Sunday, July 27, 2014

River Weaving by John

This is John.

He is:  an artist, a professor, the dean of a department at a university in Iowa, my husband's cousin.

This is his art display called "River Weaving" in the I & M Canal in our area.  

He gave a presentation today and we went out on this beautiful day to enjoy his art as well as the gorgeous weather that God had provided for the occasion.

Here is my gang:

And this is a luna moth.  Apparently these aren't that easy to find as they only live a few days.  They have no mouth so they cannot eat and therefore live only long enough to mate.  God sure makes some incredible creatures!

While I may have a hard time really enjoying modern art, I did enjoy this display as well as the pleasant afternoon.  Hope you had a good one, too.

God Bless!

Friday, July 25, 2014

7 Quick Takes about a boy, a girl and a homeschooling conference

I'm off with my load of books to the used book sale at the IHM conference this weekend.  I decided to weed through my books and get rid of books that are from the "early years" or books we haven't ever looked at.  I'm hoping to score some good books at the sale, too.  You know, now that I have room on my shelves.

This young man is always asking me if he can concoct something in the kitchen.  Problem is, he's never really sure what he wants to do.  Today's creation was milk and ice cream mixed with the hand blender.  I don't know, there's something about letting a 9 year old loose in my kitchen that is just hard for me to do!  This adventure, thankfully, was short and sweet and didn't taste that bad.

9 yo boy vs mosquito:  I think the mosquito won!  (we think it must have been in his bedroom because this is how he woke up!!)

A rare day at home for Ms 22 yo.  Crafting, coffee, Batman and ice cream - this girl has her priorities straight!

I have a plan for our upcoming school year and I'm excited about it.  The two high schoolers will be doing their high school stuff, but the two littlest (4th and 6th) will still be working with me.  I've come up with a looping schedule for some subjects and I'll detail it out for y'all in the coming weeks.

I've said it before and I'll say it again, "Math, you are the bane of my existence!"  I'm off to the conference to check out Teaching Textbooks - Algebra for the two in high school.  Ms 15 yo doesn't do well with Fred and Mr 13 yo did Beginning Algebra but isn't quite ready to move on so I'm hoping this program will work for the both of them.  If anyone would like to let me know what they think of TT (good or bad) that would be great!

The weather has been absolutely gorgeous.  The temps are perfect, the humidity is non-existent (if that's possible!) and it really does energize me!  Here's to a beautiful summer after such a long and trying winter.  Have a great weekend everyone.  Hope there's sunshine where you are.

God Bless! 
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Theme Thursday - Trails

This week's theme is trails, and while I haven't been on any exciting trails yet this year, I have some nice pictures from a short trip my hubby and I took last October in Wisconsin.  Unfortunately the trip was cut short, but the time we had there was beautiful.

Join in over at Clan Donaldson for more Trail pictures!.

 God Bless!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A Youthful Bonfire

A few weeks ago, Ms 18 yo, my first social butterfly, decided she wanted to throw a summer bonfire party (apple doesn't fall far from the tree, no siree).  Unfortunately for her, she ended up picking the hottest and most humid day of the year thus-far.  Oh well, it didn't seem to deter the guests and I could go inside where the a/c was keeping things much more reasonable, so it seems things were good all around.

 While there isn't a raging fire at this point, I'd like to point out the mutli-tasking effort put on by our couches.  These were two of the couches that had recently gotten ousted from our home and had been in the garage awaiting their final destination - either the end of the driveway with a big FREE sign on them, in the burn pile (not my first choice) or crushed by my hubby and his skid-loader and put in a dumpster.

When we were planning the logistics of this event, Ms 18 yo and I had a revelation:  Why not take our couches-in-waiting and put them on the driveway for bonfire seating??!!  What a great idea, and everyone seems to agree!

So the merriment is still going on as I telling when it will end.  My eyes will droop, but a good mother waits till all the guests are gone before going to bed, doesn't she?  I guess my fear is that I'll get in my jammies and fall asleep and then someone will need something.  Oh well, here's one last photo of the fire to send you on your way. 

Have a good night :) 

Update:  They put the couches back in the garage, got all the food put away, the last people got in their cars and within five minutes (about midnight) the skies let loose and the rain came down!

God Bless!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Summer Daybook

Thankful For:

* A busy weekend, for sure!  On Saturday, the girls and I readied the house to host a bridal shower for a friend's son and his fiance.  It was very providential that we did this because a few weeks ago, their front yard got hit by a tornado and there are still tree parts all over the yard.  A great time was had by all.

* While we were partying, the boys were out splitting more logs.  I am so thankful for the stash we have right now.  Hopefully it will be burnable by this winter, but that remains to be seen as it is all still very wet wood.

* In between all of this activity, we had my mom and dad over for lunch to celebrate my mom's birthday earlier this week.  She had that nasty upper respiratory infection that's been going around and was finally feeling better, so we fired up the grill and had some burgers and sang our lovely rendition of "Happy Birthday" around a pineapple upside down cake.

In the Rehab Department:

I realized I never put up pics of the desk Ms 15 yo and I painted last week.  Here are the before:

We realized that my hubby built this for me 21 years ago.  That was the last time it was painted, too!  Bye bye 21 years of grime and grit!  Here are the after:

We haven't had time to straighten out the drawers, and realistically, it's probably something we'll never get around too.  We're happy with them in spite of their crookedness (notice the Tardis blue accents)!

Next up:

An end table we found at a garage sale this past week!  This will be the last piece in "the new room"

This Week:

We have our homeschool conference next weekend so my goal is to have my used books ready to bring to the used book sale as well as to have an idea of what direction we're headed for the school year.  My biggest dilemma is math for my two high schoolers.  One doesn't get along with Fred and the other did the  Fred's Beginning Algebra but isn't quite ready for Advanced Algebra so I'm on the lookout for something that will work for the both of them.


I finally finished the Fulton Sheen autobiography and just purchased "Praying to God as a Friend" by St. Alphonsus Liguori.  Looks like a good one!  And really, it was $.99 for my Kindle!  How can you beat that?  Well, I suppose free would beat that, but this was pretty close.

I also picked up my book by Dr. Robert DeMaria called "Dr. Bob's Drugless Guide to Balancing Female Hormones" because, well let's just say, we have a lot of female hormones around here that could use some balancing. :)

Praying For:

* Discernment in a lot of issues, nothing too major though.

* For conversion of hearts so there might be peace in our world.

* For Grace, Anna, Courtney and Baby Chiara.

Outside my Window:

The sun is starting to set and it's not too hot so it should be another great night of sleeping.  Hope you have a great evening!

God Bless!


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Rosaries and Holy Cards and Mess, Oh My!

Ms 15 yo and I have been putting the finishing touches on "the room" when I came upon this mess and felt it was time that I at least TRY to deal with it:

That is our tangle of rosaries and they have been jumbling around in that basket for the past 10 years or so.  For years I've dreamed of some hanging kind of thing somewhere in the house to keep them organized.  That never happened; it was just easier to untangle them once or twice a year and carry the basket from room to room.  Now we live in a house where we can't put nails in the walls because of the plaster so I'm out of luck for anything hanging.

Then we encountered this:

 Holy cards galore; stuffed in this small, heart shaped glass thing.  Really?  Why did I ever think that rectangular cards would fit easily into a heart shaped container?  

Not knowing what to do, I put out a plea on facebook to a mom's group I'm part of.  Most of the rosary solutions involved hanging something, so I'm still out of luck there, but I did go out today and find a nice small basket that goes with the decor to put all those holy cards in.  Much nicer!

We tidied up the family altar a bit

 Bought some new pillows

and found a nice basket for ALL of the piano music we have.  Unfortunately out of 7 kids, only 2 can play, so based on the amount of music we have in this house, I told the 2 girls that I want to hear A LOT more playing going on.

I pretty happy with how this room turned out and we had so much fun doing it.  We finished repainting a desk (more on that tomorrow) and now I think we can retire our paint brushes for the time being and focus on tidying up last year's school work and planning for the coming year.  Ugh, really?  Yep, I guess it's that time.

If you have any ideas for all those rosaries that don't involve hanging anything, I'd love to hear them!

Also, there's only TWO more days left to buy "A Plan for Joy In the Home" at the sale price :)

God Bless!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

A Summer Daybook

Thankful For:

* A great time with fellow homeschooling moms on Saturday.  There were two talks (myself and the pastor of the church we were at), yummy food, good conversations, door prizes and even a massage and manicure if you wanted one.  What a great way to spend a rainy day.

* A very low-key Sunday. Mass and, well, that's about it.  It was Ms 11 yo's Baptismal feast day so we built a fire in the pit outside and had smores while it drizzled.

* Just enough money saved up to fix the a/c and a few other problems on our van.  It really is just too hard to drive a 15 passenger van without air conditioning.  The poor people two rows back come out with a red face even after a 5 minute drive.  Glad we finally found a good mechanic who is very reasonable.

* A busy, but fun, day on Friday.  The kids performed a short version of the "Prince and the Pauper" with their theater group for us in the afternoon.  It was very good improv theater :).  Then I hightailed it over to my cousin's bridal shower where I spent a nice evening outdoors with my aunts and cousins and had a few good laughs.

Outside My Window:

It is dark and my neighbor is burning his garbage.  Every Sunday night, just like clockwork.  Ah, the smell of burning plastic in the evening!

This Week:

* Ms 15 yo and I are tackling another project this week.  This time we will be repainting a big desk that my husband built for me back when our first daughter was still a toddler.  This desk is SOLID, but it has a big desk top and hold lots of stuff.  All it needs is a fresh coat of paint.  We just have to have it done and back in place before the weekend because I'm hosting a shower here on Saturday!  

* Of course that means that besides painting, there's cleaning to be done. Yippee!!

* Ms 22 yo comes back from her trip to see her boyfriend.  Happy for us, sad for them.

*  Will there be swimming in the forecast?  I sure hope so!

What I'm Reading:

I am almost done with that Fulton Sheen autobiography.  I'll have to work on finishing that up this week.

Last week I purchased "Praying to God as a Friend" by St. Alphonsus Liguori for a whopping $.99 for my Kindle.  I'm looking forward to getting started on that one.

Praying for:

My niece, the niece of a friend, the unborn baby of a friend of mine who really needs a miracle to survive.  Please pray through the intercession Blessed Chiara for her healing.


Shameless self promotion throne in here :)  Don't forget that "A Plan for Joy in the Home" is on sale this week through Friday!


 God Bless!

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