So, Hurricane Sandy!
|That's my cousin surveying the wreckage of the amusement|
park in her hometown (photo from the local Star-Ledger newspaper)
All my family members are fine, with minimal (or no) property damage. Not all of my friends were so blessed, though. I ask your prayers for two families:
First family has 3 kids under 4. Dad posted on facebook after the storm: "Our new guest is a real stiff. He broke the shower, killed half the deck, and won't even let us into the attic! Now he's letting the rain in." And also, "We TRIED telling the tree it was too big for our shower, but it just wouldn't listen." They hope to be able to move back into their home in a month and a half.
Second family has 2 kids under 4 (both adorable, precocious little girls). Completely lost their house in the storm. I don't have many details, but I presume it was flooded, as they think it may be possible to salvage some items, maybe. Not only do they need a place to live for several months (living with grandparents now), but also basic essentials like boots for the girls and work clothes for the dad.
PLEASE keep these families in your prayers! As well as everyone living without heat until probably the middle of next week. While Jersey gets a hurricane every year or two, this was a much more devastating hurricane than probably any in living memory.
Funny story about the hurricane, though. When the storm stopped, my bachelor uncle immediately started volunteering for the Red Cross in his area, being able-bodied and with no dependents. A few days later, he learned that his part of town had power again, so the first thing he did was call my grandma, who's been staying with my folks, and invite her to come down to his place and use his heat. Next thing he did was tell his supervisor that he needed to run home to warm up the house for his mom.
Supervisor didn't want to let him go. You'd think, this is volunteering, how on earth can she compel him to stay? I don't know, but apparently they went back and forth several times, until finally my uncle looked her in the eye and said:
"Look, I'm afraid of you. But I'm more afraid of my mother."
"I'll see you in an hour."
My grandmother will be telling this story until the day she dies.
Carved a pumpkin this week for the first time in my life! It was surprisingly fun. I can understand why people might make this an annual tradition.
|Michelle was kind enough to share her book of pumpkin designs to trace. It's the only reason my pumpkin looks so good!|
(Note our matching pumpkin-cats!)
We have joked on Dad's side of the family that every now and again, in the right context or after the right number of drinks, we'd discover a new relative or some other such data that we thought we ought to know.
New to the whole family this week: My grandmother had a modeling career (presumably before she got married?). I mean, we knew homecoming queen, student body president, etc. But modeling?
When I delivered this to my sister, I discovered something else that was news to me: Our grandfather spent a year in Utah at some point in his pre-married life! When he told this to my sister and cousin, they were kids, and so didn't internalize a lot of the details. What does one do in Utah? Ski. Who lives in Utah? Mormons. Thus, now that my grandfather has passed away and all we have to go on is their childhood memory of this conversation: Apparently he spent a year skiing with Mormons in Utah.
My 16-year-old Nissan Sentra, which still hasn't even broken 120,000mi, is finally completely dead. I finally took it to the mechanic this week, thinking that I could perhaps afford the repairs it surely needed, based on all the new noises and vibrations it was making.
You know it's bad when your mechanic lists off at least eight problems with your car, including two disparate brake repairs that need to be done before it's even safe to drive, then calls the beast "a hot mess."
|Do widzenia, Janek!|
(In English: Bye, Johnny!)
Gladly accepting assistance (prayerful or otherwise) in the car shopping department, especially since I have neither time nor interest in so doing.
So, a couple months back a friend booked me to give a talk on the Year of Faith to the young adult group at her parish. I've been so slammed with work that I haven't started formally preparing the talk yet (which I knew would happen), but as questions come in from attendees and I'm making mental notes about context, it's becoming fun (again, as I knew it would). In general, I kind of find faith to be a bewilderingly vague topic, but I am finding that the additional context of this holy year is filling in the gaps. I'm becoming pretty excited about this talk, and, by extension, the Year of Faith! (Better late than never, eh?)
To close, I leave you with a chant that last night's Requiem Mass reminded me is still one of my favorites, and one of the ways Our Lord communicates His love and affection directly to my heart.
English translation here.
I'm a day late, but the rest of these are at ConversionDiary.com!