Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Visiting Vladyka John

So while in CA 2 weeks ago, 
I went to see
St John, still called by many, Vladkya John.
My favourite stories of him come out of an out of print book,
esp the stories by the woman in France who knew him
and writes of how his prayers helped her after he left France
and after he departed to the Mansions of the Righteous. 
So, there is a section towards the very end of CS Lewis' novel
till we have faces that talks about the main character saying
"I have no more questions, you are the answer" 
which is close to how it was when I was with St John.
I was given this deep sense of peace, a quiet joy, as if I was in a
different space, so much so that the prayers I thought I would be praying
with a sense of anguish, I felt like I nearly forgot to pray at all,
as it was like I had no problems at all, no worries, just this sense of peace,
of joy, something beyond myself or even my experience at the time,
as in I have been struggling a lot with feelings of worry and 
of a sense of weariness but there, I felt like it was all taken away,
as if I forgot the problems had ever been there...
so this was what God gave me, in the presence of this Saint
who loved Christ so much and was full of the Holy Spirit. 
It was very special.
I know that I am weak and don't know how to keep this peace within
myself but I hope I will never forget what it was like
and what I was given that day.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Monday 6th week of Great Lent 2018

My week in CA and then weekend in AZ
had many beautiful moments and many dreams
and I was very touched by beauty
and the Saints.
Last week was a really rough reentry, being so 
greatly fatigued and with a chest cold.  I think it was
last Wednesday I barely got out of bed! It was pretty extreme.
I did not make it to liturgy yesterday.
Today some laundry was done and I had help
cleaning the house, which was a real real blessing.
I've watched some worthwhile PG movies online
while resting over the last while,
as well as reading Orthodox books.
Tonight Mr Husband took me out to the diner for dinner.
The unbloggable stuff is like a sea-saw, up and down, up and down...
the good thing is that my Husband and I love each other deeply
and we pray together and that, right there, is a deep great goodness.
My Aunt who I visited earlier this month in MI
is back in Hospital and has some troubling health struggles.
We really don't know how long we will have her.
It's a hard space to be in.
It's been hard to stay encouraged and optimistic when in the midst of a
terrifically flourishing chest and then head cold.
But, in God we trust.
In Christ we have hope.
And soon, soon, it will be Pascha.... 
So dear ones, let's all hold on, a little longer,
as we wait for our King, our Christ, our Heavenly Bridegroom.... 

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Made it to church tonight, thank God.
Rested a lot.
Still congested, cough.
I am so thankful it is not worse. 
My Husband let me get take out and I had a really nice
hot lentil soup!  
I am hoping that I will be better by next Saturday, when 
the church services begin for the days just before Holy Week!

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Thursday 5th Week of Great Lent 2018

(Picture taken at St Anthony's Monastery)
Today I have had a bit more energy, 
compared to yesterdays extreme all day bed rest.
Cough, cold and fatigue still is present, so I won't be 
blogging much today but though I would pop in briefly.
I am reading more of the letters of Fr John Krestiankin 
from his book of letters, May God give you wisdom!
The letters are full of helpful instruction, wisdom, profundity 
and direction, of course to be taken with the understanding of
one's own situation.
I am enjoying this read...
I really hope I am back to full strength by Holy Week.
I already know that I will not be baking Kulich this year;
thankfully we are still provided for in that.
May God help us all and have mercy!

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

5th week of Great Lent ~ Wednesday

A very quiet day.
Snowed most of today.
Husband worked from home.
I was in bed a lot of today, really wiped out.
I don't think I have the flu, just a cold I think; 
I did a video consult with an NP
who recommended more rest, etc.

"Illness compensates for our lack of labours for God" 
~ Fr John Krestiankin from his book of letters, _May God give you wisdom_. 
I find this comforting. God has many ways for us. 
Of course this letter also speaks of prayers for the ill and for good health.
I am always relieved that God takes illness as a labour; surely when I am not well,
there is not much I can do other than go through it. 
Picture from our time at St Anthony's Monastery. 
God bless and help us all!

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

A quiet day of rest

Picture from St Anthony's Monastery.
I hope to share more soon about last week and weekend.
So beautiful.
Today I rested a lot.
I may be coming down with a chest cold, 
so a lot more resting is in my near future!
I am so thankful for the life I have with my Husband 
and for the special time we had at St Anthony's!
We are supposed to have a snow day tomorrow
so I am guessing Mr Husband will work from home,
which will be really nice!
We had takeout for dinner tonight
and my Sweet Husband came home with
yellow and white flowers for me!
I love them!
May God bless and help us all!

Monday, March 19, 2018

A week of Firsts in Great Lent 2018

A week ago Monday I flew to CA to be with my quilting friend while Mr Husband
was in CA for work. 
I've never been to California and it was a wonderful Monday-Friday morning.
And I got to see St John in SF!!!! 
On Friday my beloved Husband and I flew to AZ to see
dear friends and spend time at St Anthony's Monastery,
also a first for me.
It was a really blessed time.
I hope to write more about all of this later and share more pictures.
Meanwhile, I am still reordering our home (suitcases etc), resting up and 
continuing on with Great Lent.
We just got home this afternoon...
I pray that each of you will be given the mercy you stand in need of; we all 
need God's help so much!

Friday, March 09, 2018

Thursday, Friday of the 3rd week of Great Lent

Well, here we are, nearly at the end of another week
and a week of Great Lent.
It's not been the best sleeping nights this week,
so am tired.
The unbloggable stuff is hard.
But am appreciating what we have... 
a very funny cat, 
a loving home, good food to eat,
a church locally to go to.
Lots of patience needed, trust in God.
May God help us and have mercy.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Cranberry Apple Cake for a Snow Day

I used the above recipe and did the following changes:
1/3 or so cup of cranberries (I would add even more next time! yum!)
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup vanilla sugar, big chunky sugar; raw sugar, also big chunky sugar about 1/3 cup or so, brown sugar about 1/3  cup a finer grain sugar; these sugars (the first 2) were mixed with the 
slightly OVER 2 cups of apples sliced into chunks and the brown sugar mixed with the cranberries,
which were added after the other sugars mixed with the apples. 
I added about 1/2 cup or so extra flour
about 1/3 to 1/2 extra of cinnamon and cloves
a bit of a heaping tsps of the baking soda 
1 cup exactly of cold (in fridge for over 12 hours) (instant!) coffee
1 cup canola oil (or maybe just a hint more, it was added first).
fruit was added after the batter was mixed.
I sprinkled a bit of the raw sugar on the top of the cake.
The heart shaped tin was done first, about 35 minutes or so.
Round one last I think.... 
a nice cake, not too sweet. 
I think I could of added even more cloves.
Maybe some ginger? (am thinking of my Koek recipe!)
It was really nice to do!

Well, it was a nice snow day.
Mr Husband worked from home.
Presanctified liturgy was cancelled because of the 
weather and rescheduled for Friday.
I got books delivered today!
I have a lot to do...
I am grateful.
We still got the same old unbloggable stress
but God is helping us enjoy what we have each day
and trust Him for the rest. 
I know we are very blessed!
God bless and help us all!
I know so many are suffering and I pray God's mercy
and deliverance for each! 

Tuesday, March 06, 2018

Home with my Sweet Husband

My weekend at the Monastery was a blessed time!
Monday I had lunch with my Grandma,
saw my Aunt K who is ill in the afternoon with my parents,
gave her the beautiful stone from HDMonastery
with the verse
My grace is sufficient.
She really liked it. 
My flight home was uneventful thank God.
Today I cleaned, organized, tidied, did laundry and walked
downtown, to the water front, which is where you can see NYC.
I bought some food at the upscale grocer nearby 
as tomorrow we are in for some snow it seems.
I am glad to be back home
and in an orderly space.
Cleo is glad I am back too!
Read dear Gloriade's blog and found out that she has been
laid up form an accident; pray for her healing please!
There is so much need for prayer.
May the Lord protect and help us all!
ps: I am going to be quite busy in the next 2 weeks, so if I don't blog much,
that's why.  Don't fret if you don't hear from me consistently right now!
Just busy! :)

Friday, March 02, 2018

A Friday with Sunshine in Michigan

A full day. 
Did a bunch of pictures to begin documenting 
the story of my family through beauty in their home. 
Listened to / saw parts of Billy Graham's funeral. 
Dinner out with family. 
Preparing DV to go to the Monastery tomorrow for a brief stay.
I loved the sunshine that we were blessed with here. 


Thursday was a nice rest day.
My Mom and I watched a nice movie in the afternoon.
Everything she makes always tastes so good.
She made stovetop popcorn with a little bit of oil and some salt
and it was just perfect.
We had a really nice dinner, with masala burgers 
and my Mom's mashed potatoes, homegrown beans, 
and homemade applesauce.