Friday, February 27, 2015

What's For Dinner: A Friday-licious Treat!

It occurred to me this afternoon (because I'm stahhhhving) that we hadn't had this amazing meatless meal in a while, and digging it out of mothballs (from way back in 2011) to jot down all the ingredients, I figured I'd repost for anyone looking for a good Lenten meal.  But, let me tell you, this is a really really good sandwich any time of year, any day of the week.

* A couple tips: You might want to compare prices between roasted red peppers in a jar and buying fresh red peppers to roast yourself.  The day we went shopping, it was cheaper to buy them jarred. 

* Most any cheese would work with this sandwich, too, we think.  Some of our gang don't care for Swiss, so we used cheddar instead and it worked great.  Tonight I may use some of the Dublin cheese e have in the fridge -- or maybe brie? (Hmmm...  Which one?  What a problem to have!)

* Also, when we used the Swiss, we didn't shred it, just sliced it, which saved a step and tasted the same.  Oh! And the simple mayo-mix spread is so easy and goo-ood!  Basically an aoli sauce we'd only just discovered for the first time back in '11, it's now a staple around here.  So simple, but so good!  It makes any plain old sandwich special.

But, without further ado, I submit for your consideration:

Almost too Yummy for Lent
Awesome Asparagus Sandwich

Yummy with cracked-pepper and tomato basil
flavored chips and  New Belgium Brewery's
"1554"--  or Root Beer for the younger crowd.


1 bunch fresh asparagus, trimmed

1 red bell pepper, seeded and quartered

1 tablespoon olive oil

3 hoagie rolls

6 ounces shredded Swiss cheese

1 ripe tomato, sliced

3 tablespoons mayonnaise

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon minced garlic


1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

2.  Toss asparagus and red pepper with olive oil. Place on a lined baking sheet and bake until tender, about 10 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, remove skin from the pepper and slice into strips.

3.  Cut hoagie rolls in half, place on a baking sheet, and toast lightly in the oven. Remove rolls from the oven and sprinkle each half with cheese. Place 4 to 5 asparagus spears and a few strips of pepper on one side. Place slices of tomato on the other side of the roll. Place the hoagies back in the oven until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes.

4.  Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, mix the mayonnaise, lemon juice, and garlic together. Spread the dressing on one side of the roll and close sandwich.

* We found this at All-recipes!

If you like asparagus and roasted peppers, you've got to try this!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Nosy Meme

Nosy Meme 
Stolen from: Yeah Surveys via Sunday Stealing  Now your turn to steal it!
  • Average hours of sleep:  Usually around 7 hours -- sometimes less -- sometimes more -- sometimes chunks of sleep separated by intermittent chunks of random wakefulness -- or vice versa -- but one thing is consistent: it's never enough!
  • Last thing I googled: "Random Questions Memes!"  No, really!  Because I'm rather out of the blogger loop any more and these fun little post-makers don't just drop into my lap like they used to. But I like them; they're kinda fun! I hope maybe some of my old blog friends will pop by and pick this up to have some fun with, too.
  • They daybed side of the Summer Kitchen.
  • One place that makes me happy: My little hideaway Summer Kitchen is my happy place when I need to get some study/work done or when I just need some s-p-a-c-e... Which, admittedly, is not very often. I can honestly say I've come to appreciate an existential approach to place-happiness in recent years.  I love being where I am right now most of the time.  And right now I'm in quiet, peaceful, rural Nebraska, snuggled near my husband in a cozy corner of the living room with the noise of the children competing with the soundtrack playing in the background. It's not where you are; it's who you're with.
  •  How many blankets I sleep under: One comforter -- unless it's a below-zero night; then I dig out my "reserve" comforter and pile it on, too.
  •  What I'm wearing right now: It's cold outside (a two-comforter night) -- and so it is, therefore, a tad chilly inside this drafty house, and I'm dressed somewhat like an Irish version of Nanuk of the North:  I've got on some black leggins and warm socks under a long black skirt, a green print butterfly shirt over a lace under-tee -- all under the heavy green cardigan Dominic and Michelle brought me back from Ireland a couple years ago. With a blanket on my lap.  I am definitely nice n snuggly.  Layers. It's all about layers in February in Nebraska -- in a hundred year old farm house.
  •  Last book you read:  Common Mystic Prayer by Gabriel Diefenbach, OFM (But currently reading The Mystical Castle by St.Teresa of Avila and rereading The Endless Knot by Wm Biersach)
  •  Favorite fictional character:   Well, because I just mentioned the Biersach books, I can't help but think of Martin Feeney, the sidekick to priest detective Fr. Baptiste first.  But another great favorite is Atticus in To Kill a Mockingbird. (Who doesn't love Atticus?) But, while my mind starts running this way... really, there are so many more personal friends populating the halls of fiction in my mind! There's  Lizzy in Pride and Prejudice, Sam in the Tolkien series, Liesl in The Book Thief, Anne from Green Gables,Juliet and Dawsey from the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Amelia from the Elizabeth Peters series....  goodness, but the list goes on and on... I'd better quit here, huh?
  •  Last movie I watched in the cinema: Old Fashioned (Loved it!)
  • Dream vacation: A summer in the British Isles.  A whole summer.  Financed by some rich person with no strings attached.  I'd like a little cottage on the west coast of Ireland for a home base, but I'd love to see some of England and a lot of Wales, Ireland, and Scotland.
  •  Dream wedding: Had it almost 28 years ago.  Small and simple -- lots of friends and family, not
    Dream wedding...
    Not dream pet.
    (Kidding.  Just kidding!)
    much fuss.
  •  Dream pet: Have her already! A big, sweet, fuzzy St. Bernard named Penny who guards us all with the most
    amazing intuitiveness and care you can imagine.
  •  Dream job: Published author, working from home.
  • How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are? Probably about thirty.
  • Which is worse, failing or never trying? Never trying!
  • If life is so short, why do we do so many things we don’t like and like so many things we don’t do?  Simple.  We're not all by ourselves on the planet, free to do as we please without impacting others. Because we live with and love others, we have responsibilities to them that are just as or more important than our "dream" lists.  Working in peace and purposefulness under the restrictions placed on us by our duty to others and our moral obligations (which are closely united to those duties!), we're actually in position to find the truest contentment.  Selfish pleasures never lead to true happiness, but those things on our "dream" lists that we do get to do are all the sweeter because we've worked to fit them in and they haven't interfered with the more important things in our lives -- the people we love.
Now -- I tag any old body who would like to "steal" this meme to do so with my blessing!  Do please comment here, though, so I can come read your "Nosy" post.  Because, yeah...   I'm nosy that way!

Me? Blog About Coffee?

Coffee is...

White ceramic cups at midwestern truckstops,
Styrophome cups sipped at a traffic light . 
It's wood and steel and cables and hardworking tabletops,
Grounds like earth, honest and forthright.

It's Saturday morning with eggs and bacon, 
Starting another pot when the last cup's taken; 
All-nighters studying for final exams,
Up before daylight, preps and plans.

Made on the run,
Pot brewed at dawn,
For round eyes and high fives
And days full-drawn. 

Brash and bold, the big brother of tea,
Coffee is for going.  Coffee is for me.
Especially Bullet Proof Coffee -- that which is getting me through Lent this year!

Have you tried Bullet Proof Coffee (BPC) yet?  It's not for everyone, but I love it!  Rich and full-bodied, hearty and nourishing, it's helping me through a Lent where I've got very little I can actually eat (since I'm low-carbing).  Check out the full descrip here.  And the "how-to" recipe here.

 Ignore the marketing pitch for specialized "MCT oil" and specialty low mold beans that cost a mint.  The key is to get the good grass-fed organic butter and organic low-mold beans of any variety.  We get the Trader Joe's brand, which is competitively priced -- and, though it may not be as "high octane" as the MCT oil, cold-processed organic coconut oil works just fine -- and can be purchased at a good price at Sam's.  Brew, add the goodies, blend until it whips into a frappe -- and mmmmbaby, you're good to go!  Yummy lasting energy!  

Not for low-fat dieters, mind you -- but just the ticket for folks who either don't need to lose weight or are doing the low-carb, high-protein lifestyle.  And, helping save me this Lent!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Speaking of Sunshine...

Christmas day, December 25th, 2014, exactly two months ago, 
the sun rose (in Denver) at 7:19 a.m. and set at 4:40 p.m.

Today, February 25th, 2015  (my sis, Nina's, birthday)
the sun rose (in Denver, where she lives) at 6:40 a.m. and set at 5:46 p.m.

If my calculations are correct (please do feel free to check up on me!), 
this means that we had only 9 hours and 21 minutes of sunlight in December
and today, we will have 11 hours and 6 minutes of sunlight!

That's an hour and forty-five minutes more sunshine in only two months!

BUT...  March 8th, about a week and a half from today, marks the end of Daylight Savings Time...
Which, if I remember correctly means we lose an hour.  (Spring forward; fall back, right?)

SO... (I had to talk this through with the kids to get it straight, but I think that) we'll continue to gain 2 to 3 minutes a day more light through March, so that by March 25th, the day will be 12 hours and 21 minutes long -- but the daylight will occur an hour later, which means that on March 25th,  the sun will set at 7:17 p.m.!

Me and Nina at about 6 and 3 years old.
Doesn't she look like a little doll?

But, the long and short of it is, Nina, that the sun will shine on your birthday for 11 hours and 6 minutes today.  And it only gets better from here!  Happy birthday, sis!  I love you!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Making Hay While the Sun Shines

 So glad we have Dominic here to man the chainsaw!  Check out the forecast:

Sunny (Clear)
Sunny (Clear)°F | °C
Mostly Sunny
47° / 18°
35° / 4°
Mostly Sunny
18° / -5°
Mostly Sunny
18° / 8°
28° / 19°

It's a perfect day to fill the woodshed, sunny and warm.  Almost shirt-sleeve weather!  But look what we have in store for the rest of the week!

  I'm not sure what the other school kids are doing today, but this bunch got up at 6 a.m., finished their school work by noon and hopped to it. They know only too well how rotten it is to wake up in the morning to snow and a paltry wood supply to warm the house.  Proof that there are good and bad sides to living pioneer style.  We may not have all the easy comforts out here in the boonies, but it doesn't behoove anyone to nurture a lazy spirit, either.  These guys work hard!  And then snuggle in with satisfaction near the crackling wood stove on snowy days, knowing that their foresight and hard work are to be thanked for the warmth and security. C'est si bon!

Using the ladder to reach some old "hangers" -- dead broken branches dangling from the trees that really bug us. And Dominic without eye protection.  (Son!)

William, doing his part.  This is the wagon the kids got for Christmas.  The perfect gift, it serves a million purposes around here, for work and play.
Gabe telling me, "I found an old tire this big out in the weeds...
"And rolled it all the way up to the garage!"
And why did you do this, Gabe, exactly?  No answer there.  But, if I know this kid, he's cooking up something..

I'm off now to finish some correcting of school papers -- then I'm going to work on my garden plans!  It may not seem like it looking at the forecast, but spring is right around the corner - and we have to be ready for it, too!  

Friday, February 20, 2015

Scrivener - n. 1. One who scribes

I recently downloaded a free 30-day trial for Scrivener, a writer's program that's supposed to make it easier to pen long documents.   The tutorial, alone, takes 30 days to get through...

And so far I can't make heads nor tails of it.   I think it really is my brain that needs the upgrade.


Thursday, February 19, 2015

A Day in the Life: Second Day of Lent

The weather here: It's snowing again and reeaallly cold. No playing outside today!
The ugly old shed behind the windmill serves to illustrate the cold grey day, the dismal February snow, and the general feeling of  "bleh" quite nicely... 

 Not even intrepid Gabe wants to go out!

Here's Gabe a couple days ago, posing inside his own hand-built "duck blind."  Pretty cool, huh?  Now we just need some ducks.  And maybe a rifle.  Or maybe not.  (At least not until this little man's a bit older!)

What we're doing: Here's what we actually do on any cold snowy day, Lent or not.  The dining room, next to the big wood stove, is always warmest in this drafty old house, so this is where everyone congregates.
 Everyone's finished with their school work and lunch dishes have been cleaned up. Theresa is reading The Robe, by Lloyd C. Douglas; William is hosting a Summer Olympics for his stuffed animals who have come into the dining room looking for the snack bar; Anna is playing solitaire; Cathy is drinking tea and ...  not doing much else; and Gabriel is writing a book about the adventures of  his good old friend, the monkey, Lester...
 Check it out.  Doesn't his story just look neat -- with the over-sized first letter (we studied Illuminations and he remembered about that!) and the perfect likeness of Lester in his illustration on the side? Such a Renaissance Guy, Gabe!  Duck blinds, artwork, and novels -- all before the age of twelve!

Here's an exerpt (copied exactly, though it's way cuter in his own handwriting):

Once there lived, and still is living a monkey named Lester.  Lester is what you would call different from most of the monkeys in the world.  Lester is different because he would rather watch a football game than groom himself.  In fact bannannas aren't even his favrite food.  Lester's breed of monkeys is the chinse golden monkey, a verry rare monkey.  Chinse golden monkeys are especially rare because they are only seen once a year in the mountains of Narin near the capital of China.

In fact every year when the Chinse golden monkeys travel to the foothills of Narin the people that live on the foothills of Narin worship these monkeys.  Chinse golden monkeys are called that because of there unusually blond fur and the fact that they live in China.  Chinse golden monkeys are extremely skiddish of people (because) we only see them once a year.

I can't begin to tell you how Lester is not shy.  

One particular morning (September 28), Lester noticed something moving in the tall brush.  Lester only being 9 months old and not knowing much about the jungle wondered what it could be.  Lester, ran down the tree to see what it was.  Lester noticed that it sounded like no other monkey he had ever heard before.  It seemed to sound like vrooom vroom!  Lester's curiosity took him.  So he jumped on to the moving thing.  Lester thought it was a huge moving watermelon.  It was actually a jeep full of zoo scouts (zoo scouts are the people that capture the zoo exhibits).

Lester just sat on the jeep in wonder, while the person sitting in the passenger seat pepared a dart gun.  Before Lester could react Lester saw a dart coming straight tords him.  The last thing that Lester remembers is everything going black.

To be continued...


Dapper William
Taken some other day,
definitely not this day.
As I've been writing, things have transitioned just a bit.

Hearing explosion noises and the sound of things apparently being torn asunder, we asked  William about the Summer Olympics going on in his room -- and were informed that "it's turned into more of a civil war!"  Which is what it sounded like was going on in there...

Anna has not won any games of solitaire, and moved on to building card houses, which keep falling down -- when Theresa turns the pages of her book... or anybody breathes...  or  anyone thinks too loudly...

Cathy just now got up and turned on Cotton -eyed Joe and is trying to rouse everyone from their seats to do calisthenics in the living room. We'll see how that goes over!

After exercise, it'll be rosary time at 4:00, then we'll read a couple chapters out of The Magician's Nephew, then all-hands-on-deck to make spaghetti and bread sticks for dinner before Daddy gets home at 6.  Then after all the dinner dishes are cleaned up, we'll all sit in the living room and read our saint books (or whatever Lenten reading everyone has chosen), the boys will work on their Altar Boy Latin...  then we'll likely just chew the fat a bit (figuratively), listen as Theresa plays the piano -- only Liturgical music as a Lenten thing she's chosen  (I may very well just fade away during Lent without Clair de Lune...), someone will probably get out the cards, maybe the chess set...  but, it'll be quiet and cozy, peaceful and beautifully dull.  And then we'll go to bed.

Anyone who needs more than this is missing out.

These are good days.  God is good to give them to us.    

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Because You Ashed...

All About Ashes

* Lent has been observed by the Church from the very earliest days, but the tradition of using ashes on the first day of Lent only showed up some time in the 10th century.  In 1091, at the council of Benevento, Pope Urban II ordered the local custom extended to the church in Rome, and soon thereafter we find liturgical writers of the time generally referring to the day as "Feria Quarta Cinerum" (Ash Wednesday) 

* "Why ashes?" you might ask.  Ashes were used in ancient times to express grief, and are found throughout the Old Testament, as well in numerous references in the New Testament, symbolizing grief or penance. It's recorded that in the 4th century (possibly even before) penitents dressed in sackcloth and sprinkled themselves with ashes to show sorrow for sin as imposed penances.

*  And where do those ashes come from?  The actual ashes, blessed, and applied to foreheads on Ash Wednesday are created by burning the palm branches from the previous year's Palm Sunday.  

*  Why on our heads?  The head is generally considered the "seat of pride," and the smudging or sprinkling of ashes thereon, the imposition of humility, a sign of penance for our sins, and a reminder of our mortality -- implicit in the words of the priest as he applies the ashes.

*  The words.  Where did they come from? "Remember, man, that thou art dust, and unto dust thou shalt return." This verse can be found in Genesis 3:19:  "In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread till thou return to the earth, out of which thou wast taken: for dust thou art, and into dust thou shalt return." This, of course, was God speaking to Adam and Eve.  Here's how Father says it to us on Ash Wednesday: Meménto, homo, quia pulvis es, et in púlverem revertéris.

* When the distribution of ashes was first common in western Europe, they were literally distributed-- or strewn -- over men's heads, but, because women's heads were covered, they were placed more carefully by the priest upon their foreheads.  Eventually, this became the common method among men and women. (I expect the "strewing" made rather a mess.) The common  method in most places...

* Throughout many ages of the Church, the pope on Ash Wednesday has taken part in a penitential procession from the Church of Saint Anselm to the Basilica of Santa Sabina, where, as is still the custom
in Italy and many other countries, ashes are sprinkled on top of his head, not smudged on his forehead. But not strewn, either.  He, in turn, places ashes on the heads of others in this way.

* Anyone may approach the altar on Ash Wednesday to receive ashes. Unlike its discipline regarding the Sacraments, the Church doesn't exclude anyone from receiving sacramentals, such as blessed ashes.  Non Catholics and even those not baptized may receive ashes.

Lenten Terminology

* The word "Lent" used by English speakers comes from the Old English "lencten," meaning "springtime."

*  The Latin name for Lent, Quadragesima, means forty and refers to the forty days Christ spent in the desert which is the origin of the Season.

* The Latin name Quadragesima gives rise to the words for Lent in other languages, for instance:  Spanish - cuaresma; Portuguese quaresma; French - carême; Italian - guaresima; Croatian - korizma; Irish - carghas; and Welsh - carawys.

* In German (where the word for Lent is Fastenzeit), as well as in most Slavic languages, the common name for Lent is simply a phrase meaning "fasting time." A Czech would refer to this season as postní doba or "great fast,"  someone from Poland would say wielki, and Lent would be fasten or fastetid in Norway.

*  Known as Laetare Sunday, the fourth Sunday in Lent marks the halfway point between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday and has been so-called due to the first word in the Introit, Laetare, meaning Rejoice!  This is the Sunday when the priest wears rose color vestments signifying joy (at being half-way to Easter!).

* The fourth Sunday in Lent has traditionally been known as Mothering Sunday in the United Kingdom, corresponding to the American custom of Mothers' Day (2nd Sunday in May) and originated in the sixteenth century celebration of Holy Mother Church on this half-way marker in Lent.

* The last two weeks of Lent are known as Passiontide, made up of Passion Week and Holy Week

* The sixth Sunday in Lent, known as Palm Sunday, begins Holy Week, the final week of Lent

* Wednesday of Holy Week, also called Holy Wednesday or Spy Wednesday, commemorates Judas' spying of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane, before giving Him the kiss of betrayal the next day.

* Thursday in Holy Week is known as Maundy Thursday (Why it's called Maundy here) and is the day on which we remember the Last Supper, the first Mass, as it was shared by Christ with His disciples

* The last three days of Holy Week -- Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday -- are known as the Sacred Triduum.

 The Basic Specs

There are 44 days of Lent in the Roman Catholic Church, but many other churches, which celebrate Lent vary both the span of time and the beginning and end dates.
  • The Ambrosian Rite begins the Sunday after Ash Wednesday, includes all Sundays, but not Holy Thursday
  •  The Eastern Rites begin Lent on the Monday after Ash Wednesday ("Clean Monday") and include all Sundays, but ends on the Friday before Sunday and is followed by a separate and distinct period of fasting up until Easter
  • The Oriental Rites observe eight weeks of Lent in which Saturdays and Sundays are exempted (and the fasts themselves have quite different rules, as well).
* Also observing Lent among Non Catholic Christian sects: Anglicans, Lutherans, Methodists, Calvinists, as well as some evangelical sects and Anabaptists.

What Catholics Do in Lent

* In preparation for the greatest feast of the year, Jesus' resurrection at Easter, Catholics follow a forty day program of prayer and discipline designed to fine tune their spiritual lives, distancing themselves from worldly things in order to move closer to God.  We sacrifice in Lent in union with Christ's sacrifice on Calvary.

* In the effort to distance themselves from the world, most Catholics choose to sacrifice small things voluntarily -- in addition to the fasting and abstinence required of the Church.  These little sacrifices range from giving up sweets, to abstaining from television or social media.  Going out of the way to perform charitable acts or to read spiritual books are also good ways to grow spiritually during Lent. Sometimes little penances can be devised just to elicit mindfulness of the Lenten season. One of our daughters chose to wear purple every day during Lent; one of our sons ate oatmeal for breakfast every single day (and may not have let a spoonful pass his lips since!)  But these are the voluntary mortifications, personal pacts between ourselves and God.  They're not required, not mandatory, and there is no penalty for not making your own sacrifices during Lent, and slipping up on them is a lost opportunity, not a sin (unless it's done with spite, of course). But...

 The Church, knowing human nature and how easily we slip out of doing what's good for us has, indeed, mandated some certain Lenten sacrifices for all Catholics (without impediments like ill health or age, etc.).  Like a mother who  has rules of the house, requiring her children to brush their teeth, clean their rooms, and eat healthy food, Mother Church has rules, too, ones she requires us, as Catholics to follow.  Here are the rules for Lent:

  * Fast and Abstinence

(The uniform norms for fast and abstinence adopted in 1951 by the bishops of the United States, modified at their November 1956 meeting' as observed by most traditional Catholics in our country.  All rules of fast and abstinence can be modified by a local bishop.)

Abstinence (of meat)

1. Everyone over 7 years of age is bound to observe the law of abstinence.

2. Complete abstinence is to be observed on Fridays, Ash Wednesday, Holy Saturday and the Vigils of the Immaculate Conception and Christmas. On days of complete abstinence, meat and soup or gravy made from meat may not be used at all.

3. Partial abstinence is to be observed on Ember Wednesdays and Saturdays and the Vigil of Pentecost. On days of partial abstinence, meat and soup or gravy made from meat may be taken only once a day at the principal meal.


1. Everyone 21 - 59 years of age is bound to observe the law of fast.

2. The days of fast are all the days in Lent except Sundays, the Ember Days and Vigils of Pentecost, the Immaculate Conception and Christmas.

3. On days of fast, only one full meal is allowed. Two other meatless meals, sufficient to maintain strength, may be taken according to one’s needs; but together they should not equal another full meal.

4. Meat may be taken at the principal meal on a day of fast except on Fridays, Ash Wednesday, Holy Saturday, and the Vigils of the Immaculate Conception and Christmas.

5. Eating between meals is not permitted, but liquids, including milk and fruit juices, are allowed.

6. Where health or ability to work would be seriously affected, the law does not oblige. In doubt concerning fast or abstinence, a parish priest or confessor should be consulted.

* There is no obligation for fast or abstinence on a holy day of obligation, even if it falls on a Friday.

* Confession and Holy Communion

* Catholics are required to make a good Confession at least once during the Season of Lent to fulfill the precept of the Church that we go to Confession at least once a year, and having made a good Confession, we must receive the Eucharist at least once a year during Eastertide (the time between Shrove Tuesday and Pentecost).

* Shrove Tuesday, incidentally, refers to the day immediately preceding Ash Wednesday. Many of the faithful go to Confession to be "shriven," or forgiven of all sins in preparation for a pious Lent on this day.  It's not required to confess on Shrove Tuesday, though; any time during Lent and Eastertide works for making the Catholic "Easter Duty,"  

* A beautiful old custom, NOT by any means mandated by the Church has to do with with Lenten Confession: before going to see the priest for "shriving," Catholics used to bow before each member of the household (and to anyone they've sinned against), and say, "In the Name of Christ, forgive me if I've offended you." The response would have been: "God will forgive you." Note that confessing sins to a priest is a Sacrament which remits mortal and venial sins; confessing sins to those you've offended is a sacramental which does not take the place of true Confession before a priest (Auricular Confession), but is, nevertheless, good for the soul.

So, here goes:  All my reading public, friends, and family: 

 In the Name of Christ, do please forgive me if I've offended you!

By long wordy posts
By too many posts
I really am truly sorry.
I'll try to do better.
By too few posts
By quotes and facts not properly attributed or images borrowed without permission
By poor self-editing: improperly placed commas, typos, run-on sentences, fragments, & misspellings
By not always checking to be sure all my links work
By sounding like a know-it-all
By sounding like an ignoramus
By neglecting to follow up on comments
By being snarky
By posting on my kids without making sure they were OK with it first
By being so absent at my friends' blogs this year
By not always triple-checking all my facts
By anything I may have written, said or done that offended anyone --

Hope everyone was able to kick off Lent 2015 in the best way possible today and that it's a blessed and fruitful season!