Thursday, August 6, 2009

From Barren to Beautiful

I think the little piece of land that has brought me the most joy this summer is the little dime-sized area right outside our dining room window. About four years ago, we took out the big cement patio/ramp coming into the side entrance(actually where most people enter) of our house. We never did anything with the soil afterwards, and it was always dry and hard. This year we planted a little flower garden, and it has done surprisingly well. This morning I saw a Hummingbird on one of the flowers, and the butterflies love to rest upon the leaves. We even transplanted some wildflowers from the meadow. I think the Lord is so wonderful the way he allows us to get such satisfaction from the "creating" and cultivating process. Our little projects may not earn prizes or recognition, but the joy they bring to us is more than enough reward!

Anna's Midnight Snack

Anna has never seemed to require a lot of sleep. I have had some children that have slept so much that it worries me, but Anna has never troubled us in that respect! Lately she has taken to waking up at about 11:00 and staying up until midnight or so. This might have really distressed me with our younger children, but since I am usually awake, anyway, it has been a nice time to have with her. Here she is enjoying her "midnight snack" :

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Travis, the Critter Man

Life will always be exciting with Travis. Today he brought home a Snapping turtle he found on the road. The kids thought it was pretty cool!

The Best 10 Reasons For A Messy House:

I like to have a neat house (Don't most people?).Neatness and order are what we strive for in our home, but we often fall short of our expectations. Some days we do better than others. Sometimes we are facing a hardship that puts cleanliness on the back burner. Sometimes life just takes over with appointments and sports practices,etc... And, of course, there are flues and colds to contend with.There are toddlers getting into everything and older kids just plain old being sloppy (sorry, guys!) But there are some good reasons to have a messy home. Not to say we don't clean up those messes or at those times,too; the mess just doesn't seem as bad when it is a "happy" mess. Here are my ten best reasons for a messy home:
1. The kids were busy making discoveries and learning ;perhaps involved in a project.
2. Mom was nursing or cuddling with the baby a little longer than usual.
3. We were reading together.
4. We were spending time with friends and/or family.
5. We were going to Mass or praying.
6. We were playing games- outdoors or indoors.
7. We were swimming, hiking, fishing, etc..
8. Mom was lying on the hammock reading a good book(Hey, I need to put this reason to the test!)
9. We were watching the sunset.
10. We were laughing and enjoying each other's company (I guess you could do this while you clean, too!)
Can you think of some more? Please add to my list!!!!

Reason #11

I'm adding to my own list ;) 11th good reason for a messy house:

11. We're busy cooking!

The Real Reason We Have A 10 Ft Long Table:

Monday, August 3, 2009

What Are We Doing Today?

A friend called me this morning and asked, "What are you doing today?" I lied: "Nothing much." Then I started thinking-what are we doing today??? Here's what I came up with:

Will: Just bought a new dirt bike for himself. He will be busy all day "engineering" dirt bike jumps and riding. At 3:30 he leaves for work until 10:00 tonight. Will has been sleeping in his tree house every night. He prefers it to his room.

JohnPaul: is working down the road, "landscaping" a friend's yard. He will be there until about 3:00. Then he'll probably go to football practice with Travis and the boys.Travis went with him. Last time Travis came home with a big bucket of blackberries. Yum!

Ben: went with Travis and JohnPaul to do yard work. Ben starts football practice tonight!!! Every night for two weeks he has practice! He is very excited to play. He has been in "Madden" x-box training camp for the last six months and has learned the game inside out.

Emily: Sweet Emily is attending the "furious flower" poetry camp in Harrisonburg. This wonderful opportunity was made possible by JMU; they offer a week long poetry camp (free!!)
for girls. (Carey, if you are reading this, thanks so much for telling us about this, and helping make it possible for Emily!) Emily loves to write and couldn't wait for this week!!

Oliver: I wanted to do Oliver's little "write-up" in yellow, b/c he is my sunshine for the day. He is such a fantastic helper, and will be spending most of the day picking up slack for his busy siblings. He will watch the children, help me clean, and probably sneak in a little computer time.The nicest thing is that he is such a cheerful helper. He just said he would go pick blackberries for me!

Sam: is playing with Tommy, Mary Margaret, and Anna rather loudly in the house right now!(I just heard him say, "I'll teach you how to fly, baby."-maybe I should be in there with them!!)Sam and his younger siblings are still in that carefree, unplanned time of life. It is so nice. I realize how fleeting these years are, now. I hope to read with them today and play a game or two at some point.

Yes, we are busy. But it is a happy kind of busy. That's not to say it's always peaceful and happy! The atmosphere is often punctuated with outbursts and whining. But that's just life-and I love my life!

Growing Up

When I was growing up, my parents wrote down some of our(us kids') funnier or more clever sayings in a notebook. ( By the way Mom and Dad, wasn't Erin's notebook the one with the owl on it?) Well, now we've moved onto blogs. So here are two funny things said to me this past week, just so I can remember:

Tommy(age 3): "Mommy, when I grow up to be a baby again, I'm going to nurse like Anna."

Mary Margaret (age 5-said with a huge 'Eureka' tone of voice'): " Mommy-I just realized something. When you grow up and get big, the things you had when you're little are still yours. See, I had this blanket with the stars on it when I was a little girl, and now that I'm all grown up, I still have it. Isn't that amazing?"