Saturday, December 27, 2014

On the third day of Christmas

We awoke to snow and it is still coming down in fine, fat flakes. The kids and I made another snowman, turned the slide into a sled, shoveled the sidewalk (twice, so far) and took a walk into the village to buy some groceries.

I had a playlist in my head as we walked. "My favorite things" from The Sound of Music as the snowflakes stayed on my nose and eyelashes. "Winter Wonderland" as we walked along the streets, passing other people bundled up, the buildings and trees decorated with a layer of fresh white snow.

As much as I have an aversion to the cold, I must admit the beauty of the morning lifted my spirits. So did my kids, running ahead to make snowballs and hide around a corner to try and ambush their mother. Trailing behind to notice the little things only kids notice.

Now I am home in my cozy pink house, my family around me. I am so grateful for all the blessings God has seen fit to bestow upon me. I am thankful for snowy days that lend themselves to card games, hot chocolate, or maybe a movie marathon.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas....

...from our family to yours!

We had a friend take some photos in front of the tree at the chapel this evening after Mass. Why, you ask? Well my friend, our Christmas tree cannot even be catagorized as a "Charlie Brown" tree. Nope. That would be too nice a description. Tony affectionately dubbed it the "mutated Chernobyl tree". That is pretty darn accurate. I won't even post a picture. It is that sad.

May your Christmas be filled with joy and love!

Thursday, December 18, 2014


Heard recently around here:

Therese at the dinner table: Mom? Can I switch places with Anna tomorrow night?

Me: Why?

Therese: So you can look into my beautiful brown eyes.

Peter snuck some chocolate, the last piece to be precise. Anna saw him and exclaimed, "Hey! I want some of that!" Peter turned around and said, "You wouldn't like it," and promptly shoved the chocolate in his mouth...and ran.

Monday, December 8, 2014

On this day

You can make plans, but sometimes God changes those plans. I planned for our family to have a quiet little Advent. We pulled out the Nativity sets, the advent wreath (we actually even had new candles!), our book we read to the kids and the Holy Heroes Advent Adventure books. I planned to visit some Christmas markets for our first Christmas in Germany.

Then all of a sudden we were on a plane, flying to be with my husband's family as we say good-bye to my mother in law.

This morning, as we discussed where to go for Mass for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, I realized that the Basilica of the national shrine of the Immaculate Conception was right here! Oh how amazingly beautiful it was! One archbishop, two bishops, and so many priests! We saw nuns from three different orders. We recognized the white sari with blue stripes of the Missionaries of Charity of Blessed Mother Teresa. Oh, and the man who sat down next to us was from Germany! He prayed all the prayers in German and I realized that the language I found so harsh nine months ago sounded so meloldic to me this morning.

Peter and Therese slept through the Mass, but woke up as we were looking at the little chapels dedicated to all the different names that Mary is known by. Peter was only looking for one thing: the tabernacle. When we came to the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, he was so happy.

I have been preparing to consecrate myself to Jesus through Mary on the Feast of Our Lady of Guadelupe. The Archbishop's sermon really spoke to me and helped me feel more ready to make the consecration.

Isn't it amazing how God puts us exactly where we need to be? We can plan, but in the end, we just need to trust that God's plan is perfect and embrace it.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Prayer Request

Please pray for the repose of the soul of my mother-in-law, Eileen, who died early this morning. She was a wonderful woman, strong in her faith. I will miss her weekly letters to us, the comic page she saved for the kids, the little surprise packages that would show up "just because". She will be dearly missed and fondly remembered.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

winter wonderland daybook

outside my window...

We awoke to the first snow of the season. I must admit even I had that magical feeling of wonder and awe as I gazed out the window, flakes still falling in the early morning light. I love the quiet of a snow, how it seems to muffle out all the noise and chaos, and leave a white blanket of calm over all it covers.

I am thinking about...

how I love homeschooling, so that we can take the morning to make a snowman when the snow is the perfect packing kind of snow.

the transformation as each child came drowsily down the stairs and then immediately became a ball of energy upon looking out the window.

the fun of bundling up and heading out to make a snowman. He may have already fallen over, but we enjoyed rolling the snow, laughing, scouring the yard to make his features.

the reality that we still do have to do schoolwork, but for now, I will sip my coffee and pretend that we don't.

I am reading...

"33 Days to Morning Glory" for me.

"Destination: Bethlehem" to the kids. (An Advent tradition)

I am creating...

a bunny for Jack, since he had on his Christmas list "a nitid buney".

a sweater for Therese. I am using Ginny's Sunday Sweater pattern. I love the pattern. I do not like the yarn, but it was free and Therese likes the color, so I will use it.

 a color matching game for Peter. It is a pinwheel quilt square with 8 different colors and 8 clothespins painted with matching colors. I am hoping for a quiet game to keep him occupied while we work at the school table.

in the kitchen...

I thrive on a weekly menu, and I do not have one this week. I feel frustrated every time I open the fridge. Tony's car broke down and somehow that led to no menu.  Don't ask me how those two things are related, they just are.

I am praying for...

Sophie, who had surgery to repair her ACL yesterday.

All those on my list of intentions.

For my mother-in-law, whose health is deteriorating.

some pictures to share...

they were already whispering about what they could possibly do out there.

Doubting whether this is such a good idea.

a work in progress

They named him "Frenchie".

note Frenchie's mustache


He decided: Not a fan of the snow!