Sunday, February 17, 2019

Flash Back to How Mass Used to Be

This morning I attended mass at Our Lady of Snow in Wheatridge, Colorado. I picked up a one page bulletin and was surprised to read: Please follow the dress code for our church; women and girls please wear dresses/skirts and head coverings and men should wear dress slacks and ties to mass. Please make sure all clothing meets Catholic standards of modesty. Most of the persons followed the rules but I did see somepeople that did not.

There is a book store that sells missals, religious books, and veils for the women. At the entrance there is a place where one can pick up a veil before entering the church. When mass began the first thing I noticed was that the priest had his back to the congregation. If there were readings, the priest may have sung them in Latin. He did give the homily in English and faced the people but the majority of the mass he had his back to us. Everything else at the mass was in Latin and all the hymns were also in Latin.

When I arrived and sat down, the Rosary was been prayed. Those prayers were in English and exactly like the Rosary I know.  I expected to see a statue of the Blessed Mother that resembled other pictures of Our Lady of the Snows but there weren't any. I did see Our Lady of Fatima, St. Joseph, St. Theresa, St. Anthony, and many other saint statues. The large stained glass windows were decorated with different saints and the Stations of the Cross were also the same as any other Catholic church.

The ringing of the bells at the consecration and the long communion railing brought back memories of when I was growing up. When I heard the bells I automatically struck my breast. Communion is taken at a long communion rail and the priest places the host on the tongue. There is no taking the host in the hand.  I noticed the host was smaller and not as crisp as in my church and by the time I reached my seat it had dissolved and I was able to swallow it without chewing. I liked that aspect of the host.

What I noticed is that everyone held their hands as if they were praying and kept their eyes looking down. After mass people were going down some stairs for breakfast that the nuns had prepared. I was invited by a friendly lady and everyone seemed very friendly and kind. A proud Dad, holding a two month old baby, stopped to chat with me. A young man showed me where materials about the church were kept. I was surprised that no one knew the story of Our Lady of the Snows.

Outside there is a large grotto with Our Blessed Mother with other saints. 

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Sixty Two Episodes

Going through the Netflix lists of movies, documentaries, and serials, I came across La Esclava Blanca. It is about slavery, relations between white and black people, and a baby that is saved from a burning plantation when her parents are killed. The white baby is raised by black slaves, a love between the baby that grows into a beautiful woman and a handsome black slave becomes the plot. Treachery, lies, cheating and vile behavior mixes with love, kindness, romance and understanding! From then on it is one exciting scene after another; murder, romance, happiness, torture, dancing, funerals, weddings, evil and sadness. I am on the 25th episode and there are 62, and I find myself unable to stop watching.

Blood, sweat and tears with a few moments of happiness. The acting isn't the best but my curiosity needed to find out what would happen next. The show is a tele-novella from Colombia that takes place in the 1800's. As in any soap opera there are parts where I felt like cheering, parts that were suspenseful, and boring parts where I found myself saying "blah, blah, blah!"

Tonight I saw the last episode and after may deaths and betrayals, everyone ends up being happy and content. I found myself wondering about a young man who ended up in prison because I would have wanted to see him released and united with his loved ones, but now I will never know what happened to that character. I guess I should be happy that most of the main characters (Lucia, Milagro, Rosario, Tomas, Trinidad, Julian, and Nicolas) got what they deserved. The last scene shows the good guys around a table raising their glasses of wine and toasting what will become a glorious future. The white "bad guy" ends up as a slave in the mines with many black slaves. His mean and cruel mother goes off into the distance alone and unloved.

Each episode was about one hour long and I would watch 3-4 segments at a time and enjoyed every minute! A couple of nights I even had some of the characters enter my dreams!

"I think that baseball games 
are like soap operas. If you 
watch four in a row, you
know enough to get hooked.
Jennifer Garner

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Two Dogs

When my family in California was going to be gone for a few days, I went to take care of their two dogs. They are both Border Collie mixes and each has a personality of its own. I knew this by my visits in the past, though this was the first time I would deal with them by myself.

The day I arrived the day was clear, the sun was shining and the mountains were snow covered. It was a beautiful welcome to California. I was told it happened to be the first day that it had not rained after having a week of cold and rain. I hoped the sun would continue to shine and that it would be warm on my visit to California. On the day I left to go to California I heard that the Denver area had lots of snow and it was seven degrees below zero!

Both dogs were waiting for me and were looking through the metal fence to see me as I got out of the car.
They are on a schedule of feeding between 6 and 7. 
 Morning walk. 
Outside for awhile. 
Bring in and they sleep.
 I was to make sure the water bowls were filled.
Give them a treat.
Take for an afternoon walk.
Feed at 5.
Put them out to do their business.
Keep them indoors after 7 because of coyotes.
Bed time.

These dogs are so smart that they reminded me when it was time to do whatever they were supposed  to do. They sit and stare at me when it is time to be feed. Amazing how their look makes me realize they want something. I found myself talking to them and one makes noises as if talking to me. One evening I dozed in the comfortable leather chair and felt a hard nose pushing against my thigh. I opened my eyes and both dogs were sitting beside the chair staring at me. Once they had my attention they walked to the door to be let out.

When it was time to go for a walk they would go to the front door and I would say, "Do you want to go for a walk?" I swear it looked as if they were nodding. They stood still while I put on their leads, wrapped a green baggie on the lead and off we'd go. One dog felt the need to do her thing and I had to put her thing in a green plastic bag. My daughter's final words before she left were: "Be sure and pick up if one of the dogs poops....neighbors do not like finding poop on their lawns and they might even film you if you don't clean up after the dogs!"  That was all the warning I needed!  
One dog is a sniffer and has to sniff ever blade of grass, tree, hydrant, wall or bush. The other one is not too much of a sniffer and walks more than he sniffs. For two days we followed the schedule but on the third day it was raining and I kept them in doors except for short breaks when I would let them out.  That afternoon when I went out, my granddaughter came to walk the dogs once the rain had stopped.

Below are the many faces of two wonderful dogs.  They are good and obedient pups and easy to watch. I enjoyed myself with these two dogs that seem to enjoy doing everything in tandem! They walk together, eat together and sleep at the same time!

And here I am interacting with my great grand dogs!

"Dogs do speak
but only to those
who know how 
to listen."

Monday, February 11, 2019

Always With Me

As I walked two dogs in California I found a penny. It brought a smile to my face because I knew that my son was near. I picked up the penny, put it in my pocket and my walk took on a bouncier step, the world looked brighter, and I knew my son was somewhere near. Every time I find a penny, I know he is letting me know he is close.

As I told the dogs about how much they would have liked my son and how he would bring home strays. I told them about Poker, Black Sabbath and about my daughter's dog, Chico. I mentioned Pablo but they looked at me with their brown eyes as if to say, do you have a treat?  Of course, anyone watching would have thought I was talking to myself or on my phone but it was good remembering my son! 

He is never far from my thoughts, but when I find a penny, I just believe he is really close!

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Hints Being Tossed My Way

Painting Our Lady of SnowsA few years ago, I wrote a blog about Our Lady of the Snows located in Belleville, Illinois. The first time I heard about Our Lady of the Snows was when I was in St. Louis, Missouri. The Shrine was not too far and I thought about going to visit, but changed my mind and never went. The second time I heard about Our Lady of Snows was in doing research about a picture of Our Blessed Mother and an airplane. A friend had found a picture of what looked like the Blessed Mother and there happened to be an airplane in the picture. I found out that the "the flying priest" belonged to the Order of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate residing at Our Lady of the Snows Shrine in Illinois. See my blog of May 5, 2017 regarding the Shrine and the flying priest who flew to remote missions to take medical aid and supplies.

As time has a way of passing, about one year and a half has gone by since that blog. A few weeks ago a friend of mine told me about a church in Wheatridge, Colorado. She told me that the mass is celebrated in Latin, the priest has his back to the congregation, women cover their heads, wear skirts or dresses and the men dress in slacks. "It's like mass used to be in the past," she said.  I was curious about the church and looked it up.

It's name is Our Lady of the Snows. I get a feeling that Our Lady is tossing hints my way. A pilgrimage to the Shrine is working its way into my heart and thoughts.

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Tossing The Six Month Old Tomato

Finally, I got tired of looking at the tomato resting on a spoon rest on my stove. The tomato was one on a vine of a cluster of red tomatoes purchased in July of 2018. Here are the latest pictures of the infamous tomato. Today it gets tossed out!

"The Federal Government has sponsored
research that has a produced a tomato
that is perfect in every respect except
that you can't eat it. We should make 
every effort to make sure the disease, 
often referred to as 'progress' 
doesn't spread.
Andy Rooney

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

One Sentence Tells It All

White blossoms clinging to dry branches on trees.

Yesterday morning the scenery was beautiful. 
A deep blue sky sparkled in the frosty world.
Trees were covered with spots of white frozen on each branch. 
Roads had been cleared after a big snow storm.
  I was warm in my car.