After a very busy summer and autumn, November comes to us on quiet feet, its steps muted by fallen leaves and pine needles. By the time it arrives, the harvest and food processing will be over, and the fields and gardens will be bare. Though the pace will be slower for a little while, there will still be plenty to keep us busy.
Mary Davis, our head gardener, has taken a moment to take stock of her needs for next year. She is asking for bone meal, blood meal, tangle trap, rain jackets and pants, seam sealants to repair raincoats, and whiffle balls. Whiffle balls painted red, covered with tangle trap, and hung on apple trees, make good traps to catch apple maggot flies.
The farmers, whose work has slowed down for the winter, need rope (1/2 inch in diameter and wider) and a chainsaw safety helmet with ear protectors and visor.
As you can imagine, cleaning is an ongoing job in our big family, something which just about all of us take part in. Marie-Therese McLaughlin, who is in responsible for that department, would very much appreciate some Murphy’s Oil Soap for the weekly washing of our wooden dining room floor and also some rubber-backed entrance rugs and throw rugs.
The kitchen staff, who so lovingly feed us each day, is asking for coffee percolators (30c, 50c, and 100c sizes) and mouse traps.
Raandi King who is responsible for the laundry would very much appreciate the following: dish rags, steam irons in working condition, pillow cases with zippers, and cloth mattress covers (twin-size or smaller).
We are certainly blessed to have the attentive care of our nurses when we are sick. To keep us healthy and to help us become so when we are not, they are asking for the following: an exercise ball (65 cm.), multi-vitamins, Refresh Eye Gel or similar products, Anusol Ointment, and boric acid for eye wash.
St. Mary’s, the smaller community within MH Combermere, has just a few requests this month: clear 4-watt night light bulbs, spray starch (for their sacristy laundry), and rubber gloves.
Peter Anzlin of the shipping and receiving department is asking for medium and large garbage bags for the temporary storing of donated clothing.
Thank you so much for continuing to supply our office with its ongoing needs. This month they are asking for pen pillows, #10 air mail envelopes, desk organizers, and a copy holder with a moveable line guide.
Here’s a request for something that some of you—those receiving multiple copies of Restoration—receive from us every month. Our subscription department is asking for clear packing tape or wide scotch tape and 9 x 12 mailing envelopes.
In November the gift shop is in its quiet season, the season when it has shorter hours and the staff have more time to sort, clean, restore, and price donations.
They asked us to give you a big thank you for all the jewelry you sent. Earrings and bracelets are always popular as are men’s watches. Also very much in demand these days are St. Christopher medals and small statues of Mother and Child.
The gift shop staff would also be so grateful for metal cleaners, the specific kind that are good for cleaning jewelry (such as M.A.A.S. or Mister Clean), small and medium paper bags (clean and in good condition), and sewing machine light bulbs.
Karen van de Loop who runs our used book store rarely asks for anything, but this month she has some very specific requests.
With our publication of books on Dorothy Day and Catherine, and Thomas Merton and Catherine, she is seeing a renewed interest among her customers for books by and about Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton. Especially she could use copies of Seven Story Mountain.
Even if you are not able to send us something, there’s one thing you can always give us, and that is your prayers. We need your prayers in order to remain faithful to our calling. We, in our turn, carry you in our prayers and present your needs at our daily Masses.
In Our Lady of Combermere,
Susanne Stubbs and Mark Schlingerman (November 2009)
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