Sunday, December 07, 2008

Found in The Wisdom and Innocence by Joseph Pearce:

"...this splendid stir and thrum was to have a marked effect on Douglas Hyde during a train journey through south London:

Through my mind, in rhythm with the wheels, ran a verse from Chesterton's
Ballad of the White Horse I had re-read not long before:

Therfore I bring these rhymes to you,
Who brought the cross to me,
Since on you flaming without flaw,
I saw the sign that Guthrum saw
When he let break the ships of awe,
And laid peace upon the sea

Could there be so many Catholic Churches? I asked myself, as cross
followed cross. Why had I not seen them before? Through Herne Hill, Tulse Hill,
smug, suburban Streatham, the crosses came and went. And still the wheels
hammered out Chesterton's lines:

Out of the mouth of the Mother of God
Like a little word come I;
For I go gathering Christian men
From sunken paving and ford and fen,
To die in a battle, God knows when,
By God, but I know why.

Hyde was, at this time, a leading member of the Communist Pary and newseditor of its paper, the Daily Worker. Soon after, he resigned from its ranksand became a Catholic."

Thursday, November 13, 2008


From our first performance of Emma: Jane Austen (who narrates the play), with her literary creations: Mr. Knightley, Harriet Smith, Emma Woodhouse, Jane Fairfax and Frank Churchill.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A Slighty Random Photo

GilbertGirl and I at Caddie Woodlawns house on the way back from ChesterCon!

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Our Prop Table

At one of our recent Emma practices.

Saturday, October 04, 2008


WOW, I'm almost to three months inactivity here, tehe (:
Need I say it's been busy? But oh it's been incredible.
Grandparents 50th, CA cousins in town, ballroom dancing, preparations for the TMAH production of Jane Austen's Emma, catechism, madrigal choir, my first job, Shakespeare lit program, latin club, of course some school, John Bosco Youth Day and a thousand other things have kept me most delightedly busy, and led to a sad neglect of this blog. But stay tuned, we have TONS of pictures from the time elapsed since my last post.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Fringspield 08

We just got back last night from an incredible weekend of "cousins and cousins of cousins", dancing, swimming, stories, laughter and of course an absolutely lovely wedding.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Airport Detour

On the way to ChesterCon. Guess who we got to meet!

Happy 4th

Thursday, July 03, 2008


There has recently been something of a ballroom dancing revival in our homeschool group (hurrah!), and so my cousin and I have been dancing lately, but this is us about 10 years ago!

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Happy Feast Day

Today is the feast day of Blessed Junipero Serra, founder of the renowned California Missions. We were delighted to be able to visit ten of those missions while in California in May, it was awesome! My three favorite of those were (and still are):

Mission San Juan Capistrano

Mission Santa Inez

A quiet, charming place with an incredible view, lovely grounds and a beautiful church. Located more in the country than most of the other Missions, it's a great place to imagine yourself back into the time of it's founding.

Mission San Carlos Borromeo better known as Carmel was absolutely gorgeous. One of my favorite parts was the little side chapel, dedicated to Our Lady of Bethlehem in which Pope John Paul II once prayed!

This woefully inadaquate summary of some of the most beautful missions will have to do for now. Stay tuned for ChesterCon, the Love2Learn gathering and hopefully more regarding our California trip.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

San Juan Capistrano

So, I'm a little behind on this blog. (: We've been to California and back, jumped right back into craziness and have had a marvelous time. In CA we visited (among many other things) ten missions. And one of my favorites was San Juan Capistrano, as seen in the two pics. The ruinous church is absolutely breathtaking, and the grounds are delightful. Plus, we got to meet a delightful family there, and so, in case you can't tell, I absolutely loved it.
Hopefully I'll get a chance to post more extensively soon, but for now... a picture's worth a thousand words right? (:

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Thursday, May 08, 2008

"Don't cry over broken glass".... take pictures of it!

An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered, and an adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered.
-G.K. Chesterton

Monday, April 28, 2008


Monday, April 21, 2008

The Robe

Having seen the movie of The Robe numerous times and reading a script adaptation, it seemed high time to read the book. I loved it.

It's a story about the centurion who oversaw the crucifixion of Christ, and who won His robe while gambling. The robe, after driving him mad for several months, ends up bringing him back to Palestine. Touring the area around the Sea of Galilee, he hears many stories of the strange doings of Jesus. The journey culminates beautifully in his conversion to Christianity. The story goes on, but I have no wish to spoil the ending.

Oddly enough (especially odd if you know me) the romance in this story was one of my least favorite elements. The part I loved was in Israel. The centurion, Marcellus, begins as something of a sceptic and manages to find "realistic" explanations of the first couple of miracles of which he is told. But then he hears the story of Lydia. His change of mind and heart is exquisitely handled, and the outsiders point of view through which the reader hears of Jesus creates a story well worth reading.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The people this Beatitude (Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied) describes are those who are not content with things as they are and refuse to stifle the restlessness of heart that points man to something greater and so sets him on the inward journey to reach it- rather like the wise men from the East, seeking Jesus, the star that shows the way to truth, to love, to God. The people meant here are those whose interior sensitivity enables them to see and hear that God sends into the world to break the dictatorship of convention.

- Pope Benedict XVI Jesus of Nazareth (Chapter Four, page 91)

Break the Conventions, Keep the Commandment

-G.K. Chestertion Manalive

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Lit Discussion material

Our monthly lit discussion group today took on The Ballad of the White Horse. Contrary to typical procedings we made our way through the epic in a fairly methodical fashion. Of course tangents are unavoidable which explains our brief discussion of Enchanted. A few points that stick out in my memory are:
Book I: The question which Alfred asked Mary, and the answer he recieved.
Book II: The contrast between the reactions of the chiefs whom Alfred recruits
Book III: The Danish lords who sang, the varying types of hopelessness which their songs expressed and how different Alfred's song was from their's.
Okay, there was a lot more... GilbertGirl? Algernon? Anybody else who came? Help!?!? (:

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Frank's Toes

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

JOHN PAUL II, WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008


I think I'd be better with lit. (: Geography still needs some work.
Hat-tip: Studeo

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Resurrexit sicut dixit!


Sing now, ye people of the Tower of Anor,
for the Realm of Sauron is ended for ever,
and the Dark Tower is thrown down.

Sing and rejoice, ye people of the Tower of Guard,
for your watch hath not been in vain,
and the Black gate is broken,
and your King hath passed through,
and he is victorious.

Sing and be glad, all ye children of the West,
for your King shall come again,
and he shall dwell among you
all the days of your life.

And the Tree that was withered shall be renewed,
and he shall plant it in the high places,
and the City shall be blessed.

Sing all ye people!

-- J. R. R. Tolkien: The Return of the King

P.S. I did try a Chesterton Easter Egg again, no, you probably don't want to see it (trust me, it did not turn out very well) but if you must, you must. It's here.

HE IS RISEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ALLELUIA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

There is hope for Hollywood!

I just found out that all the people listed below were married only ONCE!!!!!!

Jim Caviziel
Mel Gibson
Alfred Hitchcock
Colin Firth
Jennifer Ehle
James Cagne
Sir Alec Guiness
(hat tip to Mamselle Duroc for the last two)

And (these two really made my day)...

Jimmy Stewart
Gary Cooper! (I actually did jump up and cheer when I heard those two :)

And those were only of the handful of actors and actresses we looked up.

Monday, March 17, 2008


Calendars through all of AD!

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

Friday, March 14, 2008

This Morning

So True

If the crowns of all the kingdoms of the empire were laid down at my feet in exchange for my books and my love of reading I would spurn them all.

-Francois Fenelon

"Do you think Friday unlucky?"

"No, I think Friday lucky," answered Gale. "All Christian people, whatever their lighter superstitions, have always thought Friday lucky. Otherwise they would have talked about Bad Friday instead of Good Friday."


Did they (certain tribes who worshiped various elements) not in fact sing more songs, and dance more dances, and drink wine with more real merriment? That was because they believed in evil. In evil spells, perhaps, in evil luck, in evil under all sorts of stupid and ignorant symbols; but still in something to be fought. They at least read things in black and white, and saw life as the battlefield it is. But you are unhappy because you disbelieve in evil, and think it philosophical to see everything in the same light of grey.

-both by G.K. Chesterton from The Poet and the Lunatics

If you follow the will of God, you know that in spite of all the terrible things that happen to you, you will never lose a final refuge. You know that the foundation of the world is love, so that even when no human being can or will help you, you may go on, trusting in the One that loves you.

-Pope Benedict XVI from Jesus of Nazareth

Monday, February 25, 2008

Good gracious, I've been neglecting this blog. I've been having an utterly marvelous time... the Wilderness, Washington DC, The Latin Convention, The Stations of the Cross... And those were only some of the major events. Well here are some pics, in a very hap-hazard fashion, to give you some idea (all though you can't get a very full one) of what life has been like.

The Stations of the Cross, put on by a group of homeschool teens which I recently became involved with. It was awesome.
The view from our hotel room in DC. I was, to say the least, pleased.
What my dad and I did with the snowbanks on either side of our driveway
My cousins and I at Mt. Vernon, overlooking the incredible view of the Patomic. You can have no idea of how awesome it was from this picture. Mt. Vernon was really incredible, hopefully I'll get a chance to post more fully on it.
Our group at the March for Life. 'Twas a combonation of Rock for Life and Pro-Life Wisconsin as you can probably see from the signs.

Your humble servant enjoying the beauty of the Fransiscan Monastery in DC.
I do not at the moment have any particularly iconic pictures of The Wilderness or of the Latin Convention. If I get ahold of some I will try to post them.

One other reason for the major neglect here was ChesterTeens. Believe it or not, I've been posting on it!!! Discussions and things, what fun, go take a look.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

Tolkien and Beowulf

Well, we're having a discussion of Beowulf on Sunday. Due to a brief mention of Tolkien's interest in this book in a DVD lecture on Beowulf, we have been hunting "high and low" for more references and our search has not been fruitless. Although I have to warn anyone planning on browsing the indexes of Tolkien: Man and Myth, Letters to Tolkien and Tolkien: A Celebration, they are very distracting. With references such as Alice in Wonderland, Chesterton and The Ballad of the White Horse, it is virtually impossible to focus on the topic in hand. Following some of these references I learned that although, when he was younger, Tolkien was a big fan of the Ballad, later on he became critical. I found this bit from a letter to his son Christopher in 1944, quite fascinating:

Priscilla... has been wading through the Ballad of the White Horse for the last many nights; and my efforts to explain the obscurer parts to her convince me that it is not as good as I thought. The ending is absurd. The brilliant smash and glitter of the words and phrases (when they come off, and are not mere loud colors) cannot disguise the fact that G.K.C. knew nothing whatever about the "North", heathen or Christian.

I also learned that drumroll please C.S. Lewis knew much of the Ballad of the White Horse by heart! And that (this I heard in a different place) Tolkien had memorized all of Beowulf in Old English!

And actually, believe it or not, I did follow the Beowulf references as well. On page 89 of Tolkien: A Celebration I found this:

Tolkien's remarks in his classic essay Beowulf: The Monsters and the Critics are the best I have seen on the 'Germanic' vision, but he considered Beowulf's author to be a Christian who was looking back at a heathen heroic past, and his theme, 'man at war with the hostile world, and his inevitable overthrow in Time' is one 'no Christian need despise.'

So anyways... just a few interesting tidbits, after the discussion I may very well have more

Friday, February 08, 2008

Judith of France By Margaret Leighton

On the reccomendation of Algernon and his sister I recently read two books, the titles of which are Judith of France and Journey for a Princess. They were both very good, although I am still unable to decide which I like better, and I shall hereby attempt to write a post about them. Judith of France first, Journey for a Princess, hopefully to follow soon.

Judith of France was the great-granddaughter of Charlemagne the Great. However that magnificent king's line is no longer great. The sons of Charlemagne now wage petty wars between themselves, and it is for this reason, and for the pursuit of wealth and prestige, that Judith's father arranges a marriage for her. Heartlessly, he betrothes high-spirited, still teenaged Judith to the sixty year old king of England, Aethulwulf. Already weighed down with this news, Judith is told by the Archbishop of Reims that it is his belief that she is irrevocably doomed to follow in the footsteps of her grandmother, that is to cause strife and even war; "father against son, brother against brother". Frightened, confused and disheartened she brings the story to her tutor, bringing about one of my favorite scenes, where the latter tells her in much better words then mine that no man's future is set in stone, that choices can and must be made and that, with God's help, she can do what is right. Vastly relieved, she makes a vow never to be the cause of strife between family or friends. This vow leads her to many tough decisions and, which shape her story into an unusual, thought-provoking and satisfying tale.
WARNING: due to Judith's vow the story contains some slightly mature content.

Friday, January 25, 2008

I've Been Tagged

A. Lynch tagged me for this meme. What fun!

1. Pick up the nearest book (of at least 123 pages).
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people.

"Of which he was the patron. I was there
From college visiting the son- the son
A Walter too with others of our set,"

(From Poems of Tennyson the poem is The Princess; A Medley)

I Tag:

All of the ChesterTeens.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

D.C. March for Life Trip

I've been trying to think of a nice well-written opening to this post and, having utterly failed, I shall proceed to make my point in as few words as possible....

I'm in D.C.! Having no internet access readily available, I shall confine myself to a fairly short post, however, when I get back home I will try to write a long (or several) and probably boring post. So for now, I'm merely checking in and providing a brief list of our activities.

Scenery in Maryland and Virginia
Although I unfortunately have no pictures of the scenery through which we drove on the first couple of days, it was gorgeous. Thanks to the audio book "Mount Vernon Love Story", my mind was already in a revolutionary war mentality and the forests, hills and fields that surrounded us, under the light of a setting sun, made a perfect backdrop for imagining scenes from that time. It was incredibly easy to see a band of revolutionary soldiers walking through that field, or hiding in that wood, fighting on that hill. Unfortunately my writing skills are such that you can have no idea of how cool is was, unless you have gone there yourself.

Mt. Vernon

The Franciscan Monastery (in D.C.)

Bus Tour of the City

For an hour-long bus tour of the city, we joined our Pro-Life Wisconsin Group. Among other things, we saw the Iwo Jima statue and the Lincoln Memorial (we got to get off the bus and walk around at both places). Also, we saw the Ford Theatre (in passing) and the National Air Force Memorial.

Pro-Life Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception

Funny Story...

While ordering breakfast at a restaurant this morning, we ran into my mom's roommate from college! Surprisingly, she recognized ME because I look like my mom and she's probably seen me in Christmas photos. Wow!

The March for Life itself

It was cold, but it was also cool. We began with walking to a preparatory rally at which a number of people (including presidential candidate Ron Paul) gave brief speeches. Unfortunately, due to our distance from the stage and the many distractions by which we were surrounded, I was not able to listen properly to the speeches. Luckily, EWTN offers post-march replays of the rally, so I hope to see it later. Before many of the speeches were over, our group (Pro-Life Wisconsin) departed in order to get an early place in the march. After standing on the sidewalk for about an hour, the march finally began. During that time, we prayed the rosary and my cousin sang a lot of ridiculous songs. There were a lot of groups around us and our group was standing with Rock for Life (with which we have been doing many activities).

Many people chanted: "Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! Roe v. Wade has got to go!"

The number of people was astoundingly large. I've heard several different numbers on how many - somebody said half a million, somebody said a quarter of a million, somebody said 200,000, so I don't know, there were a lot! It was a somewhat squishy day in D.C. :)

The vast majority of them were young people - all very enthusiastic - smiling, jumping, chanting. It was fun being part of the group. I found it inspiring and hopeful, to put it mildly. Once we reached the Supreme Court, many people gathered around to hear testimonies of women and men (belonging to the group "Silent No More") who had had an abortion and since greatly regretted it. The stories were sad and bittersweet.

After that we went back to our motel room and rested. We were outside and on our feet for about five hours.

More details to be added later. I'm off to dinner...

Thursday, January 03, 2008

All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

Happy Birthday Tolkien!