Saturday, April 02, 2011

picture perfect ...

... every year it is the same thing. I never do Lent right. This year is no different, having neither given up vice or added virtue.

In fact, until today, I had not seen the inside of a confessional since last August. Hopefully that doesn't shock you all seeing as how the only thing I am good at giving up is pretense of piety.

Have I ever mentioned how much I hate catechism in the form of arts & crafts? I think I made have said something once or twice. Well, truth is I have a love and hate relationship with the whole crafty catechism crap. Like I do with Martha Stewart and those Southern Living magazines.

They're so neat, full of fun ideas. Look, I can redecorate my kitchen with chicken wire and Native American pottery. It will be so chic. Then my friends can come over and be envious of my style while noshing on home made queso dip made with vine ripened tomatoes from my garden.

Next I envision creating those memorable cherished mother-son moments at my finely polished kitchen table making pipe cleaner Apostles and using a cactus and glitter puffy paint to symbolize some great point in the life of Christ. And my son looking up at me with doe eyed admiration at the wonderful pious mom sitting before him.

Basically I use glossy magazines and stay at home mom blogs to measure the interior of my family. And I always fall miserably short.

After a certain measure of guilt has built up in me I decide the best thing to do in both instances is to quit trying. That's when I have cereal for dinner and I haven't prayed the rosary in so long I wonder if they added a new Mystery. Or go eight months without making a proper confession.

Then before you know it Lent has arrived and is half over.

But the wonderful thing about the Church is no matter how long you stay away, be it eight months or thirty five years you can always make it right. And God always forgives... that and He doesn't care whether I bake "Calvary Cookies" for my son's faith formation class. So there.

18 comments:

Laura O in AK said...

I'm secretly hoping that our new parish forgoes the First Communion banners. I don't know if I can find the time to get it together this time around as the toddler might be too willing to help. My boys love art, but not the hot glue variety.

And, a big AMEN to God forgiving. As for seeing the inside of a confessional....I keep getting thwarted by the toddler. I just might go to the communual penance service at our parish rather than try to arrange for child care when confessions are normally heard on Saturday afternoons.

Christie said...

Wow, you really struck a chord with me. I've caught myself up in the fantasy of holiness or momminess so much that when the actual moment arrives and I am staring into the bored eyes of my not-so-impressed son I should pray, "Lord, let him at least get something important out of this moment," but what I do instead is get snappy because things aren't working out as planned. Then if I'm feeling super guilty I might blog about the one millisecond of insight into my character that God granted me before I, in my pride, was off on some other grandiose scheme.

I'm with you on confession, I find myself schlepping my grandiose butt there way less often than I actually need to.

Katie said...

All I can think is that you and I must be "soul sisters". You took the words right out of my mouth.

Cruise the Groove. said...

I find it very, very difficult to stay away from Mortal sin unless I go to confession every 2 weeks.

What an incredible unbelievable gift from Christ is sacramental absolution.
Without it most of us would be damned for eternity.

therese rita said...

Ya know, I bet that's why the Church set up Divine Mercy Sunday to follow on the heels of Lent/Triduum/Easter: to drive home the fact that by ourselves we can do "nothing", to quote the Lord. Nobody gets into heaven by their own bootstraps or it'd be just like earth...full of pride...and who wants that?

Christine said...

I don't mind crafty catechism stuff as long as it's my kids doing it and not me...

3puddytats said...

For me my home is my refuge from the insanity of work and the world. Quiet, clean, simple, peaceful..So nice to come home to a restful environment. I know what's for dinner, the laundry is done, the car has gas in it, and tomorrow's lunch is packed. And I'm single and do all this myself.

Not quite Martha Stewart, and if you sit on my couch you might get a few cat hairs on your clothes, but it is what it is...

It rather hit home last weekend when I had a bout of the stomach flu..even though I was miserable it was reassuring to know that I had clean sheets and towels and extra pjs at the ready as the laundry was all done, soup and crackers in the pantry and clear liquids in the fridge so no panic trips to the store or imposing on a neighbor, and a clean bathroom to be sick in..nothing says' "I love you" like a clean commode, especially when you're hugging it..

Sara

Christine said...

Well, now that we know that Sara's perfect...

I'm a married mother of three little ones, rarely know what's for dinner, often have four loads of laundry waiting to be done, car runs on empty half the time, and tomorrow's lunch is usually packed at the last groggy minute. Sheets could probably use more frequent washing. I cannot for the *life* of me get my kids to bed on time, and on a good day I get the house half clean.

Yep, that's about right.

Shelley said...

A person once recommended to me a book titled "A Mother's Rule of Life: How to Bring Order to Your Home and Peace to Your Soul" by Holly Pierlot. Instead of helping me become an organized and FLIPPIN' AWESOME Catholic mom, it made me want to shoot myself.

So while I do believe strongly that we should pray and go to confession regularly, I think we call all do without Calvary Cookies. I mean, there is such a thin line between being a good Catholic and a good mother and being a total whack-job who can pack a child's lunch with one hand, dust the piano with the other and use the third to rake the grain you're growing so that you can harvest it to make altar bread for your parish.

Wait...

Mimi said...

Crafty catechism, giggle.

Truth be told, though, in my Church School class, I always try to do a craft or game after the lesson.

Maryjohn said...

My home was clean, organized, serene, peaceful, lovely, and then I married and had kids.
Then it was chaotic, messy, loud, and great.
Now that they are grown and gone it is organized, serene, and peaceful again.
Notice I didn't say anything about clean.
I always get tongue-tied in confession. I'm a convert form a protestant denomination (35 years now) so the whole idea of talking 'out loud' about my constant and multitudinous sins still scares me!

Terry Nelson said...

Is this like turning into a women's blog now? Don't succumb Kat.

Dorian Speed said...

I think we need a Catholic equivalent for Put a Bird On It, craft-wise.

Suburbanbanshee said...

Well, crafts can help the kids who think with their hands to "grasp" the catechism info, so to speak. But there's no reason to put the crafts up in church. Down in the church hall with the punch and cookies, sure.

I liked the "make a Eucharistic-motif stained glass window with black construction paper leading and tissue paper" craft, but I don't remember any of the others.

jceomi said...

Confessing your weaknesses in your blog is what keeps you from confessing your sins. You have a great ability to laugh at yourself and this is certainly a gift, but no substitute for an encounter with Christ who loves you beyond compare. Who loves you because you are weak. Remember the Preface for Martyrs He chooses the weak and makes them strong. He does this by the forgiveness of their sins and their receiving Holy Communion both of which strengthen them in holiness. Try a seasonal approach for every change of litugical seasons go to confession. Lent is meant in many ways for failure so that we rely totally upon Christ.

The Crescat said...

Shut up, Terry. I am a woman.

Emkay said...

Yes! Two points for another craft-impaired sister-in-faith!

Lola said...

Don't feel guilties about the SAHM thing.
I'm a SAHM and I think my darlings might be better off if I worked outside the home sometimes.

Don't read those decorator magazines.

Really just don't do it.

(The only 'woman's magazine' I read is Country Woman. I live in the suburbs and it comforts me with do-able recipes and the cover girl is never a professional model. She's a real working woman. My favorite was the Ants Pants girl! The homes featured are REAL people homes. But even so I take a break from that magazine now and then.)


I really only get to pray the rosary with Coaching from EWTNs International Rosary. (I even got the cd for the CAR becaue I keep getting the mystery I'm on wrong!)

Lent, oh the plans I has made...