Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Prayer Requests Please

For the repose of the soul of the grandson of a woman who was a great friend to me when I really needed one. He died in a car accident on his college campus earlier this week. He was a passenger in a car and sadly wasn't wearing a seat belt. Everyone else in the two cars survived except him, he was the only one not belted in.

For the repose of the soul Gashwin's father, who died on Monday. And for comfort for his family.

For comfort and strength for a friend who is dealing with serious family issues.

For ongoing support for my dear sisters who are the daily caregivers for my mother who is suffering from Alzheimer's disease.

For safe practice and an injury free game this weekend in Miami. Did I mention that the Colts are in the Superbowl? I think I may have.

Heavenly Father, we know that we can come to you with all of our cares and offer them up to you and you will help us to shoulder the burdens of them. We do this today in the confidence that was given to us by your Son our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen


Flying Under the Radar

LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

After all, angelmeg is pretty darn uncommon (no really I did use my actual first and last names, the ones from my Drivers Licence, I am just that unique).

hat tip to Church of the Masses for the Link.


Monday, January 29, 2007

Sidebar Addition

I got my new Pro Life ticker on the side bar from Uncool Mommy. I found that by way of Christina at Confessions of a Hot Carmel Sundae. It really is a sobering statistic.

We prayer warriors for real peace against the violence of aborion still have much work to do.


Couldn't Happen to a Nicer Guy

Check out this story from our Diocesan newspaper. It is about the Colts team chaplain Fr. Peter Gallagher. I have had the privilege of meeting Fr. Pete, and he is so genuine in his love of both his faith and the sport of football this is the perfect place for him to be.

Did I mention that The Colts are in Miami this week getting ready to play in the Superbowl on Sunday?

Oh, I thought I had.


Aquinas Loves a Sunday Afternoon

So I spent yesterday afternoon at the inaugural Aquinas Lecture at the Newman Center here. I wasn't quite sure what to expect, except that the speaker was an Aquinas scholar from St. Louis University.

The Dominicans who run the Newman Center here were very happy to be hosting a talk on Aquinas, because he is one of their own, even if the speaker did come from a Jesuit University. (A fact that Fr. Bob just had to mention, we'll allow them their little digs, we can take it)

Anyway, the Speaker was Dr. Eleonore Stump, a Professor of Philosophy. She dove right in and gave an amazing lecture on Aquinas' philosophy of love and how that philosophy relates to forgiveness. I took tons of notes, and it cleared up quite a few misconceptions I had about how Aquinas came to understand human emotion and interaction. All in all it was an afternoon well spent.

The last half hour of her time was spent in a Q&A, which amounted to the audience asking her many questions that stretched their understanding of not only Aquinas, but how he relates to how we live today and how decisions are made, or not made in contemporary society.

I really think the lecture exceeded Fr. Bob's expectations for a lecture of this type. The most amazing part was the age range of the audience. I would guess that the youngest person in the audience was probably a 19 year old student (someone I recognized who is currently in the RCIA program on Wednesday nights) and the oldest was well into retirement age. Everyone was engaged in the lecture and discussion.

This is why I love living in a University town. Which is not to say that something like this might not happen at a Catholic church anywhere, but the chances of it happening in a University setting are a bit greater.

God is so good, I can add what I learned yesterday to what I am reading these next few months before I actually have to take the Medieval Philosophy class next summer, and I won't feel so ill prepared. So long as I continue to do the hard work that is.


Did I Mention . . .

The Colts are in the Superbowl!

In Honor of that Fact all posts this week will be in Colts Blue. If you don't like it . . .

I respectfully say . . .

bite me.


Sunday, January 28, 2007

Can One Have an Unnatural Attachment to an Article of Clothing?

I got my Jeff Saturday Jersey in the mail on Friday. I LOVE IT! It may become my favorite article of clothing. I think if I could get away with it I would wear it every day this next week leading up to the Super Bowl.

Did I mention that The Colts are in the Super Bowl? There is some other team in the game too, but they aren't worth mentioning, at least on my blog.

I wonder how I coordinate a church outfit that includes a football Jersey? Hmm, what length of skirt is best suited for wearing with a Jersey? Or maybe this is one time when it would be appropriate to wear dress pants, just this once. (You see, I am still old school enough to wear skirts or dresses almost every time I go to Sunday Liturgy) I think for Superbowl Sunday I might just allow myself an exception.

After all The Colts are in the Superbowl!!!!!!

Go Colts!


Thursday, January 25, 2007

Undue Influence, But This Kind I Could Get Used To

So I went to my parish library yesterday after morning mass. Did I tell you all how much I love the new priest (I think I did). I intended to pick up a few books on ancient and medieval philosophy to read between now and when I have to take those dreaded classes next summer. What I found was a veritable gold mine of books on Philosophy and Religion (what did I expect in a parish library after all?)

So, anyway, I pulled a few books off of the shelf and was quite satisfied. I had reading material for the next month or two, and would be well versed in ancient and medieval philosophy. I was about to leave when because of the influence of my Internet pals I could not stifle the urge to check out just one more book.

Now, lets you and I play a little game of "one of these things is not like the others": Which of the books in angelmeg's stack doesn't quite fit into the category of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy studies: Which do you suppose I was coerced to pick up because of my affiliation with that wild group of men?

Introduction to Thomas Aquinas

The Emergence of a Philosophy of Religion

Medieval Thought: Augustine and Aquinas

Kierkegaard an Introduction

And the funniest thing of all, in a day with no time at all to read I have practically devoured the silly thing. I am almost halfway through. Can you imagine if I had had any real free time yesterday.

If we had studied Kierkegaard in my Modern Philosophy Class last summer I might not have gone so starkers. He actually makes sense, and poetic sense at that. I am in awe and indebted once again to the guys across the blogosphere for the shove.

Now I have to back-track a few centuries and begin reading the other stuff.


Work, work, work.


Monday, January 22, 2007

Saturday in the Endzone Sunday!!!!!!!

for a Colts TD even.

Pro Bowl bound Center Jeff Saturday made the only Touchdown of his football career last night in the Colts 38-34 victory over the New England Patriots when he recovered a fumble on the goal line and edged it over for the score.

It would be a minor understatement to tell you that I am a huge fan of Jeff Saturday. I absolutely love him and am an avid fan of his weekly appearances on the Bob an Tom radio program. I have a standing agreement with mrangelmeg that if the Colts won last night's game he will get me a Jeff Saturday jersey to wear at our annual K of C Superbowl Chili Cook Off. So, mrangelmeg . . .

I was so excited to see his Touchdown last night I was celebrating for it more than I was for the team's win.

Being the child of a father who grew up in Chicago, this Superbowl is going to be very interesting. In fact Rex Grossman, the quarterback of the Bears grew up right here in the same city as the angelmeg clan lives. But even with all of that, I am gonna be cheering to Colts on to victory because they deserve it. The entire team is a class group from Tony Dungy the coach and his staff, to all of the players.


Wednesday, January 17, 2007

National Body Challenge Update

Just so you know I will NOT be posting my weight on this sight. That is a number best left between me and my God.

I will though be posting occasionally the types of exercise activities I have been engaging in as a way to keep myself motivated and possibly to motivate someone else to try them (or not).

Today I spent a half hour walking briskly (well just above the slow setting actually) on the treadmill, while I was reading The Conversion of Augustine written by Romano Guardini in case anyone is interested in what I am reading as well.

Then I did 1/2 hour of Yoga with a video I got from Walmart. It is called Yoga for the Core. It was very invigorating as this segment was intended to energize me rather than strengthen any one area of my body.

I am being pretty faithful to five days of exercise a week with two days free, though I do count Ballroom dancing class as an exercise day (hey you try it and then you tell me it isn't a full body workout!).

On the free days I park my car farther away and try to walk a little more quickly on my errands and things like that without intentionally doing any real exercising.

So far I feel pretty good.

I may or may not post some of the changes in my diet, but as I said before, I am really only focusing on making healthier choices without really counting calories or doing anything that would be considered dieting at this point.


American Idol Shout Out

Did anyone else notice The guy who sang Heywood Banks' Revenge Song on last night's episode of American Idol?

I was laughing so hard there were actual tears in my eyes. I am so glad they allowed this guy all the way through to the TV round if only just to be able to have a Heywood Banks song on National Television.

Hey, what a great Idea . . . They could do an entire night of Heywood Banks on American Idol, they have done the Barry Manilow Songbook why not the Heywood Banks songbook. Can you imagine one of those contestants singing:

It could Happen!


Update on Yesterday

Blessedly, they came and got my car, took it to the shop and when they got it off the wrecker they tried to start it and it wouldn't start. They were about to shove it into a work bay when one of the mechanics got in and turned the key just to see what would happen and it started just fine. Every time after that it started just fine. Thankfully the shop where I took it was run by an honest Christian man who didn't try to sell me something I didn't need. He told me that not having any diagnosable problem, there was nothing he could do for me. So I went and got it and drove it home without a problem. He checked the battery and everything he could, but since the starter worked fine every time they tried it, except that first time, he didn't feel that he could honestly sell me a starter. I was only charged for towing and a diagnostic fee that was less than a half hour of labor cost, so I think that was very fair of him, and he promised that if I had any trouble while I was still in town he would bring it back for free (not charge another towing fee).

I have driven it today and no more problem. I really think it was a blessing that I was around to observe the changes my mom is going through. She really needs changes in her meds and my sisters need more help with respite care which we are getting them through Area 7 Agency on Aging. Perhaps the wandering at night can be controlled by my one sister staying up later a night and then napping when the aide is there in the afternoon.

Like I said before it is such a dance, you get used to one set of symptoms and the rhythm and tempo changes.


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Everything Happens for a Reason . . .

even cars breaking down.

Today my car broke down and I am stranded at my mom's house. I had intended to leave here by noon and be on my merry way back home. Unfortunately, due to a mechanical failure that I first thought was a dead battery because this is the first time my car hasn't been in a garage at night, but is something more serious because a jump didn't help and the electrical stuff came right back I had to have my car towed to a shop.

So, now I am here at mom's and am observing what my sisters have to deal with when they take care of my mom. Last night was a bad night. Mom didn't settle down until after one in the morning. I think she finally got to sleep at 3. I stayed awake so that if she came back down stairs someone would be awake. My sisters do this every night! She seems pretty awake having only had a few hours sleep, I am exhausted.

Her medication is supposed to keep her calm and not agitated, but she has gotten angry three or four times today over things that don't really matter. My sisters have handled it really well, but to have to take this kind of abuse every day would be extremely hard to bear I think.

Mom needs to have her meds changed for sure. Alzheimer's is such a dance, one set of meds will work for a while, and then suddenly it will just stop working. At least now we know. If my sisters are going to be able to take care of her and take care of themselves, we need to get this straightened out very quickly.

Good can be so good. If my car hadn't broken down I wouldn't have seen how really bad this was getting with my own eyes. I only hope this lesson doesn't cost me too much in car repairs.


Monday, January 15, 2007

A Dark Way to Spend a Rainy Afternoon

Mrangelmeg and I went to see Children of Men yesterday. and while it was dark and disturbing it was not a disappointing visit to the theater. It left us spent and questioning a lot of the assumptions we have about the future we assume is awaiting us.

It really wasn't that hard to imagine a world that had lost all hope and was descending into the final throes of destruction because of loss of fertility. Everything from that point on was amazing and shocking and disturbing and ultimately left you wondering.

We talked about nothing else all through dinner. I had read the book, and even having done that I was mesmerized by the pacing and plot twists that the movie makers chose to add for the adaptation.

I highly recommend that everyone go to see this movie. You will not be disappointed.


Sunday, January 14, 2007

The Sweet Sound of Liturgy Done Well

Today was the first Sunday for our new Pastor. He is a very soft spoken man who in the 21 years of his priesthood has never been a full time pastor until now. Previously he worked in Washington DC, and most recently in our Archdiocese he was part of the Priest Personnel Board and Sacramental Minister at a small rural parish just a few miles from here.

I am so happy that he is here because of the reverence with which he prays the liturgy. Don't get me wrong I loved Fr. Charlie dearly, but I have always struggled with the way he said Mass. But it might be said that in my case a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, because the more I learned about liturgy over the last five years or so as I have been in Gradual School, the harder it has been for me to endure the way that Fr. takes liberties with the wording and pacing of the liturgy. I have been making allowances for his health recently, but he has been doing some of these things as long as he has been at this parish.

I think those days are behind us now though. Fr. Bill, our new Pastor, prayed the Liturgy with a strong clear voice, and everything was in the proper place, and he sang what was supposed to be sung and spoke what was supposed to be spoken and he didn't leave off the ends of prayers. I think I am going to like his Masses. When we left church I shook his hand and thanked him for the wonderful liturgy.

Praise God in heaven for sending Fr. Bill here.


Saint Lessons . . .

SIC, (spouse of Ironic Catholic) is at it again, and just as satirically witty as his better half. In this case though I think Ironic should sleep a bit to the outside of the bed for fear of the lightning bolt.

The theme of his latest missive is How to be a saint like me in two easy lessons. I have included a quote from a portion step one "humility humility humility" to wet your appetite

No, humility means accepting the fact that not everyone will admit that we
know the truth, and patiently enduring their abuse and scorn. “Blessed are those
who are persecuted for my sake,” the Lord says.

Read the rest here.


Thursday, January 11, 2007

Improvement Time

So I have decided that I am finally over my virus that I got at Christmas and sufficiently back to a level of well being that will permit me to begin to do something about my general state of health. In other words it is time to


Mrangelmeg is always after me to go to the YMCA with him, but he goes at 9:00 at night! I did try to go with him a few times but it was disastrous. By that time in the evening the most energy I can muster is to keep my eyes open and laugh heartily at whatever we are watching on television. I am just not a high energy evening person.

Not for nothing, but I could stand to lose a few pounds (like most of us, but maybe me more than some). I am sure that my arthritic joints, especially my knees would love to be carrying around less weight. I could stand to strengthen my back which is giving me a bit of trouble again. As for my abs, I would not be surprised if someone asked me when the baby were due, that is what I think when I look at my flabby tummy.

So anyway, I did something radical yesterday. I registered for the Discovery Health National Body Challenge which offers exercise and diet tips and promises 8 weeks to a healthier you. Of course, because of my food allergies, most of the meal plans are ones that I will not be able to use, but I might be able to adapt them, but I can use the exercise planner and some of the motivational tips and other helps on the site to keep me on the right track. I have promised myself that I will keep this going for at least 8 weeks, and I will make myself accountable by keeping a record of both diet and exercise.

On the diet end I am not going to focus so much on calories as on portions. No more sitting down with a huge snack of chips or some other empty calorie snack in the afternoon. I am going to start making more intelligent choices. More fruits and vegetables and less processed foods. More lean meats and the use of my new George Foreman G5 I got for Christmas to make healthy grilled preparations.

For exercise I am going to start using the exercise equipment and videos and DVDs that I have collected over the years. Three to five mornings a week I am going to set aside some time to actually move my body. I have a nice little collection of equipment, so I shouldn't get bored or have to use anything so often I get bored. When I feel like I won't embarrass myself because I am so wimpy I might even venture out to the YMCA some morning and use the workout equipment there or take a swim or something.

Who knows, when the weather gets warmer I might even get my old bicycle overhauled and take it out on the wonderful bike trails we have here in town.

I am really committed to this, I think the only way I am going to get completely healthy is to whip this body back into some semblance of muscle tone and endurance. What I am trying to say is that I am sick and tired of being sick and tired.

I am declaring 2007 to be the year of the new and improved angelmeg. Here is how the pledge is worded:

I, angelmeg, challenge myself to do my best to eat healthy, whole foods
every day, to get up and omve around more, to make the time to exercise, a to
keep a log of my progress. By doing so, I'm improving the quality of my
own life and my loved one's as well.

I will keep you updated as I go along.


Direction Comes, Even When You Don't Get Directed . . . God is So Good!

My Spiritual Director is ill this week and had to cancel our regular monthly appointment, so I missed my monthly shot of spiritual direction. I felt really bad for him because being the pastor of two parishes and all it must be difficult for him to admit that he has to cancel everything on his calendar and stay in bed (he really must be sick, especially to cancel Mass).

This morning though I got a very eye opening and deeply needed moment of correction from my devoted and highly put upon husband as he was preparing to leave for work. I was musing out loud about losing someone's email address, and he asked a simple question and I jumped to a totally wrong conclusion about the intent of his question (something he pointed out later in the conversation that I do quite often.)

It occurred to me, as I listened to what he was saying and then used that as prayer meditation as I spent a half hour on the treadmill. I usually react to what he has said before I even try to understand what he means. I really need to work on that because I know that he doesn't intend to say things to hurt me and if I would just stop and think I might understand that he is simply asking a question to gather more information and not trying to in any way impugn my intelligence or capabilities as a person. He just likes to have all of the facts before he makes a statement because he is a Myers Brigs TJ where I am an FP.

As I was doing my meditation walk (sounds so much better than exercise don't you think?) I realized that while I have been trying to make changes in myself in the last year and thought that I had come pretty far, I still have a lot of growing to do. The first thing I need to do is to publicly apologize to mrangelmeg for being so blinded to how ignorant I have been in the past to our different communication styles. Then I need to thank him for the loving correction and not so gentle nudge he gave me this morning that started me on this path of self revelation. I have to learn to stop jumping to conclusions before I jump into or off of something that will do irreparable harm to our relationship.

I am so blessed to have mrangelmeg in my life. In the Vocation of Marriage the role of each spouse is to insure that the other spouse gets into heaven. In our case I think mrangelmeg has the tougher assignment. Be patient with me I may be slow but I do eventually get it.


Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Prayer Request Please

I just got an email from my uncle that my Aunt Regina was diagnosed with a fast growing and invasive form of lung cancer. She will begin agressive chemo this week. Please keep her and my uncle Chuck and their children and grand children in your prayers as they deal with this disease.

Thanks for your prayers.


Saturday, January 06, 2007

I knew I was Royalty (If you could call this that)

My Peculiar Aristocratic Title is:
Lady Madame Angelmeg the Prohibited of Divine Intervention
Get your Peculiar Aristocratic Title

Hat Tip to Her Excellency Ironic Catholic the Laconic of Waterless St Mildred

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Resolutions I Plan to Keep

1) I plan to wake up each and every day this year, and eventually to actually get out of bed.

2) I plan to talk to each of my children as often as I can, even if they don't talk to me first, AND even if I have to chase them down and make them talk to me. (teenagers what can I say)

3) I plan to laugh.

4) I plan to breathe as deeply as I can as often as I can (hey, you get asthma and then you will understand how important this one is)

5) I plan to have completed all of the requirements for my Masters program by the end of this calendar year (if the good Lord is willing and the creak don't rise as they say around these parts.)

6) I plan to make sure that mrangelmeg knows how much I love him every day.

7) I plan to write more intentionally than I have done in the past.

8) I plan to keep learning about God through study and spiritual direction.


2006, Now That Was a Year

Okay, so even though I blog, and I keep a journal I am really not one who likes to dwell too much on retrospective moods. I have been reading a few blogs today that have spent time going back over the last year and giving an accounting of "the year that was" with all of its ups and downs.

Personally, I think considering all of the things I had to endure and live through this past year (Modern Philosophy finals being only one major annoyance) I think I will keep the past in the past and look toward a brighter (please God let the future be brighter) future.

Actually though, no one was convicted, (whew), and most of the illnesses that were contracted last year weren't life threatening, so all in all, as a family I would say that we came out way ahead of most people. But who wants to tempt fate by looking back at this late date?

I plan to keep writing on my blog as I have this past year, because as I have said before I can't afford therapy, so you all are stuck with me.

Happy New Year.