We had a great start to the Paschal season but before Easter, we had to get there.
Lent was okay for me. I really could have done better and wish I had. I like to fall into the trap of - okay I'm bringing the kids to services and that's my sacrifice. That is a huge part of Lent for me because taking kids to services right at dinner and bedtime and not having help from my partner in crime is tough. But I haven't had his help and I rarely get his help so then that's just a cop out for me. I really need to do more in the reading/prayerful sector of Lent next year. I think I could do better in the fasting area of Lent as well and Lee and I have already discussed that.
Anyhow Palm Sunday rolled along and that was great but it is also the true test of can you hack Lent in our family. First it is the start of Holy Week and Second, palms and tree branches in church? That's asking for trouble. A didn't catch anything on fire which was most excellent though he did whack a few people. Church endorsed liturgical distractions.
We survived Palm Sunday just fine and then it was Presanctified on Wednesday with Anointing of the Sick (yes, Eastern Catholics receive that sacrament once a year - not just if you are sick or dying). Then Holy Thursday we were back in the Mount with a procession at the end (and why candles are passed out I will never understand because they are out with the wind within seconds of walking out of church). Friday E and I went to Stations. It was peaceful and prayerful. Then we loaded up for Vespers of Entombment with another candle distribution and procession of sparsely lit candles.
We dropped the big girls off at Grammy and Grandpa Joe's after vespers which turned out to be awesome for all parties involved.
Lee had a whole day in the kitchen to cook in peace
I had a day to legit clean - like vacuum and mop and clean the van - Lee kept looking at me funny because I NEVER have time to do that kind of stuff
E, R and M got to dye Easter eggs
A & C got to rule the roost
Grammy got to bake some A+ cookies and had some great decorators
Grandpa Joe got to impart his crosswalk knowledge to the girls and play some Uno and Sorry
Also, Lee and I watched The Passion of The Christ when we got home from Vespers. It seemed quite appropriate and we hadn't watched it in YEARS. I had forgotten how intense it is and it definitely puts a whole different perspective on some of the things we sung at vespers - "The Creator is slapped by the creature" and I also couldn't help but think about that on Easter morning at Matins and Liturgy. I hope we make it a tradition to watch it but hopefully we'll start it before 9:30 pm on Good Friday.
The crew for our family pic.
A walked around church with his tie unzipped - yes it zips in the back and is the coolest invention ever - for most of church. He didn't love it but he had to wear it just like the girls had to wear their bows except E who is currently boycotting them.
After some amazing food - there's a big luncheon after church (hello City Chicken and Pascha cheese) we headed to my parents.
There were lots of baskets to be found that Uncle Kevin hid ( they got to hunt the ones from G&G when we arrived and they hunted the ones from Lee and I after rest)
Bubbles and chocolate bunnies
Jump ropes and dresses
A got a ball and decided to keep his tie zipped after we left church
Books, bathing suits and Kindereggs ( the proper ones with actual toys inside not the ones you get here that the FDA sensors)
Saint peg dolls
Flashlights and chips - the chips were a big hit
A and his tie he wouldn't take off even during rest
The saint peg dolls!
I gave E and R 2 each and M one. I custom ordered most from here and I was thrilled. Props to anyone who can name and figure out why I gave E and R the ones I did. Clues are all in the blog archives : )
A got a bubble machine because the one we had bit the dust
I cannot say I love this one but whatever... C seems to like it
I found these neat Lego flashlights for everyone except C and Leia is missing and if you want to figure out who got which and why you'll have to hit the archives as well.