Planting Fields - May 29

Outside of Coe Hall

Cute little cottage-y wall thing

Another view of the garden by Coe Hall

Mom and Dad's Visit

Mom and Dad came to visit us for most of Memorial Day weekend. It was great to have them over, and now that we have a little extra room, it's more comfortable for everyone to spend a full weekend.

Some of the highlights include a stroll through one of the local arboretums on Long Island, a trip to Friendly's for some coffee milkshakes, a game of Trivial Pursuit (the Millenium Edition), and dinner with the in-laws (the Girl's parents and two of her brothers) to celebrate my brother-in-law's birthday.

It was a lot of fun to spend time with Mom and Dad. It's a bit different when your parents stop telling you what to do and when to do it, but start becoming more like friends or advisors instead. It's not a bad thing, but it's a big change from childhood. I am fortunate to have both my parents, and to get along with them. And they get along with my wife and her family too, so it makes for a much better time.

Hopefully we will head South again at some point soon, but maybe we'll wait until the weather is less muggy...we'll see what happens!

Happy Memorial Day!

Thank you to all the men and women that gave their lives to protect our freedom!

Summer Picnic

Today, we are having a picnic for some of the students from a club at school. I think the faculty is more excited about the picnnic then the kids. I find it interesting that many of them have no understanding of what a picnic is.

Where I grew up, we had picnics...It was always exciting to eat sandwiches outside and play games with eachother. As a wedding gift, we got a real picnic basket. (Unfortunately, it resides at my parents house right now.)

For our picnic today, we have a cooler, a drink cooler, a folding chair and a folding table. Some of the kids brought snacks. I am going to run out during lunch and grab some watermelon and drink mix. It should be a bunch of fun.

When I was thinking about this picnic, I couldn't help but remember the picnic in Anne of Green Gables. It was absolutely BEAUTIFUL! I loved they wonderful dresses they wore and the the excitement they had over things like lemonade and ice cream.

Can you imagine??

For those of you out there that have encountered storm devastation you can relate:

Our school is linked to several other schools in the area. One of the schools nearby is closing in the Fall. They have already broken the news to the families and faculty members. Due to the amount of rain we have had over the past week, their school is literally falling down. Therefore, the students and faculty will relocate to our building for the next week. God willing they will return to their building after Memorial Day.

This morning the "Little People" arrived. Reactions from our students included, "Miss, this is like living in Gulliver's Travels!". It is very different having little people around because their reaction to the world around them is so different. Things like an automatic paper towel dispenser intrigue them. They are afraid that the toilet might eat them. They walk through the halls with their quiet finger over their mouths. Several Freshmen have declared, "THEY ARE JUST SO CUTE!". 

I am glad we were able to open our school to these students and their faculty. We are lucky enough to have a building that can withstand rain storms and have a few extra classrooms to accommodate them. It is a nice experience for our students to be able to help with the preparations and see that little things can make a big difference in the lives of those around them.

Watching and waiting

I cannot imagine the feelings how difficult it must be for the people living along the mississippi river. A woman was interviewed on the radio this morning and she was saying that they are basically waiting for the house to flood. They know it is going to happen and it is only a matter of time.

Is it easier to know that you are going to lose your home then to be surprised by it? To be quite frank, neither situation is "easy". I feel like I am a planner and would like to know that it is going to happen so, I can attempt to "do" something about it.

Many people are making sandbags. How many sandbags will be enough?

Others have abandoned their homes taking with them their prized possessions. Will they regret this decision?

Still others are staying in their homes and praying that if it be God's will their homes will be spared.

What approach would I take? I probably would take a little bit from each.

While I was floating around the internet, I found this prayer. Perhaps this will help those who are not sure what to do.

Lord, my mind is racing with possibilities as I wait for news. Quiet my mind and lessen my anxiety during this time of waiting.  I turn this situation over to Your care, confident that You will bring a quick and positive result according to Your will.  Amen.

The residents along the banks of the Mississippi know that in many cases their home will be destroyed. All they can do is wait. Pray for these people during this difficult time.

Waiting is one of my least favorite things. What do you do while you are waiting?

Candidacy Mass

We have been awaiting information from my brother regarding his Candidacy Mass for the Diocese of Rockville Centre. On Tuesday night, we learned that his Mass will be held on June 5th. Unfortunately, we do not have the time yet. We are assuming that it will be an 11 am Mass.

My brother has been in the Catholic seminary since he left high school. He first was at a seminary in NY and has moved to the Theological College in Washington D.C. This coming year he will be assigned to Rome. This brings many changes for our family since he will be unable to come home except for: birth, death, and marriage. My parents are learning to use Skype and many of us are getting passports for our trip to Italy.

Rain, rain, go away!

This has been one of the chilliest, rainiest Mays ever!

Maspeth Farmer's Market started last Thursday. It was fantastic! I LOVE farmer's markets. Last year, the hubby and I went to the Green Market in Union Square. Since we moved, we are no longer able to get to Union Square easily.

The farmer's mark in Maspeth is on Thursday from 3pm - 7pm. It is lots of fun! There is a great dairy vendor that has fantastic cheese, chocolate milk, and wine. The wines comes from a nearby vineyard.

On Friday, we enjoyed wine, cheese, and ravioli with two friends. It was fantastic! We had two types of ravioli. One was stuffed with portobello mushrooms and the other was stuffed with prosciutto and provolone. I can't wait to get more this Thursday!

How many Greeks does it take to fix a door?

So, our landlords are Greek. By Greek, I mean REALLY Greek. So, when we had to have our door fixed (it wouldn't close well), we had two Greek contractors come to the apartment. I was the only one home. It was our landlady and her husband, two Greek contractors, and I. I understood two words - catastrophe and WD - 40. Apparently, they use WD -40 to fix everything from a troubled door to the flu. My landlady thought this whole scenario was quite hilarious and was wondering, "How many Greeks does it take to fix a door?"

I often feel like I am living in My Big Fat Greek Wedding but, it is quite hilarious. Yesterday, she offered us the use of the front yard for any BBQs we  may feel like having. I am wondering what her idea of a BBQ is. I have absolutely no intentions of putting an animal on a stick and roasting it in the yard but, some chicken cutlets on the BBQ might be nice. (First, we need to get a BBQ.)

We've Moved!

This Saturday it will be official. We have moved from Astoria to Fresh Meadows. We are still in Queens but, this area is much more residential and suburban. Our new apartment is bright, sunny, and very close to several large parks. We are grateful for all of those that helped us and provided us with boxes. Who knew in such a short time we would accumulate so much stuff!

The Lake
On our first weekend in our new home we took a walk through one of the larger parks and enjoyed the lake, turtles, and ducks. There were elderly Italian men playing bocce and several families enjoying a picnic. People were even fishing!

Our Front Yard
I have started running through the park in the afternoons when I am home from school. I am looking forward to relaxing by the lake in the summer months.

Over Memorial Day weekend, I may try to do the bike tour they are hosting.  We shall see...