Family Centered Living

Perfect Timing

©Nissa Gadbois

This is the Joseph Tree.  Several years ago, we came to this place.  It was up for sale by lottery and the USDA was hosting an open house.  As we walked back from the upper field and woodland, we stopped and prayed that if it was God’s will, He would make it ours.  We returned several days later with our children and buried a statue of St. Joseph among the roots.  We were not the fortunate winners, so we carried on looking at other farms.  That search took us all over the state and as far away as Kentucky. 

But our hearts were always here. 

After a few more years of feeling like we had been wandering in the desert, we discovered that this farm might be available again.  We prayed for peace about making an inquiry.  It was a long, long process but eventually  – and on my 40th birthday – we signed the closing paperwork.  His timing was perfect.

One day, there will be a beautiful statue of St. Joseph here – above ground – evidence of his faithful prayers on our behalf, and of our gratitude for his tender care.  As difficult as these five years have been, we are filled with gratitude every morning at the enormous gift of this place; and humbled by the responsibility of stewarding for the rest of our lives.

Hushed October

©Nissa Gadbois
 
O hushed October morning mild,
Thy leaves have ripened to the fall;
Tomorrow’s wind, if it be wild,
Should waste them all.
The crows above the forest call;
Tomorrow they may form and go.
O hushed October morning mild,
Begin the hours of this day slow.
Make the day seem to us less brief.
Hearts not averse to being beguiled,
Beguile us in the way you know.
Release one leaf at break of day;
At noon release another leaf;
One from our trees, one far away.
Retard the sun with gentle mist;
Enchant the land with amethyst.
Slow, slow!
For the grapes’ sake, if they were all,
Whose leaves already are burnt with frost,
Whose clustered fruit must else be lost—
For the grapes’ sake along the wall. – Robert Frost, “October”
©Nissa Gadbois

Precious and Holy

When your youngest child of nine climbs into bed between you as the sun is beginning to rise, and you realize that moments like these will soon cease to occur. Man and wife and child wrapped warmly in a family embrace. This moment is precious and holy. 

Silently, you sob, tears stream down your cheeks and your body trembles.  Out of joy and sadness.  Joy for the gift, sadness for the passing of a season.

Then you realize that a tiny hand is stroking your arm and hand.  And that little hand reaches up to stroke your cheek.  It is wet, and he gazes at the tears on his palm for just a moment and begins to wipe the rest away.  Then he curls his small body up, places his still wet hand on his own cheek, rests his head on your chest, and slips back into a slumber.

 

Canticle of Creation

©Nissa Gadbois ©Nissa Gadbois

Benedicite, omnia opera Domini, Domino; laudate et superexaltate eum in saecula.

Benedicite, caeli, Domino, benedicite, angeli Domini, Domino.

Benedicite, aquae omnes, quae super caelos sunt, Domino, benedicat omnis virtutis Domino.

Benedicite, sol et luna, Domino, benedicite, stellae caeli, Domino.

Benedicite, omnis imber et ros, Domino, benedicite, omnes venti, Domino.

Benedicite, ignis et aestus, Domino, benedicite, frigus et aestus, Domino.

Benedicite, rores et pruina, Domino, benedicite, gelu et frigus, Domino.

Benedicite, glacies et nives, Domino, benedicite, noctes et dies, Domino.

Benedicite, lux et tenebrae, Domino, benedicite, fulgura et nubes, Domino.

Benedicat terra Dominum: laudet et superexaltet eum in saecula.

Benedicite, montes et colles, Domino, benedicite, universa germinantia in terra, Domino.

Benedicite, maria et flumina, Domino, benedicite, fontes, Domino.

Benedicite, cete, et omnia, quae moventur in aquis, Domino, benedicite, omnes volucres caeli, Domino.

Benedicite, omnes bestiae et pecora, Domino, benedicite, filii hominum, Domino.

Benedicite, Israel, Domino, laudate et superexaltate eum in saecula.

Benedicite, sacerdotes Domini, Domino, benedicite, servi Domini, Domino.

Benedicite, spiritus et animae iustorum, Domino, benedicite, sancti et humiles corde, Domino.

Benedicite, Anania, Azaria, Misael, Domino, laudate et superexaltate eum in saecula.

Benedicamus Patrem et Filium cum Sancto Spiritu; laudemus et superexaltemus eum in saecula.

Benedictus es in firmamento caeli et laudabilis et gloriosus in saecula.

Amen.

[Photographs are of our maple sugarbush.  How glorious they are this year!  It is as if God has sent us some consolation for the awful drought we are experiencing.  Thanks be to God!]

Elder Brothers

Spending childhood with an elder brother is the best practice you can get to master the sport called life. – Unknown

©Nissa Gadbois

 

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