Thursday, January 2, 2014

2013: The Year I Read

2013 turned out to be the year that I read prolifically. Due to some personal situations, I became quite the homebody. And just read. I've always been a reader. I will read anything I can get into my hands or onto my Kindle. For my 2013 Lenten sacrifice, I gave up reading fiction books and focused on spiritual reading. At the time that Lent began, I had several Catholic books going at the same time and made it a goal to finish those books before I would allow myself to read another fiction book. That fast ended up lasting until September.

Browsing through my Kindle and some of my actual hard copy books, here is the list of books I read in 2013. And not necessarily in the order that I read them.

Fun Fiction I read after September:

Divergent by Veronica Roth
Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Allegiant by Veronica Roth

The Uglies by Scott Westerfield
The Specials by Scott Westerfield
The Extras by Scott Westerfield

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (re-read)
Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
Voyager by Diana Gabaldon
(I read the whole Outlander Series in 2012 but started re-reading this series in anticipation of book 7 to be released in June 2014.)

The Girl in Room Fourteen by Carol Drinkwater

Fall of Giants by Ken Follett
Winter of the World by Ken Follett

Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender

A little Spiritual Reading:

Catholicism by Father Robert Barron

Forming Intentional Disciples: The Path to Knowing and Following Jesus by Sherry A. Weddell ( My favorite of the whole year!)

The Bad Catholics Guide to Good Living by John Zmirak and Denise Matychowiak
The Bad Catholics Guide to Whiskey, Wine and Song by John Zmirak and Denise Matychowiak

The Eucharist: A Bible Study Guide for Catholics by Fr. Mitch Pacwa, S.J.

The Eucharist: A View From the Pew by Fr. Gerald P. Weber

If Your Mind Wanders at Mass by Thomas Howard

7 Secrets of the Eucharist by Vinny Flynn

My Sisters the Saints by Colleen Carroll Campbell (loved, loved, loved this one!)

And then for the Catechesis Classes I took:

Sacramental Theology: Means of Grace, Ways and Life by Kurt Stasiak, O.S.B

How Do Catholics Read the Bible by Daniel J. Harrington, S.J.

This Is Our Faith: A Catholic Catechism for Adults by Michael Pennock

You can link up to other readers through the Carrots for Michaelmas blog and see what other like-minded bloggers read this year:

What did you read in 2013? What was your favorite book? Share your own link-up or leave a comment.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

The Story of the Lemon Merengue Pie

This is the story of the Lemon Merengue Pie.

Every special occasion, usually Thanksgiving and Christmas, my mom would make sure each of us kids had our own favorite pie. My brother Charles and I loved cherry pie. I honestly don’t remember my other brother’s favorite pies but I know we always had Pecan pie, apple pie, pumpkin pie and my cherry pie. And mom did this every Thanksgiving and every Christmas. Our Christmas feast was a repeat of Thanksgiving since we usually received several turkeys from kind Samaritans. Oh, and there was always a third turkey that was saved for Easter.

But for my dad it was always lemon merengue pie. As we got older, she would usually let us help make “our” pie. And I remember that she always fretted until Daddy’s pie was made. I remember being in the store with her helping to find the ingredients for Daddy’s favorite pie. And when his pie was ready, she would carry it out to him and he would make a big production, hug her and smack his lips. She would blush and smile. Geesh, they were cute.

When I was twenty-four, my mom passed away after a two year battle fighting breast cancer. That was in March. We made it through Easter that year and my sister-in-law, Michelle, and I figured out the Easter feast.

As my Dad’s birthday started to approach in August, I began to fret, like my mom, about making sure Dad had a lemon merengue pie for his Birthday. See, Daddy never had a birthday cake on his birthday. He had lemon merengue pie. And he would smile, smack his lips, make a big deal out of eating his pie and give Mom her hug. And she would blush.

I found a recipe for lemon meringue pie. I headed to the grocery store to find the ingredients. I looked up and down every aisle trying to find lemon peel. I headed back to my apartment and called my Aunt Kay (no cell phones back in those days!).

Me: “Aunt Kay, where do I find lemon peel?”

Aunt Kay: “Honey, you have to buy a lemon and then scrape some of the peel off.”

So, back to the store I went and home again with my lemon.

I accomplished the lemon part of the pie with no further problems. Of course, I used the frozen pie crusts in the foil pans. What twenty-four year old single girl do you know that owns a nice pie pan? This one didn’t! And then I was moving onto the merengue part and my first attempt was not very successful. Can I just say how thankful I was that my Aunt Kay kept answering her phone that day? Did you know that you are supposed to beat the egg whites for a long, long time? Until they form stiff peaks? So, after another conversation with my Aunt Kay, I headed back to the grocery store and found a tin of cream of tartar.

My second attempt at the merengue produced a beautiful and lovely pie and I was quite proud of my handiwork!

A little bit later, I made a way to my Dad’s house and unveiled the loveliest pie I had ever made. Well, it was my first pie. And my Dad gave me a hug. It was just me and him sitting on the front porch with our slices of heavenly lemon merengue pie. And as he is digging into his slice:

Dad: “You know, your momma always used to make me a lemon merengue pie. And I never really did care for lemon merengue pie!”

Oh. My. Word!! It turns out that my Daddy really loved Vanilla crème pie but Mom had made a lemon merengue pie for him at some point and he’d made a big deal out of it and she’d thought that meant he loved lemon merengue! This my friends, is true love.

And that’s the story of the lemon merengue pie.

Me and my Daddy a few years after the Lemon Merengue pie incident. I have, on occasion, made him a Vanilla Crème pie.

Monday, January 14, 2013


What term do you use in your community?

I'm not an expert on this topic but I do remember my priest, Father Dynek, in 2003 informing our community that EME refers to the priest. Eucharistic Minister is the name used to designate the priest. Those lay people who distribute communion should be referred to as EMHC (Extraordinary Ministers of the Holy Communion) since they are extra-ordinary not part of the ordinary distribution of the Communion.

So, for 10 years now, I've continued to say EMHC and everyone else still continues to say EME's. Most likely because it's easier to say EME's over EMHC's. Maybe instead of saying the "Eucharist Ministers" we should say the "Extraordinary Ministers".

But this is what the Pope said:

This is incorrect termniology. The Vatican has repeatedly made statements that the correct wording should be used.

Need for an Appropriate Terminology

In his address to participants at the Symposium on "Collaboration of the Lay Faithful with the Priestly Ministry", the Holy Father emphasised the need to clarify and distinguish the various meanings which have accrued to the term "ministry" in theological and canonical language.(53)

§ 1. "For some time now, it has been customary to use the word ministries not only for the officia (officies) and non-ordained (functions) munera exercised by Pastors in virtue of the sacrament of Orders, but also for those exercised by the lay faithful in virtue of their baptismal priesthood. The terminological question becomes even more complex and delicate when all the faithful are recognized as having the possibility of supplying-by official deputation given by the Pastors-certain functions more proper to clerics, which, nevertheless, do not require the character of Orders. It must be admitted that the language becomes doubtful, confused, and hence not helpful for expressing the doctrine of the faith whenever the difference 'of essence and not merely of degree' between the baptismal priesthood and the ordained priesthood is in any way obscured".(54)

§ 2. "In some cases, the extension of the term "ministry" to the munera belonging to the lay faithful has been permitted by the fact that the latter, to their own degree, are a participation in the one priesthood of Christ. The officia temporarily entrusted to them, however, are exclusively the result of a deputation by the Church. Only with constant reference to the one source, the 'ministry of Christ' (...) may the term ministry be applied to a certain extent and without ambiguity to the lay faithful: that is, without it being perceived and lived as an undue aspiration to the ordained ministry or as a progressive erosion of its specific nature.

In this original sense the term ministry (servitium) expresses only the work by which the Church's members continue the mission and ministry of Christ within her and the whole world. However, when the term is distinguished from and compared with the various munera and officia, then it should be clearly noted that only in virtue of sacred ordination does the work obtain that full, univocal meaning that tradition has attributed to it." (55)

§ 3. The non-ordained faithful may be generically designated "extraordinary ministers" when deputed by competent authority to discharge, solely by way of supply, those offices mentioned in Canon 230, § 3(56) and in Canons 943 and 1112. Naturally, the concrete term may be applied to those to whom functions are canonically entrusted e.g. catechists, acolytes, lectors etc.

Temporary deputation for liturgical purposes — mentioned in Canon 230, § 2 — does not confer any special or permanent title on the non-ordained faithful.(57)

It is unlawful for the non-ordained faithful to assume titles such as "pastor", "chaplain", "coordinator", " moderator" or other such similar titles which can confuse their role and that of the Pastor, who is always a Bishop or Priest.(58)

This specifically applies to an EMHC:

§ 1. The canonical discipline concerning extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion must be correctly applied so as to avoid generating confusion. The same discipline establishes that the ordinary minister of Holy Communion is the Bishop, the Priest and the the Deacon.(96) Extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion are those instituted as acolytes and the faithful so deputed in accordance with Canon 230, § 3.(97)

A non-ordained member of the faithful, in cases of true necessity, may be deputed by the diocesan bishop, using the appropriate form of blessing for these situation, to act as an extraordinary minister to distribute Holy Communion outside of liturgical celebrations ad actum vel ad tempus or for a more stable period. In exceptional cases or in un foreseen circumstances, the priest presiding at the liturgy may authorize such ad actum.(98)

§ 2. Extraordinary ministers may distribute Holy Communion at eucharistic celebrations only when there are no ordained ministers present or when those ordained ministers present at a liturgical celebration are truly unable to distribute Holy Communion.(99) They may also exercise this function at eucharistic celebrations where there are particularly large numbers of the faithful and which would be excessively prolonged because of an insufficient number of ordained ministers to distribute Holy Communion. (100)

This function is supplementary and extraordinary (101) and must be exercised in accordance with the norm of law. It is thus useful for the diocesan bishop to issue particular norms concerning extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion which, in complete harmony with the universal law of the Church, should regulate the exercise of this function in his diocese. Such norms should provide, amongst other things, for matters such as the instruction in eucharistic doctrine of those chosen to be extraordinary ministers of Holy Communion, the meaning of the service they provide, the rubrics to be observed, the reverence to be shown for such an august Sacrament and instruction concerning the discipline on admission to Holy Communion.

Therefore, precise language is very important to the Church. She wouldn't have issued several documents on the subject if it weren't.

Monday, January 7, 2013


4. Season one Happy Days reruns on Hallmark.

5. Three hour naps after being up all night.

6. A kid who gets herself up this morning and gets ready for school without me yelling at her!

Sunday, January 6, 2013


1. Mass twice today.

2. Mk's sleepover buddy who makes us all laugh.

3. Cool, breezy weather.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

What She Said.........

I'm not the only one doing this whole dress dare challenge thingie.

Read what some of my friends who joined the challenge are saying:

From a Hawaii friend:
‎15....days.....down.....S​IGH. I SUPPOSE I should say 14 since I "cheated" the day of my final and wore jeans to the lab. There are days like....well, not today, but maybe where I just want to throw some shorts on. I'm doing ok, but getting tired of wearing the same skirts and dresses day after day after day after day after.....well, you get it. ;) This is a long month. ;)

And another Hawaii friend:
I put on capris one evening to go to the movies (after spending all day at the beach in a dress and swim skirt) & totally felt different! I apparently carry myself differently in skirts and dresses!

And the friend who started it all:
Greetings from Demanda! You may recognize me as the culprit that started this whole thing....
So, I have worn a dress or skirt every day starting 2 days early.... well except the one Saturday that I was so tired, and cleaning, and cooking the entire day preparing to have a farewell party at my house on Mother's Day. On that one Saturday I wore a HUGE sweatshirt and a pair of comfy running pants... I felt guilty nearly the entire time, but since it was something that I would wear to bed and work out clothes, and the weather dropped 40 degrees that morning... I kept my pants on. I have found that I can get away with wearing my little bit dressier dresses because I am going to work or church 6 days a week! But, that also tends to make Saturdays seem all the more a sacrifice! I mean really... I just want to stay in my sweats and sleep all day! And, now that the weather is back down so cold that snowflakes were reported this morning I had to wear the pair of jeans that are the closest thing I have to skinny jeans and pretend that they were jeggings under my polo shirt dress today just so I wouldn't freeze to death in my office! But I noticed quite a few things... 1) you can't wear frumpy shoes with Dresses or Skirts... and since I've been wearing a lot of "church dresses" that means wearing a lot of shoes with heals. After three days in a row of heals my calves were a bit sore! 2) Being dressed nice so often also means putting my face on more often... I never used to wear makeup so often! 3) Pantyhose, you need to make sure that your alligator hands are moisturized and your nails aren't gnarly so that you don't snag them before you even wear them. I've already killed 3 pairs in the last two weeks! 4) Overall posture, whether walking or sitting is better. 5) Dresses and skirts are easier to find good fits in... I put them on and feel better and look better then when I have on pants or slacks because a good fit in pants is just nearly impossible to find. 6) I really love frumpy workout clothes!
7) People are more ready to help a lady in a dress and heals carry the huge water jugs to the car, then they are the lady who just found her way out of the gym... or so they assume. I do Love dresses and skirts more than I thought, but my casual wardrobe is much more summer... not so much for the 40-50 degree days.

Overall the dress dare is really forcing me to be more feminine and thus making a noticeable difference between me and the men around me.

Half way through the month of May

I am half-way through the month of May and half-way through my Dress Dare Challenge. 15 days of wearing skirts and dresses and 16 more to go. How do I feel? Really tired of skirts!

No, really. I have lots and lots of beautiful Sunday dresses. However, my Sunday dresses are a little too much for every day wear. I have found myself wearing the same daytime skirts day after day.

I have a basic denim skirt that hits right at my knee. I tend to wear this one with basic short sleeve polo type shirts.

I have a basic kaki skirt that hits right at the knee as well. And when I wear my baskic short sleeve polos with this skirt, I look like I am in a school uniform.

I also had a poly/knit black skirt that hit slightly below the knee. This skirt was an a-line with an elastic waist. When I wore this skirt, I felt like a pentecostal!! Alas, the first time I washed it after wearing it three days in a row, the elastic snapped. I didn't like that skirt much anyways. Today, I picked up an identical black skirt at the px in a size smaller so hopefully I won't feel so pentecostal.

I have some longer broom stick skirts as well but I seem to revert to these three skirts over and over again.

Have I been faithful to wearing skirts every day? Weeeeeellll, mostly. One Saturday morning, I worked out, walked the dog and spent the day frantically cleaning my house for a party the next day. I wore capri work out pants all day-- even to the commissary for a quick shopping trip. Of course, I ran into two of my MCCW friends. Including one friend who was doing the dress dare with me. And what was she wearing? Not a skirt!!!

And yesterday, I spent all day at the beach with my brother and I wore swimming shorts most of the day over my swimsuit. But I did wear a skirt later that evening when I went to a friend's house for a meeting.

So, yes. I have worn a skirt or dress for 15 days in a row.

How do I feel? I like wearing skirts. I think it makes my interactions with others softer. I think other people treat me differently when they see me in a skirt or dress. There certainly seems to be a difference in how service workers interact with me, like sales clerks. Maybe wearing a skirt subconsciously makes me want to be more feminine and softer in my dealings with others.

I really don't know, though. Check back in with me in 16 days.