Thursday, June 29, 2006


Jack and Gus came running down the steps in some "new" hand-me-down robes given by a friend. They were so delighted with their new nightwear.
Jack: Mom! We want a collection!

Gus: (lagging behind) Yeah!

Me: A collection of what?

Jack: Robes!!

Gus: With HOODS!

Quote of the day...

The hairs on your head are far easier to count than your feelings and the movements of your heart.--St. Augustine

This makes great sense to a one minute "basket-case" pregnant woman, next minute "hear me roar" pregnant woman. Why didn't they tell me this sooner?

Summer Reading

Today was library day, so I took the kids to the local library to check out books for the summer. It's usually not very difficult for my little boys to select books; they only want books that are associated with three things: Knights (or anything that looks like a knight), wolves (or anything that looks like a wolf), or dolphins.

Me: Boys, let's look for some really good picture books

Boys: Nah. We just want books from the knight section.

Me: Well, don't you think we should try something alittle different? Something new?

Jack: Yeah, well we could get some more books on wolves. They are my favorite animal.

Me: We've had alot of books on wolves, Jack. How about another animal?

Jack: Naw, I don't like books on other animals.

Me: OK, let's go look and see what they have. (I was hoping they had some new books on these topics, but alas....the same 'ol ones.)

Jack and I sat on the floor of the non-fiction section of the children's library thumbing through all kinds of books about wolves, dogs, foxes, etc...Jack examined each one carefully. He would say, "I want this one, and this one, and this one." At one point he had at least 10 books on wolves. I had to limit the kid. I mean, how many books on one animal does one need? I saw myself reading these books all day to Jack...seeing myself nodding off. Meanwhile in the aisle next to us, Gus was rummaging through the knight/Viking/Rome section of non-fiction. Making a huge mess. He was not as easy to please as Jack. He would look at each book carefully, reject it, throw it on the ground and say, "Naw, I don't want that one (whap), or that one (whap), and I've seen this one and that one already (whap, whap). Mom, I don't want any of these." and would non-chalantly walk away from the piles on the floor. "Hey Gus!" I forcefully whispered, " You need to put all these books back!" Gus responded, " I don't know where they go!" He ended up with only two books to check out. Rebecca met us in the in the aisle with an armload of chapter books. She dutifully signed up for the teen summer reading program all on her own (God bless her) and headed out the door eagerly wanting to get home to start her reading. Nick was not at the library at all. He chose to stay at a friend's house and go interest in reading whatsoever!

Four different kids with four varying tastes in reading. Either way, we are ready to start the reading regime. Thank the Good Lord for the public library. Free books, free knowledge, imagination, and fun. Let summer begin!!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Life consumes...God waits...

I have been woefully pathetic in posting of late mostly because of our recent travels and the inevitable mountain of events that consume my time at the end of the school year/faith development year. Tonight I have been working on a talk that I will present to Youth Workers from our Diocese tomorrow, so I leave you all with pictures of what's been going on at four crying out loud for the past few weeks:

The kids, Chris and I at the matching t-shirts,no less. It was very easy to find my kids in a crowd considering the neon green and orange shirts we wore. It was also easy for the tourists to avoid us since we looked like traffic signs. HA!

A picture of part of the Alamo battle that continued at grandma's house. Gus purchased an Alamo set, complete with 101 pieces including cannons, its very own Alamo, Santa Annas army and a few Texans. Hours of boy joy.

This nice man was offering to serenade our table at a famous San Antonio River Walk Restaurant called Casa Rio. He informed us that one song would cost $10.00 to which we responded, "No gracias, lo siento." Instead we enjoyed the songs he and his band sang to other tables willing to pay the steep price.

The boys a bit punch drunk at the restaurant after drinking WAY too much Root Beer. When the waitress asked the boys if they wanted a refill, Gus responded with a rowdy, "I want some more BEER!"

Members of my family at another great Texas institution: Kruetz Barbeque in Lockhart, Texas. Look at my preggie belly after eating some massively yummy brisket! I think this baby must be a boy because he really responded to the onions, beef and Big Red soda!

A good quote

As I was preparing my talk on how to start a junior high youth ministry program, I came across this lovely quote from Saint Francis:

Start by doing what is necessary, then do what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.

A fantastic quote for those desiring to start a youth group at their parish. It's a baby step by baby step process. Start with the necessities and build one brick at a time with lots of prayer, patience, and perseverance.

Home Sweet Home

We are back from our travels.

I'm tired.

I've got to get the bags unpacked, the laundry done.

There's no food in this house.

The car is a mess.

My church work has piled up and I'm behind.



It was all worth it:)

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Republic of Texas...

We promised the boys that we would take them to see the Alamo on our trip to San Antonio. They were so excited to see the actual spot where the 200 brave Texans battled Santa Anna's huge army of 6000 and held them back for 12 long days. Their only point of reference was the old ALAMO movie made back in the 60's starring John Wayne. They've watched this movie numerous times..totally riveted..despite the fact that it is a very long movie.

On the car ride over:

Gus: Are we going to see lots of blood?

Chris: No Gus. They've cleaned it all up.

Jack: I want to see all the dead bodies.

Chris: Nope. Those are all buried and gone.

Jack and Gus seemed disappointed. I asked Chris to explain to the boys that what they were about to see would be a very small part of the original Alamo. I knew they were expecting to see a huge fort in the middle of a desert, when in actuality, the city of San Antonio surrounds the mission and makes it look, well, rather small in comparison to the modern day sky scrapers and hotels. But surprisingly, the boys didn't seem to notice, they did, in fact become enamored with a huge diorama of the original fort complete with miniature soldiers, horses, cannons and guns. Oh, I tell you, it was boy heaven indeed! They must have studied the diorama for 10 minutes asking questions about Jim Bowie, bowie knives and the other heroes who died in the siege.

Afterwards we visited the gift shop and Gus eyed a pretty cool box of plastic Alamo figurines complete with its very own Alamo...a box of 101 pieces. The boys decided to use their allowance and buy the set. Not only did the visit to the Alamo make a big impression, they continued their own battle at grandma house using their new Alamo set....only in their version of the battle...

the TEXANS won.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

The secret weapon...

On Saturday, all six of us packed the car and headed for Texas to see my family. We do this drive usually around two times a year. Car travel that involves at least 26 hours of driving can be daunting with four crying out loud, but my kids really love to travel this way. Who could blame them? They each bring a small bag of toys/books for individual entertainment; Chris hooks up a make-shift VCR for movie watching; and of course we have the ever-popular video game hook-up in case someone feels the need to shoot something.

But intermittently there will be some fighting that goes on with such adventures and this trip was no exception.

At one point the younger two were fighting about the video game machine and whose turn it was. Gus screamed, Jacked kicked him, Nick moaned that Gus and Jack were hitting the back of his chair too many times with their scuffle and Becca just wanted peace so that she could read her book. I turned in my seat to face the kids and said, "Ohhh the devil is dancing when you guys fight over games and such. Those games can turn a perfectly happy family into raving lunatics and THAT'S JUST what the devil wants!!" The kids just stared at me; Gus sobbing through his big tears. So Chris brought out the secret weapon: "OK guys, it's time to pray the Rosary!" The kids moaned, "NOOOOOO!! (All except for Jack who was excited since he had recently learned to pray the rosary in his class)" "Yeeeesss!" Chris replied, "It will calm you all down and make you think of more important things like Jesus and the Glorious mysteries!"

There was silence in the car as we prepared to pray, and the kids participated as they should...all except for Gus, who was lulled by all the words. Before we knew it, the kids were in the rhythm of the prayer and we all felt blessed by the few moments of peace that Our Lady provided. In the time we devoted to Jesus and His mom, we were rewarded in big ways: Gus fell asleep, ('s a blessing... believe me...that boy can yell!), Jack quietly resumed his game play and decided to share the video game machine with Nick, Rebecca found the peace she desired to read her book, Chris drove without distraction and I actually found some inspiration for a talk I need to present to the Diocese next week. The Rosary is a powerful prayer and one we should take advantage of more often. Give it a try on your next trip, or better yet, tonight and see what blessings await you!

Friday, June 16, 2006

A strong mom....

Danielle has 7 kids that she currently homeschools and is now preganant with her eighth baby. She is due about the same time I am and is experiencing the same sort of "issues". We can DO it Danielle!

Summertime Blues

Whoo Hooo! School is out and there is no one happier than mama!! The backpacks are hung, the swimsuits are washed, and the summer chore chart is about to be reinstated!!!! Yes, the summer chore chart is here and I am hopeful that all items on the chart will be cheerfully done with out any complaint! EVERY DAY! Before my kids are allowed to do ANYTHING in the morning whether it be T.V., going out with friends, playing etc...they must first complete everything on their chore chart. Everyday chores like: get dressed, brush your teeth and hair, clean your room, make beds, eat breakfast and help in the kitchen. --That is the morning list. The other list of only one or two day- specific chores can be done at any point during the day, but before dinner! Things like: water plants, pick up outside toys, clean out car, clean third floor and on and on.

Imagine my "surprise" when on Monday morning...the first day of the new regime...Nick protested! What a shock!!

Me: Nick, it's time to get up and start your chores.

Nick: What? Chores now? But it's summer!!!

Me: (triumphantly) Yes!!! And with summer comes summertime chores!

Nick: (whining) But I thought summer was for fun!

Me: (getting impatient) NO! Summer is NOT for fun. The only good thing about summer is that school is OUT. YOU still need to maintain a routine, and that ROUTINE includes your chores!!!

Nick moaned and reluctantly read his chore chart.

I think we're off to a good start. Don't you?

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Dinnertime philosophy

... according to a 6 year old:

Jack: Mom, guess what?

Me: What?

Jack: Everyfing in this world was created, but everything that was invented was made by man.

Me: mmmmm.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Gluttony will get you nowhere!

I seem to be hungry ALL the time!

My stomach is all scrunched up making room for baby so I tend to want food all the time. If I eat a regular portion of food, I end up with terrible heartburn and must remain standing for awhile for the food to digest. Mostly I just eat small portions of food so that I'm not miserable, but sometimes despite my efforts to subdue my eating...the heartburn comes. Today was no exception.

I was eating bites of food all day. Cheese here, cantaloupe there, a spoon of ice cream at 2:00, a slice of bread at 3:00. But around 5:00 I was starving. BIG TIME. And I was craving a BIG JUICY hamburger. I called my husband immediately and told him that the kids and I would pick him up from work and go directly to a local restaurant so that I could get my burger fix. I did not have time to cook my own burger since I had a meeting at church later in the evening. My sweet husband knew better than to cross a starving pregnant woman (he's had lots of experience) and pleasantly agreed to my desires.

We arrived at the restaurant and ordered. My hamburger arrived and it looked perfect. Beef, lettuce, tomato, onion, mayo and mustard. I took one bite and immediately felt that preliminary stuffiness. I ignored it and continued to enjoy my burger...slowly. After eating only half the hamburger, I had to put it down because I was full...too full for another bite. I looked down at my beautiful burger and realized that I still wanted it, but could not eat another bite. I was uncomfortably full and needed to stand up to stretch my belly and digest what little I had eaten. I wished I had brought along my Tums, but even those don't tend to help.

Chris: Georgie, is this going to be a big baby again?

Me: Oh yeah, I don't remember feeling this uncomfortable this early. It's a big 'un all right. (In my last two pregnancies I gave birth to a 10lb baby and a 10 1/2lb baby so I'm a bit concerned that this one could tip the scales at 11lbs)

After our dinner, I moved on to a youth meeting I had scheduled. My discomfort had subsided after an hour or so, and I focused on the meeting at hand. After a couple of hours at the church, I said my goodbyes and headed home. But guess what? I was hungry again and this time I was craving chocolate. More specifically: Stork Chocolate Reisen...the chocolate of the gods!! I could not stop thinking about it..the caramel inside, the dark chocolate outside, chewy, melt in your mouth chocolate...Before I knew it, I was in my driveway. I thought to myself, "should I ask my husband to make a run for the chocolate or should I do it?" I decided to do it, so I put the car in reverse and headed to the drug store at 9:30 to satisfy my chocolate craving.

As I arrived at the store, I saw that candy (5 boxes for $5), Gatoraide, soda and toilet paper was on sale. There were no available baskets so I had to carry my treasures by hand. You people should have seen my pregnant self!....I piled my 5 candy boxes along with my 5 Gatoraide bottles and my two rolls of toilet paper into my arms...but wait...I forgot my chocolate! I hurried to the chocolate isle and topped my tower of goodies with my one bag of chocolate. I balanced everything with great care, but realized how ridiculous I looked as I turned and saw the checkout lady staring at me. I wondered what she was thinking as she watched me gingerly carry my items to the checkout. I smiled at her and she glared back at me. Grump..Couldn't she see that this was a late night necessity for a pregnant woman like myself?

I arrived home to cheers and admiration as I showed the kids my treasures. I shared. Yes, I shared. But I did NOT share my chocolate. I ate 3 candies and the stuffiness came back. I ate one more and realized I was full again. I handed over the chocolate to my appreciative husband and felt unfulfilled. I wanted more but could eat no more. I called a friend, worked on the computer and stretched my stomach so that my discomfort would subside. It is now midnight and I'm feeling much better. And guess what? I'm hungry again......

God in Three Persons..Blessed Trinity

"The Triune nature of God is the principal mystery of the Catholic faith. With it, we come to the end of the journey of revelation which Jesus fulfilled through his Incarnation, Passion, Death and Resurrection. From the summit of the "holy mountain" which is Christ, we contemplate the first and last horizon of the universe and of history: the Love of God, the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.

"God is not solitude, but perfect communion. From God being communion derives the vocation of all humanity to form the one great family in which the various races and cultures meet one another and are reciprocally enriched (cf. Acts 17: 26)." JOHN PAUL II Solemnity of the Blessed Trinity Sunday, 15 June 2003

How are you feeling?

I've been getting more and more visually pregnant these days, and commonly get asked the above question. I regularly refer myself to a day to day pregnancy calendar that gives me an idea of what I may be feeling and how the baby is developing. Here was today's entry and pretty much gives you an idea of "How I'm feeling."

You may increasingly feel discomfort in the coming weeks - heartburn, lower back pain, shooting leg pain when your baby gets into position over your sciatic nerve, frequent trips to the bathroom, and trouble sleeping because there simply isn't a comfortable position that works. But rest assured your baby is definitely being well taken care of in there. She can hear your voice, see light and dark, and sense taste in the womb, and is developing her unique identity: over the past three weeks, the swirl of amniotic fluid has molded your baby's fingerprints and her fingers are starting to sense touch in the womb.

Yep! That sums it up all right!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Hoola Boola!

Tomorrow is my son Nick's birthday party. Nick has invited 7 or 8 friends to witness the "double digit" moment in his young life. But when was it that Nick moved from themed parties that have included: Star Wars, Army Men, Knights and Castles, dinosaurs and so on, to what he requested this year: A Luau Party.

Me: Nick, you want a Luau this year?

Nick: Yeah, that sounds great mom. Can I wear a grass skirt and coconut bra?

Me: Huh? You WANT to wear a coconut bra?

Nick: (laughing) Yeah, that would be cool!

OK. So indulgent mom here goes and gets the proper party supplies necessary to pull off a Luau party. Oh, we have totem poles, tiki torches, hula hoops, leis, and tons of food including Hawaiian Pizza! We will be playing games like: Pass the coconut, beach towel musical chairs, coconut tasting contest, hula dancing, and bowling for coconuts. (I may be "coconuts" after this party concludes!) But can I confide in you that my son is absolutely giddy about this party? He's been doing extra chores around the house, complimenting me on my beauty (ha!), thanking me over and over again for dinner. All of this for a Luau party? Man, kids surprise you sometimes.

You can be SURE I will post pictures of the event.

Some awesome kids...

From American Papist. Be sure to view their website below and see pictures of these outstanding Catholic young people.

Missionaries for a new sexual revolution bring message to Augusta: Real Love Rejects Abortion

AUGUSTA, Maine, Dissatisfied and disenchanted with the culture's glorification of abortion and no-strings-attached sex, 12 young adults have dedicated their summers to walking through the Northeast as "missionaries for a new sexual revolution."

"We will stand no longer for the culture of death advocated by those who promote casual sex and abortion," said spokesperson Jessica Newman. "Our generation needs to hear the message that real love rejects abortion."

She continued, "We are not rejecting the culture; we are going to untwist the lies thrown upon our generation and transform the culture."

Using the late Pope John Paul II's collection of revolutionary teachings known as the "Theology of the Body," the young adults from throughout the United States are sharing the good news about the true meaning of sex, along major highways and in Catholic parishes from Augusta, Maine, to Washington, D.C.

"True liberation did not come from the sexual revolution of our parents' generation," said Lacy Howard, a student at the University of Maryland. "True love must be total, faithful and fruitful, or it is not authentic. It is disheartening to see so many people buy into the lie that selfish relationships will lead to happiness and freedom. Instead, we are echoing the words of John Paul II, who said that only in a sincere gift of self can one discover himself."

Although their message is universal, the young adults, known as the Missionaries of the Eucharist, are also urging Catholics to look to the example of Jesus Christ who gives of himself in Holy Communion at every Mass.

For more information, please visit the organization's website,

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

A new website....

Check out the new and improved St. Thomas More website, my home parish where I worship and minister. Some of the channels are incomplete, but you'll get a picture of what we do and how we serve.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Soy Vey Very Teriyaki

A friend of mine had our book club over for dinner the other day and prepared salmon steaks covered in a teriyaki sauce. I'm telling you, it was the best meal I have had in months! She gave me the secret to her meal and it was definitely in the sauce!! I purchased a bottle of this "sauce of the gods" from Super Target(of all places! can find it in the specialty food isle) and simply poured it over my chicken tenders and sauted for a few minutes in my cookware. I'm telling you, everyone ate it. I prepared white rice, a green salad and strawberries as side dishes. Go out and get your own bottle and tell me what you think!!

Just a-swingin'

Sorry it has been so long since I've posted anything, but this weekend was "one of those" weekends that I dreaded mostly because it was packed with many cross conflicting activities that I knew would be cumbersome to get through. But thanks to a little help from our carpooling friends; we got through it. We are family hear us roar!!!! Oh, there were birthday parties, a band trip to Atlanta, an out of town basketball tournament, two cancelled baseball games (thank you, rain) an anniversary mass an hour away from home, a catechist pitch weekend where I needed to be present at most Sunday masses, and finally a Sunday afternoon picnic at a friends farm. Really though, I am thankful for the ability to accomplish many things and to be with my children for the things they enjoy. But to speak quite honestly and selfishly, I was mostly looking forward to going to my friends farm. It is a place to rest, put up your feet and relax. A place filled with hospitality, faith, humility and the simple things.

Maureen and David's family owns around 200 acres near our town. It is an oasis of peace...away from all the hustle and bustle of the town I live in. There are horses, goats, a large pond, paddle boats, a cozy farmhouse with a handsome porch to sip your mint julip ( southern style). She has rocking chairs, an outdoor fireplace to roast marshmallows, a trampoline for the kids, a tree house, four wonderful children and on and on. It's just a great place to be. We were gathered at her farm for two reasons: 1. To catch up with a family who had moved away last year and was back visiting and 2. To say farewell to a couple of our Diocesan seminarians who were off to Mexico to participate in a 6 week Spanish immersion experience. To celebrate these two things, Maureen and David prepared tacos, beans, and all kinds of complimentary side dishes. It was all very yummy!! We women sat on the front porch and talked, listened, laughed and even cried at some of the stories that were told yesterday. It all reminded me of my days as a young girl at my grandmother's house. Talking and eating.

After awhile, I decided to go and find my husband. He was on the other side of the house sitting on my favorite swing, under the trees, talking to some of the guys. I was glad to see a seat open next to him, and eagerly walked over and sat with him. The swing we were on was one of those two man, suspended porch swings with its own frame, that leans backward, with a high back. Very comfortable. Very relaxing. Chris and I have sat on that swing together many times. But I would be lying to you if I told you I never worried about the darn thing breaking out from under us. It is suspended after all. Now that I'm pregnant, you would think that I would have thought twice about sitting on it. But I didn't. You would think that after I heard the suspicious cracking noises coming from underneath the swing I would have gotten up, but I didn't. Instead I enjoyed my last moments on a swing that was about to swing its last swing. Yes, you guessed it. The darn thing collapsed under Chris and I. We fell a couple of feet to the ground backward and rested upright on our bottoms. HOW EMBARRASSING! Our sweet hosts ran over to help us up as well as others. I am totally fine and so is Chris...but our pride hurts a little though. I was concerned that the baby may have been hurt in the tumble, but was reassured after I felt his/her familiar movements in my tummy.

Even though we took that little spill, it was a spill amongst friends and family. I feel bad for my dear friends since they've lost a great swing that held many secrets and history. But we will always remember the day the swing decided to have its revenge! Boy I learned a good lesson! Whoops!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Parking and Preganacy

We had to go and find a birthday present for Nick this evening. I had a hard time finding a parking spot, so Jack offered this suggestion:

Jack: Mom, you can park in the handicapped parking spot.

Me: I can?

Jack: Yeah, 'cause you are pregnant and that means you are handicapped.

Me: (laughing) Oh. Gee Jack, thanks. But I don't think I qualify, although some days I think I could.