Everything you never wanted to know about our family and various other subjects.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Yarn Along

I decided to use this pattern from Ravelry for a baby sweater but made it long enough to use in the car seat.  Johnny is my little, knitting cheerleader.  He checks out my progress every once in awhile and tells me how great I'm doing.  He says this is extra-special since it's for OUR baby.  Made it pretty tiny, since I'm fairly sure this baby is not going to break any size records. (I've only gained 9 lbs. this pregnancy and my Dr. is not real thrilled with me.)

I've been reading Leaving the Bellweathers to the kids at lunch every day.  Very funny book about a zany family and their devoted butler.  Matthew and Andrew are especially enjoying this one.

Check out Ginny's blog for other great knitting and reading ideas.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The "Getting Ready for Baby" post

In between my spastic cleaning frenzies (nesting, anyone?), I have been trying to get things organized for our newest little member.  Here's a few of the things we've been working on around here...

One nearly new carseat passed on to us by Gohmann's, so we cleaned it up.  (Very thankful for this, since the carseat we had for Marianna was kind of tempermental).

Joseph put the crib up before he returned to school.

Hmm!  Pink or Blue?

Stocked up on those totally, cute, teeny-tiny newborn diapers.

Sewed a bunch of old flannel blankets into double thick burp cloths.  I don't know why, but I have a sneaking suspicion this baby is going to be one of those volatile spitters.  Haven't had one since Johnny, so I figure we're probably about due!

Therese says she can't wait to have a new baby and it doesn't even matter if it's not a girl anymore because babies are so sweet and their skin is so soft.  So I guess that means we must be about ready!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A little height extension

That's what I am calling this....

Notice that the stool is directly under the light switch.   Marianna has discovered a whole new world with this  little height extender.  Our bathroom stools are no longer confined to the bathroom.  She moves them from floor to floor in search of more light switches that must be turned on.   The other night I woke up at 4AM (yes, 4 o'clock in the very, way too early morning) to what seemed like daylight.  Marianna had decided it was morning and she was busy scraping the stool across the main floor, turning on every light switch she could find.  I whisked her back up the stairs and, in no uncertain terms, let her know that she needed to stay in  bed for at least a couple more hours.  Thankfully, we haven't had a repeat performance.  Yet!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Land Deal is Done!

Remembering our neighbor, Jim, in a special way today.  We received the paperwork informing us that we officially own the soccer field.  So glad all of the details have been ironed out.  Along the way, we discovered that we are in a special conservation district (surprise, surprise) so we had  to pay extra for a new deed to be drawn up and to take the land out of Green Acres.  We also aren't allowed to build anything on the land but at this point I'm just glad it's a done deal.  Think we'll celebrate by planting lots of trees this Spring and remembering Jim (and Robbie, too).

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Yarn Along

Today I am showing off Therese's knitting project for Ginny's Yarn Along.  We gave the book, Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf, to her for Christmas.  She loves it!  Then I managed to round up a pair of wood knitting needles and some soft, chunky yarn, so she was all set to knit her first scarf.  So far, she's doing really well...

Then, to keep her motivated, I promised to knit one of the sweaters that Annie wears in the book.  It was a super fast project, think I finished it in about two days.  Here she is wearing the sweater, working on a cross-stitch project and listening to her Suzuki piano music.  What a multi-tasker!

Monday, January 21, 2013


Since today's high is supposed to be -8, I thought I'd post pictures from last week when the snow was melting off the roof of the house...

Marching through what's left of the snow.

They had brooms out dusting off the driveway so they could use the scooters.

Even got the screaming Nonny out for a few minutes in her FAVORITE
snowsuit! (Click on the picture to make it bigger and see
her dress shoes which she insisted on wearing.)

Notice the pontoon in the background...ah,yes....dreaming of warmer days.

Actually took these last two pictures to show off the icy driveway.   Would
have been nice if the warmer temps would have melted some of this, but
it's pretty much an ice rink.  

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Random pictures from around our house...

These pictures probably should have gone with the previous blog post, but I'm always a little behind on things around here lately....

When it's too cold to be outside, it 's time for fort building!
Nonny requesting that I take her picture.
Hamming it a little.
Therese served her bunny breakfast at the table.
Cleaning the bowl after making muffins yesterday morning. 
Joseph with his latest tool of destruction.  They extended the saw to cut
the ice for spear holes.  16 inches of ICE, WOW!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Quick Update

So here's the family update in a quick version:

Joseph....getting anxious to head back to school,  cooking some, fishing some, fixing cars and other stuff around the house LOTS.

Tim....back at school and Grandma and Grandpa's house, survived the homschool play(barely), cleaned his car for a (dare I say it)...DATE on Tuesday night!

Stephen...starting dreaded College Writing class on Mon., survived homeschool play and must have caught acting bug, tried out for GREAT's Charlotte's Web(update on this in near future).

Clare...running on treadmill everyday (wish this motivated me more to get on that thing!...but it doesn't), jumped back in to studies and is enjoying  reading Rifles for Waite in history right now.

Matthew....played RISK with the Joe's earlier this week and is now obsessed,  helping Dan rip apart 6-wheeler (needs lots of repairs)

Andrew....also obsessed with RISK,  hoping to see the Minneapolis Guitar Quartet concert on Fri. afternoon (note to self, must plan rides for this and biology class at the same time...plus, who will be home with littles?  UGH!)

Therese...learning to knit (will show pictures in the future) and has decided it's OK if baby isn't a girl (thank you very much).

Johnny...has caught the fishing bug and loves to slide on the icy, sledding hill (that's all that's left after rain and warm weather, LOTS OF ICE)

Gabriel...still pulling sleds around the yard, although in his more daring moments he will go down the hill now.

Marianna....my snuggle bug spends 50% of the day in the recliner with me reading books to her and the other 50% begging to watch movies (she does like more than just Cars now, yeah!)

Dan....feeling better after first set of cortisone shots,  getting ready for the big Men's Retreat coming up in March, building gargantuan fish house for next year!!!

Me...thyroid meds...check....extra iron....check....a tiny bit of time on that darn treadmill everyday....check...feeling pretty excellent in week 33, despite the usual contractions....check!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Yarn Along

Joining Ginny's Yarn Along today.  I have been  knitting so much lately but haven't posted ANY of it.  So thought I would take a quick picture of what I'm working on this week.  This is a vest for Gabriel.  He likes to wear the same vest every Sunday for Mass.  It's getting so short that he can hardly squeeze into it.  I have a lot of this yarn laying around and found a pattern on Ravelry that I sort of followed (with major modifications).  Was going to get a picture of it on him, but apparently I wore out my welcome from too many previous "trying on" sessions.  He still can't wait to wear it on Sunday, so I have that going for me at least!  Hoping to finish the 2nd armhole and neck ribbing this afternoon.

I am reading 33 Days to Morning Glory to the kids every day.  Not sure who will actually make their consecration, for sure Matthew and Andrew.  Really like this book for the kids, so much easier to understand than the original form of consecration I used for the older bunch!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

We're just going to title this one...WEIRD!

This was in the bag of odds and ends from Sr. Judith.   It was a fake egg that was supposed to sit in water for 48 hours and then hatch out a duck.  I was going to keep it for Easter, but knowing me it would have been long forgotten by then.  The kids thought it was great fun,  I just think it's plain old WEIRD!

Unlike my homeschool science experiments, it DID actually work, though!  Gotta give it a few points for that at least.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Since Johnny's birthday was on Friday,  thought I'd post a few pictures from his festivities...

Two long distance phone calls!!!

The requested Frosted Brownie Pizza.

The favorite gift.

Everyone had to try out the Labyrinth game.  It has produced tournaments over the weekend.  I'm leaving it out on the counter because everyone who walks by has to play it at least once.  Matthew and Joseph are the only two to complete the maze so far.  Matthew did it fairly quickly.  Joseph spent a good 45 min. at it, he refused to give up until he could share the championship title with his younger brother.  Great gift, Grandma and Grandpa!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Just another spelling test

Yesterday, I was giving a spelling test to Matthew and Andrew.   The word was "healthiest".

So I said, "Who is the healthiest person in our family?"

While Andrew was writing the word, he said, "I think Joseph is the healthiest person in our family."

To which I responded, "He drinks pop for breakfast, I don't think that's very healthy."

Then Therese piped in and replied,  "Well, at least he doesn't skip breakfast!"

Hmm, maybe we should define "healthy", first.

Most annoying thing at our house this week...

...not the little boy, just the harmonica (or harmona, as he calls it).  
 Must find that thing when he's not looking and HIDE it!

Friday, January 11, 2013

Deer Prints

Matthew spotted three deer down by the lake.  He insisted on hiking out to find their prints, so I sent along the camera.  This is what he came up with...

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Won't you join us for Mass?

Everyone has taken their places.  Let's see... we have Fr. Johnny,  altar server Therese,  music ministry led by Andrew(he was playing Christmas music, if I remember correctly) and his sidekick Matthew (up in the balcony) on the... harmonica (seriously?).

What would Mass be without the rambunctious kid that know one wants to admit is theirs?  That would be Gabriel (in his boxers, no less), jumping around the room and proud of his ability to annoy everyone.  

This was a long Mass by their standards,  15 minutes.  Whew!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

A little facebook mischief, anyone?

Clare accidentally left her Facebook page up and these guys had a ball making all kinds of changes to her info.  By the time they were finished, she was engaged to a guy named Floyd and had become a Southern Baptist.  (Gottta love Marianna's hat stretched across that 20-something head.)

I promise this is the last Christmas post

We took our tree down on Sunday.  This was the first year I was sad to see it go (probably the first year we didn't have it fall over once or twice, either!)  Thought I'd finally get a picture of Marianna's finished stocking and then took Grandma's advice and put all ten of them together for on final shot.

There it is.  The evidence of 21 years of cross stitching toil.  Wow!  Now, just like last year, I have one more to make.  I even purchased the kit before Christmas, but it can wait because I have been on a knitting binge most recently.

Monday, January 7, 2013

A little bit of homemade Christmas

So as most of you know we're not really the handmade/homemade Christmas type of family.  If it's creative then it belongs to Dan.  This year, though, I found a neat idea that Clare used as a gift for her friend, Mary.  She printed a picture from Facebook and then cut it in squares to fit these wooden blocks that she modge podged.  Very fast, easy and inexpensive, my kind of craft!

I decided to post these pictures of our gift to Stephen, as well. He's giving them all away, so for posterity's sake, I thought I'd have this to remember them by.

 Dan made the frames for the oil paintings Stephen brought back from Haiti.

This last painting is going in Dan's office at work. It's my personal favorite.  Stephen says he'll be buying more in March when he heads back to Haiti.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Thank you, thank you, thank you

See the joy that you have brought to our little humdrum life.  This can opener is sheer joy, I tell you.  While some people in this family are still betting on that awful electric thing we've been using most recently, I , for one, have become a believer of the little beauty pictured below.  No longer must we pray that the stars will align in our favor just to open a tin can.  We now have dependability and ease, just look at the joy on that face!  We owe it all to you Grandma (at least until this one goes belly up...not saying that it will....but with our track record you just never know)!

Friday, January 4, 2013

More Fish Tails!

Check out this nice crappie!  He had a bigger one the day before, but I missed the photo op.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Another gift

Johnny received a special package in the mail yesterday.  His godparents live in MI and he had been receiving special notes from them before Christmas.  The package was a BIG surprise!

It's called bubber and it has become the latest favorite around here.  Better than playdoh, it never hardens.  It vacuums up easily and the texture just makes you want to touch it.  Very fun, even Joseph has been seen playing with it.  (I told him he should take some back to school as a stress buster!)  Thank you, Auntie Debbi and Uncle Jeff!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013