Dear Susan, In another of my astounding Bad Catholic moments, I just threw a Christmas party (NOT an Advent gathering), missed Mass, and generally blew up my first two weeks of Advent. To be fair, I have pretty much let everything get out of control, not just my spiritual life. Today alone, I have missed… Continue reading ‘Tis the Feast Day – or Advent Overload
Dear Susan, I once had a friend who derided certain holidays, like Mother’s Day, as “Hallmark Holidays,” events that were created by card makers to prey upon our sentimentality – and guilt – all of which translated into increased card sales for them. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I recognized Christmas… Continue reading Has Christmas Become a Hallmark Holiday?
Dear Susan, December 3 might be the first day of Advent this year but, here in Houston, the holiday season kicks off with the annual Nutcracker Market for the Houston Ballet. This self-described holiday shopping extravaganza brings in about 100,000 shoppers over a four-day period each November. I remember my husband taking me to my… Continue reading Let’s Get This Advent Crackin’
Dear Susan, I am just going to say it. I have dressed as a witch. This doesn’t mean that I am worshipping the Dark Lord or practicing Wiccan incantations. I just like a good Halloween celebration, a fancy hat, and a black tutu. Also, pointy shoes give you a more elongated leg line. For years,… Continue reading Holy, Halloween!?
Dear Susan, Back in the day, when I was warping young minds in religious ed, I invented the fire and water game. This was part of our sacrament unit. I would read out a statement about baptism (water) or confirmation (fire) and the kids would hold up a picture of flames or a water droplet,… Continue reading Saving the Choice Wine: Lessons in the Napa Fires
Dear Susan, Have you ever been someplace that took you so far out of reality that you found it hard to re-enter real life? Apart from Spain? Sometimes, I think we get a glimpse of heaven here on earth, in terms we can understand. You may not think of Universal and Walt Disney World as… Continue reading Locked Out of Heaven?
Dear Susan, The devil is in the details. Or in this case, the devil robes. Let me back up. For me, September has become the month of watching all my empty-nester friends’ trips to Europe on Facebook. They drop the last kid at college, wax poetical about the pain of their young offspring leaving… Continue reading Traveling Lightly