Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A Skyline love story

Peg and Paul are celebrating their first anniversary on Sunday. It's one of my favorite love stories.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

In Bellevue

We went to the Bellevue Botanical Garden light show with Z and J. She loved the pink lights, the illuminated monkey, and the butterflies.

Sunday after Christmas

Just listening to music and putting together a puzzle. The puzzle pieces include Christmassy shapes!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

At the Keeper's Cottage

The approach to the cottage was quite magical. We didn't get to spend much time with Lady Alice, but everyone else had a lovely time.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Boxing Day dinner

We had the cutest salad ever for dinner tonight. Made by our friend Joannamauselina, of course.

At the manger scene

When we were kids our favorite Christmas movie was "Nestor the Long-Eared Donkey." This year, his brother, the one-eared donkey, is in the Cathedral's manger scene. For some reason his ear will not stay attached. Archbishop even mentioned it in his homily at Noon Mass.

PS Do not watch "Nestor the Long-Eared Donkey." It is not nearly as good as you remember.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas

M has also been known to retell some of the great English novels in emoticon format.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Special guest blogger

Guess who loves orange, brown, blue, and purple? And iPads?

Monday, December 22, 2014

The Greening

Tonight was the Greening at the Cathedral. It is mainly about the poinsettias, but there is also a lot about banners, wreaths, and the giant gold mobile.

This is supposed to be a poinsettia:

We found a tiny Santa hat for our Saint Joan statue:

Only two more days in Advent!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

A busy Sunday

Today was a busy day, ending with Readings and Carols. In addition to the beautiful liturgies I schlepped a lot of books and put out a fire in a trash can. All in a day's work.

Today's pictures are details from the place cards I made for our big Christmas dinner which will be on Tuesday night. Each person has an image that starts with the same letter as their first name. For example: Beverly, baby Jesus. So perhaps you can guess what the other one is....

Saturday, December 20, 2014

At the dedication of a new altar

Tonight we went to St Joseph's in Issaquah for the dedication of a new altar. We hadn't seen this rite in many years so it was exciting to watch. The Archbishop takes off his chasuble and puts on a special apron to slather the altar with the chrism. Then incense is burned directly on the altar before the altar cloth is placed for the first time. We had a great view since we were just about the only ones who wanted to sit in the front row.

December 19

I didn't quite get this posted before midnight! Tonight we were in Redmond eating cookies at J, D, and Z's. This is Zizi holding her "snuggly duck," which she loves to snuggle. "Snuggly duck" is a stuffed toy duck snuggling a blanket. It's half toy, half blanket. Best of both worlds, if you are Zizi's age.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

One week from Christmas

Strasbourg Cathedral is celebrating its 1,000th anniversary of dedication this year. Our publishing friends are based in Strasbourg so they have done some new books for the millenaire including two we got in the mail today. This is copied from one of the seemingly countless amazing stained glass windows.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Back at the Archives

We did some more digging in the Archives. Among other things we found a picture of a little 19th-century boy in a top hat and a bespangled white suit in Bishop O'Dea's family album. Could it be Bishop O'Dea himself??? There was also a picture of Bishop Shaughnessy smiling. Smiling

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Christmas tea

Today was the day of the annual Smithlin Christmas tea. It was also Jane Austen's 239th birthday--hence the Christmas/Austen shrine.

Here's the Norman Rockwell shot.  Something of a tea tradition.

Who better to enjoy Smithie T-shirts than our favorite Smithies?

The "awkward lean" shot with our favorite authors turned out pretty good!

Merry Christmas, Smithies!

Monday, December 15, 2014

A day of paper

Today was my day for paperwork. I printed up plans for many liturgies and e-mailed them to many people and put copies in many other people's boxes. I also printed up readings, petitions, hymns, psalm refrains, and antiphons. When I got to the end, it felt like I was almost done. Of course, I haven't actually started. But the feeling was nice while it lasted.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Gaudete Sunday

I am cutting it close tonight. This is not a rebus, just a day in the life.

A. Mass.
B. St Lucia's Day cookies at the Smiths!
C. Cutting up a purple onion for dinner with Stephen.
D. Cooking up a storm for dinner with Stephen.
E. Vespers.
F. Mass redux.
G. Defunct string of lights necessitating a slight tree reconstruction.
H. Tommy sticking her head in and making it hard to draw on the iPad.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Another busy Advent day

This morning we had Simbang Gabi. This is the actual scale of the size of the parol that comes down from the oculus. It's very tall as you can see.

In the evening, we were going to be babysitting but J and D were sick so they couldn't go out after all. This picture represents the desolation of our evening which was supposed to be filled with stories and pop-pops with Zizi. At least Tom and Hairy are happy about it.

Friday, December 12, 2014

In West Seattle

There should be a children's book written about these girls. They live on Hill Street and they love to dance and sing. They say things like, "Daddy, can you put on more music? Ballet music" and "excuse me, will you dance with me?"

Here's Ella's idea of a close-up. "Say cheese say cheese say cheese say cheese."

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Tree

Our plan was to get the tree tonight, but because of the Great Wind of '14 we decided that I would get the tree in the afternoon instead. I think it was probably better to get the tree in driving rain than in driving wind, especially since they tied the tree on top of the car. So today I became one of those people.

Here is the before picture. 

And the after shot.

The kitties are already getting into trouble with the ornaments, lights, presents, and water--in fact, they are interested in everything about the tree except the actual tree. 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Out shopping

You will never guess where.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Another visit to the Archives

Today we explored the St Edward's collection at the Archives. It was jammed with treasures--old yearbooks, grade books, diaries, and photos--Bishop O'Dea as a teenager, the seminary under construction, lots of old pictures of people we know. We were only sorry 4:00pm came so soon and we had to leave.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Advent retreat

My retreat notes will have to count as today's Advent drawing!

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Christina's birthday

Yesterday was the 184th birthday of Christina Rossetti. Our friend Chris made the most amazing birthday cake for her, worthy of the author of "Goblin Market": "Figs to fill your mouth, / Citrons from the south... Grapes fresh from the vine, / Pomegranates full and fine..." My drawing skills are really not up to the challenge so I append a photograph, too.

Friday, December 5, 2014

At the Elliott Bay Book Co.

Even though M's classes are done, she had another event tonight, an "evening of reflection" for the Christifideles program. So here I am at the bookstore having dinner by myself. This works out fine since the people by themselves outnumber the people who are with other people.

I decided to do my drawing for today the old-fashioned way but the paper in my purse is quite small.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Advent 1.5

Our latest comic book gig is the story of Father Augustus Tolton, the first black priest in the US, whose cause for canonization was recently introduced. It's an amazing story--I finished reading his biography today. In addition to being a gifted pastor, he taught himself to play the accordion and had a beautiful baritone singing voice. He died at 43. We are pretty excited to write about him. I mean, it's not the Great American Novel, but it could well be the Great American Graphic Novel.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The famous Chick

Today was M's last day of class for this quarter. As hoped, Father Raschko brought Chick, his sun conure, to meet everyone. Maria says he mentions Chick all the time in his lectures.

As it turns out, a sun conure doesn't say anything or do any tricks. But, she is a very striking bird.

Belated day off

My still life did not turn out as hoped, but I think I matched our front door color pretty well.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Third day of Advent

We went to Carolyn's place for lunch and I left my purse in her closet. That means M has to do all the driving till Thursday, when Teresa kindly brings my purse in on her way to work.

Now we are listening to Julie Andrews sing "In the Bleak Midwinter." I am going to make my first-ever banana bread.

Monday, December 1, 2014

A day in the 19th century

In the morning I finished "Mansfield Park." Pictured here is the scene where Fanny returns to Mansfield accompanied by her sister Susan. Fanny is distraught because of Maria's ruin, but Susan is thrilled to be going even though she knows everyone there will be miserable. In the evening, Scott read "A Christmas Carol." It was SRO. I definitely prefer to spend as much of my day as possible in the 19th century.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

First Sunday of Advent

We had a lovely breakfast at Joanna's after Mass. Peggy brought us a fantastic tea towel from the new Titanic museum in Belfast. (For those who have not seen the movie recently, that's where "she" was built.) Not pictured: tonight after Mass, I was loudly saying "now, if I made my own tomato sandwich" when M shushed me because the Parlors were full of young adults beginning their evening of Advent reflection. Oops.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Advent 2014

It's time once again for my illustrated Advent adventure, this time aided by the iPad. Happy Advent, readers!

Friday, November 28, 2014

More family time

Today we had the family over for Thanksgiving leftovers. Zizi tried to color with all 96 crayons at the same time.

Zizi also tried to fit into Cash's baby seat. There seemed to be some two-year-old psychology going on.

Cash enjoyed looking at pictures from when his mommy was his age.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

More from Thanksgiving

It was great to see three of the amazing McDonell sisters together at Mass this morning.

They are really good with the poses.

Dinner was at Dana's this year. The shy little Z just hid her face in Auntie M's lap when she saw how many people were there for Thanksgiving.

On est servi.

Helping M play Wii skydiving after dinner.

Enjoying a really dull story about the first Thanksgiving which aunties bought at Plimoth Plantation many years ago in hopes of having a niece to read it to someday.
A sleepy girl looking for more olives in the cutest little red plaid dress you ever saw.

Not pictured: a cup of tea and a few rounds of 31 with the Smiths, the perfect ending to Thanksgiving Day.