Saturday, July 26, 2014

Outside my window... Dark.  Hot.

I am thinking... about our upcoming trip to the beach!  I love to just relax there for a week, and let the kids have a chance to just get out in the sand and sun and water and wind every day!  I think we also need to find some more sand shovels... why are beach toys so flimsy nowadays?  Our sand shovels break so easily; we have probably gone through a dozen of them since Caroline was a toddler!

I am wondering... how it will feel to be 35 years old.  Not exactly looking forward to this birthday... I will be considered "advanced maternal age" by OB/GYNs for any pregnancies from this point on... just one good reason to plan for a homebirth, I suppose!
I am praying... about how to keep our school days focused and smooth and relatively pleasant once we begin the year in August... 4th grade, 1st grade, and an almost-three year old!  Also praying for peaceful relationships between husbands and wives as NFP Awareness week comes to a close. 

I am thankful... for a dinner date with my husband last night!

I am hearing... not much... it sounds like Lucy finished singing herself to sleep.  She is up late on days when she takes a nap!

Learning at home... lots of free play time right now!  Outside time as much as they can stand the heat.

From the kitchen... lots of meals from the deep freeze this week... I have a couple soups in there as well as bacon liver meatballs.  Tomorrow night we will grill our grass-fed flank steak for fajitas - yum!!  And I am considering making cinnamon rolls to go along with a late breakfast... brunch, really.  I'm also making lasagna to take to the beach for our first night after arriving there, and I will make more for us to eat early this week as well as to take to a friend who just had a new baby boy recently!

I am reading... How to Teach Your Children Shakespeare by Ken Ludwig.  It is entertaining and looks like a good way to approach Shakespeare with young children!  I need to preview several books for Caroline for school... not read thoroughly, but flip through to get an idea of how difficult they are.  I've also been reading the La Leche League book The Revolutionaries Wore Pearls, about the history of LLL... World Breastfeeding Week is August 1-7, after all!  I want to read something fun and easy at the beach... Pope Awesome and Other Stories is one I have waiting to be read.  I also will probably bring some of Charlotte Mason's homeschooling series along with me.

I read a good children's book, The Kitchen Madonna by Rumer Godden, last week.  A short read, the length of a thin chapter book.

To live the liturgical year... we celebrated the feast of St. Anne, mother of Mary, today by having an ice cream pie that looks like a watermelon... strawberry and lime flavors, red and green since they are St. Anne's traditional colors.  Caroline got a new St. Anne holy card since it is her "name day."  We might also make watermelon smoothies tomorrow (which means lemon juice and pureed watermelon with a sprig of mint)... every time I make these, I puree them in my food processor and then watermelon juice sloshes out.  Sticky, lemony juice.  Maybe I should either try smaller batches or do it in my blender this year!!

One of my favorite things... being lazy.  There, I said it.  I like to sit around and relax.  Another favorite thing, though, would be my LLL Group.  We had a "breastfeeding cafe" style meeting this morning at a local coffee shop, and it is so nice to be able to see other moms enjoying their nursing babies and toddlers!  After we get back from the beach, we are having a family LLL cookout in celebration of World Breastfeeding Week - yay!
I am creating... final lesson schedule layouts for the upcoming school year.  I like for us to a few pages from various books once or twice a week... for instance, Caroline will be reading a few pages from a British history book twice a week, we will be doing Shakespeare once a week, the Burgess Bird Book for Children once a week... lots of variety, lots of rich literature, but brief periods for each... 20-30 minute sessions for each book.  Many books will last all school year done this way.

I created this a couple nights ago... the last painting for Caroline's bird-themed bedroom.  I think I had waaaay too much fun flinging the silver paint around.  But acrylics wipe off vinyl kitchen flooring very easily! ;)

Around the house... trying to straighten and clean out so we will be able to have a fresh start this school year.  I want to purge some more toys and junk... little things seem to accumulate, to reproduce somehow, especially little things like paper and such.  I want to have things organized so that I can pull out a few new things for Lucy at the beginning of each week and have everything else out of her reach - give her variety to keep her entertained but also to give her a rhythm of the days, that I am not going to be fetching random stuff from top closet shelves - what is out is what you get for the week!  I was trying to clean all the windows and blinds... I got the bathrooms and bedrooms done, so that is pretty good progress.  And I am still trying to find an IKEA Kura bed for Cecilia and Lucy... I got a Craigslist app that is supposed to alert me when one is listed, but it is not working right... waa.  Once we find one, I can get their room better organized.  I want it toddler-proofed so Lucy can have rest time in there on days she doesn't fall asleep for a nap... so she's not in my room rummaging through my bathroom cabinets, bedside table drawers, etc. when she is supposed to be resting.  I want to make Cecilia's bedroom to be hers too, meaning the only things she can get into in there will be the shelves of books, clothes in the dresser, shoes in the closet, and a few non-breakable knick-knacks on the dresser.  Although the breakable Winnie the Pooh music box will probably stay, since it is already broken... poor Tigger and Piglet have no ears. :(  They got broken off one time many years ago when we had a bunch of people over and apparently all the kids got too wild in the bedroom!  Once I get that bed in there, my fanciful plan is to cut a tree out of a big thin board (I am good at making big trees; ask my husband - it is part of the story of how we fell in love), paint it, and attach it to the bed - it will be Pooh's house, complete with an M. R. Sanders sign... or it might be Piglet's house with a Tresspassers Will sign.  I will ask Cecilia which she prefers!

Pondering these words... "No book is really worth reading at age ten which is not equally worth reading at age 50." -C. S. Lewis

A few plans for the rest of the week... We went to Mass this evening but Chris will go again in the morning to make an announcement about RCIA classes and man the table after Mass for anyone who wants to sign up.  Then the girls have swim lessons every evening from 6:00-7:00, hence all the dinners from the deep freeze.  They take lessons from a lady who teaches small groups in her backyard pool, one week a year.  I am considering taking them to Atlanta for the day one day to swim at my parents' neighborhood pool and so I can do a Trader Joe's run.  And Chris's sister and her two boys are going to come visit one day so the cousins can play together somewhere hopefully outdoors and water-related.  Then, it's time to pack for the beach!  I will start doing that on Thursday.  A busy week!  But it is full of summer activities before we start back to school in mid-August.

A picture thought I am sharing...

Some leftover Independence Day photos:


Lisa Boyle said...

Hi Erin! So glad to read your post and catch up on all you and your daughters have been doing. Happy early birthday! I cannot believe how big your girls are! Wow!!!!! Where has the time gone? :-)

Carrie said...

I always enjoy these posts!
Our Kura bed doesn't have enough usable pieces to be put back together again, but we do have the blue star canopy you could have if you are interested in that part of it.