Friday, August 23, 2019

Pink Roses

In the sunset light

As it is Friday, here are some of my roses for Floral Friday Photos

A special shade of pink

The pink one

Monday, August 19, 2019

Lourdes, close to Heaven

Lourdes, close to Heaven

We went on holidays. As my children say, mum only goes on holidays to places where there  are plenty of churches. That's true. I like the landscape, trees, flowers, nice houses, fresh air but without churches no holiday is good enough for me.

So we went to Lourdes. We has everything booked, plane tickets and hotel, since January - or was it last December ? Anyway, we did it a long time ago. We counted our days and it looked as if there was years before those dreamt holidays in France.

Let me tell you. I went to Paris with my husband in honeymoon, which was like hundreds years ago. The girls never went there or any part of France. England, Spain and Italy several times they did but not France. One of them even went to Morocco and other to Ireland and now it was time to go to France but we didn't go to Lourdes only to go to France, it was the opposite way.

The Catholic world knows Lourdes, if not more, at least the name. It's a town in France, in the Pyrenees, where in the 19th century Our Lady appeared to a girl called Bernadette Soubirous. People interested in the matter can read about it here. It's the recount of the Apparitions. On the history of the place, please go here to know more about it. I can even leave here an excerpt: "Located in the Pyrenees Mountain region of France, Lourdes is the home of one of the most important shrines in the Catholic Faith: the Grotto of Massabielle. Approximately five million pilgrims, of whom a great number are sick or handicapped, come to Lourdes each year. It may be through curiosity, through a desire for a physical cure, in a movement towards belief, or to be of service to those who suffer, that they come to drink the water from the Holy Spring. "

So we went. 

The beauty of its surrounding it's astonishing. Mountains and mountains everywhere we look covered in a delicious green, many times smoothed with fog. The quality of the air and all the beauty around us makes that place a delight for the senses.

And then there is the spiritual side, which makes most people who go there.
I must say that I knew about the Apparitions since I was a child and, as a grown up, I always wanted to go there but the trip was not that easy as we would have to go to Paris and, from there, take the train to the town. But some months ago we had a delightful surprise: direct flights to Lourdes ! We booked at once. And last month we went.

I knew about Lourdes and I even went to interactive maps to know the way to the hotel and to the Sanctuary and all but what I didn't know was what we feel there. I didn't knew what I would feel there ! The strong sense of spiritual is amazing. Only going there we can understand what we feel in Lourdes - and I am used to go to Fátima, so tell be about spiritual !

As Catholics we were so happy to go and we knew it would be wonderful, what we didn't know was that it would be even more wonderful that we could dream. It was like to be in Heaven. The people there, most of them, knew well what they were doing there, they were pilgrims, not tourists. It feels really good to be amongst people like us.

Here we can see the candle procession minutes before its beginning. Every evening at 9 pm there is a Procession with a huge crowd.

Another daily Procession is the one of the Blessed Sacrament from which I almost have no pictures because, due to the most intense sense of the presence of God, I almost haven't took any and the few I have are from the end of the Procession, inside of one of the Basilicas, at the Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and Benediction and from before it started. 

I will leave you mainly with pictures of the outdoors. This crown is the exterior of the cupola of the Basilica of the Rosary. Inside there are fifteen altars with "paintings" representing each one of the Mysteries of the Rosary. I wrote paintings in comas because they are not really paintings, they were made with tiny mosaic. A most astonishing thing !

The church on the right side is called Basilica of the Immaculate Conception. We can see also the dome and entrance of the Basilica of the Rosary on the left. 
Look at those stairs. We climbed it but decided that next time we would go by the ramp !

There are ramps on each side full of statues. In this image we can see Saint Anne and young Our Lady. From here we can have amazing views of the river and surroundings.

The Basilica of the Immaculate Conception and the entrance to the Basilica of the Rosary.

It's unforgetable ! I think I must make another post, another day, so you may see more of Lourdes. And maybe you will want to go there. You will not regret it.

Partying at:
Inspire me Tuesday at A  Stroll Thru Life
Travel Tuesday at Intelliblog
Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life
Grace at Home at Imparting Grace

Friday, August 16, 2019

A French Hydrangea

French Hydrangea  

As I posted before  - and I will post more next days - we went to Lourdes, France for our Summer holidays and it was even better that we could antecipate. There everything is beautiful. Nature is so lush there, everywhere we look we find beauty.
These hydrangeas we found in the garden of our hotel. So pretty, aren't they ?

Joining :
Floral Friday Photos
Anything Goes Pink Saturday
My Sunday Best Meme

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Solemnity of the Assumption of Mary - 15 August

The Assumption of Mary

Altar in Lourdes, France, in the Basilica of the Rosary, made with little mosaics, representing the Assumption of Our Lady to Heaven.

On Lourdes I will post something tomorrow or the day after.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Yes, that true - but not this week.

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Wait ! It's still Christmas

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No, it's not yet time to take the decorations down. Christmas will NOT end till the 6 of January when it will be the Epiphany. That's right, the day when we celebrate the adoration the wise men did to the Infant Jesus and gave to him gold, incense and myrrh.
Then we will take the decorations down, will put the Christmas tree and Nativity scene in the attic or whatever place you keep those things till next December.

We are having a wonderful Christmas, thanks God and we had a very good transition from the old year to the new. The First of January was wonderful too with all the family, parents and sister and brother included, together with in laws and nephew. Thanks be to God.
Such a pity that I was so busy that I completely forgot to take pictures of the wonderful meals. Oh, well, never mind, the important part was that we were happy and giving thanks to Our Lord from Whom all things come.

And now I will leave you with the song of the Twelve Days of Christmas and it's meaning.

“The Twelve Days of Christmas” celebrates the official Christmas season which starts liturgically on Christmas Day and ends twelve days later on the Feast of the Epiphany.
 “My true love” refers to God, “me” is the individual Catholic. 
The “twelve lords a leaping” are the twelve basic beliefs of the Catholic Church as outlined in the Apostles Creed. 
The “eleven pipers piping” are the eleven Apostles who remained faithful after the treachery of Judas. 
The “ten ladies dancing” are the Ten Commandments. 
The “nine drummers drumming” are the nine choirs of angels which in those days of class distinction were thought important. 
The “eight maids a milking” are the Eight Beatitudes. 
The “seven swans a swimming” are the Seven Sacraments.
The “six geese a laying” are the Six Commandments of the Church or the six days of creation. 
The “five golden rings” are the first five books of the Old Testament called the Torah which are generally considered the most sacred and important of all the Old Testament. 
The “four calling birds” are the Four Gospels. 
The “three French hens” are the Three Persons in God or the three gifts of the Wise Men. 
The “two turtle doves” represent the two natures in Jesus: human and divine or the two Testaments, Old and New. 
The “partridge” is the piece de resistance, Jesus himself, and the “pear tree” is the Cross.


Joining TFT at Katherines Corner

Monday, December 17, 2018

Shopping and wrapping

Since October I have been Christmas shopping and a lot of shopping I did !
As I work full time, I have mostly Saturdays and Sundays for doing it so yesterday, after Mass, I head for the mall and stay there for a couple hours or more and I have lunch, or a kind of it, on the way, between shops, because I had no time to lose.

I'm quite pleased as I managed to buy things for all even if I intend to go back to buy some more. A lot  of money was spent but I did it wisely and I am very happy with myself. I don't buy on expensive shops and I always can find nice things for a good money.
I was so lucky that I managed to buy already most things.
We are a big family for European standards. Add to my children my parents, sisters and brothers, real and in law, and nephew and you'll have a lot of people to buy presents for and around the table on the days of Christmas.

So I have been wrapping ! I'm saying this all victorious because I'm doing a good job: instead of postponing day after day on wrapping I have began already and very well I am in that.
Even if I intend to buy more, I must say that I bought already quite a lot of presents. I will not leave them to last hour marathons, I began already and a lot of them are wrapped.
Oh, happiness.

I intend to keep posting about the antics of Christmas time being it shopping, wrapping, planning and cooking.

Isn't this a wonderful time of the year ?! I give thanks.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Our Lady of Guadalupe Feast Day

Yes, today is Our Lady of Guadalupe Feast Day.
If you heard of it but don't know what that means, go here and read.

Last 8 of December was the Immaculate Conception Feast Day and the anniversary of my Baptism.
Notice how both images have the crescent moon at Her feet.

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Detail of Her face.

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Christmas food

Every part of the earth has it's own food for Christmas and even in each country there are differences depending on each home.
Well, in my family, as in all families in this corner of the world, on the Christmas Eve dinner, we eat cod with boiled potatoes and "grelos".

Some people prefer cabbage. We always must have cabbage soup that we call Caldo Verde. This it's a must have.

In some parts of the North of the country people also eat  octopus rice. Oh, that is good too. Sometimes I make it for lunch. Maybe this year I will have it for diner. Uhm, good idea.

For Christmas lunch many people have turkey but it's not mandatory, not like the cod for Christmas Eve dinner, together with the Caldo Verde.

And desserts...

I haven't any pictures of past Christmas Eve dinners, I wonder why.
This year I will be more careful about dinner pictures.


All the pictures, except the first one, were found searching the internet, they are not mine and I found them after looking for some free photos.

Partying at:
Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life

Monday, November 26, 2018

You are not behind

Talking of homemaking I had been in a roller coaster for years: sometimes things went well, sometimes they didn't.
Even being a working outside woman with four children everything went well - or pretty close - till I had a change in my working times and everything went down the drain.
Add to the mixture several depressions along the years. Do I need to say that I still struggle ? But I have good news, I'm getting better and better.

Now I try to remember several times a day that Flylady says that there is no such thing as falling off the wagon. Jump in where you are, she says, you are not behind ! And do you know something ? She is right.
My house is getting better and better and I am too.
If this house - that is your real house and your body, in and out - is in need of a good tidying, don't feel down, just jump in. You are not behind !

I saw a post I did years ago when I was looking back to some goals and difficulties I had and I must say some are done and others I still struggle with.

Let's see them:

- To get up at 6.15
Oh, well, I don't need it anymore now that the girls have grown, no babies anymore and they help with their clothes and all so I don't need to get up that early.
Don't I ? That's why the clothes are piling to be folded and put away, not to mention other chores in the house.
So I will now have again that goal of getting up early and have some work done before going to work.
Maybe not waking up at 6.15 for now, later but not late and trying to get up a little earlier bit by bit till reaching the most convenient hour - and maybe that hour is not 6.15.
Even so, the "she rises when is still night" is still very important to me.

- To fold 40 pieces of clothing everyday
Just let us aim to 20 and we will see how things go.

- To put away those folded clothes everyday instead of leaving it in the basket.
Very good goal, I must say. I do like to do the laundry, to wash it, to put it on the line, to pick it up and, sometimes, to fold it. To put away is my struggle. I must work on it. Again.

-Declutter the Laundryroom everyday a little bit.
Major problem, the laundryroom, for years. Some time ago, and I mean just months ago, I managed with the help of my eldest, to have the dreaded laundryroom done. But you know what? Things are not anymore as good as they were. I really must do some work there. Again.

- Pray the Rosary everyday
That is very important ! I always prayed the Rosary but I must say that some days went on without it. Not good as Our Lady in Fátima said to pray it everyday.
Do you know what? I now pray the Rosary everyday without failing a single day ! This is going for months and months now ! And I can see the results. Do you doubt it ? Ok, just try it and you will see.
Most people just have things for granted and there is no much prayer in their life. I always had and I'm having more and more prayer in my life, thanks God.

I can see that I still struggle with some of those problems but I'm very pleased to see that on some others I am better.
And what about the others that I didn't mention here ? I jumped in and I'm getting better and better.
Yes, I'm not behind !

Partying at :
Dishing it & Digging it at Angie the Freckled Rose
Amaze me Monday at Dwellings
Inspiration Monday at Refresh Restyle
Inspire me Tuesday at A Stroll Thru Life
Home and Garden Thursday at A Delightsome Life

Thursday, November 22, 2018


Image result for bountiful norman rockwell

Once upon a time my husband, who was not yet my husband, and who had been in the US years before to take his Master degree and had been living after it in Europe, organized a Thanksgiving lunch for me.
We were just aquainted not even really friends, but as he has a serious interest in me, he thought that lunch would be a good way to make us closer.
It did. The lunch had several people and I thought I was only one more, I hardly knew then that it was made for me.
I must say that it was a good idea and things went very well after that, in such a way that one year later, on Thanksgiving Day, we were already married.
That's why I like Thanksgiving, even if I'm not american.


I keep posting the above painting of Norman Rockwell on each Thanksgiving because I do like it. More than the perfect American Dream is the Family Christian Dream as it's so beautiful to see the family around the table,  everybody happy, everything nice and tidy. Quite perfect.


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This one is so beautiful too, isn't it ?

Happy ThanksGiving to all !


And now talking about the real First Thanksgiving, you may read about it here.

Linking at Share your Style - 21 Rosemary Lane

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

In Christmas mode

Image result for norman rockwell christmas paintings

I have been thinking on posting since yesterday so I am here now to announce:

I am in Christmas Mode

I sing Rudolph all day long, I plan the presents, the menu for the Christmas days (24 and 25), some spruce up work my house needs...
How can a person not to be happy with the holidays ahead ?
We must prepare everything with time so we will not be stressed.

I intended to wrap some presents I bought already - to say the truth I began in the end of September - but as I work outside I could not find some extra time for that yet.

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Christmas time ! Such a beautiful time.
Let's give thanks to Our Lord for everything.

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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

A fridge story

So now I will tell you about my fridge, or I should say fridges.

Years ago we moved. Our fridge was old and small and we needed a new one.
There I went to chose one and I came home very happy with a nice fridge that was much bigger, pretty and new. And it worked very well.

Years later, not many, we moved again and the new house had a fridge already, the kind that we look at it and it sembles a armário but we open it and it's a fridge and a freezer.
I didn't want at all to loose my old new fridge and my husband said that we should keep it because in a big family two fridges and two freezers would not be too much. And he was right.

Now, many years later, the one that was already in the house decided to not be cold inside at all. A man to fix it was called and he proclaimed that the money to make an old fridge and freezer work would be better spent in a new one. We agreed.

Now enters the one that we brough with us. He still works well but we made a big decision and some not yet done decisions are to be made.
I will explain.
We went to the shop to see new fridges as the one that stopped working and realized that for the price of one like that we would have another very good, big and not so expensive that would not be inside a armário. We decided then to buy a normal one -we stil didn't do it - and transform the armário where is the old one that must go to the rabbish. It wil be a proper armário. Yay ! I'm really happy with my decision.
We will keep the old one and buy a new one just not one inside a armário. Ah, that empty space transformed in a armário. I'm already thinking on the big help it will be because it will be a place, as Winnie the Pooh said, to put things in.

Then I began thinking: what about, instead of having two fridges, if we had just one but big ?

Oh, well, I couldn't decide yet. I will tell you when I do.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Adventures in the laundry room

This is my old washer and I will tell you her story.

When we married and later when we had our older children in their younger years, we had a washer, as everybody does, no big deal in that. The problem is that with time she became making frequent visits to the man who repaired washers.

Then, tired of those visits, we decided that was time to buy a new one. My husband decided that we had to have one that was a dryer at the same time as it would save space. So we bought two in one.

It has quite a lot of years now and we had to call the repair man some four times and another: the first ones were because with the years going by either was the dryer that didn't dry ( it happened only once), or that the tube where the water went to the washer was dry and the other was that it was the tube where the water went out, which it happened the same thing to the other one. Another time was that the rubber in the oppening was too dry already and leaked a little water.
Then, and this time was much worse, the mecanism that was the heart of the machine decisions and programs was tired and stopped to work - which I understood as it was already getting old.
The repair man was called and he deliberated that it was such a good machine, a good brand (Zanussi) and we should repair it instead of thinking on buying a new one. Well, ok, we accepted.

Now, some two or three years past, it stopped working. It began with a big bang and the basket was a bit loose but it still worked. Now it stopped.
The repair man was called again and he said that, to be honest, he had to tell me that it's better to buy a new one because that repair would be too expensive to an old washer.

Now that I must buy a new one I decided that I don't want a special brand at all, I only want one that works and is not fussy and no way of buying a dryer at all as we have plenty of sun and we hardly use the drier. That's final !

I will keep you posted on next episodes.

Monday, January 15, 2018

The eagle

Now I will tell you a true story about an eagle.

A man once found an eagle lying on the floor. She was hurt and couldn't fly, one of her wings was broken - or maybe just very hurt, I don't remember.
That man picked up the eagle and took her to his home.
He took care of her for a long time. 
She, being an eagle and being used to fly, kept trying to raise her wings and fly...but for no avail because she was hurt, she couldn't fly at all.
So she remained on the floor.
As she was getting better due to the care the man, she began getting better and better and at last she could, she was able to fly because she was a eagle and they are meant to fly. The reason she was on the ground for some time was that she was hurt and frail. 
But she didn't give up, she waited till she was healed. She kept trying and trying till she could fly again.
She had stopped flying not because she was meant to be on the floor but because she was not well, but then, because she was an eagle, she was able to fly !

Along the years I have been feeling that I was, I am that eagle. For a long time I felt down but so many times I wanted to fly, I had the urge to be who I really am and tried to fly... but this broken wing didn't let me...and I didn't fly.
The amount of times I tried and the times I left the ground and believed I could ... but I fell down again. Sometimes I even was able to get up off the floor and fly a little and such nice flights they were but they were short because of the pain that didn't let me fly as I wanted. And I fell down again.
But I am a survivor and I'm much better and who knows, maybe my wing is healed now.

And no, it's not too late. I've been climbing this mountain for long so I will reach the summit. It's not that I took too long, it's that the mountain is really high. There were not lost years, were years I spent climbing. I went up and sometimes I fell back a little but I didn't give up so I will not believe that I can't get there, because I can !

Now I will make this eagle fly.