Category Archives: Reading

Saints, Ramblings and the F-word

30 whole minutes!  Alone.  In my house.  Unheard of (unless I come home for lunch).  We split up for Masses today due to lawns/training/Faith Formation, etc, etc, etc and somehow I am alone.  AHHH.  You don’t even know.  or maybe you do.  It’s bliss.

I’ll take advantage of it and blog in peace.  My mind has been running all morning.  It’s going to be a patchwork quilt of my stream of consciousness…enjoy….

My friend sent me a link (to a blog I follow–hee hee, BUT hadn’t read yet) last week or so and the piece was on the F-word and the how our use of the English language has truly lowered the bar in regards to vulgarity.  It is a GREAT post and you can click below on the link and I will tell you I have been re-thinking before I speak more frequently lately as well as being glad that my blog hasn’t gone that road…even though it might get more hits if it did, but in the end, it’s just not me.  most of the time.  though sometimes….I’m sad to say, it is…the link to Tom’s post is here:  “Defusing the F-bomb” with Neal Obstat Theological Pining

I’ve also given a lot of thought to the amazing lessons we learn from the Saints and figured I’d join in with “Saints Sunday” with The Kennedy Adventures today.  Especially as during Mass I had to referee a disagreement between 2 girls for the first 1/4 of Mass…always a joy…you’d think with only 2 kids at Mass it would have been a breeze.  I should  have taken the other 2.  However, as I was praying “Dear, Jesus, Mary AND Joseph protect my children from the demon threatening to break free from my neck at any minute to silence these girls…help me to be graceful and love them even though they are getting on my last.  ever-loving.  nerve. right now.  Amen”  Right then I had a flash of Saint Monica and was shown how motherhood is a marathon.  Now, Lord Help these kids if it takes me 30 years, but…I was filled with a sense of peace and a guiding of “Continue on.  You’re on the right path.”, neck muscles relaxed, girls relaxed and the rest of Mass was good.  Talk about your instant gratification/affirmation.  Yes, please and thank you!!

The temptations of the saints were seen as opportunities for self­discovery. They allowed temptations to show them the breaches in the fortress of their souls, which needed to be fortified until they would become the strongest points. This explains the curious fact about many saintly people-that they often become the opposite of what they once seemed to be.      (Lift Up Y our Heart)  Venerable Fulton John Sheen 

Confirmation.  Our 9th grader is making his this year.  Parent meeting today and his first of 6 classes tonight with a dinner.  Praying for the right sponsor for him, he needs the right  person to talk to and spark that mustard seed.

Busy Saturday.  Football in the morning.  Hubby took our girl while I took the other girl grocery shopping and tackled the house.  Then, after lunch I took both girls to our oldest girl’s first soccer game while Hubby stayed with the boys and tackled the tree stump in the back yard so we can plant a new tree.  The weather was good, the drive was quick (for 1.5 hour to AND from the game–that says aLOT!), and best of all, we made it home in time for dinner on the table!  SCORE!!!

Chill Sunday.  It appears we are getting Isaac reincarnated today.  Not quite the storm he was his first pass before he let loose on the Gulf coast, Louisiana and Mississippi, but it’s a blustery and rainy day.  The library is in store for SURE!!!

And one last note on a Saint-to-be…today Bishop Fulton J. Sheen is decreed as “Venerable” by the Vatican and a celebration of his life and vocation is taking place in Peoria at Celebrate Sheena Mass of Thanksgiving for an amazing man and true blessing to the Church.

Game 1. A loss, but a GREAT game with lots of potential to the season!!


Friday: The Rainbow edition

A Friday tradition is to join in with Jennifer and her international friends @ Conversion Diary and share a weekly wrap up, not only is it a great way to boost the stats on the blog BUT……it’s a great way to find NEW blogs to read. Win-win, people, win-win.

I’ll be doing this in (mostly) photo version today, mostly because I need to wake up a bunch of kids and get to work, and because it seemed I took a bunch of pictures on my iPhone this week…, I thought I’d share!

1.  We are ready for the Olympics!!! Are you???  We are so excited!!  In fact, several months ago we gave up cable (no one was really watching anyway AND it saved us about $70 a month), BUT….in order to watch the Olympics (not on the laptop) hubby put up an antennae to grab signal so that we can get the local affiliate and join in.  It took MUCH sweat and effort on his part, lots of brain power and in the end….a sweet, crisp picture and now we also have a few local channels (which is great for severe weather, usually we are just oblivious and watch the skies) and SEVERAL Spanish channels.  Bring on the Olympic torch!!

Set up and ready to go!!

2.  Speaking of Olympic prowess and excitement, my personal buff and ripped self 😉

came to a screeching halt this week when somehow, someway I managed to pull something in my shoulder/upper back and had to skip most of the week babying it.  My new best friend is:

These things are the BOMB! Seriously, they last like 8 hours!!! And as a bonus, I don’t feel like I’m 80 anymore!

3.  Also, in preparation for the Olympics, we bought a great little buffet at an estate sale for $50 (Hubby is a good negotiator!) and after much sweat (his), some cursing (his) and some muscles (mine and his, I had to help him move it around a little) it’s been refurnished and now is our new entertainment stand…more to come in a before and after post:

Much cleaner look than our previous entertainment center.

4.  In other entertainment news, my current read

This book is FASCINATING!!! Why did I take so long to read it?!?!

5.  My forgetfulness has come to a whole new level, not one but TWO reminders this morning from my little entrepreneurs…..

Apparently my mantra of “if you want me to remember, write it down” has finally sunk in!

6.  An awesome sight the other night

Something about rainbows…

Our daughter looked up and said…”God’s promise”. Love it. A double promise this time!

7.  No picture of this, but since I’ve been getting as much overtime as possible this and last week, I am super glad it’s Friday.  It will be worth it when it takes the sting out of the back-to-school shopping comes.  Soon.  Far.  Too.  Soon.

Blessings to you all!!



Wrapping it up! (or, I thought Friday would never get here!)

Friday and time to take a look at the week in review or “7 Quick takes with Conversion Diary’s Jennifer Fulwiler and friends“….

Since  my internet connection is down and I may or may not be mooching off a neighbor’s wireless with an extremely slow connection, I’ll make this brief (I hope), since I am procrastinating (as usual) and do need to start waking the kiddies for school shortly….

1.  The internet is down.  (see above)  Fortunately, Hubby worked from home all day yesterday with no problem, so apparently we lost connection sometime late in the afternoon.  Our phone is internet phone (Magic Jack), our TV is internet (Roku) and know what?  It didn’t make too much of a difference last night.  Now tonight…..I want to watch Downton Abbey with Hubby (our weekly date) so that AT&T dude better fix it up tonight!!!  or not….whatever…the longer it’s broke the bigger discount they will give us for next month; at least that’s the way it’s worked in the past.

2.  My favorite Pyrex pan (13X9) EXPLODED the other night with the kid’s FAVE new dinner in it.  URGH!!!  Note to self, no multitasking while butter is melting in the pan.  Apparently the butter was too hot when I took out the pan and the biscuits, though sitting at room temp for quite some time were too cold.  Well…..SHAZAM.  It was loud.  It was messy.  Fortunately, just a couple little cuts on my 2 fingers from cleaning up and my sweet daughter took a hit to the shin from the shrapnel (small cut, we didn’t even notice for an hour or so)…so it could have been much worse.   A trip to Publix for some comfort fried chicken, coleslaw and key lime pie….lesson learned!!

3.  Hubby and I have joined together in prayer and a united front to once and for all (I hope and pray, DEAR GOD HEAR OUR PRAYERS!!!) to break our youngest from her hideous bedtime drama routine.  she’s 8.  It’s so overdue.  After a long talk, a visual chart to mark progress, clear expectations and goal stated, I am pleased to report we are 4 nights in to success!  Fingers and toes crossed and prayers storming heaven!

4.  The weather has been PHENOMENAL all week long….though starting to warm up again.  So I have walked almost every day and today will get day 2 of strength training.  Shooting for 3, but I’m not going to whine about it, something is better than nothing!!!

5.  I have been spending far too much time with Stephanie Plum.  (Hubby is surely kicking himself for introducing us as she keeps me up far later than I should be at night!!)  She’s a train wreck and a clutz (I can really relate there!) and I am addicted.  However, once I finish book 10, I’m putting her away for a bit.  I’m starting to dream about the books in which I am solving the mystery and it’s really ruining it for me.  So….it’s time!

6.  Hubby has taken up our landscaping lumber around our little plant island in the front of the house (it was rotting) and replaced it with huge pavers his dad had lying around their house and it looks great!  I’ll post pics at some point.  probably.  maybe.  once the internet is up and running.

7.  Hubby’s tomatoes are growing!  YAY!  This weekend he’s adding cucumbers and I’m going to get some pots for a herb garden.  Summer is upon us!!!  I foresee lots of salad and salsa in our future…BRING IT!!

Happy weekend and be sure to check out lots of other recaps at Conversion Diary!!  Blessings!!

Aw, shucks! Golly gosh! Thanks!!

Today, Off Duty Mom made my day.  She nominated me for:

Versatile-definition via the free dictionary…am I?  really?  let’s see….

ver·sa·tile (vûrs-tl, -tl)


1. Capable of doing many things competently.  I would say yes.  I am a multi-tasker and can generally do it well….or fake it enough that you THINK I am competent.  (though my friend at work and I have a running joke on our incompetence..)
2. Having varied uses or serving many functions: “The most versatile of vegetables is the tomato” (Craig Claiborne).  Cook.  Dishwasher. Personal shopper. Secretary.  Volunteer. Laundress.  Maid.  Nurse.  Taxi driver.  Teacher.  Wife. Friend.  Mom. Photographer.  Sorta-writer.  Full-time worker bee.  Personal Trainer.  Holy cow, no wonder I’m perpetually exhausted!
3. Variable or inconstant; changeable: a versatile temperament.  Yes.  I’m completely inconstant.  Versatile temperament, check!  I’m sure my kids can attest to my head spinning abilities.  Especially when they have a project due this a.m. and forgot to print it last night. And I can love up on them like no one’s business.  My favorite is in Mass…my 14 year old hates it…
4. Biology Capable of moving freely in all directions, as the antenna of an insect, the toe of an owl, or the loosely attached anther of a flower.  This is a fail.  I’m not so loosey goosey.  I taught aerobics, but I’m more of an “Elaine” dancer for you Seinfeld fans.
Now.  Having never received any type of blogging award, I had to check it out and see what the heck this is.  Never mind that someone not only commented on my blog (LOVE comments!), but liked it enough to give me a shout out; I was blown away.
In a nutshell…. it’s a nice way to recognize some of your favorite bloggers and to let them know in a VERY public manner that they ROCK!  Wow.  Thank you, Off Duty Mom!  I enjoy your blog and look forward to your boy’s clothing store opening to broaden the fashion horizons of little dudes everywhere!!
There are some rules and such that go along with this award and I will just cut and paste from Off Duty Mom:

“if you find yourself nominated, you’ve been awarded The Versatile Blogger award.  And then, you need to pay it forward” by

  • Thanking the person who gave you this recognition
  •  Including a link to their blog
  •  Selecting 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly
  •  Nominating those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award — you might include a link to this site.
  •  Telling  seven things about yourself

Here are my top 15 blogs that I consider versatile in one manner or another:

  1. Charlotte was both
  2. Tamára out Loud
  3. Katrina Anne Willis
  4. Faith Checks
  5. Blog it All
  6. McKMama
  7. Redefining Normal
  8. A Rosey Outlook on Life
  9. Bad Catholic
  10. PhotoBotos
  11. Among Women
  12. In the Heart of my Home
  13. Conversion Diary
  14. Driven!  For His Glory.
  15. Socially Fit

And now for the 7 things about myself that I probably haven’t already blogged about…hmmmm:

  1. I could eat cake and coffee for breakfast everyday.  Apparently so could my grandmother.  But I don’t.  It’s usually oatmeal, a smoothie or eggs.  Cake is more fun.
  2. I love Downton Abbey.  It’s our Friday night date on the couch. Only 2 episodes left until Season 2 is over.  I’ll be in mourning.  Boo hoo.
  3. I am a morning person.  But I like to be up at night when everyone is in bed.  Peace.  Quiet.  AHhhhhhh.
  4. I taught aerobics for several years (stopping with baby #4….ran out of time!)  Loved it.  Paid to work out.  Those were the days.
  5. I am easily overstimulated.  And God blessed us with 4 children.  He has a sense of humor, doesn’t He?
  6. I procrastinate.  Too much. I’m passing it onto my children.  Thank you, Jesus for a Type-A Hubby to save them from this nasty habit!
  7. I am able to help other people figure out a life plan and yet…..those glasses are fuzzy when it comes to my own life.  WHAT?!?!?
  8. I love to snuggle with my Hubby in the morning, unfortunately it’s always right when the alarm goes off and it’s time to get up.  <sigh>
  9. I ran a marathon. Once.   5 hours 40 minutes.  No land speed records, but talk about your endurance.  YOU try running that long.  OK.  I walked a little bit.  Still…..
  10. I am running late for work!  Always!  I’m always trying to do that one.  more.  thing.

Have a great day!!

Heading into Holy week….almost!

— 1 —

One week until Good Friday.  WOW!  I wish I had more “spiritual growth” to report for Lent, but honestly, the biggest changes have come this past week.  Which is the hope anyway, right?  That WE do grow closer to Christ during this solemn time.  I guess my expectations are always bigger than reality, maybe I’m waiting for my own personal “burning bush” moment and need to recognize the smaller daily miracles.  What can I say?  I am a work in progress, let’s hope it’s forward motion though.

— 2 —

We received a sweet Easter “basket” yesterday from my Mom.  The kids LOVED it!! (thanks, Mom) and I promptly put up my Easter dish towels which reminded me I have a cabinet full of Easter decorations that I need to put up, as well as get the kiddos baskets taken care of this week.  I still can’t believe Easter is almost here.  Wow!

— 3 —

Three good workouts in this week.  Two with my girlfriend and one by myself.  Even ventured into the “man area”…you know where the men hog the equipment.  Yep.  I owned it.  Sauntered over like I knew what I was doing (well, I actually did know what I was doing).  Today I pay the price.  But it’s good.  I like my muscles to speak to me.  And it’s a great feeling to have my clothes looser on me.  And for some fun you can check out this blog of all the people you see in the gym, or this blog (my new favorite for motivation) for great fitness tips and inspiration….

— 4 —

Sadly, I had a knee issue this week.  So frustrating.  After almost 18 months of fabulousness, I had some serious swelling and pain after working legs.  I didn’t feel anything while working out, but definitely right after working out.  Something was tweaked.  The GOOD news is, after several days of taking it easy, ICE, elevation and some Alleve, it is way better today with greater range of motion and decreased swelling.  Phew.  Anytime I can stay out of my ortho’s office is a good day.  And when I can avoid another surgery, even better!!

— 5 —

I finished two books this week.  Made to Crave.  Simply a SUPERB book focusing on all the things we often try to fill our “God-shaped hole” with, especially with food.  And things to think about as to WHY we eat when we eat, etc, I simply cannot say enough about how wonderful this book was and what a great Lenten companion.

I also finished Mockingjay.  What.  A Ride.  No spoilers here.  A depressing series (I mean it IS based on a post-Apocalytpic time), however, the action was riveting.  I’m glad it’s done.  I want to read silly, happy stuff now.  Waiting on Hubby to finish so we can go see it with our son, who also read the books.  It KILLED him (son) that he finished first and could NOT discuss the book with me since I was still reading it.  And yes, I cried.  I’m a tender heart.

— 6 —

I am officially part of the Pinterest community.  My daughter’s art teacher told her about it for making some bracelets, so BOOM.  We’re in.  I’ve been avoiding it forever.  I still don’t understand it.  I am completely overwhelmed.  There is nothing on my site except two panda pictures (quite adorable)–they are on my daughter’s board.  Really?  What do I do with this?  I’m sure there is some usefulness to it, but I’m not really sure.  Care to educate me??  Please??  Thanks.

— 7 —

I am starting the “Mary, Undoer of Knots” novena today.  Will take me to Holy Saturday.  I wanted something to really focus on during this last week of Lent.  I did it a few years ago and it was a wonderful novena and a fruitful time.

Have a great weekend, and as always, join in with Jen and many, many others to see their Quick takes!!  Click on the link below!  Blessings!!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!