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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Party updates

Silly string, fashion show, confetti cake!

Bag game

We started the hour by hour bag game where every hour they search for a hidden bag: the first one contained a craft and second one beads for freeze dance competition. The next few bags will be bubble ball drop game, silly string party and a fashion show around the house! House is rocking!

Non alcoholic floats

The pajama gang is getting fueled up on ice cream and egg nog before they make their time capsule resolutions.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Rocking around the Clock

Ok so this was the theme we came up with for our New Years Eve slumber party. Julia helped me make the invites and we decided attire would consist of pjs all day long. I love thinking of themes for parties but I struggle with what to feed them? My mom suggested Fridays potato skins so we are going to try them. I also am letting kids experiment with ice cream and hot cocoa, egg nog, pop, and juice. I never let the kids drink this stuff so when I bought it you should have seen Emerson's eyes bug out! Good thing this is a once a year deal. We are buying a confetti cake as my baking pans are on vacation after the Christmas rush. For games we are playing find the alarm clock, and an hour by hour present hidden in bags. Each bag contains: party hats, balloons, blowers, silly string...all the necessary new years eve celebratory stuff. I also am having a fireworks stomp. It consists of bubble wrap placed all over floor. You basically let the kids go crazy jumping and popping and it sounds like fireworks. I haven't mentioned this one yet to Tony! Happy New Year Dear!
To wrap it up the girls are camping out until midnight watching A Dolphins Tale and waiting for the ball to drop. I am hoping to make it until midnight I never have as of so far but there is a first time for everything right?

Feast of the Holy Family

Today I awoke with the anxiety and magnitude of what the kids and I needed to accomplish. Then a little whisper reminded me that today the kids and I were making home altars for feast of the Holy Family. It settled my heart to reflect in that as opposed to the four stores we needed to stop at, the numerous things on my to do list ect. Focus on the positive that is my new mantra right? Once a year girls have made little prayer altars in their rooms and this year Blaise gets to join them. We centrally have always met at the dining room table for prayers but it is nice for them to have that quiet spot in their rooms they can flee to. I try to teach them one character quality about Mary and Joseph they can imitate and it isn't hard to come up with a long list of choices. Currently Julia has become fascinated by the lives of the saints and saint Joseph is one of them. I am giving her a book today called Practical Devotion to St. Joseph, which I believe was Tony's in college. My MIL may have sent it I can not recall but regardless I stumbled upon it and have secretly been hiding it for her. This year I plan on turning my grandmothers buffet server in to a year round home altar. The kids have been helpful in collecting prayer cards, vase for flowers, tea lights, and scripture books. I am on the hunt for some runners to match the colors of the liturgical season and we should be set. Today we will busily set up the altars and there is where I will find my daily peace.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, be the Heartbeat of our family; bless us and be with us always.

"Be still and know that I am God."
Luke 10:41-42

Thursday, December 29, 2011


Although he didn't want to...I told him it's for his kids. Here are daddy's resolutions.
1. Work out at the gym at least 5 days a week so I can fit into my high school jeans.
2. I won't steal the candy out of the prize buckets when the kids are sleeping.
3. Buy some new socks.
4. Join the men's group at church.
5. Take the girls out on a daddy daughter date once a month.
6. Take Blaise to some MSU games.

When it snows it blizzards

Ever hear the old expression when it rains it pours? Well I am using snow as my analogy as it has been snowing all day getting worse as my day has been getting worse! Started out good as we bundled up and jumped in van to go see Judi. Noticed few flakes! Noticed my van wouldn't start! Dead! Real bad timing as kiddies realize we are not going to farm! I call my hubby who tells me to use my phone app for free roadside assistance. I call and charming gentleman tells me for 65.00 smackeroonies he will come and give me a jump! I can not justify the expense so I said no! Meanwhile Julia informs me she feels sick and wants to go lay down. Whole time it is snowing harder and harder. My knight in shining armor pulls up in his hamstermobile and we sit there watching utube videos on how to jump start a van. When I finally get on the road two hours later I realize I am not feeling to peachy king myself and the roads are slick! Wanting to remain positive my oldest reminds me "when God closes one door He opens another "! I guess so and I will keep repeating that as I just discovered when we got home that I left the garage door open! Snow galore!


I have had an assortment of friends in my life and have lost touch with some but a few have remained. Once you have children you tend to gravitate towards others with kids. My mommy friends have become like family to me. One in particular is my dear friend Judi. We both homeschool and our daughters are around the same age. We naturally have a lot in common. She recently had surgery and is on the mend. We are going to see her today and help her out. When I was pregnant with Benedict she was instrumental in helping with my kids and cooking for us and just being a shoulder to cry on when hormones kicked up. She has a strong Catholic faith, is honest and trustworthy. I am so lucky to have met her. God really placed her family in our life at a time when we needed it. I saw a card once that said friends are the family members that complete us. In my case this is certainly true! Get well Judi and don't worry about a thing!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Early Bird Gets the Worm

A few have wondered why I would want to post my changes or resolutions for 2012? My dear sweet hubby even said some should be kept personal. I agree to a point. As a family we keep each other accountable and we encourage each other. I would be fake or hypocritical if I did not willingly list my own resolutions and hope that I would receive encouragement and motivation. I am doing them early as I expect by 2012 I will be in party mode as the girls are having an all night slumber party with pals. So here are mine:
1. In an effort to strengthen my relationship with God I want to attend one daily mass a week with the kids.
2. I want to spend more one on one time with each of my children as they have all expressed a desire to have my undivided attention.
3. I want to start a devotional with Tony.
4. It's been 10 years honey, let's go out on a date! Let's get that babysitter we always talk about and invest in our marriage! I love you!
5. I want to host a dinner party once a month for a family from our parish so we can really get to know them better and our kids can get to know them.
6. I am determined to get to Cleveland in 2012 to see my dear sweet friend Karen who I have not seen in what 20years?
7.I want to learn to knit or sew I can't decide which yet as the girls want me to do both!
8. I would like to learn how to cook a pot roast as I have never done that before.
9. I would like to get over my fear of hamsters. (that is for you Julia)
10. Finally and this is a hard one for me: I would love to focus more on the positive and avoid any negative that would tear our family dynamics down.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Out of the mouth of babes

Ok so I know Benedict is not talking YET but we all agree that if he could these would be his "changes" for 2012:
1. I would like to move from my liquid diet to something of substance, I tried to give you a hint when I grabbed my sock the other day and shoved it in my mouth.
2. I am going to try to speak more clearly as now when I make noise everyone starts making animal sounds at me and singing the abc song.
3. I hope to improve my speed of motion this year and actually make it to my target before someone picks me up and moves me away.
4. Hoping to get a new wardrobe soon as my crotch is hurting from those onesies my mom keeps snapping me into and really the hats?!? Gotta go!
5. I plan on meeting some new peeps and maybe inviting them to my crib!(sorry we HAD to add that one)
6. I have got to stop drooling it is starting to turn people off I think!

Honesty is best policy

Before I post Emerson's resolutions I want to mention that we have been drilling into her the importance of honesty. With that being said here is what she gave me this afternoon on a piece of paper:
1. Save up some money because I am going to be a banker and buy my own yellow lab.
2. Take tap dancing lessons because I am already good at ballet.
3. I want to go to Great Wolf Lodge again since that bucket doesn't scare me anymore.
4. I want to go to the zoo because my dad promised me last Summer and then forgot but I think he didn't want to go.
5. I need to learn my act of contrition because my mom said so.
6. I want to go on a sleepover to a friends house without Julia.
7. I want to do more work with my daddy because he pays more money then my mommy because well you know he works at a bank.

Double Digits means Double Duty

I, Julia, a 10 year old, do promise to accomplish the following in the new year:
1. Invest in a better hamster cage
2. Spend more time with my siblings.
3. Do more chores around the house
4. Approach math differently
5. Not sleep in until 9:30 am
6. Make even more new friends
7. Encourage mom that hamsters are totally awesome
But I am not changing who I am on the inside or my sense of style and creativity!

I resolve to...

My family is working on their resolutions or "changes" as my daddy calls them and these are mine:
1. Take swimming lessons
2. Have another Lego birthday party
3. Learn how to collect the money at church
4. Not be afraid to go in basement by myself
5. Learn how to tie my shoes
6. Go see grandma connell up north more because I like her food
7. Learn my prayers better
Blaise, 4 next month
The editor, whom shall remain anonymous, would like to suggest one: getting a regular haircut without a fuss!

Small Town Mentality

This blog was inspired by an email I had with my MIL! It got me thinking about the small town I live in. On more then one occasion Tony and I have discussed moving to a larger city. Then I start to think about all the reasons our family loves living here. You can shop downtown and people actually know you by name and when your kids were born. If you go into the local grocery store they actually offer to take your groceries out to your car for you. The librarian will order books based on what your kids like just because. Neighbors will look out for you and your kids especially if it looks like your 3 year old is getting into mischief. I can go from point a to point b in less than 5 minutes with no traffic. People still have block parties around here. You can still find a friendly stranger to talk to at the park and not have to worry if they are a creep. (although I am still cautious) I never thought I would like living in a small town but having children now and seeing them enjoy the benefits of a small town community, I don't think I could ever leave!

Monday, December 26, 2011


I am not above admitting when I am wrong or that I have made a mistake! Well, I made a mistake! In my rush to get all the "stuff" put away I failed to remember the importance of leaving out the nativity and tree. Thankfully I have my dear mother in law to compassionately remind me the celebrating has just begun! The kids were thrilled to hear that some of the decor was coming back out of storage! It led to a great conversation between Tony and I as we begin to discuss sone of the changes in our family effective 2012. Remember only a few days left before people talk about resolutions. I have done them, Tony has made them in the past...we kept some and left others by wayside. This year instead of resolutions we are "adding" some new traditions to our family. Things to bring ourselves closer to each other, our faith and our community. I don't want to spill the beans yet as the girls are still working on their portion of our new family list. Thanks and love to my MIL for pointing out my oversight!

Feast Day

Ok we did it the decor is put away and the house is back in order but do we stop thinking about what Christmas is all about? No as I explained to the kids we have a few more special days to celebrate! One being today as it is my nephews feast day! St. Steven was the first martyr and known for distributing food to the poor. Steven you not only were named after a great guy (your daddy) but an awesome saint! Love you bunches and we can not wait to meet you! Hope your first Christmas was blessed!


Although within our faith we celebrate up until the epiphany which is after January 1, from the time I was little the day after Christmas is when the decorations are taken down and put away. This is one thing I have held onto out of convenience. I don't always have help putting everything away but thanks to a banking holiday Tony is home for one more day! We started early in the morning in hopes of having our afternoon free. I am still in midst of ornaments and three trees that need to come down but I noticed one small thing...call it a gem that I am tickled to death about! I inherited all of my grandmas ornaments from her tree before she was moved and one of them appears to be from Florence, Italy. It is a bulb with a picture of the Madonna on it. I never noticed it before as the kids helped put up all her ornaments. I dread putting it all away but I do like having the house back in order before the New Year. By the way I am already talking to the kids about 2012 and some new resolutions and the excitement is brewing! Stay tuned!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Favorite moments

The kids are in bed before 8! I had to sit down and take a minute to jot down a few of my favorite memories of today. Being that this is Benedict's first Christmas I want him to know I took special note of him. He loved the wrapping paper and even tore into his little present from Blaise. I loved how the kids seem so thankful and satisfied for the gifts, even though it was minor in compared to most. I loved the fact that my friend could text me Merry Christmas in spite of how busy she was today as well! I loved it when we all sat down to dinner and the kids said this was the best Christmas ever! I loved it that I was still in my pjs at 5pm and it didn't matter. I loved hearing my husband sing the loudest happy birthday to Jesus without shame. I will never forget the calm and peace of today. Benedict you had a wonderful first Christmas and many more just like this one to come!

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Julia, Emerson and Blaise made their cakes!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas! Tony and I are making breakfast for the kids (homemade cinnamon rolls, eggs, juice, toast and sweet breads) then we are going to hang out in our pjs, drink some delicious coffee compliments of the Lindsay family! The kids have some new games and puzzles to play and we always watch the Nativity movie. Later on I am making fresh salmon and rolls and we are going to continue doing next to nothing except hang out together and chill! This is where we make the best memories together. The kids will bake a birthday cake for Jesus and we will sing happy birthday to Him. I am loving vicariously living thru my kids as we celebrate the real reason of the season!

Children Mass

Not to appear bias all the children did marvelous! Not a dry eye in the church!
But, I must brag for one moment...when we arrived we were informed that julia's drawing was chosen for the cover of the bulletin! It was beautiful and precious to see the children do the nativity story. Blaise was a bit shy at first and shed a few tears but in the end he stuck it out and even smiled and gave us the thumbs up thru out the mass. As we drove home the kids were all a buzz at how much fun it was and how they couldn't wait until next year to do it all again.