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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Lenten Reflections

Well, we almost removed all of the thorns.  It has had a good impact on our entire family though.  The idea of taking out the thorns and making sacrifices to grow closer to Christ has even gotten through to the 3 year old.  On Easter Sunday, Eleanor came up to me and said in her Elmer-fuddish little voice, "Mommy, I want to make Jesus happy.  Give me a job to do so I can take out a thorn."  She obediently cleaned up some toys, I checked her work, and we took out a thorn.  Making Lenten sacrifices is something that we've all struggled with this past season, especially me.

Just a few thorns (sacrifices) remaining before we can start to add the flowers where the thorns once were.
I began the season of Lent with the joyous secret of a tiny life inside of me.  Just as we were preparing to share our news, we suffered through a miscarriage.  Surely, I thought, this was my Lenten sacrifice.  What further need was there for me to give up candy or deprive myself in other ways?  God had already taken my little one to be with Him.  I continued on with this attitude and kind of "blew off" the idea of any further sacrifice for a couple of weeks. Then, the weekend before Holy Week, a mom in my home school co-op posted some thoughts on a message board that she'd been struggling with and it really made me think....what is it that God has asked of me and what is it that I have willingly given to Him?  There is, after all, a tremendous difference.  I did not volunteer my miscarriage, rather it was something God volunteered me for.  While it was (and is still) a huge sacrifice and growth experience, it was not something that I willed to happen.  This realization was HUGE for me.  My Holy Week took an amazing turn for the better and our home was filled with love, peace, prayer, and reflection...well, as much as it could be with 6 children ages 10 and under with a husband out of town for the week! :-)

Our Easter day was amazing!  We attended the sunrise Mass and it was beautiful. The sun was shining and the birds were chirping away as we walked into church.
The Krafts after Easter Mass. Joseph could not stop fiddling with his tie!

After Mass, we came home and had a lovely breakfast of egg bake, fruit salad and resurrection rolls.  Then we changed out of our Sunday best and headed out for an egg hunt in the lovely Spring-like (finally!) weather.

Esther enjoyed the egg hunt so much that the only way to get her to voluntarily come back inside was to leave a trail of eggs to the door!

We had a lovely young neighbor couple and their son over for dinner.  After eating, we had this yummy lamb cake and ice cream for dessert.  This is the first year that I made a lamb cake and it was a hit!  It will definitely become a part of our Easter dinner tradition!

It actually turned out pretty well, if I do say so myself!
And, we can't forget about the resurrection scene.  We made the cave last year.  It was a time consuming project involving ply-wood, chicken wire, many layers of paper mache, and spray paint.  Since that was done, we made the resurrection set of paper dolls from Catholic Icing.  The kids had a great time with it and are still having fun playing/acting out the Easter story.  After all, the Easter season is 50 days long.  That's even longer than Lent!
The empty tomb and resurrection characters sit atop our mantle with the "Alleluia" banner!
I hope that your Easter was as joyous and filled with wonderful memories as ours.

God Bless!

Heather :-)