Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Wild and free... and kind and responsive

I've been reading the farmhouseschoolhouse.com blog recently and her posts about nature walks (and all posts in general! and her house!) have been making me feel pretty terrible. So we went on an impromptu, quick (hour-long) hike last week. And even though it was short, and even though it was just us, it was worth it.

I also subscribe to her Charlotte Mason-classical education mixed philosophy and would love my kids to be more "fed" in terms of brain and to be outdoors a lot more. I feel incredible mommy guilt most of the time and try to NOT PAY ATTENTION TO IT and take it to prayer and all that, but I especially feel mommy guilt when I think about the amount of time they spend cooped up in an apartment, are bored while I cook or clean, have to tag along for grocery store or other errands, or even worse (gasp!) have to stay with babysitters while I take care of my spiritual life or other such important things. 

But then there are those small moments that are so incredibly beautiful and that I know are only possible with the long moments of boredom, hard work or prioritizing. Because life can't be fun 24 hours a day, or happy 24 hours a day, or entertaining 24 hours a day. It's an uphill battle with great views. And having my kids at home fits in with what I want for them: to have a strong bond and be responsive to us parents, to learn virtues like kindness in the family environment, to not be spoiled, to work at home, to do wholesome recreational activities (like reading a book, playing a game, playing an instrument) at home. And most importantly love. They have a mother and father who really, really love them and that is the most important. 

Saturday, November 04, 2017

Friday, November 03, 2017

Halloween All Saints Party

Saint-O-Lantern, some games, our costumes: Saint Faustina, Juan Diego, Our Lady of Guadalupe, Saint John Paul II

I am not particularly against Halloween, but I definitely don't think it makes any sense outside of the US. And I am in favor of saints. So I organized an All Saints party with my neighbor at a local parish. And when I say organized I mean coughed up a few ideas from showerofroses.blogspot.com and aknottedlife.com and she did all the work. And I managed to make us some costumes the night before, barely slept, got really stressed out and was incredibly exausted the next day at the party. And when I say "make costumes" I mean buying some fabric, cutting with scissors and pinning together with safety pins. 

But it was so much fun and so worth it. It was a "family environment", as my husband put it, just a few families that became friends through our church play group last year.    

Friday, October 20, 2017

10 online resources

This is not a sponsored post in any way, but I would like to share with you some online resources that have been essential to my life. I prefer physical, paper books and live, flesh and blood, person-to-person advice, but in lieu of that here are some things online I find useful. It's also the age we live in I guess, where there is so much online stuff available.

1. nieniedialogues.com
This was the first blog I ever found (while watching Oprah!) and I am still inspired by it years later. It is a mormon mommy blog and when I first found it, I read it from the very beginning so I can say I've seen every post. I love Stephanie Nielson's love of the details of homelife, family traditions and celebrations of everything. I love her tight-knit community and extended family.

2. likemotherlikedaughter.org 
I found Auntie Leila's blog through her wonderful book, The Little Oratory, and it has been invaluable. I like her pracical suggestions and use her meal-planning techniques here

3. showerofroses.blogspot.com
I am very inspired by Jessica's baking and liturgical living ideas. I am also inspired by her clean, spacious-looking house and her family prayer life. I love her book lists and recommendations.

4. abebooks.com
Ever since I discovered abebooks will group shipping costs and amazon will not, I rarely use another site for ordering books.

5. blogilates.com
Cassie Ho has free videos on this site and on youtube, but I especially love the app. It's a dollar something a month. They group four or five videos on each day by category (arms, legs, cardio, etc.) that are easy to click on. I was able to do this while pregnant with Davy because I could pick just arms, or just legs, and skip anything that involved tummy. You need ZERO equipment and they are so effective. (This pregnancy I'm just too... busy? :/)

6. supersimplelearning.com
I used this site when teaching English to kids, but now it is so useful for my kiddos. I personally love every song they make and look forward to watching new ones that come out.

7. thepioneerwoman.com/cooking_cat/all-pw-recipes
All cakes by Pioneer Woman. Occasionally other things too.

8. realsimple.com/food-recipes
Some recipes from Real Simple are wonderful and really simple, as the name implies. I especially like mud pie and Mexican chocolate cake.

9. wordonfireshow.com
I have listened to at least half of Bishop Barron's podcasts, starting from episode one, and I will be at a loss when I get through all of them and have to wait for one a week. My house has benefited because I look forward to cleaning bathrooms or washing dishes while they're sleeping if I can listen to podcast, whereas before I hated doing anything other than go online during their precious nap time.

10. daveramsey.com/everydollar/
I have yet to dedicate time to budgeting, but I found this site through a blog and I like their tips and basic concept. I hope it will help us with prospective budgeting... something we really need help with. 



What are your favorite online resources? Please share! 

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Lately

Enjoying a corndog (pretty much his favorite food) made on the open fire, courtesy of our lovely neighbor. 

His little smile kills me. Anything he does kills me, I'm like putty in his hands. Even when he screams for food, throws himself on the floor crying when I won't let him open the freezer, wakes up at four in the morning and takes two hours to get back to sleep. It's those chubby cheeks and puppy dog eyes. Absolutely kill me. 

We've been crazy busy lately. It's hard to find balance between housework and activities, your own projects/formation and feeling like you're ignoring your kids, being productive and resting, being social and being responsible. Basically, I keep on seeing that any time I decide to do something good, millions of obstacles and difficulties pop up when I actually try to do it. Perseverance, wow it's hard. But it's worth it in the end. 

I've been listening to a new podcast called the Patrick Coffin Show, other than Bishop Barron's of course. It's so... smart... something hard to say about podcasts. And I learn so much. I've been baking bread at least once a week, which always turns out different, but edible. All four of us think it's worth it. I'm using a recipe from my new cookbook Mennonite Country Style,  which I was inspired to buy after reading this post. And of course the countdown to baby number three, expected in January, is getting closer and closer. And he still remains nameless, and the to-do list before he gets here is still untouched.