Sunday, February 28, 2010

we are so ready for spring

Before and after pictures of the front porch.

We repaired the swing, washed all the sidewalk chalk off the stairs and planters (and created a new rule regarding chalk usage), rinsed the rockers, and greened things up a bit with geraniums, a Boston fern, and gerbera daisies. Sadly, within a month or so, the town will be under a yellow layer of pollen, but a quick little wash down and all is good again.

puzzle piece

This song is pretty special to King and I right now.

product plug

My sister has used Pantene for some time. Her hair always looks great and smells great. So, tired of my stupid Suave, which has started making my "fine" hair limp, I decided to try something new. Can I just say...

Pantene Pro V
Volume Shampoo
ps - do you shampoo once, or do you lather, rinse, and repeat like the directions say to do?

Saturday, February 27, 2010

lenten journey

scourging - check
crown of thorns - check
falling for the first time - check

Friday, February 26, 2010

let it be known

I serve an awesome God!

and there was much rejoicing... well, after the gnashing of teeth

Due in part because I needed to, but fueled by the overwhelming desire to control it... after all, I don't have control over Any. Thing. Else. in my life right now... I cleaned out my closet and emptied two plastic bins which were crammed full of clothes.

There were seven plastic garbage bags in all, stuffed full of clothes that I am not going to get back into anytime soon (both are embarrassing facts). But, honestly, why can't someone wear them now rather than me h..h..h..hoarding them? I mean, who knows if the clothes will even be in style then?

I gotta tell you, even though it was tough, the therapeutic effects of de-cluttering is great!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

only one week in? let me out!!!!

OK people... is Lent going extremely slow for any of the rest of you? I mean, as I type this, we are only 1 week + 1 day into it and it seems like next week needs to be Holy Week. Whew! It has been ONE. LONG. HELLACIOUS. WEEK.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

comfort food

I am generally not one of those cooks that follows a recipe. More often than not, I have to be "inspired" by something lurking in the fridge or freezer. It's really too bad for my family for lots of reasons. Since cooking is more of a creative thing, I generally don't make the same thing twice. (Oh, sure it would be easy to have every Tuesday be spaghetti night, but where's the creativity?!?)
That being said, I must have put these flavors together before because it tastes just as comfortable as sitting on the couch in your favorite jammies wrapped up in your softest blanket on a Saturday morning.. (and while we're at it, let's go ahead and fantasize that the kids are all sleeping late, shall we?!)
Let's call it:
Serene Queen Florentine

You will notice that we buy the Sam's size of everything. Keep in mind that we are feeding 7 people, one of which is a teenage boy - need I say more? I will give the proportions I used, though the recipe is so damn easy, you can increase or decrease the servings handily.
  • cook rice (3 c water 1 1/2 c rice 3 T butter)
  • dice the baked chicken into bite sized pieces
  • cube 8 oz cream cheese (that is one package for normal people)
  • add 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • pour in 2 c half n half (or milk)
  • 1 pkg thawed spinach
  • add herbs/spices to taste (basil & oregano or just plain ol' salt & white pepper)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

a clean surface

Did you just hear that sound? It was the collective sigh of our family as I sewed the last stitch on the last Munchkin costume. My schedule had me finishing up earlier in the week, but God had other plans. I couldn't bear to take a before picture... but anyone who saw it can vouch for the fact that it was piled nearly a foot tall with a bunch of crapola: tissue from dress patterns, spools of thread of every color of the "over the rainbow", papers that have yet to be gone through, kid art, crayons, pencils from people who do their homework but never seem to put the writing tools away, the list goes on ad nauseum.

So, here is a picture of our needing to be replaced but well-loved dining room table (quick! while the kids are sleeping) - all cleaned off.

And, might I mention that those beautiful roses have an even more beautiful fragrance?

praying for protection

As a younger person, I never put much into the concept of spiritual battle.
Naive. Fool.
We will now be praying this prayer each and every morning together as a family.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

talk amongst yourselves

Mike Myers used to do a skit on Saturday Night Live called Coffee Talk With Linda Richman. If you are too young to remember, see if they have anything on youtube. Funny stuff.

Each episode, he'd give a silly, and ironic discussion topic such as
  • The Peanut is neither a pea nor a nut. Discuss!
  • The Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire. Discuss.
  • Duran Duran is neither a Duran nor a Duran. Discuss.
  • The Thighmaster is neither a thigh nor a master. Discuss.
  • Rhode Island is neither a road nor an island. Discuss.

You get the picture.

So, in some way when I think of the term brutal honesty, I have an inner chuckle thinking of crazy Mike Myers. The fact remains, brutal honesty is both brutal and honest. I'm a little verklempt, talk amongst yourselves.

Friday, February 19, 2010

the luckiest girl in the house

King and number 3 special date night: Father/Daughter Dance

To surprise her, while she was at school I loaded the little ones in the car and went to a local department store to find her the perfect dress and the perfect shoes. When she got home, she was so excited. The dress looked perfect on her. She took her shower, we did her hair, and I snapped a few pictures of a very special couple. This little girl, the exact middle child, was on Cloud Nine to be getting to spend time with her Daddy. All. By. Herself.


my beautiful girl coming down the stairs
a special surprise from Daddy: a rose and a sweet note that she says she is going to keep forever (yes, I will make sure she does!)
one more picture before they headed out

Thursday, February 18, 2010

from out of left field

Sometimes, when God is at work, and if you are open to His will, there are fires you must go through that are mighty! and deserve their own zip code - as in "Mount St. Helens has nothing on this". A pre-death Purgatory if you will.

Is it a form of purification? Maybe. If you can stand up to the heat, you will be stronger on the other side. If you do, in fact, make it to the other side... so many don't.... you will have a patina like no other. A Beautiful. Rich. Patina.

Achieving that patina, that purification, requires the heftiest tools. Fireproof, unconditional love "suited up" by being completely covered in prayer.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

temptation already?!?!?!?!

Hrmph. Looks like I picked the wrong week to quit sniffing glue.
(Lloyd Bridges in the movie Airplane)

on common ground

I am always overwhelmed by the beauty of a church filled with people who have just gone up to receive ashes on Ash Wednesday. Christians, from the youngest to the oldest wearing an outward sign of repentance, it brings me to tears every time.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

these 40 days

Lent begins in a half hour.... I am giving up Facebook and Starbucks Venti Breve Cappuccinos. There is a small chance I will join in with several of the other folks who live her in giving up ALL liquids other than water. King got a wild look in his eye after I asked him, "but what about the pot of coffee you have each morning?!?!" "Oh. Yeah. The coffee," was his reaction. But he is still going to attempt it. Perhaps Sundays will be filled with big pots of java as they are not counted in the 40 days.

I look forward to once again realizing just how much in need of a Savior I am. I realize this more and more each year and up until this very moment, I was thinking that there is something wrong with me, but perhaps, I shall entertain the thoughts that everything is right with this realization.

Rather than lamenting just how wretched I am because I cannot seem to stick to eating right or exercising... being so defined by the size of my jeans... perhaps I will focus on and rejoice in how much Christ loves me.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

18 years ago today....

.....King asked me to marry him. We were having dinner at the Pasta Peddler in Panama City, FL. He was so nervous. We laughed about it later. He told me all about the moment it dawned on him that I was the one. I remember we called everyone we knew as soon as we got home and told them the good news. Man, I am I glad I said "yes"! I can't imagine my life without him.
Happy Valentine's Day, my love.

Friday, February 12, 2010


We have been rewarded for our patience!

what was that?

King said he heard it.
I felt it.

thunk thunk
thunk thunk


thunk thunk
thunk thunk


thunk thunk
thunk thunk


Yep. I got run over by a bus three times. The driver backed up to see what he had hit, and not seeing anything, ran back over me.

"Rough Morning" by Mark Schuler

Thursday, February 11, 2010

continued from last post (with memory refreshed)

Ok, so in the comment section of the last post, Maureen says, "What if he becomes a priest?" which always crosses my mind, naturally, being a Catholic mom of two boys. But it reminded me of another moment in the conversation that I completely forgot (if I had blogged right after it happened, the details would not be so fuzzy).

#4 asks about his sister, #5... "What about (number 5)? Who is she going to marry? Is she going to marry Jesus?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

could be, y'just never know

Recently the kids and I were heading to a local bar/grille where on Thursday nights they have Irish music.... my daughter's fiddle teacher plays there with a group of folks and has invited her to play with them.

(So do you get that I am a mom whose ten year old daughter joins in on jam sessions at a bar?!?! But wait, there's more... number one, along with her Irish dance friends have also been known to get up and dance a jig or two. But I promise, it isn't as sinister as it sounds - it's actually in the grille side of the place, separate from the bar.)
But I digress, back to the car scene.
So my always-a-source-for-humor four year old says, "Mommy, please let me marry you. Because I want to give you a ring."

"Even though that is sweet, honey, we can't be married. Mommy would have to go to jail, be on tv, and people would call me bad names," I teased (on a level that probably left him befuddled).
"Besides," I continued, "God has someone very special picked out just for you. Somewhere in the world, there is a girl that you are supposed to marry. She is eating her veggies and growing up and having all kinds of experiences, sort of like you, sweetie. And the most fun is that it will be a surprise. Mommy doesn't know who she is, Daddy doesn't know, sisters nor brother know....".

"Who is it Mommy?" he was dying to know. The boy doesn't like surprises.

"I don't know. We will have to wait until you are a grown up to find out."

Fast forward to "da bar" where we were planning to meet up with friends we hadn't been able to spend enough time with for much too long (they have kids our kids ages). He walks into the room and their two girls come to greet us, giving special attention to "above-mentioned four year old", because... well, because he is just a magnet for attention.

He runs up to me, holding their youngest daughter by the hand (she is two years older than he and is equally as entertaining) and says, pointing, "Mommy, Mommy, is SHE the one?!?!"

Friday, February 5, 2010

oh great!

Number 2 just ate the money we had saved from switching to Geico.

in what turned out as crazy hat night

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

under the influence

Ok, this post comes with a disclaimer: about an hour ago, I took a Benedryl because my hives had gotten out of hand. They had been gone for about two months and recently they are back. I thought I had narrowed it down to artificial sweetener... but today blew that theory. I wonder if it is something that the city uses to in the water purification process from time to time that I may be reacting to?

Ennyhoo, I digress. I just wanted to tell you something silly that happened today.

See, wha'ha'happen was: I was in traffic after dropping the wee ones at Mother's Morning Out and it was raining that misty rain. You know, the rain that you don't really need your wipers on, but you sure are glad these newer model cars have the intermittent option.
Well, my wipers were on the slowest option. I was sitting in traffic waiting for the light to turn green, and noticed that the car in front of me had a back window wiper. And it was on. And it was exactly the same speed/timing that mine was.

Crazy, huh? What are the odds?

ok ok, I'm going to bed already. Benedryl has officially kicked in - can you tell?!?!

to my college student friends