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Showing posts from November, 2010

And Advent Begins with Hope

So we saw the close of yet another liturgical year with Christ the King and welcomed the start of a new one with the First Sunday of Advent.  Thinker demonstrated her excitement with the dramatic flip of the Church missal back to the beginning.  It's been a busy time for the family as of late, but I have at the very least begun to mentally prepare for all the hubbub of the upcoming, wrapping, brainstorming, baking and more shopping.  Past years have been so busy with the outside activities of the season, that at times, the true spirit of Advent gets lost.  It's so easy to lose that special spirit, when there is so much to be done.  We are meant to be waiting....and hoping.  And that's tough for a busy Mom.  This last Sunday's homily brought to mind that special time of anticipation that I often lose each year due to the many tasks that are awaiting me. Mentally, I do think, I'm trying to freeze time a bit.  Stop some random activity to truly

Happy Thanksgiving

O Lord that lends me life, Lend me a heart replete with thankfulness. ~William Shakespeare

A Positive of Large Families

Let's face it, having more than two or three kids requires unique sacrifice.  And that sacrifice can come in a variety of ways.....financially, mentally, physically, socially, and probably a few other 'lly' words that we don't necessarily need to remind ourselves of to get the point.  There are many things that get more difficult with more children.  I won't sugar coat it.  I won't pretend life gets easier with every new addition to the family.  Trust me.  I've got five.  Anyone with a larger family will tell you the same.  Life gets a little harder, and it's a unique and special calling from God to be blessed with many children.  He can count on you, and does for each of these little souls.  It's a gift, no doubt, but one with consequences.  Life changes. The laundry alone can be overwhelming. Now, having said all that....I'll tell you there are so many more blessings of a large family that outweigh any negatives I could possibly post here. 

Random Moment

Serious:  Mom, would you have married Daddy if he was a cheater? Mom:  Would I have married Daddy if he was a cheater?, I guess I wouldn't have married him then. Serious:  Really?  Oh.  OK. Mom:  Why do you ask? Serious:  Well, I DID want to marry this boy in my class.  And he wants to marry me, but, Mom, he's a cheater.  He doesn't play fair. Mom:  Oh, I see.  Well, what do you think about that? Serious:  Well, I don't want to marry a cheater.  I don't want someone who cheats with me. Mom:  Honey, remember you can't get married when you are six.  You know that right?  Serious:  Yes.  I know.  But when I am older, I don't want to marry someone who isn't fair. Mom:  I agree.  Good decision.  Daddy never cheats.  He always plays fair. Serious:  Yep, I want to marry someone like Daddy.

Small Successes Friday?

Alas, here I am again, late with Small Successes.  I suppose I am just meant to recap the week on Friday.  Small Successes is just a way to recap little ways where we found success in the week.  All those little successes add up to one big triumph.  It helps to see what has been accomplished in the week. 1.)  Attended school parent meeting, was actually sociable this time. 2.)  Kept up exercise and diet plan this week.  Weight has stabilized.  Strength training has begun. 3.)  After seeing empty fridge and pantry, came up with creative lunch snack.....What?  Marshmallows isn't one of the four food groups? In Progress: 4.)  Will attend all school Mass today, and clean house. 5.)  Focusing on patience, compassion and generosity with my time. Have some to share?  Go Here!

Peace Thieves

Ok, so I recently did a rant on Modern Day Vampires ....and now I've got a new one:  Modern Day "Thieves".  I am not referring to the A-typical definition of a thief....someone who might take a material, personal possession without permission. What I refer to, is that person(s) who manages to take a little bit of our peace away from us.  It's like a tiny sliver of your soul stolen away by some inconsideration, some neglect, or some active abuse of power. I certainly can admit, that keeping peace in my own soul, is more my own responsibility rather than everyone else's, but there are those, who no matter what peace you bring to a situation, revel in chaos, disorder and division and try to steal that snipped of peace away, regardless of the joy and calm that once resided there. These individuals love chaos.  They love conflict.  They rejoice at your discomfort, that squint your eyes made, that shift in your seat, your stuttering words spit out with no coheren

A Knight's Code

An induction ceremony was conducted on Friday, and our Carefree is now a Knight.  I thought I'd post this Code of Conduct, as I was thoroughly impressed that the expectations of an altar server are so noble. Knights of the Altar:  Code of Conduct 1.  A Knight honors and loves his Lord Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. 2.  A Knight skillfully wields the weapons of the spiritual life:  Sacred Scripture, the liturgy, the sacraments, prayer, and spiritual direction. 3.  A Knight gains strength through his daily prayers. 4.  A Knight responds with loyal and heroic obedience to his parents, parish priest and teachers. 5.  A Knight bravely defends his brothers and sisters, especially the needy. 6.  A Knight bravely controls his impulses, showing mettle in his personality. 7.  A Knight fights to fulfill all his obligations perfectly. 8.  A Knight conquers new friends for his Lord Jesus Christ. 9.  A Knight defends the truth and his neighbor's honor. 10.  A Knight is noble and

Small Successes Thursday

Celebrate small successes as they all add up to one big triumph! 1.)  Went to the Circus.  It truly is the Greatest Show on Earth. 2.)  Made homemade pumpkin pie from real pie pumpkins.   First time ever!  Delicious! 3.)  Met with Financial Advisers.  Plan in place for:  continued 401K contributions, sudden death and long-term disability insurance.  Next:  Will.  It feels good to be prepared for life's unexpected twists and turns. In Progress: 4.)  Laundry, laundry, laundry.  Does it ever end? Have some to share?  Go Here!

Creativity at it's Best

Serious brought me her latest creation in preparation for the Advent Season....something she fashioned out of a Kleenex box, toilet paper rolls, construction paper, some Kings and of course tape. She described each detail, the halo on Jesus' head, the star in the sky, Joseph with his staff, as well as the kings set off into the distance as they were making their way. She then turned my attention to Our Lady.  She said, "Mom, do you see the little tears I made for her?" I answered, "Yes, why is she crying?" Serious, as always, had thought through her creative process, and answered me, "Well, you know, she's happy, but sad.  Only a little sad, Mom, so I only gave her one tear for each eye.  She kinda knows what might happen one day, right?  She kinda knows in her heart, so she's happy-sad." I hugged her and agreed.  "Yes, honey.  You might be right on that.  Thanks for reminding me."

The Greatest Show on Earth

Remember our last adventure at the circus?   Well, this time around was quite a different experience, one which was thoroughly enjoyed by all.  I tried multiple times to get a nice clear picture, but I tell you, with all the sights and sounds and fast paced nature of the show, a good shot was nearly least with our limited camera capabilities. I sat by Serious this time again, and I always delight watching her and her expressions as she watches the fantastic displays before her.  It's almost just as fascinating as the show least for me it is. Regularly throughout the show she'd turn to me and ask, "Is that real or fake?"  The tricks and treats of the show even had me answering a few times, "I'm not sure!"  Either way, it didn't really matter, the skill with which these performers produced these amazing demonstrations, of skill, strength or shear bravery, was something to behold.  Today, before we left for school, T

Livin' Off The Land

Every now and again, I feel a certain kinship to the folk from "Little House on the Prairie".  Over the years I've experimented in all sorts of ways with gardening, canning, cooking, baking, sewing and all those other many little duties of a Stay At Home Mom.  Yesterday and today, I had yet another first.  Having made pumpkin pies for years, I was excited to once again be coming to the pie season as Thanksgiving creeps up on us.  I would always use pumpkin from the can....always.  It makes good pie.  We all enjoy it. However, having bought pie pumpkins this year, I decided to cook them up, puree them like baby food, and make my very first "made from scratch" pumpkin pie.  As I dug out the pulp and seeds, (saving the seeds for roasting), steamed the chunks of pumpkin, removed the skin, then pureed the pumpkin into a creamy yellow mix, I felt a sincere, "waste not, want not," attitude come over me.  Only the stringy pulp and skin was thrown out.  I

Small Successes Friday?

Yes, I know it's not Thursday.  I am late.  Yesterday was a crazy day and today I've got a little one, Entertainer home sick from school, and so any plans I had made today are cancelled anyhoo.  Let's just add one more kink into the works....So here we go, celebrate those small successes because they all add up to one great triumph! 1.)    Made final payment on van .   That's no small success, but definitely worth mentioning! 2.) I reluctantly went and voted , after which felt proud to have done my civic duty. 3.)  Carved pumpkins, cooked yummy pumpkin seeds, made sour cream coffee cake. 4.)  Dressed kiddos up for All Saints:  St. Kateri Tekakwitha, St. George, St. Queen Elisabeth of Hungary, and St. Therese.  Even Babe had his wings for St. Michael the ArchAngel.  Pray for us! Have any to share?  Go here!

Debt and SAHM Contributions

Ugh.  Debt.  Who likes to talk about this stuff?  Certainly not me, and considering the majority of Americans are sitting in some kind of debt, (not to mention our government swimming in it) I guess, we have to talk about it. Ordinarily I'd wait for Small Success Thursdays to mention a success of ours, yet, I thought, nope, this is just too big of a success to wait on.  A few days ago, we made our last van payment.  One more debt out the door.  It was a glorious feeling, and I kind of felt like we should have celebrated in some small way, however, I suppose that great feeling was reward enough, as we mark another day down in the family history book.  One more debt bites the dust....and it was a big one. Doing our due diligence to save our pennies, we had accumulated enough to make this last payment and be finished with it.  The key now, push the money we were using for van payments, to now make payments on our credit card. It feels never-ending.  If it isn't one thing to

Civic Duty

Election Day:  The opportunity to once again let our voices be heard by those who mean to lead us. I know, I know, sometimes, it feels like, it's only one vote, my vote.  Will it make a difference?  Today, I planned to go vote with Babe while the kiddos were at school, and we just didn't get to it.  I managed to finish laundry and make a delicious coffee cake for HH, and I just didn't have the energy to load up and drive over. Then HH came home.  Honestly, I can say, that I really do value him, even when he is kicking me out the door before the polls close.  I actually asked him, "What was the point, as the country seems so unhappy, that my one vote will probably not make the difference." His answer was enough to brave the cold, dark roads to our local polling place and fill in those dark circles.  He said, "That's not the point.  It's our duty." I thought about that word on my drive to vote, "DUTY."  What does that mean anywa

Pumpkin Fun