Tuesday, March 31, 2009


I posted up an incomplete post for "Works for Me Wednesday" earlier.  I meant so save it as a draft, not to post it!  Sorry about that.  It's down and finished, waiting to be published next Wednesday when WFMW resumes it's regular schedule.  This week, they are having bloggers post a dilemma that they need help with instead.  I don't know if I'll have a post, I'll have to think about it and maybe put something up tonight.
Not that I don't have enough dilemmas....just, I wasn't prepared for that.

Anyway, sorry for my mess up. 

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Small Successes March 26

Alright, so here are my 3 small successes for this week:

1. I got my closet completely clean.  This was fun because it lead me to my treasured box of pictures of Charlie and I when we were dating.  Awwwww.  (In case you were wondering, he looks the same.  I, on the otherhand...well, you can tell I've had 3.5 babies since then.)

2. I paid my library fine.  It was large because I checked out a book on CD, and then one of the CD's was in a vehicle that we sold - about a year ago.  It was great to take the girls, let them pick out books, grab some of my own (some of which are listed on my side bar to the left - this is always changing, as I love to read and am always finishing and starting new books), and to have the relief of paying a fine that I was truly liable for!  Gabrielle, as always, mostly enjoyed looking at the library's frog, lizard, and fish.

3. I found a great deal on Craig's List for a wooden shelf for the girls' room.  I don't know how we ever lived without Craig's List.  Of course, it's more "green" to "reuse", HOWEVER, I can save more $$ if I get what I need on there.  I'm always negotiating.  haha  Anyway, I got the gal to bring it over (yay no pick up!), and then I moved it by myself to the girls' room, cleaned it, and got everything looking pretty in there.  It looks lovely and Juliette-the-Hamster has a much more appropriate home now, as do the piggy banks, lovely jewelry boxes, and treasured books.

Overall, this has been a productive week.  I've been keeping up with laundry, keeping the sink clear, keeping the bed made.  I blame in on a combo of Colette's excessive sleeping due to sickness and the fact that my nesting instinct is starting to kick in.

What are your successes this week?

In Like a Lion...Out Like a...Snow Man?

We are under a blizzard warning!  Today has been the worst snow that I've seen since we've lived in Colorado and I am so thankful to not be out in it!  I did have an appointment with my midwife, but I promptly canceled (apparently along with several other of their patients).  The University is closed, and many businesses and city offices are closed.  My husband, however, is still out there taking advantage of the sudden free time that college students have and is doing his job evangelizing no matter what.  As much as I wish he were here with me, as much as I wish I knew he was safe and not on the road, I really respect him for persevering in his mission.

Speaking of Charlie, I have been meaning to post a picture of his handiwork on here!  On the feast of St. Joseph (appropriate, right?!), Charlie spent the day making a picnic table for our porch!  I've been scouring Craig's List for one for several weeks, but had been unable to find one for a good price and close enough by.  So, he was inspired and decided to make me one!  I am so impressed with it, and here it is today in all of it's snow covered glory:


Only a few days ago, Charlie, the big girls, and I spent the afternoon painting it on a lovely 70 degree day.  haha

Lastly, just because she's cute, here is how my little one feels about today's snow day:

She fell asleep while I was making my bed.  I can't blame the girl, I'd like to take a nap too!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Typical Family Unit

I had to laugh this morning when I checked our family's personal blog.  When Dad set it up at Christmas time, he chose a quote for the tag line that I found amusing at the time, and so very, very true right now!

"A family is a unit composed not only of children, but of men, women, an occasional animal, and the common cold."

Indeed...that has been what is going on in my family unit!  There's children, adults, the annoying hamster that I keep because my animal loving 3 year old adores it, and of course a pulsing sickness that threatens any one of us.  Right now, it's the toddler.  She went through 6 outfits yesterday!  I think that's a record.  I'm just hoping that today is vomit free!

Monday, March 23, 2009


The other day we were in a mall far, far away from here that had a store I found irresistible.  I had never seen it before anywhere else, but the prices were so high, all I could do was move on.  When I came home though, I found it online and much to my delight it had an outlet section with prices that I could live with.
So, I placed an order with Charlie's encouragement and it arrived today (a nice surprise on this day that is making me so weary!)!  The clothes are such nice quality, lay beautifully against the body, and fit just as the size chart says.  Most importantly, the clothes are fashionable without sacrificing modesty.

My favorites were this dress and this skirt (my very favorite!).  Getting new clothes is so rare for me, and I don't think I've ever had anything of this quality before.  I think I've found my favorite new store...


Days that start with finding the toddler in her bed covered in vomit, the 4 year old complaining of a hurting throat and ear, and the not-sick-middle-child asking for demanding a cooked breakfast are a little daunting!
I was dressed in my favorite skirt and top this morning though, ready to conquer the day.  Ready to make team dinner happen tonight despite the obstacles upon opening my eyes, ready to tackle that to-do list.  After being promptly thrown up on however, I'm thinking yoga pants, a strong pot of coffee, and lots of snuggling on the couch are what's actually in order.

Despite it all, I feel really blessed that I can spend my life caring for these little people.  They are such a joy!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

She Has a Name

Charlie is still holding on the the fact that we are only 90% sure that this baby is a girl, there is that 10% chance it's a boy, you know.  However, we have been discussing names for what seems like weeks and I think we've fallen upon one that we love.

The other day, it was the feast of St. Serafina.  Her story touched me so deeply, her ability to unite her suffering to Christ's on the the cross, and the fact that she clung so hard to the theological virtue of Hope.  So, if the 90% is right, this little girl is Serafina. 

Of course we needed a middle name, and that has been harder to agree upon.  Charlie had ideas that I didn't like, I had ideas that he didn't like, and nothing was sounding right.  Why didn't I think of her?  My most favorite female Saint!  This wonderful woman who has made her prayers for me known, who I am convinced has prayed for me and cared about me far longer than I have even been aware of her...

Serafina Therese. 

Sounds just right.  <3

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Early Spring Camping Adventure

Well, our camping trip ended up being such a great time that all of us were sad to leave and are looking forward to the next time we go.  The only negative thing that happened was that Colette was sick most of the time and didn't spend a whole lot of time similing or playing.  In fact, I'm thinking I may take her in to the doctor today.  Anyway, we went hiking and fishing, played in the dirt, built "fairy houses," ate a lot of good food (sausage and pancakes turned out to be everyone's favorite meal, and my favorite one to cook!).  We went to a local candy shop where the owner made 98% of her own candy, that was fun for the girls since they had never been to a candy shop!  Charlie and I stayed up late watching movies, playing Scrabble, doing brain teasers (there's a man, who wants to go home, but two masked men are waiting for him, why can't he go home? etc.) and chatting.  The playground provided some fun, and the girls also enjoyed painting with water colors while we were there.  Here are some pictures!


Playing soccer!


She climbed to the top by herself!  She's a brave one...


Eating smores.


The girls watching a movie before bedtime.


Hiking.  This was Gabrielle's first time to do the whole hike and she did such a great job!


These girls had such a great time playing in the dirt and it showed!  An essential part of childhood...

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Waffles for Breakfast

Our first night out went well for the most part. I failed to mention that it is way too cold out at night in March to go tent camping. Last week, we found a *great* deal on a newer pop up camper on Craig's List. I have to laugh because I never thought we'd become those people, but we all really enjoy the outdoors, we wanted to make it a bit easier with little kids, and it will be great for Charlie in the fall when he goes elk hunting with his friends. We have a heater, electricity (aka iPod playing, movie, and coffee capabities), and much more comfortable bedding. So far we are having so much fun! We have seen deer, elk, and vibrant blue jays. This morning Felicity asked if the camp rangers make waffles for the deer for breakfast! We are near a lake and when we went down to see it a while ago we found that a lot of it is still frozen. We had a great time seeing who could throw little rocks the furthest along the ice and who could make the biggest holes in the ice with big rocks! It's still early in the day,so I anticipate more fun to come. I wish I could post pictures from the phone, but I'll put some up when I get home.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Spring Break Camping

We are on our way out for a 4 day camping trip in the beautiful foothills. Depending on how it goes, we may head to the national park for another few days. I'm writing from Charlies iPhone and will try to update while we are out there! High tech camping!!!!!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Small Successes March 5

Well, here are my 3 small successes this week.

1. I got the girls to the dentist successfully.  Last week, I went South on the highway when I needed to go North and I was almost to Denver before I realized that I was wayyyy off.  Thankfully the office was nice about it and scheduled another appointment for the girls for this week.  The girls weren't so nice about it though, as they LOVE going to the dentist and talk about "Dr. Keith" all the time, so they were devastated.  Things went much more smoothly this week and we actually got there with no problems, and have princess toothbrushes and happy girls to show for it.  (everyone has perfect teeth, no cavities and no plaque!  yay!)

2. I mostly caught up with the housework that fell by the wayside while I was sick.  This includes keeping the dishes done, the sink clear and clean, and the bed made every day.

3. I cleaned my closet and bathroom cabinets, clearing them of all the unnecessary things I had in them.

Check out the successes of others this week!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Feed a body, feed a soul


For perhaps the first 3 weeks after we arrived in Colorado last Fall, women showed up at my door step with meals for our family.  We had just moved to a new state, away from family, and I had given birth only 2 days before we arrived.  These meals from neighbors, new friends, and wives of headquarters men who I had only briefly, if that, met were not only nourishment for the bodies of my family, but to my soul as a displaced, lonely (Charlie worked 24/7 as soon as we got here), tired mama.  It lifted one of the greatest burdens of my day, I could focus on caring for my very young children, unpacking the house, and *trying* to heal rather than planning, grocery shopping in a strange land, and spending hours cooking and cleaning up.  I had never had the experience of this onslaught of generosity postpartum, and it was not only humbling, but truly lifted my spirit.

Today, I found a post on Faith & Family live about meals for other families and what different people bring to those who have just had a new family member join them.  The timing was perfect, as I was thinking about this post just the other night.  Check it out if you can!

Just the other day, I had the privilege of preparing a meal for a family who just brought their baby home from NICU, and a mother who experienced an emergency cesarean - a very tender topic to my heart.  In about a week and a half I'm scheduled for another family and I'm looking forward to it!  There are many tips over on F&F about this topic, but there are a few things I try to keep in mind when I am preparing a meal for others.

 The first thing I try to consider is the nutritional need of a nursing mother, and one who is recovering from a marathon of physical hardship!  The next thing to consider is how many people are in the family, and how many children.  There is no sense in sending adult fare to a family with 5 kids, the kids won't eat it and mama will still have to cook.  Last, I consider my own finances.  I like to bring a small gift (maybe diapers?) and flowers, but in order to afford those things, I need to be frugal with the cost of the food without cutting quality.  The best way to do that is to be aware of what I have and what is currently on sale.  For example, on Saturday, I took that family a roast with potatoes, carrots, and celery, a fruit salad, bread, and oatmeal cherry chocolate chip cookies.  The meat was on a considerable sale, I had the veggies, I had the fruit, I made the bread and the cookies with items already in my pantry.  Another time, I made my mom's lasagana, because I was already making 2 for team dinner.  And another time, I made minestrone soup with a big salad and bread because it traveled easily and needed to be sent from my town to FOCUS headquarters via carpool.

All in all, I think sharing meals is such a beautiful ministry.  I am so thankful for the gift they have been to me, and I take great joy in sharing them with others!