Monday, December 25, 2006

Hodie Christus Natus Est

Hodie Christus Natus Est
The little child lays now to rest
On that most holy wonderful night
The stars did not shine too bright
Nor was the angels song too great
To praise the mighty love that laid
God in a cattle manger

His virgin mother held him close
He was the one she loved the most
His human father made a bed
In a manger where cattle fed
Yet that stable cold and bare
Held the thing on earth most fair
God in a cattle manger

His plan of redemption has begun
The world will be saved through God the son
Now in the cradle one day on the cross
His sacrificial life of earthly loss
Would win for us the gates of paradise
But now He sleeps surrounded by snow and ice
God in a cattle manger

Now all is peace and calm
Not possible seems hurt or harm
As He lays so peaceful there
All around Him love and care
Shepherds and Kings came to the stable
They came to kneel before His cradle
God in a cattle manger

And even now we celebrate
Give gifts and parties to commemorate
The birth of a tiny helpless child
We give gifts and act more mild
Now let us bring gifts of love
To Him whose birth it is the day of
God in a cattle manger.


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

90 seconds, 5000 years.....

Check this out. It gives you a brief overview of the extent of various empires in the middle east, very interesting.

hat-tip: Lilting House

Sunday, December 10, 2006

A Roman Holiday Party

Yesterday we had a Christmas party with the Dead Language Latin Club, a homeschool club for Latin students. It was a costume party and I will call each person by the name of their character. (I by the way was Clio, the muse of History. After all I'm the history girl!) It was such a fun party even surpassing this event."Calliope", "Euterpe" and "Julius Caesar" came early to help finish preperations. We all got dressed in our Roman costumes and Calliope did my hair. Then came the other guests. First came Maximus, Marcus, and Octavious bearing a ham carved as a boar's head. The other guests soon began to stream in, Mecurius and Diana, a Caesar whose name switched several times, Caridoc and Osric (Picts complete with face paint) and Minerva 2 (my mom already bore that name). Then after a prayer, a song and several games of Mancala we began the feast. It looked and tasted amazing. After we were almost done our latecomers arrived, Venus 2 (Terri was also so named) and two ordinary Roman citizens. We took group pictures and had our Costume contest. Osric won the boy's contest, with Mecurius as runner-up. And Diana won the girls contest. Then came the skits, two teams acting out a story each from the Aenead (we do similar contests at all meetings, but not all from the Aenead.) My group had The Journey to the Underworld. Wherein Aeneas (acted by Octavious who conveniently had a sword) asks the cumean sibyl (played by me) how to visit his father, Anchises. She instructs him to take the golden bough (played by Calliope, frequently bowing). They must also bury their dead comrade ( Gus played this, BTW his assumed name for the party was Augustus, a soldier). In the underworld he meets the suicidal queen Dido (excellently portrayed by Diana) covered in orange paper flames, and his father Anchises (Marcus). All this was narrated by Osric who began the skit with the 20th centure fox trumoet call. Terri also appeared as the ship which carried Aeneas and co. to the sibyl, with a carven front of course. The other team had the story of the settling in Italy. But I don't know all the details. Can someone fill me in? After this we did the Pinata, filled with chocolate coins. Then it was four and time for the party to be over. Some had to leave, but a number stayed for a while after and chatted. Then finally everyone was gone and the party was over.... but we still have leftovers... (:

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

My 100th post!!!!!!

Yep, I've finally reached my 100th post! Now my first two posts, over a year ago, were about the gospel of Luke. So it is quite fitting that my hundreth post should be about the discussion we had the other night on....The Gospel of Luke!
We began with examining the theme often repeats, the theme of Be Not Afraid. We found many passages throughout the evening which followed this thread.
We also explored the greatly empahsized (but definitely not overdone) theme of forgiveness. We compared the two parables, The Prodigal Son and The Rich Man and Lazarus. The main difference between these two were the time of repentance. The prodigal son did sin but he repented before it was to late. He went home, apologized and was forgiven and joyfully received. But the Rich Man did not repent until after death, until it was too late so he was not forgiven.
We also discussed the Road to Emmaus, which has some great similarities in The Two Towers when Gandalf returns to Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli. We wondered why it was that the two disciples did not recognize him. We decided it was probably because their minds would already set to think that He was dead. So their mind set wouldn't let them see Him as He was.
I cannot remember what it was that we talked about after that but the conversation kept returning to the forgiveness theme, it was very interesting. Anyways we had a great discussion. If anyone who was present remembers more of later content please comment.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Moose Ears

This is Bernie, Gus and I. Terri is behind the camera. Oh and sorry about the inactivity over the past week or so.

Baby Hands

We've been gone for the past five days visiting family, enjoying my uncle's amazing cooking..... and taking pictures. The above is a photo of Frank's hands which I took while he was playing at the sink. I will post another in a different post shortly. I guess you'll be seeing my pictures as much as my artwork, hope you don't mind (:

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Thankful Thursdays

1. The Catholic faith.
2. My family and friends, I love chatting with them about, well.... anything and everything!
3. Books, reading time, authors like Chesterton, Tolkien, Lewis, Austen, Regina Doman, Hilda Van Stockum, Shakespeare etc. etc. etc. (Does that count as one?)
4. Blogger. The blogs have been so much fun, making new friends and keeping in touch with old. And learning things all the time, particularly about Chesterton.
5. Discussions with our homeschool friends.
6. Dr. Thursday's posts, particularly his Thursday posts on ACS.
7. The camera, I'm enjoying it more and more.
8. Being able to listen to stories almost anytime. Thanks to multiple audio players in our house.
9. Shakespeare parties. We get together with a bunch of friends, and read a Shakespeare play together, we have SOOOO much fun.
10. Irish dance class.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Can You Tell I Like Memes????

Here's another book meme that I thought looked interesting. I got it from Studeo, here goes:

1. How old were you when you learned to read and who taught you? I was 4 when I learned to read and my mom taught me.
2. Did you own any books as a child? If so, what’s the first one that you remember owning? If not, do you recall any of the first titles that you borrowed from the library? My mom and dad got Ten Little Babies Dress for me when I was less then a year old (of course I don't remember it from then, when I was a couple years older).
3. What's your oldest memory of a story? I'm not positive, probably either Good Morning In Maine or Miss Rumphius.
4. What’s the first book that you bought with your own money? Well I remember getting The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe when I was six but that wasn't with my own money, it was a prize for a summer reading program. I loved it, I read it in less then 24 hours!
5. Were you a re-reader as a child? If so, which book did you re-read most often?
Oh Yeah. I'm not sure exactly but I did reread These Happy Golden Years enough times that my mom had to make me read two books in between each time.
6. What’s the first adult book that captured your interest and how old were you when you read it? Most likely the book which is still my favorite The Lord of The Rings, which I first read when I was nine.
7. Are there children’s books that you passed by as a child that you have learned to love as an adult? Which ones? Well I'm not an adult and I don't think there really are any, at least none that come to mind.

Anybody want to do it??? Consider yourself tagged, and any ChesterTeens who see this post, you're tagged too!

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I Was Just Thinking.....

... How different would the story of The Lord of The Rings be if Faramir went to Rivendell instead of Boromir? I'm guessing this has been pondered before but I never thought of it before. Especially the breaking of the fellowship probably would have been drastically different because of Faramir's greater will power over the ring.

What do you think? Would it have been better or worse if Faramir had persuaded Boromir to stay in Minas Tirith?

Saturday, November 11, 2006

I Love the Camera!

I take pictures whenever I can, and I love sunbursts. ( In case you didn't figure that out already:).

Friday, November 10, 2006


Really if you have any time at all go and read this. It is well worth your time. It had me laughing out loud and I am still giggling! But I can't make this post to long, you have enough to read as it is. She is a really good storyteller!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I Knew It All Along!

When I was four I insisted that the state where we live (Wisconsin) was Misconsin. And I continued in my firm belief that all the people on the radios and TVs were wrong until I learned how to read (I was around five). So today just now I was looking in the Kids Almanac to find a list of states that would help me chronicle the voting results tonight. So anyways each state has a little bit about the name. In Wisconisin's I found that Wisconsin used to be spelled Mesconsing!
So I was right after all!!!!! (-;

Monday, November 06, 2006

Another finding of an old tub

It is a story I wrote when I was, judging by the handwriting and spelling, quite young. Oh and sorry about the strange placing of the pictures, Blogger doesn't work to well with lots of images. I hope you can figure out the order. So there is the story. And in case you can't read that it says:
Mary and the Baker
Mary was very Hungre and wanted bread from the baker wich was ten sents and Mary had 2 dollers so she went to the baker and said pleaise giv me three fresh lovse of French Bread a Fyoo minets later he brange Mary a hot box smeling of hot french bread. Hoo is that for he askt!it`s for me said Mary. Well here you are and 5 lovse in all like you said and they lived happily ever after!

That's the spelling I used then I hope you can understand it. BTW the end page is not shown here, it didn't fit, but you heard what it said!

More pictures

Here are two more!

BTW, I did not draw Holy Hill (or the other one)!

Going through boxes..

... sometimes reveals some pretty cool stuff, like some pictures tucked into an old book from a rummage sale that just yesterday came to light. I will post them one, maybe two at a time, to make them easier for viewing, Enjoy!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Archive Browsing

I was browsing through the archives of Small Pax (which is a lot of fun by the way, try it sometime) and I found this playing card website. It is soooooo cool. The quote "There is no such thing as an unintersting subject, the only thing that can exist is an uninterested person" has been proving itself to me a great deal.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Stat Counter

I recently got a stat counter on my blog (see sidebar) one of my favorite features is the "recent visitor map." It showes you a map of where the recent visitors are from, how they found your blog and several other more or less interesting facts. Using this feature I found that somebody who found my blog through this post lives in Southern Kenya!!!!!!!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Beauty and the Beast, and Other Fairy Tales

A few months ago my dad read Beauty and the Beast from the Blue Fairy Book outloud to us. And since then I have decided that Beauty and the Beast is one of, if not my favorite, fairy tale. The reason is this: Beauty and the Beast have a reason to fall in love. In the typical fairy tale the hero and heroine fall in love seemingly on the spur of the moment or because they like the other's looks. Well I suppose Beauty does't have the problem of falling in love because of the Beast's looks, although he might have that temptation. But anyways, Beauty and the Beast have long talks every night and they get to know each other before they fall in love. This is true to a certain extent of Snow White and Rose Red as well. But in that one they play with the Bear more then have talks with him. By the way if you're not familiar with Snow White and Rose Red you can read it here. If you're not familiar with Beauty and the Beast then I suggest you go to the library in the near future.
So anyways any thoughts on this???? Any amendments to what I said??????

Sunday, October 29, 2006

More on the Chocolate Cake Farm

So far it appears that Southern Kenya is the best location for a chocolate cake farm. Although that is the only response as to location I have received, several people have posted about it.

Dr. Thursday connected it up to Chesterton in an interesting post on his blogg. Gus posts on the process of discovering that it was Kenya on the Map Guys. My mom posts more about it here and Dr. Thursday tops it off with a great poem on the subject.

Update: More on this subject from The Lilting House! Please read this post too, it's really cool.

There really is no such thing as an uninteresting subject.

Baby Chicks

We have been going through old boxes one of which had a ton of old photos in it including the one you see on the side. That was taken at one of our first trips to Old World Wisconsin in 1998 where I became enthralled with the baby chicks they happened to have there at the time. It was really, really cool.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Dinner Dialogue

During dinner Frank was being absolutely hilarious. I will record here very roughly what happened:

My first remark was on the fact that he called his Cranberry Juice, which he had just been asking for, was yucky. That was understandable however when you take into account that this was after he had been told he had to drink his juice before he got shake.

Me: You're silly
Frank: oo silly ( you're silly)
Me: You're cute
Frank: oo tute (you're cute)
Dad: You're brilliant
(Frank is silent)
Me: You're smart
Frank: oo tute
(enormous laughter from everyone)
Mom: Does Ria have a hat?
Frank: Right!
Mom: Does mommy have a hat?
Frank: No!
Mom: Does daddy have a hat?
Frank: No!
Mom: Does Gus have a head?
Frank: No!
(more enormous amounts of laughter from everyone)

Over the course of the rest of dinnertime we got him to say that several other people didn't have heads, and that Charlotte (our dog) doesn't have a brain, with which I quite agree. (:

Note: for more Frank Funnies see Frankly Speaking at Studeo.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

There is no such thing as an uninteresting subject....

Even Chocolate Cake can provide a interesting subject as we found out today. Our dessert after dinner was chocolate cake and we started to discuss how difficult it would be to make chocolate cake without buying anything. Our recipe for chocolate cake needs; white sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, eggs, milk, vegetable oil, vanilla and hot water.

Cocoa beans and sugar cane grow in similar climates, wheat can grow in many places. We are not sure where you can get baking powder and baking soda but if anyone else knows please let me know. Salt you can get from the sea, for eggs you need a chicken and for milk a cow is necessary. You need a vegetable and a press for vegetable oil, vanilla beans grow in warm climates just like cocoa beans and sugar cane, and water is likely to be in any place where people live.

Okay so you have the backround, now I have a challenge for you. Find a place, or several places where you could have a farm that produces all of these things. Use books, internet, whatever and have fun. Please comment back and tell me what you found.

I sure hope you don't mind seeing my artwork

Because it seems you have been and are going to see a lot of it on this blog. Anyways here's some more of my drawings.
The bottom one is supposed to be a scene from The Sleeping Beauty where the prince is starting to open the door (I had to find something to draw that had rays of light in it).
The first one is part of a famous picture of Pope John Paul the great when he was younger on one of his kayaking trips with his students. I drew it from a book of the life of JPII that we have, that includes LOTS of pictures.
So any suggestions for future drawings? If you have some please tell me.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

New Vocabulary Word

Speaking of black and white, that is what chiaroscuro means.
1. the distribution of light and shade in a picture.
2. Painting. the use of deep variations in and subtle gradations of light and shade, esp. to enhance the delineation of character and for general dramatic effect: Rembrandt is a master of chiaroscuro.
3. a woodcut print in which the colors are produced by the use of different blocks with different colors.
4.a sketch in light and shade.

We learned this term in art class, and then a few days later I realized that it was used to describe a scene in the Man Who Was Thursday.
Have you ever noticed how new words seem to come up in totally random places soon after you learn them?
So anyways our Great Vocabulary project is definitely continuing to grow!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


My mom tagged me for the ten random facts meme, so here goes:
1. I LOVE reading, especially Chesterton, Tolkien, Lewis, Jane Austen and Regina Doman.
2. I've made several names for things that have stuck: our mudroom is now the cloakroom, a certain type of baby clothes is "kick-arounders" and swim suits are "dim duits"(that was when I was really little).
3. I have been doing Irish Dancing for five years now and love it.
4. I love memorizing poetry, I'm currently working on The Ballad of the White Horse and Lepanto both by G.K. Chesterton.
5. I was planning to go to ChesterCon this year, but Chicken Pox sadly prevented me from going.
6. My favorite branch of Science is Geology, particularly Archeology. I have always been interested by fossils, ruins and the like.
7. Although I don't much like math, I do like long division.
8. I just joined "The Dead Language Latin Club" after 4 or 5 years of Latin, and had a ton of fun at the first meeting. Perhaps I will post on it in future.
9. My favorite saints when I was little were St. Dominic of the Rosary and Saint Therese the Little Flower. (I still really like them of course:)
10. I began the "Great Vocabulary Project" by writing down a list of most of the great big words they spell in Akeelah and the Bee. Some of my favorites: prestidigitation, Merovingian, bioluminescent, Scherezadian (I'm not sure of the spelling on that one) logorrhea.
And I will tag: GilbertGirl, mysticalrose_84, Jenny, electroblogster and The Map Guy

Sunday, October 22, 2006

My First Triolet...

I have finally written a triolet, I must give credit to Gus for coming up with the great first line. So without further ado, drumroll please...... my first triolet:

Methinks me stinks at poetry
And soon you will think so too
As I continue my bad poem merrily
Methinks me stinks at poetry
You don't have to read this catastrophe
You have much better things to do
Methinks me stinks at poetry
And soon you will think so too.

And there you have it! What do you think?

Thursday, October 19, 2006

MORE artwork

I have been drawing quite a bit recently, inspired by my cousins amazing picture. Although mine aren't nearly as good as hers, they were fun to draw. (Amazing what you can do with a mechanical pencil.)
The top one is of Pope John Paul the Great, drawn from the cover of a book.
The next one is the annunciation.
Below that is a picture of a baptism in the catacombs.
And the last is a scene from a book I really like called The Reb and the Redcoats.

So what should I work on??? I know these pictures are far from perfect what should I have done differently?

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Knute Rockne All American

We just watched Knute Rockne All American with Ronald Reagan. It was really good. It is about a Norwegian immigrant, Knute Rockne who ends up going to Notre Dame, at the age of 25. He played on the football team and introduces the forward pass (don't ask me how it works) and wins the game against a hard team. After college he becomes Notre Dame's football coach and this movie chronicles his success, and once in a while failures. Near the beggining of his career when he has less then perfect team he is hoping, and praying, for a really good player. A few days later on the field a young man catches a stray football and kicks it higher then anyone on the team can. He is George Gip (played by the young Ronald Reagan) and seems to have very little interest in football. None-the-less Knute persuades him to don a uniform and for the next few years he is the star player for the football team. But he is not vain or proud and spends time at his coach's house rather then getting his picture taken in the newspaper. But I can't spoil the movie for you if you haven't seen it.

After years of coaching this story comes to an abrupt end, but I can't say how, you'll simply have to watch the movie and see for yourself.

My favorite parts were:
-When the "Gipper" is at Knute's house.
-Coming back to Notre Dame after a game with 'the army'.
-The second half of a game that wasn't going so well, especially the part in the locker room.
-The courtroom scene

To find out why they were my favorite parts, take my previous advice and watch this movie.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

The Importance of Watching Earnest

Yesterday I saw the old version of "The Importance of Being Earnest." It is absolutely hysterical!

The scene rises on two friends conversing. The elder, whose name appeares to be Ernest is talking about how he wishes to marry Gwendolyne, the other gentlmen, Algernon's, cousin. This conversation leads by means of a ciggarette lighter to the subject of both men's alter egos. "Ernest" is not really Ernest but Jack. In the country he goes by his real name of Jack but if a wish to go to town comes upon him he can simply say that his wild and wicked younger brother, Ernest has gotten into one of his scrapes and he must go to town. And Algernon has a "friend" whose name is slipping my mind, who has very bad health and he is constantly being called to the country to be with him.

The pair of gentlemen go to visit Algernon's aunt and her daughter Gwendolyne. While the ladies mother is absent Ernest, or perhaps we should call him Jack, somehow manages to propose to Gwendolyne and is warmly accepted by her but coldly refused by her mother who happens upon this love scene. Both Gwendolyne and Jack are deeply saddened by this news, but Gwendolyne recieves from her lover his country address in hopes that she could visit him. Unknown to both of them however is that Jack's clever friend, Algernon, has also managed to get the address. He uses his knowledge to masquerade as Jack's younger brother Ernest, and uses his temporary status to propose to Jack's charming ward, Cecily. All this leads to one of the funniest (if a bit far-fetched) climaxes I have ever seen.

My brief summary excludes almost all of the dialouge which is the funniest part of the movie. So you'll just have to watch it to hear it. And if you like comedy it will most likely be a very enjoyable experience.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Nature Walk

We went on a nature walk, and we brought the digital camera so I took about 60 photos. The photo you see above is one of my favorite shots from today (Unfortunatly it is a little blurry).

P.S. I am planning a post on The Phantom Tollbooth but it may take a little while. But now that I come to think of it maybe I should post that on ChesterTeens, hmmm should I?

Friday, October 06, 2006

Great Post on ACS blog

PLEASE read this, it so interesting. And it mentions the Phantom Tollbooth, which I love and which we had a discussion on about an hour ago, which I will probably be posting on soon. And of course anything on, and partly by Chesterton is very unlikely to be boring.

So anyways take a little time and read that post, it is well worth your time.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

More Computer Art

Try this, it's fun!
Hat-tip: Studeo

Sunday, October 01, 2006

John Bosco Youth Day, 'Post Lunch'

After lunch we had half an hour of MORE music and games, which was followed by a talk by Susan Conroy. In 1986 she spent the summer in Calcutta to work with Mother Teresa. She told us about life in Calcutta, at night in her room her floor would be covered with huge cockroaches, the walls were lined with lizards, the water was filthy, the meat was filthy, but it was still a wonderful experience. She got to work very closely with Mother Teresa and Mother Teresa's joy was so contagious that everyone working with her was joyful too. She also got to meet Pope John Paul the Great. It happened like this.

JPII visited Calcutta the same year she did, but she missed him by a matter of weeks. Years later, she was in Rome for when the Holy Father made St. Therese, the Little Flower, a Doctor of the Church. She had translated a book on The Little Flower and was hoping to give her autographed copy to the Holy Father. After the ceremony there was a general audience, but it only fit 7000 people, and there were a great many more than 7000 there for the ceremony, so you had to have a ticket, but she didn't have one. So she and a Belgian priest she was traveling with were standing outside, talking and praying this prayer:

Little Flower
Show your power
In this hour.

And while they were praying, someone came up to them and gave them tickets for the General Audience, and not only were they tickets, they were front row tickets. Out of 7000 people only the people in the front row get to go up and meet the Holy Father. So she got to go up and meet him, and kiss his hand. And she was very lucky, she was with a very talkative priest who started talking to the Pope, so she got to stay there, in his presence. And then the priest said to the Pope, I have written a book about the Little Flower and she (Susan Conroy) has translated it. So she showed him the book and he said "I have read this." So they both gave him autographed copies.

This talk was followed by a short talk by a youth minister, a video on the Wisconsin Youth Rally and two teens told us about how much fun it was. Then we had a half-hour break and a short talk by Fr. Stan and another short talk by Martin Doman on prayer. Next we had adoration. It was so cool, we sang the refrain of O Come All Ye Faithful, the same tune with different words, O Salutaris Hostia, Tantum Ergo and Holy God We Praise Thy Name, all without instruments; 2000 people singing songs that were already beautiful. It was the coolest feeling.

Next came Mass, said by Archbishop Dolan. He gives such great sermons. He started by talking about how there are many greatest evils in the world, but basically sin is the greatest evil in the world. And then he reminded us of some saints who died rather than sin, St. Cecilia, St. Agnes, St. Lawrence, St. Maria Goretti and St. Dominic Savio, who wasn't killed for the faith but whose motto was "Death rather than sin."

Before Mass was quite over, Fr. Don thanked everybody involved and after each everyone cheered. When he thanked the speakers, it took about 10 seconds for everyone to stand up to give a standing ovation, when he thanked the Archibishop it took about 5 seconds for everyone to stand up and when he thanked Our Lord Jesus Christ, everyone stood up right away.
And to top off the day after recieving communion from the Archibishop, we got to go and say hi to him after Mass.
It was such an awesome day, and I certainly plan to be there next year.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

John Bosco Youth Day, 'Ante Lunch'

Today was John Bosco Youth Day!!!! It was AWESOME!!!!!! The day started with some music from Martin Doman. Then after a brief formal welcome, we had more music and games: Simon says and Consequences. That was followed by a talk by Fr. Stan Fortuna. It was really cool, his talk was about, well many different things. It was mainly about how so many people are bored in Mass and about the different meanings of the word bored (with some help from "Brother Webster"), which was much more interesting than it sounds. But he branched off in several places and so it was a really cool talk.

Next came some more music from Martin Doman. Some of it was just for fun, but some of his music was actually pretty neat, on the other hand almost any song can be made to fit that description, when sung by 2000 people. Do you know that feeling??? when so many people are singing together and I don't know how to describe it but it is awesome.

It was followed by a brief confession talk, which in turn was followed by a even briefer confession skit. Next was a Stations of the Cross presentation in the form of a video. Holy Hill has a set of outdoor, lifesize Stations of the Cross, so the video (made by my uncle) took us through the stations, with meditations read by the excellent voice of my grandfather. Next came more music and two brief talks, one by a nun and one by a seminarian. Since this post is already quite long I won't go into their talks in detail, but I just wanted to share something that the nun told us. She told us about one time when she was walking in a garden or some such and she looked at one leaf, and was startled by the brightness of it, she looked again and saw it was simply a dew drop, but the sun shone on it and made it glow like the sun, and that it was we should be, we should be the dew, reflecting the radiance of God.
Next was lunch and the talks following it which I will cover in my next post.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

I'm Pro-Life!

(I've been learning the wide possiblities of Paint Shop Pro, and thoroughly enjoying it.)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Tagged AGAIN!!!!!!!

The Map Guy started a geography meme and he tagged me.

1. A Place You've Visited and Your Favorite Thing there
Vicksburg, and the battlefield tour. It was a really cool tour (even though we didn't finish it being cramped for time) which included a tour of one of the Ironclads, The Cairo.

2. A Country You'd Like to Visit and Why
The british Isles. I know this isn't just one country but on a trip you would almost certainly go to both Ireland and England. Anyways I have dozens of reasons to visit these places, a big reason would be to visit so many historical sites. And of course the scenery is beautiful.

3. A Place From History You'd Like to Visit and Why
American Revolution. I don't have a specific reason, I just think it would be an interesting time. (I do have a lot of other times I would like to visit.)
4. A Place You Know a Lot About
5. A Place You'd Like to Learn More About
6. A Fictional Place You'd Like to Visit
Middle Earth. Sorry Gus I know you did the same thing, but I would of have done it regardless.

Tag five people: GilbertGirl, Jenny, Dr. Thursday, Monkey and mystical_rose_84

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Tagged again

This time for the five things meme by Margaret:

Five things in our freezer:
1. a tub of mint chocolate chip ice cream
2. a tub of blackberry frozen custard (We usually don't have so much ice cream in our freezer)
3. ice cubes
4. frozen veggies
5. two boxes of waffles

Five things in my closet
1. Hardshoes (for irish dance)
2. Many seldom used scrapbooking materials
3. clothes
4. a spare purse
5. numerous boxes for storing assorted junk

Five things in my car
Since I don't have a car, I'll just say our car
1. five rows of seats
2. a broken tape/cd player
3. an old video tape player
4. a road atlas
5. and a wild conglomeration of other items

Five interesting things in my backpack
The only backpack I use on a regular basis probably doesn't have five things in it, and they ceratinly aren't interesting, so I will use the typical backpack for staying overnight with friends
1. at least two books
2. my iPOD
3. a movie
4. a Su Doku book
5. at least five pens/pencils

Five people I tag
1. Jenny
2. The Map Guy
3. mystical rose 84
4. monkey
5. coyote

Sunday, September 17, 2006

My perfect major is...

... journalism, at least according to the 'What is you Perfect major?' quiz, even though dance came out equal. Here are my complete results:

You are an aspiring journalist, and you should major in journalism! Like me, you are passionate about writing and expressing yourself, and you want the world to understand your beliefs through writing.


Saturday, September 16, 2006

Wash for Life

Today is the Wash for Life. In case you haven't heard about it, youth goups across the country are holding car washes today to benifit local pregnecy care centers.
Good Luck to everyone involved!!!!!!! (I wish I was, hopefully there'll be another next year).

Friday, September 15, 2006

A Kate Story

Last night Kate found a belt (one that you tie rather than buckle) that I had made, and a similar dialouge to this followed:

Kate: What's that?
Me: A belt (and I modeled it for her)
Kate: (Giggling) that's a funny belt.
Me: (slightly offended that my handiwork was not satisfactory) No it isn't, here I'll show you (I produced a another of the same style)
Kate: Well the ones that God makes look different.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Picture Summer Toes

This series might take longer than I thought, but anyways here are my winners from picture summer toes. I chose two winners and two runners up this time, There were too many good pictures to choose less:

Winner 1: Toes Aglow
Winner 2: Summertime
Runner-Up 1: tahoe.feet
Runner-UP 2: Summer Toes

And there you have that set. I'm sorry I don't have why I like them but I'm trying not to take to long posting this.

Friday, September 08, 2006

1 year ago today....

..... this blog was created. Unfortunatly I don't have a great post prepared like Dr. Thursday did for his blogg's anniversary. ( And please do read his post, it is really cool)
I have had a wonderful time on the blogosphere, meeting people, mostly Chestertonians who got me more and more interested in Chesterton. One of the most fun thing about blogs (second to meeting people) is getting comments. Here are some of my favorite that I got on this blog:

from Dr. Thursday on my Languages post:

I have completely forgotten to check your blogg - I
forgot all about it! And what a good posting, too. Well, it is still here and I
can comment on it.First, I think it is good for you to study even a made-up
language. Did you know that I have studied perhaps five or more made-up
languages? They are the ones I use(or have used) to program computers! And even
more fun - like Tolkien, I have studied the "inner workings" of how languages
are put together - at least those computer languages! But this is part of what
one must learn in order to study Language - I mean the "science of words" which
is called "philology" (that is what Tolkien studied and taught). That is
different from studying Languages, which is what you indicate by your list.Here
is the list I would like to study, and why:
1. Latin (to read the Aeneid, and the Vulgate
2. Greek (to read Homer, and the New Testament in its
most ancient form available)
3. Hebrew (to read the Old Testament, but especially
the Psalms)
4. Italian (to read Dante)
But these are VAST projects, and at present I do not
expect to go very far at all. At least I can read tiny bits of the first two -
much more Latin than Greek. But someday I will have to spend some time to learn
the Hebrew letters...If I have some time, perhaps I will get to tell a little
about how "language" works over on my blogg. I already started to hint about it
when I wrote about "chirality" - did you read that? I will see what I can

I liked this set of comments on my ChesterTeens post too (I left mine out cause it was boring)

From Sheila:
I am very sad. I just turned 20. So I guess it's no use begging to be let into
ChesterTeens?Well, I got a link on the sidebar at least. I'm not sure how you
heard of me, but I feel special anyway, like some kind of celebrity --
especially after Regina Doman and Dr. Thursday and before the Holy Whapping.

From Dr. Thursday:
Well, Sheila, this is the perfect time for this quote:
"Being a child is not a disease. Even remaining a child is not a disease;
don't you sometimes wish we could all remain children?"[GKC Four Faultless
Felons (Dover) 39]
And I would have also begged to be admitted but I stopped being 19 a little
while ago. Hee hee.

And yet another from Dr. Thursday on my Co-op adventures post

This is excellent! I will forward this idea to the Faculty for Chesterton
University. There is no reason that college kids can't be having just as much
fun. The idea could be readily extended to other disciplines - definitely a way
of getting more laughter into one's education!

So that's about it, thanks to everyone who reads this blog for commenting and making my first year of bloggiong so enjoyable, I look forward to more.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

I love this quote

School's starting here and I thought this quote was appropriate:

Daybreak is a never ending glory, getting out of bed is a never ending nuisance.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Picture This

We have been following these flickr contests, picture location, picture summer toes, picture summer togetherness and picture anything summer . The winners are being announced here, but we decided it would be fun to pick our favorites. I have only picked the winners for one so I will post the others later on.

For Picture Location:
Winner: "Biscuit in Flowers" I love the backround of the mountains, and a cute baby adds to any picture.
Runner-up 1"Ocean Evening" The sun on the water is awesome and the silhouette is is great too.
Runner-up 2"Pondering" The waves and moss in this picture really caught my eye.

My mom picked her favorites. Here they are:


Winner:"Daddy's boy"
Runner-up 1:"Summer Siblings"
Runner-up 2:"Country Cousins"

Summer Toes

Winner: Daddy's flip-flop
Runner-up 1: Toes Aglow
Runner-up 2: Baby with string

Summer Location

Winner: Pier at Sunset
Postcard Sunset
Martha's Vineyard

Anything Summer

Jumping In
Boy on the Beach

Well that's all for now, I will be posing my other favorites as soon as I figure out which they are.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Kitty Cat?

Frank and I were playing one of his favorite games (other than "dord bites", sword fights, with his plastic sword) memory cards. In the set we were using there is a picture of a dog with VERY long hair. I asked Frank what it was. Titty tat!! (Kitty cat) was his first guess. I said no. Then he figured it out, Doggy cat!!!!!!!!!

Thursday, August 24, 2006


I just found this site which has dozens of the languages which Tolkien created. It looks really cool.
Hat-tip Enchiridion

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

More from our fridge

We have a bit more than usual since our friends the Henebrys stayed over last night(whose visit I will probably post on in not to long) and used our set too. Here is what is on our fridge:

this idle dinosaur decieveth a loathsome foul owl thus that butterfly bestowed a peaceful silent color ere an envyous flower glowed

a mortal lover measure love like

speak lightly of thy farewell

the funny drunkard was a trifle saucy

the wicked woman whispered which spot she tempt villain to forswear growing perilous pink ghostly garden

mischance methinks alas I am merry

mud songs fly lightlywith pigs playing in rain

discontent doth dream down dark dire drunk dog

alas I have love but I shall never have my maiden hence I will yield to melancholy and death

a man dost give good fortune from out of heart

oft nest mercy in thine breast

ne'er torment slander or curse lest she dream

Monday, August 14, 2006

Irish Dancing Homeschoolers on NBC

There is a show on NBC called America's Got Talent. It's a contest where the audience votes for the winner and the finals are Wedensday at 8/7 central. And one of the finalist groups are friends of my cousins; they will be performing Irish Dancing, to see a video go here. They're in round 4, look for Celtic Spring.
I'm looking forward to watching it.
Update: Here is another longer video of them including what the judges thought of their performance, it's very interesting. They're an awesome family.

An Amazing Occurence

Yesterday an amazing thing happened, I got a word verification that I could actually pronounce!!!!!!!It was wiwax. Isn't that amazing? (:

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

First a toad, now a bird.

Yep we found a bird (we think it's a robin) in our yard today. We think he fell out of a tree and so he was stunned for a while, but he perked up and has been carried around in a nest (which we found a couple days ago after a storm) by Terri and Bernie. I decided to try to draw the little creature while he was asleep. Here is the result.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Oh Dear, I Got Tagged....

... for the book meme, by my mom.

So here's my list:

1. One book that changed your life.

The Shadow of the Bear By Regina Doman. The reason being it got me interested in Chesterton.

2. One book that you’ve read more than once.

The Lord of the Rings By J.R.R.Tolkien

3. One book you’d want on a desert island.

The Collected Works of Chesterton ,Volume One (It has both Heretics and Orthodoxy)

4. One book that made you laugh.

Pride and Predjudice By Jane Austen

5.One book that made you cry.

A Tale of Two Cities By Charles Dickens

6. One book that you wish had been written.

J.R.R. Tolkien By G.K.Chesterton

7. One book that you wish had never been written.

His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman

8. One book you’re currently reading.

Jane Eyre By Charlotte Brontes. I started this months ago and still
haven't gotten back to it. (Sorry GilbertGirl:)

9. One book you’ve been meaning to read.

Heretics By G.K.Chesterton

And I will tag Monkey, Coyote, Jenny and The Map Guy.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Fun with Magnetic Poetry

We have two sets, the basic set and the Shakespeare set. Although we don't really use them for poetry it is so much fun to make up crazy sentances.
Here is what is currently on our fridge:

farewell vile codpiece death
methinks I would poison thee
perchance I will bestow a butterfly
of loathsome garden to your lordship
with vehemence and torments

I like that silly melancholy glow

be merry fairy owls
for discontent doth belch

pig out good fortune
I grow silent lovely and lazy

thence a peasant must make some joyfull jest

his hat hast heart hence her haste

the whispering winter went walking wantonly

he flew the happy foul fat fed perilous flower.

I think my favorite is 'his hat', I like them all though.

UPDATE:I corrected some typos and missing words.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Charles Carroll and National Treasure

I read a book today called Charles Carroll and the American Revolution. It was really good. But the problem was, the more I read, the more I got annoyed with National Treasure.
I really like National Treasure, it has much of the subtle humor that I love and it has an interesting story. But it would be much better if they got their history right.
Now Charles Carroll was a practicing Catholic, in fact he was the only Catholic to sign the Declaration of Independence. But National Treasure proclaims that Charles Carroll was a Free Mason, which is an impossible mix with a practicing Catholic like him. They also claim that The Knights Templar were the founders of the Free Masons. Now it is possible that this is true but I highly doubt it. From what I've heard saying that the Knights Templar were Free Masons has as much founding as calling Charles Carroll a Free Mason, and after making the mistake about him I am less inclined to believe any other historical "facts" in that movie. All the same you can still enjoy National Treasure. And I will but I don't think I can quite as much now I know about Charles Carroll, and the mistakes they made about him.

Now I have to share some of my favorite stories from this book:

One of my favorite parts is the same as Gilbert Girl's (who read the book before me). A tory as those supportive of England were called, wrote an artice in the Annapolis newspaper which consisted in a disscusion between two imaginary characters, First Citizen and Second Citizen. The First represents the Patriots and the Second the Tories. To the second he gave all the good arguments and he made the first sound like a fool. This made all the Maryland tories very happy, and their satisfaction lasted about two weeks. Then the blow fell, Charles Carroll, writing as simply, First Citizen, replied with another more brilliant article and this time all the good arguments were on the other side. Several more tries were made by the tory, Daniel Dulany, but all were futile, Charles Carroll, and with him the patriots, had won!

When he was an elderly man Charles Carroll, someone visited him (not that this is uncommon, he had many visitors in his later years) and later said that he was the best laugher in America, and Charles Carroll said that he prefered that title to any other he had ever recieved, including that of Signer of the Declaration of Independence!

Blog the Frog

Gus was working on an essay for the National Geographic Kids contest and he had only written one sentance and I had to try my hand at it. Here are the results of this venture:

Once upon a time, no, no, no that's not right it was only yesterday, my mom was mowing the lawn. After sometime inside we were called out to witness a pheneomon(at least it was for our yard), a frog, or perhaps a toad. We still haven't agreed which. My mom had ceased her work at the sight of this jumping being, and my brother was asked to remove this slimy creature from the premises. He did so and we transported it to my sister's garden, and proceeded to moisten the area with the hose. Although it was "lost" several times it was found again and this morning we tested his swimming ability in our kiddie pool. He is a pro. He delighted us all with his swimming, diving, floating and eating ability. My dad put a log in for this creature to recline upon, and this frog/toad delighted in it and the logs former inhabitants, numerous potato bugs. We named it blog after, well, what I'm using now.

Friday, July 21, 2006

The King and the Child

Sheila recently posted a poem by Eugene Field which I really liked and I knew another poem which I thought which was also by her. Turns out it is by Eugene Hall but it is still a really cool poem so here goes.

The sunlight shone on the walls of stone
And towers subline and tall:
King Alfred sat upon his throne
Within his council hall.

And glancing o'er the splendid throng
With grave and solemn face,
To where his noble vassals stood,
He saw a vacant place

"Where is the Earl of Holderness?"
With anxious look he said.
"Als, O King" a courtier cried,
"The noble Earl is dead"

Before the monarch could express
The sorrow that he felt,
A soldier with a war- worn face
Approached the throne and knelt.

"My sword," he said, "has ever been,
O King! at thy command,
And many a proud and haughty Dane
Had fallen by my hand.

"I've fought beside thee in the field,
And 'neath the greenwood tree;
It is but fair for thee to give
Yon vacant place to me."

"It is not just," a statesman cried,
"This soldiers prayer to hear,
My wisdom has done more for thee
Than either sword or spear.

'The victories of the council hall
Have made thee more renown
Than all the triumphs of the field
Have given to the crown.

"My name is known in every land,
My talents have been thine;
Bestow this Earldom, then, on me,
For it is justly mine."

Yet while before the monarch's throne
These men contending stood,
A woman crossed the floor who wore
The weeds of widowhood.

And slowly to King Alfred's feet
A fair-haired boy she led-
"O King! this is the rightful heir
Of Holderness" she said.

"Helpless he comes to claim his own,
Let no man do him wrong,
For he is week and fatherless,
And thou art just and strong."

"What strenght of power," the statesman cried,
"Could such a judgment bring?
Can such a feeble child as this
Do aught for thee O King,

"When thou hast need of brawny arms
To draw thy deadly bows,
When thou art wanting crafty men
To crush thy mortal foes?"

With earnest voice the fair young boy
Replied: "I cannot fight,
But I can pray to God O King!
And Heaven can give thee might!"

The King bent down and kissed the child;
The courtiers turned away
"The heritage is thine," he said,
"Let none thy right gainsay.

"Our swords may cleave the casques of men,
Our blood may stain the sod,
But what are human strenght and power
Without the help of God?"

Sunday, July 09, 2006

My First Attempt at a Clerihew

I have been trying to figure out a Clerihew. This is my first completed one (well sort of complete, I'm sure it could be made much better.)

There's a story about the unfortunate family Baudelaire
There's Violet who would always tie up her hair
Then Klaus who was always wearing glasses
And Sunny who had sharper teeth than most young lasses.

One Clerihew done. Now I have to write a Triolet for the contest at Enchiridion before the deadline....
Oh and work on making my Clerihews better (:

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Where I'm From

I am from dancing shoes and rollerblades, from books and the smell of Ivory soap.

I am from San Diego apartments, a small 19th century farmhouse and a 70s subdivision.

I am from Hyacinths and Lupines, from the farmland and faraway mountains.

I am from long road trips to visit cousins and reading in the bathroom, from "Irish outlaws" and "people from the hedge".

I am from noisy dinners, house projects and getting lost in books.

From "everyone get in the car" and "whoever's not here say your name"

I am from Catholicism, from the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

I'm from Milwaukee and San Diego; from Belgium, Ireland and Portugal, from bratwurst and cheese; spaghetti and sourdough bread.

From crutches, a broken wrist and driving to the Emergency Room with a stick in my leg.

I am from slideshows on a bed sheet with an old projector, dozens of computer files, many scrapook attempts, photo albums and seldom looked at baby books.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006


.... ChesterTeens!!!!!!!!!, An Unofficial Society for Teenage Chesterton Fanatics.
This is my new blog, well not just mine it is a group blog which is rapidly attaining more and more teenage chestertonians including adriana, now known as Gilbert Girl, who you may remember as one of my friends who sometimes posted on this blog and her sister Margaret both of whom started their own blogs as well as working on ChesterTeens.
I hope you check it out sometime, it is going to be a lot of fun.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

My Summer Reading List

So many bloggers have been posting there summer reading lists I thought it was about time to follow suit and post mine. Although I don't think I will get close to finishing it here is my list......

Pride and Predjudice By Jane Austen
Jane Eyre By Charlotte Bronte
Ivanhoe By Sir Walter Scott
The Man Who Was Thursday By G.K. Chesterton
Heretics By G.K. Chesterton
A Tale of Two Cities (audio) By Charles Dickens
Sherlock Holmes By Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
memorize one of Shakespeare's sonnets
Leave it to Psmith By P.G. Wodehouse
Red Hugh: Prince of Donegal By Robert T. Reilly
Big Johns Secret By Eleanor M. Jewett
The Merchants Mark By Cynthia Harnett
The Cargo of the Madelena By Cynthia Harnett
Presenting Miss Jane Austen By May Lamberton-Becker
The Strange Intruder By Arthur Catherall
Becky Landers, Frontier Warrior By Constance Lindsay Skinner
The Scarlet Pimpernel By Baroness Orczy (Don't worry I have listened to the audio book, I just haven't read the book yet)

....... pretty ambitious huh?

That's my main list but there are also these which I will read as soon as I can get my hands on them (they haven't come out yet)

John Paul 2 High By Christian M. Frank
Waking Rose By Regina Doman
A Series of Unfortunate Events: Book 13 By Lemony Snicket
Harry Potter: Book 7 By J.K. Rowling

I might also reread some of my favorites:

The Lord of the Rings By J.R.R. Tolkien
The Shadow of the Bear By Regina Doman
Black As Night By Regina Doman
The Chronicles of Narnia By C.S. Lewis

Well there you have my lists, at the end of the summer I will post how many I actually read, I bet it will be a lot shorter list.

I finished Pride and Predjudice and my mom finished reading The Man Who Was Thursday outloud to us, these were both great, I hope my whole list will prove as enjoyable.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The Minnesota Conference- Post 2- Saturday

I'm back, posting on ( as our friends on The Shrine of the Holy Whapping would say) The 8th Annual Denim Skirt Invitational (isn't that a great name? I love it)
Anyways on saturday we had to get up at six for 7:15 Mass after staying up till midnight. But it was well worth the effort, Mass was beautiful. The chapel on campus is just gorgeous, and the music especially at Communion, and of course the atmosphere with so many homeschoolers all these thing made such a neat Mass, I loved it. At Communion first they sang this song that was really neat, I think of one of the choir had actually written it. Then they sang a song that I really like called Holy is His Name, and they sang it really well, it was amazing.
Then it was on to the vendor area. My friend,Liz, impressed everyone within hearing range with her violin skills, delighting us with classical and irish, it was awesome.
My mom gave two talks and then it was time to while away the hours until dinner with some other homeschool teens. You see, during the speakers banquet the kids of the speakers had to go somewhere, the answer, out to pizza. We had so much fun trying to eat pizza while joking, laughing and watching the amazing acting abilities of a young girl in our party.
Then everyone but Liz and I left and we decided before going to our dorms to check in with our moms. We made a good decision, sitting next to my mom was, Chesterton?, almost, Chuck Chalberg, Chesterton impersonator (very cool guy).
Then Liz and I went back to the dorms and talked for quite a while until our moms came back. We went to the lounge and talked about TAC until about midnight, went up to our seperate dorms and talked for about another half hour and then finally went to bed. (we sure did get alot of chatting in that day)

The Minnesota Conference- Post 1- Friday

My mom and I just recently returned from the minnesota conference. We drove up with friends, two kids and the mom from a family of seven. A girl who is several years older than me and a baby. You must imagine the six hour drive there, we were chatting the entire time, it was soooo much fun. Then we got to Minneapolis, then we got to the campus, it was beautiful. The buildings were just gorgeous and there was so much green and the weather was delightful too which made it even better. Well we got to the dorm, unpacked and then ran off to the Chesterton impersonator. We were a bit late but that was fine, I really liked it. It was the same guy who had done the quotes on the EWTN show. So it was really neat to see him in person. Then we went back and had a dorm party with some of my mom's friends from TAC then we went off to hear the dads panel, we were late again but that didn't matter much, it was really good, and funny. One dad would always start out his answer with a funny answer. Like when the question was. "What would you change about your homeschool?" He began "Nothing my homeschool's perfect!" then he set down the microphone then picked it up again and did his actual answer, but he was sooo funny. Well then we went back to the dorm got some food, hung out for a while then our friend took out her violin and started practicing. A while after she was finished we got invited to the dorm next door, where Mrs. Braga-Henebry and some of her friends were having a party, for her to play and I ended up dancing too, it was really fun. We stayed up kinda late and had to get up kinda early but that was ok, we had soooooo much fun.

Thursday, May 18, 2006


The best way to lessen The Da Vinci Code's success, go see Over the Hedge this weekend and make it the top movie in the box office.
Read more about it here.

Doodle (or maybe not)

I was doodling today, at least that's how it started, the result is this, probably one of my better pictures.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

My New Background

Ever since my mom and brother discovered the possiblities with changing your blog look they have been anxious for me to follow suit. But we could not find the right background, until yesterday that is.

We were sitting at the local dance studio waiting for Bernie to get out of class. I had brought The Ballad of the White Horse (as usual). My mom, being rather bored, decided to read some of it out loud (we were sitting outside the studio). While thus engaged we realized that the illustrations of that book would be quite suitable for my blog.

The picture I chose is that of King Alfred dressed as a minstrel in the Danes camp about to sing his song (which I love). King Alfred was dressed in this poor attire to go about the country and see if his people would help him in overthrowing the Danes. It was on this journey that the famous story of Alfred and the cakes came about.

You see he had asked for dinner at a small cottage and the woman had consented if he watched her cakes that they would not burn, while she went to round up the sheep. He fell asleep on the job and when the old woman returned, she scolded him severly and likened his failing to watch the cakes to King Alfred's failure to watch the country. This along with the woman's assurance that her husband would help in an uprising, helped him a great deal in his decision to take the country back from the invaders.

Anyways back to his song, after many of the Danish lords sing their songs Alfred takes up the harp,

"When God put man in a garden
He girt him with a sword,
And sent him forth a free knight
That might betray his lord;

He brake Him and betrayed Him,
And fast and far he fell,
Till you and I may stretch our necks
and burn our beards in hell.

But though I lie on the floor of the world,
With the seven sins for rods,
I would rather fall with Adam
Than rise with all your gods." (305-310)

"What have the strong gods given?
Where have the glad gods led?
When Guthrum sits on a hero's throne
And asks if he is dead?

"Sirs I am but a nameless man,
A rhymster without a home
But since I come of the Wessex clay
And carry the cross of Rome

I will even answer the mighty earl
That asked of Wessex men
Why they be meek and monkish folk
That bow to the white lords broken yoke
What sign have we save blood and smoke?
Here is my answer then.

"That on you is fallen the shadow,
And not upon the Name;
That though we scatter and though we fly,
And you hang over us like the sky,
You are more tired of victory,
Than we are tired of shame." (330)

That thought you hunt the Christian man,
Like a hare on the hillside
The hare has still more heart to run
Than you have heart to ride

That though all lances split on you,
All swords be heaved in vain,
We have more lust again to lose
Than you to win again.

"Our monks go robed in rain and snow,
But the heart of flame therein,
But you go clothed in feasts and flames,
When all is ice within;

Nor shall all iron dooms make dumb
Men wondering ceaselessly,
If it be not better to fast for joy
Than feast for misery." (350-355)

"Therefore your end is on you,
Is on you and your kings,
Not for a fire in Ely fen,
Not that your gods are nine or ten,
But because it is only Christian men
Guard even heathen things.

For our God hath blessed creation,
Calling it good. I know
What spirit with whom you blindly band
Hath blessed destruction with his hand;
Yet by God's death the stars shall stand
And the small apples grow." (370-375)

Soon after, the Danes were put to flight by the determined Wessex Men led by King Alfred the Great. Although the untrustworthy Danes made trouble for long after, the peace to come would never have happened if it weren't for King Alfred.

Sunday, May 14, 2006

My First Communion

Today is the sixth anniversary of my First Holy Communion. Wow I looked really different six years ago.

The elbow next to me is that of my cousin who shared the special day with me.

My Mom's First Communion was 28 years ago yesterday, both of ours came out on the same day as they had 6, and 28 years ago, pretty neat.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Update on My Ballad Memorization

In the last few days I have been working on my memorization alot, trying to make up for the month or so of neglect. Before I started this attempt I knew about forty-eight stanzas including seventeen I memorized in book three, I now knowseventy. My efforts have brought me up to and past one of my favorite stanzas,
The men of the east may spell the stars
and times and triumphs mark
But the men signed with the cross of Christ
Go gaily in the dark.
I have three stanzas left to perfect my knowledge of in the first book before I begin my conquest of the next. Memorizing this is going to take a long time.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Co-op adventures

We had a rather unusual co-op today. Our normal co-op is getting together with several other homeschool families, singing and Latin classes. The classes usually consist of checking our homework going over new concepts and those sorts of things. But this time was different.
After singing which I loved (we did Easter songs, one with two parts and one with four) we got the awards for the National Latin Exam. I got 35 out of 40 right in the test for which I received a Maxima Cum Laude and a silver medal. I was tied in this score with two others but Adriana alone out of our co-op recieved a gold medal and a Summa Cum Laude for a score of 36 our 40.
After that the three oldest Latin classes got together and we played Charades with scenes from Roman history and mythology. We split into two teams and each team wrote down seven scenes from Roman history of mythology and our team together acted it out for the other team to guess.
Our team did:
Attila the Hun
We split into two groups one at the top looking barbianish the other at the bottom looking Romanish. The barbarians ran down the hill and the Romans ran.
They didn't guess it so then we made a Roman arch one of us was Attila and another was the pope. The two started arguing and then the other team finally guessed it.
The Crossing of the Rubicon
Since I was wearing all blue I lay on the ground as the river Rubicon and everyone else was the army. After some hesitation they crossed.
Hadrian's Wall
Most of us stood right next to each other one paced behind us and another ran against the wall trying to break it finally he did and there was 400 years of history covered in 30 seconds.
The Seven Hills of Rome
There were only six of us on the team so we recruited a younger sibling and all sat down on the grass. It didn't take them toolong to guess it.
Most of us were the dragon and then Gus rid on the shoulders of a team mate and came and killed the dragon.
A Chariot Race
We split into two groups (Girls vs. Boys) with two in front as horses and one in back as the driver. The girls won!
Hannibal Crosses the Alps
We had three people as soldiers marching and two as servants dragging an ''elephant'' with them.

I do not have enough time to post on their acting now but perhaps I can in the near future.
Anyways it was all quite hilarious and everyone had a great time

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Easter Vigil at Scheonstatt

This week we had been planning to go to Easter Vigil at St. Anthony's in Milwaukee but last night that seemed a little far so we decided that some of us would go to the Vigil mass at Scheonstatt (a local convent). But then more and more of us wanted to go and so in the end we decided to all go. It was a really neat experience. We thought the Mass was at 8 but in reality it was at 8:30 so we arrived a bit early, but that was a blessing because we had a chance to visit the little shrine.
Now in case you have never heard of Scheonstatt I will elaborate. Scheonstatt is a Marian shrine but it didn't start that way, it was founded, nobody really knows when, before the 1300s, as a Shrine to St. Michael.
Then in much more recent times a german priest, Fr. Joseph Kentinich, discovered it and turned into a Marian Shrine. Now there are many shrines all over the world but not in many North American locations. So we are very blessed to have one so near us.
Anyways we visited the little shrine which is really the heart of the place then we went back to await the beggining of Mass. The Mass was beautiful, the choir was really good, the music was beautiful, there weren't many people there which made it even more special. The sermon was really good and I learned a quote of Fr. Kentinichs which I will never forget. When talking about how baptism is even more special than your birthday he said, "Every cow has a birthday".

After Mass everyone stayed for a while saying Happy Easter to everyone else. It was such a special Mass I will never forget it.

Well Happy Easter to all, I hope you have a Blessed and Happy Easter.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

A Chestertonian Easter Egg

Although nearly impossible to read in this picture, this eggs inscription reads,
The men of the east may spell the stars
And times and triumphs mark
But the men signed with the cross of Christ
Go gaily in the dark.

I was having trouble thinking of Easter Egg designs this morning while we were all decorating them for the Easter Egg hunt tomorrow. I decided that this stanza from The Ballad of the White Horse would be quite nice.
I have been working on memorizing the Ballad of the White Horse and now have nearly fifty stanzas commited to memory but the one above was the first I learned. And anyone who loves The Shadow of the Bear as much as I do doubtless has memorized it as well, as it is quoted several times in that marvelous book.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Madeliene L'Engle

Several months ago I read A Wrinkle in Time by the above mentioned author and loved it. Therefore I was delighted to learn that there were three more books in that series and read them eagerly. I enjoyed them all particularly the third book, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, whose extremly intriguing mystery and interwoven plot had me completly enthralled.

It was with great excitment you may guess that a few weeks ago I discovered the first book of a different series of hers, Meet the Austins, at a library book sale. My hopes were not disappointed.
It was a wonderful story about a family, who reminded me very much of my family, and the struggles that occur when a spoiled orphaned girl comes to live with them. I read the second book, The Moon By Night, yesterday which was also quite good though I did not like it quite as much as the first. I will soon begin the third, The Young Unicorns, as soon as possible get on to the fourth, A Ring of Endless Light, which I hear is the best.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

St. Edmund Campion By Harold C. Gardiner

St. Edmund Campion was on his way to being quite high in the Queen Elizabeth's favor when he decided to become a Catholic. He fled from England became a Jesuit and after several years returned to England. Before long he was arrested by the Queen's men, imprisoned, tortured and finally executed.

One thing I learned in this book was that William Shakespeare's father was a fallen away Catholic until he was brought back by a close friend of Fr. Campion. William Shakespeare, aside from being one of the most famous writers of all time was a catholic just like his father.

If All the Swords in England By Barbara Willard, Summary

When his twin Edmund found work in the kings court his twin Simon needed a place somewhere as well. He finds a place with the exiled archbishop, Thomas Beckett through a strange series of events. The brothers are caught up in the battle taking place between the steadfast Archibishop and the changeable King.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

A Very Special Day

Today we celebrate the Feast of the Annunciation, the day on which the Angel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary and asked her if she would be the Mother of God. Today is the beggining of the Novena for Impossible Intentions which you can find here.

I discovered recently in the Gilbert magazine that today is also Tolkien Reading Day. Pull out of one of Tolkien's wonderful books and enjoy. Celebrate the downfall of the evil lord Sauron by diving into one or more of his books.
So today we celebrate the annunciation and the downfall of Sauron. I don't think that is a coincidence. Tolkien was a Catholic and most likely chose that date on purpose.
But I must leave you to reflect on the possibilities for I should to follow my own advice and pull out a Tolkien book to celebrate these two joyous events.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Outlaws of Ravenhurst By Sr M. Imelda Wallace

This morning I finished a fabulous book entitled Outlaws of Ravenhurst, not for the first time, nor will it be the last.

Although it is set mainly in 18th century Scotland, its opening scenes are in America. A baby found by the roadside by the parish priest has grown up with the Abells, a hardworking Catholic family. Then one day visitors come, not just any visitors, the boy's relatives, nobles of Scotland come to take the boy back with them to Scotland. He is the heir of the castle Ravenhurst. There he meets his mother and she tells him much, the church is persecuted in Scotland, his father is imprisoned or perhaps dead. No, all is not well in Scotland. The next day he is rather bewildered, his room has changed and his mother is gone. One of the servants assures him it was a dream. Months go past and still his mother does not return. He is told that he will be sent to school and that in time he will become the Earl of Ravenhurst but before any of that he must give up his Catholic faith. His test is to come, so is the greater part of this book, which by the way I highly reccomend.

This book is excellent, speedily read but slowly (if ever) forgotten. The rich backround and exciting story make it a simply wonderful book.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Thesaurus Adventures

The other day I had my friend Cathy over. While working on a post on the Map Guy we found it necessary to find an alternate word for cool, which as you know is to be avoided at all costs on my blogs. Well the cost in this case was a lot of laughs while trying to find a synonym for this difficult-to-replace word. Many of the words we found were absolutely hilarious in the context, "The Mandylion is featured in a __ book.....", I suppose many of the words are hilarious in any context where cool would be used in that form. Some of the words we considered were: refridgerated, unflappable, uncommunicative, standoffish, unresponsive, non chalant, reserved and impertinent.
Also among our amusing adventures was when we were making use of the optional coloring of words in out post to put my statments in blue and Cathy's in green. Since my mom doesn't like me using cool and awesome, I put in (as a joke) cool, in the middle of one of my statements, but it was in green and therefore I did not use it, Cathy did.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Chesterton series

I have been watching a TV series on Chesterton (originally shown on EWTN). It is very interesting. I have learned a lot about Chesterton because of that movie.
He was a very humorous person (That wasn't my main discovery for even if you have only read a few paragraphs of him it is impossible not to make that discovery.) He told many jokes about his large size. For example he remarked that he was the politest man in England, for indeed he could stand up and offer his seat to three ladies instead of one.

Among his odd attire was a revolver which he never used except when someone would remark that life was not worth living. He would then pull out the revolver and offer to shoot the person.

There are to many highlights to cover right now. But if you would like to here them said better than I can you will just have to watch the series, G.K. Chesterton the apostle of Common sense.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

On Languages

Languages are amazing things. They have fascinating histories. Some of the most commonly spoken languages today have deep origins in latin. English Spanish and Italian have so much in common with latin. There are many languaes I want to learn but here are some of the most prominent in my thoughts:

From this list you can doubtless see how impractical I often am. These languages are probably some of the least commonly spoken in the world. Quenya and Sindarin are two elvish languages. There may be more but those are the two I have heard of. And since you may have never heard of either I may as well tell you a little about them.
Quenya is the language of the high elves, those who went over the sea to dwell with the powers, sometimes called the gods. The elves the first born in Middle Earth and the powers invites them to come and live across the sea with them. But not all of them went, those that stayed were called the gray elves and eventually for them Quenya were developed into Sindarin.
The history of the elves is quite intriguing but it is to long to even summarize it in this entry. If you want to learn more read the Silmarillion by J.R.R. Tolkien. It may be hard to get through but I highly recommend it. It is well worth the effort.
The other languages on my list, Gaelic and Welsh, are as you probably know, the languages used in certain parts of the British Isles. Gaelic is spoken mainly in Ireland, and Welsh in Wales. I guess the main reason I want to learn Gaelic is because it is spoken in Ireland which happens to be just about my favorite country in Europe (Ireland has some stiff competion in the form of Great Britain). Ireland is a delightful country. It is beautiful, just to begin with. Also I am an irish dancer and I would love to go and see the country where Irish dance originated.
Welsh I suppose I chose mostly for the reason that it was at least one of the languages that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien to create the elvish languages. But Wales is a lovely country too from all I hear and I would love to visit there as well.
Anyways languages fascinate me. J.R.R. Tolkien obviously loved languages as well. He created many, many languages for his book, The Lord of the Rings, and for the complex history of the world he created.

Vale(latin) namariee(Elvish, wrong spelling) sayanara(japenanese) vavel (norwegian) and finally Farewell!

Monday, January 23, 2006

Lady Susan

My dear sister,

I congratulate you and Mr. Vernon on being about to receive into your family, the most accomplished coquette in England. As a very distinguished flirt, I have always been taught to consider her...

...but by all that I can gather, Lady Susan possesses a degree of captivating deceit which must be pleasing to witness and detect.

So begins a letter from Reginald De Courcy to his sister, married to Mr. Vernon, and residing at a lovely country estate, Churchill. The infamous Lady Susan Vernon, a widow, and mother of one daughter, made the sudden decision of visiting her brother; hence Reginald could not help writing to his sister, who would soon meet this intiguing lady in person. Through a series of other letters, that make up the entirety of the book, Lady Susan's romantic escapades are revealed for the readers' entertainment, reflection, and personal criticism, if the philippics on her character are not numerous enough in the story for your taste. However, let me aquiant you with these events, by endeavoring to give you a sketch of them now.

Lady Susan Vernon did not go to her brother's until practically driven to it. She did not have her own house, after her husband's death, and though residing at a friend's house, with her daughter at school, it wouldn't do to remain there longer. Why? Mr. Manwaring, at whose house she stayed, was in love with her. What made that so dangerous? He was married. And by her meddlesome flirtation with a gentleman whose affection was previously bestowed on Mr. Manwaring's sister, she set both female inmates of the house against her.

A removal to her friend Alicia Johnson's house in London was out of the question, so she went to her brother's though, "Charles Vernon is my aversion, and I am afraid of his wife." Thither also went Reginald, to meet this deadly middle-aged beauty. He was enchanted, and we will leave them to stir up discontent for his sister while we turn our eyes elsewhere.

Young, pretty, and neglected Frederica Vernon had been packed off to school by her conniving mother in a fit of temper. It would be no more than fair to Frederica to say that she was of no account to her parent except to make a rich alliance. So when Sir James Martin offered to marry her, nothing would please Lady Susan but that she should accept; the thought most abhorred in Frederica's mind. Now, with Lady Susan at Churchill, Mrs. Johnson was valiantly attempting to re-convince Sir James that he is in love, and persuade Frederica to marry him, if he should renew his addresses.

The 'scorceress' of this story, the 'villain', has put Reginald 'under a spell'. He has been converted to Lady Susan's fantasy of her innocence in the Manwaring affair, and does his best to convince his sister as well. Poor Catherine Vernon writes to her parents, conveying this dreadful news, for she is afraid of Lady Susan's ambitious power. Reginald, when warned by his parents that they did not look upon the match with a friendly eye, protested that he had never thought of Lady Susan in that way.

Just at the peak of this romantic crisis, Lady Susan had sent a fiery epistle to her daughter, insisting on her marriage to Sir James. The regrettable result was that Frederica ran away, was caught, and was conveyed by her uncle to Churchill, until further arrangements could be made regarding her education and residence. Her mother calmy concealed her fury under a quiet, pathetic and penitent despair, displayed to Reginald during their long walks. By her account, poor Frederica never could bear opposition well, and she was afraid she'd been too lenient. Besides all this she maliciously led him to believe Frederica an ignorant, ill-tempered girl, with no personal degree of understanding, and none of the more amiable virtues. This lead Reginald to hate the girl, declare her 'ill-favored', and slight herself while spending every possible moment with her efficious mother.

Though Reginald was no source of consolation to the martyr of this story, his sister, whose unbiased principles and natural immunity to charms kept her vision clear, was. She got to know Frederica enough to see that she was as clever as her mother, though meek and artless in the true girlish style Catherine doubted Lady Susan had ever capacitated.

Quick as she was, Lady Susan could not elude facts forever. One of the more irritating ones pushed its way through her skillfully-woven fantasies now, for they, being non-existent, could not be strong enough to keep reality eternally at bay. Sir James Martin, guilefully talked into love for Frederica, pursued her to Churchill, and, not being content with arriving unexpectedly, had to invite himself to stay at a house that belonged to no relation or even aquaintance of his own. Lady Susan was delighted, and though explanation for the persona non grata must be made, she had great pleasure in seeing him determined to remain. Her scheme ran as follows; Frederica, forbidden to speak to her aunt and uncle on the topic, would, for lack of any other option, subject herself to her mother's will and accept the proposals that would certainly be renewed.

Frederica, who had harbored an admiration for Reginald (though the compliment was reversely returned), applied to him, out of sheer desperation, acquainting him with the whole of the history, and asking that he, Reginald, exert his power to convince Lady Susan of the cruelty of a forced marriage and the unsuitableness of the object, his boyish manners, his ill propriety. The result of this plea was highly gratifying to Catherine; her brother, after an argument with Lady Susan, resolved on returning home directly to Parklands, Sir James was dismissed, and Frederica justified in Reginald's estimation.

It didn't last. By now you know Lady Susan well enough to know that her influence alone was enough to make a very flimsy tale plausible in Reginald's eyes, and that if she spoke with him before he left, under pretense that they should not part in such a state of animosity, he would be won over afresh by her charms, and converted to her falsehoods again easily enough. Such was the case.

This business accomplished, she took, by way of refreshment, a visit to London, where her enjoyments would be varied and determined by Mr. Johnson's fits of the gout. Her daughter remained stationary at Churchill, to her satisfaction. She enjoyed Mr. Manwaring's attentions. This made the unexpected sight of Reginald De Courcy quite lamentable. She'd thought him at Churchill, how dare he follow her away? At all costs, he must be kept from the truth. He called on Lady Susan one day, and she, expecting Manwaring in merely half an hour, sent him to the Johnson's under a paltry excuse, asking Alicia, via note, to keep him there as long as might be.

This, however, was her downfall. Mrs. Manwaring had gone to Mr. Johnson, her guardian, for help, and Reginald found her there. All further attempt on Lady Susan's side to pursuade him of a misunderstanding were fruitless, he left her in London to such society as she chose, and returned himself home to Parklands. Of Lady Susan, you are more anxious to hear. In three weeks' time, she announced her marriage to Sir James Martin, poor, stupid boy! and lived out the rest of her life in wealth, idleness, flirtation, and whatever plaguing she got from her tardy conscience.

Frederica's future is brighter. She resided at Churchill quite happily with her aunt, uncle, and small cousins, until the agreeable alteration of affection in a certain young gentleman we all know resulted in her marriage; her admiration had remained unchanged. The delight this brought to his family was all that could be wished, and we will drop the curtain on them satisfied, I hope, with the conclusion.