30 November 2009

Eleven Weeks!

Baby Alex turned 11 weeks old on Thanksgiving!
(SHHH! Don't tell-we took this one on Friday!)
Winter is upon us! I think she looks cozy in her hat and bunting!
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Our Long Weekend was filled with:



And Ornaments! (Special thanks to my niece, Clare, who helped me cook on Wednesday and came back for more fun Thursday night and Friday!)

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27 November 2009

Happy Birthday, Daddy!

I wanted to post this earlier in the day, but I have had one of the worst migraines I've had in a while. I am disappointed that it wasn't up earlier, and with the way I feel, I am not going to do it justice.

My Dad would have been 72 today. I feel so blessed to have him as a father. He always gave such a wonderful example of parenting, but also of how a husband should treat his wife. My parents had a beautiful marriage that truly had God at the center of it. It really came as no surprise that they died 19 months apart as I am sure they could not wait to be together again.

My Dad also had such a strong faith. He was a permanent deacon in the Catholic Church, and celebrated the 25th anniversary of his ordination shortly before his death.

Daddy was a wonderful father and Nonno (grandfather). His presence is still felt in our family. He has two grandsons named after him (my son, Peter is one), and quite a few took Peter for their Confirmation names.

Happy Birthday, Daddy! I love you!

25 November 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I have many things to be thankful for this year!

First and foremost, I am thankful for my faith. I am not sure how people make it in this world without faith, and I am glad that I'll never have to know.

I am thankful for a wonderful husband who loves me unconditionally.

I am thankful for my son, Peter, with his sweet disposition, who always has a hug for his Mama.

I am thankful for my son, Drew, who has such a love of life and always has a smile on his face.

I am thankful for my son, Michael, who at 4, tells me he loves me many times a day.

I am thankful for my baby, Alexandra, who fills me with such joy every time she snuggles with me.

I am thankful for my two babies in Heaven. I can't wait for us to meet again one day.

I am thankful to have been blessed with 33 and 35 years with my Mom and Dad. I am thankful that I can now say that instead of being jealous that others have more time with their parents.

I am thankful to be from a big Italian family, even when we are sometimes crazy!

I am thankful for my real life friends, who all know who they are, but especially thankful for Lisa, Sydney and Michelle who love and accept me as I am, faults and all.

I am also thankful for my blogging friends. Even though we have never met in person, I feel so blessed to know all of you, and thankful for what you have added to my life and my faith.

God bless you all, and may you have an abundant Thanksgiving!

24 November 2009

Advent Activity

My first grader, Drew, brought home an Advent activity. He has a page with the 4 Advent candles, each divided into 7 sections. For each day that he completes the task for that week, he gets to color in a section.

Here are the tasks:
Week 1-Pick up clothes and keep room in order (this will be hard for him).
Week 2-Do what he is told the first time he is told to do it.
Week 3-He will not argue or pout when he doesn't get his way.
Week 4-Be helpful around the house without asking.

I have decided to copy it for the other 2 boys to participate. I am thinking that it is going to be a great Advent!

23 November 2009

Something new

Hours are exploding at work, so I am going to make this a quick post! It's been a while since I've talked about my former teaching job. Before I had kids, I taught the Deaf and hard of hearing (yes, I can sign). Tonight, while I was teaching-which again is only via headset and microphone, I had a hearing impaired student. Yes, that's right hearing impaired. Yes, it is mild, but, this is really not the ideal situation. I'd like to strangle the person at her school who signed her up. Hello? She can't hear that well, and Hello? we teach via mainly auditory means. OK, vent over. Have a nice night! :)

22 November 2009

So proud!

My nephew's team won the State Championship on Friday. It was a tough game, but I am so glad we were there for it. Although John didn't score the only touchdown of the game (the score was 7-0), he had a lot of yards. He even got the game ball. BUT, that's is not the only reason why I am proud of him.

I am proud of my freshly turned 18 year old godson for something far more important. I am proud of him for the man he is becoming. I am proud of him for wearing pink gloves on the field in honor of his mother who is a breast cancer survivor. I am proud of him for wearing my father's name on one of his black marks under his eyes. And under the other eye? A.M.D.G.-For the greater glory of God!

Friday was a wonderful day, and I am so proud of him!

19 November 2009

Recipe Swap Thursday-Thanksgiving Edition!

It's time to share our favorite Thanksgiving recipes!!!
Please grab the code for the button from my sidebar to link back to me.
Leave a comment with your link so we can check out your post!

Pumpkin Pie
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2 large eggs
1 can (15 oz.) LIBBY'S® 100% Pure Pumpkin
1 can (12 fl. oz.) NESTLÉ® CARNATION® Evaporated Milk
1 unbaked 9-inch (4-cup volume) deep-dish pie shell
Whipped cream (optional)

MIX sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger and cloves in small bowl. Beat eggs in large bowl. Stir in pumpkin and sugar-spice mixture. Gradually stir in evaporated milk.POUR into pie shell.BAKE in preheated 425° F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350° F; bake for 40 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack for 2 hours. Serve immediately or refrigerate. Top with whipped cream before serving.

This is the recipe off of the Libby's site, but I have used it for years. It is so good!
Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!!!

17 November 2009

Recipe Swap Reminder

This Thursday, let's share our favorite Thanksgiving recipes! YUM!

16 November 2009

Happy Birthday, Mama!

My Mom would have been 70 today. We are celebrating her life here on earth as well as her life now in Heaven. When she became ill, she decided that she would offer up her suffering so that her grandchildren (which number 26 on earth right now with more by her side in Heaven) would never lose their faith. Suffer she did, but what a precious gift to leave her grandchildren!

I am ecstatic that you finally have a granddaughter to carry on your name, Mom! We will make sure she knows what a wonderful, faith-filled woman you were while here on earth, and surely are in Heaven! We love you, Mama!

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15 November 2009

So proud!

My godson's team is going to State! It was an absolute shut-out! John's team won 35-0, with my nephew scoring 3 touchdowns!

Thank you all so much for the kind words on my trust post! Alex was an angel for her grandparents! In fact, they are going to watch her and Michael when we make the road trip to State this Friday!

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13 November 2009


Why is trust so hard? I am talking about trusting God. He has never let me down, and yet, why in times of stress, turmoil, or indecision do I turn away and decide to do things myself? I am working on finding an answer to this, and yet, it is so hard!

Take, for example, when I was pregnant with Michael. I had lost my Mom only 5 months before I got pregnant, and my Dad, who was in the final stages of cancer had taken a turn for the worse about 4 months before Michael was born. I was constantly asking medical professionals, "How long does he have?" My poor brother, the oncologist, I would ask him this over and over. When we moved Dad to hospice in late June of 2005, Sal told me he would be surprised if Dad was there at Labor Day. I was due in mid-September! This absolutely could not happen! Guess what? It didn't! God, in his infinite wisdom, gave us 9 more months with Dad. Daddy was here to see Michael born and baptized. He was also here to see my nephew, Peter, score the game winning field goal in TCU's bowl game that year. My point? Instead of trusting that God would do what was best, I spent much of that 9 months wanting to know. Like any of us truly know when we will die. I must trust.

Then, there is this past year with a whirlwind of changes for just about everyone due to the economy. I lost my supervisory role at work and had to take the accompanying pay cut. I have been very disheartened at work. Feeling like I have been demoted to "just a teacher." I need to trust and let this go. Teaching is where my passion is, right? So I need to embrace that. Again, it comes down to trust. My hours were cut to just about zero. I was thinking that I needed to figure this out. That I needed to solve this. I began to look for other opportunities. Again, God knew just what I needed. This week, I have seen an increase in hours that is just about where we need me to be. I must trust.

Now, there is this little issue of my nephew's game tomorrow night. My precious Alexandra does not like being separated from her Mama. We had arranged for my in-laws to stay with her and Michael. Last night, she screamed while I taught. I could hear her fussing most of the 3 hours I was teaching. I came out and told Andy that I can't go to the game. Yet, I need to go. John is my godson, and a senior. If they win, they go to State next week. If they don't, this is his last game. He is hoping to play next year, but if it is very far, it is unlikely that I would be able to go see him play. I have been trying to come up with a solution on my own. Could I bundle her up? (too cold and it is supposed to rain tomorrow) I could stay home, Andy could stay home. Then, I said to Andy, what if we take 2 cars. If I settle her down for a nap before we go, she'd sleep half the time. If she gets frantic, your Mom could call and one of us could come home? When I called to propose this to my mother-in-law, she told me we could take one car. She promised Alex would be fine. God knew I needed to hear that. Again, I must trust. I must pray and I must trust. All will be well.

7 Quick Takes Friday!

1. I'd like to start out with a Happy 18th Birthday to my nephew (and godson), John. I am so proud of the man he is becoming. He is Senior Class President, a great student and a faithful Catholic who was confirmed earlier this year. Last summer, he spent 3 weeks working with the poor in the Dominican Republic. He is also an AWESOME football player. His team will play in the 4th round of playoffs tomorrow, and if they win, they will go to State. This past week, he scored 3 touchdowns, and was chosen Athlete of the week. Can you tell I am proud of him?

2. Speaking of my nephew, we are slated to go to his game tomorrow night. My mother-in-law is supposed to watch Michael and Alex. We may have to rethink this. I have been teasing that Alex cries when Mama isn't there. Well, it has gotten pretty bad. Last night, I taught for 3 hours, and she screamed almost the entire time. I told Andy that I would stay home, but he wants me to go even though she'll cry (he'd stay home). It is supposed to be cold and rainy, otherwise, I'd put her in the carrier and take her with me. I haven't seen John play this season, but I am very conflicted.

3. Hours have increased at work. I am still not being scheduled, but if I tell them I am available, I get added the day before. This really is a great thing, and I am very thankful, but I am kind of wiped out after this week.

4. I've been kind of light on blogging lately. I just don't know what to write about. When I started this blog (before I had made bloggy friends), I wrote. I wrote about education, my faith, politics. Now, I feel like I just don't do that anymore. I'll come up with an idea and then decide not to write about it. Guess it's a blogging funk.

5. Very thankful for all of my wonderful friends, IRL and the blogosphere. So happy that I have a wonderful group of women around me and we can support each other and pray for each other. I just think it's kind of awesome.

6. I am hoping to do some baking this weekend. I just feel like I am coming up on the short end of everything lately. As I write this, I am looking at 3 loads of laundry that I need to fold. Seems like I have to get more scheduled once again. *sigh*

7. Finally, a picture to share. Alexandra turned 2 months this week, and we are so thrilled to have her in our family!

More quick takes at Jen's.

12 November 2009

Recipe Swap Thursday

It's time for another edition of Recipe Swap! I am really enjoying what I am seeing on everyone's blogs! This week, I am sharing an old favorite that I just found the recipe for on sparkpeople.com. If you share a recipe, grab the button on my sidebar for your post and then leave a link to your post in the comment section!

Rustic Lemon-Onion Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves

1 tsp dried thyme plus 1 small bunch of fresh thyme, chopped

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

4 Tbs of olive oil

1/4 cup of flour

1 red onion, thinly sliced

1/4 cup of white wine

1 cup chicken broth

3 lemons, juiced

1 to 2 Tbs butter

Season chicken with dried thyme and salt and pepper. Heat a large saute pan over medium heat and add the oil. Dredge the chicken in flour, add to the hot oil and saute until cooked through. Set chicken aside to rest on plate tented with foil.In same saute pan, over low heat, add onions and fresh thyme and cook until aromatic.In a measuring cup, measure out wine, if using and broth and add the lemon juice. Turn the heat to high, and de-glaze the pan with the broth mixture until starting to reduce.Remove pan from heat and finish the sauce by whisking in the butter. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

With Thanksgiving coming, next week, let's share our favorite Thanksgiving side dishes!

11 November 2009

Almost Wordless Wednesday

Alex turned 2 months old yesterday! I took her for her check-up and she weighed in at 10 pounds, 11 ounces. She is certainly making up for lost time!

This is a hat I loomed for Michael. I wish I had added a few more rows at the top to make it a little bigger. He does love it, though, and asked if he could wear it to bed!
Don't forget Recipe Swap Thursday Tomorrow!!!

09 November 2009

God is good!

Here is the update on Stellan! God is so good! Warning: it will make you cry in a good way!!


Can you please keep Stellan in your prayers? I've written about him before, and he is having heart surgery as we speak He was not in good shape before the surgery, and had flat lined earlier this morning. I have never met the family, but my heart aches for anyone having to go through this.

06 November 2009


that your child has watched too much TV:

Michael, "Mom! You know they make a snuggie for your dog!"

Me, "Honey, we don't have a dog."

Michael, "Yes, I do! Puppy, Other Puppy and Baby Puppy." (Three of his stuffed animals)

Me, "Well, we're not buying them snuggies,"

Michael, "Then, can I have a Pillow pet?"

Here's hoping he feels better, and we will turn off the TV!

7 Quick Takes Friday!

1. Andy discovered a new tool on Picasa. It has face recognition technology. So, it separates people into their own files. It even could detect baby and adult photos of the same individual and put them together. For the most part, everyone in my family (extended included) ended up in their own files. The exception was Michael, who landed in a lot of files, which proves to me that he is a mix of both sides of out family.

2. A photo of me as a a baby did land in Alex's folder. I guess she looks like her Mama:

3. Work continues to frustrate me. I was scheduled only an hour this week. I mean, seriously, do they really think that we can call that income? I am very blessed to be able to teach from home, and have a job, but hours need to go up.
4. In light of the fact that I have no hours, I found a new site called oDesk. It links you with companies looking for people to complete tasks for them like data entry. The issue I am having is that my resume makes me look like I have no experience. All of my work experience on there is teaching related. The data entry work I did dates back to the early 90's.
5. Michael got sick at dinner last night. He threw up just that one time, but still doesn't seem quite right. It led Andy and I to decide that I needed to cancel my plans for tomorrow night (my niece's play) because he will be gone too, and I couldn't let my sister babysit Michael and Alex if we have something going through the house.
6. My nephew's football team plays in the semi-finals tomorrow. If they win, they go to State. This is a big deal because their high school has not gone in a long time. My nephew is a senior, so I am hoping for him that they win. This game is where Andy, Peter and Drew will be tomorrow night. Go Hilltoppers!
7. I host a Recipe Swap on Thursdays. I am ecstatic for the readers who continue to participate, but would love to have more! I just love hearing new recipes, and look for new ideas!
For more Quick Takes, pop over to Jen's.

05 November 2009

Recipe Swap Thursday

It's time to share recipes! Have one you want to share? Go ahead and grab the button on my sidebar, then go ahead and leave a link to your post in the comments.

Potato Coquettes

4-6 C cold mashed potatoes
3 eggs, slightly beaten
1 C dry bread crumbs
¾ C Romano or Asiago cheese
½ C finely chopped onions
¼ C chopped parsley

Mix all ingredients together. If too soft, add more breadcrumbs. Shape into oblong fingers or round patties. Dip into more beaten egg, and then into more breadcrumbs. Fry in oil. Drain on paper towels.

02 November 2009

Halloween 2009

Alex tired out long before the festivities were over! She loves to snuggle next to me like this!

Here are my trick-or-treaters: Indiana Jones, Anakin Skywalker and Super Mario!

Finally, here is Alex's 7 week old picture

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01 November 2009

From today's homily:

Trying to clean while the children are home is like trying to shovel snow while it's still snowing.

I can so relate. *sigh*