Friday, March 29, 2013

A "not so perfect" end of Lent and Holy Week

Phew!  It truly is Holy Week and the end of Lent, huh?  We started this week (or rather ended last week) with me fighting severe hives and an allergic reaction and I ended up being hospitalized Saturday and Sunday evening.  I came home Monday, but am fighting symptoms still, not to mention the nasty side-effects of being on steroids.  I had a kidney stone (blasting) surgery two-and-a-half weeks ago, and it's still unsure if medication given to me from that is what triggered my body to explode like this.  I am a mystery to the doctors right now and have many follow-up appointments in the next couple weeks to try to figure things out.  I was covered from head to foot in hives (literally!) and here a two pictures of my legs to show you how beautiful they were and a picture of my sweet little visitor who came in to say "hi" and bring me good cheer.... 

sweet smiley Rose....   it was SO hard being away from her those 2 nights while I was in the hospital! 

God is so amazing and wonderful, and comes to us "in flesh" when hard times and CrAzInEsS like this hits.  My family was amazing -- helped with kids throughout the day and overnight.  My mother and sister took me to the ER after my family medical doctor shooed me out of her office and sent me there right away.  My mom even stayed the night with me the first night (like she says - "once a mother, always a mother" - thanks, Mom!  I love you!!!!).  My older sisters ran Ariel's birthday party, which had to change last minute and only include cousins.  My sister-in-law brought a meal to feed our crew, a sweet friend stopped by to visit while I was in the hospital and left food/goodies at our house, another friend made a yummy meal, and not to mention, the countless emails, phone calls, messages from all our other family and friends.  God truly made His love and presence known and made bearing this cross much lighter and easier.  Thank you, God!!!

Now, like I said, all that happened at the start of the week....  Then we were hit with many deaths as the week went on.  Two of them were sisters that our children train with and are part of our TKD family - truly heartbreaking!!  Please pray for their family - their mother just gives and gives of herself for our TKD family and is almost always present when we are there for classes.  Her girls were always bouncing around and bubbly as ever, and will truly be missed.  The other death was the husband of our local Pro-life NFP doctor, and had a tragic death as well.  And, then we also found out that a sweet friend of mine lost her brother-in-law and we lost a wonderful lady from our parish.  May God send His love and presence to all the families involved in these deaths and may the faithful departed rest in peace....

We really went "all out" last year for both Holy Thursday and Good Friday, and enjoyed our Liturgical Teas to bring such beauty and meaning to these Holy Days.  But, being on survival mode all week and still today, we had to simplify our plans quite a bit.  For Holy Thursday, we thankfully made it to Mass and our sweet baby Olivia was one of the twelve to have had her feet washed.  It was absolutely *precious*!  She totally lit up when Msgr went to wash her piggies and of course, Msgr and the two deacons were all smiles as well.  What a beautiful bonding and gracefilled moment this was.  Probably similar to the gesture of love that our new Pope Francis made when he washed the feet of two women and shocked the world on the same day.  For today (Good Friday), I made a breakfast egg "crown" (made from crescent rolls and scrambled eggs), the kids colored some pictures and we were able to pull off a very simplified version of a Good Friday Liturgical Tea for dinner.  This added some comfort and tradition to our celebrations and although was served on paper plates (again -- we are still on "survival mode"), it was still very nice. 

a breakfast egg "crown" bake
crucifixion coloring pages

crucifixion coloring pages

crown of thorns (see this link from our 2012 post for more details)
crown of thorns refried bean dip (see this link from 2012 post for more details)

Here are some more pictures that show our "not so perfect" end of Lent and Holy Week.... as you can see, we became WAY behind on our Jesus tree with the CrAzY last couple weeks.  And, not all the kids got their coloring done on our REPENT cross....

2013 Jesus tree (looks like we'll still be adding a few pieces throughout the Easter season)

our 2013 REPENT cross and calendar
Although the last couple weeks haven't gone according to *our* plans, we still give our thanks and trust to our wonderful God, because all is perfect in His eyes and He always works everything out according to His plan. 
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