My Lent 2019 Book List Plans

Is this the year you really want to dive into Lent? Do you want to come out of this Lenten Season and truly feel that you've had a small share of living in the desert with Christ for 40 days? I know that I do. Maybe it's an upcoming birthday that's making me have more of a now-or-never type of attitude towards Lent. Or maybe I just acutely feel the necessity of truly modeling this for my children, and living it with my husband. Whatever it is, these are the books and resources I'm going to use this Lent to really LIVE the season from Ash Wednesday all the way through to Easter Vigil. Look them over. If something looks helpful to you, use it. If it inspires you, go with it. I hope all of these bless and encourage you.

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7-Quick takes

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1.  Last fall, I remember thinking to myself that I better plant a lot of tulip bulbs, or I would really, really regret it in the spring when I longed for a pop of color around the house!
april 2016 025
And now I really, really regret planting the tulip bulbs around the house because two weeks of snow and cold are seriously hurting my beautiful tulips.

It hasn't been great for my magnolia tree either!
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2.  The Pope's new "apostolic exhortation" Amoris Laetitia  came out yesterday and already people are writing and talking about it.  I barely got it downloaded to my Kindle (it's over 200 pages long) let alone read it and digest it.  The text itself says in Paragraph 7  "I do not recommend a rushed reading of the text," and yet the Pope is really getting clobbered on Facebook and around the internet for this one.  I reserve judgement.  From what I briefly read I think what he is trying to say is that the church's teachings are good and true, and everyone should strive to follow them - but we have to be kind and pastoral when ministering to people who aren't there yet!  I get it.

3.  April and May are the hardest parts of the year for homeschoolers.  The end is in sight, yet we wonder if we have done enough and we are already planning for next year.  I submit that it's even harder when you are graduating one of your kids.  My mind is always riddled with doubt about what we tried to cover and what we didn't cover.

That all said, the three adult kids I have graduated were all a bit like Ivory soap - they sunk a little when they hit the water, but managed to make it to the top sooner or later, and I think Noah is even more prepared (because he's just wired that way!) than his brothers were to do well in college and in life.
Ivory Soap
National Museum of American History via flickr, licensed cc

4.  Noah's AP World History Teacher wrote this to me last week:

It has been a pleasure teaching Noah--he is one of my best students ever!  I am persuaded that if I had had him earlier, I could have helped him go to an Ivy League school, U. of Chicago, or Northwestern.  
We're happy with the small Catholic College he's planning to attend next year, but it was still very nice to read that.

Nice to affirmations like that when things like this still lurk in my memory.

5.  Calvin has been gone now for one year. I didn't mark the anniversary, but it was lurking in the background of my mind. I wouldn't say my heart has hardened in regards to my first born, but it has maybe toughened with a protective callus. Or maybe it's more accurate to say that in the hard drive of my mind, that particular file is now closed and on a different disk drive - easy to access if need be but not needed as a desktop reminder any more.

 As far as that kid goes, my job is done. And although the invisible bonds of motherhood endure forever and stretch beyond the miles, I'm can't let them strangle me. So the anniversary came and went, and I remembered.. The scar ached and the callus thickened a little more, but I didn't shed a tear. I'm kind of proud of that.
6.  Luckily, there is Facebook and admittedly, that takes a lot of the sting out of having a kid live so far away.  Here is a funny video of Calvin's dog from last week.

This video is of my dog trying to crawl up the wall with guilt
Posted by Calvin LaVictoire on Friday, April 8, 2016

7.   Rosie is in love with historical fiction right now, and so we have discovered Carolyn Meyers and her stories of ancient princesses written from their perspective. Since the key audience for these books are in the 8 to 12 year old range, they are perfect for Rosie!  And she is devouring them! She has only three chapters left in Mary, Bloody Mary, so I ended up ordering the next book, Beware, Princess Elizabeth.