Sunday, January 13, 2008

Me and My House "archives"

From November 18, 2007:

We've had several busy weeks here. Rebecca and Marianna dressed up as angels for Halloween. Joseph was a monk, Daniel a secret agent, and Lauren a fairy (at school). David carved the pumpkin and gave out candy while I trick-or-treated with the girls and friends. Now everyone's got a big bag of candy [November 1 sale shopping by those to old to go door to door! ;)], even Mom and Dad (who got lots of donations).

Rebecca turned 3 this week! This is only the second time we've had a three-year-old without also having a baby. Becca went to "Kids' Korner" at the local park (she's old enough now) and learned about turkey vultures.

Marianna also went to a vulture program at the park. She's becoming quite a reader. Right now she's reading the 4th Laura Ingalls Wilder book, On the Banks of Plum Creek. She also volunteers to read to Rebecca.

Joe's baseball season is over. His team was 3rd (out of 8), and his skills really improved. He's also had his first group violin lesson (once a month). It's nice to have his cousin in the same group.

Daniel and Joseph have both been serving some 6:15 (A.M.!) masses lately. There is of course spiritual consolation for the early rising. The physical reward is a trip to Dunkin' Donuts after mass. :-) Daniel and I made dinner together last night. We prepared homemade pizza (3), lettuce and tomato salad, winter fruit salad, and apple crisp.

David is in the Rhapsodes drama group at school. On Mondays after rehearsal he spends the night at Grammy and Grandpop's house. It saves us a rush hour pick up, and makes for some great spoiling/bonding time for him.

Lauren is busy working on her portfolio and college applications. Today was her last day at Target, at least until January. Her college prep and high school load (some honors and AP classes) take up too much time to make a paying job worthwhile right now. Lauren is also busy with Action, a service outreach of People of Praise. On most weekends, they're helping those in need of home maintenance, repairs, etc.

Len's actually been kayaking a few times lately. It's getting colder but there's more water now than there was most of the summer. He and his job partner have started clocking in and out to get an idea of how much time they're spending at work--he says the staff enjoys teasing him when he forgets.

Len and I went to the Divine Mercy Care gala last week. It was fun to dress up for a great cause. I attended the Phases of Womanhood Conference, too. It was a wonderful, spiritual day, with Imaculee Ilibagiza as one of the main speakers (on forgiveness). Tuesday night we'll be heading to NY for Thanksgiving with Mimi, Granddad, aunts, uncles, cousins, and friends. Yay!

From November 5, 2007:

Caroline's Labor!
Tomorrow morning Lauren and I will be out the door as dawn is breaking. We're driving to Arlington to support Caroline as her labor is induced. Please pray for this sweet young woman and her baby (Angel Shae is her name).Thanks!

Saturday, October 27
Today Daniel and Joseph competed in a tae kwon do tournament. They each earned third place in forms, the only category they competed in.

Marianna and Rebecca came along and brought Christine. In addition to forms and sparring, we saw some exciting self-defense demonstrations.

Lauren took her ACT today. She thinks she did very well on the English section, but says the math and science sections were harder and time consuming. Tomorrow she and Caroline and Sarah are going with the youth group to see Bella, which is supposed to be a great secular and Catholic film (it won at the Toronto Film Festival).

David is going to a Halloween party with some O'Connell friends tonight. He's probably resurrecting last year's hobo costume. PAM: The host is a son of Heidi Brennan, one of the founders of Mothers at Home and Welcome Home magazine!!

Len is on his way home from work with cat litter and dog food. An exciting life, eh? I'm now recovered from the morning scramble, so I guess it's time to get up and get going on those Saturday chores...We're trying to decide whether or not to go to church tonight. It would mean missing David's pick up, but tomorrow is quite full: Mass (or not), kayaking, working at the library book sale, lacrosse, youth group, work at Target, baseball team party... And that's just what I remember without looking at the calendar. There's probably something else, too!

From October 23, 2007:

The First Quick Update
Well, if I don't start sometime, this blog will be empty forever! Here's a little bit about everyone: Stripes (the guinea pig) still squeaks in welcome when we walk in the room, but I think he could use more time out of the cage. If only he didn't have that unfortunate habit of chewing Daniel's handmade (by Len) desk...

Emma (the cat) would LOVE to get back outside. She used to be an indoor-outdoor cat, until she stopped coming home for many days at a time. She hangs out a neighborhood over, but is grounded for now.

Dusty (the new dog!) is a 7 month old corgi-shelty-? mix that Len, Joe, and Marianna picked out at the shelter a few weeks ago. He still needs training, but has a wonderful temperament--perky, friendly, and affectionate. He's learning to behave.

Rebecca will be 3 on November 14, so today she had "special time" with Aunt Mary Alice. They went out to eat and then to MA's house for concentrated play and cookie baking. We may have one cookie left by now, but I'm not counting on it.

Marianna went to "Explorers" at Walney Pond yesterday. She learned about beavers and walked into the woods to see a lodge. It was a glorious, sunny, windy day, and she was happy to see some brothers she had met at camp this summer.

Joseph's baseball team won tonight's playoff game. I only saw the second half (Len was there from the beginning.), but it was a great show. There is a LOT of base stealing in this age group, which can make for some excitement. Unfortunately, Joe will probably miss the final game due to a tae kwon do tournament on Saturday.

Daniel went on a retreat/campout this weekend with the boy's club from church. I hear there were 50 boys and 20 dads! Daniel said he was freezing even with underarmor, tshirt, jacket, and sleeping bag. We're all glad he came back without poison ivy, which flourishes out there despite the best efforts of the brothers.

David recently joined a newly forming Sea Scout crew. This is a division/off shoot of Boy Scouts. He's already been on a weekend sail with another crew. His group will be refurbishing a donated sailboat. David was also elected boatswain (the senior youth position, I think).

Lauren is busy with college visits and applications. Her top choices (photography major) as of now are VCU, Drexel, NYU, and Pratt. She's been working hard on creating art in various media for her portfolio. The latest piece is a pencil self portrait. I'll see if I can get her to take a picture that I can put up here.

Caroline is having a birthday party (18!) here on Thursday, so she and Lauren and I are in the midst of the expected discussions: How many pizzas? Helium or air in the balloons? What's the best way to make black on a penguin cake?

Len is of course busy at work. I'm so glad he has a business partner--otherwise I think it would harder for his mind to be home even when his body is. He recently went to Atlantic City for continuing education (surgery techniques, etc.). The classes were good, but he said the hotel atmosphere was over the top with gambling, shopping, etc.

The newest things in my life are Dusty and the blogs. I've been thinking about blogging for months now, every once in a while saying to myself, "I'd like to share this with somebody." Dusty takes some care and training, but the biggest impact is that I take him for a walk nearly every morning. MWF I walk for almost an hour with Patty. Other days it's more like half that. Patty and I both enjoy the new, 26' retractable lead--much less stopping, tripping, and waiting for every little sniffing opportunity.That's all for now!

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