Friday, November 15, 2013

7 Quick Takes - #10

Hello, Hello!  One week later.  I had started writing a post this week titled Why do I suck at life?  I haven't deleted it, but I doubt I will ever post it.  It was self-deprecating as the title might lead you to believe.  I mean there was some, but as negative and it could be our has been in the past.  It was just me trying to figure out way very normal tasks for most people is so difficult for me to manage.  Anyway, it's more boring than normal so I spared you. You're welcome.
I am getting my mo-jo back in terms of working out.  Like most new adventures or life style changes or whatever you want to call it I have a 3 month expiration date. Many like to call it burn out, I call it laziness.  There are lots of factor in play here, but they are excuses or easy outs.  I pushed through October, and I'm starting to rid my mind of the negative thoughts I was having.  Gracey has been awesome at keeping things positive to help me out of my mental rut.
Leave was approved y'all!!!!  This little Lockhart clan will be making its way down to NC for Thanksgiving.  Actually, we will be traveling on Thanksgiving because they are having Chris run a range during Thanksgiving block leave because "no one was going to take leave" we were.  Oh well, it stinks to be traveling on Thanksgiving, but we will be there the whole next week as well.  Stoked!  We haven't left NY since Thanksgiving last year.  And we have only seen Chris's parents when they visited in July.
So we have been buying thing here and there for Christmas.  Everything that we have bought has been secondhand with the exception of some dirt cheap clearance I pounced on.  We don't buy our kids stuff throughout the year.  There have been a few birthdays we haven't bought them gifts, but Christmas we "do it up"...kinda.  We wrap EVERYTHING.  On Christmas Eve there is NOTHING under the tree.  Not even the gift that have been sent from family.  Christmas morning the room is full of presents.  Owen has reached an age that Christmas is so much fun.  Last year was pretty great.  And Amelia is so much more aware of things than Owen was at 3.  We are already talking about Jesus' birthday.  I think I am going to make a birthday cake.  Or maybe fun fetti pancakes.  We will come up with something.
Our FRG organized a family game night/movie night thing this evening.  I had a great time.  The kids had a great time.  I didn't have to cook dinner.  I met some new people.  Overall, I really great evening.  I love games.  I think I get that from my dad.  Well, Chris creamed me at Yahtzee this evening.  Twice.  
Chris is juggling so much lately.  I feel for him.  Not only is he working hard and helpful at home, but he is finishing up school too.  On the bright side, if everything works out like we hope (which for us rarely does) he will be done January 2015.  Just over a year isn't too bad.  Each term is 9 weeks so not too bad.  I will be almost as glad as him that it is over.  As long as life/the Army doesn't get too crazy then after a year. 
I have nothing else.  Have a great week.
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

7 Quick Take - #9

I'm here to rant another day! Lucky you ;)  The past week has been overall pretty great.  Nothing overly exciting, but nothing completely horrible.  I'm sure going to confession is the reason for the peace I have while dealing with life.  I love life, but I kinda suck at it...cough, cough...why I need to embrace confession more often.  I really do wish I had someone with me all day long saying..."get off your butt and start the dish washer."..."No, you do not want to eat that."...."And no, you do not need to buy that."..."Yes, take a shower, good choice."  Most days I really think I need that guidance.  But, since that is probably NOT going to happen.  I will continue to pray, stumble through, and try to do better.
I LOVE THE HOLIDAYS!  From Columbus Day to Martin Luther King Jr. Day is my FAVORITE time of year. I love the smells, the food, the weather, the feeling, the clothing, the music, the colors, the festivities, the atmosphere...ALL OF IT!  My kids are now at an age that they are aware, and are excited too.  Really, from here on out, this time of year can always be...magical. 
Hello four day weekend!!! Friday through Monday Chris is off.  Today, the kids went to school, I went to CrossFit, and we made a quick trip to the store for some odds and ends.  Other than church we plan on staying locked in our house all weekend.  Oh, I can't wait.  I'm hoping we can do some purging...I have hoarding tendencies so this house is always in need of purging...but if we only sit around all weekend that's ok too.
If you read my blog then we are probably friends on Facebook too.  Did you see my new hair cut?  Katie did a great job, huh!?!  Seriously, I haven't had my hair cut in a year! Not even a trim.  I didn't measure how much was cut off, but I used a tape measure to get an estimation.  Approximately 12 inches...give or take.
My hair had NEVER been this long.

 If may hair gets that long again just sneak attack me and cut it off.  I'm sure my hair doing abilities are not going to improve in this life time.  Short hair is more manageable, more put together, less homely, and looks healthier.  I LOVE it!  I might even go shorter next time.  Now I just need my eyebrows shaped and I just might be able to convince people that I do kind of care about my appearance. I do care...but I am victim of the Mom's appearance takes the back seat because it's one less thing to think about. 

Owen keeps asking for a dog...not going to happen.  I'm pretty sure I'm allergic. Not the throat closing up allergic.  Just a runny nose and itchy eyes allergic.  I'm like that with cats too.  Nothing a little bit of Benedryl can't take care of, but NO.  I could list all the reasons, but I won't bother.  Maybe a fish...but fish freak me out so maybe not.
Jim Gaffigan's Mr. Universe cracks me up!!! It's on Netflix.  Oh go watch it, seriously. 
I mentioned last week that I am praying for my family right now...our future is really foggy.  The fog is lifting...sort of...slowly.  I'm still asking for prayers.  We are saying a rosary every evening at 10pm EST.  If you could say one too every once in a while at the same time with us it would be great!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Ramblings: Confession

So, I went to confession yesterday.  Yeah...  I'm not sure if I'm allowed to pick favorites when it come to the Holy Sacraments, but I do.  And confession is not my favorite.  Actually, it could very well be my least favorite.  Holy Orders and Anointing of the Sick are two that I have not received.  Holy Orders I will never receive since I'm not a man and all.  And, Anointing of the Sick...I will ask for it when I need it.  I don't want to get sick, but it's likely I will need it someday.  So I guess I'm not looking forward to that Sacrament like I am looking forward to Simon's Baptism.

Anyway, Baptism, Communion, Confirmation, and Marriage are wonderful celebrations.  I am no theologian.  Nor am a I a strong voice for my faith.  I don't have eloquent words or profound insight to give you as to why these Sacraments are so amazing and so, so necessary for all of us.   But I love them.  Confession on the other hand. not so much love.  Though, I understand the purpose and the need for regular Reconciliation.

This was the first time I truly examined my conscience.  In the past I would wing it in the confessional.  Maybe a little mental prep as I stood in line during the Lenten Reconciliation service, but not a true examination.  This was the first time I really used the 10 Commandments and examined myself.  It was revealing.  I knew I was a sinner...But man am I a SINNER.  I had to write them down....pages!  Yea...that "Catholic Guilt" thang. 

Confession is hard.  It is hard to examine my conscience.  It is hard to realize how often I sin.  It is hard to not be overly scrupulous.  It is hard to take ownership of those sins.  It it hard to ask for forgiveness.  It is hard to try not to do it again.  It is sometimes hard to be forgiven, and yet it is so easy for God to forgive.  I just have to ask for His forgiveness.

I know being absolved of my sins regularly makes the celebrations of the other Holy Sacraments, like the Holy Eucharist, so much better and fulfilling and the celebration that much richer.  And being cleansed of my sins lightens my mental/emotional/physical load so I can nurture my relationship with God, my husband, and my children.  I know how great it feels when that load has been divinely lifted.  I even know that I will not be judged or ridiculed or mocked for my many, many, many, short comings, but I still find confession hard. 

I'm not sure what my point is.  I never really have a point, do I?  I'm glad I went.  I am going to try to go more regularly.  And hopefully, I can develop a deep love for this precious Sacrament that God has given us.

Friday, November 1, 2013

7 Quick Takes - #8

We made it through Birthday WeekAmelia is 3Simon is 1.  (And Owen is still 4...until March at least).  In between potty breaks, laundry, and cooking I have fleeting thoughts of how our family has changed in the past 5 years.  It baffles me really.  Even though there was a time when all three of our kids didn't exist, it's hard to remember that time.  I don't know quite how to say what I mean.  Having 3 kids is normal.  To think about life when we only had 1 or 2 though it did exist and was normal seems not normal.
Ok, moving on.  Maybe it's the time or maybe it's my brain teetering on the edge of sugar coma, but that first take of mine was just too much. Anyway...Halloween!  Here in Northern New York has been pretty in the forties for the past several days.  Well, temps creeped up close to sixty!  However, it came at a wet, rainy price.  It worked out ok, but the it was a bit touch and go for the first hour of trick or treating.  

Jack Frost
Full discloser.  I prefer homemade costumes to store bought ones. Actually, it's not so homemade vs. store bought.  I just don't want to run into several other kids with the same super hero costume.  So last year when Owen despreately want to be a Power Ranger I was a little bummed.  I was a little surprise at how cute I thought he was.  I mean, he's always cute.  I was just shocked that I was excited to see him dressed up as his favorite character.  I still prefer a less popular costumes.  Chris and I fully admit that we plugged this Jack Frost costume.  We had grand plans that we didn't fully execute.  I know for me it was fear of "messing it up".  Anyway, it's hard to see, but there is frost on the hoodie and Chris made the staff.  I am happy with how it turned out.

Ready for her school parade.
I bought this monster costume last year after Halloween.  This is an example of a store bought costume that I prefer.  I think it's adorable and she is less likely to cross paths with another kid wearing the same costume (though it is possible).  She actually only wore this to her birthday party and her Halloween parade.  For actual trick or treating she chose to be Snow White.  And yes she was beyond precious.  And yes we ran into other Snow Whites.  And no it was not the end of the world.  And YES I am neurotic and totally over-thinking Halloween costumes for these kids.

Simon was Frankenstein.  I had saved this from Owen's first Halloween.  And he was just a cute as his brother was four years ago. 

Crossfit update.  So if you know me a little you about know my love for food and doing a whole lot of nothing.  Any time I do anything health related I am good for 3 months...Then I'm not.  So I hit 3 months and mentally I was/am/was having a hard time.  I didn't/don't/didn't want to do it any longer.   CrossFit is great.  Gracey is GREAT.  My problem is ME.  I let Gracey know that mentally I'm struggling just getting to the gym.  Once I'm there is not the problem.  So things seem to be turning around.  I had a great week last week at the gym.  The WODs were my type of WODs....Then this week happened.  I haven't been at all this week!  CWOC, Halloween festivities for the kids, All Saints Day activities and mass have clashed with gym hours.  I actually felt/feel/felt like I am coming out of this mental sump.  So I hope this unexpected week off does not hinder the up swing of this slump I was/am/was in. 
Back to Halloween for a minute.  So I had plans with my friend to take the kids trick or treating.  We did.  Our neighborhood was difficult.  First, it was hard to see if porch lights were on because of how the houses and garages are laid out.  And more importantly,  only a few people were handing out candy.  So we drove to another neighborhood.  It was easier to see porch lights and there were more porch lights lit.  So I parked the car leave the hazard lights on, and move the car as needed.   Well, my van died. 
I am looking forward to November!!!!  The hope is to be in NC for Thanksgiving.  As always, we are still waiting on leave approval, and nothing major popping up.  We haven't left New York since November last year.  We have only left Watertown once and that was to Niagara when my in-laws visited this summer.  I'm looking forward to seeing our family. 
I am praying for our family right now, and I am asking for prayers if you will.  Without going into tons of details and what if scenarios, it is unclear which direction we are suppose to go.  I know where I want us to go, and I hope that is where we are headed.  But I don't know if that is truly what's in store for our family.  So yea, if you can help out with this vague prayer request it would be appreciated.  Sincerely appreciated! 
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Simon is 1!

Well, birthday week has officially came to a close.  I had a post all typed up and ready to post on Simon's actual birthday just like I had on Amelia's, but it was lost.  So here we go!

Simon, like all of the little Lockharts, has been a perfect addition to our family.  His smile is contagious.

Editing props to Elizabeth DeJesus!
And his cry is blood curdling.

And his love for nursing is real!

Milk coma
He has been the best newborn, but my toughest infant to date. He loves to be held by anyone, but he is partial to his mother.  He loves to clap, take baths, crawl, stand, play with cars, being startled, and play with his siblings.  He hates shoes, socks, clothes, and sometimes diapers.  The boy does love to be naked.

At birth Simon started as large as the other two weighing in at 10lbs 10oz, but he has had a slightly slower growth rate in his first year (roughly 22lbs 8oz).  He is not walking yet, though he has been attempting for the past couple of months by standing unassisted and managing a couple of steps.  We are hoping for fully committed walking any day now.

Simon, you and your siblings have proven to be very different people.  We look forward to see what your second year of life has in store.  Your curiosity and independence will likely grow faster than your lexicon which will lead to many meltdowns. Bring it!  It will be worth it to watch you learn.  You swell our hearts,  Happy Birthday little man.  You bring us so much joy!

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Amelia is 3!

Amelia is FINALLY three!!! With my boys I'm in awe of how quickly the time has passed, but with Lady A not so much.  I'm NOT complaining about this!!! But time moves at steady pace so it just seems weird that I would have these conflicting feelings about my kids' rate of growth.  I will say, I'm sure this feeling stems from her ability to communicate (and age two was a little tough...not gonna lie).  The girl has been speaking in full sentences since she was 18 months, and she hasn't shut up since :)  Really, her comprehension and understanding still surprises me.  She's a smart cookie.

While eating breakfast
Amelia: "I'm going to eat all of my food.  I'm going to grow big, big, big.  I will grow as big as the house.  And I will crush it.  And I will put the freezer in the oven."

She's imaginative.

While using the bathroom
Amelia: "I pooped my energies out."

She's a scientist

Caught drawing on the wall
Me"What are you doing?"
Amelia: "I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry."

She's an artist

She sings Happy Birthday to everyone (not because her birthday is approaching just because she likes the song and everyone gets a turn)
Amelia: "One, two, three, four....Happy Birthday to you, Happy Birthday to you, Happy birthday dear (insert name), Happy Birthday to you."

She's a musician

Me: "Amelia, you're such a mess."
Amelia: "Yeeeaaahhhh!!!!  HAAAHAAAAHAAAA (in her weird honky laugh)

She's self-aware.

In the mornings
Me: "Let's get dressed."
Amelia: Growls "I can do it."  while snatching the clothes from my hand.
Me: .....
Amelia: Pleasantly "I need help."

She wants to be independent.  

Wakes up crying.
Me: "Amelia honey, what's wrong?"
Amelia: "I want to go trick or treat."
Me: "You will get to go on Halloween.  Who said you can't go?"
Amelia: "O...O...Oweeeennnnn." 

She trusts her brother, even in her dreams. 

Trend setter..notice the shoes on the wrong feet.

Favorite foods: pizza, french fries, cake

Favorite colors: Pink and purple

Favorite past times:  dancing, singing, drawing, eating, drinking, making her brothers cry, playing teacher, being a helper, watching others clean up

Favorite letter: A or O

She is a fiery spirit filled with curiosity.  She keeps us on our toes, for sure.  She is funny and kind.  She knows what she wants, and sometimes she just takes it (hide your drinks, hide your food, yo!!).  She is her brothers' biggest fan, next to Chris and me of course.  She is clumsy.  She is loud.  She is dramatic.  She is joyful.  She reminds us to pray before meals.  She loves silky fabric blankets.  She is loveable.

I am so glad that we were chosen to be her earthly parents.  She busted into this world in 2 quick hours and our lives have been blessed since.  Happy Birthday my sweet girl. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Birthday week

Birthday week is upon us.  Amelia's birthday is Wednesday and Simon's is Saturday.  I almost feel like I should be 9 months pregnant and ready to pop.  If we are blessed with another baby I would like to give October a break...January has a beautiful birthstone :)

Anyway.  We are having a Halloween birthday party.  I suggested it to Amelia and she was all for it.  She loves Halloween.  She pick Halloween books year round.  I suggested it because it would give the kids another chance to wear their costumes.  Owen is being Jack Frost from Rise of the Guardians.  Amelia is being a purple monster princess.  Simon will be either Darth Vader or Frankenstein. I think for trick or treating he will definitely be Frankenstein because it's a warmer costume.  It's Owen's first costume too.

We are going to try am make this happen.

2009 Owen's first Halloween

Amelia showing off her costume a few months ago
I have a few goals this week for the blog.  I am going to try and write Amelia's and Simon's birth stories (here's Owen's) along with some notes about what they are like as we approach year 3 and year 1.  They are both awesome additions to this family.  Their wild antics keep us laughing, loving, crying, yelling, and cussing (striving for sainthood is hard!)  But mostly they keep us laughing and loving.  A friend posted that with each kid your love is multiplied not divided.  So true.  I hope the love keeps multiplying.  These kids, Owen too, make me want to love more.  I don't think domesticity/parenting comes naturally to me.  Order most definitely does not.  But the swell of my heart watching each kid sleeping as a newborn to putting on their clothes independently is like a drug that I want more of.  The plan for our family is being revealed one day at a time, and we will do our best to happily accept whatever is in store for us.  Right now we are blessed with 3 wonderful children who fill this home with joy.

Friday, October 11, 2013

7 Quick Takes - #7

Yay!!! I remembered it is Friday.  Well, only after thinking it was Saturday, but that doesn't matter.  What matters is is that I remembered to connect with Jennifer Fulwiler at  Yay, Nicole - 1, Life -7629243723818465!!!!!  Take that!  ;)
I'm thinking about moving my blog...I know I'm using a free site, but they have added ads within the content of my posts and a big ad in the middle of my admin page.  It's annoying and hard to read.  So unless I figure how to remove theses ads I may look at other sites.  We will see.
We are decorating for Halloween.  Amelia and Simon's birthdays are in two weeks.  (Let me just say I can't believe Simon is going to be 1.  But with Amelia I can't believe she is only 3.  It's a weird conundrum I am still trying to figure out.)  So we are having a joint birthday, and to make it easy it's a Halloween party.  The kids are thrilled and I am hopeful everyone will have fun.  So we are getting a little festive outside.  We have some tomato cages that we plan to wrap with lights at Christmas to make Christmas trees.  Well we figured we could be a white plastic over them and make ghosts.  We are short a few extension cords so they don't light up yet, but I'm happy with the turn out.  Some of the ghost have white lights some have red.  I may get some black felt to give them eyes.  Along the walkway are 3 black trees with purple lights and a light up jack o lantern.  What you do think?
Ghost family
A few weeks ago I wrote a post about why we are considering homeschooling.  The more time that passes the more excited I become about the possibilities.  Not to say that it isn't also know, if I fail them they are the ones who suffer.  But hearing from friends and seeing their Facebook posts about homeschooling has me looking forward to next year.  Science experiments, art projects, reading, and field trips done together as a family.  I'm excited to cultivate a stronger learning environment for all of us.
Even though I remembered it was Friday I am having a hard time filling all the quick takes. Just happy to be here, folks! Chris and I celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary! Check it out!
The CWOC kickoff meeting when really well.  There was a lot of hard work to keep this group from fizzling away.  With 28 ladies at the kickoff meet, and a few emails of ladies who couldn't attend the kick off but plan to is awesome!  St. Micheal's parish is flourishing.  Great things are going to happen this year; I can feel it.
Happy Friday, y'all.  It's all I got for today.  
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

8 incredible years, and other stuff

Let me begin by saying sorry for the month off.  As always, it was unintended.  I'm not sure how those pro bloggers do it.  Not that I'm aspiring to be a pro blogger, but it must be a true passion or the just have a lot to say.  Many of them really have a true gift in making the ordinary something worth talking about.  No here, yo.  I'm here to bore you to tears :)

Anyway, I will hit the highlights and then get to the meat of this post.
  • I finished the 30 Day Challenge.  In 30 days I lost 18 pounds and 21.25 inches.  Since starting CrossFit I have lost 34.75 inches.  Of course these measurments were taken a week ago.  Since then I have been benge eating.  I admit I feel gross, and my digestive system does not thank me for it.  And I'm having a hard time stopping.  So, I'm working to get myself back on track.  I want to lose the weight I have put back on and about 30 more pounds.
    Left: First day of CF Right: 1 week of CF
    Day 1 of 30 Day Challenge

    18 pounds down (ignore my weird hands)

    21.25 inches gone
  • This is my 100th post.  It only took 4 years.  Those professional bloggers out there likely write that many in a year.  Not that I'm looking to go pro, but it's cool that there are people out there with awesome things to share.  Or have the talent to make everyday things really interesting or at least funny.
  •  Tomorrow is the kickoff for CWOC, formally known as MCCW, and I'm the appointed president.  I don't really feel like I'm doing anything because I have some awesome ladies who are doing a stellar job getting everything ready.  I'm not looking to remain the president, but a leader was needed.  We will see where God take me in this new role.  But more importantly where it takes this group and our parish.  
  • Chris and I are making some light up lawn ghosts for Halloween.  I'm optimistic they will turn out pretty cute.  Hopefully I will post its awesomeness or its complete failure very soon.
Yesterday was our anniversary.  Chris and I have been married for 8 years.

October 7, 2005

 8 years, 3 kids, 1 deployment, nearly 5 years given to the Army, 7 vehicles,  9 moves, lots of laughs, a few tears, empty pockets, and full hearts.

I'm so happy we found each other so quickly.  I only wish we had gotten married sooner.

Chris is an incredible man, and I am so blessed he wanted me to share his life him.  He's funny, kind, hardworking, generous, short-tempered, and most importantly he make AWESOME brownies :)  Everything he does, he does for the kids and me.  As cliche as it may sound, I love him more everyday.   Our future will always be bright as long as we keep each other by our sides, our children at our feet, and our family's focus on God.   

Friday, August 30, 2013

7 Quick Takes - #6

August has been cray y'all!  I have missed a few Friday, 7 Quick Takes.  I'm not sure what has made it so ridiculous and September is starting to look just as busy.  Owen and Amelia will be going to school five days a week, I am doing CrossFit five days a week, speech Mondays and Wednsdays, soccer on Mondays, dance on Wednesdays, CWOC on Saturdays, and teaching CCD (now I think it is PSR) on Sundays are all things I have managed to build into my schedule.  Of course there will still be other appointments peppered throughout each month.  I'm not really sure how or why I have managed to take on so much, but I'm making it work for now.  And I am going to have to start saying no even if I really, really want to say yes.  I'm excited about being busy honestly, but I have to get into a groove so I can balance this house.
Sunday!  I beginning my 30 day Paleo Challenge hosted by Gracey at her gym.  Gracey weighed and taped me today.  We took the before picture.  Chris is going to do the challenge too...reluctantly.  I'm glad that I don't have to combat temptation at home since he is doing it with me.  I'm hoping for big results.  Even though I haven't lost any weight I am definitely seeing a change in the shape of my body.  I am starting to think that my belly is too damaged from three pregnancies and a lifetime of being overweight.  But I just hope that I don't end up with a toned body with a sagging sack of skin hanging in the front.  Anyway here's my before picture, though you may have seen it on Facebook.
Left: before I started CrossFit
Right: One week or CF down..excuse the mess...or don't.

7 weeks of CF down.  Starting the 30 Day Challenge
So, yea...come at me September! I am hoping for drastic results since I'm pretty chunky. 
All you medical right knee keeps swelling.  I can walk on it.  There is a dull ache and by the end of the day I can't fully bend it.  It feels funny rather than painful.  I'm sure that this CrossFitting is putting my body in a bit of shock.  I'm hoping once the pounds start coming off and my diet changes that there will be little to no swelling.  You know me, always the whiner.
 If you missed it, you should check out my post on reasons why we might homeschool.  I think writing it down was a good idea.  I have read over it a couple of times and I'm starting to feel at peace about it.  We will see what next year has in store with so many things in the air, but I really have a great support system.  Feel free to leave comment or resources that I might find helpful.  Seriously, my Google searches and Pinterest searches for that matter have about homeschooling.  There is lots of information out there, help finding the good stuff is always welcomed!
I bought the kids some new shoes this evening.  I actually put out a little bit more money than usual.  In general I do not care about name brand.  Especially, when you are talking about children who are growing like weeds.  I will admit that they're cute little baby shoes, but if they are not walking it is just for show and it's just not a priority.  Well, I have been reading and thinking and looking at my children's nearly flat hooves (poor Amelia, she really has some ugly feet).  I am thinking that they might need a little bit of arch support especially while they are growing.  I am probably way over thinking it and trying to justify my purchase.  The kids loved them and they really are cute.
Chris and I are going to be teaching 4th grade PSR (formally known as CCD).  Basically, Sunday school.  Actually, Chris agreed to be in the same room as me while I try to teach the 4th graders.  I'm hoping that the kids like having a guy around.  Especially any boys who are in the class.  I'm a little nervous and I would like him there to help.  If nothing else, just be some moral support. 
Wednesday Amelia begins preschool and Owen starts pre-K.  I am going to have two hours a day with only Simon.  It is going to feel weird for sure.  I will miss those other two turkeys though.  They crack me up.  They cheer me on and tell me good job over the most ordinary things.  And they are so genuine.  Any way.  I hope everyone has a fun, safe Labor Day weekend!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


Yea, I'm back.  I guess I'm trying to make up for the twenty days I didn't post anything.  I don't know but....Amelia got into the Orange Room and the CDC.  It's the preschool that Owen has been in for almost two years.  I'm so excited for her. I think she is going to do well.  In the past two years Chris, the teachers, and I have worked together to help Owen learn to manage his emotions and become more independent.  Though, Amelia doesn't have the same issues as Owen I think with reinforcement in a different environment will do wonders for her.  She has been eager to go to school for at least six months.  I am so glad it was worked out so she could attend.

I figure I would use all this school excitement to share with you all our decision about homeschooling.  We are about 80% sure we will begin homeschooling next fall.  I leave that 20% because it's a year away and we don't know what life will throw us in that time.  Our plan is not always God's plan.

I will share some of the bullet points as to why we are making this choice for our family.
  • We want to give our children a strong Catholic foundation.  Assuming there will always be a great Catholic school wherever we may live (which will not always be likely) Catholic school gets expensive. 
  • We would only have to combat with one schedule.  Chris's schedule dictates most of our plans.  If we use a school institution we would have to adhere to school schedule also.  So if Chris is granted leave and it doesn't line up with spring break, summer break, or Christmas break it will not matter.  The kids will be home and we can choose to take a break while Chris has a break also. 
  • Statics show show that on average homeschooled children are in about the 85 percentile in all subjects.  Meaning on average they have a better understanding of the material than 85% of their peers. 
  • The kids can learn the way they are designed to learn.  I think homeschoolers do so well because they have learned how to learn in a way that is best for them. Basically, a homeschooler can more easily discover their strengths and develop those strengths to learn.  If they are an auditory learner then we will incorperate more listening.  If they are a visual learner we will add more visual aids.  I know MANY wonderful teacher who passionately want to help each of their students to develop their skill so they can successed, but in the end they are overworked with 20+ other students to focus on.  
  • We do NOT like the common core curriculum.  If we homeschool we get to choose the curriculum.
  • Socialization.  Most people's question to me about possibly homeschooling is "what about socialization?"  My kids are social.  They make friends.  We will continue to put them in activities like t-ball, dance, and CCD.  We will find a homeschooling group in our area to join.  It is often overlooked that there are negative sides of socialization like bullying, drugs, sex, and school shootings.  Some may feel it's sheltering them, but I think it's protecting them.  Chris and I are fully capable of exposing them to the world and without throwing them into the deep end...sink or swim.
  • Lifestyle.  I have read many blogs, and I have listened to first hand experiences of people who have been or are currently homeschooling.  I want a home environment that homeschooling offers.  Prayer and housework will be part of our school day.  Our older children will be teaching our younger children because they will be sitting at the same table.  We will attend daily Mass (my goal is once a week). The list goes on and on.  
  • Firsts.  You know this just dawned on me a few days ago, but I was/am so excited to watch each of our babies achieve each of their milestones like smiling, sitting up, crawling, walking, talking, clapping, ect.  Well, I still want to be apart of that.  The first time they read, add, subtract, write, think critically, research paper, scientific predictions, experiments, ect. I still want to be apart of all of these firsts rather than hearing about them.  
I know not everyone is called to homeschool their children.  I am not even sure if we are, but these are just a few of the reasons we are highly considering it for next year.  I'm glad we are doing the preschool and pre-k so they are getting help developing basic concepts like holding a pencil.  Owen's teachers (soon Amelia's) have been AWESOME.  And I already have a good feeling about Owen's pre-k teachers.  I am hoping the kids' time in preschool will make the transition into homeschooling smooth.

Still CrossFitting

Holy moly...or is it moley...We all know grammar, from punctuation to spelling, there is lots of grey area.  Well here on my blog there is anyway.  So back to the "holy moly" (I'm going with moly), it has been twenty days since my last post!  I had not intended to go that long without updating my tens of readers about all the blessings and woes of my life.  Shame on me and the month of August.

For real peeps, August has been cray (May was too)!  4 birthday parties, Vaction Bible School, dentist appointments, playdates, yard sales, Pre-K open house, well baby check ups, speech, soccer sign up, and Crossfit are just a few things we have going on around here.  I'm not complaining.  We're just busy.

Crossfit has definitely had the largest impact on my days.  I went from doing nothing in terms of exercise to working out five days a week.  Change is happening.  After six weeks of training I have lost 13.5 inches over my body.  And I haven't changed my diet...yet, maybe. And I haven't lost any weight, but the inches are gone and I can tell I am getting stronger.  So for now I am going to keep at it and TRY to keep my belly aching to a minimum.

But I need to tell you this first.  I was limping around trying to get ready to take Owen to school then head to Gracey's for Crossfit, and I was telling Chris how sore I was from yesterday's workout.  The I proceeded to say, "I hope we don't run today...or jump rope...or squats".  He chuckled and said, "what do you think you are going to do sit around and eat cookies?"


For real, that is my type of workout.  Anyway, it doesn't seem as funny when I read it, but he made me laugh and totally showed me how whiny I was being...even if that wasn't his intention.

Gracey is having little competition within the gym.  We are going strict 30 day real food diet plan.  Basically I can eat meat, veggies, nuts, I think eggs, I'm not sure about fruit, and healthy oils like coconut oil.  Yea, it's going to suck. Sorry, no complaining.  Ok, the first week will, but I'm optimistic that it will get easier just like working out did.  I'm am completely addicted to sugar! Since there is zero sugar (or sweeteners of any kind) in the 30 day challenge, I am hoping to get a hold on this addiction.

I am looking forward to the outcome.  I'm just not looking forward to the hard work...mainly because it's hard.

Anywho, I will leave you with the silly e-card that made me chuckle.  And I will try not to stay away quite so long next time.  Tootles!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Blah-blah, ramble-ramble

Well hello interwebs!  After the 7 post challenge I felt like I was all out of material.  Actually, I felt like I was out of material by day 3 maybe 4...maybe.  Hopefully, that challenge wasn't too painful and I still have a reader (hi Mom!!!). 

I still don't have anything worth writing.  Sorry. 

I have been volunteering at vacation Bible school this week.  Owen is in the preschool class while Amelia and Simon are in watchcare.  I think Amelia is just thrilled to be away from me for a few hours.  "I love church school," she said. Simon has been pretty good for them too.  At least they believe me now when I say HE CRIES! Owen has been indifferent about "church school".  The past two days I have taken him to the orange room for the last half of the day.  Today he was a bit whiny so I think I will give him a break tomorrow.  I just want him to soak up as much time as possible.  In a few short weeks he will be in pre-k.

Tomorrow I return to CrossFit.  Gracey has been out of town for the past week and left WODs for us to do.  I am just not a good self motivator in general.  When it comes to exercise I'm even worse at it.  Having the appointment and someone staring at me to make sure I'm working at it seems to be working. 

I am becoming obsessed with homeschooling.  If I'm sitting at the computer then I'm probably reading about homeschooling.  I'm about 80% sure that we will be homeschooling next year, God willing. I know that it's a year away, but I'm pretty sure I am going to need all of that time to choose a curriculum, get organized, create a schedule, begin putting it in place, and plan out the school year.  I have come across several helpful sites.  Plus, I know several seasoned homeschooling moms that I can get advice that I'm sure I will need.  I am positive that making a schedule and sticking with it is going to be the biggest obstacle for me.  Which is why I want to start preparing now and slowly integrate the change of lifestyle for the whole family.  I figure if I am even halfway successful this year then I might have so hope.  There is still that 20% we won't be homeschooling next year, but it will the table every school year for every child.

Chris is about to have 3 weeks of training.  Yuck.  The plus side is that we were given a heads up.  I'm not sure if he will be in the field, but I'm sure he will have 12+ hour days...again.  Like most things the anticipation is the worst. 

Well I better finish up and save Simon from his self-inflicted suffering because he is not being held.  I leave you with this my dear friends....because there are no words!

The picture was found by Paige Kellerman

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Yard sale, Thrift shop, and Clearance

Oh my goodness what a day!

We started with a trip around post.  Two of the four communities on post were having a yard sale so we thought we would take a look to see what was out.  The only thing we were kind of looking for was a bike trailer so we could pull Simon. We also were seeing if there were any bigger toys we would maybe want for the kids. We were surprised that more people weren't participating. One of the first places we stopped had 3 baby gates for $12.  Score!!! We really needed some to block off our kitchen.  Our bigger kids like to troll through the pantry and refrigerator. So we scooped those bad boys up!  We saw another place with an easel for $10.  I got out and took a look at it.  I decided against it because it wasn't exactly what I wanted.  Plus, if we are thinking possible Christmas gifts it would be hard to hide from the kids as we put it in the van.  We stopped some place else that was using a trailer as a rack.  I didn't think they were selling it, but I figured I would ask.  But they had a leotard in Amelia's size for $.50 and this Leap Frog letter toy for $2.  We continued driving. I completely missed the two trailers sitting at the front of someone's driveway.  Luckily Chris saw them.  We stopped took a look.  Both were in great condition.  The one we picked looked brand new for only $50!!!  I was so excited.  I think I got a pretty good deal.  All the ones I have seen posted on Craigslist were asking $65-$100.  If I paid too much please don't tell me.  At this point I would love to live in ignorance and forever think I got a great deal ;)

I remembered that the thrift store on post was open since it was the first Saturday of the month.  It was packed.  They were having a big clothing sale.  Fill a trash bag of clothes for $7.  We didn't bother looking through the clothes.  My kids are relatively set for winter with hand me downs that we have been given.  I felt no need for us to have more clothes just because they were cheap.  I did want to go inside to look an see if there was anything else we could use.  We ended up walking away with three more Christmas presents...a book, a Leap Frog writing game thing, and wooden beads that are strung.  I am hoping the beads and the Leap Frog game will help with fine motor skills.

We later went to Kmart and Target where we found TAG books on clearance (under $5).  Each year we have an "everybody gift".  Basically it is a gift that is shared by all.  And this year we figured we will wrap up the Leap Frog items for Christmas.  The things we have collected already range in age and can be passed down as kids out grow them.  Owen got an Explorer last Christmas that he likes and shares with Amelia.

We have found some great finds.  We will be pulling out what we have so far, making a list of what we have, and then hiding it.  I won't be surprised if we are almost "done".  I say "done" because I shop until December 24th.  Some of these things might be used for birthday gifts as well.

Anyway, I thought I would share our thrifty finds for the weekend.  

Friday, August 2, 2013

7 quick take - #5

I am pretty sure I say this each week BUUUUTTT...I can't believe it is Friday, already.  Not only is it Friday, but it's now August too.  I have this thing each year where I kinda wish away August.  I don't know if it's two months with 31 days back to back is just more than I can handle, or I am ready for summer to end and fall to begin.  I think it's the latter.  I love fall.  I love the cool crisp air.  The food.  The clothes.  The holiday season.  Well here in the northern NY it has not been too hot.  Most day don't every leave the 80s.  Some stay in the 70s.  And we EVEN had a couple that were in the high 60s.  So, I don't have this overwhelming urge to kick August to the curb, yet.  
Every time we say the blessing before meals Simon squawks the entire time.  From the sign of the cross to the sign of the cross he squawks.  I'm hoping one of my kids, God willing, is a priest.  Maybe it's him ;)
Tomorrow is the first weekend of yard sales on post.  There are 4 different housing communities and our community is next weekend.  So tomorrow we are hitting the pavement to see what we can find.  I am on the prowl for a bike trailer so we can pull Simon on bike rides.  I also would like to find a nice kitchen play set.  If you saw my Facebook post you saw that I found one for $2.  And I did.  It's really small.  I think it is more for an 18 month old.  It is fine and Amelia will play with it, but I would like one that is a bit more her size.  We have been trolling the thrift stores and Craigslist to see what we can find.  Christmas shopping!  We have several decent gifts that our kids will love for less than half the original cost.  And the kids will be still be happy. 
I want this! I have been veiling for over a year now.  I was given a black one and a white one.  The black is my favorite and I can't find it.  First of all this one is like a third of the price of other ones I have seen online.  And I LOVE the lace pattern of this one.  Second they will sew in a comb for an extra $4...Simon as started pulling on my veil at church...and third, free shipping!
I think I have been mentioned here and there that we are considering homeschooling Owen when he begins kindergarten.  I have been reading up a storm about what it takes from curriculum to laws to conferences.  It is a bit overwhelming.  I have a year until Owen begins kindergarten so I have time.  But with some programs you can get discounts by ordering early.  Plus, I want to have plenty of time to get organized, since we all know how organized I am.   My biggest fear is the fact that order, schedules, chores, routine, ect are not skills that I have, duh. And I know the kids will thrive if we have that in place, again duh. I really don't know where to start or how to make it happen. So,I think using something like Seton that gives you a curriculum and daily lesson plans would be a good place for me to start, if we choose to homeschool. Then maybe break off and start making my own lessons once I feel comfortable. But structure is what I lack. And I don't want to be screaming at my kids every day because they don't know what to do during the day, because I haven't established what comes next.  But I also really want my kids to have a solid foundation of doctrine, saints, prayers, Traditions, theology ect. I know I don't have it to teach them. But I can learn with them by using Catholic based home study.  We will see what is in store for our family soon enough.  Prayers are welcome :)
Gracey is out of town and left us with WODs to do on our own.  Yea, I need to get on that.  
I'm keeping it short and sweet this week.  I hope you have a stellar weekend and week to follow!
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Day 7 and I'm out!

Goodness me, like I said yesterday the 7 Day 7 Post challenge was kinda tough.  Check out the Archives to the right if you missed the posts earlier this week.  But after today, I think I will give you guys a break for a few days.  I am going to put some of my attention back into Clitherow's for a little bit and work on the birth stories for Amelia and Simon.

On to today's shenanigans!

11am Mass should not be such a challenge to get out the door.  But Chris and I always stay up a little to late or a kid or two will keep us up...*cough, Simon, cough*.  So at 10:30 Everyone still in their jammies we opted for 5:15 mass out in town.  Though I like the later time, the kids seem to behave so much better in the morning.  We have raised our exception of good behavior at church based on this post by .   The big kids are have their good days and bad days, but we can see an overall improvement.  The biggest thing is we expect them not only to be quiet but sit properly and or participate.  I know it's hard on my big kids right now since we didn't establish these expectations from the beginning, but we are proud of their progress over the past two months. So those days when they wallow around in the pew, we are often stopped by a parishioner that reassures us that our kids are well behaved. It makes me wonder if we (Chris and I) are a bigger distraction that the kids.  As the big kids have more practice and begin to set the example for any younger siblings they may have I think Mass will become easier.  Or at least I hope.  In the mean time, I think I may make the ring of cards suggested on Catholic Mom.

Today, before Mass we took a turn at the thrift shop.  We got Megablocs, 10 kids books, a bucket of play kitchen accessories, Little Tikes piano, Pampered Chef pineapple core, a mirror for Simon's car seat, Dinosaur Train board game, kids hat rack, a Weeble Wobble crank toy, an action figure, and a small toy keyboard all for $14.56.  Most of these are Christmas gifts.  Though I'm hoping Owen won't remember.  We will have to see.  I was pretty happy with their toy selection today.

Well here are some funny quotes from my kids today.  Maybe you needed to be there, but they keep me laughing.

Owen: "I want to show you my moves, Daddy."
Wearing nothing but a helmet, roller skates, and his Mass Kit that looks like a man bag,  Owen attempts a grand leap!

Amelia: "We're going to the 'whore's' house."
Talking about the fifty cent riding horse at KMart.

After 'peace be with you' at Mass quite loud.
Amelia: "We done now?"

Thanks for joining me this past week.  I hope my ramblings weren't to painful ;)

Until next time peeps!

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Well, I fulfilled the commitment at least.

Day six of the 7 Day 7 Post blogging challenge...YIKES.

Today we spent over 6 hours on our house for it to look the exact same.  I'm not sure how we did it.  It must be magic or something.  It ended with me giving up in defeat laying in the fetal position on my bed shedding a few tears. But I got myself out of bed, accepting defeat, and I'm just going to be ok with it.

I have been in a crabby mood all day, and my family has felt the brunt of it.  Sorry kids!  You too, Chris.  So, as much as I want to rant, whine, cry, and self-deprecate...I'll try in spare you.

But our day has been rather uneventful.  I don't even have a cute little anecdote (thanks Aunt Bridge for correcting me a couple years ago...totally thought it was antidote).   But here's a crappy attempt.

We have those rare couple of minutes that my kids manage to self entertain happening as I'm typing. I LOVE listening to them play.  Especially when the talk through their play.  As I type Owen is playing with some dragons and they keep closing them in the lockers saying "you are twapped!!!"

Amelia is playing with a La La Loopsy doll and rocking horse.  Owen asked if the doll pooped and gave her quick and immediate "Yep!" (punctuate that p in yep!)

Simon is crawling around crying at the slightest infraction by the older siblings.  They look at him wrong he cries.  But overall this evening is relatively peace after a day of overwhelming, self-inficted stress. I'm a pretty lucky lady to say the least.

I am looking forward to mass tomorrow and the rest of our weekend.

I know this isn't much of a post, but I have now fulfilled the 7 Day 7 Post challenge.  And to make it worth your time I leave you with this.

Love this show! Sherlock on PBS.  It's on Netflix too!

Friday, July 26, 2013

7 Quick Takes #4

Conversion Diary's 7 day 7 post challenge with Jennifer has been a little more difficult that I anticipated.  I posted briefly about my expectations which were practically nonexistent.  But I'm finding that I should probably do some more prep work before sitting at my computer to pump something out.  I feel that I end up repeating myself.  Or I end up with posts like yesterdays...bleck.  Yea, it left a bad taste in my mouth too.  I want to keep it up beat and fun around here.  (P.S. Those who have commented with encouragement thanks!)  Even though it is challenging I've enjoyed doing it. I'm excited to see what's in store through the rest of this challenge. 
CrossFit.  I have completed 10 days of training.  It kicks my butt for sure!  To prevent injuring my groin I have worked my arms so much this week!  I am looking forward to have Saturday and Sunday off.  The past 10 days hasn't made me workout obsessed...I'm not sure if that is even possible for me, but I am feeling the positive and not so positive side effects.

I haven't changed too much about my diet.  No fast food...well maybe once.  And no soda in the house.  Even though I drink diet, water is definitely better for you.  My soda intake was getting a bit out of control, so I stopped buying it for the house.  If we go out or someone offers it to me than sure.  I have been taking my prenatal vitamins again along with a pro-biotic and a B complex.   I plan on making more changes to my steps!

Anyway, the first week my body was sore to the point of crippling. This week I'm not quite as sore.  I have more energy and I'm exhausted.  A conundrum that I haven't quite figured out.  I am sleeping a little better.  And you know that kick in the face morning feeling you have EVERY morning? No just me?  Well, I am NOT a morning person and that kick in the face feeling never seems to leave until noon at the earliest.  Well since CrossFit and the vitamins that feeling leaves much quicker.  It is usually gone by 9:30.

I am a compulsive scale hopper.  If there is a scale then I am on it just to see.  Oh I went pee! Surely I lost half a pound...Yea I have a problem.  So know my body fluctuates and it being in total shock I gained 4 pound that first week.  The end of this second week I lost those 4 pounds and I am back to where I started.  With that said. Chris (and I) can see a little difference around my middle.  What do you think?  Am I just seeing things?

I have totally neglected Clitherow's.  I have some really cute bows to post.  But the chaos in my house has kept me from pulling everything out to take pictures.  Plus 3 little sets of hands wanting to grab everything or they take the opportunity to do something they know is wrong.  I am going to gather every bit of motivation I can find in my body to get things my life together.  Hopefully, I can get back on track and post those new items and get back in the virtual handmade community. 
I have about one month before Owen leaves the orange room (where he has been for a year and a half) and he will be moving on the the Pre-K off post.  I'm pretty sure I'm going to be more sad than him.  But that boy - He amazes me everyday.  The teachers taught the class a poem about rainbows, typed it up, printed in out, and sent it home.  When I saw it in his cubby I didn't think too much about it.  We get to the van and he recites the whole thing with hand movements and everything!!! Seriously!?! I am terrible at underestimating our kids' abilities.  They are capable of great things!  I know I have mentioned a few time that we are considering homeschooling (will one day write a post about our process...maybe).  But things like this makes me want to homeschool.  I totally missed the whole process of Owen learning this.  I want to be a part of the process even if it is just witnessing it happening. 
In two week I am volunteering for VBS on post.  Since I'm volunteering Owen gets to partipate and watch-care is provided for the other two.  I'm excited.  I loved volunteering as a teen.  I am helping at the Imagination Station.  Here is where the kids get to come and participate in a craft/demonstration that goes with the theme of the day.  I'm really excited about being part of it.  I have a dentist appointment the last day that I am going to try and reschedule.  I know I won't want to miss the last day after getting to know all the kids. 

An update on my purple, green thumb.  Hanging plant, dead :(. African violet, not much as changed. Tomato plant, hanging on for dear life but did produce some small red tomatoes. The plants Chris planted, seems to be thriving.

 Yep thriving!
I am not a fan of birds.  They give me the same sort of anxiety as fish. Ya know? No, just me again? Anyway...not a fan.  Well a bird made a nest on the light outside our front door.  We don't always use that door, but we have been lately.  Well the mom would swoop out every time we opened the door. Well the eggs hatched and the babies just sat there with their mouths open all the time.  I would have a little panic attack everything open our front door.
 Well the babies a few days ago swooped out with the momma bird one morning when we open the door to take Owen to school.  The poor things were not very successful at flying.  They kinda pounced along in our front yard. But I'm a little relieved they're gone.  The stress every time I opened the door was too much.  Wimp!

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!