Thursday, March 31, 2011

10 Things About Me and My Better Half

Playing along with Betty Beguiles, though I'm a little late to the game.  Yesterday was a little busy.

1.  Whenever we tell people that we went to the same high school, they immediately want to know if we were high school sweethearts.  No.  He was 2 years ahead of me and had a girlfriend.

2.  We both went to the University of Virginia where I lightly stalked him during my first year (since he and D---- had broken up), and we did hang out a bit together when friends from high school came to visit.

3.  We had our first date in June (He's gonna kill me if I get that wrong, but I wasn't a history major for a good reason.  I can't remember dates.) after my first year.  We went to a School's Out party where someone suggested we'd make a good couple, so he called me up and we went to see Fellini's film adaptation of La Traviata.  Very classy.  It's like "Our Movie".

4.   We've always loved watching movies together.  I remember when we were first married and we had seen practically everything, we could pick all the Oscar winners.

5.  He was supposed to convert to my church, but as he had the stronger will (as in God's), I ended up becoming Catholic, for which I will be eternally grateful.

6.  No one makes me laugh like he does.

7.  He's great at helping me make decisions and a good sounding board for discussing difficult issues.  He's very logical but it's all backed up by his strong faith.

8.  We taught Natural Family Planning together for about 10 years because of the positive impact NFP had on our marriage.  We also gave The Talk on marital sexuality for our Pre-Cana (marriage preparation) program for quite a few years.  It was fun working together that way, and we always felt like the classes were "dates."  It sounds lame, but if a date allows a couple to get to know each other better and grow closer, then the classes were dates!

9.  Our 7 children (1 in heaven) have made us grow into much better people than we were when we got married.

10.  Our 25th anniversary is this August.  I've been with him way more than half my life and I can't imagine life without him.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Yarn Along

Entomology is growing slowly.  Unfortunately, the reading pile is growing faster!

There are 2 Yarn Harlot books which make me laugh every time I pick one up.  And then I have to read the funny bits to the kids---but they finally seem to be  figuring out that they don't find it as humorous as I do, so they're not asking as much.

1000 Gifts.  With apologies to her fans for being so slow and apathetic.

My lent reading:  Jesus of Nazareth, which is totally awesome but I can't plow through the 11 pages per day necessary to finish by Easter.

But Spring Break is next week!  For Tom and the Homeschool, so I'll get lots done or nothing at all.

Bill Bryson At Home.  He needed an editor.  Even with skimming I won't finish it before it is due back.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Great Workout w/ Kettlebells!

A couple of weeks ago I snagged a great deal at Target!  They had all their New Year's fitness stuff on clearance, and I found a much-coveted 10-lb. kettlebell at 50% off.   Pete and I had just been talking about kettlebells and what great workouts they are.  He had been using one at school and I have been wanting one for years, but hadn't wanted to spend the money.

The 50% got my attention, even though it was still $30.  There were other brands there that were slightly more expensive and not on sale, so I got this one.  What I didn't realize is that it was this set and came with 6 DVD's.  I thought I was just getting the bell!  Duh!

This fits in perfectly with my idea of functional fitness and short workouts.  The 3 main workouts are 20 mins. and the bonus workouts are only 10, so I can totally customize it to my needs and schedule.  The workouts are very cheaply produced, as in they just cut and paste different exercises together.  He never goes all the way through a workout at one time, but I don't mind that.  I'm just glad it came with workout dvd's.  

Pip wanted to know if I could tell a difference since I started---because I guess he can't---and I definitely can.  I feel tighter and more toned all over.  I feel great, and that's doing it only every other day as recommended.  I like a workout that says to give yourself a day between workouts to recover!

Now, there is a very stern warning about not using it if you have back, neck, and spine problems, which I totally ignored.  You do have to be extremely careful of your form and not use a bell that's too heavy, but I think my spine feels much better with this workout.  It's sitting in the car for hours a day that does a number on my back!

Have you ever tried kettlebells, or wanted to???

Monday, March 28, 2011

Rainy March Monday Daybook

Outside my window...
...the incessant thunderstorms from the past few days seem to have stopped for a while.  The roads are drying up.  The dogwoods are in full bloom, along with the redbuds, but all the other flowering trees are past their prime and turning green.  The cherry trees seemed to bloom and fade more quickly than usual this year. :-(

I am thinking...
...about not much.  Too sleepy to think on this chilly, damp day.  All I can think of is that I'd like to be warm and asleep!

I am thankful for...
...a fire in the fireplace today.  And a home to come to.  As I was driving through the torrential downpour today, I was thinking about how it would feel to have this lovely area where I live completely and utterly destroyed.  Then I started thinking of the likelihood of something like that happening, here.  Fortunately, most of the acts of God that create such widespread destruction are rare here.

From the schoolroom kitchen table...
...More Civil War. 
...memorizing "Jabberwocky" 

From the kitchen...
...Nutella Mug Cakes for dessert yesterday.  Dark and rich and calorie-laden!  The first one cooked for 2 mins. in the microwave and was perfect---fully cooked with just a little "sauce" around the edges for moistness.  Even though we set each one on 2 mins., some were cooked a little too much, and one hardly at all.  Weird.

Anyway, they are DEFINITELY for sharing!  All my gluttonous little people wanted a whole one, and they were all stuffed after just a half.  Not everyone managed to finish a half, and we didn't even top it with whipped cream!  

I think mug cakes are a great way to indulge on Sunday (if you're the sort who breaks your fast on Sunday) and not have any leftovers for Monday.

I am creating...
...A Linen Stitch scarf, and a Dragonfly shawl.  After starting and ripping out 4 times, I think I've got the hang of the Entomology shawl.  Learning how to do the beading was tricky, but it will be worth it for that added sparkle!

I am reading...
...One Thousand Gifts.  Still reading sporadically.  And writing my lists sporadically.  But I'm working on them in my head, which is an improvement over not being grateful at all.

...Jesus of Nazareth.  Lenten reading.  I'm behind, but I love it so far.

...At Home: A Short History of Private Life.  He's full of it; it's anything but a short history.   The only other book I've read by Bryson was A Walk in the Woods which I really enjoyed.  His writing style makes me L.O.L. all the time, even when it's a "history" book.  But this book is much, much denser than I expected and I don't see how there is anyway for me to finish it in the 2 weeks allotted by the library.  

And to make matters worse, the 2 Stephanie Pearl-McPhee (a.k.a. Yarn Harlot) books I ordered from the library are waiting for me now.

I am hoping...
...for a fruitful Lent.

I am hearing... dancing (or something) in the kitchen when they should be eating lunch.  Why can't they focus on one activity at a time?

Around the house...
...The Front Door.  It's falling apart.  We knew it was in need of being replaced because we don't get any direct sunlight during the day and it stays damp, but it seems that as soon as we actually started the process of finding someone to do the work, it decided to implode.   I hope it can hold out until the HOA approves our application and the new door gets ordered and comes in!

I am going... the HOA Home Depot  to order my door, if they give me permission to do that before their approval process is complete! the library pick up TMax after his LAST (thank you, God!) late drama day.  I'm so glad the show is over, but it was awesome.  Seriously one of the best high school productions I've ever seen.

One of my favorite things...
...Bookclub meetings with some wild, chatty ladies who are very fun.

I am praying for...
...all the poor souls, living and dead, in Japan
...the rescue workers
...the soul of a fellow-homeschooling mother who just passed away from MS, and her family
...the mother of a friend who is very near the end
...our priests

A few plans for the rest of the week...

...Choir, school,  no AHG

A Thought for the day...
Stop by As Cozy As Spring---Jen is having an awesome raffle for anyone who donates to the one of the relief funds for Japan.  If you haven't made a donation yet, maybe the sight of her beautiful yarn or Melissa Wiley's out-of-print book will encourage you!
More Daybooks HERE

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Yarn Along

Lenten Reading:  Revelations of Divine Love, and Pope Benedict's Jesus of Nazareth.  Not the new one; dh is reading that one.  I really like Revelations, but it's one that you can only read a small section of per day and then spend the rest of the day digesting.

Another book not pictured is Where the Lillies Bloom.  I picked it up at the church yard sale for a quarter.  I've never read it, but I saw the movie as a child (a young teen?) and it has always haunted me.  Do you have movies or books like that, that you just barely remember, but you know how they made you feel, and you've always wanted to find again???  So far, in 10 minutes per night, I'm enjoying it.

The knitting is, as usual, going better than the reading.  I've done 3 repeats of the pattern and am halfway through the 4th.  I have to do 6-8 repeats, which sounds like I'm almost halfway done, but you have to bear in mind that each repeat is longer than the one before, so they go slower and sloooowwwwweerrr.  "Let me just finish this row!"  takes on a whole new meaning.

I also had to break my yarn yesterday to string more beads.  Bummer.  Since I calculated that I need 10 feet of beads and I had strung 5 feet to begin with (figuring that half was the right amount for one skein of my 2 skein work), I was a bit disheartened.  The stringing takes forever and it's hard to work with 5 feet of beads hanging from my ball of yarn!  I have to keep stopping to push all the beads down a few more feet so I have some free yarn to work with.

I think it's a good metaphor for Lent and my spiritual progress:  the more I do, the further behind I feel.  And it's never going as smoothly as I'd like!  I don't seem to be making progress, just mistakes.  At least with the knitting there is visual proof of progress.

I must have calculated the number of beads wrong.  There are 8 repeats and 128 beads per repeat; that's 1024.  Plus another 5 dragonflies at the beginning: about 320 more beads.  That's a lot of beads, and the little containers don't tell you how many are in each one.  I may be popping into Joann's with my handy coupons to buy more beads in a couple of weeks!

Another thing about this project is that it requires me to have faith.  I don't know if you can see how each diamond puckers, but they do.  I'm working hard to keep my tension even and loose, but they all do that and I have to trust that all the flaws will be smoothed out with the blocking.

Monday, March 21, 2011

March Daybook

Outside my window...
...a 10 on the Mellish-Meter.   Sunshine, mid-70's.  Hallelujah!

I am thinking...
...about food, after spending all morning at the lab with 2 kids, starving, and being bored and pricked...Wondering how long it will take my blood sugar to get back to normal levels so I can attempt some schoolwork today!

I am thankful for...
...the ability to watch a movie on my iphone at the lab.  
...the nice ladies at the dance store who let me in to the adjoining, closed costume shop to buy urgently needed drama makeup, and allowed me to get back to the lab for the next (and last) poke.

From the schoolroom kitchen table...
...See above.
...we watched part of Buster Keaton in The General at the lab as part of our Civil War study.
...and we practiced math facts with an app.

From the kitchen...

...Pasta with Pesto.  Italian for the 3rd night in a row.  
... This weekend I made a FABULOUS raw foodie's delight:  Raw Cashew Dreamcake.  It came in very handy today after the long fast!

I am creating...

...A Linen Stitch scarf, and a Dragonfly shawl.  After starting and ripping out 4 times, I think I've got the hang of the Entomology shawl.  Learning how to do the beading was tricky, but it will be worth it for that added sparkle!

I am reading...
...One Thousand Gifts.  Still reading sporadically.  And writing my lists sporadically.  But I'm working on them in my head, which is an improvement over not being grateful at all.

...Alice I Have Been.  FINISHED!  Finally.  Curious.  I'm not really sure how I feel about this book!  It was fascinating, especially the factual parts of the story.  There's a lot missing (which the author made up), so one really wonders what mysterious thing happened to tear Alice and Mr. Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) apart.

I am hoping...
...for a fruitful Lent.

I am hearing...
...ack, the TV.  Time to finish this and get the kids to work before the day is completely wasted!

Around the house...
...Working on ordering a new front door and hardware. 
Not much spring cleaning happened last week with college kids home sporadically for spring break. 

I am going...
...nowhere for a while.  I feel like getting things done here at home!  

One of my favorite things...
...ummm, Raw Cashew Dreamcake?  

I am praying for...
...all the poor souls, living and dead, in Japan
...the rescue workers
...the soul of a fellow-homeschooling mother who just passed away from MS, and her family
...the mother of a friend who is very near the end
...our priests

A few plans for the rest of the week...

...Choir, school, AHG
...a root canal for Pip
...Drama production at school

A Thought for the day...
...from Padre Pio's mother:

Who are we to judge the ministers of the Lord?  For we can only see what he does, while the Lord can see what is in his heart and why he does what he does.

More Daybooks HERE

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Evangelizing the JWs

Yesterday the Jehovah's Witnesses were out in force!  They spent the entire day canvassing our neighborhood, rescuing the fallen.  It's not that big of a neighborhood, with the number of folks they had on duty, they could have finished in less time.  

Unless they were having a good day.

At my house, it's a good thing my Dear Husband was home.  My approach is quite simple, if I'm even in the mood to answer the door:

We're Catholic, and we love it.  Thanks for stopping by!

Dh took a more evangelical approach and on the way to the door had the foresight to grab a copy of Pillar of Fire, Pillar of Truth.  (text is here)  After the usual greeting, finding out we're Catholic and Lovin' It,  and her commentary on the state of injustice in the world, she offered him her reading material.  He said, "Sure, I'll take yours if you take one of mine!  You take it home and read it.  If you have any questions about the Catholic church, come back and I'll answer them for you!"

Evidently, she laughed.  Affronted that someone should attempt to evanglize the evangelical!


I hope you're having a relaxing Sunday!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Saturday Thoughts

To make up for my cranky/tired post from yesterday, I thought I would point you to one of my favorite posts of the week.  It's especially appropriate in light of my irritability last night!

Maria is one of the regulars on SQPN's Catholic Weekend podcast with my friend Capt. Jeff.  I've known of her for a while, but I haven't been reading her blog regularly---until she started this 30-Day meme that she's doing.

She's very real, and very wise, both of which you will see in this post about Something She'd Like to Change.  

I'd like to sit down and have (another) cup of coffe with her to talk about these things!

Have a great Saturday---it's Chore Day around here, and only my Princess and I available to do the chores.  So it'll be an All Girl Chore Day!  Woot!

Friday, March 18, 2011

7 Quick Takes

1.  I wish I had a picture of last night's dinner for St. Patrick's Day! It was yummy, but it was very late and everyone was ready to eat.  We had Reubens with mashed redskin potatoes and fried cabbage w/ bacon.  Oh, and don't forget the Irish Soda Bread.  I even bought a little shamrock plant for fun.  So unlike me.

2.  I was going to say that we have a field trip scheduled for today, but here it is 7.5 hours later and we're back from said field trip.  And exhausted.  That is, I am, but the kids have run off to play with friends before we hop back into the car for tonight's Fish Fry.

3.  We had a field trip today (bet you're surprise to hear that!) to an antebellum home called Barrington Hall.  It's a local house that I didn't even know existed until very recently; it belonged to the son of Roswell King, the entrepreneur who was responsible for the growth of his eponymous town.  There are a couple of other such houses in Roswell, also, but I didn't know about this one because it sits up on the highest bluff in town and you really can't see it if you're the one driving the car and not craning your neck out the window.  It's a gorgeous home that was built in 1842 and was kept in the family up until 2003.  Evidently, they gradually sold off their 1500 acres to try to hold on to it.

The shutters are more of a mint green now since they scraped the paint off and found that was the original color!

4.  If it's Friday, it must be fish.  Fry, that is.  Every year I swear to myself that the only Lenten sacrifice I'm going to make is to go to the fish fry every Friday without complaining.  Then you'd see some serious growth in holiness!  However, I'd prefer to complain about it since it really does wear me out every Friday.  Not that our hardworking, ever-ready-to-help Knights of Columbus don't do a great job.  They do.  I'm just not a big fan of the menu.  Tonight I think I'll skip my only joy, which is to sit with friends and knit until dh is finished working and we can go home, and I'll go to the Stations of the Cross instead.

5.  I didn't do the knitalong this week, but I've made quite a bit of progress on my Entomology shawl.  I'm loving it.  What I really love is learning tricks to fix the mistakes without having to take out many rows.  Ahem.  You'll never notice when I'm wearing it!

6.  Every. Single. Time. I type that word --- Entomology --- I swear it is spelled wrong, but the spellchecker doesn't underline it.  I want to spell it ENTYMOLOGY.  But I guess that would be wrong, huh?

7.  Still, still, still, reading Alice I Have Been.  I like it; I'm just not that into it.  Oh, but that means I don't like it, doesn't it?  Well, maybe so, maybe no.  When I finish it, I'll let you know the final verdict.   But today I checked out Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass on CD for our carpool trips.  I wonder if I'll feel differently about them having read (almost) this book (which is, of course, "faction").

Have a great weekend, y'all!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Catholic Media Promotion Day

On March 15, 2011, everyone with a blog, podcast, or Facebook page should list their favorite 3 blogs, 3 podcasts, 3 other media, 3 random Catholic things online, and their own projects.

Then, post the link to your list here on March 15th.

Additionally, to help get the word out, press are asked to write articles and press releases for this day.

Lastly, on March 15th, go to iTunes and leave at least 3 positive written reviews for various Catholic podcasts and 3 positive written reviews for Catholic mobile applications. 

Here we go---I'm going to do my little bit to promote Catholic Media.  If you're just hearing about this, go ahead and do your own post; it's not too late.

But it's not going to be easy to choose from all the great options out there!

3 Favorite Catholic Blogs:

1.  Jennifer Fulwiler's Conversion Diary.  Jen's a great writer; she makes me laugh out loud and she makes me think.  Posts range from scorpion sitings to thought-provoking posts on the faith, especially as a convert from atheism.

2.  Catholic Cuisine.  It's great for finding ways to live the liturgical year through feasting!

3.  Gloria in Excelsis Deo.  Katherine will be surprised to be listed here (if she even reads my blog!).  Her blog is mainly about her children as she tries to keep her spread-out family informed of their growth, but her traditional Catholic faith is such a strong part of who she is that it's really lovely to see.  It's heartwarming to see the kids learn their faith and she does a great job of explaining Catholicism to us. 

3 Catholic Podcasts:

I don't listen to very many Catholic podcasts, and I've only listened to one or two of some of these, sooooo:

1. Definitely, The Catholic Laboratory.  Ian Maxfield is great.  His podcast is very well done.  It's well organized and he's a clear speaker.  He also methodically tackles his subjects and makes them fairly comprehensible to non-science types like myself. Very educational!

2.  Catholic Pilot.  Capt. Jeff is a friend of ours, so that's the only reason he makes my list!  (Just checking to see if you're reading, Jeff.)  Seriously, if you're interested in a pilot's perspective on the view from the cockpit and Catholicism, this is your best bet.

3.  Just a Catholic Dad.  Living in the UK with a non-Christian wife and raising their daughter Catholic.  He's fun to listen to, though I've only heard a few episodes.

3 Other Media:

1.  Love my Divine Office app on my iphone!  Loved it on my ipod touch, but now that I have my phone I'll be able to listen to the prayers anytime, not only when I've remembered to upload them before leaving the wi-fi in my driveway!  

2. Fisheaters.  Great place to go for answers to Catholic Questions.  I link to it often.

3.  Faith and Family. It was always a gorgeous magazine when we subscribed to it and now it's online.



1.  I just discovered this new blog and wanted to share today's post.  Oh, my.  It's The Spiritual Exercises Blog. Are you "plumb enough" today?  I can tell this is going to help get my spiritual life in order!

Have a great day perusing all this Catholic stuff online.  Don't forget to LIKE Catholic Media Promotion Day on FB, and see what everyone else likes!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...