Sunday, January 31
Saturday, January 30
Friday, January 29
Cake from earlier in the week
Tuesday, January 26
This is the whole setup now... it is very similar to how it used to be. I am still thinking about seeing if I can find two more baskets to fit in the last two cubes. We have the dollhouse and farm in the nursery right now and will switch the castle with them every so often to keep things fresh and intersting.
The Liturgical and Seasonal Shelf... it is a little bare right now, but I really like that it is eye level with the children. Little Man is particularly smitten with it. I am looking forward to getting some things from our walks on the shelves. We have St Joseph, the Theotokos (Mary), and the Christ Child there since it is nearly the feast of the Meeting of the Lord (February 2nd).
Monday, January 25
Here is my list for this week:
1. Experiment with pretty hairstyles for Sugar Plum... watching Emma last night and seeing a few little girls with simple yet pretty hair, has encouraged me to try this out!
2. Purchase some pretty flowers for the table.
3. Renew efforts to wear hair down and put on a little makeup each morning.
4. Decorate a little for Valentine's Day - now that the Christmas tree is down, things are looking a little bleak around here! I am eager to see what I can come up with for the mantle.
5. Grumble and sigh less!
Once you have chosen five simple things, post them on your blog and let us know in the comments section. If you do not have a blog, but have a commitment to share, please post them in the comments section.
Saturday, January 23
Bonnet Tip: By Sun and Candlelight
Edited to Add: PBS will be posting Emma on their website so that people can view it online.
Friday, January 22
Edited to Add: It is 12:53 pm, and Metropolitan Jonah still hasn't spoken. Maybe they meant that he'd be the first religious leader to speak (those haven't started yet). Tune in if you have the chance!
Thursday, January 21
Wednesday, January 20
Tuesday, January 19
Monday, January 18
Reposted from last February.
Sunday, January 17
January 24, 2010
Sanctity of Life Sunday
To the Venerable Hierarchs, Clergy, Monastics and Faithful of the Orthodox Church in America
Dearly Beloved in Christ:
As Orthodox Christians, we strongly affirm the value and sanctity of all human life, from the moment of conception to the final breath one takes. This affirmation is theologically based, in that each person bears within him or her self the image of God, and has the potential to fulfill that image by likening him/herself to God. To artificially terminate life is to transgress on that which is holy; it is unthinkable, a grave sin.
Every one of our churches and our homes bear the image of the infant Christ cradled in the arms of His Mother, an image that is supremely human, and supremely divine. It is the image of divine Motherhood, that the Son of God was conceived, borne and nurtured by His Most Pure Mother. God is thus revealed in the Motherhood of the Virgin; bearing us in Her holy embrace of love. This image also reveals God's love for us, that he became like us in every way--a fetus in His Mother's womb, an infant in Her arms, a little child. God has sanctified every aspect of human life, becoming what we are that He might make us like Himself.
As Orthodox, every aspect of our lives is iconic. Every child is an image of the Christ Child, every person an image of God. Each bears infinite potential to attain to the Likeness, to sainthood, to holiness. Marriage also is an icon, as the union of man and woman in the flesh blessed by God, and bringing forth the fruit of children, is an image of our union with one another in Christ in the Kingdom.
Christian marriage and family are the sacred context not only for the rearing of children, but as the basic core of our identity and reference point of stability. The family is the place where we are nurtured and accepted, find solace and consolation, and thus the faithful family becomes the place where these very human emotions and feelings are filled with grace and sanctified. Whether we are very young or very old, the family is the context of our life, in which we work out our salvation. We experience God's Fatherhood, and divine Motherhood; we experience the nurturing love which becomes a participation in divine communion. And as we breathe our last, should we not remember the image of the crucified Christ, carried in the arms of his mother, in her grief, the grief of every mother for her child?
We affirm the sanctity of life, made holy by the incarnation of the Christ. We affirm that every stage of our life has been sanctified. We affirm marriage of one man and one woman as the foundation of the family, the image of our union with God, and the means of sanctifying the lives of all members of that family by the grace of love and divine communion.
These are desperate times. Our society is in despair. It is a despair that manifests itself in the breakdown of essential relationships, of marriage and family. Continued unemployment leads to hopelessness, and the breakdown of trust that one is able to provide; this leads to the breakdown of marriages, and the bitterness that goes with it. Returning soldiers, with posttraumatic stress just below the surface, enter into relationships that often turn brutal and abusive. Marriage, and the very family itself are in question, with the issue of homosexual unions. The majority of marriages end in divorce, and the majority of children grow up without fathers or mothers; and how many pregnancies end in abortion? Despair is the primary context which could make it even possible for a mother to destroy her unborn child.
We offer, always, the way to healing and reconciliation for those who have fallen short and fallen into sin, in an embrace of love. We offer hope to those who have lost hope through the guilt of sin. We offer consolation to those in sorrow. We offer support and guidance to build families that work out their salvation together, and become the rock and foundation of our culture. Through these things, re-incarnating Christ's love and redemption in hearts, in real faces, in institutions of concrete service and healing, we offer hope to our people, our culture, our society, and through that hope, joy as we see God reborn in our lives and in those of all around us.
Yours in Christ,
Archbishop of Washington
Metropolitan of All America and Canada
Saturday, January 16
When the package with A Pocketful of Seeds arrived, I eagerly ripped into the envelope. I have been reading Sylvia's blog, Adventures of an Orthodox Mom for nearly two years now and couldn't wait to see her first children's book! My excitement was justified! It is a beautiful book full of Orthodox Spirituality for children.
The story is told from the perspective of a young boy who is living through a war evacuation and is separated from his family. He meets a holy monk named Papouli and they begin traveling together planting seeds all across the land despite harsh conditions and opposition from the people they encounter.
Both young and old will enjoy this beautiful story of love, perseverance, and forgiveness. Our daughter was especially taken by the beauty of A Pocketful of Seeds. She has requested we read this book aloud over and over for weeks now. Since both Father John and I both enjoy the story, we are happy to oblige! A Pocketful of Seeds is one book that will always have a home on our shelf!
Tuesday, January 12
Sunday, January 10
Saturday, January 9
Thursday, January 7
Friday, January 1
2 slices of ham for each piece of chicken
Monterrey Jack cheese
1 to 1 1/2 pounds of beef tenderloin
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 stick of butter
3 T. all-purpose flour
3 c. beef stock heated to a simmer
1 medium onion
9 T. sour cream
3 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 box of mushrooms
Cut beef tenderloin into thin strips. Dice onion. Melt 1 T. of butter in a pan and add beef tenderloin, onion, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook the meat as desired (our family cooks it all the way through). Clean and slice mushrooms. Melt 1 T. of butter in another pan and saute. Melt 4 1/2 T. of butter in saucepan. Whisk in flour and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add beef stock and and whisk constantly for 3 -4 minutes to prevent lumps. Simmer until sauce is smooth and thickened. Add 9 T. of sour cream and whisk. Put in the Dijon mustard and whisk. Add sauteed mushrooms and beef tenderloin and stir. Prepare egg noodles according the the package directions. Put a bed of noodles on each plate and spoon beef stroganoff on top. Serve hot.