Friday, October 29, 2010

Birthday Au Humilitas

One of my favorite quotes comes from St. Francis of Assisi, who said, "The greatest act of humility is allowing yourself to be loved."  To me, his words, though simple, are profound in so many ways.

On the spiritual plane, contemplating the truth that God Himself would die for me, because he loves me so intensely requires heaps of humility.  Then, to realize that this supreme sacrifice won for me a fount of mercy that is poured out only upon the condition that I am receptive, requires yet another heap of humility.

On the practical plane, as a mother, I find myself rising and resting each day with the intent to serve, to give, to love, because that is the moment-to-moment calling of my vocation.  Yet, to receive, to let others love, care for, serve and give to me isn't always easy.  This year, on the anniversary of my birth, Steve and the boys came to the calling, and I, only having to acquiesce, to submit humbly to their love, was treated like a queen!

Steve huddled together with the boys and together they decided to cook me supper (bliss!).  I'm always tickled at how moms and dads have different approaches to cooking.  Steve's plan usually goes something like this:

1.  Load up the troops and head to the grocery store with focus and determination.(Notice, that does not include a list or a recipe :)
2.  Browse the magazine section of the grocery store and look for titles like Gourmet...(something or other), Bon Appetite, or in this case, Food and Wine
3.  Scan the chosen magazine, as the boys stand poised like angels (wink, wink), and narrow your sights on that one recipe that sounds like torture to a family of men but mom would take uncontrollable delight in (i.e.  vegetables and spices that require master of Latin roots to pronounce).
4.  Execute looks of confusion and mystification and wait for intuitive persons of extreme charity to announce "help is on the way" as they direct you to ingredients like curry powder and ginger root, and finally polishing off their tutorial with a sprinkle of affection and compliments for the boys.  After all, what's cuter than a young dad with four boys shopping for mommy?? (Thanks to any of you who helped my hubby shop that day!)
5.  Pull over at the liqueur store on the way home (no explanation needed!).
Chef Husband grating that mysterious ginger root for the Curry Chicken with Roasted Vegetables. Sigh. Equally yummy :).
I completely concur with Food Network's star Sandra Lee who says, "We eat with our eyes first!"  Though the boys prefer the term, "We eat with our eyes shut" when it comes to veggies, I couldn't resist snapping a pic of the beautiful colors on the prep pans.
Ooh La La! It's love on a's love surrounding the platter!!
He bakes too?? Nah, he's got connections (Dillon's bakery connections:)

After dinner entertainment was the song composed of laughter alone, laughter that erupted from the repetitive listening to of the Hoops and Yo-Yo birthday cards the boys gave me with sound.  They were truly hysterical!  I wish I could bottle that laughter.  It's those moments that you want to freeze and unthaw on difficult days to soothe the nerves....

I couldn't get enough of their silence....anticipation....smiles....giggles....and eruptions of laughter.
I was assured with a wink from Andrew that I could indeed count on birthday dinner every year.  After all, who can resist the opportunity to practice humility every now and then??

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