My Spring Reading List!

After the heavier reading of Lent, I thought I'd like to continue some inspirational spiritual reading through the Easter season as well. 

Here's my book list!

Private and Pithy lessons from Scripture - Mother Angelica
Little Book of Life Lessons - Mother Angelica
Three to Get Married - Fulton Sheen
The Little Oratory
Diary Sister Faustina
Getting Past Perfect - Kate Wicker
The Words We Pray - Amy Welborn
Perfectly Yourself - Matthew Kelly 
Crossing the Threshold of Hope - Pope John Paul II

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Today is the unofficial start of the Christmas Shopping Season - Black Friday!. Monday is cyber Monday. 

Shopping through my  affiliate link helps to supply my homeschool with school and art supplies,
Izzy art

pay for piano lessons,

and helps me pay for shoes for my distance runners.

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Comes in handy for my college student as well!
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Thanks for your generosity in this past year. I truly appreciate it.

It's hard to believe, this Sunday is Christ the King Sunday, and the next week is the First Sunday of Advent! Are you looking for something seasonal to do with the kids to keep the focus on Advent and Christmas?

A Gentle Advent is an online course with PDFs and videos to keep your children focused on Advent and prepare for Christmas. I am happy to be one of their new affiliates.
Everyday Graces

Let A Gentle Advent guide your family on a beautiful exploration of the season.

Daily scripture journaling to draw your hearts into the celebration.
Charlotte Mason inspired studies and activities to delight and inspire.
Time to reflect, to sing, to learn, and to grow in this season of expectation and beauty.

David Cassidy passed away this week. He was 67 years old and my kids have no idea who he was.

But back in 1970, David Cassidy and the Partridge Family made for must-see-t.v.  The premise for this sit-com was a widowed mother and her five children hitting the road and making music to put food on the table and make ends meet. The delightful Shirley Jones played the mom of the troupe. Her talents and performance added to the music. That she was David Cassidy's step-mother helped to give the show more of a family feel.

Maybe it was the fact that my own single-mother was using her musical skills as a teacher to support us, that the premise of this show appealed to me so much. Or maybe it was the idea that the family could make music and make a living together. But while maybe we liked Shirley and were mesmerized by Laurie (played by Susan Dey) we were crushing on David Cassidy's Keith Partridge. Keith seemed like the perfect future boyfriend for us tweeners at the time. He was cute, funny, a good big brother and a devoted son. And when he sang we swooned.

People make fun of the show and the music now, but even by 21st century standards, that sound reflected good musicality! The harmonies were rich, the tunes were catchy, and the lyrics were memorable.

Next weekend, a group I am in will be singing the 12 Days of Regifted Christmas that has the continued refrain "On the first day of Christmas someone gave to me, an album by the Partridge Family." The idea of the song is that people re-gift things they don't really want or care for. That the Partridge Family album gets named continuously feels a little inappropriate to me - especially now with David Cassidy's recent death. The song's were good. America loved them. Maybe they'll be rediscovered.

4.  My husband has been busily working on the monk outfits he volunteered to make. He is  1/3 of the way done - 8 more to do.  This is his own design and they are made of fleece - super comfortable!!

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5.  I have been watching the old Beauty and the Beast TV Series from the 1980s on Amazon prime with my 18-year-old daughter Izzy.

I had very fond memories of that show. I loved that the main character, Catherine Chandler, (portrayed by Linda Hamilton of Terminator I and II fame)  was so strong and resolute, I loved that the Beast, Vincent,  was so well read and loved poetry and books, and every week I wanted them to kiss so badly!!  Every week they would tease that a kiss was coming. They would look into each other's eyes and their faces would get close, and then it would turn into a very warm and passionate hug.

Rewatching the series has been fascinating for me. The stories in the first season after the first episode become a little dull and rote. Catherine works for the DA of New York. She gets into some kind of trouble that puts her life at risk, and Vincent appears out of nowhere to slash and mangle the bad guys to death with his claws. In between times Catherine and Vincent read poetry deep in his cave city with other loveable outcasts coming in and out of the picture, or he appears magically on Catherine's 17th-story balcony.

At the very beginning of Season 3, the couple not only kiss, but essentially consummate their relationship - sort of. This was confusing to me back in 1988 and it isn't any clearer with time. In fact, I had to tell Izzy what was happening. Vincent was having some kind of mental breakdown that filled him with rage and impulsivity. He was violent and dangerous. So of course, the Catherine must go into his hidden cave to be with him. She finds Vincent unconscious from his exertions. We assume he was near death since she kept saying "No, no!" when she listened for a heartbeat. She started kissing him directly on the lips, something fans waited many months for, and then the music starts.  The screen fades to the imagery of fire, and a flower blooming and hands coming together... it's very full of imagery suggestive of some kind of important event, but since Vincent was weak and asleep, and the couple is found fully clothed with his head in her lap, it's hard to get get to the notion that something sexual happened. We don't find that out until later in the episode when Catherine finds out she is pregnant.

Izzy looked at me and said, "So, she had sex with him, when he was not able to consent and he doesn't have any memory of this. Isn't that rape or sexual assault mom?"

Well - yeah. By today's standards, it sure is. But back then she was giving herself fully to him to soothe the savage beast and bring him back to sanity. It's a stretch, but I can say with confidence that the general public didn't see Catherine Chandler as a rapist or sexual predator.

There's nothing like watching shows and movies from the past with millenials. It gives you an entirely different perspective!

6.  Thanksgiving Day was full or running in the morning and merrymaking in the afternoon. Rosie came in 4th in her age group of 1 to 14 year olds. She was bested by three 14-year-old, so I think she did well. We had a great day and the crowd was great.
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7.  A lot of the gang. My oldest and his wife were missing as were my sister's two girls and my granddaughter. But those of us that made it had a great time.