On Saturday we celebrated the Feast of the Immaculate Conception. In our house, it seemed as though we partied all weekend. Caecilia’s Baptism Day was the 7th, then the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, then the Second Sunday in Advent. We ate cake and had Chinese take out all weekend. (Well okay, it was all leftovers from Friday night).
Our pastor made sure to let us all know last Sunday that Saturday was indeed a Holy Day of Obligation. He calls them “Holy Days ofÂ Privilege” as well, so there was no missing that we were supposed to be in the pews for Mass. There was the normal Friday evening Mass (which is offered every Friday night) and one additional one on Saturday.Â Â We opted for the Friday Vigil Mass as it was also Caecilia’s Baptism Day and we wanted to make sure we went to Mass on that day as well.
On our way there, we decided to stop for Chinese food on the way home. This is rare for us (spur of the moment meal out decisions.) I had put fish in the fridge and made a salsa to put over top of them, but on the way to Mass we remembered our Chinese food tradition on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception (started when we lived in Ohio, four years ago.)
Saturday night we went to Mass so that we could go to confession before hand. (Since our parish is a half hour away, it makes sense to stay for the Vigil if we there for confessions already.) Â The line for the confessional was long (and in the beginning confusing, we didn’t know/couldn’t tell that there were people waiting in line) and only Karol got in, before Mass started.
Sunday, as we did not need to get up and go anywhere, was quiet. We organized our room a bit, as it looked like clothes had exploded and had overnight cinnamon rolls for breakfast. (I used fresh ground wheat and let me tell you, that adds a big difference in the flavor and texture, they are most filling.) Joshua topped them with a praline topping with pecans from our yard. I folded more laundry as the day progressed, then finally made dinner using the fish I had pulled out on Friday evening. It was good stuff. Thanks Anne for the recipe.
Since we weren’t able to get to confession over the weekend, and I am getting on an airplane this week, we headed to a Penance service at a different parish last night. I love the sacrament of confession, love it. While it was kinda hard to prepare while wrangling the kids Â I was happy to go (normally we split up, Joshua goes in while I stay in the van and vice versa, but this time we both went it, because of the lines.).
One of the things we’ve been doing as a family this Advent is the Jesse Tree and Vespers. The Jesse Tree ornaments are actually just hung on a string of yarn above the fire place. We do a reading with them each night, then we pray Vespers. It is a nice way to end the evening. I am also enjoying praying Vespers as a family. We also have scaled back on food and sweets. Not as severe as Lent would be, but no cookies or ice cream right now. Â How can we feast on Christmas if we’ve been feasting all of Advent?