Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
The kids are enjoying their Christmas break. They get a whole three weeks off! So they won't return to school until January 11th. Needless to say, they are so excited about Christmas coming.
Emily recently participated in the school Christmas program with her class. They sang a little song that I don't remember the name of - not a well known carol. She also portrayed a shepherd in the little class play they performed - real cute! Now during this vacation, she needs to practice a cheer that she will be performing during halftime at a basketball tournament in January. It's just a minute routine that anyone in the school can participate in, K-8th. She really wants to be a cheerleader, when she's older, but I don't know if that will happen. It's quite expensive.
Ryan also participated in the school Christmas program. His class sang Away in the Manger. He enjoyed it, but doesn't get too excited about those kinds of things. Right now, he spends his time reading about animals, playing with his toy animals, watching animal shows or doing anything with animals. He just loves animals and knows so much about any kind. He talks about wanting to be a zookeeper. I'll have to look into some programs that our local zoo has to offer. His favorite animal is the koala. Lately, he's asking me to get a chameleon---- not yet!
Kathryn got braces about two weeks ago. Luckily, she didn't have much discomfort with them. She doesn't mind wearing them, because she sees so many other kids with them. She's twelve now, and I can see little changes going on with her. Friends are starting to be a big deal with her. Parents can sometimes do embarrassing things-LOL! Last night, she had a sleepover with one of her friends and I just got a call asking if she could stay just a little bit longer--pleeeease!
This is the picture we settled on for our Christmas card. Everyone is smiling and looking at the camera. It was cold that day and no one wanted to go down to the beach to try and attempt to get decent poses so we decided to just have the kids sit on our front porch. This picture was taken before Kathryn got her braces.
Steve also has three weeks off of work. The university where he works has mandatory furlough days and that combined with vacation days enables him to take the time off. We're not taking any trips, but just enjoying family time together and doing some fun local things.
I still have to do a little wrapping and a little bit more baking. I made pumpkin bread yesterday and today I want to make cranberry bread. Kathryn wanted to try her hand at making eggnog muffins, so I looked up a recipe and maybe we can to that tomorrow.
Oh, and I need to find our tree ornaments! We have our tree, but we cannot find the box with our ornaments! They should be in the garage, but so far, no luck. Maybe we'll have to go to the dollar store and see what they have!
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Lo, how a Rose e'er blooming from tender stem hath sprung!
Of Jesse's lineage coming, as men of old have sung.
It came, a floweret bright, amid the cold of winter,
When half spent was the night.
Isaiah 'twas foretold it, the Rose I have in mind;
Mary we behold it, the Virgin Mother kind.
To show God's love aright, she bore to us a Savior,
When half spent was the night.
The shepherds heard the story proclaimed by angels bright,
How Christ, the Lord of glory was born on earth this night.
To Bethlehem they sped and in the manger they found Him,
As angel heralds said.
This Flower, whose fragrance tender with sweetness fills the air,
Dispels with glorious splendor the darkness everywhere;
True man, yet very God, from sin and death He saves us,
And lightens every load.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
And with fear and trembling stand;
Ponder nothing earthly minded,
For with blessing in His hand,
Christ our God to earth descendeth,
Our full homage to demand.
King of kings, yet born of Mary,
As of old on earth He stood,
Lord of lords, in human vesture,
In the body and the blood;
He will give to all the faithful
His own self for heavenly food.
Rank on rank the host of heaven
Spreads its vanguard on the way,
As the Light of light descendeth
From the realms of endless day,
That the powers of hell may vanish
As the darkness clears away.
At His feet the six wingèd seraph,
Cherubim with sleepless eye,
Veil their faces to the presence,
As with ceaseless voice they cry:
Alleluia, Lord Most High!
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Monday, November 9, 2009
We drove down to Shoreline Village in my old hometown of Long Beach. It's situated near the water and has lots of shops and eateries. It has changed quite a bit since I lived there.
And as a side, here is Emily in her Our Lady of Lourdes costume that I fumbled my way through!
I don't know who the saints are in front nor in back of her. Cute!
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Thank the Lord I've been spared from getting sick, so far. I've been able to tend to everyone as needed. I hope this has us covered for the rest of the season, but we have a long way to go.
Our mornings are cold but the days warm up to the low 70's. We're probably good for a few more weeks of warmer weather before it gets to be cold all the time.
I'm planning on knitting up some scarves and hats for the kids. I also want to start up some dishcloths for Christmas giving. I want to say that I'm going to start my Christmas shopping and all that planning, but my track record proves that it probably won't happen. I'll just say that everything will get done by December 24th!
Pictures of Emily in her homemade costume of Our Lady of Lourdes are still forthcoming. For some reason, I couldn't upload any pictures onto the computer tonight. I'll try again tomorrow.
Friday, October 30, 2009
After all that cleaning, it ends up that the new wiring that was installed (down the street a couple of blocks away) doesn't reach to our house. The technician apologized, but I guess it wasn't really his fault. He's under the assumption that wiring is ready to go and he just puts things together to make it work. It's a good thing that I didn't cancel are current satellite programming.
At least I got some good cleaning in behind those hard to get to areas!
I also spent a lot of time during the week on attempting to sew Emily a costume for the school Saints Day festivities. She wanted to dress as the Blessed Mother, so we chose Our Lady of Lourdes. It looked like an easy costume to sew. I bought her an XL T-shirt for the gown and then sewed the veil. She wore a blue sash around her waist, a rosary hanging from her arm, and two pink roses as her feet. I based it all on this picture:
It was actually quite easy to sew. The hard part was trying to figure out where all my sewing tools were. I couldn't quite remember where all my bobbins were and where the pins were. My organizational skills are lacking in the sewing department. Oh, and then once I was ready to actually sew, my presser foot was missing! Who knows where that went. I used a different one that did the job.
Oh, Therese! I wish I could sew like you! I need to start practicing!
I hope I can post a decent picture of Emily wearing the costume. Steve was the assigned photographer and I haven't seen any of his shots. He's not home yet. I didn't get to attend the actual parade because I had to stay home and take care of Ryan, who's sick and didn't go to school.
Thank you all so much for keeping him in your prayers. I took him to the doctor today as he developed some flu symptoms that got me concerned. The doctor seems to think the stomach problems are just remnants from "irregularity". It can take a while for his insides to feel better. That was good to hear. And his flu symptoms are just that. He has the flu.
I asked if it was the dreaded swine flu. He said it was possible, but he didn't do any tests on him. He said treat it like any other flu - lots of fluids and rest. I'll be busy sanitizing everything hoping this doesn't spread! And my mother is here visiting! She better not catch this or I'll feel horrible!
Now it's time to wait for the girls to arrive home. I'm looking forward to hearing all about the Saints Day parade and checking out the pictures!
Monday, October 26, 2009
So after all the filming was done, I thought I'd give it a try, not knowing the slightest thing about putting a movie together. It took such a long time, with trial and error, but I finally got it put together. Kathryn told me where she wanted the scenes to go and voila! Of course, it was pretty plain, no special effects, music, etc. But, I can say that we both learned a little about movie making! With a little guidance, I think she can handle the next one, if there is ever another one.
Ryan has been suffering from tummy problems lately. He's been having stomach aches and after about a week of dealing with that, I took him to the doctor where it's thought he may have constipation problems. Well, after giving him medicine and making changes in his diet, the stomach aches are still there, but seem to be getting better, so I guess I'll just wait a little bit more for any changes. He's still in great spirits and the discomfort doesn't seem to keep him from having a smile on his face and a kiss for mom! He's anxiously waiting for the Ice Age movie to come out on DVD tomorrow. He loves that movie and anything else that has to do with it.
So, I guess tomorrow I'll hit the store and get it for him. Hopefully, I won't get tempted to get something for me. Maybe since Halloween is just around the corner, I'll get a bag of Sweet Tarts! I love that candy!
Thursday, October 8, 2009
Friday, October 2, 2009
I do have to say that I'm not a natural cook, meaning, I'm not very imaginative and I can easily get into a rut, having the same meals over and over. I don't experiment at all. I'm not good at combining spices together on my own, just to try it. I need to follow recipes.
Growing up, my mother cooked the same foods over and over because my father was a very picky eater and only wanted certain foods. Sadly, I never saw my mother enjoying herself cooking. When I moved out on my own, I only knew how to cook a few things, so I began to look for recipes that would expand my palate. I discovered lots of new wonderful foods.
So, on to how I make my menu plan. I usually start by asking everyone if there's something special they would like to have for the week. Most of the time, it's something easy like tacos or spaghetti. I try to incorporate something like that.
Then I check my freezer, refrigerator, and pantry to see if there is anything I can plan a meal around. For example, I have lots of chicken thighs in my freezer, so I look to see if I have any recipes that can use them. If not, I look up recipes online like Allrecipes or Taste of Home. I just plug in the ingredient and recipes will pop up using that ingredient. Then I just choose one that sounds good and doesn't have anything exotic or elaborate procedures. I do the same thing if I need to use up some cans of kidney beans, evaporated milk, or even some bottled sauces that have been in the refrigerator for awhile but haven't expired yet.
Once I've decided on my main meal, I decide on what sides could go with that. I find a starch like rice, potatoes, or noodles and then find a vegetable dish. A salad is usually included but not always.
Some people look at the sale flyers to see what's on sale, and plan meals around that, but I have to admit that I'm not in the habit of doing that. I get flustered having all those flyers around and then feeling like I have to visit these different stores to take advantage of the sale.
I also take into account if there are any days during the week where I won't have much time to cook, like school meetings, sports practice or anything like that. On those days, I plan on something simple that I can just throw together, leftovers or a slow cooker recipe.
And, that is how I develop my menu plans! Some helpful sites that I go to when I need some ideas are:
I'm an Organizing Junkie (she's the host for Menu Plan Monday where you can get lots of ideas from other people's menus for the week)
Diary of a Stay at Home Mom ( she hosts Slow Cooking Thursday's with lots of great recipes using the slow cooker)
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Tuesday: Hamburgers, Waffle fries, corn on the cob
Wednesday: Hot dogs, chips, carrot sticks with Ranch, fruit. This is my busy day with all the kids having practice, so this is something quick.
Thursday: Cheddar Beef Enchiladas, Spanish rice w/pinto beans, salad
Friday: Orange Chicken, rice, salad
Saturday: Nachos, fruit
Sunday: Slow Cooker Latin Chicken, Spanish rice w/beans, salad
Monday, September 28, 2009
Emily is enjoying Kindergarten. She loves learning all the songs at morning prayer and Mass at school. I really must try to get her on video. It's just precious. Right now she sings Immaculate Mary, The Servant Song and a version of Glory to God in the Highest. Maybe she'll like to sing in the children's choir. But, she can't do that until the 2nd grade. She's also doing great at soccer. She scored five goals in her last game! Her coach has to rein her in so that others can have a chance at scoring. I have to say that she's the most competitive of my children!
Ryan is all into the Ice Age movie right now. He's counting the days until the movie comes out in DVD. His favorite subject in school is spelling. This week he is the Student of the Week. He gets to bring in some of his favorite things to share with his class. He's very excited!
Kathryn is getting excited for her birthday coming up. She gets to go to Disneyland with Steve. They have some deal where you can get in free on your birthday, so Steve is going to take her. We can't afford to all go. It costs so much now. She made some new friends at school and they are having loads of fun doing projects together.
Steve is in baseball heaven right now helping to coach Ryan and his team this Fall. So far, the team is doing well, they haven't lost a game yet. It's surprising because there are many players on the team that have never played before. They can barely swing the bat. But Fall ball is mainly instructional. No official score is kept and there are no wins and losses (but we still like to pretend-hee hee).
As for myself, I'm enjoying having the house to myself while the kids are in school. I'm able to get more done for longer stretches. It's nice when I'm able to wash, fold and put away the laundry all in one swoop! I'm having to learn to pace myself because I tend to try to do so much to take advantage of the kids being gone that I don't take breaks and end up exhausting myself. Sometimes I feel guilty that I'm not working bringing in a paycheck and heaven forbid that I lay on the sofa or bed and read a book! Anyway, I thank the Lord that at this point in my life, I'm able to be home.
So that's what's been going on in my household. I hope I can start posting more often. I still need to put up my blogroll, and I've read a few more books, so I can add them to my list.
Blessings to all!
Friday, September 4, 2009
There is a spirituality group that meets every Thursday morning to pray a decade of the rosary and to pray for the, students, teachers, school, etc. I'm thrilled to be a part of it because goodness knows the spiritual education of our children is so important.
I'm going to be re-evaluating my schedule now that all the kids are in school full-time. I hope to be able to make good use of the time that I have to make a good home for my husband and kids.
Have a good weekend everyone. I'll leave with a recent song that I like. YouTube won't allow me to embed this but I can leave this link.
Matisyahu is an Hasidic Jew and there is such a good message with this song. Let us always pray for peace and bring love wherever we go!
Saturday, August 22, 2009
We did a little baking. Kathryn wanted to make these Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins, and she did a terrific job. They were delicious.
We made a visit to the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles.
This pond here shows all the tar that is still there. Gases still rise up from the earth below.
This is a depiction of how a woolly mammoth baby got stuck in the tar while momma and sibling looked on helplessly.
The ground at the museum has lots of spots like this. Tar just coming up from the ground.
Here you can see Emily standing in front of the skeleton of a woolly mammoth.
The next shots are from our short visit to the beach to collect some shells. We were only there for about half an hour. The shells around there are pretty small and mostly pieces, but they still have beauty to them.
And I can't end without a photo of some of my harvest of wonderful tasting tomatoes! I have had a continuous supply of them and they are delicious!
Thursday, August 20, 2009
We visited the La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles. It was a very interesting place and Ryan especially loved it. We learned about the animals that lived in that area eons ago and got to see the fossils. Most of them were trapped in the tar or asphalt. There are still fossils being discovered today and we got to see some people (I forget the name of them) working on them.
We also went to the beach. Unfortunately, I forgot to bring my camera. We had a blast. I pretty much stayed under the umbrella, but enjoyed watching the kids run from the waves.
Kathryn has finished her summer basketball season. Her team went undefeated and they won the championship for her team's division just yesterday! Yea!
Today, Kathryn and I had a consultation with an orthodontist. She needs to have braces, but we're not sure when we'll actually do it. Ryan is going to be referred by our dentist in a couple of months. Having two kids in braces is going to cost us a good chunk of money and I really think Ryan will need them more than Kathryn. So I don't know how we'll handle this right now. Lots of playing around with the budget. I wish I could find that lottery ticket that I misplaced :)
Well, school begins on Monday. All three will finally be in school. It's been fun having the kids home all summer and I think I will miss having them around. I hope I don't get too teary when I see little Emily in her uniform standing in the Kindergarten line! She's my baby and when I allow myself to think about her starting school...well, I don't want to stay there too long. AAAGH!! MY KIDS ARE GROWING TOO FAST!!!!!!!! I'm sure many of you can relate.
Well, it's late now and the bed is calling my name. I hope I can get a post in tomorrow with some pictures!
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
After telling the kids how much I loved them and how proud I was to be their mother, the conversation went something like this:
Me: I wouldn't trade you guys for a million dollars! I wouldn't trade you for ten million dollars!!
Emily: What would you trade us for?
Emily: What's the Spanish word for piñata?
Monday, August 3, 2009
This summer, the routines have flown out the window. After two kids with pneumonia, things were slightly askew, but everyone is better now and I look forward to planning things again and actually going through with them, God willing!
Today will be a busy day. I have some errands to do, then pay a visit to my mother, who I haven't seen in awhile. I have lots of tomatoes to give her. My tomato plant has really started producing. I've had to start picking them while they are slightly orange, almost red. When I wait for them to get a nice red color, they've already gotten a little soft and mushy on the the inside. But they are delicious. A wonderful aroma with a taste that's hard to get all the time from the grocery store.
My blog has been neglected lately and I really need to update my list of books read. I've been on a kick for reading Michael Connelly books. My sister-in-law let me borrow some of her books because she knew I liked the Jack Bauer character from "24". The main character from these books, Harry Bosch, is a lot like Jack Bauer. The ones I've read so far are really good. They are good who dunnit, crime fiction stories. There is a little swearing and some adult situations, ..ahem, but not an excessive amount, and well, they are crime stories.
Last night, I saw the movie The Pursuit of Happyness. I just loved it! What an inspiring story about a father doing everything he can to provide a better life for his son! I stayed up way too late to finish this one and by the end, I just had tears falling down. If you've never seen this movie, I'd recommend it if you don't mind shedding a few tears! There's not many movies I give 5 stars to on my Netflix queue, but this is one.
Well, I need to get going with the rest of my day. I hope you all have a blessed week!
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Kathryn started with a little cold. She got over that quickly without any disruption of any summer plans. Then Ryan got a cold, which turned into a cough, which turned into some upper respiratory infection. I held off going to the doctor thinking he would turn the corner any day. It never did, so we finally paid a visit to the dr. After his round of antibiotics, he's well. Thank the Lord. Now Emily has the cough and I have it as well! We've both been up the past two nights hacking away. Hopefully, it won't get worse.
Before the summer started, I bought four swim passes so we could hang out at the pool. Since people are getting sick, we haven't been able to use the passes as much I as thought we would. We haven't been sightseeing as much as I wanted to, but we are still managing to have some fun, even if its just playing around with sidewalk chalk, puttering in the garden, or just making up games.
Ah, such is life. It's what happens when we're busy making other plans.
During this busy time, I've been scarce in the blogosphere, but I hope I can catch up with all of you soon! I'm embarrassed to say my reader has over 500 posts and I may just have to press the dreaded, Mark All As Read!!
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Saturday, July 4, 2009
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009
The primer has been applied everywhere. All that's left is the final painting! Yeah! My friends and I will work on it this coming Monday.
I know this is blurry, but these are the little chrysalides doing their hidden work to become butterflies. After seeing Suzy's butterfly/chrysalis post, I wanted to do this too with the kids. She has a beautiful picture of the chrysalides. Ours look just like that, but of course hers aren't blurry. I think we may have four or five more days before the butterflies emerge.
Today was Emily's last day of preschool, sniff, sniff. She had a little party, then afterwards, many of the kids and their parents met at the park for a little fun. She is now looking forward to being a big girl and going to Kindergarten and being at the same school that Kathryn and Ryan attend.
Last night was the last meeting of the parent meetings I've been attending all year at the elementary school. It has been such a blessing. It hasn't been well attended, but those parents that did attend somewhat regularly were greatly aided in trying to be better parents. We discussed problems that we have in trying to raise Catholic children in todays world. We had discussions about our spiritual journeys, we prayed the Rosary, we had Adoration in the chapel, and we had good laughs sprinkled in there, too. Hopefully, the group will continue the next school year.
Remember my tree story last year? My trees were dying. Well, I think one of them is finally coming around. Instead of seeing brown leaves everywhere, I now see green ones sprouting all over. It looks so nice and I'm hopeful that the tree is in recovery and we'll get our shade back. The other two still look sparse but maybe there's hope!
I know the tree looks exactly like it did when I mentioned it last year, but it did get worse throughout the year. There's more green now.
I'll finally end this post with some of my flowers.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Thursday, June 4, 2009
Monday, my friends came over to give me a hand in my kitchen. It's taken so long because I'm not working on it everyday. I try to do a little, but cooking, laundry, and other necessary cleaning throughout the house gets in the way, as well as errands I need to run. The update is, all the wallpaper as been stripped from the walls, peeling has been finished and primer has been placed on most of the walls and cabinets. I still need to sand some of the diamond window panes and then we can get going on that. There is light at the end of the tunnel!
Ryan played his last baseball game of the season. They lost their playoff game. But that's not the end of sports! He will be practicing in the summer for Fall Ball in September. Emily is playing T-Ball and taking a general sports class through Sports and Recreation. She just has three more weeks of that. Oh, then I can't forget swimming. She's signed up for a two week class. Kathryn will be taking a basketball class.
I had to do some major cleaning in my pantry. Let me just say, moths-dried goods, yuck! I threw out old food packages, old containers, and sorted through canned goods checking the expiration dates and whatnot. I scrubbed the shelves and bought new containers to use for all the new rice, pasta and flour I had to purchase. I vowed that I will go through my pantry more often and do a better job with my rotation of goods.
This morning I worked on dinner food prep. We are having jumbo shells stuffed with taco meat. I cooked the shells already and I would have cooked the meat, but I don't have enough ground beef. I need to stop at the store and pick up more. My salad is prepared.
I'm off to the grocery store now. Have a good day everyone!
Thursday, May 28, 2009
The gardenias are just starting to bloom. They smell so lovely! So far, only a few have bloomed, but there are tons of buds just waiting to open.
This picture of the miniature roses was taken at night, hence the artificial lighting. By the time I got around to take a daytime shot, they were past their prime.
My garden would not be complete without pansies. These happy flowers are one of my favorites! If you look closely, you'll see some morning glories trying to grow in there. They are popping up like weeds. I keep pulling them out, but new ones show up. They are from left over seeds from last years morning glories.
And lastly, here is Ryan's green bean plant. He started it in his classroom and I transferred it to a bigger pot. The little beans are just starting to grow. So cute!
I hope I can share more pictures throughout the season. May you all have a lovely spring day!
Thursday, May 21, 2009
Be an instrument of gold or steel, of platinum or of iron - big or small, delicate or rough. They're all useful. Each serves its own purpose. Who would dare say that the carpenter's saw is any less useful than the surgeon's scalpel? Your duty is to be an instrument.
St. Josemaria Escriva - The Way, No. 484
Monday, May 18, 2009
Looking forward to: Summer!