Friday, April 29, 2011

Quick Takes

Joining Jen's Quick Takes for another week:


So, how's your Eastertide going? I have heard from a lot of people that this Lent was particularly hard, either in terms of their Lenten sacrifices being more challenging than anticipated, or because they did not feel the season had been as spiritually fruitful as they expected, or believed it should have been. I wonder, will it follow that their Easter season be more uplifting because of a greater struggle more to get there, or (God forbid) will they be disappointed with Easter as they were with Lent?

Me, I kind of feel as though my Lent was a wash. I'm pregnant, so I couldn't fast; we gave up desserts and sweets but took Sundays off. I tried to pray more, but I often fell asleep if I held still too long. With alms, my right hand did okay and my left hand just kind of played along. I just didn't feel that I was sacrificing much of anything. I guess you could count the pregnancy itself as a sacrifice: I keenly feel (as does probably every pregnant woman) how with every child I am offering my body as a living sacrifice. But that's not only Lent--that's life. I just felt I should be doing more for Lent.

But on Easter Sunday my husband started a little ritual that will, I hope, outlive the Easter season. (It is a continuation in spirit, I think, of what I tried to do every Sunday when I was having my root beer or my peach sorbet, saying to myself, "This is a little Easter, praise Jesus who has died and risen for us." Not usually in so many words.) He will spontaneously say, "Christ is risen!" and I (and anyone else nearby) will respond, "Alleluia!" Sometimes it will be the fuller "Christ is risen! Alleluia, Alleluia!" and "Thanks be to God! Alleluia, Alleluia!" No matter what our mood or feelings, the battle is won and Christ shares his victory with us. I'm becoming more and more a believer in what are basically prayers of the will, like this.

I hope your Easter season is glorious!

The rest of my takes will be quicker, I promise. :-)


On a lighter note, about Easter candy: I am not going to get into a discussion about what is the best Easter candy, what is obligatory, what can't be borne no matter how traditional it is, but I would like to draw your attention to one little gem: Starburst jelly beans. These are not typical like the "jellybird eggs" (I still made sure to get those--I gotta have my black jelly beans!) or gourmet jelly beans. In fact, I don't think of these other jelly beans as particularly Easter-y, although since we don't really buy candy I don't know if they are available at other times of the year. But these Starburst jelly beans are so scrumptious--they have twice the flavor of anything else in our baskets, and that flavor is so tangy and fruity, better even than regular Starburst candy (which I love). They have become a regular yearly treat.


Have you read The Seven Silly Eaters? We got this book when we did in fact have seven little silly eaters of our own. Recently I got the idea to see if we could make a cake like the one they made in the book. I knew that the "method" the Peterson children followed would need a little adjusting, so I did a search and sure enough! I turned up this recipe by the author.

Sorry no final pictures--we had a few things happen in between turning it out and eating it up. It was lovely, though, with a cream cheese white icing. I'm thinking next time will be a poke cake with a lemon glaze all over it...mmm.


In light of the Royal Wedding today (I've watched only part of it so far), I will point out these two--opposing, you might say--opinion pieces about the relevance it has for us. For me, I will say that I am a romantic who tries to be a realist, and that I hope and pray for their happiness and success in marriage. I have friends who lived together before their marriage, and as much as their situations may have pained me, it did not tempt me to be some sort of doomsayer about their chances together or lessen my joy for them when they finally took the plunge. If the statistical deck is stacked against them--meaning my friends or the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge or whomever--well, every couple is different, and every one of us benefits from a little more prayer.


This is appropos of today (kind of). We enjoyed the movie Megamind; one of the laugh lines was when the puffed up villain gave a little monologue berating the heroine for being naive. He said, "There is no Easter Bunny, there is no Tooth Fairy, and there is no Queen of England." No Queen of England--ha ha, right?

Well, later I was reading a review of another movie (don't remember which one) and in the comments was someone protesting how, strictly speaking, the current monarch in England is properly referred to as the Queen of Great Britain rather than the Queen of England. I looked it up a little further and found out that, apparently, the last "Queen of England" was Anne Stuart in the 1700s.

Even now I still can't watch that line without laughing.


Speaking of movies, we have recently obtained the movie Tangled.

Our day lilies are blooming.

The kids noticed a resemblance between the magic flower and the lilies. They picked one the other day and ran around singing, "Flower, gleam and glow" and saying, "Mom! My headache/head bump/other hurt/boo-boo feels better now!" It was all surprisingly charming. It's nice to have a little touch of magic now and then.


Please pray for the tornado-struck regions in the South. We were lucky: our immediate area had no damage, and relatives closer to the swath of destruction are okay as well. But it's heartbreaking to see the headlines and the pictures, to read the headlines of grief and despair. This week of mercy, please lift up the dead and the bereaved in a special way.

1 comment:

Margaret in Minnesota said...

My kids received both Megamind and Tangled in their Easter baskets and have watched both of them twice so far. It is to Tangled's credit that I sat for the entire movie--THOROUGHLY enjoyed it.

Happy Easter! :)


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