Friday, June 25, 2010

See You Soon!

We are officially....On.Va.Ca.Tion! Yay! Please pray for safe travels for us.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Polite (Dis)Obedience

Me: Ok son, are you ready to come out of the corner and be obedient?

Fritter: No, thank you.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Saint Paul Documentary

I have to say that I was pretty disappointed in the documentary Apostle Paul and the Earliest Churches. I really wanted to like this movie, but I just couldn't. The cinematography leaves much to be desired. With an abundance of camera pans and weird angels, it was sometimes hard to tell what I was supposed to be looking at. And while the film boasts of 3D animated maps of the places St. Paul visited, they are presented in a hard to follow manner.

The documentary is very factual, but the retelling of Paul's travels in it is boring. It begins with the conversion of Paul and follows him through his travels through Anatolia or Turkey. Though this is a subject I tend to be very interested in, I could not get into it. The documentary is only 48 minutes long, but I found myself bored and never actually finished it.

I think in the short amount of time the filmmakers had, they tried to do way too much. The movie description states that this documentary is meant to show "[t]he historical, religious, and archaeological background of each Anatolian region...[the] reenactment of the miracles Paul performed, the difficulties Paul encountered, and the persecution Paul faced...Significant artifacts from a variety of Turkish museums are also discussed." While all these things are briefly looked at, the documentary rushes through them so fast the viewer is unable to really appreciate (or understand) what they are being presented with.

My recommendation to the producers would be that they should have given the cameraman less freedom to confuse the eye, and spent more time on the script, while narrowing down the topics. I would not recommend this movie.

I wrote this review of The Apostle Paul and the Earliest Churches for the Tiber River Blogger Review program, created by Aquinas and More Catholic Goods, your source for First Communion Gifts. For more information and to purchase, please visit Aquinas and More Catholic Goods. Tiber River is the first Catholic book review site, started in 2000 to help you make informed decisions about Catholic book purchases.

*I receive free product samples as compensation for writing reviews for Tiber River.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Pre-Vacation Blues

With vacation looming and the deadline of a large project at work, my dear, dear husband has been working basically non-stop since last week. When I say non-stop, I'm talking about 12-15 hour days Monday through Friday and again both Saturday and Sunday. He's hoping to be able to stay home this weekend. I'm hoping, too.

This morning I complained that this was the longest two weeks of my life. I looked to my husband for confirmation that it was indeed the longest two weeks of his life. Wrong. He said it's been the shortest. And that's the difference between what my husband deals with daily and what I deal with daily.

When he is putting in long hours, he looks to the clock and realizes it's 7:30pm and hasn't even had time to eat lunch. He walks in long enough to kiss the baby and kiss the three-year-old before it's time for them to go to bed. And before he knows it, it's 11pm and he needs to get up at 5am to do it all over again. And he has still managed to not complain, and to give what he can to us when he gets home.

I, on the other hand, look to the clock and realize it's only 9:30am and I'm already at my wits end. I have a house to clean, children to feed, laundry to attend to, and a trip to plan, and at some point I can't even bring myself to get started on any of it. I suppose I could put the kids in front of a movie and read books to my hearts content. And that's ok every once in a while. But not everyday for two weeks.

When I face long days like today, I realize there is nothing more for me to do, but get up, follow my rule, and pray that God makes the most of my efforts. It's days like today I really need Him to walk with me. It's days like today that my prayer commitments are probably the most important things to fulfill. And it's days like today that I need to be thankful for all the great blessings we have. My husband, who provides for us, for the house that I have the opportunity to clean, the children I have been blessed to care for. These frustrations are truly blessings, and I should treat them as such.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Grand Family Adventure

In about a week and a half we will begin our grand family adventure. We are taking a road trip to Louisiana to visit family and then we'll go on to Georgia to visit more family. But wait, to add even more adventure, we are not planning on staying in hotels. We are going to camp out along the way (ahem, in campgrounds, with showers. We're not that brave.).

This has made planning interesting. (If you know my husband and I you know that we are very much planning people). Did you know that between here and there is an entire stretch of dry, dusty, desert land? With only a few places possible considering safety and comfort? Well, at least according to my research that's the case. I keep imagining us somewhere in West Texas with nothing to provide shade except a stray tumbleweed.

Really though, I think we've got it figured out. The second night we are staying outside of San Antonio. And the very cool thing about this is that we are going to attend Mass at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Little Flower! I've checked out pictures online and the church is gorgeous with Mass at just the right time. Our journey out of San Antonio takes us right past the Alamo. We could probably spend a lot of time exploring San Antonio, but my husband says we need to make good time. ;-)

We've also promised each other that drive-thrus are prohibited and nothing but gas may be purchased at a convenience store. This means we either eat our own food, or suffer through a sit down restaurant with two kids who have been trapped in a van for hours. So I've planned for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and all snacks to be eaten either on the road or in our campsites.

I still am hoping to jot down the cheapest gas stations along our route. And I also need to plan things to keep the kids happy in the van. We do have video in our van, so that will help. But I don't really like the idea of them watching movies the entire trip. It's good for them to be a little bored. But I am recording appropriate shows off PBS and Smile of a Child.

And after all this planning, I still have to wait about a week and a half for it to become reality. Have I mentioned I'm not very good at practicing patience?

Sunday, June 13, 2010


Picked from a hat the winner of the summer giveaway is Kate! Be on the lookout for some summer loveliness, Kate. And thanks for all the tips everyone. I now have a few tricks up my sleeve to get us through our days this summer. ;-)

Monday, June 7, 2010

Summer Is Here (Giveaway!)

And it's hot! We got home from camping and was greeted by a lovely 113 degrees. It won't be long before I'm daydreaming of snow!

We mostly have our summer planned, but I've been trying to think of things to do with the kids inside. You know, for those times I would normally send them outside to run around in circles and get their energy out. My creative side is sunburned though, and all I can think of is swimming. But that requires me to get my energy out. And I kind of need that.

So, ideas? When it's too hot (or cold depending on where you live) to go outside, how do you occupy the little ones? As an incentive to give me ideas, I'll randomly choose a commenter and send them a lovely summertime surprise!

**This giveaway will be open until Sunday night.**

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Quite Contrary

Mama mama mama mama
How does your garden grow?
Silver bells and cockle shells
And the slugs are all going home.
--Courtesy of Fritter

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


Me: Daddy went to the Washington Monument today. Isn't that cool?

Fritter: Yeah! So his car could get washed!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Since My Hubby Is Out of Town...

...I'm spending my evening (ok, I'll admit it, part of my day as well) reading and thinking and praying about Fritter's education next year. I know there are varying opinions on the subject of preschool, and I happen to agree with all of them. ;-)

Sending Fritter off to traditional preschool isn't really one of our options for several reasons. A very important one of those reasons is that we are planning on homeschooling. Maybe. Probably. BUT, I really feel that Fritter, being Fritter, needs the extra structure that would come with preschool. And so we're going to start this program at home in the fall. The curriculum was handed down to us by a good friend, so that decision was made for us. Otherwise I think I'd be bogged down by all the choices.

We've recently changed parishes. Again. (Stick with me, this will connect). However, our new parish, as happy as we are with it, does not have Catecheses of the Good Shepherd like our old parish does. But they do have another Religious Education program for preschoolers. So, after much hemming and hawing, we've decided to enroll Fritter in the fall. But, I'm still really disappointed about not having the option of Atrium.

But today, while reading through the preschool curriculum, it suggested supplementing the child's RE with a couple of different options. One of these is from the Daughters of St. Paul called I Learn About Jesus. AND while talking with the RE director today, she mentioned that you can also do Atrium at home. So after more research, I found this great post by Elizabeth Foss where she describes their home atrium. So atrium may be possible for us after all.

I have ordered the I Learn About Jesus, along with three other books Little Saints recommends from Paperbackswap. For good measure, I ordered a used copy of The Religious Potential of the Child from Abebooks, and for fun have a bid on the first of the Catholic Children's Treasure Box Books from eBay. Don't get me started on the pile of books I'm reading right now.

The summers are hot in Arizona. What else do we have to do but read? ;-) Seriously though, if you have any suggestions or advice for me regarding homeschooling and/or religious education I would love to have it.