This time of year the worker bees are out hunting for nectar and pollen in the apple blossoms and in the early flowers growing in our gardens. They make the most of our short growing season, and so do we.
Our farm, St Benedict’s Acres, for example, is bustling with activity. The farmers are asking for size 14 rubber boots and for auger wood bits (size 6 – 12 inches) which are used with a brace.
The nurses want to send their thanks to everyone who sent them Band-Aids, and they want you to know that the vitamin C was a huge help during the flu season.
In May and June, the pine and birch trees which surround us release a large amount of pollen triggering allergies. So the nurses could use medication for these allergies: Claritin, or other kinds. They could also use some Benadryl.
The gift shop will be at their busiest season in a few weeks, and the staff there are busily re-stocking their shelves. (All the money from what is sold is given to the poor.)
The gift shop displays are lit with small art deco lamps, generous donations from previous years, and customers often want to buy the lamps!
The gift shop staff know that this kind of lamp is hard to part with, but if you have any you are willing to donate, they would love to have some to sell. Old fashioned clocks and pocket watches are also popular items these days.
Customers have bought many of the rings and pierced earrings you sent, so the supply is now low, and they would be grateful for more. They can get the rings fixed, so, please send them even if they are broken. Their supply of silver, gold, and sterling chains on which to hang pendants is also getting low.
In the beautiful spring weather, the laundresses are hanging clothes outside, and they are still asking for line separators for their clothes lines. Pre-soak aids like Oxi Clean are also always needed.
Kate O’Donnell, who looks after cleaning, dish washing, and our grooming and toiletry supplies, thanks you for the unscented hand lotion you gave us. She says this lotion is an ongoing need in our big family.
However lovely the weather is outside, we still have lots of cleaning to do inside. Can you help us by sending corn or fiber brooms (approx. 10-12" wide), squeegees for washing windows and other surfaces, and upright vacuum cleaners? We are also in need of synthetic scrubbers and steel wool for scrubbing pots and pans.
Our kitchen, which does such a wonderful job of feeding almost a hundred of us each day, is asking for a household-size or industrial-size food processor (Cuisinart or something similar).
When we asked St. Martha’s office what they needed, they said that owing to the generous donations of these past months they are well supplied. They want to thank all our friends for what they have sent.
The farm and the gardens at the main house are alive with gardeners as well as with bees. You are a part of this work, for all of it depends on your donations. We also depend on your prayers, and we thank you for them. Know that we pray for you, too.
In Our Lady of Combermere,
Susanne Stubbs and Mark Schlingerman (May-June 2014)
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