Friday, May 28, 2010

7 Quick Takes


I don't know if I have 7 Quick Takes in me today.  I'm totally exhausted from last night's swim meet.  You'd think I'd be in better shape from walking up to the pool every day, but my job last night was exhausting mentally and physically.  I was Assistant Deck Manager, which I've never done before, so I had to learn how to wrangle all those snakes  swimmers and get them lined up in the proper order for their events.

I only had the first half.  How does the Deck Manager who worked the entire meet feel this morning?


Meg, the Little Princess, came down this morning around 7, and promptly fell asleep in the chair behind me.


I didn't eat dinner last night at the meet.  No pizza or Mac & Cheese for me, thanks.  I waited until I got home and it must have been 10:30 before I ate!  But it was good.  So was a shower and my bed.


Haven't gotten any fun projects done this week.  It has been a week of swim practice, picking up Pete early from school, running errands, and American Heritage Girls on the brain.  

I do have some things to show you, though.  Maybe next week!


Last day of school finally!  For the home schoolers and my high schooler.  Then we can start our summer work on Tuesday!  It won't be very different from the very casual school we've had all week.  Just a little math and reading and fun workbooks.

I'll let you know how that goes----historically we've been very bad about doing ANYTHING constructive during the summer.


Dh and I are going to a wedding on Monday.  We're soooo excited.  This is the first wedding of one of the children we've watched grow up.  We've known this young lady since we first moved here and she was 12!  Her parents, Pipster's godparents, are just about the first people we met when we moved to GA. I can't wait to see her walk down the aisle.

I might cry.


If you have a summer job for my 16 year-old, just let me know.  He desperately needs work and I'll send him to you.  He's a good sleeper, a good eater, and, when he's awake, a good worker.  An all around fine young man who would be a credit to your company.  

All reasonable offers will be considered.

Find more Quick Takes at Jen's Conversion Diary.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Swimming Daybook


Outside my window...Partly cloudy, still a little cool.  A gorgeous day ahead!

I am thinking...about what I'm going to get done today, if anything between errands.  For some reason, I don't count running around as getting things done.  Only what happens in my house "counts".  Really?

I am thankful for...this beautiful weather.

From the kitchen/school table...We're trying to get some schoolwork done in the early hours before swim team.  Sometimes it's difficult, like today, when Mom is very sleepy and wants to go back to bed.

From the kitchen...2 nights this week will be Swim Team Fare with the Mock Meet tonight and the first real meet on Thursday.  I'm heading slowly back in the direction of less sugar and more whole grains for the family.

I am wearing...Pajamas for a few more minutes!

I am creating...Not much, right now.

I am take Madden to school late today since there are no classes---it's graduation day.  A quick run to the store for sodas for the concession stand.  Shopping for a wedding present.  Pick up Madden from school.  Mock Meet.  Is that all?  Am I forgetting anything?

I am reading...too many decorating blogs!  (Still). And The 101 Dalmations.  Awesome.  Ramona Quimby, Age 8 to Princess and Pipster.

I am hoping...That I'll find the time to fold laundry and fill out AHG paperwork that needs to be mailed this week.

I am hearing...silence.  The teens are all still abed and the younglings have left for swim team.

Around the house...Lots of laundry to be folded.

One of my favorite things...Long summertime coffees with girlfriends.  Hint.  

A few plans for the rest of the week:  AHG organization, swim meets, and school.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...

TMax with his piano awards, including his 2nd gold cup.


More Daybooks Here!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Response to President Calderon

Was there no one there to hear him? I was practically out of my chair cheering for him!

Friday, May 21, 2010

7 Quick Takes


TMax and Pipster got new backpacks for Boy Scouts.  Tom's is pretty big!


First day of swim team practice this year!  Tom and Pip missed it because they had to go to Boy Scouts.

Her BFF helping with sit-ups.

Dry land warm-ups.  


Last night was the end-of-the-year banquet and awards ceremony for American Heritage Girls.  I enjoyed planning it and organizing the whole thing, even though that job should have been delegated to someone else.  I did not particularly enjoy standing in front of everyone being the M.C., making speeches and announcements, and generally being the Person In Charge.  What does that say about my personality?

Nevertheless, I did it.  I was probably blushing the whole time---I used to think that I could tell when I'm blushing, but evidently I can't because people tell me all the time now that I'm blushing and don't realize it.  Everyone said it was a success, so I'm happy.

I'm even happier that I had a really Good Night's Sleep last night!


I spend my Friday's in blog heaven now!  I discovered The Inspired Room a while back, and she has a linky party on Fridays where I just open 25 tabs on my computer and read about decorating and thrifty projects.  It's so much fun.  And it's perfect that it's on Fridays because I can just drop everything and go thrifting or yard-saling because I'm inspired.

No, you're right.  I can't (usually) drop everything, but the inspiration lives on in my heart, and it sure is fun to read the blogs for and hour!


Awaking to the sound of rain this morning was wonderful!  While the weather has been gorgeous and I've been too busy to enjoy it, I'm happy to have this nice soft, steady rain today.  It means I don't have to go to the garden today and water.  I think I'll just be staying indoors to read with my kids.  We've got The Hundred and One Dalmations from the library.  I've only read a couple of pages, but I'm charmed already.  I hear it is so much better than the Disney animated movie.


Tomorrow is clean-up day at the parish.  I think we'll be going, but I may skip out early and drop by our community garden.  There will be a man there talking about the importance of honey bees and beekeeping.  I'd love to hear it.


Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Mozart's Sonata in C, first movement

I missed the first few seconds of this one.

Plus we had really bad seats for this performance and you can only glimpse TMax in the reflection of the piano.

Enjoy!  He got exceptional applause for this even though he wasn't happy with his performance.

Perpetual Commotion

Here's TMax's 8-hand ensemble piece from his recital last night.  It was the finale of the evening and they did a great job.

Of the 3 pieces he played, this is the only one of which I got the whole thing on video.  I'm so lame.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Let There be Light!

I've been on the hunt recently for a "new" lamp at Goodwill.  Some of my family members were a little shocked and dismayed last year when we bought new furniture, matching coffee and end tables, and matching lamps.  It was just a little too....matchy-matchy.  We just weren't entirely comfortable with the "decorator" look and preferred the mismatched look we were used to.

Plus, the new lamps don't light the room very well with their dark shades.  I finally found what I was looking for at GW.

It had a hideous speckled finish, but a nice shape and details.

 I gave it a nice coat of aqua, and tried it out for a couple of days with a cream-colored lampshade.  I wasn't very happy with it because the shade seemed too yellow.  (I'm on the hunt for a white drum shade, though.)

I was trying to figure out how to glaze it and bring out the details without going shopping (again) to buy glaze.  I finally remembered my bin of acrylic craft paint and a little bottle of Extender that I thought would work.  The extender keeps the paint from drying too quickly so you have more "open" time to work with it.
 So, I did this to it.  It was very scary and I was very nervous!  I painted it black and then wiped off most of it.

 I like it much, much better now.  I even think the shade looks a lot better on it!

Sorry the pics are all so bad.  I don't think you can see the full effect in the last photo, but I hope you can see the difference between the plain aqua and the glaze!
Watcha think?

I'm linking up with Melissa at The Inspired Room, today!

Monday, May 17, 2010

J.Crew Knockoff

You know how you have those favorite shirts that you just love, and can't bear to part with when they start to get a little worn?

KT has this white one that she's extremely attached to.  So much so, that one of her male friends offered to buy her a new shirt because he didn't like the holes in it!

Then she discovered this tee at J.Crew, her favorite store, and instructions on how to copy it.  Seriously, if you have a daughter, you should bookmark that blog for future reference!

So she started by finding a fabric liked at JoAnn's.  She chose a linen-look that washes well and would fray nicely.  We bought 1/4 of a yard for $2, which was plenty. 

Then she experimented with flower shapes on paper.  Once she had designs she liked, she cut out a bunch from the material, and played around with different arrangments on her shirt, making sure to cover the holes and the pocket.

Because of tension issues with my sewing machine, and a lack of experience on her part, she decided it would be easier to sew them on by hand.  I like that idea because it meant I didn't have to deal with the machine problems and she wanted it to be her work, not mine.  It also gave it a more rustic, handmade look that KT likes a lot.

I think it turned out very nicely.  We love that $2 price tag, and I'd even go so far as to say that I like it better than the J. Crew version!

Cute as a button!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Prom Pics

My third child, Madden went to his first prom on Friday.  It was my third---KT having been to two, and Hitch having gone just his senior year.

This was the first time, however, that I was able to go see all the kids in their finery and be part of the group photos.

It was neat to see them all dressed up and to visit with some parents that I never see.

Just....what?....7 proms to go?

 And aren't those just the cutest shoes?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


We're in project mode here.  Not that I have a long list----just a short list and a desire to avoid tackling my real To-Do List!

Yesterday's inspiration came from going into the schoolroom/sewing room/craft room in search of fabric for KT's project (which I'll show you if she ever does it!).  While going through the stash, Little Princess found this old skirt of mine that I couldn't get rid of because I love the fabric!

She begged me to make a sundress out of it.  So we decided to drop everything and tackle this short project.

I opted to place the zipper on her side, under her arm, so we wouldn't have a seam in the center of the dress.  Plus, it would make it easier to get on and off without elastic.   I took her chest measurement and cut the skirt down one side, following the line of the skirt and leaving enough for a seam allowance.

While I sewed up the side, KT used the remnants to cut out 2 straps.  I sewed them inside out and she turned them.  I had to top-stitch to make them lie flat since there was a little bias stretch to them and they wanted to curl.

We had LP put on the dress so we could decide where to place the straps, then I sewed them on.  We discussed making them go straight over the shoulders or criss-crossed in the back, but Little Princess had her heart set on tying them behind her neck.

Hooray!  That was a quick project!  It only took about 30 minutes and she's thrilled with it.  Mom prefers a tee under it for modesty's sake, but it's fine for the pool.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

May Daybook

Outside my window...It promises to be a gorgeous day!  We've had some really lovely ones lately---unseasonably cool.

I am thinking...About my brave words last week concerning Mother's Day.  Yes, everything I said about the Communion of Saints is still true, but, boy, did I crash on Mother's Day.  I woke up in tears and cried all morning through Mass!  I wanted to go back to bed afterward and just ignore the day, but I also had a beautiful family to spend time with, so we went for a hike through one of the local parks.  It was a fun outing and wonderful to have everyone together.  The rest of the day was much better after that!

I am thankful family, and especially my husband who takes such good care of me!

From the kitchen table...We're memorizing Africa now with Visualize World Geography.  It's a daunting task, like eastern Europe was, and I don't think we learned that part very well.  Mostly, we just holding on and trying to get some work done each day until the end of May.

From the kitchen...After a sloppy shopping trip this past weekend because we were so busy, the cupboard is fairly bare.  This week will be a week of creative cooking!  

I am wearing...Shorts and an tank for my workout, and a knit poncho because it's chilly!  Brrrrrr.

I am creating...a list of projects for KT to help me with while she's home.

I am going...Nowhere today since Dh's car is in the shop and he took mine for the day.  We'll be walking up to the pool later for the first swim practice of the year!

I am reading...too many decorating blogs!  But at least they're the thrifty kind that give me ideas that don't cost a fortune.  

I am hoping...for a productive day, but that's not going to happen if I keep reading decorating blogs!

I am hearing...silence.  Most people are still asleep here!

Around the house...Little projects that need to be finished, like painting LP's wardrobe.  Repainting a lamp I got yesterday at Goodwill.

One of my favorite things...Looking for treasures at thrift stores, and not having bored little ones hanging around with me!

A few plans for the rest of the week:  AHG organization, spraypainting, and school.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing...

More Daybooks here.

Saturday, May 8, 2010


I don't know about you, but I'm getting pretty tired of Facebook.  That actually didn't take very long---I've never loved it.  Too hard to navigate.  Too much garbage that I'm not interested in.  And that may very well go for the stuff I've posted, too!

I'm mostly tired of hearing about how it's less and less private all the time.  They're selling our data to everyone and you constantly have to update your privacy options to stay (a little) private.  Fortunately, I have a geeky (and I mean that in the best way possible!) friend who is up on all that stuff and always posts warnings.

All those apps?  I used a few in the beginning, but it really creeps me out how you get a message like this anytime you accept a hug, or flowers, or a button, or some other virtual doodad:

Allowing Hugged access will let it pull your profile information, photos, your friends' info, and other content that it requires to work.

I mean, really?  It needs my friends' info, too?  I stopped using those a long time ago and block the apps as they come in.  So, sorry, if I didn't accept your box of chocolates, tattoo, or hug, or whatever!  No offense intended.

Lately I've been considering the call to quit FB.  Here are 10 Reason Why You Should Quit FB, too.  I can't imagine it's going to happen.  It is a very easy way to keep up with family and friends who are far away.  Even the ones close by.  

I mostly worry about how much information is out there on my children.  Young people don't seem to have the same concerns about their whole lives being available to the world.

What are your concerns about Facebook??

Friday, May 7, 2010

7 Quick Takes


We're off to Six Flags today for a little recreation!  It's homeschool day so we got bargain tickets which are a great price AND include lunch AND a return ticket.  Although they're not such a bargain when you hit the wrong button, multi-task, and end up purchasing twice as many tickets as you need. 

The good news is that I managed to sell one to one of LP's friends whose brothers were already going, and I decided to practically kidnap 3 other siblings the perfect ages for my children since the tix were going to waste.  It would have been perfect if their mom could go, but all the children will have much more fun with their friends.  

And maybe I'll get to ride a roller coaster.  Or six.


The big reveal on the Journey North is today.   We didn't do nearly all the activities you could do with this project, but we had our guesses on where the mystery classes are.  TMax and I were proud to see that we were pretty close on 8 of the 10.  If we had done the homework for the past 2 weeks we might have gotten them all.  It was very interesting.  I hope Pipster and LP are more interested in it next year!


I'm loving Friday mornings now because I get to read a gazillion blogs that are linked up on The Inspired Room!  I know it's silly, but I like to find those little nuggets of thrifty and creative inspiration.  Frankly, I can do without photo after photo of magazine shots.  I prefer the real life creativity, not artificial, un-lived-in houses.


As I was saying in last night's post, I love it when inspiration strikes and the time and materials are at hand to accomplish a project. 

I don't like it when you start a project and you just can't seem to get going with it.  Little Princess wants some redecorating done in her room, and while we've bought a few things and started painted her little wardrobe, the project is just not coming together.  

Do you think it has anything to do with the fact that I don't want to Hannah-fy her room?
Hmmmm.....Why can't she just be a sweet Little Princess instead of a Pop Princess?


It has been a busy week here.  I've been out 3 nights this week and missed Family Dinner!  It's shocking and unusual for us.  I'm sad to say that I'll be missing 2 per week almost every week from now on.  I'll still cook it, and dh will hold down the fort (or the dining table), but I won't be there.  Weird.

Choir on Wednesdays and American Heritage Girls on 3 Thursdays per month.  If you want to know.


Mother's Day is coming up.  Have you heard?  Since my mother's passing 3 years ago (has it really been that long???),  I miss her all the time, but I'm so grateful for the Communion of Saints.  The loss of her earthly life doesn't devastate me because I know she was a very faithful Christian and held on to that faith during her yearlong battle with ALS.  I'm confident that I'll see her again.  (Well, that depends on how well I do, now, doesn't it?)

My dear sister's response to Mother's Day is to ignore it completely.  She doesn't want to be Happy Mother's Dayed by anyone, even her daughter who can't be with her.  She doesn't want to discuss it.  She wants to pretend it doesn't exist, and then the pain doesn't exist.  I don't want to criticize her handling of it, because we're different people and everyone has different, though acceptable ways of dealing with grief, but I just don't see how it helps.  I'd rather enjoy all the things around me that my sweet mother created or painted or loved, because they give me comfort.  Not pain.  I wouldn't mind if someone remembered my mother on Mother's Day and reminded me of her, because she was a wonderful mother and the one person from whom I could find unconditional love.

So, Happy Mother's Day!  How will you celebrate or remember your mother?


I'm going to Six Flags today.  Did I say that already? ;-)  
In my ideal world, I would ride all the roller coasters at least once.  Some of them several times.  Nothing else really interests me.

I think Dh and I should take a couple of the return tickets and go on a date.   Some evening when it's cooler and less crowded.  And just ride coasters.  Over and over again.  

He loves that about me. 


Thursday, May 6, 2010

Marian Inspiration

I love it when inspiration strikes and you find a project that you want to do.

And everything you need is at hand.

The $1 picture frame that you've already painted white.

The Magnificat mailing that came with a large-print sample,

and a beautiful picture of the Madonna and Child on the back.

We already have the Blessed Mother all around the house, but this one is special for Little Princess, and she found the first, perfect rose of the year to give to her!

For more Decorating Inspiration visit The Inspired Room!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

TMax Makes Chips

A large pan of Mexican lasagne and a lot of leftover corn tortillas led to a strong desire for nachos among the young'uns the other day.

Chips are something I almost never buy.  The cost is astronomical for what you get in terms of quantity, quality, and the plain old lack of anything worthwhile.  And the trans fats?  Do we even need to go there?

In the interest of satisfying a little "salt-tooth" and using up what we had, I encouraged TMax to make his own chips.  

The person who wanted the chips to begin with turned up his nose for a while, until these started disappearing very quickly!

I've heard it said that if you want to eat something "bad" you should make it yourself.  In this case, far fewer chips were eaten than if I had bought a big bag of them.  When we make donuts, we eat more than if we bought them, although they don't have questionable ingredients.

Now, these appeared to be a bit greasy (we used EVOO), and they were, but I'm of the belief that fat is not only not bad for us, but actually good for us.

If you want to read more about Real Food, stop by Kelly's.

Monday, May 3, 2010

First Holy Communion

Anima Christi
Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds, hide me.
Separated from Thee let me never be.
From the malignant enemy, defend me.
At the hour of death, call me.
To come to Thee, bid me,
That I may praise Thee in the company
Of Thy Saints, for all eternity. Amen.


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