Prayer for the feast of St. Thomas a Becket

Taken from the Roman Missal. Feast Day December 29. ( I know we are late. Better late than never! )

O God, for the sake of whose Church the glorious Bishop Thomas fell by the sword of ungodly men: grant, we beseech Thee, that all who implore his aid, may obtain the good fruit of his petition. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who livest and reignest with Thee in the unity of the Holy Spirit, forever and ever. Amen.

From “The Times Book of Saints” ~ ” Thomas excommunicated several bishops who had coronated young Henry II without respect to his rights as archbishop of Canterbury. For Henry II that was the last straw. ‘Who will rid me of this turbulent priest?’he shouted angrily. Feeling commissioned by the king. four knights went to Canterbury to kill Thomas. “

Although Thomas Becket had not always lived like a saint, he died like one. David Hugh Farmer

To celebrate the Christmas season, this afternoon we are singing carols around the tree and saying a few prayers. Thomas is making Christmas cookies –
Coconut Macaroons from the Catholic Culture site – in honour of St Thomas a Becket.

We’ll eat these after the movies – we are going to the late afternoon showing of Night at the Museum.



The majority of my workouts are kickboxing.

This is not to say that I don’t do other workouts or workouts with weights – I do.

But kickboxing – mostly Taebo and Turbo Jam – is the mainstay of my fitness routine. And, hey, they have weight training routines, too!

You can imagine my joy at receiving two Taebo Live workouts for Christmas. These workouts have so much energy, so much fun, great music. They are OOP but I am trying to collect them secondhand – and found two on Amazon sellers to go under the Christmas tree.

So the last few days these have been my workouts. And Turbo Jam Punch Kick Jam today.

I love the endorphin rush. I feel high while kicking and punching and doing floorwork to “My Sherona.” Killer ab work seems easier when singing along with Berlin’s ” On the Metro.” Or keeping on going, yelling and singing, to burning butt work with “Boogie Fever” or “Momma Said Knock You Out.”

Taebo in particular has all the three components of fitness – cardio work, strength or resistance training and flexibility.

Last Christmas I received the book “The Taebo Way” as a present – it is also OOP but we got it secondhand.

On the way in the mail is another OOP fitness book – FIRM for Life – I love the old FIRM Classics and Crosstrainer workouts. Want to read the book. Sometimes older is better.

I also have all the old Jane Fonda workout books. 🙂

But today at Borders, I bought a new book on fitness – in keeping with my kickboxing passion.

Gleason’s Gym Total Body Boxing Workout for Women.

It looks like fun – and has a great quote from actress Hilary Swank.

Swank trained at Gleason’s Gym for the film Million Dollar Baby.

She told “Sports Illustrated” – I see many parallels between boxing and life. You have to stay in the moment, or you get hit. You have to let everything go…and you have to stay humble.

Just the same abilities that we homeschooling mothers often want to develop – living in the moment, letting go, being humble…

The Holy Innocents.

Today’s feast is the feast of the
Holy Innocents.

These are the children mentioned in St. Matthew, ii, 16-18:

Herod perceiving that he was deluded by the wise men, was exceeding angry; and sending killed all the men children that were in Bethlehem, and in all the borders thereof, from two years old and under, according to the time which he had diligently inquired of the wise men. Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremias the prophet, saying: A voice in Rama was heard, lamentation and great mourning; Rachel bewailing her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not.

Our Franciscan parish is having a Mass today for the Holy Innocents, with Bishop Fisher from the Archdiocese of Sydney in attendance.

We are very blessed with regard to our parish and priests.

According to A Continual Feast, it was customary in Europe of old to serve “baby food”, typically gruel or cereal, to the youngest person in the family or monastery or convent.

I wonder if Anthony would like me to buy him some baby food!


December 26.

The Feast of St Stephen and also Boxing Day.

We read about the tradition that the boxes placed in churches where parishioners deposited coins for the poor, were opened and the contents distributed on December 26 .

We sang Good King Wenceslas.

Tomorrow is the Feast of St John.

We will be having glasses of wine ( non alcoholic or otherwise ), decorated with lolly snakes.


Legend has it that the Emporer Domitian attempted to kill St John – by ordering him to drink a cup of poisoned wine. St John took and blessed the cup, and the poison slithered away in the form of a snake.


Embracing Christmas.

An article, with quotes from Pope Benedict XVI ( then Cardinal Ratzinger).

Christmas, Sacred and Secular

“The hectic commercialism is repugnant to us,” wrote Cardinal Ratzinger, “…. And yet, underneath it all, does it not originate in the notion of giving and thus the inner urgency of love, with its compulsion to share, to give of oneself to the other? And does not the notion of giving transport us directly into the core of the mystery that is Christmas?”


It began as a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day…

Have you read the book
Alexander and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day?

Well, today started like that. It has a happy ending, however.

My mum has had breast cancer. I have mammograms every year just in case.

Well, today there were suspicious areas during the mammogram. I needed an extra ultrasound. I needed extra tests on top of this.

While waiting for the tests, I felt extremely mortal.

The results became available while I was at work. My kind doctor and even more kind husband relayed the results to me, at work, as soon as possible.

Suspicious areas benign.


This good news, coupled with Reconciliation tonight, and then healthy low fat Subway take away for dinner ( no guilt!), made my terrible, horrible no good morning fade.

This evening is spectatcular. 🙂

Deo Gratias.

I am a grump.

A grinch.

My Advent work has been to work on being nice always when speaking to my children.

I am failing . Terribly. Horribly.

I don’t know what is wrong with me, but the more I try to speak well, even in trying situations, the more I fail.

I can relate to St Paul, on doing not what I ought but what I don’t want .

Horrible morning this morning, getting ready for the pool and Group Learning end of year party.

I have apologized and the day was good but my manner of speaking irks me.

During the final session of the Advent programme tonight, Br. mentioned that God gives us all the graces we need, through the Sacraments and especially in the Eucharist.

Well, duh, I know that but, duh, I don’t remember it all the time.


I need Reconciliation – thank heaven tomorrow is the Second Rite of Reconciliation at our church, before Christmas.

I may be failing my Advent work but, hey, I am not failing life. I have the Sacraments and God’s grace.

Hope your Advent is blessed and joyous. 🙂