Thursday, 8 January 2009

New Year blessings ... part 1

Before I get started, I just wanted to let you know that I have decided to split this post into a two-part series because I seem to have a lot more to chat about which has delayed me posting anything for a few days and I'm worried you might be frightened off trying to read a lengthy post?!!!!

From e-Catholic 2000 here is an example of a blessing we have incorporated as part of our family practice in recent years. The blessing we use is very similar but because I stumbled across this site the other day, I thought it might be nice to share it here.

+Epiphany Blessing Of A Home+

All make the Sign of the Cross.
Head of Household: "Peace be to this house and: to all who dwell here, in the name of the Lord.

All: Blessed be God forever.

Reader: In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be..... And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw his glory, the glory as of the Father's only Son, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1-3.14)

Using chalk, write on the outside of your house, above or next to an entrance:

(write the first half of the current year)

(write the other half of the year)

These words mean. "May Christ bless this house". (Each word could be written by a different member of the household.)

or optionally you may use the names of the Magi

(write the first half of the current year)
(write the other half of the year)

(Each name could be written by a different member of the household.)

All: Lord God of heaven and earth, you revealed your only begotten Son to every nation by the guidance of a star. Bless this house and all who inhabit it. May we be blessed with health, goodness of heart, gentleness and the keeping of your law. Fill us with the light of Christ, that our love for each other may go out to all. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
After taking down the tree as we do on Epiphany morn, we then hold our blessing. It was a simple yet beautiful ceremony.

I don't know what it is about having any kind of blessing, but there truly is a peaceful, welcoming calm that comes over one's wairua (spirit) ...

Over the summer break, I have been reading some wonderful blogs. I am constantly wowed by the efforts of other bloggers with beautfiully written postings, wonderful graphics, scrumptuous recipes, generous links to discover, spectacular photographs ... the list goes on !!! No wonder they have so many subscribers. Where they find the time to post so regularly I don't know, but I appreciate their dedication to share their thoughts, ideas and philosophies with others. Through reading other blogs I am the recipient of inspiration and enjoyment. It's an odd sensation to describe ... to feel a part of someone else's family without physically knowing them. I'm sure many out there will understand what I'm trying to say?!

By comparison, my blog is so far removed from the style and grace of others. Be that as it may, I must remind myself that I started our school blog simply to record our schooling journey with emphasis on what we achieve each week. Although I am tempted to journal like others, I am resigned to continue with my style of blogging. I will leave it to other bloggers to provide me with discussions about religion, methods of schooling, political debates etc.

I will endeavour to keep my postings chatty ... [queue imaginery thought-bubble] ... to somehow stimulate my readers and passersby with a style of conversation one has when visiting a friend over a cuppa. Or to put it simply ... to somehow create an engaging conversation about my child reading pages x, y and z within 30 minutes sound really exciting, lol.

Yes, I enjoy recording our journey, but by the same token, I enjoy keeping our private life very separate. I enjoy flicking over to our family blog where I can relax, use our names and terms my family relate to as sounding like Maree.

One thing that won't change is the fact that I will continue to regularly follow the blogs I enjoy and I will no doubt discover more throughout the coming year. I can pretty much guarantee I won't be trimming back the time spent looking at blogs, websites and links anyone posts on the yahoo groups. Quite frankly, it's a fun past-time. They can be so uplifting - especially on days when I feel uninspired or lack motiviation. The main thing is to feel comfortable with my approach to blogging and hopefully someone out there enjoys dropping by to have a cuppa with me.

Something else I have been enjoying over summer is our swimming pool. Absolute heaven! I feel so lucky to have a pool --> even if we don't have decking around it yet, we are able to enjoy something that feels very luxurious, indeed!!

By the way, would you believe me if I said I haven't had a swim in probably five or six years? Possibly even longer? Prior to starting a family I worked fulltime, availed myself on the weekends and any holiday periods when need be. As each child came along I continued to work and commenced my learning-curve into motherhood. My role was changing. Okay, so during that time I had been to at least ONE of sixteen lakes in the Rotorua District and a few nearby beaches, but other than dabbling my feet in as I walked along, that was about the best I achieved. Now that my role has completely changed and we have our very own pool, I have had MORE swims this summer than I have done in years and I am absolutely loving it.

I have to tell you a funny story though.

WARNING: DO NOT go shopping for togs on New Year's Day.

Why's that, Maree?

Because you head to the aisle that has bikinis, promptly toddle off to the changing rooms, try the items on and suddenly that smile of excitement knowing you're about to purchase a swimsuit for the first time in years, suddenly depresses you because - hello! wake up call!!!!! you're a mother now with a motherly shaped body!!!! You don't suit - let alone fit - into a bikini without folds overlapping places you'd rather not mention!!!! Sullenly I return the items to their racks and find the aisle with TOGS ... size 14, not 10 or 12 anymore. [sigh]

Oh well, it didn't take long for me to get over it. As soon as we got home, I changed into my new costume and entered the pool excitedly. Wow! What a feeling. What sheer delight ... and not one concern about the fact I'm wearing togs. No, I just squealed with delight and enjoyed being in water. Beautiful.

Blessed to have whaiāipo in my life

There are many people that I feel blessed to have in my life. But I thank the Lord that circumstances came about all those years ago that brought whaiāipo into my life. Quite easily our paths may never have crossed, so I thank Him for blessing my life and allowing me the privilege to meet the perfect man for me. There are many attributes I could list - and I probably should - but the main thing I wish to mention during this summer season, is how resourceful and talented whaiāipo is.

My Jack-of-all-trades will help others when he can, but more importantly of course, he takes care of things for his family. Sometimes we can't afford tools or equipment to build or fix something, and sometimes of course he will reinvent the wheel and make the tool he needs. Whaiāipo takes care of everything around the home ...

from installing our pool together with pump etc
to using what he needs to get a job done, lol

Okay, I think I'll leave my part one of my post here. I've drafted more, but rather than end up with one very long, long, LONG post I'll split it up and return with some more thoughts shortly.

Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

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