Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Just popping in to say hi. I'm sick with a stomach bug. YUCK! THe past few days, I've been a busy bee cleaning house for company that came today. Luckily, I didn't get sick until they left. I'm not sure if it was the food or if I had this bug coming on anyway. Whatever, it's still the same result - YUCK!

I hope I can be back to visiting you all soon! I think I'll have a lot of catching up to do!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Good Afternoon, one and all! I hope you had a nice Christmas, spent with family and friends.

I had a good one. Christmas Eve was spent doing last minute shopping and wrapping, a ritual with me. Throughout the day, I prepared food items for our Christmas Eve dinner. I cooked a turkey and made some sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, and rounded it out with some green beans and corn. It turned out well.

Christmas morning, we opened presents, then went to Mass. After that, we went to my mom's and had a Christmas celebration with the extended family. It was a lot of fun. It's always great to see my sister and her family. We don't see them as often as we should. My brother and SIL were missing this year as they had company visiting from Canada.

We then went visiting with my mother-in-law at the residential home that she lives in.

The rest of the night was spent playing all the games that the kids got as presents. That was a lot of fun until the kids started getting tired and arguments broke out about who was winning and losing, who was not playing the right way, and who didn't get a chance to play with THEIR game. !! SIGH!! We all called it a night after that.

Today, I have the turkey carcass simmering on the stove to make broth for turkey noodle soup. It smells so good in here. Ryan might have a different opinion about that.
He already asked me if he has to spend the day in his room as he doesn't like the smell! Gee, I thought it was a heavenly smell, to have some broth simmering. Makes the house seem so warm and comfy! My homemaker self is just so proud!

Kathryn and Steve are out for some one on one time. They are hitting the stores to find great deals on things. Ryan and Emily are playing with their new toys and I need to take the clothes out of the washer and into the dryer. I haven't done laundry in days, so I have a huge pile to work on.

Tonight we will probably head out to see Christmas lights before people start taking them down.

Have a nice day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

Christmas greetings to all of you. May you all be blessed abundantly!

josh groban holy night

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


It's been so cold here. We're in between storms, so right now its sunny. I've enjoyed being snug and warm in the house, drinking my coffee. I'm not much of a coffee drinker, but I am in the winter, especially when the Christmas creamers come out!

I still have a little bit of shopping left to do, which happens every year. As much as I get an early start, I procrastinate till the very end. I must subconsciously get a thrill out of the rushing around, I don't know!

I've been wrapping as I go along, so that part won't be so bad. I usually wrap while listening to Christmas music or watching Christmas movies. This year, Kathryn wants to do more of the wrapping, so I'll gladly accept her help.

Esther, from A Catholic Mom in Hawaii, recently posted this video of Band Aid singing Do They Know it's Christmas Time. It brought back so many memories. I'm a big fan of 80's music and it was something to see some of these singers back at the height of their popularity.

Now I'm off to fix some lunch. We're having Grilled Cheese sandwiches today. Simple. Hope you're all enjoying the Christmas season. We're almost to the big day!

O Emmanuel - December 23

O Emmanuel ( God-With-Us), our King and Lawgiver, the Desire of all nations and their Savior: come and save us, O Lord our God!

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel;
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Monday, December 22, 2008

O Rex Gentium - December 22

O Rex Gentium (King of Nations), and their Desired, the Cornerstone who make all one; Come and save our race, whom you formed out of clay.

O come, desire of nations, bind
In one the hearts of all mankind.
Bid every sad division cease
And be thyself our Prince of Peace.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

O Oriens - December 21

O Oriens (Dayspring), brightness of eternal Light and Sun of Justice: come and enlighten those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death.

O come, O Day-spring, come and cheer

Our spirits by thine advent here;

Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,

And death's dark shadows put to flight.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

O Clavis David - December 20

O Clavis David (Key of David), and scepter of the house of Israel: you open and no one shuts; you shut and no one opens. Come and lead forth from his prison the captive sitting in darkness and in the shadow of death.

O come, O Key of David, come,

And open wide our heavenly home;

Make safe the way that leads on high,

And close the path to misery.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Friday, December 19, 2008

O Radix Jesse - December 19

O Radix Jesse (Root of Jesse), who stood as a sign for the people, before you kings shall remain silent, and to you the Gentiles shall make supplication: come to deliver us, and delay not.

O come, O Rod of Jesse, free

Thine own from Satan's tyranny;

From depths of hell thy people save,

And give them victory o'er the grave.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel

Shall come to thee, O Israel!

You can read a reflection from FR. Z. here.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

It's Cold!!!

Yes, it's super cold out here in ever sunny California. We're not used to the temperature dropping to the 40's. I'm sitting here with my scarf wrapped around my neck and if I didn't have to type on this keyboard, I'd have my mittens on!

I was finally able to upload some pictures so I'll share a few. There were approximately 160 pictures just waiting to be uploaded. Let's see what we have here.

This was the view from my backyard during the terrible fires in November. The sky was pretty black for awhile, but because of the Santa Ana Winds, all the smoke blew to the west and we were left clear.

Ryan likes taking self-portraits with my camera. I got caught in this one. :)

Sweet sisters!

Credit for this picture belongs to the mother of Ryan's friend. She takes great pictures.

The kids put on a fashion show for Steve and I. They had a great time pretending to walk down a runway and give us their cutest and silliest poses.

This was the picture we ended up using for our Christmas card this year. Emily's pants aren't the best but her intended dress didn't fit, and her on-the-ball mommy (NOT) didn't come up with a plan B. I didn't realize she didn't have appropriate pants for this sweater. She also wouldn't cooperate and kneel like the rest of the kids did. But, I think the picture turned out well. They tried their best not to squint!

It's time for me to attend to my household duties now. Ryan is home sick today. He has the sniffles and with the cold weather, I didn't want him to be out there and get worse. He has to try to be at school tomorrow for his class Christmas party.

Some of my to-do's today are:


menu for tonight ( I was bad and didn't do my plan for the week) :(

tackle cleaning out my closet (big job!)

Have a nice day, everyone!

O Adonai (Lord) December 18

O Adonai (Lord), and leader of the house of Israel, you appeared to Moses in the flame of the burning bush and gave him the law on Sinai: come, and with an outstretched arm, redeem us.

O come, O come, thou Lord of Might,
Who to thy tribes, on Sinai's height,
In ancient times didst give the law
In cloud and majesty and awe.
Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

O Antiphons December 17

As we get closer to Christmas, I've wanted to keep my eyes focused on the Reason for the Season, Jesus, so I'm incorporating these O Antiphons into my prayer time. The first one begins today.

O Sapienta, ( O Wisdom), you came forth from the mouth of the Most High and reaching from beginning to end, you ordered all things mightily and sweetly. Come and teach us the way of prudence.

O Come, O Wisdom from on high,
Who order all things mightily,
To us the path of knowledge show,
And teach us in her ways to go.
Rejoice! Rejoice, Emmanuel
Shall come to the, O Israel!

From Catholic Culture:

O Antiphons - December 17 - 24
December 17 marks the beginning of the "O" Antiphons, the seven jewels of our liturgy, dating back to the fourth century, one for each day until Christmas Eve. These antiphons address Christ with seven magnificent Messianic titles, based on the Old Testament prophecies and types of Christ. The Church recalls the variety of the ills of man before the coming of the Redeemer.

The "O" Antiphons are the verses for the ancient hymn O Come, O Come Emmanuel. The first letter of the Messianic titles: Emmanuel, Rex, Oriens, Clavis, Radix, Adonai, Sapientia—spell out Latin words ERO CRAS, meaning, "Tomorrow, I will come."

To read more about the O Antiphons, check here and here.

Monday, December 15, 2008

What's Up Over Here

We had lots of rain here since the middle of the night and it's just about let up now. It was raining hard when I took the kids to school. Traffic was surprisingly light and we made it fine. We are so not used to the heavy rain. My kids thought school would be cancelled! I told them no chance. If it ever snowed here, maybe, but not for rain!

I had to go out and head to Costco and make our photo Christmas card on site. Normally I can do all that from home but something is wrong with the computer and it will not allow me to upload any pictures. Until I can figure out what's wrong, I don't have any photos to share!

Ryan's Christmas program went very well. His class sang Go Tell It On the Mountain and they did a wonderful job. When he first got out there, I thought he was going to cry, but no, he started smiling in no time. After each class performed (Kindergarten through 3rd grade), they all came out at the end to sing Silent Night in Spanish. All the classes sang well. I wish we could have sat closer so I could take some pictures, but we were way in the back. Ryan would have just been a dot.

On Saturday, Kathryn played in her last game of the season, a playoff game. Her team lost, but they played well. Kathryn will be skipping soccer in the spring and just play for her school basketball team. That's fine by me.

The rest of the day was spent at home trying to tidy up the house, catch up on the never-ending laundry pile, and sort through never-ending piles of paper clutter.
Emily and Kathryn worked on some crafts. Emily is all into drawing pictures and then making stories about what she drew. She is also enjoying cutting out her pictures with her little kid scissors.

I have put Kathryn in charge of decorating our little basket where our Christmas cards that we receive will go. She loves to create, so I'll be interested to see what she comes up with.

On Sunday, we took some pictures of the kids to be used for our Christmas card. The city next to ours has a traffic circle, roundabout, whatever you want to call it, that displays a huge creche, Santa, Snowman, and Christmas tree. They used to display a Menorah, but I didn't see that this time. Anyway, we took some pictures with all the displays, and we chose to use one taken in front of the creche. I'll post a picture when the computer allows me to.

Before I have to run, I want to acknowledge some awards that I received a while ago and am just now posting about it. Forgive me, ladies. I do appreciate it!

First, thank you to Cathy from A Bit of the Blarney for this one:

And thank you to Julieann at My Daily Life as a Wife and Mother for this one:

And with that, I'm off to unload the dishwasher and mop the floor! It needs it badly!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Hello There!

I'm just now able to sit down and make a post! Life has been busy, busy.

So many things are going on at the kid's school. Last week, Kathryn spent three days trying out for the girls basketball team (5th & 6th graders). She made the team! She's so excited and we are all excited for her! We've been shopping for the needy families that Kathryn and Ryan's classes have adopted.

Tonight is Ryan's Christmas program. Of course, procrastinator that I am, I waited for the last minute to think about what he will wear. Clothes were all set, but I forgot that he had outgrown his good shoes. Last night we went to Sears to look for some shoes. We found some that he liked, but they didn't have his size. So I told him I would go out today to find the same ones but at a different store. Luckily, I found his size today! We are all set to go.

I hope we get there early enough to get good seats, but chances are slim. The hall fills up pretty quick and I don't want to get there so early that Emily gets impatient and we have to leave.

I still have major Christmas shopping to do, but I hope to get a lot of it done this weekend. I so admire all you ladies who get your shopping done early. I hope to join you some year. :)
But for now, I'll try not to panic!

I've got to go now, got to get everyone ready for show tonight!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

What A Wonderful World

Yesterday, while driving in the car, I heard this song in the midst of twenty-four hours of Christmas music on the radio station.

I can't help but get a smile on my face while listening to this song. Right away it puts things in perspective in my mind.

God made this beautiful, wonderful world. In spite of terrible economic woes, constant stories of terrorism and all the bad things that go on in this world, life is still beautiful and precious. God is still on the throne, we are still held in His hand. Take the time to appreciate all the beautiful gifts he has given us. Stop and smell the roses. Notice the intricacies of that flower or plant. Notice the beauty and endless expanse of the sky. Hear the sweet songs of the birds as they go about their business gathering food.

And then let's appreciate and love the people that God has placed in our lives. Because that's what it's all about - LOVE!

I hope this song puts a smile on your face as it does to mine!