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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Early to Rise, Early to Bed

I was up at 6:30 for support group. So glad I went. Now, lavender candle burning. Good night; peaceful dreams.

1. Early bird :) support group.
2. Walked Sug a bit in rain.
3. H. and I have been pacing ourselves for First Communion party Saturday, doing tasks ahead of time. This is Patsy's helpful idea. I baked cookies and dessert tart crusts. Found savory tart recipe and will make dough for two tomorrow evening. Hauled toys out of dining room and into basement. Cleared out a pretty leaded windowsill. H. mowed front lawn, must still do back. He also has to do the grocery shopping and get paper goods.
4. Private Benjamin. Hard.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Steeple Chase

Well I tried to get to noon Mass but wasn't feeling great so I set my sights on the express 3:30 Mass in the auditorium at Mountainside Hospital. But H. took Punch to the mall for fun this rainy Sunday and didn't get back in time.

Then I googled the churches in surrounding towns. My friend told me Montclair State has a nice Mass at 8:30 p.m. but it's hard to park and anyway, too late for Punch. 

I thought I'd found a 7 p.m. Mass at a Polish parish in Clifton but think it was 7 a.m. instead. Finally, drove w Punch to Saint Philip the Apostle up Valley Road in Clifton because I thought they had an evening Mass but again I was wrong. We got out of the car in the rain and stood by the statue, I guess of Saint Philip holding Baby Jesus.

Let's say a prayer, I said as we approached the cold marble deities. It occurred to me that an onlooker might find this whole scene odd on a dreary Sunday night, an older mother figure and rambunctious young brunette approaching a statue. They might mistake me for a religious fanatic, not a frantic lady who is supposed to get her girl to church every week and dropped the ball.

Take a picture of me hugging the statue, Punch said.

No, my phone is in the car and it's raining.

We hopped back into our warhorse CR-V and drove home. 

Good night.

1. Long talk with Pats, from Colorado, who encouraged me to get out and walk. Even though it was rainy, I did. We also talked about other strategies to overcome depression.
2. Made a nice tomato sauce with angel hair. 

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Pushing Through

H. had the car in D.C. overnight for work, and Punchy's First Communion Retreat was from 9 to noon at our parish. So she and I walked the 20+ minutes there. 

The retreat was great. I didn't have one as a girl--don't think Figgy did, either.

The children rotated through six activities: banner making, seed planting, singing, kneading and baking their own little loaves of bread, practicing receiving the wafers and sipping the wine [how brilliant is that! I think mine stuck to the roof of my mouth that memorable day] and my favorite, touring the altar and sacristy with Father Kelly. 

I've been going to Mass for decades and learned a lot today. I stayed with other moms to help out. Fun facts:

1. There are gluten-free Communion wafers available now by special request. Apparently they are snowy white.
2. Father Kelly showed us a lovely gold vestment worn for the month of May, Mary's month. On the back, he joked to the children, was "kind of an antique selfie"--an image of the Blessed Mother.
3. Take your baseball cap off. "No hats in church," Father Kelly said, but kindly, to a young boy with a blue cap. After 50 years, I should of course know this black and white rule inside out. But I guess I was more focused on the white gloves and Easter hats of my girlhood. Speaking of white, Punchy and I chose a beautiful veil at Over the Moon on our walk home from town today.

Back at the ranch, after running a lemonade and iced tea stand with her pal Rowan, Punchy was singing the hymns from the retreat and making her own Communion wafers, by cutting the crusts off white bread slices, adding water to the remainder, flattening and cutting into circles. She had H. and me come up to receive them [and key lime juice in a wineglass] in the dining room and then, my favorite part, she gave one to our dog, Sugar. She put our small Mary statue from H.'s Grandma Millie on the ground so Sugar could see it.

The walk helped lift my spirits. I have to get back to walking every day.

Good night.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

A Toast to a Friend

Beverly Riddick.

Historic Van Vleck House & Gardens.

Went to Van Vleck tonight, one of many people lifting a glass to Beverly Riddick, who has for 20 years led HOMECorp to provide affordable housing in mansion-heavy Montclair. Often, crumbling old homes are rebuilt and refurbished to give a new family a new start. Appliances included--we once donated a good kitchen stove.

When I met Beverly, Figgy was in 6th grade and invited to Olivia Riddick's sleepover birthday party. I had to get directions to Christopher Street. [I can't believe that! Now I know our town map much better.] The two girls have been close friends ever since. 

I knew about Beverly's work, have sat in her living room, met her parents, but was wowed by the scope of her achievements tonight.

And applause to Events by Joni, the caterer. The food was good! Hot trays of pasta with cheese set up next to toppings like real crumbled bacon, peas--and truffle oil, yum. Hors d'oeuvres passed on trays, a groaning good cheese board, mini baguette slices topped with steak and excellent frosted brownies and ice-cold lemon bars, both cut into teeny-tiny squares.

Good night.

Such great outfits on the women tonight! Pretty dresses, bright colors, Chanel-style jackets, gold-threaded sweaters, dramatic silver link necklaces. I was underdressed. 

1. Met with my friend's cleaning lady, who is going to come day before Punchy's First Communion party next week. Thank you, God.
2. Put my foot down.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Still Lost in Space, but with a Page-Turner

Loving this mystery set in 1961 in rural Minnesota. It was our last book group choice, and though we met Sunday, I'm just finishing it now. Julie lent me the copy she renewed at the library.

Good night.