Last Day

It’s Easter and spring time- our favorite time of year! We have been loving life over here… 

Except for one thing.

Some of our best friends are moving.

I have been in denial about it up until now. But, today, the moving van is being loaded and the kids are here for one last playdate. I can’t deny it anymore. They are really moving and that has me feeling pretty sad in the midst of the Easter joy.

Will you say some prayers for us and our sweet kids? They have such dear friendships with each other and we are really going to miss them.

Poems and Tea

wp-1491541501647.jpg1. We had our first Poetry Teatime! It was just as delightful as Julie said it would be.

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2. My little bakers made these chocolate chip cookies. They were delicious, but then again, I have never met a homemade chocolate chip cookie that wasn’t good.

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3. Allie asked me what we could do to make the table beautiful. When I said that I wasn’t sure, her eyes lit up and she assured me that she had an idea. She made these paper flowers while the cookies were in the oven. I can’t even tell you how happy I am that she delights in such little things.

4. We read from A.A. Milne’s Now We are Six. One poem that we read, entitled “Binker” is about an imaginary friend. I didn’t think that my children quite understood it at the time but suddenly there have been several invisible playmates in our house this week.

5. Another poem that we read I selected because it reminds me of our 4 year old. It sums him up pretty well.

 

Busy

I think I am a Muffin Man. I haven’t got a bell,
I haven’t got the muffin things that muffin people sell.

Perhaps I am a Postman. No, I think I am a Tram.
I’m feeling rather funny and I don’t know what I am —

BUT

Round about
And round about
And round about I go —
All round the table,
The table in the nursery —

Round about
And round about
And round about I go

I think I am a Traveller escaping from a Bear;

I think I am an Elephant,
Behind another Elephant,
Behind another Elephant who isn’t really there. . . .

SO

Round about
And round about
And round about and round about
And round about
And round about

I go.

I think I am a Ticket Man who’s selling tickets-please,

I think I am a Doctor who is visiting a Sneeze;

Perhaps I’m just a Nanny who is walking with a pram

I’m feeling rather funny and I don’t know what I am —

BUT

Round about
And round about
And round about I go —
All round the table,
The table in the nursery —
And round about
And round about I go.

I think I am a Puppy, so I’m hanging out my tongue;

I think I am a Camel who
Is looking for a Camel who
Is looking for a Camel who is looking for its Young. . . .

SO

Round about
And round about
And round about and round about
And round about
And round about

I go.

6. Funny enough, my child thought it was silly that the boy in the poem did not know what he was.  (My son is usually a lion. Unless he is a cheetah. Or a firefighter or a football player or…)

7.  I am linking up today with the Poetry Friday Round Up and Seven Quick Takes. Head over to check out more!

Updated 4/8 to Add: I can’t seem to add my post to the blog link-ups! I will try to get it working soon but head over there to check out other people’s posts anyway! :)

Updated 4/9 to Add: I got the link up fixed!

Late Night Baking

We are heading to the park tomorrow to picnic and play with friends after our morning lessons. I don’t actually have enough bread in the house to make sandwiches, the kids are in bed and Alex isn’t here, so I decided to bake something. This recipe is what I came up with and I sure hope it tastes as good as it smells baking.

I should probably wait until I have pictures and results to post this but then I will probably forget and never post. So here goes! Try this and we can decide together what needs to be changed. :)

Maple Banana Almond Bread

3 very ripe bananas

1/2 cup of applesauce

2 eggs, beaten

3/4 cup of sugar

1/4 cup of 100% maple syrup

vanilla (to be honest, I didn’t measure it. I just splashed some in)

2 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour, spooned into the measuring cup

1/2 cup almond meal/flour

2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp (plus a pinch) of salt

 Yields 2 loaves 

I just did this all in one bowl because I hate dishes. Combine bananas, eggs, sugar, maple syrup, applesauce, and vanilla first. I just used a fork but, of course, a mixer would be handy here. Then sprinkle the dry ingredients over the top and mix just enough to be sure all the of the ingredients are combined well. I baked in 2 loaf pans at 350 for about 40 minutes. I can’t wait to see how this turns out!

 NB: The bread was really good but a little sweet for my taste. I would definitely reduce the sugar by 1/4 cup  next time.

Well… Hello there!

Here I am, again. I have wanted to write more for such a long time but never really know how to get started. So I think I will just say hi and then carry on. Okay?

Okay.

Oh wait. First, I meant to say that I saw something on a blog recently and I totally want to steal it as a disclaimer on all of my posts too. It’s just this:

“I’m glad you’re here. This post probably contains run-on sentences, sentence fragments, affiliate links, and unnecessary ellipses.  If none of that bothers you, let’s be friends.” 

(That is from Dwija at House Unseen.)

I thought that was pretty perfect for this space too. (Except I don’t currently have any affiliate links.) There are many times when I want to write but don’t because I’m afraid that I will write the way I talk… and, well, that would make my freshman English teacher very sad.(I’m so sorry, Ms. Adkins!)

But, I want to write and I am not going to improve by just not writing, am I? Plus, I’m a girl with things to say and a desire to share with others. Sometimes deep thoughts, oftentimes not. I like to talk about food, books, my family, my Catholic faith, homeschooling, and pretty much any PG topics. Would you like to stick around for that? I hope so.

Let’s do this.

Winter Happiness

It is February! I know it is common for folks to be done with winter by now and, for the last couple of years, I would have been one of them. But this winter has been different for me in many ways and I am counting up every little thing as a consolation.

We had two birthdays in our family last week (including mine!) which we celebrate as holidays. We have very simple celebrations but the day is full of special time together as a family – no work, no school, just enjoying each other and honoring the birthday girl/boy. So, I always look forward to the last week of January and this year was one of my best birthdays in many years. I was treated to breakfast in bed and a massage in the afternoon. We enjoyed a trip to the local botanic gardens and went out for a birthday dinner. Alex and the kids baked me a cake and it was delicious. I took a walk with a couple of the kids and enjoyed the lovely sunny day.

I spent Saturday visiting friends who live a few hours away. We had such a wonderful time talking over morning coffee that we ended up also having lunch together. It was a total luxury for me to have so much time together and I enjoyed every minute.

Sunday was such a glorious day. We spent most of the afternoon soaking up sunshine and fresh air. The kids rode their trikes and scooters all over the driveway while I played with the baby and kept him from running out to the street.

And this morning? I woke up early for prayer and enjoyed the stillness of the house. My children stayed up too late last night and are – amazingly- sleeping in this morning. I drank my coffee while it was hot. I listened to the winter birds singing outside. It was just a lovely time.

It is supposed to snow some more tomorrow but I don’t even mind. I feel filled up with goodness and perfectly ready to embrace some more winter weather.

I count this all as grace.

 

 

 

Merry Christmas!

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We had a really good Advent and Christmas has been lovely.

Our children are at such fun ages for Christmas time. Allie had the excitement and anticipation going strong all of Advent. She was just like me as a little girl. She loves the rituals and family traditions and relishes in sharing them with the boys. It was the baby’s second Christmas but this year he is toddling all around and getting into the Christmas ornaments. It is all new for him!  Joshua and John Paul have really enjoyed the celebration as well. Every day, John Paul asks if it is still Christmas and he is so happy when the answer is yes. (Did you know that it’s still Christmas until Sunday?!) (I learned that when Allie was three and I told her that Christmas on the Ephiphany and then we went to Mass where our dear priest showed me up. I was a little embarrassed.)

Anyway, I hope you have all enjoyed this Christmas time and new year. I’m hoping to get back here soon to share with you a 2015 year in review and some more bits and pieces of our days. Until then, happy new year!

 

 

 

Our Little Calendar Time

I meant to show this to you a few days ago with the Advent wreath but it slipped my mind. We have been doing a little “calendar time” with the kids for a few years now.

(I think that makes it sound so much more involved than it really is, but that’s what we call it, so there you go.)

We used to have this just pinned on the wall next to a big classroom calendar but I was kind of over the calendar itself. When we moved over the summer, I decided it was a good time to change our set-up a bit. It wasn’t exactly on the top of my priority list, though, and I couldn’t decide how I wanted to do it. My son Joshua started asking about it a few weeks ago, so I promised him that I would get it together in time for Advent.

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I still hadn’t really figured out what I wanted to do when suddenly it was the Saturday evening before Advent. (Typical last-minute me.)*

*Side note: Speaking of last minute crafting… The first Lent we did this, I thought I had made the Lenten sign ahead of time. But when I went to look for it on Ash Wednesday, it was nowhere to be found. (I’m pretty sure now that I never did really make it. I just thought about making it.) So I loaded up the kids and went to Hobby Lobby and made it later that afternoon. The kids don’t remember that it was late. They just remember that we did it!

Anyway, I kept going back and forth between a few different ideas when I realized that I needed to just do SOMETHING and I could always change it later. It doesn’t have to be perfect.

I rummaged through my craft supplies and found some stick-on magnets that I had saved from a (failed) project a few years ago. I had just enough to attach these guys to the side of the refrigerator. This is directly across from our dining table so my people can see it clearly during meals and otherwise running amok. It’s a high traffic area of the house. :) We usually do calendar at breakfast time but sometimes it happens later in the day if we are too busy or forget in the morning.

Here’s what we do:

  • We name what liturgical season it is.
  • We change the liturgical color the priest is wearing on major feast days and solemnities (if I remember and/or we have been to Mass so the kids happen to know that the priest was wearing a different color.) My children like to know if it’s a feast day because those are the days when we get treats. :)
  • We talk about why the color is what it is. For example, purple is for times of preparation, red calls to mind the Blood of Christ, etc.
  • We tell a little bit about the saint of the day and say a brief morning offering.
  • When we had the big classroom calendar up, we also counted up to the current date and pointed out any special days coming up (birthdays, anniversaries, trips we were going on, etc). I still don’t have a plan for doing that again in the future, despite Joshua’s insistence.

I used this printable craft to make the priest activity. When I got it, I think it was just a free printable. I think you might have to sign up for email updates now or something. We use it every day, though, so it would be worth it to me.

Anyway, this very simple activity has helped our children to learn the liturgical seasons and to remember the saints in our daily lives. I just wanted to share it with you!