Monday, August 31, 2009

A Pink Cowgirl Party...


... for Twinkle Toes' 6th Birthday! 

My Daybook ~ August 31, 2009

FOR TODAY: August 31st, 2009

Outside my Window... it looks like it is going to be another beautiful and sunny day!

I am thinking... about how different it is when hubby is gone on a fire now.  When we were first married, I used the time to visit friends, watch movies, catch up on projects and so much more.  Now it seems like I can just barely keep up with everything! I am sure it will get a little bit easier as the week goes on...

I am thankful... that hubby was able to call home last night, even if it was just for a couple minutes. (The call lasted one minute and fifty-one seconds to be exact!)  It was he first time I had spoken with him since he left, early last Friday morning.  It was so nice to hear his voice, find out where he is working, and that he was able to say Happy Birthday to Twinkle Toes.  He was calling from a satellite phone, which is why he had to keep it so short, from their site camp in the wilderness.  (Their food and supplies are being flown in each day.)

From the kitchen... lots of leftovers from yesterday.

From the school room... Today the girls begin "C" week.  Hopefully I will have a chance to post some pictures from "B" week soon.  It was a great week, but with Twinkle Toes' Birthday this weekend I didn't have a chance to upload any photos, yet...  =)

Living the Liturgical year at Home... I'm working on a compiling a post over at Catholic Cuisine with all the archives for the September feasts!   (Update:  Here's the link!) September 5th is the feast of Blessed Mother Teresa, so we will probably make some Indian Sweet Bread and Chai Tea like last year.

I am creating... t-shirts for our Little Flowers Group.  I sure hope the appliques I ordered from Michaels arrive in time.  Our first meeting is NEXT WEEK!

I am reading... lots of books to my children.  Last week our basket included books about St. Bernadette, Birds, Blueberries and other things that start with B.  This week we are moving on to St. Cecilia, St. Christopher, Creeks & Ponds and more!

I am going... to my Aunt's for a visit and then to our Home School Group's annual planning meeting tomorrow night.

I am wearing... a pair of black knit gauchos and pink maternity t-shirt.  I am hoping to find a little time to exercise after lunch. 

I am hoping... that I can keep up with school this week.  I didn't have any time to finalize my plans for the week over the weekend, and my evenings have been super busy without Hubby's help. 

I am hearing... the children getting up and dressed for school.  Breakfast is simple this morning, cold cereal.  Perfect for "C" week, right!?!

Around the house... lots of birthday decorations that I was just too tired to take down last night!  Twinkle Toes had so much fun at her little party, I'll have to upload a few pictures soon.  I am also behind on the laundry and the floors all need to be cleaned.   Why is it SO easy to get SO behind SO fast?!?

One of my favorite things... all of my wonderful memories of my Grandmother. (My Grandma passed away at the age of 61 when I was only 12.  I was her first Grandchild and we were very close.)  Yesterday, during Twinkle Toes birthday party, I couldn't help but think how much my children would have loved her, and could picture her singing "Thank Heaven for Little Girls" like she always did on my birthdays!  Miss you Grandma!

A Few Plans For This Week...
  • Our third week of school
  • Our Home School Group's planning meeting
  • Mass & Benediction on Friday

A picture thought I am sharing:

I just love this picture from a couple weeks ago, when my cousin and her family came over for a visit.   Her son was showing our daughter a little froggy they had caught! 

Well, I must get going if I hope to start our school day on time.  I hope you all have a great week!

To see more Daybook's visit Peggy!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Now We Are Six!

When I was one,

I had just begun.

When I was two,

I was nearly new.

When I was three,

I was hardly me.

When I was four,

I was not much more.

When I was five,

I was just alive.

But now I am six,

I’m as clever as clever.

So I think I’ll be six
now and forever.

~A.A. Milne

Happy 6th Birthday
to our little Twinkle Toes!

Friday, August 28, 2009

A Change of Plans, a Birthday, and a Prayer Request

Last night, between 5:30-6:00 p.m., I was preparing dinner in honor of St. Monica and St. Augustine and looking forward to our weekend.   My husband had just finished his 40 hours for the week and would be home soon.  The phone rang and it was Hubby saying that he had just been given a fire assignment (the first for this year) and would be leaving for California in the morning...

Well, Twinkle Toes turns six on Sunday.  This year it was just going to be our family (she'll have her big birthday party with friends next year, for her 7th birthday), so we were thinking of driving to the coast on Saturday and then having her requested "cowgirl" themed party on Sunday afternoon.   ... sigh...   I was so sad that Hubby was going to miss yet another birthday!

We usually always celebrate birthdays ON our children's birthdays, but we decided, this time, that I would throw a cake in the oven and we would have a little birthday celebration before he left!  (That way he could also see her open the gift we were so excited to give her!)   So as dinner was simmering on the stove, I quickly baked a cake.  I was so excited to have a reason to make Madeline's Gateau Chapeau after all!  (Remember our recent Madeline Lap Book?)

Twinkle Toes was very excited!

After the cake, we brought out her gift!  
It was the cutest thing, watching her reaction as she opened the box. 

As soon as she saw the cradle she sat down on the hearth and pretty much froze.  
She was so excited!

She then jumped up and ran to give her daddy and I a hug, before taking it out of the box!

Then she was off to find a doll!

Oh! And Twinkle Toes wasn't the only one that loved the new cradle! ;) 

Well, very early this morning hubby had to leave, and I haven't spoken with him since.  He wasn't sure if he'd be able to call during this assignment or not, due to the location.  Rascal got up early to see him off with me, and had tears rolling down his cheeks as his daddy pulled out of the driveway.  It is going to be a hard couple weeks... 

In the meantime, I am still going to try to pull off a "cowgirl" party on Sunday for Twinkle Toes.  I actually ended up asking a couple of her little friends (whom we saw at Mass and Benediction this morning) to join us.  It will be nice to have a little bit of company...

Anyhow, I would really appreciate any prayers you can spare, for his safety.  Thank you!! 

Catholic Tote Bag Giveaway

I can't tell you how excited I am to be able to host a couple giveaways sponsored by Catholic Embroidery!, a special branch of Precision Embroidery LLC, was founded in 2007 as a family-owned and operated business in order to provide customers with high quality embroidery and monogramming. What started as a sewing hobby for the oldest daughters in our family has turned into an enterprise that, we hope, will continue to help provide for them as they work in a positive, Christ-centered fashion with a passion! Thank you for sharing in their endeavor.
One lucky visitor will win this beautiful Catholic Tote Bag:

Stitched with our beautiful Cross and Lily/Wheat design, this brown bag is made of durable microfiber material and has the added plus of heavy-duty handles and an inside zip pocket. Measures 18" by 12" by 3".

To enter this give-away:  Please leave a comment on this post before Midnight (PST) on Monday, September 7, 2009.   I will randomly draw a name and announce the winner on September 8th, the Blessed Mother's Birthday!!

Next:  Head on over to Catholic Cuisine for a chance to win a lovely "Catholic Cuisine" apron!

Also, Be sure to visit Catholic Embroidery:  Mary Serafino, the founder of, in addition to sponsoring this awesome giveaway, has generously extended the following offer as well.
I would also like to offer your readers a coupon code, so everyone can walk away a "winner". If they use the coupon code: STTHERESE I will give them FREE SHIPPING on any order. This coupon is valid until the feast of St. Michael, September 29th.

I've already placed an order for a few ribboned aprons which I am planning on giving my girls for Christmas. (As well as another one for myself!)   There is so much to choose from including: beautiful Bookmarks, Handkerchiefs, Totes, Mass bags, and so much more!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Small Successes :: August 27, 2009

"It’s important for moms to recognize that all the small successes in our days can add up to one big triumph. So on Thursday of each week, we do exactly that."

~ 1 ~

Last week I received a call from the library letting us know that Rascal's name had been picked from the Summer Reading Program drawing, and that he had won a Barnes & Noble gift card!  You know, when the children all turned in their drawing slips it did go through my mind that we might have a slight advantage with five of their names getting entered.  ;)  Yet another benefit to living in a small town and having a "big" family!

~ 2 ~

Math is going GREAT this year!  Talking to Dr. Cotter, the author of Right Start, at the conference last May really helped me understand the program a little better and now I too (my children already did) LOVE the program.  

~ 3 ~

I finally got back in to see my midwife yesterday! (It had been 7 weeks, since my last appt.  I had one scheduled for a couple weeks ago, but it had to be canceled since it ended up being at the same time as hubby's diagnostic procedure -- his biopsy's came back negative by the way!!! Thanks for all the prayers!)  The appointment went great and I was very happy to hear that even though I've had some contractions each night, at this point I don't need to worry about bedrest.  My midwife said "Your just being YOU!" (I tend to contract daily from here on out, but only a few times has that progressed into actual pre-term labor.)

Oh, and I had a new nurse check me in.  She asked "So, is this your first or second?"  I just said,"ummmmmm...." (with a smile!) She said "your THIRD!!!!!"  I laughed...  "NOT your FOURTH!!!"  Nope, my ummmm, sixth.  (Then I went on to explain that this is actually my eighth pregnancy, and that I have two little ones in heaven.)   I wish I had a picture of her face!   ;) 

What are your Small Successes this week?

Stop by Faith and Family Live to read more of this week's Small Successes.

My New Catholic Apron

Since you already got to see the girls new apron earlier this week, and since it doesn't look like I'm going to have a chance to post a daybook this week, I thought I'd post a picture one of my new favorite things:  my new apron!  It was one of the items in the wonderful Catholic Mom's Ultimate Git Set I recently won.

 I LOVE it!!

Isn't the embroidered image beautiful and the quote perfect!?!

Thank you to both Catholic Embroidery and Catholic Mom!

The interesting thing is that, even before I won the set from Catholic Mom, I had already been talking to Mary, the founder of Catholic Embroidery, about hosting a give-away here and at Catholic Cuisine, which I will be posting soon!!  

On Teaching Children

I received the following article from a friend who typed it up from an old 1992 copy of "The Catholic Hearth" to preserve and share.   It is just beautiful!

"To Teach"
by Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson

There is a tradition, probably untrustworthy, that in certain well‐known schools the new assistant master begins his career by teaching the older students advanced subjects, and ends it, if he is successful, by rising to the high levels of infants and alphabets. At any rate the tradition witnesses to a profound truth. It is comparatively easy to lecture to Plato on philosophy or to St. Thomas on theology;  but it requires almost superhuman knowledge and effort and skill to discourse effectively to children on any subject whatever.

First, there is the imarity between the mind that receives and the truth that is to be received; next, there is the extremely coarse and unsubtle instrument known as human language by which the work must be done, and this is even further limited by the narrowed vocabulary to be employed in this instance; lastly, there is the handicap of the teacher’s own more mature experience. (It is as if a man were to set out to lecture to birds on Wagner, aided only by a tom‐tom for his musical illustration.)

But there is one subject, thank God! In which these difficulties are reduced to a minimum, and that is the knowledge of God and Jesus Christ which is eternal life. The difficulties, in fact, on this subject lie in quite another direction. It is comparatively easy for a child to become a “man of understanding”; it is the difficulty for the rest of us to be “converted and become as little children” in grace. The child, like the human race in its infancy, is not weighted and hampered by the obscurity which a little disproportioned knowledge cast; it has no temptation to think that since it understands about five things, it can therefore understand five thousand, or that “what it knows not is not knowledge.” This, surely, is one reason why our Blessed Lord sets a child in the midst as our model, and laments how hard it is for “those that have riches to enter into the kingdom of heaven.” If we have nothing we are not avaricious or complacent; if we are obedient we have gained the mastery of ourselves; if we are inexperienced we think nothing too good to be true. The child then begins in hope where the wise man leaves off in despair.

This “capacity for God,” then, this simplicity, this untarnished conscience, this instinctive knowledge of helplessness and ignorance, common to all true children – these things not to be improved upon by any teacher: he can only seek to safeguard them; and, meantime, he must rather study and learn from them himself. But God has, as a matter of fact, manifested Himself upon the field of history and linked together by both natural religion and revelation those things that are called phenomena. He has shown us, for instance, what we could never have guessed for ourselves, that Himself is really and truly as much the Father of our neighbor as of ourself, that He has made us of one blood with men of other nations than our own, and most marvelous of all, that our hunger for justice can only be satisfied by Himself, who is Justice. Certainly the Christian Religion meets our aspirations, but in every point it also transcends them; for the showing of this there was needed the Incarnate Life, the Cross, the Resurrection, the Catholic Church and the sacraments.

These things then are not within the natural knowledge even of children. These enormous events, prophets and kings still desire to see before they believe, can certainly be brought within the grasp of children’s faith, yet they must be brought before they can be grasped. The child who knows, as older folks do not know, the Light that enlightens every man, does not know, unless he is told that this Light was at last set in a lantern and shone among men, outwardly as well as inwardly, a light to their paths as well as a lamp to their feet.

And for this tremendous work – the teaching to children of the greatest things in this world and the next – there is needed in the teacher all that is meant by the words “an intelligent love of children." He must understand them or he cannot teach; and he must love them or he cannot persuade.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Learning about Ancient Rome: "Gladiators"

"They fought with sword

And spear and net.

The watching crowd

Would cheer and bet.

They fought wild beasts;

They fought each other;

They'd fight a friend;

They'd fight a brother.

Their lives were hard,

And often short.

They spilled their blood,

And called it sport.

They fought with skill

Till their last breath,

Because they fought

Until the death."