Follow my family through the seasons of the year! I'm Dawn ~ wife to Bill, and mom to 4 boys. I chat about lots of things here - family, food, faith, nature, crafts, organization and home education. I hope you enjoy your visit! ❤
Happy Sunday, my friends! I hope you're enjoying your weekend ...
I just wanted to pop in quickly and share a link to this neat article which I read in the "Ideas" section of the Boston Sunday Globe. Very interesting stuff - lots of valid points. I would like to expand upon it, but my time is a bit pinched right now ... suffice it to say I think bringing "home ec" lessons back to the classroom (and the home!) is a wonderful concept.
And not just any old "home economics" class, but ... "a forward-thinking new kind of class that would give a generation of young people - not just women, but everyone - the skills to shop intelligently, cook healthily, manage money, and live well." (Ruth Graham, "Bring Back Home Ec!")
So take a looksee if you have a moment, and let me know what you think. In the meantime, have yourselves a lovely evening ... I'll see you here again sometime soon!
I hope you all had a nice weekend. I have a whole bunch of notes and pictures to share this evening, things I "jotted" down while I could ... :)
* Bought our spring-flowering bulbs at the nursery Saturday morning. Hope to get them in the ground sometime this week (but more likely next weekend).
* On Sunday I made an apple-blackberry crisp in honor of Michaelmas ...
As legend goes, when St. Michael threw the devil out of Heaven, he landed in a blackberry bush, and so, those fruits are cursed (i.e. no good for eating) after Michaelmas Day. I love to serve blackberries in some form around - but not after! - this feast.
This recipe was new, but proved to be a keeper for sure!
(Note: I used Macintosh apples, not Granny Smith as did the author.)
* Ok, another gratuitous Little Bear pic ...
Here comes trouble, indeed! ;)
* Did you hear that HRH Prince George (Kate and Will's little one) will be christened on October 23rd? What a special day that will be for the royal family - and for England as a nation. Fun to watch for the rest of us, too! (It happens to be a special day for Bill and me as well - it's our 20th wedding anniversary!)
* Our priest's homily on Sunday was so beautiful, it moved me to tears. Half of it has already leaked out of my brain, but I know the message was to A. appreciate the small things (slow down and see them) and to B. see Jesus in everyone and allow that to lead us to do good works. I'm wildly paraphrasing but nothing beats a really good homily to inspire your week. :)
* So apparently it was National Coffee Day yesterday, and how on earth did I not know this? Well, I have marked it down in my calendar for next year. (And yes I do have a 2014 calendar already!)
* In each of the houses we've lived (there have been four), I gather together a mini "acorn family" made up of acorns found in the yard. I keep them on the nature table, sometimes on display, sometimes tucked in a treasure jar. Well now we have our new little family for this house - complete with one extra acorn this time!
* One last thing: Don't forget Rabbit-Rabbit tomorrow!
Enjoy your evening, my friends ... see you all again sometime soon!
We woke to the news that there is a manhunt underway in the Boston area. Overnight, the two marathon bombing suspects were found - after they shot and killed an MIT police officer, carjacked someone (who was thankfully released unharmed) and then engaged area police in a gunfight which left one suspect dead. The other suspect is on the loose (apparently with weapons and bombing materials in his possession) and the entire city of Boston is shut down today - as well as several neighboring towns. People have been told to stay indoors and lock their doors. Public transportation is shut down and many colleges have been closed for the day, urging their students to stay inside.
It's just unreal ... I fear for what is unfolding in our community. I am praying for the MIT officer who lost his life as well as our Boston community, and hoping this resolves quickly, with no further loss of life.
My friends, please keep Boston in your prayers today ... and wherever you are, be safe and well.
The Boston skyline, viewed from a north shore beach.
Waking with a heavy heart this morning, realizing there are so many layers to this tragedy ...
The tragedy of those killed, like the 8 year old boy who was waiting at the finish line for his dad, a marathon runner. (God bless him and keep him.) His mother and sister were also seriously injured. How does this family go on?
And the tragedy of the 140+ injured, some critically, by the blasts - like the two brothers, both laid-off roofers who were there to cheer on a friend. They each lost a leg.
As well as the tragedy of all who were there at the scene and will be forever impacted by the horror they witnessed on what was supposed to be a proud and historic day.
And then of course, there's the Marathon itself which will forever be tainted by this tragedy.
There are so many levels of grief it seems impossible to grasp ... I guess all we can do is lend our support in whatever way we can.
And so please join me in praying for all those affected by the tragedy, and for the beautiful city of Boston. In the midst of all this, I watch in pride and awe at how the community is responding ... local and worldwide ... coming together in strength and support.
Dear friends, thank you for your concern. We are all safe and sound here, although shocked and deeply saddened by the tragedy unfolding in Boston. Bill was actually not at work today (we toured a campus with Bookworm) and we learned of the situation shortly after returning home. It all still seems unreal.
We are saying our prayers for all those injured by the explosions today ... and thank you all for your prayers for our community.
A friend of mine shared this on Facebook and I wanted to pass it along to my readers:
What a wonderful and meaningful project. A perfect craft for the Winter Solstice tomorrow ~ creating snowflakes for the Sandy Hook children. Earlybird does not know about the tragedy, but he certainly knows what it means to make something special for someone who needs it. :)
Blessings to you all on this last day of Autumn ...
"Be kinder than necessary, for everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle."
~ J.M. Barrie
Anger only fuels more anger - while Kindness breeds tolerance and respect. Everyone is so quick to judge and feel slighted these days, but maybe if we all showed a little more compassion - even in the smallest, most (seemingly) insignificant moments - there would eventually be less conflict in the world.
When tragedy rocks us, we look for the big answers, but maybe we need to start small?
World peace is a noble ambition, but the power of peace is within each of us. If we can find it within ourselves, why not share it and spread it around?
S - turkey meatloaf, mashed potatoes, green beans, corn muffins, cranberry sauce
Dear Baby ...
You are a very active baby, my little one! I'm feeling lots of movement every day - little pops and twirls. Daddy and I were watching a documentary on The Beatles and you seemed particularly rambunctious! So much so that Daddy could feel you from the outside!
Mama has some labwork this week and we're praying everything is OK.
The Winter Solstice
"Animals of Christmas" continued - donkeys!
Excited About ~ Working On:
Watching Christmas specials with the kids, when it gets dark in the mid-afternoons. I love it when the house is lit only by Christmas lights.
Beginning my Winter Journal ... brainstorming homey, cozy thoughts for January and February. :)
Choosing/organizing a new 2013 calendar.
Making time for a Christmas "Tuesday Tea" this week, whether it's Tuesday or not.
My heart is so heavy this morning, so full of sorrow over the tragedy in Sandy Hook. Praying for those dear little souls, such beautiful children ... I can think no further on it, nothing makes sense and it's all too terrible to process. Just feeling very protective of my own children and praying for all those involved, especially the families of those lost.
Well my friends, I hope your week's going well ... thanks so much for stopping by today. I know we're all busy, especially as we enter this last week before Christmas, so posting will be slow for me ... but please know I am always thinking of you all and keeping you in my prayers.
I am loving Thomas's Cranberry Swirl toasting bread! I buy this every year ... and it's so delicious with a little butter. Tastes just like Christmas breakfast to me!
Can't wait to meet my brother's new cat, Martini - he adopted her over the weekend.
So happy to learn Princess Kate is pregnant! Many blessings to the royal couple and prayers all goes smoothly. (And prayers for Kate's sickness relief!)
Doing some serious thinking about how (dis)organized I am. SO many things have fallen through the cracks lately - been forgotten or messed up - I can't even tell you. It's shameful. And when we have a few busy days in a row - as I had this past weekend (all-day mime performances on Saturday, a family party on Sunday, jury duty on Monday) I feel, and fall, so behind. I don't have any answers yet, just know I have to step up, get focused and get a better handle on things.
Thinking about my jury duty experience yesterday ... I was assigned a low number, so, after a brief "once over" by the judge, I was the third juror placed in the box. However, one of the attorneys (my guess is the defense) sent me back to the pool. It was an ugly case, too - the defendant was accused of domestic assault & battery. I felt lucky that, along with the other excused jurors, I was free to go at lunchtime, but I truly felt lucky on a few different levels. The things some families have to go through ... the lives some people are leading ... makes me all the more grateful for the stability and blessings I have in my life.
Sunday is National Pastry Day and I have such fond memories of my dad buying pastries on Sunday mornings after church. My favorites were the lemon danish (and as I recently revelaled these have been a consistent craving through all my pregnancies). I would love to learn how to make pastries someday, but for this Sunday I'll pick up some yummies at our favorite local bakery. :)
Very sad to learn Everyday Food magazine will be going out of print next year. :( This has been my favorite food magazine for years - in fact, I have every issue!
Well my friends, I hope your week's going well ... thanks so much for stopping by today. Have yourselves a Happy Tuesday, and be sure to tune in tomorrow ... I have a little giveaway planned! :)
So I'm wondering if I should rush out and buy a box so my kids can at least try this longtime lunch-box treat. (If there are any left on the shelves - apparently they're disappearing fast!) I myself was never partial to Twinkies ... but I was rather fond of those swirly-topped cupcakes ... on occasion. ;)
There is hope it seems, that another company might pick up the trademark (and hopefully the recipe) and continue with the Hostess tradition. But will they still seem the same? Of course, in the event this doesn't happen, there is always the homemade alternative!
Will you miss Twinkies, dear readers? I may not have liked them much, but I'll miss them on principle, I think. Another "slice of Americana" gone by the wayside.
Allrighty, time to wrap up. I think I'll file this one under "Current Events" and "Needs More Coffee to Make Sense." :)
Good morning, my friends! I hope you all had a nice weekend. It's a glorious morning here in my corner of the world - quite sunny, and relatively cool for this time of year. A great day for opening up the house and letting in all that lovely fresh air ...
So, Mondays used to be reserved for Masterpiece chat* ... but today I'd like to start a conversation about money. Each week I'll pose a different question/topic of discussion and we'll see what we can make of it.
But for today I'd like to follow up on this post, and ask you all this:
How much do you spend on groceries each week, and how many mouths (human or otherwise) do you feed? If you're not comfortable revealing a dollar amount, would you say you spend more than you'd like?
Still, it's one area of our family budget where I can make a difference, so I'm constantly trying to do my best. When I'm rushed and disorganized, I end up spending way more than I mean to. But when I find time to make up a dinner plan and a thoughtful grocery list and check the flyers and clip the coupons - I spend a much more managable amount.
So I'd love to hear your thoughts on this subject. :) And to "sweeten the deal" I'm going to offer a giveaway this morning ... my copy of Playful Learning, which is a terrific book, but a little young for my boys these days ... so on Wednesday morning I'll draw a name from the comments and announce a winner! (Please let me know if you're not interested in the book, and I'll keep you out of the giveaway.)
And if you have suggestions for future "money" posts, please leave those, too!
Well, it's a bright and beautiful morning here in Massachusetts ... Irene has come and gone and we're doing just fine. We never lost power and thankfully we had no flooding. But I know we were very fortunate, considering the devastation in other towns, especially up north where the flooding was quite severe. To my Vermont friends - I hope you all are OK! We're praying for you today and hoping your beautiful state recovers quickly!
Our yard is littered with tree branches (some a good size!) so the boys and I have plans to gather those branches and start a tidy bramble pile this morning. We'll fill all our feeders, too - the critters may have missed out on their daily meals yesterday, seeking shelter from the storm. We may also take a walk along the bike trail to see how the woods fared. Otherwise, we're kicking off our last week of summer vacation - I spent the weekend ordering curriculum and ironing out a specialized plan for Earlybird this fall. (I only plan through Christmas - by then I'll see where we're at and write out plans for the rest of the year.) I'm also tweaking the learning spaces - readying the materials and supplies we'll need for another year of learning at home. I have to say this is perhaps my favorite time of year! All this nice weather - hurricanes not withstanding! - and such promise for a bright and shiny new year.
Well, my friends, I hope you all have a nice Monday ... I'll be back again just as soon as I can.
It's not raining here yet, but the clouds are thickening and the air feels like soup. Hot, sticky soup. And now the hatches have been battened, the batteries are charging, and the flashlights have been found. We're feeling prepared and safe.
Thank you to everyone who has left notes to offer prayers and thoughtful concern ... and please know we're thinking of you all too. Whether you're in Irene's path, or if there's something else bearing down on your peace of mind ~ I pray you find comfort and strength.
My heart is filled with sorrow for the people of Norway this morning, especially the families who lost loved ones in yesterday's shocking and tragic attacks. I have heard from Emma, a reader from Norway, that she and her loved ones are OK, and I am so glad to hear it.
To all our Norweigan friends ~ especially Gill, a dear longtime reader ~ I am thinking of you all this morning, and praying you are safe. Please drop me a note if you are able.
Our hearts are with you today Norway, and our prayers go out for your recovery and healing.
Did you remember to turn your clocks this morning?
Earlybird did us the wonderful favor of sleeping in till 5:40 - WHICH became 6:40 once I adjusted the clocks. That might be the latest we've "slept in" in years!
I hope you all have a very pleasant Sunday. I'm still under the weather, so Mass will be my one and only venture out today. In fact, I'm sending Bill out to do the grocery shopping for me (which should be very interesting indeed). I usually shop on Saturdays of course, but Bookworm participated in the "Spark" program at MIT yesterday which tied up our day. So now I'm especially glad I worked on my dinner plans and marketing list so thoroughly last week - I have a very detailed list to give Bill before he departs for the store. Of course, I'm sending the older boys along with him for back up. ;)
Lots on my mind this morning - it's a busy week ahead - but most of all my thoughts and prayers are for the people of Japan. There's just such devastation - so many lives lost or forever impacted - it's hard to believe what we're seeing on the news is real! There's a feeling of helplessness gripping us ... What can we do? How can we help? (Even a small voice worrying, Could this ever happen to us?) All we can do is pray and hope and help - as best we can - and ask God be with all involved in this disaster.
This was all weighing on my mind as we left for Mass this morning, so I was very happy when my dad asked if I had seen Sue's blog this morning because she was sharing the news that her husband had made it home safe and sound. Such wonderful news, followed by these words that really struck me this morning:
"We must treat every day like the gift that it is. No, not just each day... each moment!"
So true, Sue - so very, very true!
Thank you all so much for stopping by this morning ... I hope you enjoy the rest of the weekend, and I will see you all again very soon.
... and for everyone affected by the devastating earthquake and tsunami that hit Japan overnight, as well as those areas still under threat. I also wanted to let my readers know that Sue in Japan (a fellow blogger and frequent commenter here) is OK.
Frightening news keeps pouring in this morning, and so our prayers continue. God be with all involved in the rescue and recovery efforts.
"God gave us our memories so that we might have roses in December." ~ J. M. Barrie
Hail, and blessed be the hour and moment at which the Son of God was born of a most pure Virgin at a stable at midnight, in Bethlehem, in the piercing cold. At that hour vouchsafe, I beseech Thee, to hear my prayers and grant my desires. Through Jesus Christ and His most Blessed Mother. Amen.