Thursday, April 29, 2010

Good Shepherd Garden Party Week 3: The Heavens Tell God's Glory!

Well, I'm a bit late posting last week's Good Shepherd's Garden Party but wanted to share nonetheless.

After spending time with the sheep in the pasture on week 1 and then feasting at the Lord's Table on week 2, we moved to the skies for week 3.

We are so blessed to have found this creative and meaningful way to celebrate the 50 days of Easter together as a family. This last week I realized that if I wanted to make this devotional time together more significant I needed to spend more time contemplating the stories and images from Scripture myself. Not only did it really change the way I presented the stories, this week's theme of God's creation declaring His Glory was just what I needed to hear myself. I mentioned that I had hoped to seek beauty during this Easter Season and at times I've been struggling to see the splendor in the ordinary, but through these passages of Scripture my eyes were opened afresh to the wonder all around me that I often turn a blind eye too. As Peter Mazar writes in the introduction to this week, "With our eyes to the skies we will open wide our senses to the wonders of nature, and we will praise the Lord who is the maker of all."

We had the opportunity to do just that on the Thursday night of this week--the day we learned about hail. For our special treat we headed out to Rita's Water Ice, as hail isn't quite rain or snow, water ice isn't quite water or ice! As we were loading up the car, we noticed the sun and blue skies (Sunday's theme) but then as we got out of the car again, the clouds (Monday's theme) rolled in. As we ordered, the rain started (Tuesday's theme), and their were flashes of lightening (Wednesday!). We decided to eat the rest of our water ice in the car on the ride home, when the wind (Friday's theme) really kicked up just as we turned onto a big boulevard lined with blossoming cherry trees. We pulled the car over as the wind whipped and swirled the blossoms around us in one of the most beautiful natural events I've ever seen. It was a true blizzard of pink blossoms. We were so amazed we could do nothing but laugh, even the baby just laughed and laughed. [When we read Friday's devotion the next day which asked, "Have you ever watched wind take blossoms from a tree and blow them into the air?" Everyone shouted, "Yes!!!"]

We love water ice!

By the time we were finished our water ice, the skies had cleared and were filled with a beautiful rainbow (Saturday's theme). All week my 5 year old daughter had been praying that she might see her first rainbow. The kids hopped and danced in glee. And I praised the Lord, maker of all, for the spectacular show. The Heavens declare the Glory of God, indeed!

We had our Garden Party on Saturday night with my parents as guests. Here are a few pictures of the food for our feast:

cupcakes to represent the sun, clouds and wind!

sugar cookies shaped like umbrellas and rain drops!

Rainbow Fruit Kababs. G made them all by herself!

Thanks to Shower of Roses and Waltzing Matilda for the recipes and ideas! For more posts, head over to Catholic Cuisine.


Jessica said...

I'm just now getting around to visiting some of the links from last week! Your party turned out beautifully!!

May I ask if you used a cookie cutter for the umbrella cookies? My girls are currently on "U" Week for their Alphabet Path, and that would be such a fun project for them. Hummm.... :)

Jessica said...

I wanted to add how sweet it was that your daughter was praying to see her first rainbow! I'm so glad that God blessed her with that special little gift. What perfect timing and what wonderful memories you all are creating!

Amy said...

Thanks Jessica! Here are the directions I found for the cookies, but we never had time to decorate them. You don't need an umbrella shaped cutter, just a cup rim to cut a circle, then cut it in half with a knife, and then shape the bottom by hand. To make it even easier, I just used the "break and bake premade dough" and pressed each square into a circle with the bottom of a glass.

We love all of your ideas on the alphabet path. We're on letter M!

It was so wonderful for her to pray and see God answer her prayer. It really built up her faith. She also had lost hearing in one ear for over a month and we prayed and prayed and she was better last week. So blessed that there were these two moments in her life where she prayed and God answered her. At meal times, she's been praying, thank you God for my ears! Too sweet!
I appreciate you stopping by!

Party of Nine said...

We love Rita's! You must live near us, pretty sure Rita's was born in Baltimore :) You had a great party, that is great that you took your time! I haven't gotten around to doing every party on time, either. I find it inspiring that you are contemplating on the readings as well. Great party!


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