The girls and I had a wonderful time at the monastery. (I hope to have a couple pictures soon...I have to rely on James' laptop to get them and I just plain forgot to transfer them to this pc.) The weather was perfect!
We helped the sisters a little each day with a new task. On Tuesday we raked and raked pine needles off of their big lawn. It only made me glad I don't have a big lawn. On Wednesday we cut dried flowers for soap. And on Thursday we cut and folded little tiny tags for soap. Kelsey Anna and Hannah were quite the troopers. They attended all but one 4:30AM service. Charissa and I did the first one and found that Charissa is just not ready for that kind of asceticism (good excuse for me, eh?) so we slept. I did rise fairly early though and took advantage of a VERY quiet guest house. It was a long time to be away from home though. Too long away from the boys (all 3) and away from my animals. I couldn't wait to get back to attending the livestock. They have goats and chickens at the monastery but they don't like help with them, much to Charissa's chagrin.
As stated in the title, I'm not back for long. On Friday the 11th, I hop on an airplane with my good friend Liz and we head to AZ. Our plans were to visit St. Paisius Monastery and our good friend, the novice, Sr. Brigid. I haven't seen her in over 2 years now and it will be so fun to do that. St. Paisius didn't have room for us on 2 of the nights we were going to be in AZ so we decided to extend our pilgrimage and visit St. Anthony's Greek Monastery as well. I feel unbelievably blessed to have this opportunity. And boy, to think, THREE monastery pilgrimages in one Lenten season. Unreal! Never again (oh, maybe 15 years from now) will I have this opportunity!!!
Thank you, my sweet husband for granting this opportunity to me. And I will take this time now to say Happy 14 blessed, growing, loving and amazing years!!!! We've come a long way! And may God grant us many, many more to come!!! I love you!!!
As we come nearer and nearer to the close of Lent I want to share this great verse I found in today's Proverbs reading. It is the answer to our struggles of fasting....all we need to do is gather more often for meals together!
Better is a dinner of herbs with friendship and grace, than a fatted calf with hostility. Proverbs 15:18
May your Lenten journey finish with great renewal.