Saturday, December 10, 2011

advent and other random thoughts

Or alternately titled "seven not-so-quick takes"

1.  The wonderful liturgical season of Advent.  Possibly my favorite.  It stands in contrast to the fever pitch that the rest of society reaches at this time of the year.  It has been a good one, so far, for me.  I have done a little bit of my Christmas shopping already.  (this is a first!)  Taking advantage of some of the early sales and not creating more pressure for myself at the last minute.  One thing I have tried to do is to read one of the readings from the daily Office of Readings from the Liturgy of the Hours.  (There's a free app for that.)  There are two readings each day after the Psalms.  One is from scripture and the other is usually a homily or some writing from a saint or someone significant in the early church.  Today's was kind of "out there", but some are really good.  There is such a wealth of unread treasure in our church.

2.  Speaking of church...Thursday was the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  A holy day.  I took my boys with me to 6:30 Mass.  It wasn't really a huge sacrifice...we left the house a little later than we usually do when they catch the bus.  We did the same for All Saint's Day and they made it to school before the tardy bell rang.  I guess the new translation runs a little longer, because this time we didn't make it.  They were 8 or so minutes late.  Not to worry....religious observance is an excused absence.  So I went in with them to check them in.  I said something to this effect to the Assistant Principal who was standing there (I used to work with her long ago).  She had some comment like "good try".  Kind of uncalled for, I thought, and they marked the kids as "unexcused".  They both called my attention to it, and I just told them I would research it further.

I found a copy of the student handbook when I got to school, and sure enough...  So I emailed someone in the office of Census and Attendance for clarification.  He told me to email him my children's names and he would take care of it..

3.   I can check their grades and attendance record on line.  The greatest thing ever.  There's a free app for that, too.

4.  I had an observation on Monday(by my principal).  He's a pretty laid-back kind of guy, so I wasn't really too stressed.  I had him come when I have fifth grade.  Oh my!  I had two that claimed they had headaches and they didn't do anything.  My student with autism was in full autistic mode.  Another one took his shoes off and then decided in the middle of my math lesson that his desk needed to be 409'd.  It was a circus.  But it is over.  As he left,my principal said, "Well, THAT was interesting."  Oh well.  Laugh.  Cry.  It is what it is and it's why I cling dearly to the brink of sanity.  He did say that I "handled it well." 

5.  Our parish has an annual Christmas concert called "Lessons and Carols".  Scripture readings alternating with Christmas songs.  I go every year...usually the guys stay  home and watch football.  I have been toying with the idea of becoming a lector at Mass.  It's been a thought for a long time - even before I was asked to be a Eucharistic Minister.  Some of the people who read...oh my...I try to be charitable, but sometimes I just want to scream, "It's 'expiate" not 'expedite"!     But I am reluctant to know...what if I suck at it?  So earlier in the week, I had the idea of reading for Lessons and Carols.  It could be a kind of trial run.  But then I figured that readers had already been selected.  Today on FB, our parish's music director was lamenting the fact that he had picked the "wrong" weekend.  Our local university football team is playing in a bowl game in New Orleans and the Saints play on Sunday, and some of the readers wouldn't be back in time.  So I offered to read.  :-)  Cool how God arranges things sometimes. 

6.  My kids are going to New Orleans this weekend with a friend (one of their wrapping buddies)  to watch the football team from their school play for the State Championship.  The house where they are staying is right by the French Quarter.  They were excited.

7; I prayed for my car the other night.  (I got the idea from one of our Bible Studies.)  The 4-wheel-drive on my vehicle seems to be going out.  Sometimes it gets stuck in 4WD, but always the next time I start it, it is back to normal.  Last week, one day, it was stuck in 4WD all day.   So after I dropped off my young 'en at the football game, I stopped in at the church just for a minute.  "Lord, if you wouldn't mind, I would appreciate it if you could get the stupid thing out of 4 wheel drive."  I went back out, got in the car and guess what???  It was out of 4WD!  I love how God is there in even the little details of our lives.


  1. Karen: THanks for sharing these interesting details from your life. Our (new) parish does lessons and carols and I might be the only one going from my family. One son is bike racing; the other has basketball and on and on.

    Anyway, I am glad your observation went well. I had one last week with my principal and it was fine but at my post-observation mtg I could not stop sweating even though all was well. It is stressful no matter what!


  2. wow...the "good try" comment? That is astonishing and sad, really. #7...on it for one of our cars ;-)

  3. Take it from somebody how used to observe coworkers: Part of the observation is seeing how things are handled. I'm sure the results are going to great!
    Love the idea of "Lessons and Carols"! Very cool! And, yes, it is cool how God arranges things for His glory!