Friday, February 26, 2016

Beauty at Church

The top tier of icons are done and up
at my far away church!
It is lovely to see a place becoming so beautiful!

Thursday, February 25, 2016

The Icon of St. Anna

Thought the above video about the icon of St. Anna is one 
to remember and enjoy.
Mr. Husband and I enjoyed listening to 
Fr. Athanasy speak about this icon a few years ago.
May his memory be eternal!

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Beautiful Colours for a Cozy Blanket

I have a new bundle of squares to add to the 
second many coloured blanket I am doing!
I think this blanket, in terms of the volume of squares,
is at least 2/3rds done!
I just finished the fifth Mitford book,
a lovely re-read and am looking forward to reading some new books,
including some published by Paraclete Press, 
What are you reading and creating?
Yarn Along with us!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Sewing~a small baby doll sized panel!~godson's quilt work continues

I am in the process of making a
1 panel sized quilt.
It's my practice panel for doing the quilting on the 
full sized quilt I am making of this and other 'Thomas panels'
for my godson's quilt. 
I was hoping to do some 'swirls' as a design but
I am having issues with the needle and the machine when I try to do so.
My friend is coming over this week and we will try to figure this out,
as she and I have the same machine. 
So meanwhile I used my walking foot to make strait lines
and like how this looks.
For this quilt, I am going to do something like this,
I think it fits in well with the panels and 
gives it a good sense of movement.
And good for a first large quilt.
I am going to try to match up the lines in each panel 
as I think that will look neat and pleasing to the eye.
This 1 panel quilt is practice and is not fully lined up.
I hope to learn to bind it soon and have a finished object!
I am so glad I get to do this!
What are you creating and doing this week?

Monday, February 22, 2016

Sunshine on a Monday ~ tea and tasks ~ with Cleo nearby

I don't know if most realize that I spend most days at home
in my new married life.
It's a beautiful space, the nicest I have ever lived in as an adult.
I am sitting at my kitchen table and the sunlight is still steaming in,
as it does if it is sunny and in the morning hours.
I was given a new tea in a most beautiful tin on Saturday,
after vespers.
I tried it today. It's gentle and sweet. 
I have a growing assortment of teas and love trying new ones.
I've been really craving various black and chai teas lately.
I have a favourite granola that I can get locally by way of my grocery 
delivery service, low on sugar and I love it with yogurt. 

Both were delivered today...and as you can see,
it's laundry day also,
a normal Monday for me.  
Last week I was not able to get as much done,
so today is catch up day.

 Cleo has had some difficulty as of late,
in part because of having an inferior litter for her.
We are really hoping with the right litter, a better cleaning system
(now checking 2x day and not using bleach cleaners
as the smell, we realized, overwhelms her),
that she will be over her problem.
I am just loving the re-read of the Mitford books.
I am also still reading in Acts.
It's been good to read and remember the newness of the faith,
at that time, the LIFE and freedom of it.
Not free from suffering, no, but free from the law, 
from the old rules and ways.
I am almost done with reading a book,
by a Christian who is Protestant I think,
on the Jesus Prayer.
It's been a good book to read, a bit uneven in places,
and missing a few things in terms of understanding Orthodoxy
but sincere, fairly well written and really 
seeming to want to learn to pray and share this prayer with the West,
which are all good things.
I hope to do a review of it at some point.
I have been in NJ over 3 years and I still often feel
disoriented in terms of how to have a schedule for myself
and what it means to have a spiritual life here.
I would say I 'do' more in church now -
bookstore, Sunday School, hopefully the library too - 
but I don't have the friends I had in Ottawa to pray with -
but - have my husband and we do night prayers - 
but - well - my experience of Orthodoxy and Church is really
different here.
I've had some homesick-for-Ottawa moments but yet
I have a husband who is perfect for me and who
I can discuss Church, theology, history with and I have so much.
But I also know what I left and do miss it - and that it seems
impossible to explain to anyone here what it is that I don't have.
So it is.
Just have to trust God that He has me where He wants me
and surely my cup does overflow with so many blessings.
Including that Sunday School went well yesterday!
It's a real learning curve.
I feel like I have more time to gear up for Lent this year,
and that is a real blessing.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

about today...

It is sunny today.
Mr. Husband and I did not get much sleep Sunday night + exhausting ride back 
home on Monday + other stuff has left me quite tired and feeling unwell this week.
Mr. Husband is trying new ways, including reading in his armchair,
for preparing for sleep as he, and often I, are not sleeping through the night.
I am hoping to have more time for prayer and reading.
I am always reading 5 or so books at a time.
I have been doing book orders for church and am dedicating more time to
read new books and also old... I am also weeding books from our collection 
that were mine and making room for new books.
One book we just got I can't find! Sigh...
I am dealing with some real but for many reasons unbloggable grief.
I am writing in a journal about it.
I am writing it for myself and because I don't see what needs to be written
anywhere else, so I am writing it.
Ironic to write about 'it' here as i am not blogging about it directly.
But you will just have to trust that I am doing the best
I can and am being very direct and proactive about it.
I do have grief that is easier to write a bit about,
as much as grief is 'easy', as in it is not at all easy,
... we did the first memorial service for Mr Husband's godson
for his birthday which was this past weekend.

The now 7 year old Munchkin who lost his father, my Husband's adult godson,
was there of course for the service, 
the picture above is one of Munchkin's church friends;
one of two brothers, both of whom were there, praying, right with the priest and deacons.
I pointed this out to the Munchkin, that his friends were there
praying with him, for his Dad.
I did my first order from Paraclete Press today,
including some DVDs on grief.
The vigil service was lovely for the Feast this past Monday
and I had some time to talk to the Munchkin about
many things, including confession, which he and others in his 
Sunday School class are going to do for the first time,
that I have been trying to teach them about,
more and more, trying to prepare them.

I am knitting and getting a good amount of new squares to add to the many coloured blanket....

I watched a sweet movie yesterday,
What Katy Did, 
and loved it.
I am devouring the Mitford books all over again 
and find solace in them.
What has your week and day been like?
I know we all have struggles, joys, hopes and beauty in our lives. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Beautiful Blue and the World of Little House

I am loving this book, The World of Little House,
which Mr. Husband got me for Valentines day this year.
It took forever to get the blue skein of yarn into the two 
balls of blue yarn you see in the first picture.
I knitted with double thread to make this square extra-squishy and thick.
While I had a long drive home after liturgy on Monday,
it was near white-out snow conditions and I was 
busy making sure Mr Husband had the most ideal 
driving conditions
(water bottle, helping clean the windows, and just watching
and keeping him company as we were both tired) and so
this one lone square done on the drive up is 
what I have to share.
But we got home safely and I am so grateful for it all! 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Taking down the Christmas Tree

Yesterday was the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple. 
The 40 days of Christmas is now complete.
And so, the Christmas tree was put away today, after
one more deeply admiring glance of all the wonder, beauty and
memories that these ornaments have for me...

This has to be one of my favourite.
And oldest. 
From a teacher in my pre-school years.

The most beautiful.

Simple, sweet and the pinnacle of the Christmas story...
a new one for me this year from a dear friend...

Handmade beauty, new this year also from another dear friend. 

This beauty is new this year, from my quilting friend!

Not new this year but very beloved, from a dear friend in Ottawa...

From BC sent to me years ago when I lived in Ottawa...

All tucked away for another year, DV.

Our priest comforted us in saying that the Pascha cycle of looking forward to Pascha,
the 40 days of Lent, etc. was coming...
The Easter Eggs in the above picture will be put out in early May,
Pascha for us is late this year, May 1!

Our tree is now put away, snug in our closet....

I am looking forward to next Advent and getting all these beautiful ornaments out again!
What are you looking forward to?

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Coloured Squares and Heaven Meets Earth

Progress on my many coloured blanket is continuing! 
I have been reading the great new children's book
Heaven Meets Earth on the 12 Feasts of the 
Orthodox Church.
Great Sunday School Material! 
What are you reading and creating?
Yarn Along with us!

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Busy with many lovely things

Time is a funny thing.
It is long but it is swift
and suddenly there is not enough time
to do everything.
My smart phone, where I take a lot of my pictures,
is not working with my chrome book for downloading pictures,
so even blogging has slowed.
I have been busy working on a pre-Lent book sale,
doing Sunday School things,
Am just getting to take Christmas things down.
The tree is staying this week yet.
I hope to get back to sewing next week.
I had a wonderful tea today with a friend...
pictures later, but for now, these three pictures...

Last week, I think it was,
I finally made crepes for the first time since we moved...
how we just never got to this before now, not sure,
but we enjoyed many fun desserts with them,
just add some French Vanilla Ice Cream and a dusting of cocoa and
one has a delicious dessert! Great with a banana too!

I was looking for a book and ended up rearranging my children's book section.
Much better. I have some more books to add yet, so will have to figure that out,
but am very happy with it.
It also helps as I have Sunday School to think of as well,
and having it rearranged, now all my Sunday School books are
there as well, as I put all my Orthodox kids books together!

And I finally had my first burger and milk shake since before
Was so very yummy!
I had gotten a cold somewhat after Christmas so had cut out
a lot of nice to be back to normal now!
How are things going for you, in your corner of the world,
your pocket of sky?

Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Coloured Squares Sewn Together and visiting Mitford

My blanket is progressing! 
Over 1/3 done, nearing 1/2 in terms of size!
I read the first Mitford book again recently,
it was good to visit many of my favourite characters!
(and enjoying some tea and chocolate along the way!)
What are you reading and creating?
Yarn Along with us!