Monday, June 20, 2016

Father's Day and Father's Party

From our Father's Day / Father Van Vliet's 20th ordination anniversary celebration. 

I really enjoy having people visit us here! This house was made for parties and the property for adventuring. The hills and trees make it feel much bigger. We have dense woods and trails where you might feel lost for a moment until you get to know it.

I didn't take many pictures but visited and soaked it all in. Enjoyed talking to people I really find incredible! I didn't grab the camera but for a few moments. We had a great crowd. A few years back we had a surprise party for Father with many more people, over a hundred.  We had it mostly outdoors at our our old house. It was shady and pleasant and worked well. This year was too humid and I really wanted to spend it inside and sadly, I cut the guest list.  I invited people I knew Father would enjoy and we all would enjoy each other. We have great families in our parish to draw from. We had three large families in addition to ours and enjoyed kids everywhere! We also invited some older couples and individuals who have worked so tirelessly on the church property these almost five years. Betty came, the sweet, generous lady who donated the land to our parish. She loves farm life and spent a lot of time outside looking over the changes we've made since she was here last. She paints and plans on painting pictures from photos she took. 

Many haven't been here since we first moved in and had only recently had the foundation repaired, so then, the sheet rock was still crumbling. So much repair has help ended since then. It is encouraging when someone notices the minor and major changes. 

We had a near miss for a tragic accident when an unused door fell over either a loud bang! It could have been a horrible accident, but an ancient holy water font and a wall stopped the fall. A little one was just under the door, very frightened by the noise and our reactions. The mom applied lavender on her neck and miraculously she was playing again in moments. I couldn't help but think of the alligator tragedy and praise God for every child leaving safely when the party was over. And all our wonderfully strong Guardian Angels! It was an old, solid, heavy, wood door. 

I hated making Craig work as a host on Father's Day, but he didn't mind. He enjoyed visiting with Father and all his friends. We had won a bid at a 4h auction for a Bbq dinner for 25, and added to it local Chappel Hill sausage that Craig cooked Sunday. Then everyone brought something delicious. Salads, dips, cole slaw, potato casserole, cookies, fruit trays, pies, cakes. A feast! Who doesn't love a potluck? 

We had a torrential downfall just as many people were arriving and my sweet girls would go greet with an umbrella. It did subside before all guest arrived and cleared up the remained of the day, but left an extra heavy humidity in its wake. The kids didn't mind, in and out all around, many were muddy and wiped out when the day was over. The teens played cards, went on walks. A joyful day. I'm very thankful.

We have leftovers for days. We have all our big project work done, since we did a big push before the party including re surfacing the road, repairing random doors that didn't close, inside and outside clean up. I have delightful friends who help wash dishes before they left, so we only need to sweep the floor, tend the animals and relax today.

Father's sermon was about vocations, vocation to a priest or married life both require qualities to make a good father. Father of a family or father of a parish. 

A Prayer for Priests 

O Jesus, Eternal Priest, keep Thy priests within the shelter of Thy Sacred Heart, where none may touch them. 
Keep unstained their anointed hands, which daily touch Thy Sacred Body. 
Keep unsullied their lips, daily purpled with Thy Precious Blood. 
Keep pure and unworldly their hearts, sealed with the sublime mark of the priesthood. 
Let Thy Holy Love surround them from the world's contagion. 
Bless their labors with abundant fruit, and may the souls to whom they minister 
be their joy and consolation here and their everlasting crown hereafter. 

Mary, Queen of the Clergy, pray for us: obtain for us numerous and holy priests. Amen. 


At the end of the day, before Molly had to leave, this is the shape we were in to wish my sweetie a Happy Father's Day!


  1. That one photo is amazing!! The light and the moment and the lines... love it!

  2. That one photo is amazing!! The light and the moment and the lines... love it!