The title is the Paschal Greeting at church. Happy Easter!
I'm finally happy with our living room wall. I made this group hanging for FREE!! Who has the money for decorative items these days? Buying the frames I originally had in mind was just too much money so I dug around the house and put this together. I actually like it better than the original idea. Here is the make-up: curtain rod- garage, ribbons- leftover pillow fabric I hot-glued into shape- how custom! Frames- already owned and took prints out we didn't love anyway. Pictures- printed from our color printer, the nature photos include two from the tree in our front yard and one from a patch of flowers in the back. The ribbons aren't even holding up the photos, just tucked behind. I guess I gave away the secret, but anyway, it shows what you can do without any money.
On Holy Friday we went to the church for decorating. The piece in the center with flowers is Christ's tomb. Its sits there from Holy Friday until a certain part of the Paschal service Saturday night/Sunday morning. (The service is from 11:30pm-3:30am). Various members of the church sign up for times throughout the weekend to come watch over the tomb and read Psalms aloud.
I look forward to my hour every year. Just you and the tomb in the church. It's very meaningful- especially if you sign up at 1:00am like we did one year! The section of the room in white was a kitchen a few weeks ago. They worked fast to give us the extra room in the nave.
Happy Birthday Dax! Saturday we didn't have much time for birthday celebration with all the church preparation going on but we did have time for dying eggs. Hannah really enjoyed that.
Dax leading the choir. I caught him in the 2 or 3 seconds he does not actually sing in the 4 hour service! The really great thing is that I got to sing too! Our friend Heather stayed the night at our house so we good be kid-free!
The service was moving and beautiful as always. The is the biggest day of the year for Orthodox Christians and there is just nothing like the music, the energy, the feelings... etc. All these people have been eating basically beans and rice for 50 days so a feast is in order with tons of meat and chocolate desserts. It's about 4:00am in this picture!
Father Justin and family at our table. He deserves a really long nap after Holy Week and all the work he did.
The next morning Hannah and I enjoy a Cheerios breakfast near the back door.
We also survey the damage by our recurring visitor- the raccoon!!!! He/she keeps hoping we have another way into our house. The night before, I actually watched him do this damage from the safety of the window with not even the bright porch light, Dax's raccoon spray, or my loud broom smacking to deter him. We can either buy steel grates for every single eave hole or trim the huge branches of the tree hanging onto our roof which is how we think he gets up there. The tree trimming begins tomorrow. In any case, he's completely ruining this wood which will have to look cosmetically terrible now.
On to happy things- the girls enjoy their Easter baskets!
The church always has a huge picnic and egg hunt. Here are all the kids being distracted with songs and crafts while the adults hide the eggs.
Megan's family was able to come so we had a great time.
Here is Hannah from the picnic last year...
And now she's our little girl, no longer a baby. Time flies.
Phoebe and Hannah take stock of their baskets.
Hannah wants to get in on the big girl party.
Also, Hannah has a suitor already. His name is Evan. He's an older man at 10 yrs. old but perhaps he'll wait for her. : ) He seriously loves Hannah and she loves him. If he calls her name she comes running (which makes me realize she does indeed hear Dax and I calling but chooses to ignore us). He walked her around, put her into this swing and took her out, offered her chocolate, asked both Dax and I separately if he could give her chocolate, etc. He told me he likes to be with her because she's so cute. I told his mom we were claiming him when he was older but she seemed to think I was crazy and said I might regret it when I saw his bad side. Haha. She said he's used to helping other kids- he has 2 older brothers and 2 younger sisters- but I'll attest to the true love. : )
Helping his lady with her shoe. Isn't this the best?
Happy Easter to Chloe too!
- my favorite : ) I hope Chloe stays like this forever. Every time she sees me she gives me a big grin and gently touches my face as if to say, "Is it really you?"