Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

Maybe I should say Monday Snippets since I’m only just now getting around to writing it, but that doesn’t have quite the same ring to it, does it?  Anyway, it’s a weekly linkup of a group of Catholic bloggers hosted by RAnn, and even though lately my content is more catholic than Catholic, I like to join in!
Question of the Week:  Do you have any suggestions regarding the Rosary? Books? Audios? Ways to pray it?
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There is a Rosary prayer garden on the grounds of All Saints Church, where Lorelei and I go to Mass every Wednesday morning.  I haven’t said the Rosary there, but it’s a thought, especially since she and I will be studying all twenty mysteries later this year.
morning garden
As you might notice above, there’s no rosary shortage around here!  I’d like to be that person who says it every day, but so far I have failed at all my attempts at formal prayer.
Anyway, on to the posts for this week!
Last Sunday I participated in the My Sunday Photo link up.
Then I wrote a post about last Saturday’s walk in the Urban Wilderness.
I ended with another graveyard post.  And there are many more to come whenever I find the time.
Thanks for reading, and check out the other bloggers in the link up above.

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

It’s been a lovely day and a busy Sunday which is not over yet, but I’m taking a few moments to link up with RAnn for Sunday snippets, a weekly gathering of Catholic bloggers sharing their week’s posts.
Question of the Week:  Have you ever tried the Liturgy of the Hours (Divine Office)?  Why or why not, and, if so, is it something you pray regularly? 
No, I have not.  I don’t have any kind of formal prayer routine, which is something I would like to remedy at some point.  If there is one things I would wish it is that I could be more holy. Sigh.
Now for the round up:
I was out of town from Tuesday night until Friday night, visiting my sister in Dallas, and despite good intentions I did not write a word while I was there.  I did, however, post a few things at the beginning of the week, which I hope you will enjoy!
A post about what’s going on in my garden right now.
Two photo posts, for new linkups I am participating in:  Silent Sunday and My Sunday Photo.
Thanks for reading!

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

Finally, a week in which I can participate in Sunday Snippets, a weekly linkup of Catholic bloggers hosted by RAnn, and actually have several posts to share!
First, though, this week’s question:
Question of the Week:  Share a family sacramental memory–the cute thing the kid said, the cake at the party, you in your wedding dress, the family gathered around the baby–anything is fair game as long as it at least sort of involved a sacrament.
Here’s a fun one. First the picture, then the explanation.
Jake's BaptismThis picture was taken at the reception we had following Jake’s baptism (August 1994, when he was six months old).  Those are his godparents in the picture, and the reason they are wearing those expressions is that they just saw the little piece of paper we had tucked into each napkin, which read: “Please save the date for this same time next year for the baptism of Jake’s little brother or sister, expected in February.”  And there was yet more fun to come at this party.  John got up to make a speech, as he is wont to do.  He announced that he had just been offered a job (he had graduated from law school just months before).  Then he dropped the final bombshell, telling everyone he was planning to join the Church (something no one was expecting).  It was a big day all around.
Now on to what I’ve posted this week!
I led off the week with It’s Good to Be Insured: An Obamacare Update, sharing what a blessing this has been to our family.
Next up was Beneath the Ashes, exploring some of my lingering feelings about what we lost in the fire that destroyed our house three years ago.
Then I shared a recipe post: Low Carb Pumpkin Sausage Soup.
I wrote another installment of my series on local walks, Walking in South Knoxville: In the Homestretch.
Finally, it was back to the graveyard with The Mystery of Lebanon Cemetery.
I hope you will check some of them out!

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

Good Sunday evening and welcome to Sunday Snippets, a weekly linkup hosted by RAnn in which Catholic bloggers answer a weekly question and share their posts.  Y’all, if you haven’t been reading me for long I promise I really do qualify as a “Catholic blogger.”  For one thing, I’m a Catholic, first and foremost, which informs EVERYTHING I do, including blogging. 🙂  But also, even though lately my posts tend more towards health and exercise, if you look back you’ll find plenty of religious content.
Question of the Week:  Tell us what you like best about your parish.
My parish is Immaculate Conception, the oldest parish in East Tennessee.  The parish is 159 years old and we celebrated the 125th anniversary of the current church building just a few years back.
Picture of IC that looks like a painting
My family has been part of this parish for almost 70 years.  My parents were married here, as we were; I was baptized here, as were four of our five children; and all our children celebrated their First Communions here.  So what I like best would be my historical connection to the parish, and next would just be the way I feel when I am there:  Nowhere else do I feel as comfortable and at home.
Now for this week’s post.  Yes, once again, only one!
This week I reviewed The Relationship Project in my capacity as an Off-the-Shelf blogger for Beacon Hill Press.  I have a lot of extra commitments this week, but I also have a number of post ideas, so we’ll see what happens!
Check out more prolific bloggers at the linkup here.

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

I’m linking up with This That and the Other Thing for Sunday Snippets, a weekly round up for Catholic Bloggers.
This week’s question:  Name and link to two Catholic blogs you really enjoy. If the bloggers don’t participate in Sunday Snippets, invite them to join us!
I don’t read a lot of blogs regularly, even though there are many that I like.  I just don’t have time any more.  These are a couple I stumbled across and like so much that I included them on my blogroll, even though I don’t visit every day.  You should check out Invisible Woman and Everything to Someone.
Now here’s the part where I am supposed to list my posts for the week.  But since this is the week in which I had jury duty and my son had unexpected surgery (among other things, as always), this list is short:
Walking in West Knoxville:  The Jean Teague Greenway
See you next week!

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

It’s Sunday and time to link up with RAnn of This, That, and the Other Thing for Sunday Snippets.  This is a great opportunity for you to find some new Catholic Bloggers and to catch up with what I’ve posted this week.
Question of the week:  What is your favorite formal (memorized) prayer?
That would be the Prayer to St. Jude.  Maybe it’s overkill to pray to the Patron Saint of Hopeless Cases as often as I do!  But I say this prayer often.  I got the prayer card in high school–I can’t remember why or from whom–and said it so many times in college (to have me say it before exams was a ritual with some of my friends!) that I soon had it memorized.  There are other prayers that are more beautiful, but none that I say so frequently.  Here is the version I know:
Most holy apostle, Saint Jude, the Church honors and invokes you universally, as the patron of hopeless cases, of things almost despaired of. Pray for me, I am so helpless and alone. Make use I implore you, of that particular privilege given to you, to bring visible and speedy help where help is almost despaired of. Come to my assistance in this great need that I may receive the help of heaven in all my necessities, tribulations, and sufferings, particularly – (here make your request). I promise, O blessed Saint Jude, to be ever mindful of this great favor, to always honor you as my particular and powerful patron, and to gratefully encourage devotion to you.  Amen.

And now for the round up!  I started the week off strong with a post on short walks in West Knoxville.  I posted again on the very same day!  This time I wrote about some unexpected benefits of homeschooling.  Finally, I shared the story of the new way I have been eating, which has brought me good health and much weight loss!
That’s all, folks!  Be sure to check out some of the other Carnival bloggers at the above link.

Short West Knoxville Walks

I spend a lot of time promoting South Knoxville trails on this blog, and rightly so, since South Knoxville to most Knoxvillians is the Undiscovered Country.  But the fact is, it isn’t the only place to walk in town.  And it’s a good thing, because I am exiled to Northwest Knox County and I don’t have time for a thirty minute drive every time I want to take a walk.  Nor do I enjoy the only safe non-driving option of walking up our very steep hill and around a couple of cul-de-sacs.  (Knox County motto:  We don’t need no stinkin’ sidewalks.)
Lucky for me, West Knoxville offers several greenways too, and I’ve written about some of them here and here.  However, some of our very nice greenways have a drawback:  they aren’t loops.  When you are in a hurry and want to do some exercise walking, loops are what you want.  I expect that’s why Lakeshore Park, with its 2.2 mile loop, is so popular.
I have found four loop trails within five minutes of my neighborhood.  Lorelei and I go walking every Wednesday–gym for her, fitness for me!  I walk with a friend every Friday.  Emily and I try to walk during the week as well as on Sunday (even though some times it’s just up that despised hill!).  And I do hope to start coaxing John on walks once it gets cooler.  Below are some of the places we go.
1.  Nicholas Ball Park
This is the closest park to our house.  It’s on Ball Camp Pike, which if I thought about it at all when I was a child I assumed referred to the fact that the nearest baseball field was located on that road.  You can read about the actual source of the name in the picture below:

photo credit: Donald Raby

As a park, this one is replete with every attribute:  a bathroom, a picnic shelter, baseball and soccer fields, a small playground, and trails.  There are two of these, one your basic loop around the soccer field, where people always seem to be having so much fun that I almost feel interested in soccer, and the other a short climb up and down a hill where you can see majestic cedar trees and a smattering of wildflowers.
Nicholas Ball
We usually do the hill trail, then do as many loops as we have time or energy for, then do the hill trail one more time.
2.  U.S. Cellular Trails
I hate to call them that, but anyway, if you park at the soccer field you can loop around the main trail and you can also shake it up by incorporating the sidewalks on the bisecting road to do some figure eights if you get bored.  And you could easily get bored if you don’t bring a friend along to talk to, because there’s not a whole lot to see!  I did catch some pretty sunset pictures there one evening:
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And got pretty close to a bunny:
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And then there’s this house which I have always loved and would pick up and move somewhere safe if I could.  I remember when Lovell Road was two lanes and this was nestled in the woods.  I dread the day when I drive by and it’s gone.
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3.  All Saints
As part of our religion curriculum, Lorelei and I attend Mass every Wednesday morning at All Saints Church, the closest Catholic church to our house, just three miles away.  Afterwards, we walk around the trails and then I let her play on the playground.  This trail offers special opportunities for prayer as well as exercise, plus flowers and interesting trees.
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There’s a bench in the area below, where I usually take a break while Lorelei plays on the playground for a few minutes.
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One section has the Stations of the Cross, which we plan to come back to pray during Lent.
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The Marian Garden:
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4.  Fort Sanders West Trail
I don’t have any pictures of this one but want to mention it anyway.  It’s a big loop that runs around the campus of Fort Sanders West.  There’s plenty of parking, or course, and it’s ideal if you are feeling motivated to exercise after a visit to your doctor.
So there you have it!  If you live in West Knoxville and thought South Knoxville was too far, what’s your excuse for not walking now?

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

I’m linking up again with This That and the Other Thing for Sunday Snippets, a weekly roundup of Catholic bloggers.
Question of the week:  With which ministries/activities within your parish are you involved?
I don’t like this question!  Once upon a time I could have written a long paragraph on this topic.  I was involved in so much, from running the Moms’ Group to serving on the Pastoral Council.  And that doesn’t even count the Diocesan activities and the parish school activities I was doing at the same time!  But that was a different season in my life and I sometimes wonder how on earth I had the time and the energy for all the things I did back then.  Still, it seems like so little so say that at the moment all I do is sing in the choir.
However, our parish has not had a choir in years.  And when we did, I had little kids who needed me in the pew with them.  I am enjoying choir so much, and am glad that THIS season allows me to be able to join in!
And now a roundup of this week’s posts, which is really easy because despite the many many posts I’ve written in my head this week, the only one that made it into print, as it were was this one:
Five Favorite Cities
Maybe this week will be better!

Sunday Snippets: A Catholic Carnival

Linking up with This and That for the weekly roundup of Catholic bloggers.  Not much to round up for me this week though I am afraid . . .
Question of the week:  What is your favorite hymn or song you hear at Mass?
What a question!  Anyone who has been reading this blog for long knows that I am much more likely to be talking about the songs I didn’t like and the ones I didn’t hear.  Yesterday I was privileged to attend a Diocesan Mass for married couples, and the prelude included The Gift of Love, which was played at our wedding.  On the Feast of the Assumption, we sang Holy is Your Name, which I have loved since I first heard it at our parish’s Anniversary Mass several years ago.  But I didn’t hear either of these much-loved songs at my own church, sadly.  Although many consider the poetry bad and the tune overused, I do get happy when we sing Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee.
As for the roundup part of this post . . . I’m not sure what I was doing this week, but it wasn’t blogging.  All I have to share this week is my Five Favorites posts, but it’s particularly appropriate for Sunday Snippets since I wrote about some favorite saints!
Thanks for reading and I will try to have more content this week.

Five Favorite Saints

Five Favorite Saints
So for my Five Favorites today, I would like to share five of my favorite saints!
1.  Saint Peter

Saint Peter by Paul Rubens

Peter is absolutely my favorite saint.  He’s so endearing.  I find myself shaking my head and smiling when listening to his exploits at Mass.  So enthusiastic.  So clueless!  So like us.  Peter blathered about building booths for Jesus and company at the Transfiguration, leading the Gospel writer to opine, “He did not really know what he was saying.”  Peter denied Jesus.  Peter tried to walk on water and sank instead.  But Peter also was the first to name Jesus as Messiah, and he was the rock on which Jesus chose to build His Church.  How inspiring for all of us that Jesus chose this imperfect soul to be the first Pope, demonstrating that faith and love, not education and ability, are what count most.
2.  Saint Monica
Saint Monica by John Nava

St. Monica’s feast was last week and it was then that I suddenly realized I should be praying to her!  My kids are nowhere near as wayward as St. Augustine was in his wild younger days, but all mothers pray for their children and who better to be our patron than this mother whose prayers were answered in such  a spectacular fashion?
3.  Saint Bernadette
Saint Bernadette

I chose her as my Confirmation saint after reading (and re-reading and re-reading) The Song of Bernadette.  My visit to Lourdes as a teenager remains a highlight of my life. An uneducated peasant girl who never sought out sainthood and who was unexceptional in every way before her visions, she is a reminder to all of us that God can use anyone and that anyone who accepts a mission from God will be given the grace to carry it out.  I’ve written more about her here.
4.  Saint Patrick
saint patrick
Even if you aren’t Catholic, you probably know all about St. Patrick; he’s that popular.  But aside from the fun of St. Patrick’s Day, I feel a special debt to him which you can read about here.
5.  Saint Theodore the Written Upon
Saint Theodore

If you went to Catholic school you probably recall being made to dress up like your patron saint for All Saints Day.  Coming up with costumes for these occasions for my kids has always been a challenge since I am not what you would call crafty, but I was very pleased one year to send Teddy off to school wrapped in a sheet and with the first few lines of the inscription that was carved into the head of this poor martyr written on his forehead in red ink.
Who are your favorite saints?  You can tell me in the comments below.  And check out Mama Knows, Honeychild for more favorites!
five favorites