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January 22, 2015

Sad news...

I took this picture on Monday January 12th...Lusy had a stroke and was doing poorly.  We all gave her extra love and attention. 
Tuesday January 13th, our sweet Lusy died in our home, with the 4 of us surrounding her as she slowly stopped breathing, we felt her heart beating for quite a few minutes after...then it stopped.  Rob wrapped her up in a white bedsheet and we buried her in the backyard.  Digging a grave for her was no easy task.  Rob had to make a fire to soften the frozen earth.  It's been a hard week.  We miss her every time we open the door, she would greet us with wagging tail...
 Listening to Uncle Rob play the mandolin.
 Monday, we celebrated Theophany in church and brought home blessed water.
 I ♥ that we have so many kids in our parish. 
Thankfully, my sister and her family were here last week to keep us all cheerful, during this sad time with our dog, Lusy.  Olivia wanted to make cookies, and Liza helped.

January 12, 2015

Christmas party...

Yesterday, our parish had a Christmas party following Liturgy...the children took turns performing, dancing, singing, reciting poems.  It was very nice!

Hannah sang the Winter Song written by Sara Bareilles and Ingrid Michaelson.

Irish folk dancing, 4 hand reel ...Olivia, Sasha, Hannah & Ella.

Several children recited poems, this was my favorite one...the little girl told this story, while her brother passed out candy canes:     

The  legend said that a candy maker in Indiana designed the candy cane to tell the true story of Christmas - a story about a virgin giving birth to a baby, who would give up His life for our Eternal life.
Look at the Candy Cane
What do you see?
Stripes that are red
Like the blood shed for me
White is for my Savior
Who’s sinless and pure!
“J” is for Jesus My Lord, that’s for sure!
Turn it around
And a staff you will see
Jesus my shepherd
Was born for Me!

In one way, it looks like a "J" for Jesus, meaning Savior, because He was meant to "save His people from their sins" (Matthew 1:21). Turned the other way, the candy cane reminds us of the shepherd's staff. The first people to hear of Christ's birth were shepherds guarding their flocks at night (Luke 2:8-20). Jesus called Himself the Good Shepherd,  the One who is  searching for his lost sheep, feeding them, gently leading them, (Psalm 23; John 10:1-18; Isaiah 40:11; Jeremiah 31:10; Micah 5:4; Hebrew 13:20).

 That's my Godson, Timothy.
 Taking a bow. Two of my nieces did Russian folk dancing.  Unfortunately, I didn't take a video, but I did take some photos!
My other sister and her husband, little daughter and baby son came from Canada for a visit.  It was our first time meeting the baby, who is named Nicholas, but they call him Kolya for short.
Last year, my parents couldn't stay, but thanks be to God, they were having a good day and they got to watch their grandchildren yesterday!
Little Sofia, who I've mentioned many times, in the middle, with her mom on the right and father on the left with Timothy and grandma who is visiting from Ukraine next to her.

On a sad note, our dog, Lusy, has been doing very poorly.  She needs prayers.  Our vet put her on Baytril on Jan. 2nd for her cough, it seems she has fungal pneumonia (he looked down her trachea, after giving her anesthesia, and also took x-rays), she was coughing up blood!  Now, she is dizzy and can't walk (just this morning)...and doesn't want to eat.  Please say a prayer for her.

January 7, 2015

Christ is Born! Glorify Him!

What a bright day!  Giving gifts to one another, at Pepaw and Grammie's house, after the Nativity services...it is a very cold day here in Ohio, high of 10'F but very sunny, blue skies!!!  A little snow makes feel very festive.
Uncle Rob plays carols on the mandolin while we chatted, little Timothy explored and the girls played games.
Timothy loves his dancing Snoopy.  Below, Olivia holding a jar of lavender candies.
My dad got some Kusmi tea.
Earrings made by my 9 year old niece with sterling silver and glass beads.  Hannah got purple ones and I got ones with red and green beads that I'm wearing right now.
 
A pocket watch with the Eiffel tower on it for Olivia.  She loves Paris.
In all, the most wonderful thing about Nativity is knowing that God loved us so much that he sent his Son...and sharing that joy by spending time with family!

January 5, 2015

In our home...

Today for art class, Olivia continued on her self-portrait on canvas with acrylic paint.  Mixing up a skin tone wasn't easy, but I think she came up with a very natural color.
Our Lusy was sick last week (coughing up blood) and went to the vet Friday.  They kept her for a few hours and put her under anesthesia so they could look down her trachea and take x-rays.  Her heart was obscured by a dark area on her lungs, but when the doctor listened to her lungs, they sounded clear.  Very confusing.  He sent the x-rays on to a specialist.  It seems she has a fungal pneumonia, and so gave her an injection and now we're giving her antibiotics.  She's to go back in a few days for another x-ray to be sure it's clearing up.

And tonight we're expecting a bit of snow!  We celebrate the Nativity of Christ on Wednesday Dec. 25 / January 7th (old calendar)...so it would be really nice to have a white Christmas for us Orthodox Christians.

December 29, 2014

Meeting Metropolitan Jonah and Sister Vassa

Sister Vassa came from Vienna, Austria to speak at the St. Herman's conference.  She is just as interesting and funny as she is in her videos:  http://www.srvassa.com/
There's Hannah singing in the choir...she's wearing the green hat I crocheted almost 3 years ago, so it's easy to spot her!
 Censing around the church.
Metropolitan Jonah is in blue.  He greeted everyone with warmth, smiling a lot and spoke about kindly.  I like him!
My nieces, throwing rose petals before the Metropolitan came in the church on Sunday morning.
 
At the end of the Liturgy he gave a sermon on how we all have so many distractions (like those who were healed in the Bible story we read in church, of the 10 healed only 1 came back to thank Christ), maybe a motorcycle, new house, just got married...but need to remember to pray and go to church!
My girls with Sister Vassa.
  Hannah and her girl friends from ORPR camp!