Friday, October 02, 2015

Long Time, No Update...

I'm often finding myself too busy to update the blog... I really should make a grocery list right now, or sweep, or do laundry, or something otherwise useful, but I will throw out a little update here.  We are doing very well, just busy!  Chris and I went to Austin and San Antonio, Texas - first trip alone with no kids ever, since before Caroline was born over ten years ago.  He had a business trip in Austin, and I attended the evening events with him - snacks and drinks the first night, a full dinner and party with live band the next (and they played Bon Jovi and Metallica, so it was pretty awesome).  It was a conference for computer geeks, so it has a Star Wars theme:

Lucy turned four a few weeks ago... getting so old.  She is still nursing once a day and the trip didn't stop her, of which I was glad.  She is almost done, I know.  She can finish up at her leisurely year-long pace if she wants.  The girls all stayed with my parents - we just dropped them off on our way to the airport in Atlanta.  I had not flown since 1997!!!  Honestly, it wasn't much different.  I expected a much bigger hassle, but we had plenty of time to spare and even rode the train (which sadly does not sound like this anymore - but I pulled this audio up and listened on the train for old time's sake) to all the concourses - to visit my brother who was passing through on a connecting flight, and to see the newest concourse, the international concourse F.  With Hartsfield being the only airport you are used to (I used to hang out there in high school), most other airports seem pretty lame.  The flight to Austin announced that we would be landing at gate 6.  Just gate 6.  Not E6, or B6.  Just 6.  So, flying was fun, if not a bit unnerving after so long.

Look who we found!

Giant Chupa-Chups and Mentos... only in the international terminal of the airport...

On the plane, trying not to be scared to take off
San Antonio was lots of fun.  We stayed on the River Walk and explored there on Saturday, along with visiting the five mission churches in the area.  We drove there from Austin in a rental car.  A yellow 2015 VW Beetle, ha ha.  Our hotel was in a historic bank building downtown.  It is lots of fun to walk down the River Walk - way too many restaurants to choose from, and ice cream shops!

hotel lobby - the Drury Inn

The Alamo

Cathedral in downtown, directly across from our hotel.  They do a light show on the front of the building every night!

prayer intention in the cathedral

Creepy monkey thing that asked us to "please play with me" while we waited to get ice cream cones

ice cream while waiting for our boat tour ride!
So, what else have we been up to?  Lots of feast day celebrating this week.  We had the feast of the archangels on Monday, St. Jerome on Wednesday, St. Therese on Thursday, and the guardian angels today.  Here are some of the meals we had to incorporate the saints on these days:

Feast of the Archangels... apple chicken, angel hair pasta, steamed carrots, salad, blackberry cobbler

The cobbler is for St. Michael the Archangel... legend says when he kicked Lucifer out of heaven, the devil fell in a blackberry bush, spoiling them so that they are no good to eat after this date every year. 

Lion pizza for St. Jerome, said to have befriended a lion.  Tapioca starch pizza crust, yum!

French Onion soup for St. Therese of Liseaux... homemade beef bone brothsimmered since Monday to make this!  Topped with sourdough and raw gruyere that was under the broiler for a minute.

Our homeschool co-op is going along nicely.  We finished geology and began anatomy this week.  I am in the nursery with the preschool group this quarter, so I brought some angel coloring pages and watercolor paints as well as a little angel craft mobile to make and hang up there.  Thinking of more games and activities we can do with them, maybe some songs and rhymes to give them a little preschool-type experience.  Next quarter, beginning in January, I will be leading a unit on writing and literature.  We'll be singing parts of speech songs, playing games to learn prepositions and adverbs - which they can begin adding consciously to their writing to add interest - reading from a chapter book and practicing restating/rewriting things from memory, and more that I haven't fleshed out yet.  I will need to start prepping folders for each kid sometime.

the earth's plates


Our Little Flowers Group is also off to a good start... only seven girls this year, but they had fun at the first meeting playing games and they are enthusiastic about earning badges.  Next week our meeting will be followed by a family cookout!  Fire pit, hot dogs, marshmallows, and everybody bringing sides to share.

I'm also busy typing up the LLL of Georgia Area Conference program booklet - that will be the first weekend on November!  The conference is so much fun; I haven't missed one since Caroline was 13 months old!  It is being held at Jekyll island, so we will be making it an extended trip to explore the area a few days after as a family.

Hmm, what else interesting?  Chris pulled the sliding doors off the tub last night.  They need to go.  the gasket underneath was all rotted out.  Maybe it will be easier to keep it clean without the doors there against the edge of the tub.  He worked his butt off though, until close to midnight last night!  Oh, and yesterday I got to explain to my older two what circumcision was... yeah, that was fun.  They were absolutely horrified - and I didn't go into graphic detail.  It came up as we were reading a book about the life of Jesus, and it mentioned that on the 8th day following his birth, he shed his blood for the first time at his circumcision.  So Caroline asked what that meant, why he shed his blood as a newborn.  I figured they needed to know about it sooner or later, and not having any brothers, this may be the most teachable moment I get.  I told them that it was a rite the Jews did on all baby boys, but in the Bible Paul explained that circumcision is not necessary for salvation and that it is under the old Jewish laws like not eating pork and such, not the new Christian faith, so it is not something that we are bound to have done to our babies... but that many people still practiced circumcision today for non-religious reasons as well.  Figured I wouldn't go much into the cultural American aspect of it with them!  I was actually surprised at how horrified they were; I figured they'd just say "gross" or laugh or something.

Lots of things going on this month... lots of chances for fun outdoor activities, like apple picking and such.  Busy month of October!

Well, dinner time is here, so I better go cook!  But I will leave you with something that may just be more terrifying than circumcision:
The mascot on this sign is the stuff nightmares are made of.  This is near where Chris grew up.  Is it a man-butterfly, or an angel, or... what???  Why is his face painted??  I'm terrified that if I went in there, a real person would be dressed up like this inside.  good thing I don't need quick cash!

Okay, that would be mean to leave you with that as the last picture... so here are Lucy's birthday flowers.  Got them from a local farm that sells at our farmer's market.