Thursday, March 31, 2011

Little Thoughts

~~~~~
Andrew:  "There was a farmer who had a dog, and Andrew was his name-O.  E-I-N-G-O, E-I-N-G-O, E-I-N-G-O, and Andrew was his name-O!"

=)
~~~~~
  Me:  "Hey Rach, are you ready for a nap?"
Rachel:  "No, ma'am....Natalie needs a nap!"
~~~~~
The other night Natalie was finishing up her schoolwork while I was fixing dinner.  She decided, while she was on a roll, she would do her math page for the next day.....fast forward to the next morning.  I reminded her that she didn't have any math that day, because she had done her work the night before.  She got all excited and said,

"awesome!  from now on, I'm going to do my math page the night before, so that I never have to do math in school again!!!"

The funny thing is that she *actually* thinks she beat the system on this one...I'm not even going to bother explaining that the joke is actually on her ;)
~~~~~

Monday, March 28, 2011

Getting Braver...

I've been really wanting to try my hand at making a fifty's style soda fountain dress for awhile now.  So, while spending time in Lafayette a week or so ago, I did some therapeutic shopping at Joann's.  I found this fabric to go with the Simplicity 6587 pattern (all on sale, plus a coupon, of course!):
My sister says this fabric will look really good for this pattern...we'll see!  She does have good taste, though
I think I am going to try dress A (which is the green one), and add the sash from dress B (the blue one).  I hope it comes out ok!!!  I'm pretty nervous about all those button holes...ELEVEN all together O_o:

My Favorite Time of Day

It's funny how God works.  A few years ago if you had asked me what my favorite time of day was, I would most definitely would NOT have said "oh, right after dinner when I am cleaning the kitchen."  Tonight, however, I found myself at the kitchen sink, elbow deep in warm, sudsy water.  I finished up the dishes, and had just moved on to wiping down the table, counters, and stove top when I stopped and looked around at my family.  And then it hit me...this is my favorite time of the day!  As much as I grumble and complain about all the dirty dishes, when I looked around tonight, I felt nothing but gratitude for my life.  And while I've yet to figure out why, God is SO generous to me.  I sat there and looked at my family....Rachel was sitting quietly by the fridge, playing with her alphabet magnets; Andrew was building some kind of creation on the couch out of Tupperware; Natalie was sweetly helping her Daddy put together some new swivel chairs for the island in the kitchen; and Luke was peacefully sleeping in his baby chair.  I really wish I had pictures to post for all these lovely memories, but right about the time my sentiments welled up so much that I was starting to tear up, and I decided to run and get my camera, Rachel started pelting the alphabet magnets across the kitchen; Andrew saw me break out the camera and started jumping in circles around me asking "can I see?  can I see?  can I see?...."; Phil started fussing at Natalie for getting in the way; and then all three of the older kids started fighting over who got to sit in the bar stool.  Ah, well, back to life!  At least little Luke was still sleeping, and I found time to get this blog post in ;)  I did, however, manage to get this one picture of our evening:

Rach in our new bar stools =)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Holy Chicken Stock, Batman!

Seriously, though, I have been on a stock making kick lately!  It's the best =)  I loosely follow the method I found here at the Fabulous Foods Blog.  She suggests saving vegetable scraps and meat bones in the freezer until you are ready to make a batch of stock, which I just LOVE, because I don't really have time to make stock at the drop of a hat.  So, I can keep my ingredients in the freezer until I can set aside some time to do it.  And really, it's not that time consuming.  I mean, you just put everything in a pot, cover with water, and simmer for a few hours. Basically, I put whatever vegetable scraps I've been saving into a pot (about a gallon sized freezer bag worth), then I put the meat bones (or leave them out if I'm making veggie stock), then I season with a little salt, pepper, a couple of bay leaves, and some fresh parsley.  Simmer that for a few hours, then strain, cool, and put into containers for the freezer.  The worst part is putting the stock in containers.  I recommend using storage containers that have measuring tick marks on the side, which I got from my oh so generous neighbor this year for Christmas.  And, my mother-in-law recently gave me a carton of Blessed Salt (is that supposed to be capitalized???), and I use that, so the stock is good for the body and the soul ;).  Speaking of my mother-in-law, she also saves the juice/stock when she cooks a ham for things like red beans and such.  So far, I've tried vegetable, shrimp, and chicken stock, but I am going to start saving both beef and pork bones, so hopefully I can try that soon....I think you are supposed to roast those first.  And let me tell you...that shrimp stock makes for a fantastic gumbo!!  I have a batch of chicken stock brewing as I type, so get thee to the kitchen and make some yourself! 

Sunday, March 20, 2011

What's in Your Tea Kettle?

...and I mean besides the toy pirate ship cannons and plastic screwdriver, of course ;)


The sad part is that after I found them in there, I just put the lid back on and walked away =).  It is Sunday, after all...it's supposed to be a day of rest!!! ;)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sometimes God Allows It....

We were in the car the other day, and I was explaining to the kids what our alms giving project for the poor was going to be.  I was telling them the items we would put in the bags, how they could help pick them out, and that they could help assemble the bags.  Then I went on to explain how we would distribute them, and that we should pray for all those people that we give one to during Lent.  I told them that these people were homeless, and Natalie asked what that meant, so I told her it means they don't have a home; they have no where to live.  She said, "where do they sleep at night?"  I told her I wasn't sure, but probably under the bridge we pass by on our way to and from Mass.  Then Andrew asked why they had no home.  Natalie said, "sometimes God allows people to suffer."  At this point, my ears really perked up, because I was curious how she would explain this.  She just kept saying that God allows them to suffer over and over, and I could tell she was really wrestling with why God would allow such a thing.  So, I jumped in the conversation, and said gently, "sometimes God allows people to suffer, and we don't understand why...He just allows it, and it's part of His plan, and it's not something we understand, but we should trust Him, and pray for those people."  Natalie said, "yeah!  sometimes God allows people to suffer because it helps them get to Heaven faster.  And, sometimes He allows people to suffer because they have been making bad choices.  But, people can change their minds and stop making bad choices.   But, it's hard to change your mind and start making good choices if you've been making bad choices for a long time.  And, when we die, if we've been making bad choices for a long time, it will be hard to change your mind and tell God you are sorry, because Satan will be there tempting you to say 'no' to God, and it will be harder to say 'yes' to God if you have been making lots of bad choices, so we should always try to make good choices."  At the end of this long monologue, I said, "that's pretty much it, Natalie."  Wow!  I guess that is why we are called to have the simple faith of a child.  I just hope this stays with her through her teenage years!  Needless to say, we are sticking with our current religion program ;)
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