Thursday, July 29, 2010

Ok, Children's Place, I'll play!

Yesterday I took my girls shopping at Children's Place for $10 jeans and $5 graphic tees.  Because Ellie's birthday was this month I went shopping with a 15% off coupon (because the 15% off coupon that anyone could use expired the day before).  My total before coupon was $100.  I was happy with my loot of 8 pairs of jeans and four tees for $84.99.  That happiness faded quickly when I opened an email from the Children's Place this morning and found a coupon for 30% off when you spend $60 or more.  With that lovely coupon, the kids could have each had an extra pair of jeans and I would have had an extra dollar left over (Everybody wins when Mom thinks and shops like a total tight wad!).

While I'm happy that there is a better deal out there, I'm not happy that I need to go back to Children's Place to play their game (But I will!).  If you'd like to partake of their nice little offer click here.  It's only in stores and it's only good until July 31st.  I love their jeans and find them to be a steal at $7.00 a pair (That's cheaper than Target.).  The graphic tees aren't bad for $3.50 either. (Prices of jeans and tees assume that you take advantage of the 30% off deal.)

Small Successes-July 29th

Celebrating the little things in life that add up.

1. I have reached a point where I now have all the back to school supplies that are required of my girls for this September.  I have even begun to buy some back to school clothing.  Yesterday I scored jeans for my girls at The Children's place for $8.50 a pair (They're on sale for $10 and I had a 15% off coupon.).  I was thrilled to walk out of there with eight pairs of jeans and four graphic tees for $84.99. Click here to see how you can get a better deal than I got yesterday.

2. I cleaned the master bathroom shower.  We're not going to talk about the last time I did it.

3. I'm on top of the laundry.  I have a pile of things that need to be ironed, but everything else is folded and either put away or waiting to be put away.  Up until yesterday afternoon the laundry was looking like it might be threatening a hostile takeover.

4. I trimmed the unnecessary leaves off the basil, pepper and tomato plants [with the exception of the wild and crazy looking roma tomato plants].

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The Cost of Being a Cheapskate

I think I've advertised my frugalness here on more than a few occasions.  My family and friends have the burden of hearing me complain about outrageous prices or my disdain of the price games stores like to play with certain products.  Yesterday both my mother and Bryan got to hear about my displeasure with how Target is running their back to school sales this year.  For the past five years I've been used to getting my crayons, colored pencils, glue sticks, Elmer's school glue, and pencil cases at sale prices that remained the same for at least a month to six weeks.  This year Target is not playing nice and I'm not happy.

Two weeks ago I got Roseart glue sticks (2 pack) for 20 cents.  Then out of nowhere they jacked the price up to 79 cents a pack.  They did, however start selling the Elmer's glue sticks for 25 cents per two pack.  That's two less glue sticks per dollar.  When you buy glue sticks as teacher bribes to help out your child's classroom teacher, you want to get as many glue sticks as you can per dollar.

Then there's the issue of the pencil boxes.  Two weeks ago I picked up my nice little made in the USA Sterlite pencil case for Ellie at Target for 50 cents.  This price is typical of back to school sales of the past. On Sunday, my local Target still had the boxes for the same price, but they didn't have the color assortment I wanted.  Yesterday when I was at another Target I found the colors I wanted but not the price.  They had jacked the pencil boxes up to 79 cents (High way robbery if you ask me!).  Target, knowing that I needed these little boxes for various household storage needs knew I had no choice.  Capitulate to the absurd price or go home empty handed.  I begrudgingly paid an extra 29 cents per pencil box (I brought three in case you were wondering.).

I may have been beaten by Target's game, but I wasn't above griping about it to my mom and husband (and now you by extension of this blog post).  Bryan just sighs and hopes I'll stop sweating the small stuff (It's what I do.  I typically go with the flow over the big stuff.).  My mom on the other hand will happily rise to the occasion with me, or humor me at the very least.  I called her on my way home from Target to gripe about the prices of pencil boxes (I need a hobby or something, don't I?).  Given my total abhorrence of Wal-Mart, I asked my mom, who doesn't mind Wal-Mart, if she could scout out their pencil box prices.  She decided at 7:30AM to call me and tell me she was sitting in their parking lot.  Yes, so the cost of my cheapness is the loss of sleep, but I'm getting pencil boxes for 60 cents each.  Take that Target!  Oh and my mom was also able to find me a plastic index card box.  I wanted one of them for the cards I made for Madeline with the Baltimore Catechism questions that she's memorizing.

If you're not a cheapskate and you're considering becoming one, be forewarned that it can be a lot of work sometimes.  

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Life Lesson for the Day #3

Cheap plastic containers filled with beads made in China are not meant to be shaken violently in an attempt to sift through them to find all the "good beads."  This is a task that also should not be done in the dining room unless, of course, you like crawling around on the floor picking up tiny beads.

For those of you who may be wondering, this was not something that was done by either of the girls.  This genius idea of shaking the flimsy tub of beads was all mine. Sigh.  Someday I'll have enough patience, until that day I'm fairly certain God will keep sending me little reminders of why I should be patient.  Had I been content to just pick through the beads I could have saved myself the trouble of finding and picking them up off the dining room floor.

Monday, July 26, 2010

I'm Very Versatile

Thanks to Joy and Cass, I now have show tunes stuck in my head.  In particular, a little song that goes "Let me entertain you, let me make you smile, let me do a few tricks, some old and then some new tricks I'm very versatile."  Ah yes, toss out a word and chances are if it grabs me just right I'll be stuck singing a song that has that word in the lyric for days.  Thanks, ladies.  And thank you for tapping me for the most austere blogging award of (Drumroll, please.) The Versatile Blogger.  Yes, not only can I function as your standard run of the mill mom blogger, I can also function in many other ways.  Sarcastic, complaining, funny, crafty, bargain hunting, religious, bad photography, uninspired food and totally random thoughts that probably should have been published can all be found right here on my little piece of blogging real estate.  Oh, and don't forget the occasional self-deprecating posts, too. (Added only because I really have a thing for the word self-deprecating and no song to associate with it.  Sad, isn't it?).

The highly revered and coveted Versatile Blogger award is not without it's attached strings.  In order to claim and hold on to this distinction, I am obliged to follow the rules outlined below.

The rules for this blog award are:

1. Thank the blogger who gave it to you; (My eternal gratitude can be found in the first paragraph of this post for those of you who are sticklers for following the rules.)
2. List 7 things that people may not know about you;
3. Pass the love to 15 deserving bloggers (I'm going to bend the rules a little and pick a smaller number--I'm such a rebel!)
4. and let them know that you gave them an award.

7 Things You May Not Know About Me
1. Growing up my sandwich of choice was a pepperoni sandwich. For those of you interested in the recipe, that's a white bread sandwich with four slices of slicing pepperoni.

2. I have little to no tolerance for stupidity.  While watching an episode of the new series Chasing Mummies on History Channel, I was amazed by a statement made by a man on Zahi Hawass's team in reference to Dr. Hawass: "He can't have anything stupid around him." That statement along with the "No Stupiding" sign seen in the Pearls Before Swine comic strip sum up my feelings on stupidity.

3. My massive sweet tooth has merited me a cavity in almost every one of my molars.

4.  I prance, skip, dance and leap around the house. (My anti-stupidity referenced in number 2 clearly does not apply to me and I'm fine with it.)

5. I played the flute (well, I might add) for many years.  I am in the process of slowly relearning how to play after operating under the assumption that it was the flute and not me that was having technical difficulties for several years.

6. I sing.  When I was in school I frequently sang solos for school concerts and events.  I was active in my high school's chorus as well.  Sometime in the future I hope to sing in an organized group again.

7. I find the movie Up to be the most depressing movie I've ever seen.  I simply cannot make it through the movie without balling my eyes out.

I'm passing the award on to the following bloggers who amuse and inspire me:
The Cookie Jar
Catholic Christian Homeschooling
Rosetta Stone
A Rosy Outlook On Life
Growing With My Girls

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Book Review: Many are Called

I just devoured Scott Hahn's Many Are Called: Rediscovering the Glory of the Priesthood.  The book was simply one of those books that is not easily put down.  I managed to part with it for a couple of hours so I could head off to Mass last night, but after that brief separation I stayed glued to the book until the final page.  When I initially picked up this book I wasn't intending to zip through it in a single day.  In fact, prior to cracking it open I was concerned that the book may be tedious (This book is anything but tedious.) or worse boring.  Really, I wondered, what could be said about the priesthood in 149 pages that I haven't read somewhere else?  Turns out there was plenty to be said, and when the pages had run out, I was left with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the priesthood.

As you can probably tell from my mention of having consumed this book in a day, the book is compellingly written in a way that grips you to the very end.  Dr. Hahn's explanation of the biblical and historical roots of the priesthood is beautifully written and simply illuminating.  This book paints a picture of the priesthood that is nothing short of captivating.

Who might be interested in reading this book?  While I thought that I was possibly far off the mark of the target audience, I think it's safe to say that anyone who is interested in deepening their understanding and appreciation of the priesthood could certainly benefit from reading this book.  Young men who are discerning  a vocation to the priesthood should take the time to read this book that will surely inspire them.  And for those who don't understand why someone would choose to answer God's call to the priesthood, they can read this book and understand the beauty of this amazing calling.

This review was written as part of the Catholic books reviewer program from The Catholic Company.  For more information on Many Are Called, visit The Catholic Company.  As a reviewer for The Catholic Company, I was provided with a free review copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Who are these kids and why are they so weird?

From time to time my kids utter some things that force me to say "What?!"  After that, I usually have to ask my husband why they're so odd.

Two weeks ago as Bryan was saying good night to Ellie she decided to act a little goofy.  Instead of saying "Good night, Daddy." she decided to say "Good night, Uncle Daddy!"  Uncle Daddy, huh?  I immediately asked Bryan when we became the incestuous couple.  Uncle Daddy sounds like the most twisted title on the family tree.

Wednesday Madeline decided to provide me with more blogworthy material.  While talking to a friend on the phone, and trying to sound overly cool, she approaches me and asks when she's available to play with her friend because [are you ready for this?] her "planner is all unorganized right now."  Are you kidding me?  Gosh Madeline, I'm not sure if we can pencil in time with your friend between being delusional and sleeping, it's looking pretty tight.  Sometimes I wonder if this kid is for real.   I had to explain to her after the phone call with her friend that saying crazy things like that doesn't make her look cool.

Last night Madeline decided to grace us with another statement that needed to be preserved on the blog.  She had scraped her arm getting out of the pool [the wrong way] yesterday and "required" a band-aid.  I told her it wasn't necessary and wasn't going to do anything but she insisted.  About 7 hours after the panacea band-aid application she walked into the family room and announced to us that this band-aid wasn't working and she could still feel pain.  How many years has this child operated under the delusion that band-aids were pain killers?  Bryan was more than happy to let her know that band-aids serve no purpose other than to cover cuts and absorb miniscule amounts of blood.  The explanation of their function was met with an "Oh." from Madeline.  Now that she knows the truth about band-aids, I wonder if we should tell her about Santa and the Easter Bunny.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Small Successes-July 22nd

Celebrating the little things in life that add up.

1. I managed to pull Ellie's birthday party together in two days.  The invitations half of them had been sent out a couple weeks before, but I didn't really have much of a plan for the party itself.  Party planning took a backseat to VBS so I was left with a couple days to pull everything together.  Overall the party turned out really well and Ellie was happy.

2. I made the in-laws happy when I brought the kids to their house for a visit on Tuesday.  We didn't stay long because the girls and I had a burial to attend for my uncle that day, but I visited them.

3. Despite having a week where life still refuses to slow down to a relaxing pace, I have managed to keep up with the laundry pretty well.  I have some that needs to be folded and a little that needs to be washed, but the important part is that I do not have any wild and out of control piles of laundry that either need to be washed or folded.  I can deal with manageable piles.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Book Review: My Picture Missal

About a year ago I discovered the secret to keeping young children quietly entertained and well behaved at Mass.  The secret is incredibly simple: Books.  But before you start to think that any book will do, I must back up and clarify that the books should be oriented to the Mass, or God in some way in order to be appropriate.  Brining along a SpongeBob book to Mass simply won't cut it in my book.  After spending more Masses than I care to remember wrangling my young child and doing all that I could to keep her quiet and still, I discovered that St. Joseph Picture Books seemed to be part of the secret to keeping little ones happy and quiet.

My Picture Missal by Fr. Lovasik is a lovely (and inexpensive) book that even very small children can follow and understand during Mass.  I originally brought this book to snuff out the jealousy my younger child had over her big sister's Missal.  While it has seldom been used to follow the Mass by my younger child, she has happily flipped through the book during Mass trying to match the pictures to what she observes during Mass.  Occasionally she will pull this book out in the middle of the week and want to discuss a particular aspect of the Mass, so the book has also been a great conversation starter for teaching my child about the Mass.

If you're looking to use this particular book as a Missal for a young child, I think you will be pleased with it.  The book follows the Novus Ordo Mass and has all the responses included in the Missal.  On the occasions where my older daughter has forgotten her Missal or Magnifikid, this little Missal has nicely filled the void.  I particularly like how this book offers explanations of certain portions of the Mass in kid friendly terms.

Just recently I was talking to a friend who teaches in a Catholic school and she was telling me that this particular Missal is the one she gives to her students.  She's of the opinion that it's the best one out there for young children.

A Beautiful Giveaway...

Cam, who blogs over at A Woman's Place, is offering a beautiful rosary bracelet giveaway in honor of her beautiful new daughter's birth.  Follow the link to check out her lovely creation.  She makes some lovely jewelry and rosaries, too.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Book Review: Catholic Tales for Boys & Girls

Over the past few weeks my children and I have been enjoying a great little book entitled Catholic Tales for Boys & Girls.  The book is a collection of stories about children that teach children a deeper understanding and appreciation for their Catholic faith through lovely stories.  This book was originally published in 1957 under a different title.  With that being the case, it goes without saying that the stories contained in this collection of tales have a very nostalgic feel.  

I started out reading this book to my youngest daughter who is five.  She loves to hear stories like the ones contained in this book, so this book was well received by her.  Her only complaint about this book was that there weren't enough pictures (Each tale has one black and white illustration.).  When you're five, things like illustrations in a book can make or break the experience for you.  While she certainly would have preferred to see more pictures, she did still enjoy the book.  I suspect she liked the stories in this book because they're very similar to the Catholic Children's Treasure Box series.

My older daughter started expressing an interest in the stories contained in this book when she heard me reading one of the stories to my younger daughter.  She found the tale I had been reading to her sister to be rather interesting and she decided she wanted to take a look at the book.  She found the book to be easy to read (She's entering fourth grade in the Fall.) and she finds the stories to be rather enjoyable. 

Overall, I think this book is a lovely addition to the bookshelf of any Catholic family with young children.  While the book works as a read aloud story book for younger children, I do think it works much better as a book to be read by an older child.  The book appears to be written on a fourth or fifth grade level.  

I received a complimentary review copy of this book from Sophia Institute Press in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Works for Me!

There's a neat little site that will analyze your writing and tell you who you write like.  I randomly selected several posts and among them I had a few that came back like this:

I write like
J. K. Rowling
I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Small Successes-July 15th

Celebrating the little things in life that add up.

It's been a busy week here and it's still not over.  We're in the throes of VBS week and birthday party planning for Ellie's 5th birthday.  As I sit here typing I'm reminded of all the ways in which I wasn't successful in the past week.  The house is messier than I'd care to see it, but still amid the mess there are some successes to be found.

1. Despite a yucky stomach bug that left me unable to eat much from Friday until late Monday, I managed to make it to confession (Second time in a two week period--wasn't expecting to wind up there so soon, but Madeline needed to go.  As a general rule, I go anytime she goes as a sign of support, but often I need it just as much as she does.), Mass and VBS.  I'm still amazed that I was able to pull off teaching the first day of VBS considering I went home and spent several hours hugging a vomit bucket on Sunday after I finished decorating my classroom.  Thank God for the wonderful people I had assisting me for the classroom set up and of course the several assistants I have in the classroom each day.

2. My first year of teaching VBS is turing out to be a great experience for me and the 26, yes 26, students I have in my class.  We're all having lots of fun.  I've even learned the names of some of the nice people that I see at Mass week after week.  I love how this parish feels more and more like home to me as I become more involved.  It's a great feeling.

3. Despite being sick and working through all the craziness of VBS I have actually managed to wash all of the laundry.  I even got the brown fabric paint off of Ellie's dress that she wore to VBS today.  The laundry is sitting in a mountainous heap in my living room at the moment.  Ordinarily I'd freak out about that, but I'm taking it in stride and I think that's a success, too.  I even learned an important lesson about dressing for VBS: Don't dress the kids in nice clothes (Especially things you'd have them ordinarily wear to Mass.) for VBS.  Tomorrow we're going there with play clothes.  Another laundry and VBS related success would be my ability to stay in a room for 25 minutes with 26 five and six year old children who are using fabric paints while wearing white capris and leave the room with unstained pants.  That, my friends, took some serious skill as I dodged happy children eager to show me their paint covered hands.

4. I managed to successfully execute a recipe for zucchini bread that my friend's mother gave me for my wedding using the zucchinis that Madeline's VBS teacher gave us.  I made muffins instead of a loaf of bread and it was a hit.  Even the family who grew the zucchinis liked the muffins.  They liked them so much that they gave me two more and requested more (Jokingly, I assume.).  I will happily oblige them before the week is over.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My Baby is 5!

Where did the past five years go?  Last night as I took a picture of Ellie hours before she was due to turn five years old I glanced at the photo hanging on her bedroom wall of when she was less than 10 hours old.  How did that tiny little baby turn into this bubbly little girl who is overflowing with personality?

All day yesterday Ellie kept letting me know that she was tired of being four.  To say she was eager to be five is a huge understatement.

I'm happy to watch this beautiful girl of mine grow day after day, but I often find myself feeling sad that she does indeed have to grow up.  Each year I am reminded that this baby of mine is becoming less of a baby with each passing birthday.  There's still a little bit of baby left in her, but I suspect it will likely fade away before we reach the next birthday.

While I find this day particularly bittersweet, I am able to revel in the joy that Ellie finds in this day.  Today she acquired a big girl scooter which she happily showed off to our neighbor and attempted to ride around the block.  She also got to create a Webkinz account, too.  She's been watching Madeline play on Webkinz for a while and had been anxiously awaiting the day she turns five so that she, too, could play there (The age restriction was our rule, not Webkinz's.).

I watched Ellie go from happy to have lots of birthday girl attention to embarrassed to the point of becoming angry at the overwhelming outpouring of birthday felicitations from those she encountered today.  All of her grandparents called to wish her a happy birthday or sing to her.  At VBS her favorite deacon, who is rather fond of her, sang to her while she ran away from him to hide.  She wasn't expecting it and her reaction was interesting.

I miss the baby that you used to be but I love the big girl you are becoming with each passing day.  I feel incredibly blessed to be your mommy.  Happy birthday Snoodelly-Hoppin-Pops!  I can't wait to see what this year will hold for you.
                                                                      Love, Mommy

Sunday, July 11, 2010

If you have a moment...

If you have a moment and can spare a small prayer for me can you please pray that I will be feeling well enough to teach my VBS class in the morning?  I think I must have some sort of stomach virus.  I started feeling ill on Friday night and now with only a short time before VBS begins I'm a member of the vomit club.  My two concerns right now are preventing dehydration and making sure I'm fit to teach tomorrow.

Friday, July 9, 2010

In too deep?

Sometimes when I volunteer for things I find that I'm in over my head.  I incorrectly assumed when I volunteered to teach a VBS class for our parish that I'd have 10-15 kids in my class and that I would be as easy if not easier than a regular CCD class.  I'm finding that the opposite is actually the reality.

On Sunday I'll have to head over to the parish school and transform my assigned classroom into a rainforest.  With my modest budget I needed to procure decorations and craft supplies for 5 days.  Initially I thought this would all be a piece of cake since my class size was going to be 8 or 9 kids.  Shortly after being told the size of my class, I was asked if I minded teaching all of the kids in this age group and having an assistant.  An assistant is nice to have when you're doing crafts so I agreed.  Surely I could handle 17 kids with an assistant.  The class number has now grown to 21 kids, most of them boys.  Now I'm a little concerned.  I haven't taught a class with more than 17 kids since 2000.  The jump in class size also means I need to rework several crafts to ensure I have enough to go around.

You better believe that I'll be praying that I survive this next week.  I have to admit that I'm a little nervous that I'm responsible for teaching slightly more than 1/5 of the total number of VBS campers.

Like Free Chicken?

Today is Cow Appreciation Day at Chick Fil A.  If you go there dressed like a cow you'll get a free combo meal.  If you go there wearing just something cow printed you'll get a free entree item.  Chick Fil A even put a costume starter kit online.   Since we're on week three of not eating out (With the exception of our Mc Donald's trip last week.) I'll happily don some black and white spots to eat out for free. My frugalness really knows no bounds.

I'm off to cut spots out of construction paper that I will tape to black and white clothing.  In about two hours the girls and I will be spotted (Pun not originally intended, but it works, so I'll just go with it.) at our local Chick Fil A dressed as cows.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Small Successes-July 8th

Celebrating the little things in life that add up.

1. I conquered the huge mountain of laundry that I had piling up.  Some of it still needs to be ironed and some still needs to be put away, but there is no longer a massive pile of laundry sitting in my laundry room or living room (That's where the clean clothes go to await folding.).

2. Bryan and I stained our deck this week.  That is really a huge success since the deck was put in two years ago and we're finally getting around to finishing it.  And as an added bonus, we survived doing this project in 100 degree heat (Absolutely not our most brilliant idea, but I wasn't about to dissuade Bryan from his suggestion to finally completing the deck.).

3. My lesson plans and supply gathering for the VBS class I'm teaching next week are almost finished.  I'm smoothing out a few details and I should be good to go.  I'm excited (and a little nervous) to see how this will go.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Book Review: 39 New Saints You Should Know

I just had the pleasure of reading Brian O'Neel's 39 New Saints You Should Know.  In the introduction of this book O'Neel notes that John Paul II canonized 482 saints and beatified 1,338 individuals during his papacy.  With numbers like that, I think it goes without saying that there are probably a lot of newer saints that are virtually unknown to the masses.  This book takes a look at 39 individuals who have either been canonized or beatified.  Call me a stickler if you like, but I was actually a bit surprised that 28 of the individuals featured in this books aren't canonized yet.

I thought the book was well done and nicely written.  This isn't a book where you'll sit there and think that Sainthood is the impossible dream.  Many of the saints in this book are ordinary people who simply did their best to love God and grow in holiness in simple ways that speak volumes.  The book is nothing short of inspiring.

The story of each saint is only a few pages long which is pretty typical for a book of this sort.  For each saint you'll find a short biography and the details of why this person is such a holy example for the rest of us.  At the end of each chapter is a short prayer relating in some way to the particular saint or saints featured and the lesson we can learn from their example.

It's a great book if you're interested in learning about some of the newer saints.  As with any compilation on saints, you can use this book as a jumping off point.  Find a saint that speaks to you and then see what other books are available on him or her so you can learn more.

I, for one, was surprised to learn that there were so many recent martyrs.  Not only was I surprised by that, but I also picked up a few bits of information regarding the Nazi regime that shocked me (although it really probably shouldn't have given their proclivity for inflicting torment).  With that in mind, I'm fairly certain that you'll probably learn something new if you give this book a whirl.

For more information on this most interesting read visit The Catholic Company.  This review was written as part of the Catholic books Reviewer Program for the The Catholic Company.  I was provided with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Friday, July 2, 2010

Kids Say the Darndest Things Friday

Join Us for Kids say the Darndest things

A few weeks ago Ellie was telling me all about how she was going to start taking showers like her big sister.  She happily told me that she begins taking showers that she's not going to have to use any soap, just like Madeline!  Madeline wasn't amused, but Bryan and I got a good laugh out of it.  And, Ellie got to start taking those showers she was longing to take and has come to terms with the fact that she still has to use soap.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

A nagging doubt

Have you ever read something and then found yourself trying to remember the details of a situation from years ago?  A few weeks ago I was reading Fr. Z's blog (A task that I think probably qualifies as a part time job for anyone who has the time to read everything he writes.) where he was asked by a reader about whether or not a particular baptism was licit or not.  Because Madeline was baptized by a deacon during Mass it got me wondering if Madeline's baptism was in fact licit.  I couldn't remember the specifics of her baptism aside from the fact that I held my sleeping child the entire time with the exception of when Fr. Francis hoisted her up high and walked up and down the center aisle while everyone applauded, and after Mass he had placed her on the altar where she became the first baby to fart on the altar in all his years of placing the newly baptized babies on the altar [and it was LOUD].

She was baptized during Mass nine years ago.  I recalled that the deacon did the baptism, but I recalled that Fr. Francis was certainly active in the process.  So I did what any self respecting worry wort would do.  I started to worry about the validity of her baptism (Yes, I'm that crazy.).  For over a week I meant to dig up her baptism video and see if I could put my mind at ease, but then I kept getting distracted. Today I finally got around to watching the video and can now rest easy.  Her baptism wasn't anything like the illicit one described on Fr. Z's blog.  What a relief.  I was beginning to worry that I'd look like a nut if I had to go to the parish office and explain that I thought my child was not licitly baptized.

Small Successes-July 1st


Celebrating the little things in life that add up.

1. I have survived the first week of summer vacation with both kids.  So far we've really only had one day where I wanted to rip out my hair or run away.  I think that alone is a pretty big success.  Wouldn't you agree?

2. Madeline and I went to Confession on Saturday.  After day one of summer vacation with both kids, I think it was glaringly evident that we both needed it.

3. Our trip to the beach yesterday was an unexpected success.  I actually managed to get up early and get the kids out the door before 8AM despite having slept in a little late on Monday and Tuesday.  Then I managed to score a choice parking spot next to the walkway for the beach (Ahh, the benefits of getting to the beach before 10AM.).  I got some beautiful pictures of the girls on the beach and I even managed to keep Ellie from swimming off into oblivion (The kid would let herself get washed out to sea if I didn't rein her in. She has no fear.).  My mom even went to the beach with us and helped the girls find shells and build a odd looking mound of wet drippy sand sandcastle.

Bonus: This is Bryan's success but I'm loving every bite of it.  He has done a little experimenting in the kitchen this week and has begun making pizza!  Sometimes he simply amazes me.   On Monday we made a regular cheese pizza that had a crust that tastes like the French bread they serve at Texas Roadhouse (the only thing I like about that place.) and last night he made me a pizza that is very similar to the Rainforest Cafe's Brave New World pizza (Clearly having the Rainforest Cafe BBQ sauce helps tremendously.).   This just goes to show that we really can live without eating take out all of the time.  I never thought I'd be so excited about eating at home.  Since June 18th we have prepared all of our meals at home with the exception of the McDonald's I brought for me and the girls yesterday while we were visiting the beach and my parents.  The kids were delighted to get their hands on some food from an outside source.
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