Friday, December 2, 2011

7 Quick Takes: ADVENTures, 2011 Part One, and My Second Ever Giveaway


I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We spent a glorious few days with Joe's parents in Williamsburg. The weather was beautiful. Joe enjoyed a round of golf with his dad, and we all had some much-needed R&R--watching football, walking the dog, reading, video games, and we took in the new Muppet Movie. (If you haven't seen it, go. It's most sensational, inspirational, celebrational, Muppetational...) It was even warm enough on Saturday to enjoy an alfresco breakfast at Aromas Cafe' in Colonial Williamsburg.


Sunday Mass with the New Translation went swimmingly! (For my non-Catholic friends, this past Sunday the Church introduced an new edition to the Roman Missal for masses in English. The new version is a more literal translation from the original Latin, and many of the prayers and responses are slightly different. The language is richer and more eloquent, and we're now using wonderful words like "incarnate" and "consubstantial.") Our choir director led the congregation in a practice round of the prayers and responses before Mass, and that was helpful. Father R reminded us throughout the Mass to say "And with your spirit," and everyone was given a cheat sheet when we arrived. And I LOVE LOVE LOVE the new Eucharistic prayers! I mean, "you give life to all things and make them holy, and you never cease to gather a people to yourself, so that from the rising of the sun to its setting a pure sacrifice may be offered to your name." Awesome!


When we arrived home on Saturday, I decided to reorganize my kitchen cabinets. I spent a good-sized chunk of time on Saturday and Sunday taking things out, packing things I don't use into a box to send to Goodwill, and moving items from one place to another. I found about twenty or thirty brown paper bags of various sizes stuffed into a couple of drawers--I can't imagine why on Earth I wanted to save them. I had bread pans in three different places (I mean, who keeps bread pans in three different places? Joe is delighted because now he knows where to find things), and I dug out two serving trays I completely forgot I had. I was able to clear away some of the clutter that had built up on the countertops over the summer. This weekend I hope take some time and tackle the study shelves, and find places for all my Religious Education stuff, which is mostly in cardboard boxes at the moment.


I've been going over the changes in the Mass these last couple of months with my third graders in CCD. Recently I found this Mass response booklet over at The Catholic Toolbox blog. I printed it out and made black-and-white copies, and gave them out to the kids to color and take home. A few weeks ago I wrote the words to the new penitential rite on the white board, and covered up the words one by one and had the kids fill in the blanks. They loved that one, since they were competing for prizes. We only have one more class before the Christmas holidays (classes are cancelled Wednesday and Thursday for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception), and they'll be having treats, listening to Christmas music, and decorating their own personal Jesse Trees. (I'm just using the one that's printed in their textbooks, and I printed off some symbols I found at Our Sunday Visitor for them to color, cut out, and glue to their trees. One of these days I'll plan far enough ahead to make a real Jesse tree, and have the kids make the ornaments. I want to do that at home too--maybe next year!


Now for the part you've all been waiting for--the giveaway!! I'm fast approaching my 200th post, and my three-year blog-aversary is not far behind. With Christmas coming soon I thought it might be a good time for a giveaway (And I'd better do it now before I change my mind. More on that in my next post.) What's the prize? A signed copy of Our Lady of Kibeho by Immaculee' Ilibagiza! Last spring I had the privilege of meeting Immaculee', and I bought several books that she signed for me: one I gave to my mother (Left to Tell), one is for me (Led By Faith, Immaculee's story of her faith journey, which I still haven't read), and one to share with you! We just celebrated the feast day of Our Lady of Kibeho on the 28th of November, too; had I known beforehand I would have had this giveaway earlier. Ah, well...


To enter the drawing, all you have to do is:

1. Follow my blog. If you already follow me, leave a comment letting me know you want to be in the running.

2. Leave a comment here.

3. Share this post with your friends, either via social networking or by email. Let me know in the comment box (or by Facebook, Twitter, or email) that you've done this. I operate under the honor system! :-)

You don't have to do all three to get your name into the cup (the last time I had a giveaway, I used a Dave and Buster's mug that we acquired on a visit to Atlanta; this time I'll probably use a Southern Living At Home Rudy Reindeer Mug. They're my favorite, and dang it, they've been discontinued.) If you do all three, your name will be entered three times; if you do two, I'll enter you twice, etc. You get the idea.


You have until ONE WEEK from today to enter--Friday, December 9. I will announce the winner on the 10th or the 11th. My goal is to get the book in the mail on Monday the 12th so you'll have it before Christmas!

Let the ADVENTures begin, and be sure to visit Jen Fulwiler's Conversion Diary blog for more Quick Takes!


  1. Oh my, I love your wreath! Beautiful! My husband went to hear Immaculee once and loved her. What a great prize! :)

  2. Thanks, Katie! That's my mother-in-law's wreath, actually. (Sometimes I like to call her "Martha Stewart" because her house is so beautifully decorated.) Shall I put your name in for the giveaway? :)

  3. Beautiful wreath! Wishing you a blessed Advent!

  4. Sharon, please enter me in the giveaway, I already follow you. I will share this with friends too! I have Immaculee's Left to Tell book, what an inspiring story.
    Peace be with you,

  5. Ooooh, I would love to have that book!

  6. Sounds like a wonderful book.

  7. Yes, please enter me! (I'm also a follower...could that sound creepier?)

  8. I love your outdoor wreath, Sharon. and your Advent wreath with the pinecones around it. I thought I was following you-- I get you on my feed reader so I must be following you, but I don't see myself in your followers box, so I'll have to de-lurk and be a public follower. Just wanted to let you know (i.e. your most recent post) you have more readers than you think !!I too love to see when people from other countries have stopped by. God bless your Advent.


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