Thursday, February 28, 2008

Trip to the Zoo!

Usually when I go to the zoo, I'll team up with a friend or two and their kids, which makes for a lot of fun. Yesterday, however, I ended up going by myself with all 4 kids. The kids all did really well and even Joseph stayed awake the whole time (3 hours). He really seemed to enjoy it. In fact, I really enjoyed it. It was fun to go there with my children and focus just on them rather than chatting with my friends. We could take our time, go where we wanted, and I just had such a good time watching the kids react to everything they saw.

Our adventures included:

1) Watching the "eddiphant" pick things up with his trunk;

2) Anne getting excited looking at the monkeys playing (some resemblance there?);

3) Catherine learning how to slide down the pole on the playground all by herself;

4) Trying to figure out how the giraffes sat down;

5) Dominic being fascinated by the snake slowly slithering along a branch (yucky!);

6) Catherine telling me, "I want to be a gorilla when I grow up!";

7) Looking down and seeing Joseph's little bare foot sticking out of the sling and Catherine finding his sock on the ground;

8) Anne and Catherine pointing and hollering at the goose on the path (right in front of the zooworker), "Pssshh! I put fire on you!"

9) The kids getting scared by the sheep crowding around them at the petting zoo;

and finally

10) Dominic almost falling off the bridge (between 2 slats) into the fish pond while we were feeding the fish (Mommy barely caught him by the seat of the pants and almost had a heart attack in the process!).

Note: I just figured out how to put these pictures on and my slow-witted computer self can't to seem to move them around to where I want them and I don't have any more time to mess with it, so there you have it.

Murphy's Law for Moms, #6

No matter what neat toy you give to your crawling baby, after approximately 30 seconds, he will leave it and make his way to the videotapes, toilet paper, or trashcan.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

One Weird Child

Dominic loves to drink all the strangest things that you would never guess a 2 year old to like. First is coffee, which is something that I myself have just started to drink more regularly (mostly due to lack of sleep). He even loves it from Daddy's go-to-work cup at the end of the day and it doesn't matter if it is black. (I can't even drink black coffee yet!)

He would drink beer and wine if we let him. He likes Listerine.

The strangest of all, though, has to be soy sauce. Now, you might ask, how would a little boy have the opportunity to drink soy sauce? Well, one day, we had sticky rice with our meal and as a special treat I put a small amount of soy sauce in little bowls for the kids to dip their rice in. They loved that, of course. Next thing that happened is Dominic picked up the little bowl and drank the soy sauce straight. I waited to see his reaction and he put down the bowl and asked for more!

At least he doesn't drink the toilet water. I guess there are some limits.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

My Confession

I am not a very computer-savvy kind of girl. If you had told me 2 years ago that I would be a blogger, I would have had to ask you what a blog was. Then when you told me, I would have laughed at you. Well, here I am. It's all Dan's fault, really. One day, he just up and started a blog for our family. I thought he was crazy. What on earth would we write about?

I still remember the first blog entry I posted and how nervous I was and how long it took. At first I posted maybe once a week. I just didn't have any ideas. As I continued on, it got easier. I learned some of the blogging "etiquette" and lingo, how to link things, and then ideas for posts would start to pop into my head. Whether they stayed there long enough to make it on the blog, now that is another story!

I have come to realize the value of doing this for myself. First and foremost is a recording of the anecdotes and funny things that happen in our family that I would otherwise probably forget after a while. Second, it is good for me to do a little writing in preparation for homeschooling. Third, it is interesting to me to see the things that Dan posts (usually something to do with the current political, Catholic, or pro-life scene - he is the internet news junkie). And finally, it has been a whole new world for me to get out in the blogging world and read other Catholic blogs, esp. the Mommy ones, and get encouragement, inspiration, and a real sense of community. Not that it replaces live interaction with friends and family, but it is a good addition when it gets difficult or impractical to get out with all the little ones.

As a side note, Dan gave up blogging for Lent. When he gets back, he'll really complain that I've turned this into a Mommy blog! Maybe I'll have to find a good news story to post on here. Maybe I'll have to quit being technologically lazy and figure out how to put some pictures on this blog.

Now there's a confession for you.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Murphy's Law for Moms, #5

There is always at least one stinky diaper that needs to be changed while Mom is making dinner.

The Mastermind

In our house Catherine is the little mastermind who gets the twins to do things for her, at least most of the time. She makes up the games and the Let's Pretend This, and yes, sometimes the activities gets everyone into trouble.

Well, Catherine and Anne share a room, Catherine on the top bunk and Anne on the bottom. When they wake up from their afternoon naps, I am often in the basement at the computer. I will hear little feet coming down the stairs and then Anne's head pops around the corner. When I say hi, then Catherine comes running down the stairs because she knows it is safe.

One day I was lying down on the couch with a book and I heard the girls' door open. I pretended to be asleep and soon I heard the door close. A few seconds later, it opened again and then I heard Anne say, "Mommy not downtairs. Mommy on towch." That little Catherine just sends Anne out every day to scout the terrain and report back!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Murphy's Law for Moms, #4

No matter how engrossed the kids are in a game, puzzle, book, or movie, the instant the mom closes the bathroom door, she will be joined by an audience of little people.

A New Vegetable

The other night when my brother, the priest, came to visit, we planned a better than usual dinner. Dan and I both have the mentality that when a priest comes to visit you should break out the good food. Besides, it was Sunday, so we could feast a little!

We had a Low Country Boil. You get a huge pot of water boiling and put in Old Bay Seasoning (a lot) and lemons, and then dump in new potatoes, corn on the cob, and sausage. A few minutes before that is all done, you put in the shrimp. Yummy!

When Catherine saw the corn sitting on the counter before we did all this, she said, "Hooray! We get to have corn on the cobbage!" Then she went singing and dancing all around the house in her excitement.

We have a new vegetable in our house.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Murphy's Law for Moms, #3

The amount of energy the kids have in the morning is always the exact inverse of how much sleep the mom got the night before.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Today started out as a "Jonah Day." Those familiar with Anne of Green Gables will know that means a day when everything goes wrong and you do not handle it well.

I began the day sleep deprived again as Joseph continued his getting-up-many-times-a-night routine that he has been doing for months now. He does have a bad cold right now so it was hard to get mad at him. Poor little guy! And even though he ended up in our bed, that meant Mommy still got the short end of the whole sleep thing.

I stumbled around for a while, trying to get breakfast together, while the kids were already going a hundred miles an hour. (How do they do that?) There were mountains of laundry waiting for me in our bedroom. Need coffee now. I never used to drink coffee, not even through medical school. Now sometimes it is a necessity. (Okay, often.) I tried to read my Bible for a while, but I couldn't concentrate and it just wasn't sinking in.

Then the electrician returned my call and said he could come by late morning or early afternoon, so there went the intended trip to the grocery store. Okay. I tried to move into high gear, but it was difficult. The older kids got cranky; Joseph had been cranky all along, and I needed to get our bedroom at least somewhat straightened out, so I could move the bed to get to a phone jack that wasn't working.

So, quick, change diapers, get the kids dressed, get them to pick up their toys, hurry, hurry, snap, snap. Ooh, Mommy needs to take a shower, but when does "late morning" start. Finally got Joseph down for a nap. Twins are both getting into trouble. Put them in their rooms. Cry, cry (Them, not me, not yet anyway). Keep laundry going. Move our bed. Joseph is awake. Wants to be held constantly. Electrician calls, he's on his way. Hurry, hurry. Make lunch. Push kids along. Move, move. Let's go. I feel like I am running in circles.

The electrician came and I found out that the light fixture we thought wasn't working again was actually fine. It was the new lightbulb that was the problem. It was no good. Oops. How embarrassing! At least the phone jack was a problem, so there was something. It took a while, but he found the problem and fixed it.

Meanwhile, the kids were making a mess at the lunch table and I was still carrying Joseph, who was fussing off and on. Then, finally I got them all down for a nap and I just sat down to breathe and defuse. I finished reading my chapter in the Bible, and also read a little in a book about Divine Providence (which has been very helpful in seeing the purpose in everything, even the days like today).

Then I went down to the computer and found this, at Kate's blog, which spoke to my heart and reminded me that these kind of days are meant to bring us closer to God. It is an opportunity to join in Christ's suffering on the cross and be joyful at the same time.

Then, to top it all off, profound words from a child. The kids were up and I was in the kitchen stirring my pasta sauce, and I heard Catherine say, "You have to offer it up to Jesus." I stopped and looked at them as they were pretending to be a train on the hearth in the living room. I said, what do you mean, Catherine. And she said, "We have to remember to be good."


Monday, February 11, 2008


Prayertime at our house can be interesting. Dominic usually has a very hard time sitting still and climbs all over everything while interjecting words here and there: "Mutter of GOTT!" and "Angel of GOTT!" are favorites.

Anne tries to follow along and actually knows a lot of the prayers.

Then there is Catherine, who can say all of the prayers by herself. Some of the words don't come out quite right, like "pray for our noonas" and "weed us not into patation." And of course, all in a little sing-song voice.

Sometimes, it is hard to keep a straight face. But, oh, the prayers of little children!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

I Guess I Have To Do It Myself

Mommy sneezes.

Dominic: "God bless you, Mommy!"

Mommy: "Thank you, Dominic."

Shortly after, Dominic sneezes.


Dominic: "God bless you, Dominic!"

Dominic: "Thank you, me!"

Fat Super Tuesday and Lent

Today is quite a day. Fat Tuesday and Super Tuesday combined. One last day to pig out, eat meat, have dessert, and get overloaded on the ever-present political scene of an election year. Not that we are giving up politics for Lent! In fact, in our state, the Republican caucus is on this coming Saturday. I told Dan he should go, but we'll see. Maybe we should both go and bring all the kids. Wouldn't that be fun? That would truly be a Lenten penance. Actually, they probably wouldn't let us in.

So tonight, after a grand dinner with dessert, we'll sit and watch the Super Tuesday results. Hopefully we won't be disappointed.

Then tomorrow, Lent begins. A great time of year. A time to refocus on the spiritual life, check where we've been sliding, pare down the excess, etc. When I was a kid, the focus was all on what you were giving up. Now it is (or should be) so much more. Time to renew the quest for holiness. And boy, do we have a ways to go!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Amazing Story

Amazing story about a woman whose twins kicked loose her cervical cancer while in the womb and saved her life. And her refusal to abort her babies to give herself a better chance of survival.

Murphy's Law for Moms, #2

A freshly scrubbed kitchen floor attracts food crumbs and drink spills like a magnet.

The Snow is Gone

We got 5 inches of snow last Thursday, so Friday I decided to make the effort to get the kids outside to play in it. So after their naps, I got out the gear and made a huge pile in the living room. 4 kids means: 4 snowsuits, 4 winter coats, 4 pr mittens, 4 hats, 3 pair boots and 1 pr booties. Oh, and my winter attire as well. Luckily it was all there. I think it took me about 20-30 minutes to get everyone dressed and ready to go. Whew!

It was worth it! They had so much fun playing in the snow, even baby Joseph. We tried to make a snowman, but Mommy discovered her talents do not lie in that direction. I think every inch of snow in the backyard had a footprint in it by the time they were done.

Today however, the temperature is in the upper 60s, so it was so easy to get out! They were so happy to get out without being bundled to the max that they just ran around the yard screaming for the first 10 minutes. There was one small patch of snow left and they quickly found that and got busy throwing little clumps against the fence.

Mommy is hoping for a nice long nap today!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Disciplining a Two Year Old

Today Dominic got into trouble and had to spend some time in his room. When I went to let him out, I talked to him about why he got put into his room (he didn't do what Mommy asked him and said No!) and then paused for an apology. No response. I prompted him, "What do you say?"

And Dominic said, "Please, Mommy?"

We're working on it.

Murphy's Law for Moms, #1

Anytime a mom is in a hurry to get something done or go somewhere, the kids suddenly go into super slow speed, cooperation level zero, and all little bodies must instantly walk verry slow right in front of Mommy anywhere she goes.