Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Making a Vasilopita for the New Year

It has always been an honor to be named after St. Basil.  Known for his generosity and care for the poor, St. Basil was also a brilliant theologian.  St. Basil the Great lived during the Fourth Century and was one of the most favored and respected bishop saints in the Orthodox Church, so much so that he is remembered with two feast days:

January 1st on his name day (the Feast of the Circumcision of Our Lord)

January 30th along with St. Gregory and St. John Chrysostom, on the feast of the Three Hierarchs.


Tradition tells us that St. Basil would hide coins in breads and cakes to give to the poor.  This is why we make a cake or bread with a hidden coin on New Year's Day.

Need a recipe for a Vasilopita cake?  I have a recipe for one on the Orthodox Christian Network.

Monday, December 22, 2014

In Defense of Santa

I’ve always liked Christmas, and I’ve always loved Santa.  He was the one I could count on for years to hear my prayers.  It sounds terrible to write that now at my age, but when I was a four, he was the closest thing to Jesus that I could possibly grasp.  Yes, there, I said it.  A man far, far away knows if we’ve been bad or good, and in his mercy, is willing to give me a gift all the same.  Yup, for the longest time, Santa was my Jesus.  ... Read the full post on the Sounding...


Thursday, December 04, 2014

Today's JAR- Celebrating St. Nicholas

Today's JAR- just a reminder

Saturday is the Feast of St. Nicholas. In this season of Santa Claus and gift giving, celebrating St. Nicholas with charity and hospitality is a great way to remember and honor the saint. 

I find it ironic when we spend the day shopping for Christmas gifts, playing Santa, and end up too busy to acknowledge the saint who inspired him. Start the day with Liturgy, and drop off a donation to a shelter, visit a nursing home or even treat someone to lunch. 

St. Nicholas is a wonderful and beloved saint of the Orthodox Church. 
  His Apoylitikion in Greek on Youtube...

Apolytikion of Nicholas the Wonderworker in the Fourth Tone

A model of faith and the image of gentleness, the example of your life has shown you forth to your sheep-fold to be a master of temperance. You obtained thus through being lowly, gifts from on high, and riches through poverty. Nicholas, our father and priest of priests, intercede with Christ our God that He may save our souls.


For the parents..
One tradition is to leave candy, money and fruit for your children on the feast of
St. Nicholas, in memory of the many people he helped through charity. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Secret to Wanting Less


Do not desire many things--
more than you have, that which is far away.
Rather, seek to take care of what you have
so as to sanctify it.
- Gerontissa Gavrielia
This quote from Mother Gavrielia has comforted me for many years.  I think it's a perfect reflection for the Thanksgiving holiday.  There are many ways we might not feel satisfied and are convinced that having more and different would give us peace.  But that is rarely true.
I hope that these weeks of advertised abundance and preparation for our celebration of "Christmas" do not take away our sanctification and peace in the saving news of our Lord's Birth.  I hope these coming days are days of  feeling blessed, satisfied and peaceful; not wanting.  If we are finding ourselves in want, let us be sure we have fully taken care of what we already have. 


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Life Simply Lived

Matthew 6

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.


When it comes to a life simply lived, no one does it better than the monks and nuns of the Orthodox Church. Committing themselves to a life of prayer, askesis (strict self discipline) and obedience, they live with few possessions and luxuries. The monastic folk song, God’s Love Abides, brings to mind the passage in Matthew 6: 25-34, that speaks of how the birds of the air and the flowers of the field have no worries. Monastics take this to heart for comfort and assurance. It’s relevant in the lyrics that sweetly describe a person’s longing for the monastic life..

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Christmas Cards On Sale Now

Send your hundreds of friends the cheap Christmas cards from the Super Stores, 
But send your favorite people a card from V's Cardbox.  

The Thanksgiving Sale is still on!  Christmas Cards 1/2 off. 

Today's JAR - Keeping Christ in Christmas

Today's JAR just a reminder

The Advent Fast begins on Saturday, November 15th... But since the 14th is a fast day, TODAY is the last day to eat meat (and depending on how strictly you are planning to fast... )

Remember to stay focused on the feast day and less on the festivities.  After all, Keeping Christ in Christmas doesn't mean saying "Merry Christmas" instead of "Happy Holidays." There is a deeper meaning to this phrase.  Keeping Christ in Christmas means that we respect that this is a religious holiday and are following the traditions the church has protected.  We fill these days with prayer, fasting and alms giving not  lists to Santa for our wants, Christmas parties and overspending on gifts to give to friends, who already have everything they could possible need; meanwhile, ignoring the poor and shut-in. 

this card is available at

Keep Christ in Christmas... And remember it is a religious holiday.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Home with a Cold on a Sunday Morning

I’m home with a cold. 

It’s a crummy day.

Usually my day is me trying to do as many things as I can, all at the same time.  To say I've perfected multitasking would be stretching any understanding of its implications.  It’s better illustrated as Lucille Ball working in the chocolate factory; with my hands waving hysterically.  Today I am home and unable to even try to get anything done.

I am glad it’s Sunday, crummy cold and all. 

As disappointed as I feel for missing church today, I am feeling grateful for my yiayia (grandmother in Greek).  She taught me to respect and love Liturgical Time forty years ago.  I was just a kid and my sisters and I were sleeping over her house because my parents went away for the weekend… a wedding or funeral, I don’t remember.  But on that Sunday morning we didn't go to Church.  Yiayia didn't drive.  I woke anticipating a morning to play checkers, cards or watch TV.   I quickly learned she had a strict rule for Sunday mornings.  Neither games nor a cartoon on Sunday mornings until church was over.  Nothing until noon.  No chores or dinner prep for her either.  Her reasons were clear.  Sunday is a day for Liturgy and prayer.  In our town, just a few miles away, faithful and able Orthodox Christians had gathered for Divine Liturgy, and even though we weren't there, we were to honor it. 

I can’t thank her enough for that lesson.

Fast forward forty years.  I wonder what my yiayia would say about all the LIVE liturgies available online.  I imagine she would love it.  She’d probably sit with her full attention on the Liturgy, loving every moment and the gifts modern technology gives.  I doubt she’d be folding her laundry (or writing a blog post) while it was playing in a feeble attempt to use it as an excuse to multitask.  No, she would remember to keep Sunday mornings in prayer and as close to Liturgy as she could get.  I miss my Yiayia Ekaterina.  May her memory be eternal.

Need to find a live Liturgy for your sick day?  Follow this link on or simply search LIVE ORTHODOX LITURGY. 

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Perfection is Possible in Prayer


Teach me to treat all that comes to me throughout the day with peace of soul,
and with the firm conviction that Your will governs all.

Lately I've been waking up with brilliant ideas, only to realize after I fully wake, that I'm not as smart as I thought I was.  Usually I wake thinking I'm really funny.  But lately I have been feeling brilliant. 

This morning, after a week of many accomplishments and more disappointments, I woke with this thought...

How perfect do I expect my life to be and what is my definition of perfect? 
And what is reasonable?


I've had a hard week. 

I've had a great week. 

I did well in my new job, I planned a lovely retreat, the retreat was cancelled, my computer crashed, we might actually have a few more days left to back it up before I MUST buy a new one, I had a cold, I'm over my cold, my aunt died and I couldn't go to the funeral, and a few things too personal for this blog... But I'd have to say... I don't think it could have been any better, while I am sure it could have been worse. 

I am glad I didn't focus on only one of the many recent events.  I am thankful that I was able to stay calm in the storm.  "How?" you ask?   I attribute it to the following prayer.

The Morning Prayer of Metropolitan Philaret of Moscow

O Lord,  grant that I may meet the coming day in peace.

Help me in all things to rely upon Your Holy Will.

In every hour of the day, reveal Your will to me.

Bless my dealings with all who surround me.

Teach me to treat all that comes to me throughout the day with peace of soul,
and with the firm conviction that
Your will governs all.

In all my deeds and words, guide my thoughts and feelings.

In unforeseen events, let me not forget that all are sent by You.

Teach me to act firmly and wisely, without embittering and embarrassing others.

Give me the strength to bear the fatigue of the coming day with all that it shall bring.

Direct my will.

Teach me to pray.

Pray Yourself  in me.


I'd have to say, I think the prayer was heard.  I encourage you to practice this prayer. 

Prayer is a very powerful thing.  It is often under estimated.  Why do I pray?  Why do I value it?  It's not just because it works.  In my head, I visualize a sign at the gates of heaven (like in restaurants) that we must have seen yet missed on our way to earth that read:  I am God.  I reserve the right to control your life.  If you ask Me, I will help you.  If you follow Me, I will lead you.  If you deny Me, I will deny you.  Do your best.  So long as you persevere you will be ok.  But if you give up I can't help you.  I reserve the right to control you life.  It's the only way LOVE is possible. 

Why do I pray?  I pray so that God can intervene.  I pray to welcome Him into my life.  I pray so that I might learn how to love by living according to His will. 

So I encourage you to pray the prayer of St. Philaret.  It might help you to also see that our expectations of perfect are all dependent on if we are living according to God's will for us or our own.  No matter what happens, if we are searching for God's will and doing our best to live it, our life will be perfect according to His expectations. 

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Today's JAR- Modern Christianity vs Orthodoxy

Today's JAR. just a reminder

Modern Christianity says

"God created me and He doesn't make mistakes." 

Orthodoxy says

"Deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Him
and He will transform you into His image
so that you can become who you were meant to be,"

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Where Have I Been?

Wow!  It feels like forever since I blogged anything.  Have you missed me?  I sure have missed you!  I have been  so distracted with a retreat I am planning and a new part time gig, that I haven't had time to share any recipes or any other deep thoughts. 

But I can say in all certainty that you have been on my mind. 

I have at least three recipes waiting to be posted, including the vegan moussaka and a feta cream cheese.  I have two crafts I want to share: one a laminated icon and the other a calendar to explain the moveable feasts. I want to tell you about my new job too.  It's been a blessing. 

So for now I'll just say, it's nice to be on a regular fasting schedule.  It's nice to see so many "Thankful for" lists on FB.  And it's nice to know you are here too.

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Another Fasting Feast Day

September 14th is the day we remember the Elevation of the Holy Cross.  It's the second major feast day of the new church calendar year.  It's a good way to reflect upon what Christianity really is: To follow Christ means to "pick up your cross." 

Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.   For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it.  For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and is himself destroyed or lost?  -Luke 9:23-25 

To honor the importance of the day and what the cross is, the Church has designated this feast day as a fasting day.  And not just a meat free day, but a strict fast day.

This dichotomy of a fasting feast is appropriate for today as the cross was the tool for torture and killing of Christ, but it also reveals the power of the resurrection. We all have something that we are struggling with.  Many times we run from the struggle due to fear or weakness.  But there are times when we accept our cross, we also experience the joy of the resurrection. 

If you need a new fasting recipe, follow the Lenten Recipe page above for my top posts, or search "Lenten" over to the right. 

The Feast Day's Apolytikion Hymn
Lord, save Your people and bless Your inheritance,
granting our rulers to prevail over adversaries,
and protecting Your commonwealth by Your Cross.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Keeping a Vigil Olive Oil Lamp

And you shall command the children of Israel that they bring you pure oil of pressed olives for the light, to cause the lamp to burn continually (Exodus 27.20)


As a child, I remember always having an olive oil vigil lamp to light up the icons in my room.  It was comforting because I didn’t like my bedroom too dark and it seemed like something living was there to comfort me… breathing in the oxygen, giving off heat.  Its reflection on the icons of Christ and the Virgin Mary was all I saw in my dark room.  I never felt alone when my vigil lamp was lit.  I have continued to maintain one as the years have passed.

Since the lamp is an open flame, I am careful where I place it.  We have ours on a tall dresser and have mounted the icons on the wall behind it.  It can’t be knocked over and it doesn’t heat anything above it to be a fire hazard. 

His Eminence Metropolitan Alexios of Atlanta showed me  a quick and easy way to light an oil vigil lamp using a cotton ball for the wick.   Click here for the video 

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  

Yes, that's right!   This is the beginning of the new ecclesiastical calendar.  We start the cycle of feast and fasts September 1st.   And how?  The first of the twelve major feasts days is the Nativity (Birth)of the Theotokos. 

September 1st isn't her real birthday.   But it's not like she is 8 and has to celebrate her birth on the exact day.  It's more of an honor that the celebration of Christ's incarnation and resurrection begins with her birth because it was her obedience that brought the Light into the world.

So, Happy New Year! 

Friday, August 22, 2014

We All Lost in Mosul

Here is an interview of people from Mosul who have been chased out of their homes.

I have been thinking of the nuances of Orthodoxy that have been lost when so many have died in Mosul.  Little habits, traditions, expressions of faith that have been buried.  Although we are full members of the faith after our baptism, I am referring to how we express our faith. 
I think of the many little habits I've acquired since moving to the south... (or that I am painfully aware that I haven't) dyed hair, painted nails, asking "How's your mom and family?"   And I think that if I can be impressed upon, even at my age, by my environment, what would it have been like to live among Christians who have been Christians since the time of Christ.  How did they express themselves in everyday living?  How did they treat each other?  How did they deal with conflict?  What did they consider to be common sense?  

And I wonder, if the fullest possible expression of Orthodox Christianity were left up to me and my family, what would we be leaving the next generation?   It would only be a grain of sand on a beach, in comparison. 

I weep for what was lost in life and in Christianity when the terrorists attacked Mosul. 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

It Transfigures- An Orthodox Comic Strip

My newest endeavor...  It Transfigures... A monthly comic strip about a little altar boy named Yianni who gets into mischief.

Now available:

Friday, August 15, 2014

Today's JAR- Year End Evaluations

Today's JAR     just a reminder

Today is the Dormition of the Virgin Mary and the last major feast of the Orthodox church calendar.  

In birth, you preserved your virginity; in death, you did not abandon the world, O Theotokos.
 As mother of life, you departed to the source of life, delivering our souls from death by your intercessions. 
Apolytikion for the Dormition

The church calendar is cyclical, as any calendar, but ours begins in September with the Nativity (Birth) of the Theotokos and ends with her Dormition.  Tradition teaches that three days after she died her body went into heaven and she didn't have to wait for the Second Coming.
And here we are at the end of summer, waiting to start a new school year, a new church year and new beginning.  It's time for us to take a moment and reflect on our spiritual progress.  Have we been faithful to the teachings of the Orthodox faith?  Have we lived a life that reflects Christ?  Would we be guilty of being Christians if proof were shown?  
Our New Year is coming September 1st.  It's time to start thinking about our New Year Resolutions.  While the earth is preparing for its dormition, let us focus on how we are going to express and reveal the life of Christ in our daily living.  Will we be more devoted to prayer, fasting and almsgiving? 
I hope that you find hope and encouragement in the new year and that it offers you and your family all that your hearts desire. 
On the theme of Dormition, I find it even more interesting that the Church uses the dormant season to celebrate the Virgin's life into the world, when spring would have physically made more sense... but it is in our death to the world that we find life. 

Saturday, August 09, 2014

My Thoughts on Current Events.

I just watched an interview with Sean Hannity and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu Interviewed on International Television Networks, including American Fox News, German ZDF and French CANAL+ iTele.  I really wish the Orthodox church (Christians) weren't caught in the middle of all of this... meaning.... we are not the terrorists but we have been caught in their snares.  We don't have missiles but we are now targets.  We aren't aggressive yet we have become a threat.  We don't have boarders to protect but our place was there along side the others in the holy lands where God revealed His Son to humanity. 

We have been caught in the crossfires of this war.  And it isn't the first time. 

I believe what he says about the fanatic Islamists.  Eventually they will want the whole world to be Muslim.  Anyone who has a history intertwined with Constantinople and Greece still hears stories how the Turks took away their land.   The Turks stole their churches.  The saints were martyred and beheaded before and they are again today.

We want to be in peace. We want our holy sites and churches.  The history of Christianity is about to be erased.  2000 years of history will be forgotten and we will be left with our current limitations.  Can you maintain and teach all that Christianity is without the history of the Church?  The Bible is a part of the whole story.  There are still the saints, the relics, the iconography, the sacraments, the teachings... Love?  Love cannot be properly defined without the Church.  (Love is from God and without the Church we can no longer protect how we define God, Love, nor the Scriptures.)

So for me the only comfort I have is prayer.  Nothing else makes sense.  

Friday, August 08, 2014

Allow your children to "suffer" in the pews

It's Friday and I'm sure we all have plans for tonight after a long work week. But it's the season for prayer and fasting for the Feast of the Dormition of the Theotokos. (The Falling asleep of the Virgin Mary.)

Christians are being persecuted is the Middle East. They are threatened to convert, pay a tax or die. They are taken into slavery. They have been left to starve to death on a mountain.

We have all the freedoms to worship and our churches are empty during this time of crisis. Please consider changing your Friday plans to attend Paraklesis. Allow your children to "suffer" in the pews for an hour as we gather to pray to the Panagia for the children who are truly suffering persecution and genocide in Iraq.

Just tell them, "There are children in the world who need our prayers tonight.  We are going to go to church and ask the Virgin Mary to protect them and guard them against danger.  We have the freedom and therefore the responsibility to do this for them.  When church is over we can go back to doing what we planned.  But for 45 minutes we will pray for the world." 

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Where did the time go?

Did you notice that only a few posts ago I was reflecting on the beginning of summer vacation... and tomorrow I am going to register the boy for school.  The chaos and casual vibe of summer is coming to an end.  Wow the time flew! 

Good thing!  I have a pile of blog posts and recipes waiting to be written.

Until then, the old recipes still work.  Search though my older posts and try one out.  I highly recommend the shrimp and rice or the vegan spanakopita since we are still in the Panagia's Fast (August 1-14.) 

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

In Honor of the Feast of Transfiguration

"He revealed Himself as far as they could bear."

I found when returning from seminary, admitting I wasn't the best student, that the faith I was studying was not the expression of faith my mother was practicing.  I had internalized the faith with my new found information and she was physically expressing the faith with prayer, fasting, and those few things that seemed unnecessary.  In return I was justified but she was fulfilled.  

This is one reason I write my blog.  I too want to be fulfilled.  I also want to help others who are struggling in this way.

When we are struggling in our faith and in our lives one of the first bits of advice that is freely given is that prayer can help. Prayer is the answer.  Prayer will reveal what you are missing.   But what is prayer?  And how does it differ from worship? Is the Liturgy prayer or worship?  Is the Paraklesis service prayer or worship?  Is serving the poor prayer or worship? 

It seems to me that both prayer and worship are self emptying and God-filling.  The difference being (simply put) prayer is when we are aware of God's presence and we are in the moment... we communicate, we ask for help and guidance, we are at peace.   But worship is how we respond to the reality that He is God and we are created.

In worship we respond to the structure that was handed down, preserved through the Church by the Holy Spirit, and relate to God in a way that He has instructed.  I have often thought that to worship God in any other way than what had been handed down through the Church has the potential of being offensive to God in the same I way relate with my mother or my father as parent/child and not friends, siblings or equals.  God has made it clear how He wants us to relate with Him, not for His ego but for our limited ability to comprehend God's fullness.   For example, Liturgy, is our training ground to prepare us for Heaven... we practice relating to God through the worship of the Liturgy so that when we are fully aware of His presence we know what to do and we don't fumble around. 

In the Apolytikion of Transfiguration, we sing "He revealed Himself as far as they could bear." 

There is so much about God that we couldn't possible understand.  I hope that we will acknowledge tomorrow's feast day with humility and thanksgiving that God has offered us the Church and the tools of prayer, fasting and almsgiving as a means to understand Him as much as we can bear... which naturally implies the fullness of our limitations.

Friday, August 01, 2014

Returning to the Classics with PB&J.

One of the most basic sandwiches around is the classic peanut butter and jelly.   It's a childhood favorite (unless you or a classmate have an allergy to peanuts.)  We used to eat them all the time. Crunchy peanut butter and grape jelly on soft (mushy) white bread.  It was even better when cut into four squares, as opposed to triangles.  I remember getting into trouble for not eating the crusts. 

I had forgotten all about PB&J until I found myself making them for our son. He loves them!  Can eat them everyday if I let him... even the crusts.  And that's when I was reintroduced to the perfect sandwich.  It possesses the balanced combination of creamy, crunchy, sweet and salty.  I just love them now!   And with the Fast for the Panagia, it is an easy go-to for protein and energy.  

I still prefer the classic crunchy peanut butter and grape jelly but I toast my wheat bread and cut the slice in half, diagonally.   Do you have a favorite combination you can suggest? Share it with us below.

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Summer Vacation When Me Time Becomes Our Time

I'm stuck! 

I'm stuck because I'm off my balance creatively, actively and prayerfully.  I'm off my routine... any routine.  And I'm scared.   I'm scared because summer vacation starts in a few hours following today's half day of school and I am not prepared to handle another schedule when my schedule is so off.  

Usually my day is structured as Me Time in the mornings and Your Time in the afternoons.  Me Time isn't about eating bonbons.   It's more like uninterrupted time to do laundry, dishes, errands, TV, volunteer work, and facebook.  Your Time is dinner prep, asking about their day, and staring our son down while he resists his homework, which alone can take 3 hours for a one hour work load.  So I am a little scared that I will be losing my Me Time especially since soon it will all be changing to Our Time...

I am not sure what Our Time is going to look like now that our son is older.  He is more capable of responsibilities around the house and interested in his independence.  This would be a good time to teach him a few chores/skills and see what he does with them.  But it is still Our Time because I have to keep an eye on him at all times or we will end up with another curiosity moment when we find out if the screw he found can put a hole in the wall and if so, how big can the hole get before it's an eyesore.  Or the "Sure this is how she said it should be done but did she ever consider doing it this way?" philosophy he has when folding towels becomes a science experiment involving a remote control car and  make-shift pulley system. 

I imagine this is going to be a summer of learning for all of us. 

I also think this will have to be done in a more structured way than ever before... incorporating a specific time for meals, not just when we are hungry.  A morning routine with goals and parameters and not just when we get to it... and an afternoon routine of fun and rest because this summer we will schedule rewards and work around the hottest times of the day...   This will mean a specific time for chores, work and play...  This summer our list includes bowling*, sewing, swimming, cooking, gardening, traveling, sketching, libraries, camping... A few day trips to the beach, zoo and monastery too... I have great expectations.

I also hope we can prepare crockpot recipes, garden, and even chant a few weekday services.

I am not sure how my blog is going to transition during this time.  I have several recipes I've photographed but haven't' posted yet.  I have a few lessons on the church calendar and reflections from the last retreat I led in FL.  I also think I want to try a few video blogs for the Sounding.  I know I must sell more of my cards for V's Cardbox.    if I hope to expand my card line.  I've had several requests for blank cards. 

So here we are.  The time has come.   Ready?  Set.  Go!  Let the Summer Vacation begin!

*In case you were wondering, I found a way to bowl 2 games for free through a program called  KIDS BOWL FREE.

Feel free to leave a comment on how your schedule changes during the summer. 

Friday, May 30, 2014

Tis the Season... Letting Go of Pascha

Every Sunday is a celebration of our Lord's Resurrection.  During the Paschal Season, 39 days after Easter, there were a few things we did differently during Liturgy to celebrate the season.  Now that Ascension has come, those things are no longer done.  Have you noticed?  Will you see the changes?  Do you know what to look for when you go to church on Sunday to know that the Paschal Season is over? 

First you will notice that we no longer say or sing "Christ is risen."  This hymn and greeting are reserved for the Paschal Season; and I understand is also sung during funerals for monastics.  You probably stopped saying it weeks ago.  It can seem a little forced outside of the actual celebration of Easter, but you will notice it is no longer sung during Liturgies until next year.  I miss it already. 

The icon of Christ is hanging on the cross in the altar.   On Holy Friday when we were participating in the service where Christ is removed from the cross as part of the Gospel reading, the priest carried the icon of Christ into the altar (tomb) wrapped in a white sheet.  Later the cross was returned to its regular place behind the altar table and was left bare, that is until Ascension (yesterday.)

Following the consecration of the Gifts, we will return (I think) to singing the hymn, "Truly is it Meet." to the Theotokos.  During the Paschal Season we sang "The Angel Cried Out..." (that your Son is risen from the tomb.)

A few more things you might notice:  the priest's vestments will no longer be white (or red) and the Resurrection banner should be put away.  Just more signs that the Paschal season is over and it's time to move on to the next Feast... Ascension and then Pentecost*.  

Kontakion for Ascension,
in the Plagal of the Second Tone 
O Christ our God, upon fulfilling Your dispensation for our sake, You ascended in Glory, uniting the earthly with the heavenly. You were never separate but remained inseparable, and cried out to those who love You, "I am with you and no one is against you." 

* Although we stopped kneeling during the consecration of the Gifts, we will continue to stand until the Kneeling Prayers with Pentecost, June 8th.