Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy All Hallows' Eve!

~ Our 2010 Saint-O-Lanterns ~

A Rose, Symbol of St. Therese
by Twinkle Toes and Mom

St. George the Dragon Slayer
by Rascal and Daddy

IHS - In Hoc Signo Vinces
which means: By this sign you conquer
(a symbol for the Society of Jesus, including St. Isaac Jogues)
by Captain

In honor of all the Holy Innocents 
and our little Gabriel 
(who was born into heaven 2 years ago this Thanksgiving)
by Chiquita and Mom

To see more Saint-O-Lanterns scroll through

Friday, October 29, 2010

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, visit Soulemama to leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Ink Garden of Brother Theophane

"In the mountains of Mourne, up twisted old bends, 
past blackberry brambles and ancient wood glens, 
there stood a tall tower - a circle of stone-
where holy men lived, wearing simple brown robes,
filling simple brown books, eating simple brown bread,
and saying their prayers by their simple brown beds.
They all looked alike, they all seemed the same,
except for the brother they called Theophane."

A couple weeks ago, my husband and I were browsing through a gift shop after we attended a Pride & Prejudice play for our anniversary. We ran across a picture book by C.M. Millen, The Ink Garden of Brother Theophane.  I hadn't heard of it before so I opened the cover to see when it was published, and sure enough it was only recently published this past July! 

It is absolutely lovely!   

The story is about the youngest monk, Brother Theophane, who lives in a small medieval Irish monastery where the monks work quietly side by side, copying manuscripts with plain brown ink.   Brother Theophane is easily distracted by the beauty of the world outside his window that he is sent outside to work:  boiling bark to make ink.   Inspired by the stains from the blackberries, he starts experimenting with berries, roots, twigs and leaves to make various colors of ink!  Soon the monks were using the colorful ink for their manuscripts.

"Heavenly hues now covered their pages
and filled their bright books with colorful phrases."

The book is delightful to read and the detailed illustrations are beautiful.  

I purchased this book to give to one of my children on the Feast of St. Nicholas this year (one of our family traditions is to give each of our children a new christmas and/or saint books on this feast), but let's just see if I can keep it packed away that long!  I am dying to read it to my little ones...

P.S.  Amazon sells this great picture book for much less than I paid at the bookstore! Even less if you buy a used copy... Either way, it is totally worth adding to your home library! 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday

We are all so excited that the Our Lady of Guadalupe costume that Grandma made for Chiquita back in 2006 fits Rose this year!!   Doesn't she look so cute!?!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

He has a point...

Mom:  Okay boys, your dictation sentence is from Mr. Revere and I.  This is what Scheherazade says, after all her adventures.

"How times and fortunes do change!  My circumstances are most comfortable, my duties almost none."

Hmmm... I guess I could say the same thing, now that we have our new kitchen and dishwasher!

Captain:  Well, it certainly cost a fortune!

"Upon Saint Crispin's Day"

You can find the delicious recipe for St. Crispin's Apple Crisp at Catholic Cuisine!

Inspired by the Battle of Agincourt, which took place on St. Crispin's Day in 1415,  and the famous St. Crispin's Day Speech, we also colored a picture from one of our History supplements for this year: Life in a Medieval Castle and Village Coloring Book.

"Thank you Miss Charlotte!" 

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Pictures from the Pumpkin Patch ~ 2010

~ Family ~ 

~ Pony Rides ~

~ Haystack ~

~ Corn Maze ~ 

~ Shooting Gallery ~

~ Picking Pumpkins in the Patch ~ 

*Thank you Mary for taking some of these pictures! 

All Ready for the Pumpkin Patch...

We had such a great time yesterday afternoon... 
I'll be back with more pictures soon! 

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Favorite Catholic Calendars

I am often asked how I keep track of the upcoming feast days, so I thought I would share with you all my favorite calendar and daily planner.

My mother-in-law has been giving Hubby & I each a copy of the Saints Calendar & Daily Planner published by Tan for years now and we love it!

Here is the description:

A great aid to sanctify each day! Covers 16 months beginning September 2010. 71 fascinating illustrations and mini biographies - one for every week. Contains both the Ordinary (Novus Ordo) and the Extraordinary (Tridentine) liturgical year,feastdays and Sundays, and historical feasts (such as Our Lady of the Angels, St Philomena, St Dismas the Good Thief). Includes Catholic information such as the days of fast and abstinence, Ember Days and vigils. Alphabetical list of over 700 Patron Saints. With more room to write, monthly planner pages and the same easy to use 5 1/2" x 8  1/2" size.

My other favorite calendar is the Catholic Calendar from Saints Galore Catholic Publishing.   (While you are there, check out all their other beautiful products!)  However, when Hubby saw the gorgeous calendar sitting on my desk last January, he somehow convinced me to let him have it for his office...  By that point, it had sold out for the year, so this year I ordered two! :-)

Here is the description for the Catholic Calendar:

This beautiful, quality-USA-made, large 12" X 11" calendar is dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. It follows the liturgical year for both the Latin Tridentine (Extraordinary) and the Novus Ordo (Ordinary) forms of the Roman Rite of the Catholic Church. This calendar features traditional images, seen nowhere else, to honor each dedication of the month. It features the saint of the day, denotes the liturgical color of the day, gives reminders for novenas, includes quotes from the saints, and contains many beautiful and traditional prayers. There is also plenty of room for all your important messages. This calendar makes the perfect gift for anyone!

Not only are they beautiful and inspiring, I love that both of these calendars follow both the Extraordinary and Ordinary liturgical years.

If you have a favorite Catholic calendar, I'd love to hear about it!    

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

My Daybook :: Oct 20, 2010

Outside our window... the squirrels have been busy!  We've been enjoying watching them from the windows, in our new dining room, as they prepare for winter.

I am We are listening to... The Story of Bach. We are studying four composers this year, one each term, beginning with Bach.  It is playing on the laptop while the children complete a couple worksheets at the table and I work on this post at the counter.  Now that we have so much room in the kitchen and new dining area, we are rarely using our schoolroom.  

I am thinking... about my inbox and how I could possibly get so behind in responding over the past year(s).  I currently have just under 200 emails from the past 13 months which I "saved to respond to later."  At what point is it just too late to email back?? 

I am praying... for the soul of LTC Robert Balwin, his wife (my friend Danielle) and their four precious children.  Thank you to all of you that contributed to the Spiritual Bouquet for them.  Please continue to remember their family in your prayers.

I am thankful... that the construction is coming to an end.  I am finding it SO hard to keep up with school when the contractors, inspectors, or pretty much anyone, is here during school hours.

From the kitchen... creative cooking...  I've been postponing grocery shopping for a couple weeks now and am coming up with all sorts of interesting meals.  I'm hoping that I can make it till next week before I absolutely have to go to the store.   I just haven't had the time while Hubby has been home, or the energy to go with all six children.

From the learning rooms... It has been somewhat of a slow start this year, but we have been plugging away and, despite my lack of planning over the summer, everything seems to be falling into place.  I know many of you have emailed and are curious as to what we are using this year, so I will try and post more soon.   Real quick, my favorite change this year has been with English/Writing (this was a weak point for my boys on their testing last year).  We are now using Writing with Ease and First Language Lessons, in addition to Winston Grammar with Captain.

Living the Liturgical Year at Home... Now that we are finally able to sit down and eat all together once again, Hubby has resumed reading a little about the saint of the day each night at dinner.  The girls have completed their St. Therese Lap Books and the boys are just about finished with theirs.  We are also looking forward to our upcoming All Saints Party!

I am creating... plans for our first Little Flowers Meeting for the year, which will be at my home on Friday afternoon.

I am wearing... warm socks and slippers.  It is cold this morning!

I am reading... Small Steps for Catholic Moms (I finally have a copy and love it!)Smart Martha's Catholic Guide for Busy Moms, Island of the World, and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.  I am also reading quite a few books to the children:  Twelve Bright Trumpets and Founders of Freedom  each night after dinner for History; Exploring Creation With Botany (Young Explorers) for Science;  Paddle-to-the-Sea (Sandpiper Books) and G is for Granite: A New Hampshire Alphabet for Geography; and quite a few picture books about the Vikings (more History), various Saints, and Bach (Music) as well.  It has left little time for reading anything else, particularly blogs.

On my iTouch... Words with Friends!  Now you know the real reason that I haven't had much "extra" time for blogs, including my own!  ;)

Pondering these words... found in my new book yesterday afternoon, which had just been delivered while I was at the track exercising for the first time since my fall this summer and in desperate need of getting back into shape, when I opened it up to the page for October 19th:

"But truly, you cannot at first arrive at such consolations without struggle and labor that must precede.  Your old habits will somewhat forestall you, but better habits can overcome the old ones."  Thomas A Kempis

Our little Rose... is 10 Months old!   How did that happen so fast?!?  She has been a bit cranky this week, but, if you look close, you can see a third bottom tooth breaking through.  Poor baby!

I purchased her cute head wrap when it was offered at Kid Steals last month!
  Isn't it cute?!?  It is made by Ruby Love Fashions

Noticing that... our little Rose had another little tooth break through on the bottom yesterday, which explains her recent crankiness.  Poor thing!

One of my favorite things... my dishwasher!!! I am still learning how to use it, and already ruined my favorite bibs (I picked up more asap!), but even still, I LOVE it!!  (Any tips on soaps, etc?  This is all so new to me!) 

A few plans for the week:

Monday ::  My Dad & Brother were here finishing up most of the Electrical and we got the final Electrical Inspection!

Here is my Monday Morning Facebook status for your entertainment:   ;) 

Next time, Brian (aka my brother), you might want to make sure that no one is in the shower, with their hair completely lathered up with shampoo, before cutting the power to the water. There is nothing like a brain freeze, from the ice cold water that your husband finds in the garage and pours over your head to attempt to get the soap out, to start the week!

Yes, Monday was a long day... 

Tuesday ::  Meet sister (home for Fall Break!) and sister-on-law at the track to walk.   Rose enjoyed "visiting" with her little cousin!   Also, stopped by library to pick up our books on hold.

Wednesday :: Final Building Inspection.  (We are getting closer to being completely finished!)

Thursday ::  Cabinet Maker coming back to install knobs and pulls. (Yay!)  Hopefully he will have the last couple shelves and the front for the bathroom cabinet, as well.

Friday ::  Mass and our first Little Flowers and Blue Knights Meetings for the Year

Saturday :: Trip to the Pumpkin Patch followed by an Ocktoberfest Dinner at our Church

Sunday :: Mass

Somewhere in there we need to squeeze a full week of school, planning for Little Flowers, and (hopefully!) Grocery Shopping! 

A Picture thought I am sharing:

Rose is getting a bit spoiled by her afternoon naps. 

She sure loves her big brother...  And he loves her just as much!