Follow our family as we journey through life.

Friday, February 28, 2014

7 Quick and 5 Random

So we are expecting some sort of monster storm later this weekend with a foot or more of snow and ice possible. Yeah, there's absolutely nothing to say about that.
We have been so fortunate this winter health-wise, but this week illness struck both Michael and I. Not the flu, but really bad colds. The kind where you are just in bed or wishing you are in bed. And although we are both feeling a ton better, this is the cold that will just not let go.
Which is made worse by the fact that we have tickets to The Avett Brothers and Old Crow Medicine Show tomorrow night in Pittsburgh. Must. Get. Better. Now.
We had our final Blue and Gold Banquet this week. I say final because Cub Scouts has become more of a burden to our schedule than a blessings and we have decided not to continue with it. The boys like it okay, but it's not a prerequisite if they decide to join Boy Scouts, and between soccer, LMCA, Isaac's school stuff and everyday life we just had to let some stuff go. It's the great lesson of the year for me: Learning when enough is enough.
Isaac was awarded a trophy for best design for his Pinewood Derby Sailboat.

And although our awesome cake made by the boys of Adventurers Climbing up a Volcano didn't win any prizes, it was still an awesome display.
Lastly, I will leave you with a link to a site that has consumed me over the last several months. The new LMCA website. Designed by a local Dad, this site has a lot of little typos and is definitely a work in progress, but has turned out beautifully! Click the link below to view:
Check out more thoughts over at

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Sewing to Summer Link -Up

Almost forgot to link-up my creations with the Sewing to Summer Challenge. I created a few of skirts for Margaret using all fabrics I already owned. They turned out pretty darn cute!

Check out more sewing creations over at Milk and Honey Mommy.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Product Review: Pope Awesome and Other Stories (Book)

Okay, I really dropped the ball on this one. I was asked to review this book sometime in December and I didn't make the deadline, so then I had the post scheduled to go live in early January and I never hit "Publish" so it stayed on draft mode. This is super lousy because not only does it let Cari down, who was counting on me to help promote her book, but I can't stand it when I am unable to follow through on a commitment.
So here's the deal: Check this book out. It's super funny and not anything like other "Struggling Catholic Moms give their troubles to God and everything gets better" book. No offense to those authors, your books are good as well. But this book by Cari Donaldson is something I can relate to. Cari doesn't pretend like things are good or even going to get better. Her "better" is actually just the chaos she lives in every day. The loud, noisy, unpredictable (and sometimes dangerous) real life living that I am going through this very moment as well.
You don't have to be Catholic, you don't have to be a mother of a basketball team, you don't even have to be married. Really, the only two requirements you need to enjoy this book is the ability to read and the actual book itself. Which is available through Sophia Institute Press and Amazon.
Pope Awesome and Other Stories

For all of you who would like to read what didn't get published when it was supposed to, I have included it below for your pleasure.  
Looking for a fun read that you can pick up and set down a gazillion times while fulfilling your parent role? Look no further- here it is! Pope Awesome and Other Stories is the truthful tale of one gal's journey to faith, motherhood, and marriage- just not in that order. I received a free copy of this book so that I could share with you just how awesome it is on this blog.
It's a tale of a journey to the most daunting place on Earth: Real Life. It is filled with details and commentary that make you feel as if you personally know the author, Cari Donaldson. I have never met Cari personally, we are the new fad-type friends: internet friends. Communicating over blogs, facebook, and emails, we have created a relationship not unlike a friendship. I like to think that we are to the point where if I offered my house for them to stay on their way to Michigan from Connecticut, Cari wouldn't view me as a scary sicko. Because hey, once you have more than four kids we are all the same type of crazy.

So there are a ton of those faith-filled mothering books out there, and you may be wondering why you should read this one over the dozens of others. Pope Awesome is for those of us who live down here on planet Earth. Our houses are a mess, our kids are undressed, we have loads of condiments in the fridge but not much food, and if Child Services arrived at our house this very moment we may have some troubles on hand. It is for those moms who swear they could articulate a complete sentence about something non-kid related before, but have since lost that ability. Dads who go to work and come home thinking it is better not to ask or know what happened here. Parents who know that their own kind of perfect is just that: their own.

It is not overly the top in your face religious. Many readers know that kind of stuff lets me down. It is honest and raw and funny. Like "laugh out loud" funny.

Why do you need to read this book instead of the others? I am not offering a spoiler here, but just know that the way Cari writes to include her reader and the way she shares with such vivid images, lets you know that she has not received some sort of special vision and now she knows everything will be grand. She never once offers a magical solution.I think that was the reason the book was so good for me. Kids are naked again in the neighbors yard? She's not out to solve that problem, but she may hide behind the curtains when the doorbell rings. And that is exactly what I needed to read about. Another mom making it despite the issues. To know that I am not alone and that others moms also don't have solutions and their problems aren't solved. And that sometimes it's time to laugh and sometimes it's time to FREAK-THE-HECK-OUT!

You won't regret adding this book to your reading list this winter. It is available at Sophia Institute Press and Amazon.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a review on this blog. I received no other compensation and all views are my own.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Krom Daddy

7 Quick Takes/ Random 5

Winter has been a long one around here. I believe long winters exist so that I remain a confident driver. Last year we barely got any snow. When it was snow flurries I would be like, "Oh, we have to cancel! Look at it come down out there!" This year it's all about, "Well, how much ice is there? Oh, we can still make it for sure."
We are finally thawing out, but apparently not for long. Tuesday is supposed to bring more snow. I am hoping between now and then my snow parking barriers will have melted.
For those that don't know, we only have street parking here. Well, we can park in the alley, but that is a whole other world because they never plow the alleys and the ruts are so deep in the snow I think the car might bottom out.
Anyways, the snow has gotten so piled up on the street that there were actually snow walls separating everyone's cars. They were about three feet high and the van must be wiggled into it's spot every time! It was fun at first, but after about a month got kind of old.
Classic school crisis this week. For two weeks Isaac has had this project in science. I keep asking him and he keeps telling me that they are doing it in class. Well on Monday night he tells me he got confused and it is supposed to be done at home and it is due Thursday. It was a diorama of an animal habitat for the Western Diamondback Rattlesnake. Sigh. At least he didn't choose some sort of gross spider.
Even with limited time Isaac was still able to do an awesome job. He is such a creative kid.
Yes, that snake is eating the bunny.

Cute Malcolm moment. He wanted to play a game from the game closet. So I got Chutes and Ladders down for him. He couldn't say "Chutes" so he called it "Toots and Ladders." It was so darn cute we found ways for him to say it for about 20 minutes until he caught on and tried to pronounce it correctly.
Someone posted on Facebook that she felt like she needed a 'do-over' for this week. Things would not be pleasant if I had to do this week over. Not that it was bad, but between the weather and all the other little commitments we had to fill the days, a do-over would only leave me feeling even more stretched thin! Come on spring! Come on March!
Check out more thoughts over at Conversion Diary and The Pebble Pond

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Snow and more snow

It is like the house guest that won't leave. 

Everyday it reappears and demands something new. Stay inside! Shovel me! Get more corrosive salt on your car! Be cold! Be wet! Change your plans! Abandon hope of spring!

At least it's pretty. 

Friday, February 14, 2014

7 Quick Takes and 5 Random Thoughts

Malcolm and I were discussing the upcoming event of him using the potty. His response was as follows: "No! I don't want to do that! I no have enouff money for that. Maybe for my birffday I will do that."
Came across this amazing adoption video and had to share the link. It is seven minutes long but worth every second.
So of course today is Valentine's Day. Michael and I are celebrating by bribing the kids with a movie and eating a dinner at home. It's our annual tradition and we love it.


Speaking of Valentine's Day, having a kid in school means I get to do all the "official" school things that the stores promote items for. Like the teacher sent a note home for Valentine's Day and if we want to participate then each student must have the same thing, blah, blah. We are having a blast with this sort of conformity, but my main thought is that things get expensive fast when it is all "times 20."


So on top of classroom conformity, we were invited to our annual V-Day homeschool celebration, which may or may not go because of weather. So last night was a "Mega Prepare for Valentine's Day" event. But know what? It turned out to be the best time I've had in a while.


Michael was at campus until late, which usually sucks, but this time it didn't. The six of us sat around the table and made Valentine's. Not handmade. I mean we filled in the blanks in a store-bought Star Wars Card. After we completes the 50+ cards, we had a taste test with the mini-bars.

Everyone was laughing and joking and smiling and chatting. It was the type of experience I signed up for when I said I wanted a large family. It may only come once in a while, but it was worth the wait.

Oh, and Margie organized the chocolates for us.
Check out more thoughts over at Conversion Diary and The Pebble Pond.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Friday, February 7, 2014

7 Quick Takes and 5 Random Thoughts

Oh my gosh what a week! It was one of those spinning out of control one minute, calm before the storm the next. And it's not even soccer season!
Weather only had a little to do with it. Granted we had cancellations and delays and ice and snow and cold, but mostly that just caused minor inconveniences for this crew.
My big problem seems to be time management. It wasn't so much that there was a lot going one... okay we had a lot going on this week. But on top of those things I added more as the week progressed. Unplanned non-profit meetings on two days? Sure! Birthday party in the afternoon when science fair is in the evening? Of course! Volunteer at church in morning with afternoon commitments in place? We'll be there!
I love my life, I really do. But sometimes I just wish things didn't have to be so. very. much. I wish I had the ability to know my limits before they are reached. Before I am drowning and grumpy and down.
On another note, my littlest man got croup last week which turned into a really nasty sinus thing. The illness and our schedule just wiped him out.
This is the perfect representation of him on so many different levels. The clothes, the posture, the fact that he transported all his essential sleeping items to the couch to take a rest while I cleaned and James practiced the piano. Even in sleep he doesn't want to be left out of the chaos.
Big news in the math department! Margaret finished the Primer Level of Math U See. Margaret needs the structure and hands-on aspect of Math U See. My boys did fine with A Beka from the beginning. But if Margaret can't experience it, she can't grasp it when it comes to math. A Beka made her feel like she couldn't do math, that it was too hard for her. Now math is her favorite school work!

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

School House Bakery

We went with a local mom starting her bakery business for Margaret's LMCA birthday celebration. 

Do you want to build a snowman?

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Pinewood Derby

My boys rocked the Pinewood Derby this year with their vehicles


Even the little man got in on the building action.

What do you mean I can't race my car at the Derby?


Neither of them won the race, but Isaac won "Best Overall Design."

Monday, February 3, 2014

Look Who Has Turned Six!!!!

Can you believe that she is six! It seems like only yesterday we were telling people that the we had a most unexpected girl!


Happy Birthday Sweet Baby Girl!

Snow Day!

We were thawing out, but that darn groundhog messed us up!!!