7 Quick Takes – Lent Edition

1. This is David’s first ‘real’ Lent and yesterday we sat down and discussed it. We had covered prayer, fasting, and almsgiving in his CCE class (and he remembered them all!) and so we brainstormed together different ways he could do these during Lent.

(Sneaky little booger tried to give up reading lessons for ‘fasting’. Also baths and wearing shoes. Is this normal for five? I didn’t think this picked up until around age eight.)

We finally got an acceptable list of six: a family rosary, praying Lauds and Vespers with Mommy, earning money to put in his Rice Bowl, playing nicely with his brother, fasting from television, and fasting from complaining. Two each, fasting, prayer, and almsgiving. Every morning he rolls 1d6 to choose that day’s penance. So far it’s worked out rather well, but we are only two days in.

2. Speaking of fasting, there is a box of chocolate truffles in my pantry that have been calling my name since Wednesday. I didn’t give up chocolate specifically, but I also don’t need any chocolate and know perfectly well I will not stop at just one or two. So in this circumstance, I am giving up chocolate.

…this is worse than the year I gave up butter.

3. David was also unusually excited for Ash Wednesday, but unfortunately the easiest Mass to attend as a family is the on at seven in the evening, during what I like to refer to as David’s ‘manic bed and bath avoidance’ phase. Next year I think we may to try the 6:30am instead.

4. I’ve had yet another epiphany in the "Teach David to Read" saga. This time, it’s that his brains outpace his technical skill. Once he has grasped the information content of a sentence, he has trouble reading the sentence on the page instead of just regurgitating the information contained therein. This is the same trouble we had with the BOB readers – he kept inserting the missing words while reading the simple sentences to make the more complicated sentences he’s used to. It would have been easier to teach him to read when spoke with less complexity, but we couldn’t get him to sit still long enough.

What I’m doing now with him is using the Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading, but not doing the lessons with him. I read the lesson myself, to I know what to focus on, and then we do a warm up game with word ending and starting sound cards. When he’s sick of that, we go straight to the sentences in the lesson. Now I know that when he gets a sentence wrong after a couple tries, I just need to read it correctly and jump to a new sentence. Two attempts is enough for him to pick up the gist of a sentence, and once he has that, getting him to read is a lost cause.

5. I’m almost done with my first pair of socks. I’ll probably finish them on this coming trip to the Valley. Since the last thing I need is to be at my in-laws without any knitting, I picked up a skein of Lorna’s Laces Sole Mate in Bigger On The Inside blue.

It’s NOT (emphatically not) TARDIS blue. Instead it’s a rather nice muted blue gray. My original intention was to knit a pair of TARDIS socks, but the color really isn’t right for that at all. So I’m going to make a pair of Wibbly Wobbly Timey Wimey Socks instead.

6. For the last three Christmases, my dad has been buying me hardback copies of John C. Wright’s latest space opera. I was extremely sad this year because Judge of Ages was not going to be released until February, and so I wouldn’t get a copy for Christmas. But Dad surprised me on release day with a hardback copy!

Then, of course, I had to reread the first two books in the series before I could dig into the third. But I finally made my way through it, and it’s good. No one does sense of wonder like John C. Wright.

I ought to review it. I probably will one of these days this Lent when I need something to write about. But in the meantime, go buy a copy, so Tor buys the rest of the series. I will be very sad if I can’t get a matched set of hardbacks.

7. I’ve finally selected my Lent reading for this year. I’m going back to basics with The Rule Of Saint Benedict. I have decided to make a mini retreat this year at a Benedictine monastery about an hour away from my inlaws, and this has inspired my choice of reading.

I was up in the air about making the mini retreat at all, wondering whether my inlaws would consider it an insult. Finally I ran it by Himself and he told me to stop worrying and just do it. So I will.

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6 Responses to 7 Quick Takes – Lent Edition

  1. melaniebett says:

    1. I think that his answers are pretty standard for his age. Sophie said she’d give up playing with Legos, which I said was fine. Then she followed it up by saying, “It’s kind of boring, anyway.”

    I’m not very good at directing them in giving things up etc. I got a book of Lent with St Therese that Dom brought home and we’re reading that as a daily meditation and it has suggestions for fasting, almsgiving, and prayer. But I’m not really good at following up on those either.

    2. Oh boy. I know exactly what you mean. I tend to feel it’s just not in the spirit of Lent to gorge myself on chocolate so even if I don’t officially give it up, I usually try not to indulge either.

    4. Bella and Sophie do the same thing, supplying the missing words in simple sentences. What I’m doing now with the Ordinary Parent’s Guide is just making sure Bella and Sophie have the words down in each lesson. Which at this point they usually do on first glance. I make Bella read the words once and then go through each sentence once but I’m not too concerned with comprehension. I’m really focusing on baby steps because getting her to sit down to read anything at all is like pulling teeth. Sometimes I come close to despair and sometimes I suspect I’m just being lazy and I need to crack down on this whole reading thing. But then I think about where she was this time last year. We are making progress. Glacially, but progress. And I think that’s good enough for now.

    6. One of these days I’m going to actually read one of his books. I enjoy his essays thoroughly but I’m almost a little scared I won’t like his novels. It’s stupid but it’s almost like I’d rather not try them than be disappointed.

    • GeekLady says:

      6. I do like his science fiction better than his fantasy. And I think you will really like the Count to a Trillion series. The man enjoys words and that really comes across here without being overwhelming like in the Golden Age trilogy.

  2. Mad Auntie Mo says:

    You will like the Rule of St. Benedict. There is some lovely stuff there that is just as applicable to the workplace or the marriage as to the monastery. The long lists of what readings to read and what psalms to sing when are not as enthralling, but you can appreciate how his sense of organization has affected thousands–maybe millions of lives.

    • GeekLady says:

      Sadly, UPS can’t handle shipping a book from Fort Worth to Houston. It was supposed to be here Friday, now they’re saying Monday, but we won’t be home again till next Thursday

  3. Megan says:

    I laughed at the bit where GeekBaby chooses his penance by casting lots. 🙂

    Also, I am amazed that you gave up butter and lived to tell the tale.

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