Thursday, March 27, 2008

Plaid Shawl

I've been walking around in it, so you may have seen that I have it finished. I told you when I started, so you can see how it turned out. I'm pretty happy with the results, considering I just learned to knit last winter. Dave may think I look silly, but someone else's opinion rarely keeps me from wearing what I want. I LIKE IT!
I made a Scottish tam to match...but it REALLY DID look ridiculous. Dave's just relieved that I agreed with him about that. Ds#4 looks cute in the tam, though.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Blogger slowdown

It's not just a blogger slowdown -- (I'm a blogger and I've slowed way down in how often I post), it's a whole life slowdown. Last week the baby had a relapse of his Influenza -- I've heard that if you have the least cold symptom left, you can get hit again with fever and sever cold symptoms. Well, he did. So, for the last 2 weeks he's been congested, struggling to swallow at times, etc. (Which means I'm getting less sleep and also contributes to not spending time on the computer). This week he's been particularly fussy. As of Easter morning I've added milk drinking back into my diet (and been LOVING it!). I guess I'll cut it out and see if that helps him calm down any. It's so hard to tell whether it's his teeth, or boredom as he becomes more aware of his surroundings, or my diet.... I honestly thought with my 5th baby I'd be better at this. I'm just less stressed about my own inadequacies, but it hasn't made them better.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Happy Easter!!

Just as we entered into Lent for weeks and weeks, so we celebrate Easter! I LOVE that the party is just beginning on Easter morning and we celebrate the resurection for day after day - 5 weeks!! It's such a joy to live with the Risen Christ!
Here's a bit of our Easter day last Sunday.

This is my mom's husband with the baby. Since he doesn't have any children of his own, my kids are as close as it comes to grandkids.

Just two bald guys hanging out together at Easter!
Then there's the Easter egg hunt at Dave's mom's house. All the grandkids (a few of my kids are in the picture) gather in the "grandchildren's room" to wait for the word 'GO!'

And grandma reads the rules of the hunt (she seperated the kids into rooms of the house this year since it was so wet outsite). She also wanted to remind everyone to "have fun".

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Sacred Triduum

Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday

I am unprepared.
I am unprepared to have Christ wash my dirty feet and feed me with Himself.
I am unprepared to have my children see my inadequacies in bringing them to Him.
I am unprepared to watch Him suffer for me.
I am unprepared to have my children's eyes see the violence done to their beloved.
I am unprepared to be without Him while I grieve when He is dead in the tomb.
I am unprepared to face the children's questions, I have so few answers.

Unprepared as I am, He is asking me to go walk with Him.
Inadequate as I am, it is time to follow Him -- even to Golgotha.
Greived as I am for myself, my children and the world, He is our only answer.

As we enter into the Sacred Triduum
as we enter into the pain of His Passion
unlike the disciples, I know the end of the story.

The cross is meaningless pain without Resurection.
Resurection is a fairy story without the violence of the cross.
This Sacred Triduum we've been given brings together everything I need,
to make me who I am to become...
I am His.

Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday

I think we'll ditch formal school for the rest of this Holy Week.
Holy Thursday
This morning we'll clean the house so we can move on to more important things.
I've been having the kids make clothes pin apostles and we'll finish those (God willing). (another pic)
After lunch I'll have the kids make an Easter Triptych. I think we'll try folding and sealing them with glue.
We'll also work on making our own Stations of the Cross. All my efforts at crafts this Lent have been in vain. Babies really get in the way of spending time on such things. We'll see how much we can do today.
I may go to Holy Thursday Mass, either by myself or with kids who want to go. Dave will stay home with the baby and non-participating kids.

Good Friday
Dave is home that day. In the morning we'll finish up the Stations of the Cross (or start them as the case may be). I like the idea of blowing out candles with each station so the room is dark by the time you get to Jesus' death. I think the boys in particular will like doing it that way.
Dave will take various children to Good Friday service. I'll stay home with the baby and maybe some kids. I'm hoping to pray this Stations of the Cross sometime this Triduum. It sounds silly, even to my own ears, that I have doubts about even getting such a fundamental prayer accomplished, but recent history has let me know that my plans barely factor in to how our hours will be spent. I love the idea of silence during the hours of 12-3 on Good Friday, but I can't even get the kids to keep things down to a low roar while the baby is obviously asleep -- I'm not sure how I'd get silence, or even whispers accomplished.

I may have the boys use the apostle dolls we finished above to act out the crucifixion.

Holy Saturday
If we have time and Dave doesn't have another agenda, I'd like to make a paper mache tomb from a tissue box. Then we'll prepare our clothes and ourselves for the coming CELEBRATION!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Homemade crafting materials

This was just too much cool crafty stuff to pass on.
This site has homemade...almost everything for crafts - glue, paper, puffy paint, wax seals...

Friday, March 14, 2008

Americans Deployed Overseas

My friend Kim just sent me pictures (of which she's famous for taking fabulous ones) of her family saying good-bye to her husband at the airport as he's deployed. They were so beautiful and touching and I cried and cried...She's got a new blog with pictures. They're trying to raise money for a fantastic Welcome Home for their soldiers - Warriorsathomefw.blogspot.com. The events look really fun!! I'm going to try and make it to some!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

4 month old baby

Several people have commented that they come to my blog to see pics of my baby. Here you go...

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Embarassing things kids do...

Ds#4 took a picture of Dave's rear end while he was leaning over the fireplace fixing something. Dave made me promise I wouldn't post it on my blog. Here is the next picture of Dave taking the camera away from Ds#4. This is the kind of lofty events that happen at our house.

Quote of the Day

My good friend Julie told me
"You seem to be enjoying this baby so much."

I would have to agree. I had always hoped without the stresses of parenthood, I'd have the grace to enjoy -- get a tremendous, sunshining joy, from my grandchildren. The stresses of being a good parent are heavy on me, such that I tend to wear the stress around like chain mail. Things really are a little lighter with this baby. I don't love him more, I'm just older and open to the graces that God has for me. I'm having more fun this time.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

First Food - Icecream

Dave just couldn't help himself. Each of the other children's first food was always icecream. It's a family tradition. I've been mulling over starting the baby on solids. The recommendation now is not until 6mo. old, but when Dd#1 was a baby, they said 4mo. Dd#1 wasn't interested until she was 10mo. old and Ds#4 would have been thrilled at 4 mo. So, it really depends on the baby. I was not going to give this baby icecream, however. This is the kid that has kept me from milk for the last 6 weeks! He even broke out when I tried to sneak and drink reconstituted powdered milk! But...Dave is his dad, so he gets to do things I'd rather he not. The baby survived (and of course LOVED chocolate icecream -- at least it was Breyers!)

Classical Homeschooling

I have a friend (Hi, Kerri!) who asks me at least once a year to explain what my understanding of the "Classical" method of homeschooling is. I've written posts about it and we've talked on the phone.

This "Lost Tools" Chart from Logos school (click on "PDF Sample") gives one of the best synopsis I've seen for the stages of children and what this means for teaching them.

Another corollary to the Classical Method is the thread that weaves through the subjects in your school to tie everything together. Some classical schools are Latin based. Some schools are literature or science based.

Our school is history focused, so when we study the ancients in history, we study biology for the year (because that's what they would have studiied). So our science is driven by our history study. We also do much of our writing, vocabulary, dictionary skills, literature & religion studies to go alongside what we're studiing in history. Our math & grammar are about the only subjects we study independent of history. This can be done with whatever thread is important to your school.

Any questions???

Monday, March 03, 2008

Quote of the Day


Mama? How did you learn to speak dog language and baby language?
I had to have him repeat the question. It took me a few minutes to figure out why he thought I could speak dog. It's because I'll ask him , "Have you fed the dog, like I asked?" He'll have to say, "No, how did you know?" The dog will have been following me around for the previous 10 minutes and just sitting looking at me when I stop moving, "Because Maggie told me she's hungry."

So...apparently I speak dog and baby! Wow! I'm an impressive mom!

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Seeds & Fertilizer

I took Dd#2 to get her hair cut this morning while I got mine cut. We stopped and got a hot chocolate, coffee, and split a sweet roll. I thought this would be a lovely mother-daughter time for us. Dd#2 didn't like the hair cut she got and had to clean her room when we got home (which happens every Saturday) and she threw a royal temper tantrum. She was screaming about how mad she was at me : mad that I let her get her hair cut, mad that she hadn't gotten to see her neighbor friend for the 2 weeks she's been sick, mad that her room was so messy. I laughed at her because I didn't think any of that was really my fault and I thought she was being silly to cry and scream about any one of those silly things. Then she was really mad at me for laughing.

Later, as I was talking to my good friend, Julie, and telling her how much I'd wanted to have a sweet morning with my sweet (or not so sweet at the moment) little girl, she told me that the memories I want to give Dd#2 really are planting seeds of sweet memories. Someday, she'll cherish these moments and feel loved. The rest of her behavior is just fertilizer for the seeds. I sure hope so -- it smelled like fertilizer to the sweet morning I had planned.