two loaves at the time.)
Indian Naan II (Exotic Ingredients)
Ingredients:
2/3 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
1 teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon white sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup ghee
2 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 teaspoons kalonji (onion seed)
Directions:
1.     Whisk the warm water with the yeast and sugar until the yeast is dissolved. Cover     and let stand in a warm place for 10 minutes.
2.     Sift flour and salt three times into a large bowl add the yeast mixture, half of the     ghee and all the yogurt. Mix into a soft dough then knead on a floured surface for     about 5 minutes or until dough is smooth and elastic. Place the dough in a large     greased bowl, cover and let stand in a warm place for 1 1/2 hours or until the     dough is doubled in size .
3.     Punch down dough then knead for 5 minutes. Divide dough into 6 pieces. Roll     each piece out into 8 inch round naans.
4.     Cover an oven tray with foil and grease the foil. Brush the naan with a little of the     remaining ghee and sprinkle with some of the kalonji. Cook naan one at a time     under a very hot grill for about 2 minutes on each side or until puffed and just     browned.
Easy St. Phanourios Bread
Fasting (with oil)
Preheat oven to 350.
1. 1 cup sugar
2. 1 cup oil
3. 2 cups orange juice
4. 3/4 cup raisins
5. 3/4 cup chopped walnuts
6. 1 tsp. baking soda
7. 4 cups flour
Mix oil and sugar, and beat until it’s a creamy yellow. This may take a long time.
Put the baking soda IN the orange juice, and stir until dissolved. [NB: this can be spectacularly dramatic if you use a two cup measuring cup with two cups of o.j. in it. (Please don’t ask how I found out.) It might be easier to hold a two cup measuring cup OVER the bowl full of oil and sugar and pour in *one* cup of o.j., mix in 1/2 tsp. baking soda, watch the fireworks, pour it into the bowl, and again mix *one* cup of o.j. with 1/2 tsp. baking soda, stir and pour again. If you don’t dissolve the baking soda completely, you get lumps of it in the cake. So, stir well.]
Add the flour, then the raisins and nuts.
Pour the batter into an ungreased 9″x13″ pan and bake at 350 degrees F. for 45 minutes (or until a clean toothpick dipped in the cake emerges clean.)
I use a bundt pan instead of one 9″ x 13″, and my kids prefer this with chocolate chips in the place of the raisins and nuts. It doesn’t really need a frosting, but if you wanted to drizzle a stiff glaze made out of, say, powdered sugar and lemon juice and a little water over it, that would be okay, too.
If you wanted to put spices in the batter, I’d go with a tiny amount (1/4 tsp. or less) of ground cloves.
EZEKIEL FASTING BREAD
If you want to order the grains and beans to grind into flour yourself, click here.
Combine the following whole grains:
* 2-1/2 cups hard red wheat
* 1-1/2 cups spelt or rye (Biblically spelt was used, Ezekiel 4:9)
* 1/2 cup barley (hulled barley)
* 1/4 cup millet
* 1/4 cup lentils (green preferred)
* 2 Tbs. great northern beans
* 2 Tbs. red kidney beans
* 2 Tbs. pinto beans
Stir the above ingredients very well.  Grind in flour mill.
(NOTE: all of these grains and beans can be ground in the GrainMaster Whisper
Mill with no problems).
Measure into large bowl or DLX:
* 4 cups lukewarm water
* 1 cup honey
* 1/2 cup oil
Add to liquids:
freshly milled flour from the above mixture of grains
* 2 tsp. salt
* 2 Tbs. yeast
Stir or knead until well kneaded about 10 minutes. This is a batter type bread and will not form a smooth ball.
Pour dough into greased pans. You may use 2 large loaf pans (10x5x3) or 3 med. loaf pans or 2-9×13 brownie pans. Let rise in a warm place for one hour or until the dough is almost to the top of the pan. If it rises too much it will over flow the pan while baking. Bake at 350o for 45-50 minutes for loaf pans and 35-40 minutes for brownie pans.
*For fasting divide bread into 8 equal parts weighing 1/2 pound each. Eat a 1/2 pound cake and drink a quart of water every day. For fasting I do not alter the recipe.
Beckers Bread and Roll recipe
This is a very sweet, moist, cake-like bread. For a more traditional bread texture I have used this combination of grains in The Beckers Bread and Roll recipe. Replacing the 7 cups of flour with the 9 cups of flour from the milled grains in this recipe. You may also add fruits and nuts or use the flour made from this mixture in other favorite recipes. This healthy combination of grains and beans is worth experimenting with. Combining grains and beans makes a complete protein.
Ingredients Convert Measures
* 1/2 c. rolled oats
* 3/4 c. boiling water
* 5 tbsp. butter
* 3 teaspoon salt
* 1/2 c. honey
* 3 c. 7 grain mix
* 3 tbsp. yeast
* 1/3 c. dry lowfat milk
* 2 c. hot water
* 1 c. gluten flour
* 3 to 4 c. white flour
Directions
1. You may grind 7 grain in a blender or possibly use as is. In small bowl, pour boiling water over oats. Add in butter, salt and honey. In large bowl, put 2 c. 7 grain mix, 1 c. gluten flour, 3 Tbsp. yeast and dry lowfat milk. Mix and add in oat mix plus 2 c. hot water. Add in remaining 1 c. 7 grain and mix. Add in sufficient white flour till dough loses stickiness. Knead 8 to 10 min. Place in greased bowl to rise. Divide into 2 loaves. Let rise. Bake at 375 degrees for 50 min. Makes 2 loaves

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Catching Up

It's been a long time since I came on here, and bared my soul.  It's a vulnerable thing, you know?  Who sees?  Who reads?  Are they judging me?  Or DO they find the comradery of a kindred spirit?  Can they, or do they even relate?

So.  I'll be 50 this year.  The crows are circling more frequently (small joke directed at my previous post), to the point I can hear the wings as they soar overhead.  Ever so softly.

I've entered a new phase of my life.  My eldest daughter was married May 28, 2016.   In our home parish.  They were engaged over a year.  We gave her a beautiful wedding.  She and Michael married, and promptly moved away from us.  To another city.  Nearly 3 hours away.  Close enough to visit.  But not 2 blocks away, as I would have preferred.  I miss her.  I am still in tears when I think of her.  At nearly 24, she's still my baby.

After only 5 months of marriage, they've bought a pretty brick home on an acre of land.  She's happy.  Her husband is a decent, sweetheart of a guy who loves her dearly.   We are pleased with her choice, thank you God.  And I'm proud to say, she is 10 weeks pregnant.  I'm going to be a Granny!!!

Robyn, my younger daughter, is on her fourth year in Special Olympics.  We finally got the diagnosis for her... she's on the autism spectrum.  Which...  we pretty well knew.  But now it's official.  Legally blind.  Autism.  And puberty.  Jesus help me.  There is no spinning vortex of evil quite like the fun filled combination of autism and puberty!!!

I will continue this later.  Hubby is breathing all over me to know what I'm writing.  And doggies demanding attention.  I have chores to do, a Mardi Gras cake to pick up, and chicken wings to buy, clean, and prepare.  Our last blowout before Lent.

Happy Saturday!!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Riding Wild Horses




Disclaimer:  I probably should not drink and blog, while depressed.  Ah well, it is what it is.   You have been warned....


Lately has brought back a flood of memories of my very dear friend Stephanie..  who left this world too soon.  Which, though painful and depressing as hell..   all this emotion is actually quite welcome since I as a result I was given some old pictures of her.  God.. what a precious gift.  Pics from 1992.. the year I started at the answering service and I was put at the computer next to her.. and there she was sitting.. in her U2 concert shirt.. and then began the friendship.  

I have already cried my eyes out..  now I am immersing myself in the wonders of U2.   Our favourite band in the world.  My first U2 concert was with her.   November 1997.  6th row on the floor in front of the stage.  Standing on top of metal folding chairs, (the chairs were chained together) AND it was raining.  :)  It was awesome!!!

I remember when she first passed away in 2005.. I couldn't listen to U2 for about two years.  Even now, ten years later, there are still songs I can't listen to without weeping.

Stephanie and I had a song.  Okay well actually we had two of them.  The other one was Sinead O'Connor's "Nothing Compares 2 U".  (that's a whole 'nother story)...  But.. "Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses" was "our" main song.

Why was this our song?  She said it always made her think of me.   I told her "things" I know that I "wasn't supposed to".   1992-93 was a major pivotal time of my life.. I was scared, and "didn't know what I wanted".  She was my trusted confidant.  I held nothing back.  She was a good listener, and she never judged.  I was "dangerous, because I was honest".  I trusted too easily..  She was forever trying to lovingly toughen me up.  God love her.

I was pregnant.  Not under good circumstances.  I was that "accident waiting to happen."  I always joke she delivered my baby.  Best ever Aunt who wasn't really an aunt. :)

I would have "lied, if she'd asked me to".  (She loved me enough she would never do that)  But at that age, we were young enough and snotty and spirited enough.. you never knew with us..

Steph's been gone almost ten years.   This November 18th..  

I go to were she's buried... still the grave is unmarked..  so I mark it myself with things I bring her.   

So now it's me driving there, to the cemetery.. "in the dirty rain... to the place where the wind calls her name."  

"Under the trees"  ironically next to a river...  it's actually beautiful where she was put to rest.  I hear her in the wind in the trees.  I feel her in the breeze.  She's everywhere, but she meets me there.  💜  She knows.. she's on the other side of that veil.  Almost like on the other side of a mirror.. I can't see her.. but I know she is there.  I know she watches out for me still.  Still being my friend.  

"Hallelujah...Heavens door..."

Dear God, that "door" she "opened"... "I just can't close".... even after ten years... because I want her back.  
Yes I am selfish.  And I. Don't. Care.  
Losing someone is NOT something you "get over".  It's not a cold.

Our "gypsy hearts"...   and I can't help but "look back".  Depression.. 

 "the deeper I spin.."

Who's going to take the place of her?  No one.  No one ever can.  She is still with me.  I feel her.


"You're dangerous 'cause you're honest
You're dangerous, you don't know what you want
Well you left my heart empty as a vacant lot
For any spirit to haunt

Hey hey sha la la
Hey hey

You're an accident waiting to happen
You're a piece of glass left there on the beach
Well you tell me things I know you're not supposed to
Then you leave me just out of reach

Hey hey sha la la
Hey hey sha la la

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna drown in your blue sea
Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna fall at the foot of thee

Well you stole it 'cause I needed the cash
And you killed it 'cause I wanted revenge
Well you lied to me 'cause I asked you to
Baby, can we still be friends

Hey hey sha la la
Hey hey sha la la

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna drown in your blue sea
Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna fall at the foot of thee

Oh, the deeper I spin
Oh, the hunter will sin for your ivory skin
Took a drive in the dirty rain
To a place where the wind calls your name
Under the trees the river laughing at you and me
Hallelujah, heavens white rose
The doors you open
I just can't close

Don't turn around, don't turn around again
Don't turn around, your gypsy heart
Don't turn around, don't turn around again
Don't turn around, and don't look back
Come on now love, don't you look back

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna drown in your blue sea
Who's gonna taste your salt water kisses
Who's gonna take the place of me

Who's gonna ride your wild horses
Who's gonna tame the heart of thee"

~Bono, U2

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Waiting For The Crows



I remember years ago I was watching an episode of 'Dharma & Greg'.   Abby's cycle had stopped, and, given her age, (40's presumably), she mistakenly thought she'd started menopause.  "I'm a crone!", she told Dharma as they happily hugged.  

My Southern ears didn't hear "crone".  I heard crow

Okay so in my mind,  crows make me think sunflowers.... and that makes me think of late summer...  leading into Autumn...  and a woman ending the summer of her life ..... and entering the Autumn....   Okay... don't judge me...  this made sense in my head.

So,  given I am but a short time before qualifying for AARP, (gulp), I can say with complete confidence that my baby-makin' days are over.  That's fine.  Yes I still have days I weep for the children I didn't get ..... (I dearly, DEARLY adore my two darling girls,  but yes I really would have preferred a whole houseful.) ...... But I digress.  I have grandbabies (hopefully one day) to look forward to... .....not that I am in any rush...  but one day I want to be a spoilin', cookie-bakin' grandma.  Yep.  Sounds good to me.  

My youngest child will be 15 this year.  I am on the verge of entering a new phase of my life...  gone is the maiden...   the child-bearing years ending....   please, God.......please let this be soon, I am tired of the Full Moon Rising.. .(if you get my meaning)...   and I'm ready for the next phase of my life to start.   

One night under a beautiful sky... I'm standing out in the yard, ......arms reaching Heavenward,....... looking longing into the Universe...  suddenly my reverie is interrupted by my eldest.  
"Momma, what are you doing?"
Me: (dreamily)  "Waiting for the crows to start circling.".

She looks at me..... expressionless...... 
and she turns and walks back into the house without a word.

'Moms being weird again.'

Later that evening I'm online...  reading about moon-times, herbal teas, and so forth...  when I see ......
it's NOT the 'crow' phase. 

  It's CRONE.

Well.  Don't I just feel like a duck.  

Fine.  Whatever.  I mispronounce things all the time.  Partially because my Southern tongue can't say non Southern words or expressions very well...  but it's mostly because I'm a hayseed.  Yeah, I admit it.  Anyway.

The Crone phase sounds lovely.  The Crone is the wise older woman of the tribe.  She's been there.  She's like the 'Wise Old Rafiki' like on the Lion King.   But.. without being a monkey.  :)   

I'm ready.  I know... in God's time... not mine.   

But if you see any crows..  point 'em in my direction.  :)

Just in case.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Spiritual Warfare? Things That Go Bump... Anytime...

I admit I am reluctant to post this entry.  It's been a while, and this will be nothing like previous entries.  In a nutshell, I believe that there is something/someone in our home.  No. I'm not crazy.  I never bring this up though...  I don't appreciate being made to feel crazy when I know in my heart that there is something there... and it's most certainly not my imagination.  It's been witnessed by others as well.

We bought our home and moved in on Memorial day weekend 1997.  The home was built in the mid 70s, in a subdivision.  Ranch style... no upstairs.. no basement...  good sized fenced in yard.  The previous owners had lived here for 8 years before selling the house to us.
Any owners prior to them I am unaware of, but I know others did own it before them.

Many years ago, this was all woods and farmland.  There was a nearby plantation, and this may or may not have been part of the outlying property.  We are also one mile North of a main train line...  and there is Civil War history here near us.  Camp Milton was about five miles away, and I've heard that just a half mile away was another smaller Civil War camp.
As far as the previous owners...    they were Indonesian.  I don't know what their religion was... but I recall seeing a shrine in the den (converted from a single car garage) with little elephants and tons of incense.  I remember being impressed by the amount of ash marks on the walls from all the incense that had been burned.   We met them at closing. They seemed nice.  Two sons.

Almost immediately after we moved in, I had the odd feeling of being watched.  One night, late, the television in the den came on by itself. Hubby was not home... he was working late.  My only child at the time, who was then a toddler, was asleep in her bed.  As I reached to turn the television off, the volume started turning up.  On its own.  Right in front of me. LOUD.  It was icy cold (fear?... because this is Florida and it was early summer)... and my heart was pounding.  I ran as fast as I could back to bed. I didn't sleep a wink the rest of the night.

Talking to my new neighbours, I learned that the previous owners had the grandfather living with them.  He passed away in that very den.  He was hard of hearing... but he liked tv and always turned it up loud so he could hear it.   When he passed, his family had him cremated.  And scattered his ashes all over the yard.   Something no one mentioned when we bought the house.  Probably not looked upon as a positive selling point.
*rolls eyes*

Almost 18 years later, we've gotten used to having someone else here.  He isn't hurting anything.  And somehow along the way we have had two others join in.  Why?  No idea. Maybe they were there all along but we just didn't know.   Who knows?  How do I know they're there?   We have had three different people... separate situations...  unaware of the other...  and don't know each other...  ask us about them.   They have even described them exactly the same.   I have never seen them.  I don't understand why some people have but most don't.  I cannot explain that.  But I know that there are three here.   The older grandfather who basically came with the house.  There is also a maybe 14 or 15 year old girl in old style dress...perhaps Civil war era... and a tall smiley man with long dark hair.   No clue who he is... or where he came from.  He has been around for years... and apparently likes me.  He watches me cook.   I am not sure how I feel about that.  Part of me is weirded out.  Part of me is curious.  It's very conflicting.

However.  Since there has never been a problem, and it's been, for the most part, uneventful, we have just accepted it and didn't worry about it.

Now things have changed.   Almost a week before Christmas, our brother in law passed away.  Around that time is when the knocking started.

I was sitting at the dining room table.  Youngest daughter was in her room.  Eldest daughter and hubby were both at work.  There was a distinct knock on the window pane in our front room next to the front door.  Literally, several knocks in succession...  like a friend would do.. except... everyone we know would either knock on the door or ring the doorbell.

I got up to peer through the window to see who knocked. Almost immediately there was another knock... same distinct succession of knocks...  directly behind me.  I felt the hair on the back of my neck stand up... and my heart was about to pound out of my chest.  I turned...  and it knocked again.. very deliberately...  on our home school bookshelf.  I nearly stroked out.  It dawned on me that I was being played with.  "Stop that.  You're not funny." I tell my unseen visitor.

The day after Christmas is when we discovered that we had a leak.  In the pipe behind the stove...  which backs up to a wall.. and on the other side is the home school bookshelf.   The knocks have continued every day.  Sometimes they're very loud.  We moved the bookshelf to a different wall...  it's still in the front room, but now is backed up to the wall which... on the other side...is the den.  The knocking is on that wall now, next to the bookshelf.   Even our dogs will sit quietly and stare in that direction.  No barking or growling... but they know that there is something there.

It's been about three weeks since the knocking started.  We are still waiting for the insurance company to decide what they will cover, but that pipe is "off" so no more leak.   The knocking sound cannot be pipes since (a) that pipe was dealt with, and (b), the wall that the knocking has moved to has no pipes in it, and (c), there are certainly no pipes in the window pane.

Once we get the repairs done and things looking normal again, I am going to call our priest and have our house blessed.  I am not sure what else to do.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

An Unexpected Visit



My close-as-a-sister friend Stephanie passed away almost nine years ago.  I miss her all the time.  I've had reminders.. dreams.. so forth pop up here and there a few times..  two very vivid dreams I am convinced were visitations.   One was basically to let me know she was okay.  The other was because I was in a state of distress over her being in an unmarked grave.  (don't EVEN get me started on her husband NOT putting a marker on her grave).   At any rate.   It's been a few years... and low and behold.. she just, in a way, popped in on me.   And I am in tears...   joyful, thankful tears.. and missing her.

My eldest daughter, who is 21, came up and hugged me.  We were standing there, arms around each other, and she pulled back and said, "Well, that was weird".   
Me:  "What?"  Listening as I walked back into the kitchen to check the dinner I was cooking.
Her:  "You know how sometimes you get a strange smell out of nowhere.. just like.. a quick whiff.. and it takes you back to a place or time?"
"Me: "Yes!!  Where did it take you?
Her:  *looks at me seriously*  "Back to Stephanie's wedding."


I consider.  She was only two months shy of turning seven at her wedding.  I was seven months pregnant with Robyn.   I look up on the counter at the crunchy snacks I just made.. and I laugh and say that "Well, it makes sense.   If Steph was here, she'd be sitting her butt up to this counter, eating these crunchy things I just made, and chattering excitedly about U2's upcoming album and tour."

Amy looks at me.  Moves her hands to indicate the earbuds she has on.  "Mom, I'm listening to their new album now."

Stephanie.

I walked into the den, where my hubby is watching a movie.  I told him what happened.  Him:  "That was Steph."   I'm glad he gets it.  Enough people think you're weird when you mention anything remotely like this.   To be honest I'm surprised I even blog about it.. but I have.. this is like, the third time.  I 'have' to share it though.  I do.  I can't NOT share it.  

So I am getting overwhelmed with emotions and I start crying.. and Amy looks wounded and is going, "I'm sorry Momma, I didn't mean to make you cry."  And goes to hug me.  And I'm hugging her back, and thanking her.  She didn't have to share that with me, but I am so profoundly grateful that she did.   Stephanie popped in to say hello, more or less.   As I'm hugging my daughter and crying, I blurt out, "She didn't forget me.  She still loves me.  My buddy still loves me."   Why would I come out with that?  I don't know.   But I DO know that my beloved friend is still around.  

What a precious gift.  I never saw it coming.  I am so thankful.   

Today, the Church celebrates Exaltation of the Holy Cross.  What does this have to do with this?  I don't know.  But mass was awesome today, confession was awesome, to say the least.  I knew in advance what I was going to say, then had this rush of emotion and things I didn't plan to say came out of nowhere and pouring out of me... which was painful and beautiful and freeing.. and now this..  no.. I just don't believe in coincidences any more.  I used to.  God knows the whole story and sees the big picture.  Me?  I just have to have faith. ♥  Here I am Lord.   Thy Holy will be done!

Stephanie:  This November 18th will be the 9th anniversary of your passing.  It was a Friday, at your moms house.   I have missed you so badly.. you know this.   Missing you, and praying for you.   Love you Heifer Girl.  My U2 buddy.  My sister in crime.  I can't wait to see you again one day.  ♥