first friday vigil

Sacred Heart of Jesus

For several months we have been going to either Dover DE or Hamilton NJ for our first Friday of the month vigil. For those who wants to know, this vigil is part of the Alliance of the Two Hearts reparation. The vigil starts with a mass celebration then saying the two mysteries of the rosary, followed by prayers for the children and couples. It is followed by nine offices where readings are read that corresponds to the office and the reader also share a prayer in relation to the office read, then the remaining two mysteries of the rosaries. A short break then continues with the Divine Mercy, then the Saturday Office and ends with the first Saturday mass celebration. During all these, there is a confession for all who wanted to get it.

This month, was our very first vigil in our new parish, Infant Jesus. This parish was a merger of two parishes: Saint John Vianney in Deptford and Saint Margaret in Woodbury. Early this spring we were given a home for our Friday prayer meeting at the Saint Vianney location and now we were allowed to hold our vigil at the Saint Margaret location. We felt really blessed after the months that we’ve been doing our prayer meeting in different houses of the members.

I took these pictures during our short break as a souvenir as well as practice. I will take pictures whenever I can because the more you practice the better you get. The first picture was taken outside with really low light and I had to really slow down the shutter to get more ambient light (I took one out take to get a baseline of the exposure). The second picture was inside the church. Both pictures were just given a minor adjustments in Lightroom.

the altar

day at the beach

ocean city NJ

Several of us planned to go to the beach, it was some sort of a send out to our college bound kids for the first time. We planned to go to Ocean City, NJ because it was suggested that it was better than Wildwood and closer than Cape May. We planned what food to bring, I guess to cut down on expenses when we get there, sounds reasonable.

We were planning to leave early that Saturday morning, but a friend called in and informed us that there was thunderstorm and it was raining down at the shore. We thought that we should not go but rather go to nearby lake or even go to another friend’s house to just use the pool. After long discussion, we just agreed that we go to the beach anyway and if it was indeed raining or whatever that we head back on home and just use the pool. It was just an hour drive anyway.

My family packed up and headed out for the beach and we got there close to noon and met up with a few families who got there earlier. It was a fine weather, it was not that hot and the breeze was cooler. Our place in the beach was setup with a decent size table for all our food and we had several umbrellas up to give us shades. Our kids went for a swim while we, adults, just sat back and enjoyed.

I brought my camera with a 200 mm f/2.8 lens and I also used the borrowed 2x extender. That’s all I shot my camera with. As you will see in the picture I posted as well as the pictures in the gallery (if you click on the picture). I enjoyed using it a lot, however, I think I need to use a monopod or even a tripod to get a steady shot because my hands were shaky, either because of the weight or they were just shaky.

We spent most of the day and left the beach to attend to another friend’s party in Sicklerville, NJ. It was a busy day for us indeed. Enjoy life all the time, I suppose whenever you can.


cherry picking


kids at a cherry farm

Early this summer, just about the end of this school year, we went cherry picking at Rowand Farm in Glassboro, NJ. We actually had this impromptu plan the night before in one of our get together. We got there almost mid day, imagine how hot it was. The cherry tree was not a tall tree and yet we manage to get shelter from its shade. My kids did all the picking while I tried taking pictures but it was really not great when the sun is way up there . The kids really enjoyed cherry picking or was it because they were just with friends out to have a great time.

I paid for the harvest and the kids visited the nearby strawberry farm while I waited for them in the stall where it’s much cooler under the shades. Hats off to the farmers who brave to be out in the field working hard to provide us their produce daily.

After, the time at the farm we went to eat at a newly opened buffet, Tepanyaki Grill in Blackwood NJ.