Roráte caéli désuper,et núbes plúant jústum.

Mass in honour of Virgin Mary, Mother of our Saviour, during Advent. It is celebrated during sunrise. When the mass ends the sun has risen, symbolising the dawn of salvation, the birth of Jesus Christ.

“Drop down, ye heavens, from above,and let the skies pour down righteousness.”

Ne irascáris Dómine,
ne ultra memíneris iniquitátis:
ecce cívitas Sáncti fácta est desérta:
Síon desérta fácta est, Jerúsalem desoláta est:
dómus sanctificatiónis túæ et glóriæ túæ,
ubi laudavérunt te pátres nóstri.

Peccávimus, et fácti súmus tamquam immúndus nos,
et cecídimus quasi fólium univérsi:
et iniquitátes nóstræ quasi véntus abstulérunt nos:
abscondísti faciem túam a nóbis,
et allisísti nos in mánu iniquitátis nóstræ.

Víde Dómine afflictiónem pópuli túi,
et mítte quem missúrus es:
emítte Agnum dominatórem térræ,
de Pétra desérti ad móntem fíliæ Síon:
ut áuferat ípse júgum captivitátis nóstræ.

Vos testes mei, dicit Dóminus,
et servus meus quem elégi;
ut sciátis, et credátis mihi:
ego sum, ego sum Dóminus, et non est absque me salvátor:
et non est qui de manu mea éruat.

Consolámini, consolámini, pópule méus:
cito véniet sálus túa:
quare mæróre consúmeris,
quia innovávit te dólor?
Salvábo te, nóli timére,
égo enim sum Dóminus Déus túus,
Sánctus Israël, Redémptor túus.

Comfort ye, comfort ye my people;
my salvation shall not tarry:
why wilt thou waste away in sadness?
why hath sorrow seized thee?
Fear not, for I will save thee:
For I am the Lord thy God,
the Holy One of Israel, thy Redeemer.

Alma Redemptoris Mater, quae pervia caeli  porta manes, et stella maris, succurre cadenti,surgere qui curat, populo: tu quae genuisti,  natura mirante, tuum sanctum Genitorem,Virgo prius ac posterius, Gabrielis ab ore  sumens illud Ave, peccatorum miserere.

Winterdays and Christmas preparations

There are few things I like as prepare for Christmas. I think it is the short and cold days that ask for spending cosy days in the kitchen, preparing with cakes and chocolates and truffles…and of course our gingerbread town. My sister and I have for over 20 years made a gingerbread town for Christmas. The challenge consists of making it both tasty and also appealing for the eye. This town has changed its apparence a little every year, but the church and the train have always been present. Last year I added an abside to make it a little more a line a cathedral. Here are some pictures showing this year’s town, the summit of preparations.

Before I put the church together I decorate the parts standing up.
The most difficult stage is done, to put it together with melted sugar.
A family that is a little late for mass… This is a gift from my brother and his wife. They bought it in U.S.

Sunday colours

There is few things as beautiful as fog in the morning a winter day… A walk that lasted some hours, cold but very beautiful.

I love these lonley roads, especially on Sunday forenoons when people prefer being at home, I suppose taking a long breakfast. There is a silence in the air created, I think, by the low temperature, as if every creature is economising with even the callings to save some energy. Even the thoughts become sparse, the mind listening to the sound of birds flapping and one’s own footsteps in the snow.

A lovely walk in the snow

The snow comes and goes, and with it the reflection of the sun on the ground. One never really knows how the walk will turn out, as this walk with Toby. We had been waking for one and a half hour then suddenly the sun found its way through the clouds and we are standing there bathed in winter evening light. I appreciate these gems of moments very much. I think it is because I am not in control, and thus can receive it as a gift.

A beautiful morning

To be a farmer means that nature sets the working hours, for good and bad. For the second harvest the days were very hot which made it impossible to fetch the bales in the fields during daytime. Early mornings were then switched from sleeping to working. I am a morningbird, and will remain one. So to have the reason to wake up and begin work earlier brings with it a sort of excitement.

Early mornings during high pressure weather have often mysterious and beautiful sunrises. Since it is late in the season the trees and the fields are shrouded in fog. This morning I could not resist stopping the tractor and for a moment just admire the splendour of the sunrise together with the wild animals, the cranes with their melancholic cries, the roedeer, the buzzard and the red kite and the hares attentively listening as they ate their morning herbs.

A little friend along the way

Sometimes you encounter with someone that changes your life and how you see your life, and you think you have a long time in front of you. Then suddenly everything changes and she is gone, never to return. You are left with an imprint on your heart and the hope of seeing her in heaven.

Fourth of May a little weak lamb was born just 20% the normal size of a lamb. I found her beside a stone, calling very faintly for her mother, not able to stand and in cramps. I brought her inside the house and when I passed our Lourdes Madonna I said to it and Virgin Mary, “she is yours”. A night followed of a fight for her life, feeding her with drops of raw milk, then feeding bottle, warming her while holding her in my lap. Slowly her cramps ended, she became stable and I could see that fighting spirit in her eyes I so loved. She got the name Petite Marie, or Little Mary, Lilla Marie in Swedish.

Few persons have so capture my heart as she did. She was like a little puppy and followed me everywhere when she was not in the paddock with the other sheep. She knew her name and came when I called her.

One day when she was very little she escaped from her box and came looking for me, but entered into the cow pen until my father found her scared and bewildered calling for me.

She had a weak foreleg which our kind veterinary fixed with a bandage. He was charmed by this little lamb and never took any charge for her treatments.

One day she got very ill in clostridium, but our vet came and gave penicillin, again without charge. Slowly she recovered and was her self again.

Lilla Marie was a mild little lamb and she loved to be scratched. We always had our daily moments of scratching, petting and talking. I began planning that she perhaps could get a lamb in the future, because she had gained so much weight and was very healthy.

Suddenly she was gone. I had been away for two days and when I came home I went out to her to greet her and feed her. We had a little longer time together. She seemed a little more thirsty than usual, when I went back she called after me as she used to do.

The next day I went out and called for her. She didn’t answer. I kept looking for her. At last I found her. She was lying there in the stonhedge, dead, ma Petite Marie. Death is never beautiful and the sudden shock of seeing her lying there brought me to tears, while I still petted her little white head. The same bacteria that made her ill had caused an other illness that was incurable and very fast. She had died in just a couple of hours. Such a sorrow I felt and so many tears I shed.

My father came and helped me to bury her. I still go there and say an Ave Maria or the French Je vous salue Marie. I still cannot believe that she is gone. She died on the day she would have become three months old. So sudden. It surprises me so how little I know about the time I have got with the ones I love. This little lamb I only got three beautiful months with, I gave her to Virgin Mary and now she wanted her back. I don’t regret that I saved her, but see that as a gift, a true gift from heaven…

I miss her so very much.

Rest in Peace my little princess