Friday, April 21, 2017

Seasons of life and manna in the desert

(Picture of smoothie cups I looked everywhere for... one of those things that are cheap and easy to find in the US and difficult to find in Portugal.. argh. And a picture of my unfrosted cakes made the day before Addie's birthay party.)

I had this wonderful idea of looking at Jessica's very first posts from 2007 at her blog I say wonderful because her blog is one of those you read and feel bad about yourself and how little you do and how dirty your house is. I couldn't even read it for a while when I first found it, it was too perfect. Then it occurred to me, what was her house like when she had just two or three very small children, like me? And it was reassuring to see her bad-quality pictures and not-as-beautiful-house. I especially liked this post called, "Super Woman... or just Super Tired?". I don't feel super tired, because I sleep instead of doing things. But I feel super overwhelmed.

Sometimes I get worried that I don't know what our near future will be like. I really don't know where we will live, whether we will finally have a backyard and a kitchen that is open to the living room. I really don't know if my kids will go to homeschool, a half-day school, a hybrid school, a forest school, a Catholic school. I don't even know what I want. Then I remember that I didn't know what our life would turn into when I got pregnant for the first time. I had no idea what being a mother would change in me when Addie was a baby and where it would take our family life. God gives us what we need to know at a given moment, and not our whole future all at once. Like manna in the desert: it's good for the day but you can't save it for the next day. God gives us what we need, but we can't hang onto things and control our futures.

I also sometimes think that it's good that Addie and Davy are so small they need little or no schooling. Because I am so overwhelmed figuring out cooking/cleaning, routines and family traditions, making smoothies so Addie will eat more varied fruit, etc. that I don't have time to "teach them stuff" or to take them places. I can't imagine having to drop them off at school, sports or instruments. Which I would love to do in the future... but it would be unthinkable at this stage in life.

So I guess motherhood has seasons.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Easter up North

Happy Easter!!!
We spent Easter up North where my husband's family is from. It is a small village with about thirty houses and where our phones don't work or have internet connection. Oh penance! But it is good to disconnect.
My husband has always appreciated this little village and it has always been a place of peace for him, but now that we have kids I appreciate it more and more. It is the only place where they can roam outside with total freedom, where they can connect with nature and animals, and where there is built-in babysitting. This is because there are older cousins there and Addie is getting to an age where she would go off with them and they would take care of her. Heaven. While we were visiting with relatives at my husband's uncle's house, my husband said to me, "didn't we come in with two kids?" Addie had gone outside to play with the older cousins and his uncle had taken Davy to "see the animals". I know of no other place like that for us.
We spent a lot of time on the balcony, also. (See pic of Addie in hammock above) Davy loved the bars for practicing walking.
The last picture is of the actual Easter celebration there. They have mass, then the priest (in this case the seminarian) goes from house to house with the cross with flowers on it, saying "alleluia alleluia" and everyone takes turns kissing the cross. The whole village follows from house to house (not going in, but waiting outside!), until after the last house, when they all wait in the street and throw petals on the seminarian. He gives a little sermon about Easter and blesses everyone with holy water. (See last picture) 
Alleluia! He is risen!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Outskirts of Heaven

Lord when I die I wanna live
On the outskirts of Heaven
Where there's dirt roads for miles
Hay in the fields and fish in the river
Where there's dogwood trees and honey bees
And blue skies and green grass forever
Lord when I die, I wanna live on the outskirts of Heaven

- "Outskirts of Heaven" by Craig Campbell

A blessed Easter to you and your family...

Friday, April 14, 2017

Mini house tour

I moved Davy into Addie's room. One of my favorite things on blogs is seeing pictures of people's houses so I'll share every minute detail of their room with you. You're welcome. ;) The last picture is of their little mini prayer corner in which the intention was to say good morning and good night to Jesus, but it's not going so well. One day.
I had planned on just moving Davy when he was sleeping through the night or one year old, but my husband finally convinced me. I thought of his 90-year-old grandpa who says he has trouble sleeping at night because he's alone. He used to sleep with his brother as a child/teen and then with his wife. So I thought I'd ask Addie and leave it up to her. "Adelaide, can Davy sleep in your room?" I got not only a yes, but the most enthusiastic yes, yes, yes I've ever seen. I would say it hasn't affected his sleep for better or for worse, but WHOA BUDDY did it affect Addie. She had a hard time going to sleep a few nights and naps. But now we're getting back to normal.

And because this is a house tour, here is another section of the house I'm very happy with. Addie's godmother and some friends gave her a big binder to put her drawings in, with markers, crayons and colored pencils to go along with it. It was such a thoughtful gift.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017


Our baby girl is three and we had a fabulous party to celebrate it with. It was kind of like a college party with lots of people crammed into a little apartment. We were just missing a keg. ;)

I wish I had taken a picture of the table. There are just things you forget. I do have a picture of the simple decorations, which I think turned out great. See first picture of number three with balloons and hanging balloons. I also love the second picture of her dancing during musical numbers. We played pass the parcel, duck duck goose and musical numbers. Good party games.  

I made brie bites with filo dough, brie cheese, walnuts and honey, this easy feta dip, this chocolate dipping sauce for bananas and strawberries, this mud pie, and a blueberry cake and a carrot cake from my two favorite cookbooks.

Of course, it was soooo much easier with my mom being here, from the chopping of things to the clean up.

I love hosting parties (even though I get really stressed out before and yell at everyone...) and love being invited to parties. Hooray for summer almost being here and more parties!