Saturday, April 27, 2013

Rite of passage

Just shy of 18, Olivia is at the end of one journey and at the beginning of the next. In the following weeks, she will be confirmed and graduated. Tonight she is at her senior prom. In the fall, as we head to Germany, she will remain here and start her college experience. She is perched, ready to fly from the nest and test her wings. Letting her soar, I hold my breath and let her go and grasp my rosary and pray.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Anna is in the kitchen

When ordering Anna's books last fall, I bought "Tea and Cake with the Saints". We had not even looked at it until yesterday, when it caught Anna's eye on the shelf. It sparked an interest in her to cook something for us, but I had a busy day and kept putting off her requests to make a treat.

As I finished up in the kitchen last night, I noticed that Anna had laid open the book to a recipe that she wanted to make for us this morning for breakfast. I smiled at her sweet enthusiasm. This morning, among the chaos that is our family, she and I worked around all that and I gently guided her as she put some of this and a little of that in the bowl. She did a wonderful job and breakfast was "scrumptious" as Jack likes to say.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Babies and Cornbread

What a mess, yet I still don't think it holds a candle to Therese and her pasta.

"What? What's wrong?"

"Oh, that. Yeah, I dropped a little bit."

"Here. Let me hold that camera while you sweep that up."

"Really, Mom, it's not so bad."

"You don't believe me?"

"Ain't I a stinker?"

"Don't sweat the small stuff, Mom. And all those crumbs are small."

"Lunch was fun!"

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Butterfly Hunting

Well, at least we can say we did science today.

This morning, we went to the orthopedic surgeon and scheduled Peter's foot surgery for May 15. Please keep him in your prayers. He will have to wear a full cast on his leg for a month after the surgery, which should be very interesting. Then I took advantage of a napping baby and ran around like a mad woman picking up piles of stuff. The house is so disorganized right now and I don't function well amongst chaos. It is still messy, but an improvement nonetheless.

And just how did we fit science into our day? While I was picking up, I let the kids play outside. They have been on the lookout for butterflies ever since we went to San Diego's Safari Zoo. There was a butterfly exhibit that really impressed them. It was pretty amazing. For only $15, you could get your own butterfly net at the zoo. Or, you can get one for each kid in the dollar bin at Target. Which is what we did. The quest for catching a butterfly had been unsuccessful until today. I spotted one in our backyard and told the kids to be gentle. Fifteen minutes later, they had caught one! They were so worried that they had injured it since it just sat there on the porch. After taking a few pictures, I coaxed it onto my finger and it fluttered onto Jack's shirt. He was a little frightened and excited all at the same time. Oh how the kids cheered when they saw the butterfly was not hurt. I snapped one more picture and then the butterfly left our back yard and landed safely in the neighbors flowering bushes. We came inside and looked up what kind of butterfly we had caught. He was a male Eastern Tiger Swallowtail. And that, my friends, would be science class for today.

Monday, April 8, 2013

San Diego- There and Back

After 6 long hours in the van, trying in vain to get to the airport at the dizzying speed of 15 mph on I-95, we missed our flight. I thought I would be more upset and freaked out, but really, what can you do except get a hotel room and wait til the morning and hope you can get on the next flight?

The kids were clearly inconsolable.

The next day, we made it to San Diego, although on different flights. Tony and Jack arrived just as I picked up the rental van. This is not the rental van.  I just thought it was cool.

Our second view of the Pacific Ocean. This was near the house where my parents and sisters stayed. We had our own little cottage on the Navy Base on Coronado.

Olivia enjoying the beach.

Did I mention we came all this way for my sister's wedding? She was one of the loveliest brides and I am happy to welcome Jon into our family. Unfortunately, I have no pictures of the bride and groom thanks to a grumpy baby.

The sweet cousins as flower girls. Mind you, at this point in the wedding ceremony, someone whose name rhymes with pumpkin eater decided to get very fussy and I had to leave. One of my big girls took some pictures for me.

Jack was one of the ring bearers.

This is at the wild animal park that is part of the San Diego Zoo. How different the mountains and plant life are from the east coast!

I couldn't resist getting a picture of this mama and baby.

Tony kept zinging by all the sights. That blur out the window is a vineyard. He went by the orange trees so fast that I was still trying to find the camera.

On the beaches of Coronado.

Just to the right of that cliff is the cottage where we were staying. This is the view from the Hotel Del Coronado.

On Saturday, we went to Mass at the Mission Basilica San Diego de Alcala. Wow.

These clouds seemed to capture the dreamlike adventure we had this past week.