We are working on the clothing switch (I know... it's quite late into the spring and hot...) and I was sorting through the boys suits that hang in my closet. Clothes sorting always makes me ridiculously emotional as I remember the children in various outfits that they have long since outgrown. We have many sizes of suits hanging there and I recalled Alex's First Communion. Kevin insisted that Kevin J. wear a tie and button up shirt. Well that poor boy was used to wearing polo shirts for Mass and you would have thought the tie was going to do him in. He squirmed, tugged at his collar, lolled in the pew. My mother and I could hardly control our chuckles. I have no idea where Kevin Sr. was, maybe he was on the altar or helping with the communicants, I don't remember. Anyway, he wasn't sitting with us and I decided the next time he made a boy wear a tie, he would have to be the one to sit with them.
Now my older boys rarely attend Sunday Mass without wearing a tie and jacket. The younger boys usually 'follow suit'. :)
Dominic and his friend
We are so glad that our boys have enough respect for the Mass and our Lord, and themselves, to dress nicely for Mass. It does help that many young men at our parish also wear suits and ties or at least button up shirts.
The dress code at St. Augustine's tutorial program does not require ties or jackets but they often wear them. The boys understand that dressing neatly shows respect for their tutors, the occasion, and those around them.
Alex in composition class
Of course they dress casually at home, for youth group, or other occasions that are appropriate. But they are always fairly neat, manly and modest.
JH and Kevin playing playing floor hockey
We are very happy with the style of dress they have adopted for themselves. But it certainly makes us chuckle to remember that day Kevin J, suffered through wearing the neck tie.
From the day they are born, some of my babies are not good public sleepers. They are too intense and determined not to miss anything. I am not kidding, even as newborns. Lydia is the queen of intensity. So my arms are usually a bit sore after Sunday Mass since I don't let my littles run around when we have to go to the back of church. Yesterday, after Mass we took the family out to lunch and attended a wonderful performance of The Sound of Music by a local homeschool group. I literally held Lydia for hours.
The perk that made me so happy? You guessed it, she fell asleep for all of the second half of the show. It is such a delight because I got to snuggle her and see most of the wonderful performance whose cast included many friends.
Wonderful performance Sarah, Elizabeth and Angela! Bravo!
The last few weeks we have been thick in the midst of intense drama camp and rehearsals for a production of Shakespeare's As You Like It. Kevin played the evil brother Oliver. Alex played the evil Duke Frederick, and Monica was an extra as a Forester of Arden. Fortunately the evil characters reform and convert in the end. Both boys did a great job with their lines and made good bad guys with their height and deep imposing voices. Monica made a most lovely impoverished gentlewoman.
They did three performances, each one was magnificently acted and well attended. Our brilliant director, Dr. Henry Russell, wrote about the Catholic understanding of As You like It for the program (which Kevin Sr. beautifully laid out and designed) so that the audience might better understand Shakespeare's intent.
A Catholic Understanding of Shakespeare’s Play.
This production interprets the Forest of Arden as the Catholic world of Shakespeare’s ancestors and relatives (one of whom was executed for a plot to overthrow Queen Elizabeth and restore Catholicism to its central place in English life). Lady Claire Asquith’s great volume, Shadowplay, adds that this is also the Ardennes, a French area used as a place of exile by many noble Catholics who fled their home to preserve their faith and lives. The frame stories of the banished nobles and their usurping brothers are code for Tudor displacement of Catholic nobles by Anglican and Protestantizing accomplices willing to take their lands in reward for abandoning their faith.
The central love story of Orlando and Rosalind is a literally delightful love story, as well as an allegory of the Church’s role in instructing her defenders about what can be expected from divine versus human love. Aliena/Celia is an image of virtuous Anglicans who understand their close relation to the True Church and are trapped in a false position of opposition by those who fathered the substitute political church.
Aliena joins with Rosalind, and both brothers move from evil to salvation and even to the religious life,. These restorations reflect Shakespeare’s early optimism about the ability of Catholicism to restore justice in an England torn from her roots and to reconcile with an Anglican Church which had not yet become too different to reunite in Christian harmony.
There will be more pictures to follow as we get more in from various cameras. The whole cast was so very good and worked so very hard! Bravo! Well done.
the brothers Oliver and Orlando tussling it out
Celia, Touchstone and Rosalind
the pages and Touchstone
Touchstone's discourse on the seven degrees
the cast with their beloved director after the final performance
We didn't have anyone confirmed this year, but Monica's dear friend asked me to sponsor her. Here is the newly confirmed Regina 'Maria Soledad Torres Acosta'. Yes, that is the same confirmation name that our Monica took last year. I practiced all the way to church. "Bishop, may I present Maria Soledad Torres Acosta." It was a beautiful Confirmation Mass and I am struck again by how blessed we are by our children's friends.
My children and their classmates are held to high standards in academics, dress and deportment. Not just in their classes but their home lives as well. So the last day of classes they get to let off a little steam by having a dress wacky day.
Alex is Bond, James Bond. (Not that he has ever seen a James Bond movie. But, the cool spy gadgets are awesome...) The fabulous Upper School I students.