Monday, August 30, 2010

What We've Been Doing....

Painting!
Painting with a 1 year old is very tricky business.
Thank goodness for my older kiddos.
This was our school room before it was painted.
The dresser too. We use the dresser for "lockers". Each child has a drawer and baby gets the
2 bottom ones.
I finally figured out our old color!
Masking Tape.
That's the color.
Boring. Drab. Not me.
We decided on bright white.
Polar Bear White to be exact.
Clean, fresh, bright
I'll post pictures of the completed room after we get our pictures hung.
It took me a month to do the entire project.
My cabinets were full and in order to be moved needed to be emptied, which means they needed to be cleaned and organized.
We gave an entire 2nd grade Seton curriculum away and a whole garbage bag full of
games, puzzles, etc.....you know things I "might" use someday.
The kiddos and I are very excited to start school next week in our new school room!
This past weekend, we moved around 4 beds, (taking 2 bunk beds apart in order to move them and get them out of each perspective room) in an effort to get our baby bed up from the basement and fit all 4 girls in their room. (which still needs to be done)
Babycakes needs someone to sleep with, so Ballerina Rosie is now sharing a full size bed with her, under the loft that Mary Hannah has now. (which used to be Jedi's)
Jedi now has a normal bed on the floor (not his loft) that used to be one part of the bunk bed that was in the girls room. (he loves it)
We still need to de-clutter and organize his room and somehow move one of the girls dressers into our room so we can get the crib in there.
Little Sweetie Pie has spent her entire year in our bedroom, in a "Pack-N-Play".
She no longer takes naps and is still (yes, still) getting up at least 3-4 times per night to nurse, because, she's in our bedroom and I'm right there.
SO
She has to get out and we will have to do that "cry" thing for who knows how long to get her used to her crib....dreading that already!
We are also planning on painting our playroom, white also. (we liked it so much) It is currently a dark berry color. It's a nice color, but way too dark for that room.
These things on my mind this week:
  • taping, priming and painting the playroom
  • organizing Jedi's room
  • moving the crib into the girls room
  • getting "bumper guards" for the crib
  • being more organized and trying to follow a schedule for school
  • reading through each child's curriculum before next week
  • planning for Mary Hannah's birthday....she wants a "farm" cake and wants to visit here
  • taking off her birthday (Thursday) and just enjoying her and all the kiddos and live in the moment (at least for a day)
  • planning meals and breakfasts (thanks Barbara!)
  • exercising more!

I might be too busy to blog, but will post pictures of our progress...hopefully!

God bless you this week of busy-ness and getting back into a schedule and routine!

Oh, and Jill, John Deere Jill (that's what I call you) if you are reading, CONGRATULATIONS!!!

PLEASE EMAIL ME WITH DETAILS ON DUE DATE, ETC....!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

The Bells


The bells, the beautiful bells.
Our Church uses the bells at the Consecration.
We LOVE it!
The kiddos, no matter what they are doing, even the babies, all look up at this most important time.
This time when something wonderful is happening.
The time when the bread and wine becomes the Body and Blood of our Lord.
Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity.
The bells, the beautiful bells.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

For Christine!

For Christine's love of spiders....these are on our front porch, front bushes and garage!!!
They are huge!!!! I'd say bigger than a quarter!!

2 Movies!

Hachi--is for both the grown ups and the kiddos. It is rated G!!
This movie was very touching and made me cry in the end.
If you are a dog lover, I'd suspect you'd cry throughout the whole movie, but you will also laugh and be amazed at the dedication of this dog.
OK, I was scared to watch this one, just because of the previews. My hubby wanted to watch it...so I watched it as I folded laundry, realizing it was not scary. Hey, it's Leonardo!! He wouldn't be in a horror flick, would he?
It has some creepy, suspenseful moments, but it will keep you guessing til the end.
I love those kind of movies.
This one does not disappoint.
The last line is also a guessing one, that you can read into, like me.
"Is it better for a man to live as a bad man or die as a good man?"
Because of that line, I think Leonardo's character wins in the end.
(in a movie sort of way)
Anyone see this one? What did you think?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Happy 1st Birthday Sweetie Pie!


My baby is one.
It's a special day.
We are so blessed.
We celebrated at the park on Sunday with cousins and friends.
Today we will celebrate with Grandmas with Mass and a picnic!
Baby Love, Baby Love
God bless you my sweet baby!

Today we also start the beginning of 4 birthdays in 2 1/2 weeks!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Hannah Montana Cupcakes

What do you do when all Sam's Club has left for cupcakes is Hannah Montana and you need lots of cupcakes for your youngest child's 1st birthday party?
Buy them and explain to the cashier you are not really into Hannah Montana but the color is perfect and then have your girls take off the Hannah Montana thingies (and lick them) and use the "perfect" cupcakes for her party!
Pictures to come tomorrow.....sniff...sniff....Sweetie Pie's birthday!


I Am the Bread of Life

They sang this song yesterday at the end of Mass and I teared up during the whole thing, closing my eyes during the "and I will ra----ise you up" part. Beautiful. Just beautiful. No matter how crazy our lives are, God will raise us up during every Mass!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Breakfast and Kabob Questions

2 weeks ago, in an effort on my part to be more organized, I planned out breakfasts and lunches. (I already do try to plan out suppers)
Usually, what we do is whenever everyone is up, I (nag) tell the kiddos to pick something and give them choices, like cereal, granola bars, yogurt, cinnamon toast, oatmeal, frozen waffles...you know, anything easy.
I planned "Muffin Monday" and
"French Toast Friday". In between, we had biscuits and eggs (any style), pancakes, and one easy anything day. Oh, and eggs and bacon or sausage on Saturdays/Sundays for daddy.
I really liked knowing what we were going to have, and the kiddos liked the variety. I loved eating at the same time, no nagging to "pick something" and well, I just really liked it.
My challenge is I have a baby who gets up several times a night still. (yes, I said several and yes, she's almost one) So, this mama is very tired in the morning and as hard as I try and pray, I just can't get up at 6 or even 7 every day. I sleep and wake and doze off til 8.
(and could still use a nap)
So, breakfast ends up being around 9 or later.
What do you do?
It seems I am always struggling with schedule and order.
(yes, I have the book A Mothers Rule of Life and the MOTH planner)
With school starting in just a little over 2 weeks, I'm filled with "how am I going to do it?"

How the heck do you make kabobs?

I tried the other night and although my hubby liked his steak ones (with hot sauce), the chicken ones for me and the kiddos were awful. Awful. No flavor, in the meat or the veggies, I got out the peanut butter and jelly and said no one had to eat them.
Any advice?

Thank you so very much!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Special Visitors!

Last Friday, my good friend Bonnie came to visit. Now, Bonnie and I met many years ago, like 15 years ago at a retreat and hit it off right away. Back then, every retreat we did together, people would ask if we were sisters. I think we'd both say "Sisters in Christ!"
Well, her daughter, you all might recognize as "The Clay Rosary Girl", but I know her as Sarah. She's been making those beautiful clay rosaries since she was a young teen.
It was such an honor to have her and her children in my home. (I feel so old) She will soon be homeschooling her oldest for preschool and came to get (hopefully) some ideas about homeschooling. (I hope I didn't scare her)

I wish we would have had more time. I wanted equal amounts of time with each of them. It was so nice to see them both.
Bonnie and her husband Jim, read this beautiful prayer at our wedding almost 14 years ago:
Beloved Bride:
Please take your groom's hands in yours:
These are the hands, young and strong and vibrant with love, that held yours today at your Wedding Mass as he promised to love you all the days of his life.
These are the hands that, God willing, you will place with expectant joy beneath your heart one day until he, too, feels his child stir within your womb. These are the hands that look so large and clumsy now, yet will be so gentle when he holds your baby for the first time.
These are the hands that will work long hours to earn money for you and your family. These are the hands that will get nicked and bruised from fixing things around the house to make you more comfortable.
These are the hands that will caress your body throughout the years, to make the passion of love come alive in you.
These are the hands that will countless times wipe away tears from your eyes, tears of sorrow and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will comfort you in illness and hold you when fear or grief racks your mind.
These are the hands that will tenderly lift your chin and brush your cheek, as they raise your face to look into his eyes, eyes that will be filled completely with his overwhelming love and desire for you.
Beloved Groom:
Please take your bride's hands in yours:
These are the hands that hold yours today as she gave you her pledge to love you and accepted your ring at your Wedding Mass.
These are the hands that are smooth and young and carefree now, but will become lined and rougher in the years ahead, from thousands of dishes washed, tons of laundry cleaned, and hundreds of meals prepared.
These are the hands that God willing, will hold you in joy and excitement, each time she says you are to have another child, that together you have created new life. These are the hands that will hold each child in tender love, soothing them through illness, disciplining them, diapering them, baking for them, praying for them, and wringing themselves in worry when trouble comes.
Perhaps these are the hands that will comfort you when you are told you cannot have a child and will convince you that together you can create new life in other ways.
These are the hands that through the years will caress your body in the passion of love. These are the hands that will tenderly hold your face and wipe tears away from your eyes in wonder and awe that you would cry for her.
Beloved Newly Weds:
These are the hands of the Sacrament of Matrimony. These four hands are your armor and shield against the evils of the world. These four hands are part of God's Plan for renewing His Church. These hands can reach out to the lonely and discouraged, bring hope to the destitute in mind and body, heal the abused and hurting children of the world, and teach your friends the wonders of married love. These hands are the hope of a troubled humanity. For these are the hands that can change the world.
God bless you today and each day of your married life.
(This our actual prayer, I had to get out of our wedding book. I tried to look online and only found the more liberal versions with no mention of washing dishes.)

Our Baby Ape Crawl

video

None of our kiddos have crawled like this before, it's hilarious to watch!

(sorry about my obnoxious voice)

She doesn't like to put her knees on the floor!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Movie Review and Weight Update

Yesterday was the feast of the Assumption of Mary.
One of my favorite days of the year.
This year with Tom making it with me, it was, I don't know, different.
In a nice, different way.
It got us in the habit of praying together every night.
I usually do my prayers right away in the morning, knowing that I will be too tired to do it in the evening and I don't want to miss any days.
This year, I waited for him and we prayed every evening usually while the kiddos were in bed, but not always. There were lots of interruptions which is the season of our life right now.
With 5 small children (Jedi is 10 now, but that's small, right?) anyway, with 5 small children, I feel like I've become ADHD or something. I have a hard time concentrating or really praying, at least the way I want to. I'm visual. I want to take it all in and feel it.
I am so very thankful for this busy time in my life, I know in the not so distant future there will be time for silent retreats.
It's not about what I get out of it.
It's about Jesus and what I give Him.
I offer my life and all it's failings and imperfections.
He can make them beautiful when I don't feel anything.
Just this morning, Mary Hannah came into bed with me and started talking about her birthday (she's on the big countdown) which is in 16 days. She kiddingly said "I'm going to be six----teen in sixteen days, get it mom?" I said, with a pain in my heart, "You'll be 16 for real, much sooner than I'd like. Come here my sweet 16-year old!" (followed by tickling kisses on her neck)
Some day, she won't come into my bed and snuggle.
Onto movie reviews!
Win a Date With Tad Hamilton.
Great movie!
It's a few years old and I'd never heard of it, until Sarah told me about it.
"Guard your carnal treasure!!"
I laughed out loud when I heard that part.
I've never even heard of it called that before. I like it. (I hope it's not a bad word)
Kind of a girly movie, but I like those kind.
My husband calls them "Jamie movies" and I'm pretty sure he'd like me to tell you that he did NOT watch this with me.
Very cute movie.
Update anyone?
I started on a Thursday and so it's been a week and a half. My weigh in days are Mondays.
Today is a good Monday.
I lost 3 pounds total!!
It's amazing to eat more and actually lose.
Most days I have a hard time filling my points. I feel so guilty having a whole cup of frozen yogurt at bedtime. (5 points)
Wish I'd have done this sooner.
I still struggle with finding the time to exercise (as I sit here on my big butt in my exercise clothes, I want it all, blog time & exercise time)
I'm trying to not feel guilty and just do it when I can.
My kids are so sweet about it.
Jedi, this morning said "why are you trying to lose weight mom?" "You don't need to."
I explain to him,
I want to feel good about myself, I want to lose weight to be healthy. I also explained that Weight Watchers is not really a diet as much as just being accountable to the amount you are eating. I'm just really counting that's all.
I like that Weight Watchers is a life plan, not a diet.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Minnesota

Minnesota has 90,000 miles of shoreline. That's more than California, Florida and Hawaii combined.
Signs You're From Minnesota
The weather is usually 80% of your conversation.
When you say "down south" you're referring to Iowa.
Snow tires come standard on your car.
You assume when you say "The Cities" people know where you're talking about.
(anywhere near the Twin Cities, Minneapolis & St Paul & any city within 30 miles of there)
Where most towns have equal number of bars and churches.
People from other states love to hear you say words with "o"s in them.
You have probably gone trick or treating in 3 feet of snow.
You've not only walked across a lake, you've driven across one.
You get mad at people who think Fargo is in Minnesota.

(photos taken in Bemidji, MN)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Vacation Days 5, 6, & 7

Daddy took the kiddos fishing at different times and Mary Hannah came back and said,
"I caught a grayfish, but I thought it was a lobster!"
(she caught a tiny crayfish)
Babycakes came back and said,
"When I was shishin' there were leap pads and catweeds and I caught a poach!"
(perch)
after asking daddy "Can I roll it in now?"
(Translation: Can I reel it in now?)
Catweeds
Leap pads
We were off to the mighty Mississippi headwaters next! At Itasca State Park.
This was my favorite day!
It's so amazing that this mighty river flows out of this tiny spot.
You have to believe in God if you see this place.
My pictures just do not show the place justice.
On the right side of the rocks, there is the start of the Mississippi, and on
the left side is Lake Itasca! (calm as can be)
Did we walk across the Mississippi River?
Ya, you betcha!
(I don't really talk like that, but I do know people who do)
Sweetie Pie's feet kept sinking in the sand, she did not care for that.


So amazing to see how small the river is here, where we live, the Mississippi is flowing pretty fast and is way too deep and wide to walk across.

Back at the cabin, there were plenty of campfires and smores!
My trick to easy smores, fudge striped cookies!
One t-shirt we could not resist because it sums up Babycake's personality.
"Sometimes I'm a little deer"
"Sometimes I'm a little bear"
"Sometimes I'm a little stinker"
"But all the time somebody loves me"
Yes, Babycakes, lots of people love you!
We also went to Lake Bemidji, right in town.
This is Mary Hannah right before she fell in. (and cried all the way home to the cabin)
She wouldn't even let me get a picture of her all wet.
It was really quite cute and kind of funny.
With 5 kiddos wading in water and rocks, someone was bound to fall in, right?
It was a great vacation and we now have such fun memories!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Total Consecration

This year, my 15th year doing Total Consecration, my husband has joined me.
He did it twice in the first couple years of our marriage, so this is his 3rd time (we've been married 13 years)
It's been so nice praying it with another person, especially him! I've really enjoyed it and look so forward to it each night.
Each year, the first part is 12 preliminary days, followed by 3 weeks of prayers and readings.
In the 3rd week of prayers, it all comes together and "clicks".
It's always been that way for me anyway.
I finally go "ah, yes, this is the reason I do it" It all makes sense now"
An "aha" moment.
I want to share today the 27th day and what St Louis de Montfort explains to us.
It puts it all together and I think explains my faith:
Twenty-seventh Day
True Devotion: Nos. 61-62
Christ our Last End
Jesus Christ our Savior, true God and true Man, ought to be the last end of all our devotions, else
they are false and delusive. Jesus Christ is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, of all things. We labor not, as the Apostle says, except to render every man perfect in Jesus Christ; because it is in Him alone that the whole plenitude of the Divinity dwells together with all the other plenitudes of graces, virtues and perfections. It is in Him alone that we have been blessed with all spiritual benediction; and He is our only Master, Who has to teach us; our only Lord on Whom we ought to depend; our only Head to Whom we must be united; our only Model to Whom we should conform ourselves; our only Physician Who can heal us, our only Shepherd Who can feed us; our only Way Who can lead us; our only Truth Whom we must believe; our only Life Who can animate us; and our only All in all things Who can satisfy us. There has been no other name given under heaven, except the name of Jesus, by which we can be saved. God has laid no other foundation of our salvation, our perfection or our glory, than Jesus Christ. Every building which is not built on that firm rock is founded upon the moving sand, and sooner or later infallibly will fall.
By Jesus Christ, with Jesus Christ, in Jesus Christ, we can do all things; we can render all honor and glory to the Father in the unity of the Holy Ghost; we can become perfect ourselves, and be to our neighbor a good odor of eternal life.
If, then, we establish solid devotion to our Blessed Lady, it is only to establish more perfectly devotion to Jesus Christ, and to provide an easy and secure means for finding Jesus Christ. Devotion to our Lady is necessary for us, as I have already shown, and will show still further hereafter, as a means of finding Jesus Christ perfectly, of loving Him tenderly, of serving Him faithfully.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Our Vacation-Days 3 and 4

I actually did these pictures out of order....this is actually the 4th day.
Rain, rain, rain all day.
Which was kind of nice, it gave us a chance to play games in the cabin!
Uno Attack anyone? How about Apples to Apples Junior?
Ok....
How about a movie? The office at the resort had movies to rent, so we rented this one.
I loved it!
I thought it was great.
I really liked the special effects, which they explain in the "extras" on the DVD

"Enough of this inside stuff, let's go into town!"


(the blurry smudge will be in quite a few pictures, until I figure out it's there, sorry, bear with me)
Into town to the "Information Center" only to find out they were closing.



I'm not sure what Jedi is doing.
What are you doing?
"I'm touching his butt"
Ok, I guess that's a once in a lifetime chance.
Uh, if that's what you call it.....
Here we are at day 3 (finally, huh?)
Off to Paul Bunyan's Animal Land.
And you thought everything was big in Texas.
Uh-uh, everything is big in Northern Minnesota.
Behind these brightly, neatly painted buildings is an animal land waiting for us to explore.


You thought I was kidding, didn't you?
Our favorite animal there, the Kangaroo. A real, live Kangaroo.
He's beautiful, isn't he?
It was just so amazing to see how God created such a unique animal.
There was food all over you could buy and feed the animals with. This Kangaroo was so friendly and got so close to Babycakes!
Sweetie Pie was patiently waiting her turn.
The more dangerous animals you could feed through these cool pipe thingys.
Raccoons, Lemurs, Porcupines, Badgers, monkeys, bears.
Oh, and Lions. Or a Lion.
We couldn't feed him.
This is the closest you will probably ever get to a real Lion kiddos!
(There's that darn smudge again)
We could walk into the field with all the deer they had.
It was really beautiful.
They had a peacock walking around too, but I didn't get a great picture of that one....
"Hey, this big guy is as tall as me"
"Hi Mr orange guy"
"So where are you from? Is, that, uh, your family over there?"
We actually dared daddy to get that close to the camel, the rest of us were scared.
I heard they spit.
I did not want to be spit on.
He's so ugly
and yet
He's so cute
at the same time.

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