31 December 2008

New Year's Eve!

We have not a thing planned for tonight. We have come to watch the ball drop in New York (an hour earlier than us) and call it New Year's. I actually have to work tonight from 5-10 but at least I am not teaching (doing my team leading position instead) which means I just need to have my computer at my side. We will have snacks with the kids-very low key.
May 2009 be good to all of you! If you are going out, stay safe! Thank you all once again for coming on this journey with me. I look forward to next year! God Bless!

29 December 2008

Please Pray for Stellan!

On my sidebar is a button for My Charming Kids. MckMama is a wonderful wife and mother who almost lost her baby, Stellan, while in utero to heart failure. He was born healthy and is truly one of God's miracles. Tonight, baby Stellan is in the hospital fighting to breathe due to a horrible case of RSV. Please pray for the family, especially for Stellan. You can find more info here.

I must have been good!

My dear husband, Andy was very good to me this year!
He gave me gifts to keep my creative juices flowing!

I got all of my looms! I had only asked for the long set, but am excited to give the round looms
a try. I also received a book with different stitches, as well as, some crocheting supplies.

Andy also got me some more items to feed my cake decorating hobby (I think he is asking for cake!).
I received the tilting turntable, and assorted goodies that I can't wait to try out.
I am planning to take course 2 in the Spring!

This is my latest project. My sister loved the blue scarf. This one is for my sister-in-law.
I told Andy that I am going to need a yarn allowance in the budget in 2009!

27 December 2008


Twelve years ago today, I became your wife.
I didn't understand I would love you more with each passing day, month, year.
I am so blessed to have you as my husband, partner, best friend.
Thank you for always loving me!

As an aside to everyone else...notice the ball and chain? Andy couldn't take it off until he serenaded me (he doesn't like to sing in front of other people)!
I love you, honey!
Happy Anniversary!

24 December 2008

Merry Christmas!

May you all have a Blessed Christmas! Thank you so much for taking this journey with me this year! I look forward to reading and writing about all of our Christmas celebrations! Enjoy the holiday!

22 December 2008

My first scarf!

I finished my first project on my knitting loom. I really am pleased with it. I am off to do another...Christmas is coming!

The ornament of 2008 is...

It's an army of reindeer!
We ended up making 70 ornaments this year.

Here is the finished product.
I apologize to my blogging friends who got the ornaments without the bow.
We had inspiration strike Saturday night.
I think it finishes it off nicely!
Merry Christmas!

20 December 2008

Snow Day!

Yesterday was supposed to be the last day of school before break. We got 12 inches of snow (actually 13 in my suburb), and school was canceled. So what did we do? We took a nap...

We played in the snow. We have a slight incline behind our garage, so the boys did some tubing. Drew loves to go sledding!

Peter loves the snow too! He stayed out the longest-about 2 hours!

This is Michael's first year to really play in the snow. He was only out for about 15 minutes. Daddy pushed him in the tube, and he slid out and got a face full of snow! He. was. done.

In the afternoon, we made cutouts and decorated them. Some of you have commented on the abundance of cookies. I have a really big family (my Michael is the 25th grandchild on my side of the family), and we host Christmas Eve. Cookies are dessert. Leftover cookies freeze really well, too!
After 13 inches, you'd think we'd be done tonight. Oh no! We are expecting another 5 tonight and then we have windchill warnings for the next 36 hours (supposed to be -25 degree windchill). We went to Mass tonight. We are staying in tomorrow.

19 December 2008

Friday Fun with Milk!

Is this genetic or learned?
For more photo fun, check out Candid Carrie!

18 December 2008

Baking and Crafting!

I didn't make this one! Drew's class made gingerbread houses last week, and I wanted to share a picture of what it looked like before the boys ate it!

These, however, I did make. Coconut macaroons-YUM! Michael helped with the cherries.

And my gingerbread men-Michael helped with these too! We are expecting a snowstorm tonight/tomorrow with 8-12 inches of snow. I expect that schools will be off, so we will do our regular cutouts then.

This is my new craft (and becoming an addiction!). It is a knitting loom. I started this scarf last night. I hope to go buy more chunky yarn today! I will post pictures of the finished product. I should be doing Christmas cards, but this is so much more fun!

16 December 2008

A trip to the post office!

I had to go to the post office today. I hate the post office. In fact, I try to avoid it whenever possible. I really only need stamps this time of year for cards, and I got those weeks ago. The reason for my trip? I had a handful of little packages to send out to a couple of blogging friends. Not saying what it was (and for those of you I asked for addresses, no posting about it-if you were going to-until after my Monday post!)...

Here was my pleasant surprise-it is really cheap to ship to Australia! I have never sent anything overseas other than letters to my parents in the US while I lived in Rome for a semester in college (there was no Internet or email then). That was 20 years ago-I have no idea what it cost, but that was cheap too! OK, so to send a package in a small padded envelope to Australia only cost $1.40! I was thinking at least $10! I was told it would only take 6-10 days to get there...Therese let me know if that's true!

15 December 2008

Ornaments and a tree!

This is our ornament for 2007. We made this cute little Rudolph out of circles of wood and twigs (for the antlers) from tree pruning that Andy had done the summer before. The nose and snout were made out of modeling clay. I burned a sheet full of them because Andy had left them in the oven too cool, and I pre-heated the oven the next day not knowing they were still in there! I had set the sheet out on a snowbank to cool, and every once in a while I still find a charred snout outside!

We didn't make these, but I wanted to post them. We buy the boys a new ornament every year. This is this year's ornament- O, Holy Night! One of my favorite carols by the way!

Here is the whole tree!

HMMM...wonder what this year's ornament will be? Check back next Monday for the reveal!

Marie Antoinette Award!

I received this award from Therese at Aussie Coffee Shop. Thanks for thinking of me!

The rules for this award are to display the icon and send it on to 7 other bloggers I feel are real in who they are.

I pass this award onto

Sydney at Diapers and Deadlines
Hope at Reflections of Hope
Evy at Yes, They are All Mine
Sue at Susie's Homemade
+JMJ+ at Totus Tuus Family
Kim at It's a Dog and Pony Show
Nancy at Be Not Afraid

Thank you ladies for keeping it real!

10 Favorite Living Catholics

Therese at Aussie Coffee Shop tagged me for the following meme...

I would like to make this a meme, as I'm eager to learn what the rest of you are thinking. The rules are to select ten of the most fascinating (living) Catholics for 2008. Then, tag at least five people for the meme.

Here's my list:

1. Pope Benedict XVI
2. Mother Angelica
3. Archbishop Timothy Dolan
4. My sister
5. Scott Hahn
6. Fr. Frank Pavone
7. Fr. Corapi
8. Therese
9. +JMJ+
10. Cassie

The bloggers on the list are Catholic women who have really been an inspiration to me! Thank you for making me want to be a better Catholic and a better Catholic mother!

I am tagging whomever wants to join in! Please let me know you're participating-I would love to read your list!

14 December 2008

A Day of Fun and Baking!

Today, we made our trek to my in-laws to help them prepare for Christmas.
Andy and the boys went with my father-in-law to go get the tree while my mother-in-law and I did
our annual baking.

I was lucky enough to catch this shot of Andy helping Michael hang an ornament. Andy is such a wonderful father! I love hoe patient he is with the boys. I need to take a lesson from him!

We baked so much, I couldn't get them all in one picture! We made peanut butter blossoms, amaretti, magic cookie bars (like some, Kim?!?)...

Italian sprinkle cookies, Mexican wedding cakes and peppermint bark. I still have to do my cut-outs, gingerbread and macaroons. I'll be working on those tomorrow!

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13 December 2008

When it rains, it pours!

I am talking about work. After the care of my children, my other job is to teach online in a remediation program. I teach third through ninth grade reading and math online. I love it! I have been able to stay at home with my kids. In the evenings, when my husband comes home, we have dinner as a family, and I am off to teach, in my room, in my jammies (because they only hear me!). I have been with the company for almost 3 years, and find it to be a great fit for us. I am working my way up the management ladder, but I do love being able to use my degree and teach.

So the raining and pouring bit? We have a peak season because of contracts we have with school districts. During peak, we have more hours than we know what to do! My first year it ran from February until July. Last year, I didn't really go through peak because I was helping out with the new classroom platform that we have, but I know it started in January. This year, it has hit. This week. I have two other positions in the company, so when it isn't peak, I have only a handful of teaching hours and I focus on my other duties. Right now, I have a lot of work, and a lot of teaching! I love it, but boy, is it crazy!

12 December 2008

Friday Fun with a Glue Gun!

HMM...wonder what they are working on???

Could it be this year's Christmas ornament?
Only time will tell!
Check out more fun at Candid Carrie!

11 December 2008

In the doghouse...

I got this video in an email. Please follow the link. I think you'll like it!

Pay it forward update!

Gramma 2 Many, Bird,Frizzy and Ya-Ya; and Luanne are the recipients of my PIF. Their goodies will come sometime in the next year. I have contacted Gramma, but can the other two please email me your addresses so I know where to send your gifts?
Bummed you didn't get into this PIF? Check out the their blogs, as they will be doing it now! Good luck!

10 December 2008

Pay it forward!

This is how it works:
Pay It Forward Exchange is based on the concept of the movie "Pay it forward".
I will send a hand made gift to the first three people who leave a comment to this post on my blog requesting to join the PIF exchange.

All the gifts will be made and posted out 'sometime within the next year'. How exciting to not know when your surprise package will arrive!

What you need to do in return, is pay it forward by making the same promise on your blog.
This Exchange is only open to those with active websites or blogs.
I'd love for you to join me! Will you? Other comments are welcome, but only the first three will be my Pay It Forward recipients.

Too funny!

I don't mean to copy, but this video put such a smile on my face! Thanks to Cassie for sharing it!

08 December 2008

One Step Forward, Ten Steps Back

I have blocked out potty training Peter and Drew. I know that my mother-in-law tried to tell me Andy was trained at 6 months, but admitted it was more like 3 when Peter finally trained at 3. I know that I haven't ever worried about it because, after all, it's not like they'll go to kindergarten not trained. Both Peter and Drew were fully trained somewhere between 3 and 3 1/2.

And then there was Michael. We've offered for a long time. At 3 years and 3 months, though, I am ready for him to be done. I started seeing glimmers of hope this weekend. He was dry all day and went on his own. That's my one step forward. Now the 10 steps back...

This morning, after we returned from the grocery store, I noticed he was starting to go #2. I thought I missed the opportunity. I cleaned him up and sent him off to the bathroom in case he had more to go. I continued to unpack groceries. Suddenly, I heard Michael screaming. I rushed to check on him and the toilet was overflowing. Not a little. A LOT. Water to the rim, all over the bathroom floor and out onto the hall carpeting. He was crying that he broke the toilet. I removed him to the family room, and get the wet/dry vac. I get all of the water up, and lowered the level in the toilet so I could plunge. The toilet is fine, the carpet is fine-all cleaned up!

Then I went to clean up Michael. I praised him because he had indeed gone #2 on the potty! His response, "Mom, I am never going poop on the toilet again!" Ten steps back...

Ornaments, Week 3!

In 2005, we came up with this little angel. As usual, one of us (this year, it was me) came up with a base idea, and then we tweaked it. You can't see it from here, but we stacked together 4 craft sticks to give her some depth. The rest is just paint and material. I think she's pretty cute!

This was the ornament from 2006. We used a 3 inch mirror which we painted white and sprinkled with embossing powder (again, we like embossing powder better than glitter because it is so fine). The nose is orange clay shaped like a carrot (Andy has the patience of a saint to do those!). Then the ear muffs are made from a pipe cleaner and green and gold puffs. I really like this one, and it was so easy!

07 December 2008

Christmas Decorations!

As I said in my earlier post, we went driving to see the Christmas decorations last night. In another neighborhood, nearby, there is a house that has phenomenal decorations set to music. He has a set of four songs that rotate on his own radio station (signs tell you what station to go to). We took some video of it, and this is one of them. You even get to hear my sons' commentary (couldn't keep them quiet!). Enjoy!

A busy St. Nicholas' Day! Part Two

So, we started our trek to the trees. There were sledding hills along the way!

Dad and the boys before the tree was cut.

The official cutting!

Later in the day, we went to a party with St. Nicholas at our parish.
The boys had a lot of fun, and even got a chocolate coin!
After the party, we went to 5 o'clock Mass.
The only downer to the evening was that I fell going down the steps to our
Church basement. Boy, am I glad we didn't have to get up early this morning-
I am sore. I'm fine, but I fell down about 5 steps, so I kind of ache all over.

After Mass, we took the boys out for pizza, and went driving looking at
Christmas decorations.
There is a neighborhood in town that decorates specifically
to raise money for childhood cancer.
We had a great day!

A busy St. Nicholas' Day! Part One

We always go to hunt our tree on the second weekend of Advent. Yes, I said hunt! We go to a tree farm, traipse through the trees, pick one and cut it down. Well, Andy cuts it down. Here is the recap of our day.

Michael fell asleep on our way to the tree farm.
This picture was too cute not to post!

This was the part of the trip where I said, "Honey, these pre-cut trees look nice."
You see, I spent most of my life with artificial. My parents switched to real for a few years when I was
an adult. It was always bought at a tree lot.
Then I got the lecture about how we were creating memories for the boys.
Point taken. I should stop at this point and say that it was 18 degrees. It was windy with blowing snow.
The windchill was probably down near zero.
I don't own snowpants-don't need to add puffiness that to my frame.
I. was. cold.

Peter stopped to talk to the snowman.

This was on our way to the cold, cold tree farm.
It was still sheltered. No blowing snow-yet.
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06 December 2008

Happy Birthday!

In addition to today being the feast of St. Nicholas, it is my husband, Andy's birthday. Honey, you came into this world 39 years ago today, and I thank God that He has blessed me to have you as my partner in life. The times are not always easy, but they are filled with love. You are a wonderful husband and father! Happy Birthday! I love you!

05 December 2008

Fun with a polar bear! F X 4

This was from our trip to the ornament shop!

For more fun, check out Candid Carrie!

03 December 2008

Special Intention

If you have a moment today, please say a prayer for a special intention for a member of my family. Thanks so much! God Bless!

Wordless Wednesday-Cozy at home on a Snowy Day!

02 December 2008

Advent Musings

Please go over to my friend Nikki's blog to watch a cool advent video-lots of food for thought! Also, wish her well-she is about to leave for China to adopt her newest baby, Juliana Therese (love that last name!)!

Happy Advent!

01 December 2008

Another Ornament

This is our ornament from 2004. As I said last week, this is probably my favorite thus far! The tree is made of two triangles. They are painted green and then sprinkled with embossing powder which is finer than glitter. The star was painted and attached as was the little ornaments and the bead work.

This was the first ornament that Peter helped with. He would come home from K4, and after lunch while Drew was napping, he would help me paint. It was great, messy fun!

On the snow front, we only got about 4-5 inches of snow last night. I was hoping for an all out storm to close school, but it was just enough to be messy! Areas to the north and west of us (as close as 20 minutes away) got 8-10 inches and they are closed. Oh well!