Wednesday, January 30, 2008

A Random Meme

Lisa at Unexpected Journey tagged me to do this.

The rules are: Link to the person that tagged you and leave a comment on their blog so that their readers can visit yours. Post the rules on your blog. Share 7 random facts about yourself on your blog. Tag 7 random people at the bottom of your post, linking to their blog. Let each person know by leaving a comment on their blog.

1. I like socks...a lot (especially colorful cute ones)

2. I like to play the guitar (when I find the time)

3. I could sit for hours and do logic problems

4. I think Magnum PI is one of the coolest TV series ever

5. I am a closet sci-fi fan (we're currently on season 1 of Battlestar Galatica - not for children)

6. I have an AS in Engineering, and a BS in Math/Science

7. I collect stamps (when I have the time)

I tag...
You and you and you and you and you and you (is that seven, yet?) and you!

E For Excellence

I have been given the E For Excellence award. Thanks to Lisa at Unexpected Journey, and Patrice at Spiritual Woman. I'm honored ladies! I'm supposed to nominate 10 others, so the winners are (drum-roll):

Donna-Marie at Embracing Motherhood
Michelle at Rosetta Stone
Love2Learn Mom at Studeo

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

I'm not ignoring you...

..really, I'm not. But I have been hanging around the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival. There are so many contests to enter, that it is taking up my free time on the computer, so I have had no time to come tell you what I've been up to. So, go check out the carnival, and enter a contest or a 100 or 300!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

A Voice in the Wind

I am currently reading A Voice in the Wind which is the first in the Mark of the Lion series by Francine Rivers. I'm about halfway through, and so far have been noticing the parallels between Roman society and our modern day society. Listen to this:

Decimus sighed heavily and took her hand again. "I am afraid for them, Phoebe. What happens to a society when all restraints are removed? I see our children consumed with watching blood be spilled in the arena. I see them seeking an unending diet of sensual pleasure. Where does it all lead? How can intemperate minds be free when they're slaves to their own passions?"


Rome tolerated every abominable practice, embraced every foul idea in the name of freedom and the rights of the common man. Citizens no longer carried on deviant behavior in private, but pridefully displayed it in public. It was those with moral values who could no longer freely walk in a public park without having to witness a revolting display.

What had happened to the public censors who protected the majority of citizenry from moral decadence? Did freedom have to mean abolishing common decency? Did freedom mean anyone could do anything they wanted anytime they wanted, without consequences?
--Voice in the Wind, Francine Rivers, pp 214-215

These passages just really struck a chord with me. All one needs to do is take a walk, or turn on the TV and see the same things happening around us. It's very sad, but it can be fixed, one family at a time.

If morals and love of neighbor are taught and practiced in the home, our children will have better chances of being free from the slavery of their passions. And then they can pass these same things on to their children. There is an added bonus. By living these standards, we become models for everyone around us. And maybe, if we have an effect on just one person, they may have an effect on their entire family.

But it has to start in the home first. As mothers, we become a living example of our faith to our children. You can't just ask a child to pray, they have to see us praying, so they know how to. You can't just tell a child to care for others, they need to see us caring for others, so they know how to.

We don't have to settle for living in a culture that chases every whim. We can be different, and trust that God will give us the grace we need overcome our temptations and live a virtuous life.

The Harms

I just finished listening to episode 205 of Rosary Army Podcast. They played a rendition of Hail Holy Queen by The Harms. It is really a great version of this wonderful prayer. You can download a copy of this song for FREE at their website here. There is also another song called St. John Bosco that you can get for FREE as well. I downloaded both of these songs myself and put them on my iPod. This is the first line on their website

The Harms: Music for good, not evil

It's nice to support bands like this, so go ahead, what are you waiting for? Download these songs!

I've reached my calling

You Should Be a Social Worker

You are deeply caring and empathetic.
You are able to take on other people's problems as if they were your own.
Sensitive and intuitive, you understand human emotions well.
Helping others gives you the most joy in life. You feel like it's your purpose in life.

You do best when you:

- Have a lot of responsibility
- Greatly impact someone's life with your work

You would also be a good philanthropist or stay at home parent.
Well, I am a stay-at-home mom, so I guess I'm doing the right thing!

Sts. Timothy and Titus

I'm sorry this has been so sporadic lately. I've found that trying to do each saint on his or her feast day was too tall of an order. So I'm going to give it a shot to do just the major feast days, but if I miss a few (or more) I'm sorry.

Today the church celebrates the feast days of Saints Timothy and Titus.

St. Timothy (d. c. 97) Timothy joined St. Paul when he preached at Lystra. He became a close friend and confidant of St. Paul. Because he was the son of a converted Jewess, Paul allowed him to be circumcised to placate the Jews. He went with Paul on his second missionary. Timothy remained in Berea after Paul was forced to flee, and then was sent to Thessalonica to report on the condition of the Christians there and encourage them. This report led to Paul's first letter to the Thessalonians. Timothy was with Paul when he was imprisoned at Caearea and then Rome. Timothy was also imprisoned but was freed. He became the first bishop of Ephesus, and was later stoned to death there because he opposed the pagan festival of Katagogian. Paul wrote two letters to Timothy, one from Macedonia, and the second from the prison in Rome while awaiting execution.

St. Titus (1st century) Titus was converted by St. Paul and later became his secretary and followed him to the Council of Jerusalem. Paul refused to allow him to be circumcised. Paul sent Titus to Corinth to correct errors and settle dissensions and later to collect alms for the poor Christians in Jerusalem. Paul ordained him bishop of Crete so he could carry out Paul's work there. He received a letter from St. Paul from Macedonia giving instructions on spiritual matters, telling him the qualities of a good bishop, maintaining strict discipline among the Cretans, and telling him to establish presbyters (priests) in the cities of Crete. Timothy died there of advanced age. There are some stories written about Timothy that are considered a work of fiction like the Acts of Titus that was supposedly written by Zenas the lawyer (Titus 3:13).

pictures from Catholic Culture
all information taken from John J. Delaney's Dictionary of Saints

Friday, January 25, 2008

Please pray...

for Donna-Marie and her daughter who were in a car accident today. They both have whiplash and are recovering at home. Her post is here.

I went to the store for orange juice...

...and came home with this.

I did bring home some orange juice too, but these looked to good to refuse. The crayons above actually produced a masterpiece, so I'm calling it a productive day. (I'm still feeling pretty icky, so since DH is on retreat this weekend, I've promised myself a chance to recuperate. I'm hoping I'll be good as new by Sunday evening when he gets home. The chocolate should help.)

Here is Fritter's very first piece of artwork. I'm thinking he could be a genius.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Book Meme

Here are the rules of the meme:

1. Pick up the nearest book (of at least 123 pages).
2. Open the book to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people.

Let's see the nearest book is The Imitation of Christ. I use this book for my morning meditation, and it just happened to be stacked on top of my prayer book and my Magnificat. This should be good, maybe something inspiring. Let's see, page 123. Fifth sentence. Here goes.

Christ: That you conform your desires and affections to My good pleasure, that you be not full of self-love, but a zealous follower of My will in all things. I understand well how desires sway you this way or that; but you should consider whether you are moved mainly for My honor or for your own interests. If I am the cause, you will be at peace whatever I do with you.
--Imitation of Christ, p. 123

Funny how sometimes the perfect things that need to be said at any particular time, have a way of getting out. I recently read Mother Theresa's speech, and this is one of the things I took away from that. It is not always about us and our comforts, but about God's will for us. If we seek to always follow His will, His comfort will be more than enough to sustain us. This is something that I would do well to always keep in my mind.

Hmmm...I tag, Lisa, Michelle, Sarah, Cheryl, and...YOU!

HT: Dawn

Closet Space

I am a woman who worries about closet space, and one day I'll be dead.
--Marie Bellet "Closet Space"

This pretty much sums it up. The closets in our apartment are close to overflowing. In fact, the linen closet already did, as you will see in the pictures below. So, I came up with a grand plan to attack the problem. Ok, maybe only two of the closets, but it's a start, right?

I don't have a before picture of Fritter's closet, but trust me, it was full. It wasn't really messy, but I had ALL of the clothes that he had outgrown, in tubs, in his closet. So, I decided it was time for them to come out. They will go to our garage, until we need them again (God willing). So, this is what I pulled out of his closet.

And while I was at it, I pulled this out too. We use a smaller umbrella stroller now, so this can go in the garage until we need it again. (Baby not included).

Don't laugh when you see this next picture. I mean it, don't laugh! This was my linen closet before. I told you it was overflowing!

I took out all of the baby blankets and baby sheets and baby things, and put them in the newly opened area of Fritter's closet.

Then, I decided that Fritter has too many toys just laying around, so I put them into two separate baskets, and these will get rotated out once a week or so. (That's my plan for now). Before naps and bedtime, and before we leave the house, we will plop all the toys he has taken out into the basket and store it back in his closet.

All my hard work paid off. Here is my new and improved linen closet. I think I will smile now when I open this door.
That's about all the energy I have for organizing today. This weekend I have more plans though, so I will be sure to share.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Whatever You Did to the Least, You Did Unto Me

I just finished reading the speech Mother Theresa gave during a prayer breakfast at the white house on February 3, 1994. I have to say...Wow! I don't know what else to say. She was one lady with a big, pure heart. Here are some of my favorite excerpts from the speech:

And as if that were not enough, as if it were not enough that God the Son should become one of us and bring peace and joy while still in the womb of Mary, Jesus also died on the Cross to show that greater love. He died for you and for me, and for that leper and for that man dying of hunger and that naked person lying in the street, not only of Calcutta, but of Africa and everywhere. Our Sisters serve these poor people in 105 countries throughout the world. Jesus insisted that we love one another as He loves each one of us. Jesus gave His life to love us, and He tells us that we also have to give whatever it takes to do good to one another. And in the Gospel Jesus says very clearly: "Love as I have loved you."

Powerful, right? Yes, and then she tells a story of visiting a retirement home.

I can never forget the experience I had in visiting a home where they kept all these old parents of sons and daughters who had just put them into an institution and forgotten them, maybe. I saw that in that home these old people had everything -- good food, comfortable place, television, everything, but everyone was looking toward the door. And I did not see a single one with a smile on his face. I turned to Sister and I asked: "Why do these people who have every comfort here, why are they all looking toward the door? Why are they not smiling?"

I am so used to seeing the smile on our people, even the dying ones smile. And Sister said: "This is the way it is nearly every day. They are expecting, they are hoping that a son or daughter will come to visit them. They are hurt because they are forgotten." And see, this neglect to love brings spiritual poverty. Maybe in our own family we have somebody who is feeling lonely, who is feeling sick, who is feeling worried. Are we there? Are we willing to give until it hurts in order to be with our families, or do we put our own interests first?

And perhaps the most fitting piece for today is this:

But I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war against the child, a direct killing of the innocent child, murder by the mother herself. And if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another? How do we persuade a woman not to have an abortion? As always, we must persuade her with love and we remind ourselves that love means to be willing to give until it hurts. Jesus gave even His life to love us. So, the mother who is thinking of abortion should be helped to love, that is, to give until it hurts her plans, or her free time, to respect the life of her child. The father of that child, whoever he is, must also give until it hurts.

By abortion, the mother does not learn to love, but kills even her own child to solve her problems. And, by abortion, the father is told that he does not have to take any responsibility at all for the child he has brought into the world. That father is likely to put other women into the same trouble. So abortion just leads to more abortion. Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want. This is why the greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion.

To close, Mother Theresa said:

If we remember that God loves us, and that we can love others as He loves us, then America can become a sign of peace for the world. From here, a sign of care for the weakest of the weak -- the unborn child -- must go out to the world. If you become a burning light of justice and peace in the world, then really you will be true to what the founders of this country stood for.

Just as relevant today as it was 14 years ago. You can read the entire text of the speech here.
As a side note, I wanted to point out that after this speech, Mother Theresa received a standing ovation from her audience. Everyone, that is, except for the Clinton's. I'm looking for a video clip of this speech, and perhaps that will be shown on it. I'll update if I find one.

Day of Penance

Today is a day of penance for the violation to the dignity of the human person committed through acts of abortion. Pray for the full restoration of the legal guarantee of the right to life. For those of us unable to make it to Washington DC today for the March for Life, tune in to EWTN today for complete coverage of the march. So far President George Bush has spoken, and presidential hopeful Ron Paul. We are also invited to give up something, or make some acts of penance. Also, consider going to Mass and/or adoration today. Let's storm heaven with our prayers for life.

Have a blessed Tuesday!

Monday, January 21, 2008

My Privileges

My Privileges
From What Privileges Do You Have?, based on an exercise about class and privilege developed by Will Barratt, Meagan Cahill, Angie Carlen, Minnette Huck, Drew Lurker, Stacy Ploskonka at Illinois State University. If you participate in this blog game, they ask that you PLEASE acknowledge their copyright.
Bold the true statements.

1. Father went to college
2. Father finished college
3. Mother went to college
4. Mother finished college
5. Have any relative who is an attorney, physician, or professor.
6. Were the same or higher class than your high school teachers.
7. Had more than 50 books in your childhood home.
8. Had more than 500 books in your childhood home.
9. Were read children's books by a parent
10. Had lessons of any kind before you turned 18 (if taking the free violin lessons in my public elementary school count)
11. Had more than two kinds of lessons before you turned 18
12. The people in the media who dress and talk like me are portrayed positively
13. Had a credit card with your name on it before you turned 18
14. Your parents (or a trust) paid for the majority of your college costs
15. Your parents (or a trust) paid for all of your college costs
16. Went to a private high school
17. Went to summer camp
18. Had a private tutor before you turned 18
19. Family vacations involved staying at hotels (we lived in hotels, but I wouldn't call that a vacation)
20. Your clothing was all bought new before you turned 18
21. Your parents bought you a car that was not a hand-me-down from them
22. There was original art in your house when you were a child
23. You and your family lived in a single-family house
24. Your parent(s) owned their own house or apartment before you left home
25. You had your own room as a child
26. You had a phone in your room before you turned 18

27. Participated in a SAT/ACT prep course
28. Had your own TV in your room in high school
29. Owned a mutual fund or IRA in high school or college
30. Flew anywhere on a commercial airline before you turned 16
31. Went on a cruise with your family
32. Went on more than one cruise with your family
33. Your parents took you to museums and art galleries as you grew up
34. You were unaware of how much heating bills were for your family

HT: Cheryl


I have not been feeling well lately. Last Wednesday evening I went to bed with a sore throat, and it hasn't left since. I've also been feeling very run down, and not really wanting to do much of anything but lay on the couch and read. Or play Final Fantasy. Yep, the original for Nintendo. I've never beaten it, but I found this nifty site where I was able to find a walk-through of the game. Very cool. I've been off and on playing this game since I got it when I was, what, 12? Not the same game obviously. I would get stuck, we'd move and it would go in storage, and then I would start all over again. This time, I'm gonna beat it.

Anyway, back to me feeling icky. I've been feeling icky. Run down, tired, icky. Today, I had to force myself to get stuff done, and I really did get quite a bit done. I made a trip to Walmart for groceries, and then to Sam's for more groceries. I vacuumed, dusted the living room, cleaned the kitchen, cleaned the toilets, made the beds, cooked dinner, cleaned the get the idea. I must say, the one thing that helps me stay motivated (besides thinking of a trashed house) is my iPod. I am subscribed to quite a few podcasts, and I am addicted. They really make folding laundry not feel like such a chore. ;-) Here is a list of the podcasts I am currently subscribed to:

Catholic Answers
Catholic Connection
Catholic in a Small Town
Chant Cast
Dan Carlin's Hardcore History
Family Minute with Dr. Ray
Rosary Army Catholic Podcast
St. Irenaeus Ministries
The Saint Cast

My favorites are Catholic Connection (we don't have catholic radio here, so I settle for catholic podcasts of radio shows), Catholic in a Small Town, and Rosary Army. Catholic Answers is a good one though, as they answer question from everyone, catholic or not, about the catholic faith. Chant Cast is a newer one, but I am liking it. It's a short show, about 10 minutes, and the host (can't remember the name off the top of my head) introduces some of the more common Gregorian chants so we can learn them and maybe take that knowledge to Mass with us. The current ones are the Sanctus, Regina Caeli, and Mortem Tuam. You can also go to the website and print off copies of the chants with their music.

That's all I have for now. Maybe soon I will post a review of Freefall. Very good book.

Have a blessed evening!

Friday, January 18, 2008

No Snuggles For You!

We all know children go through days where they are overly clinging and just really need us. Well, today I am the one needing my little boy. I put him down for a nap, and I miss him. He gets up from a nap and all I want him to do is snuggle with me. Fritter has never really been a very snuggly child, but he does have times where he will wrap his little arms around my neck and give me a hug. Today he is most definitely NOT snuggly. I keep chasing him down and giving him quick snuggles though and he keeps on resisting. Except now that I have sat down to write, he comes up to me and gives me his stuffed duck to snuggle. Cute, but definitely not a replacement for the real thing. Excuse me while I steal some giggly kisses. :-)

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Tainted Water!!!

Oh my gosh!! You can't even drink water anymore without wondering what's in it! Up north of us, people were warned not to drink or cook with their tap water because it may be contaminated with Trichloroethylene (TCE). I wasn't sure what this was, so I googled it. It is a chemical used to clean machinery parts. From the Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry:

Trichloroethylene is a colorless liquid which is used as a solvent for cleaning metal parts. Drinking or breathing high levels of trichloroethylene may cause nervous system effects, liver and lung damage, abnormal heartbeat, coma, and possibly death.

You can be exposed to this chemical by:

Breathing air in and around the home which has been contaminated with trichloroethylene vapors from shower water or household products such as spot removers and typewriter correction fluid.
Drinking, swimming, or showering in water that has been contaminated with trichloroethylene.
Contact with soil contaminated with trichloroethylene, such as near a hazardous waste site.
Contact with the skin or breathing contaminated air while manufacturing trichloroethylene or using it at work to wash paint or grease from skin or equipment.

Technically, we live outside the area affected by this, but not THAT far! We normally drink bottled water, but I'm thinking we're going to be cooking with it from now on as well. And showering...Ummm...

Good, hubby is home. I need his strength and opinion for this one.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Which Austen Heroine Are You?

I am Marianne Dashwood!

Take the Quiz here!

It tells me I play the piano beautifully and have a wonderful singing voice. I don't, although I would love to on both accounts. Other than that, it was pretty accurate (especially the impatient part).

HT: Studeo

Moments of Beauty

The picture I took in the post below will be featured on a new blog, Moments of Beauty on the 19th. This is a must-have on your subscription list. Every day there is a new photo posted from anyone wanting to share their "moments of beauty". Check it out!


I usually don't get too much into the New Year's Resolution thing, mostly because I don't think about it until after January 1, and then I feel like I'm too late and then I still put it off, and then...

So, I'm a little late, but it IS still January, so here are my New Year's Resolutions.

1. Make will - Nope, haven't done this yet, mostly because we are not really sure who we want to ask to take Fritter if anything were to happen to us. BUT, we really need to get this done, and not put it off. Done, it just needs signed and notarized.

2. Make daily mass once a week - Ideally, I'd like to go everyday, but I'm not good at starting new habits, so once a week is a good start. And easy to do. Ummm...See 2010 Resolutions

3. Print and put pictures in albums - Ugg. Done, mostly because I've given up the idea of albums

4. Grow in virtue - Easy to say, hard to do. Right now, I'm working on Trust. I have grown in patience, but that doesn't mean I'm a patient person yet. The trust thing is something I'm really still working on. This goal was a little too...fluffy to quantify.

5. Grow in faith - Intertwined with virtue and daily mass. Again, too fluffy to quantify.

The next goals are my personal financial goals (for six months), and I had DH make a list of his personal financial goals, and we combined them into one family set of goals. This list is just MY goals.

1. Pay off credit card - Ugg. Done, woo-hoo!

2. Replace one piece of furniture (my hope, the recliner) Yep, recliner got replaced.

3. Visit SIL in Georgia in March No, didn't do this one, but she came and saw us January 2009 for Ladybug's baptism.

4. Visit Wyoming beginning of July Yep, great trip.

5. Begin saving for a house Done. We're living in it. ;-)

6. 10% income to charity - 5% to church, 5% to other We've been really bad about being consistent with this, so we included it in our budget so we would do it. We are taking 10% right off the top of each bi-weekly paycheck. sigh.

7. Subscription to Magnificat Yes, but I'm thinking of letting it lapse. Why did I see this as so important?

8. Reduce phone costs - We each have a cell phone, and we also have a land line. I'd like to keep the land-line and one cell, and then maybe get a prepaid cell or something. Not sure quite what to do here, but with an $87 cell phone bill every month on top of a $35 land-line bill, it's a little out of hand. My husband is talking about Vonage, but we haven't really done our research. Any ideas? How do you handle the phone issue? We lowered the cell phone bill by switching companies, and kept the landline only because we called to cancel and they lowered the bill for us for a year. ;-)

Updated December 18, 2009 in blue.


Little Helper

Daddy's little helper

Mommy's little helper

*That's what I get for not putting the clothes away as soon as they are folded.*

My Desk

Nina asked to see a picture of our desks; messy, neat, or otherwise. Well, mine is definitely on the messy side, but here goes.

You guessed it, stacks and stacks of books. Many of which are just coming in from the wonderful Barnes and Noble gift card I received for Christmas (thanks Mom!). Sorting out the books, we have in the pile to the far right of the picture:

What to Expect the First Year

The Saggy Baggy Elephant

Catechism of the Catholic Church (Wow, this book is everywhere in my house!)

Redeeming Love - Francine Rivers (New)

Pride and Prejudice

Mother's Rule of Life (New)

On top of this stack of books is this weeks AND last weeks church bulletin, my calculator, and a piece of paper from Adoremus Books. To the left of the stack is a bill.

Next to the computer screen is a Celestial Seasonings Natural Cider tin that now contains change. The blue thing next to that is a desk caddy that is supposed to help keep me organized, but it is not doing its job (or is that me?). Behind the computer speaker is a mug that holds pens, and between that and the printer are all of our bills. Now for the stack of books in front of the printer.

On top we have Discipline That Lasts a Lifetime - Dr. Ray Guarendi (New)

Reasons To Believe - Scott Hahn (New)

The Total Money Makeover - Dave Ramsey (New)

Life-Giving Love - Kimberly Hahn

Mark of the Lion Series - Francine Rivers

Funny story of both the Mark of the Lion Series books and the Redeeming Love books by Francine Rivers. Over Christmas at my MIL house, we had been talking about Christian authors, and I happened to mention how I had read The Last Sin-Eater. She got very excited and told my that Francine Rivers is one of her favorite authors. When we got home after Christmas, she called to tell me she had order the above books for herself, but she wanted me to read them first. Fun, huh?

Ok, moving on, the stack on top of the printer has my voters registration and a pile of bills below that. Below the books is last years calendar, a new 2008 calendar, and stacks of papers that need to be filed. As for the books we have:

The Proper Care & Feeding of Husbands - Dr. Laura Schlessinger

You're a Better Parent Than You Think! - Dr. Ray Guarendi

The Strong-Willed Child - Dobson

Prayerfully Expecting - Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle

A borrowed copy that is getting returned now that I have my own Life Giving Love

And finally, my husbands Machinery's Handbook that he got for Christmas

In front of the printer are our Church Offering Envelopes, two CD's What I Wanted To Say - Marie Bellet, and The Christmas Song - Nat King Cole. Below that is another calculator, the bedroom TV remote, a pair of socks (how did those get there?), and a copy of Consumer Reports.

On the wall by the computer screen is a prayer card of St. Michael Archangel, above that is a new 2008 calendar, and next to that (out of screen) is a perpetual calendar.

There you have it. A glimpse into my disorderly life. Now, I am motivated to clean up this mess. Where did I put my iPod?...

*Edited to add: After this humiliating post, I cleaned up the mess, but I'm a little to lazy to post a picture of after. I'm sure you can use your imagination though ;) *

Can't Check Gmail

Are any of you having this problem? I cannot check my Gmail. All I get is a blank screen, not even an error screen. If any of you have emailed me within the last couple of days, sorry I haven't responded. I've been trying to wait it out, thinking it was just a Gmail problem, but it's still not fixed! Grr...

*Editor's note: I finally fixed the problem (whatever it was). If this ever happens to you, go to your internet options and delete your temporary files and your cookies. Everything worked great after I did this. (Besides having a TON of emails!)*

Sunday, January 13, 2008


Fritter is getting all four eye teeth (you know, the pointy ones) in at once. He has not been napping well because of it. I don't think he's had a nap longer than twenty minutes for about 4 days now. He wakes up crying and is only happy when he's in my arms. This makes getting other things done very difficult at best. Getting him to sleep at night has also taken a turn for the worst, and even then, he has been waking up about twice before morning. Last night he woke up at around 2:30, and it took us until about 3 to get him back to sleep.

Poor little guy. On top of teething (or maybe because of it?) he has been vomiting a little bit now and then. Not really enough to make him even notice it, but enough to make him smell like he just climbed out of the latrine. I hope this passes soon. I've tried giving him the Baby Orajel to numb things up until a dose of Infant Tylenol kicks in, but even that doesn't seem to work. I don't usually like giving him stuff, but the poor boy is in pain.

As for the vomiting, I'm thinking it is because of the teething. I could be wrong, but he's eating ok and acts fine when he is awake and with me. I suppose it could be a small virus or something. I'm just going to have to keep an eye on it.

So, any of you have any tried and true remedies for teething?

Friday, January 11, 2008

Fear and Trust

The meditation in the Magnificat today asks us to find what it is we are afraid of. "What is it that we're frightened of? Because from fear and anguish can rise hate and from hate can rise war."

It didn't take long for me to admit that I fear being left alone. I fear everyone I love being taken from me. I fear instability. Because of this fear, I have become rigid. I thrive on schedules, and if something is disorderly (or I sense that any certain action or inaction could cause disorder) I put a stop to it immediately. My son is not really old enough to feel any effects of this (yet) but my husband is and does. I am a pest, a nag, a badgering wife. And while my heart is usually good, my husband doesn't always see that.

With a deeper look into myself, I find that I am the one causing instability. Not my husband, not my mother, not the cat next door. Me. I need to remember that even if the worst things that could happen did, I would not be alone. Christ is with me. He loves me. And he carries me through any storm. He has. And he will do it again. I have to trust Him. Trust in others will naturally flow from this. And the fear that breeds my anger will melt away.

The Lord is my light and my salvation;
whom should I fear?
The Lord is my life's refuge;
of whom should I be afraid?
When evildoers come at me
to devour my flesh,
My foes and my enemies
themselves stumble and fall.
Though an army encamp against me,
my heart will not fear;
Though war be waged upon me,
even then will I trust.
--Psalm 27

Thursday, January 10, 2008

The Ideal Catholic Wife

My blog is in the top ten choices on Google for "the ideal catholic wife". Well, I'm far from ideal, (very, very far) but I think we all strive for it. Anyway, to the people who stumbled here looking for the ideal Catholic wife, you haven't found her, but maybe you will find something useful here (or on many of the closer-to-ideal-than-me women's blogs noted on my sidebar).
God bless!

Five Whole Minutes

After yesterday's much needed nap and then cleaning rush, I had quite a lot to do today to catch up. And then while I was at it, I did even more. So far, on top of the normal things, I have dusted the living room, dusted Fritters room and changed his sheets, dusted the dining room, and cleaned the top of the ceiling fan (yuck!).

Anyway, I am banned from the computer after this post for the rest of the day. My dear husband is taking data from our meter both today and tomorrow to see how much electricity our home uses. Today is supposed to be a normal day without the computer, and tomorrow a normal day with the computer. Hey, he's an engineer, and efficiency is what they're best at (and reducing that pesky power bill). I begged to have five minutes today though so I could check my email and check in here. What can I say? He loves me and gave me my five minutes. ;)

So long, I will check in tomorrow after my carpets get shampooed!!

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Decision Made

Earlier I was tossing back and forth a little decision that needed to be made. I chose to read on my couch which eventually gave way to a little nap on the couch. That little nap turned into an hour long snoozeathon by me and Fritter. I woke up to the sound of him talking to himself. After a nice walk outside to get the mail (and wake me up) we came back inside and I ran through my chores. It sounded like I had to do a lot, and felt like even more before I did it, but it really only took me about 45 minutes to do everything that needed to get done.

So, I guess I kind of did both, although next time I have the opportunity to make this particular decision, I think I'll do the quick cleaning first and the reading (and possible nap) second.

Hard Choice

While Fritter is taking his nap (and I hope he will be out for a while) I have to make a choice. I could:
a) make the bed, load the dishwasher, sweep the floor, fold and put away the clothes, start a new load of laundry...
b) snuggle on my couch with a hot cup of tea, a glass of water, and finish Pride and Prejudice

Decisions, decisions.

You Know You Are a Mother of a Toddler When... sit down to eat your lunch of leftover chicken and potatoes, and you not only cut up all of your chicken in bite sized pieces, but (while feeding your toddler pieces of oranges from your fingers) you begin to eat your chicken with your fingers.

The manners around here...sheesh!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Who are you...

...and what have you done with my little boy?!

Recently, Fritter has begun throwing tantrums. I thought he was a little young for that, but he thought otherwise. Not throw-yourself-on-the-floor-and-bang-your-head type tantrums, but tantrums nonetheless. *sigh*

Also, we used to put him in his playpen for one minute if he touched (read bang on) the TV and stereo and while he didn't enjoy it, he was ok with it, and it worked for the most part. Of course, he still touched the TV now and then, but when I would say, "No Fritter, do not touch the ___" he would usually stop.

But NOW, since we have taken the playpen down we put him in his crib (with the light on and door open) for one minute just like before. Any oh-boy does he scream. His little face gets red, his fists ball up, and he screams. Interestingly enough, when we put him in his crib to go to sleep, he lays right down, snuggles with his duck and sleeps, so no issues there. *double sigh*

PS - He is still a generally happy little boy, as before, just a little louder when he gets angry.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

I Have Days

I have days where I really would be better off crawling back into bed and pretending the morning never happened.

I have days where just about everything I say comes out wrong and ends up offending someone I love.

I have days where it's hard to remember to offer up all my struggles instead of complain about them and feel sorry for myself.

Today is one of those days, on the Epiphany of the Lord no less, where I'd like to wake up once more and start my day all over again. It's days like today where I have to remind myself over and over again that God is there for me and just waiting for me to call out to him so he can reach down, pick me up, dust me off, and turn me in the right direction. And he really will. Because he loves me, in all my imperfection and undeserving self.

Friday, January 4, 2008

My Reading List

I have just been making a reading list for myself. This was actually one of my New Years Resolutions (I went practical this year;) ). I made one listing the books I currently own and still need (and want) to read. The second list is books I want to read, but do not currently own. After making the two lists, I realized that I own way too many books that I have not finished reading, so I now have a new resolution. I am not buying anymore books, until I finish reading the ones I own. This is going to be a doozy!

*Note: the books I just ordered yesterday are already added to my current reading list, so that doesn't count ;)*

So, here is my current reading list:

Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
Life Giving Love - Kimberly Hahn
Fascinating Womanhood - Helen Andelin
The Strong-Willed Child - James Dobson
Mere Christianity - CS Lewis
The Abolition of Man - CS Lewis
The Great Divorce - CS Lewis
The Problem of Pain - CS Lewis
Miracles - CS Lewis
A Grief Observed - CS Lewis
The Five Love Languages - Gary Chapman
West From Home - Laura Ingles Wilder
You're a Better Parent Than You Think - Ray Guarendi
Freefall - Kristen Heitzmann
Crossing the Threshold of Hope - JPII
The Proper Care & Feeding of Husbands - Laura Schlessinger
Mom to Mom, Day to Day - Danielle Bean
Reason's To Believe - Scott Hahn
Hail Holy Queen - Scott Hahn
Discipline that Lasts a Lifetime - Ray Guarendi
Mother's Rule of Life - Holly Pierlot
Total Money Makeover - Dave Ramsey
Christ is My Life - Marcial Maciel

And some books for meditation, starting with my current one:

Imitation of Christ
Envoy I
The Power of a Praying Wife

Hopefully this reading list will help me stay focused. Instead of reading a hundred books at once and taking forever to finish something, I am going to TRY to read one at a time...ok, maybe two, but that's it!

PS - I'm linking these books to Amazon, over on my side-bar.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Our Christmas Vacation

Overall it was a very good trip, but I must say, I am happy to be home. Oh, of course I miss my family and friends, but I gotta tell you, I did not miss the bitter cold that accompanies Wyoming winters. We did drive, and the trip started out very nice. As the picture below tells you, we were all in very good spirits.

On the way, we actually drove over Hoover Dam. This was exciting for both DH and I, him being an engineer, and me studying architectural engineering for a while in school. They are actually building a bridge so cars will no longer be able to drive over the dam once it is complete.

We drove all the way to Wyoming in one day. We learned our lesson, we will not be doing that again. But for the most part, the weather was ok. There were some places in Utah where we didn't think the roads would stay open, but they did, and we made it.

After driving through snow, we wanted to actually enjoy it. It was extremely cold, however (how's 2 degrees for you?), and so after much bundling, we stayed outside long enough to take this picture.

Christmas Eve, we went to Midnight Mass, as usual. It was nice, but sad to say not very many people showed up, even for small town Wyoming standards.

Christmas Day, we enjoyed the company of my mother and father -in-law, and also my BIL and SIL and their two boys, and another BIL and SIL from Washington state. We opened gifts, and Fritter was pleased to find what Santa had left him.

But more than anything, he enjoyed playing in the mess that took over the entire house.

Later that day, the neighbors across the street were expecting visitors. The white van you see in the below picture, however got very stuck in the middle of the street, and of course the guys in our house had an opportunity to play in the snow.

A couple of days after Christmas, my SIL and I decided to take a walk. It was cold, but the wind was not blowing. As we neared the park, we came upon three deer in someones yard. As we walked slowly closer, one of the deer noticed us, but did not run away. I think these deer are fairly used to people being around. My SIL asked me if we needed to worry about the deer charging us, so after taking this picture, we crossed the street, away from them.

On the other side of the street were some horses, including a mama and baby. Not shown in this picture is the daddy who stood right by the fence in front of us the whole time, protecting them.

Right before we left for my family's part of the state, we received Flat Stanley from our family in Georgia. Stanley wanted to experience the snow before he left with us, so we showed him the snow the same way we showed Fritter the snow, only Stanley did not come equipped with a coat and hat.

After this leg of the trip, we went to visit my family in another part of the state. Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures, and so I am going to have to rely on other family members, who were prepared with their cameras, to email me pictures.

Anyway, it was a pleasant visit followed by a very long drive home. This drive we split into two days. I think next Christmas, we might fly home.

My Nightstand

Jennifer at As Cozy as Spring asked to see our nightstands. So here is mine.

Let's see...we have the ever handy scrunchy. Pride and Prejudice, which I am currently reading. It seems no Catholic woman's nightstand is complete without a Catechism of the Catholic Church. Below that is What to Expect the First Year, and below that is my NFP chart. In the picture frame is a picture of DH and I when we first started dating, and behind that is a jar of calcium pills. On the other side of the light is the lotion I forgot to return to its place a LONG time ago, so this seems to be its new home. And right next to that, you can barely see it, is a very small alarm clock I was using to give Fritter his medicine about a month ago.

So there you have it. My nightstand. Pretty, huh?

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Well then...

After finally unpacking (of course the laundry is not done), grocery list making and shopping (and hauling up three flights of stairs and putting away) and then re-cleaning the mess Fritter made with all his new electronic (thanks family) toys and books (we like those though) it is almost 8 o'clock, and I am exhausted. I still have quite a lot to do tomorrow, Flat Stanley for one thing, but not nearly as much as today. I know you are dying to hear all about our adventures in the snow (am I glad to be home where it is nice and warm) and I promise to get to it all very, very soon. Until then, have a blessed evening!

I think he has an alarm clock hidden under his mattress...

because when I laid him down for his morning nap, I told him that he must sleep until at least 12:00. At 11:59 (by the VCR clock, 11:56 computer time) he started fussing. Maybe I should have told him to sleep until 12:30...

Where I Have Been...

Hmmm... I think I need to do some more traveling!

create your own visited states map
or check out these Google Hacks.

I'm Back!

Yay! We made it home yesterday evening after a VERY long drive for two days. It was a great Christmas. I will update in a while, but for now, Fritter needs to be fed breakfast. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! God bless!