Sunday, April 27, 2008

Christ is Risen!

Greetings with the Feast of the Resurrection of our Lord!

Christ is Risen!....Truly, He is Risen!
Christos Voskrese!....Voistinu Voskrese! (Slavonic)
Christos Anesti!....Alithos Anesti! (Greek)
Hristos a Inviat!....Adeverat a Inviat! (Romanian)
Ha Mashiyach Qam!....Ken Hoo Qam! (Hebrew)

"He is not here, He is Risen!"

Christ is Risen from the dead,
Trampling down Death by Death,
And upon those in the tombs bestowing life!

Christ is Risen!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

My hopes and dreams

I have always had dreams and since the first part has already come true (marrying prince charming and becoming a mommy), I have time to think about other goals in life. Well then, here we go!
I would like to see a women's monastery somewhere here in the states as part of our jurisdiction, if you will. I dream that someday we will have one close by. I think it is such an important part of our Faith that we are really quite deprived without one. Some may think I am silly, but I will cling to this dream as long as I live until it comes to fruition. Women monastics are really remarkable, even moreso to me than the men who become monks. In order that a man serve in the church, he must have a calling to the job, but he also has the option of being married (as a priest) or unmarried (as a monk). Women who are called to give their lives to the Church do not have that choice, which is just fine, but if they choose to become the Bride of God, they will give up their earthly lives completely. It is not to say that women who are a part of their parish cannot give a great deal to God, but there is something very special in the woman who chooses to be a nun, or an abbess. Just my own thoughts on the subject. I would just love to have one somewhere near.
Next, I would like to have a soup kitchen for those in need. I would like to serve fresh, homemade soups and breads to people. How to go about this? I have no idea, but God knows my heart and will guide me accordingly, if it is His will. In all honesty, it would be nice to have a shelter of some sort for people. Then we get to my next dream...
I am thinking that we should have a retirement home for those elderly of the Church. There are so many people, immigrants or not, who are alone and have trouble both making food for themselves as well getting to church. I think we would all benefit from this sort of thing. Perhaps this is where my soup and bread dreams may more than likely come into play, a sort of little combo. Again, whatever is God's will, I will take it.
Last, but not least, we need a real church for us. Our church is small and we have made do up to a point, but it is starting to get ridiculous! We need a proper Orthodox church, one that was built specifically for our purpose. The one we are in now used to a baptist church or something and is far too small. We need a bloomin' Cathedral, in my opinion. Meh, in God's timing, we will see a new church, but I can dream about it as much as I like.
Well, it goes without saying, I think that we would like to have another baby when the time is right, we will just have to see, that will continue to be a dream until we either conceive or adopt, if either be in our 'plan'.
That about does it for now. Kat and Misha, I hope you like all of my paragraphs, I thought of you the whole time =P
XOXO, for now, Me

Saturday, April 19, 2008


It is Lazarus saturday, the beginning of Holy week. Lazarus has been risen from the dead. Tomorrow Christ will enter into Jerusalem and we will all receive our palms to offer on the arrival of our King. The church will be resplendent in greens and everyone will be festive. It truly is a joyful sorrow, for we know that upon Christ's entrance into the city begins the inevitable sequence of events. We must welcome Him, witness the betrayal, take part of the last supper and be humbled by His selfless sacrifice of crucifixion. I love this about church.
Today Fr Boris was talking about how we live our faith, emphasis on the LIVE not the how. We are a part of eternity now because we partake of the Kingdom of Heaven here through active participation and that Holy Week is such an important part of our involvement and faith. We are given such great opportunity to witness it here and now.
This Lent has been an interesting one, certainly not what I am used to, but that is a good thing I suppose. I guess that means that I have the opportunity to give another aspect of my faith/life(they are synonymous so I can't choose just one) a tune-up. It has been terribly realistic in a sort of in your face kind of way. God brings me to my knees when He wishes, but now I am learning to do it myself. It has been good and sobering, I am grateful in a strange way. Here is my life, here is how much time I have left, ummm, get with the program ya lazy bum! In a loving, stern way. I am Prideful, judgmental, talkative, blunt, lazy, distracted, dissatisfied, wanting, frustrated, angry, offensive, oh my, how the list goes on, BUT for the Grace of God, I am able to strip away pieces of these to reveal the simplicity I hide underneath all of that junk! My intentions are good, but oh! How prideful they are! To the Glory of God I can do anything right, there are temptations everywhere, and I am not just talking about chocolate =P Something as simple as the temptation to sleep a little longer and blatantly doing so, then being frustrated that I am not getting up earlier to get things done before Katherine is awake. How can I be vigilant when I am sleeping? It is like, "Just 5 more minutes, God, please?"
Alright, enough of that rambling, I am getting back on track again, I think...I hope. Oh yes, Fr Boris was talking about how we are a part of eternity NOW and that is how we enter into salvation. When we leave this temporal body behind, our soul continues to partake of Christ because we have been doing so already. Well, he said it better than I can sum up, but I think the point gets there.
Lazarus saturday is a traditional day for many faithful people to be baptised, babies to adults. This one in particular marks the baptism of my nephew, Liam, and, as I call her, Kat (these paragraphs are for you =P ). Yay! What a wonderful day all around. The sun is shining (in Colorado, anyway), there is a gentle breeze tickling our chimes outside, Katherine is playing and Jay will be home soon. Life just does not get much better than this! I will always have these moments...when I am old and senile, I hope these are the things that re-run in my head.
Alright, I will go now to my beautiful, wonderful life. Love and hugs to all!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Knight in Shining Armour

I will have to say that I love my husband. This is nothing new to most people. He is a hard working, caring, wonderful man. I appreciate his resolve and ethic, he is a diamond in the rough. He inspires me to be a better person, to be the one he sees when he looks at me with those big brown eyes and that 'sweetie pie' look that he has passed down to his daughter. Before we met, I was SO done dating (not that I did that much dating to begin with, just done with the whole everything about it). I decided that I was going to wait for Prince Charming. Little did I know, by making such resolve, God would give to me a man who would not only love me with everything he has, but he would challenge me and never ask me to change. We have been through a lot in our short 7 years of being together, 5.5 of being married. You would think that the going off to war thing would be the hard part, or the initial getting home and becoming a family again. In all reality, we both changed while he was away, we had to in order to survive...just before our 2nd wedding anniversary, we had ribs and such in an on-base restaurant in our last effort to see each other and pretend it wasn't so bad. Katherine had just turned 1 and my heart was breaking, everything seemed so surreal, but I knew this was God's will and we would survive and that there was a purpose in it, even if we did not see all of it. Some may have thought it was so terrible to happen to us at such a time, I never really thought he would die, I was going to miss him and the life we created together, very selfish reasons. I was NOT in denial, I just did not believe he would die. While he was away, there would be days that I felt like I needed to talk to him, just to hear his voice and I would go to my parents icon corner and get a prayers books out and say a prayer, I think it was the one for the acceptance of God's will, short and to the point and I would say a little extra prayer in my heart. Usually within 24 hrs of my doing so, usually sooner, he would call me (I did not notice it as much then). When he was back and we were sitting with Fr Boris, he explained that there were times, he could not figure out why, but he felt like he just HAD to get to a phone and call me and he did as soon he could. God's will, in everything, God's will. After he was home we had some adjustments, we had to get out of survival mode and get back to family life. It took some work, but with God's help we have made it this far. He did not see anything too crazy when he was there, but he has not totally come back from Iraq, he is back about 99%, but only a wife would notice the other per cent. I think we have really come far together, as a family, as a couple and as individuals. I love him with so much joy that I get to have the rest of our lives together. He has saved me from myself when we met, helped me to find God again and given me a life and a family, I can never express my gratitude. It is amazing what happens when we actually 'let' God take the controls and steer us on our path. I can only imagine what it will be like in the years to come if we can fully surrender to His holy will...He got us through a war, thank you God. Please pray for us that we continue to accept God's will in all ways, that we may hear His words more clearly in our everyday and that we, "Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: Wait, I say, on the Lord." (Psalm 27:14)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

My Little Locks of Love

I am amazed, sometimes, with a child's understanding of life. There are not really any gray areas, only absolutes. I think this is why when we answer maybe, it confounds them, especially when we ask the to give us absolutes. In any case, on with my posting...
Let's see, today I showered for the day and thought it was about time I cut my hair for Locks of Love (if there is anyone who is not familiar, just google it)...I called a friend who cuts hair to ask for help and she directed me to Ulta Salon who cuts hair for Locks of Love free of charge (unless you want something extra special for your post-styling). I found my local Ulta and called to set up an appointment. Katherine told me, "But, mom, I like your hair pretty in a braid." I told her I understood and explained the reason why I was doing it and even showed her a couple pictures on the website so she could have a visual. She reassured me that she was NOT going to have her hair cut today (which wasn't even mentioned by me), which I told her was fine, but I was still cutting mine. We got there about 20 minutes or so early, but that turned out alright, our girl was ready for us. We got me up there as Katherine watched on. The measurement...the ponytailing...finally, the big cut! Katherine watched from the side with her fingers in her mouth. Next, I was taken over for a quick shampoo and conditioning, then back to trim up the stragglers. As I sat and had our girl trim, Katherine spoke very softly and said, "Mommy, I want to do my hair for Lots of Love, too." Over the course of a few minutes I talked to her about how her hair would be short, but it would grow back. She was sure. She told me that she wanted to give her hair to kids who don't have any. How could I argue with that? In my going with her, I had a glimmer of hope that she may choose to do the same thing someday, or at the very least understand the idea of giving things to others who are without, but I did not expect that she would be willing to give up her praised locks so quickly! I am grateful be to a part of a her life, she is amazing and I hope she keeps such confidence and selflessness. I will tell you a secret, I got a little choked up when she told me that she wanted to give her hair in such a beautiful and innocent way...anyone who knows her, knows this was her first 'real' haircut (not counting when she has taken her own scissors to her hair). I am in awe of the sweetness in my daughter...I have always known her sweet disposition, it's kinda hard to miss when you are someone's mom, but I am always pleased when I see her grow and nurture that part. I think I am out of words for now, much Love and Peace to all. XXOOXXOO