My Sunday Best, Volume 87: New Year's Eve

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Happy (almost) New Year! We're looking forward to our traditional "cocktail party" dinner, where we eat appetizers and drink sparkling apple cider, then watch a New Year's countdown and send everyone to bed early... It's amazing!

51/52: Christmas Prep

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 86: Christmas Eve-Style!

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Happy Christmas Eve!

50/52: Penitential Gingerbread Houses

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 85: Gaudete Sunday!

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Gaudete Sunday! Woohoo! Everyone wear pink! Christmas is almost here! 

Like, really REALLY almost here because next Sunday is Christmas Eve. Yikes.

8 Life Hacks for an Easy (well, easier) Christmas Season

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Let me be honest here - it's currently December 16th and our Christmas lights aren't up. There's no wreath on the door. Our Christmas tree is somewhere in our woods, waiting to be cut down on December 23rd. We've got plenty of books out, nativities, the Advent wreath, and a tiny "Advent tree" that the kids decided to decorate with construction paper and tinfoil. But the whole shebang? Not even close.

I like to streeeetch Advent as much as possible in terms of preparation, and then streeeetch the Christmas season as well. It's just my favorite. And with as many kids as we've got, I do what I can to make things as easy on me as possible. Here are some of my favorite hacks to make things a little more manageable:

49/52: Snowy Day and Baby Dolls

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 84: Snowy Day!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Hey, would you believe it? We got some snow!! So now our mud room consists of nothing but snow pants, coats, and boots... At least 4 of the kids can mostly get themselves suited up without my help! This is all the snow we have left now, though:

48/52: A Colonial Vacation

Saturday, December 9, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 83: Advent Music!

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Happy Advent!! We dug out our decorations last night and the kids are SO excited to start lighting candles! Even though they're last year's candles... We'll get new ones this week, I think.

Everyone was a little disappointed that we didn't get anything out except one print, the advent wreath, and Mary and Joseph traveling to Bethlehem. "Where are the other decorations?? The Christmas lights!!! The other nativities!!"

Seems like they forgot that we decorate slowly! Veeeery slowly. And don't finish decorating until Christmas!

47/52: Woodland Dolls and Advent-ish

Edith, Age 1

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 82: Happy Thanksgiving!

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving! We celebrated with family on Thursday and have been happily eating leftover pie since then. It's always kind of a tricky holiday to navigate since my dad died almost four years ago, but I think we've all figured out that we really need to keep things to just family so that we don't have to worry about how we grieve in front of each other...

An Age by Age Gift Guide

Saturday, November 25, 2017

I can't help it, I just love sharing my gift recommendations! Looking around at the toys that are still on our shelves after purging, I wanted to let others know what has worked for us over the years and which toys get love from a variety of ages. Almost all of these toys in the 1+/2+ etc. age range get played with by 1-year-olds aaaall the way up to adults! So when you give one of these recommendations as a gift, it's going to last a long time. Happy gifting!

46/52: Thanksgiving Prep

Friday, November 24, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 81: Gearing up for Black Friday

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Happy Sunday! Somehow it's already almost Thanksgiving... How is November almost over?

45/52: Gingko Grove

Friday, November 17, 2017

Peter, Age 3

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

You guys, Peter is amazing. He's just so funny. We have long, deep conversations about lots of important things, and I wish I could properly demonstrate the way he talks, because everything he says is hilarious. The way he cocks his head, and has to think for a long time, and squeaks and runs in place when he gets excited... I should probably take a video.

The other day we were talking about praying for the holy souls in purgatory, and he told me, "Yeah, betuz we want dem to det to Heaven. And Heaven is at Mass. It's at da top of Mass. Where da people are and dey tan't det down." We had this conversation several times and then figured out he was talking about the choir loft. Which is NOT Heaven, obviously.

He spends loooong periods of time building elaborate Lego & Duplo creations and carrying them around the house, crying when he drops them and they break to pieces and desperately trying to protect them from the pillaging baby. He really, really loves babies and soft cuddly animals, and needs LOTS of hugs. I spend much of my day with Peter wailing, "I need a HUUUUUD!!!" actually...

Peter's survey answers:

1. What is your favorite color? Ummm... Looks down at the toy he's holding. Blat, red, dreen, owange.
2. What is your favorite toy? Um, dis (the Zoobz the twins got for their birthday, but probably legos and magformers are his favorites).
3. What is your favorite fruit? Ummm, da fwuit dat we ate for bweakfast. Do you mean pear? No, da fwuit dat we ate for BWEAKFAST. We didn't eat any fruit for breakfast today. Um, LATER we did. Do you mean the fruit that Dad brought home last week? Yeah. (Okay, the Costco pre-cut melon and strawberries and everything)
4. What is your favorite television show? Ummmm... Stinty and Dirty.
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Ummm... Hmm... Da cheese dat Dad bwought home from his office.
6. What is your favorite outfit? Dis. (Striped polo shirt and cargo pants).
7. What is your favorite game? Ummm, pwobably Blokus.
8. What is your favorite snack? Ummm, pwooobably Cheez-its.
9. What is your favorite animal? Um, bunnies.
10. What is your favorite song? Um, In Heaven Da Blessed (the second verse of Immaculate Mary).
11. What is your favorite book? I haven't fidured it out yet... Is it Little Blue Truck, or... Little Blue Trut!
12. Who is your best friend? Ummm... Pwobably Bid Peter. Yeah, Peter Hayes Peter.
13. What is your favorite cereal? Ummm... Pwobably Cheewios with milt.
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? Um, play. What do you like to play? Um, kick da ball.
15. What is your favorite drink? Um... Pwobably water. Or apple cider. 
16. What is your favorite holiday? I haven't fidured it out yet.
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? Um, my teddy bear.
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Ummm, pwobably... Ummm, pwobably... Da fwuit dat Dad bwought. Pwobly da honeydew. Ya, I do.
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? Um, pwobly tup... Um, pwobably pizza. 

20. What do you want to be when you grow up? A man.

Happy Birthday, Peter! We love you!

Here are the questions if you want to try it yourself!

1. What is your favorite color? 
2. What is your favorite toy? 
3. What is your favorite fruit? 
4. What is your favorite television show? 
5. What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? 
6. What is your favorite outfit? 
7. What is your favorite game? 
8. What is your favorite snack?  
9. What is your favorite animal? 
10. What is your favorite song? 
11. What is your favorite book? 
12. Who is your best friend? 
13. What is your favorite cereal? 
14. What is your favorite thing to do outside? 
15. What is your favorite drink? 
16. What is your favorite holiday? 
17. What do you like to take to bed with you at night? 
18. What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? 
19. What do you want for dinner on your birthday? 
20. What do you want to be when you grow up?

Mary Claire and Elizabeth, Age 5

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Happy Birthday to our sweet twins!!!

My Sunday Best, Volume 80: Hair Ribbons and Praising Babies

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Fun fact: I didn't know how to properly tie a bow (so that it actually lies nicely) until... This week. I think I finally have it, though! So the girls all happily wore hair ribbons today, then complained when they slipped out because ribbon is slippery and so is their hair. You win some, you lose some.

44/52: Apples and Guns

My Sunday Best, Volume 79: Can You Say "Time Change?"

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Oh hey, we all got to "Fall Back" today - what did you do with your extra hour?


And all the parents start sobbing because now our kids are still up before the sun AND the clock reads a depressingly early hour...

43/52: Pumpkin Carving & Cute Costumes

Saturday, November 4, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 78: Sometimes You Just Let Them Eat Paper

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Happy Sunday! And Happy Feast of Christ the King! Ah yes, I didn't know either... Until suddenly there was incense at Mass and it was quite a bit longer than usual... Good reason to eat something yummy tonight!

42/52: Shoe Store & Baby Weight

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 77: JPII, We Love You!

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Happy Sunday! And even though Sunday technically takes precedence, we're still celebrating John Paul's name day. I blew it and forgot about his requested pancakes this morning, but we grabbed Popeye's for lunch (because "Pope Yes!") on the way home and will be having... .something delicious for dinner tonight?

41/52: Hickory Nuts and Fairy Meals

My Sunday Best, Volume 76: Their Sunday Best

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Happy Sunday! I'm sending kids to Mass with my mom today - I've had a headache for a few days that I thought was just brought on by sleep deprivation, but woke up with a raging headache, stomachache, fever, sore throat, and stuffy nose. Hurrah. Thankfully my mom took the kids this morning so I could sleep, and we'll see if I can rest more later...

Quick Fall Treat: Apple Cinnamon Scones

Friday, October 13, 2017

I love scones. But the scones I love might not really be classified as scones - moist, muffin-y, falling apart... Not those dry triangles you see everywhere else! We used to live near a bakery that sold the most amazing scones that were nothing like anything I'd ever had before. I would happily shell out the $3, since I just couldn't figure out how to make mine so incredible! Then a friend pointed me to this recipe for raspberry scones and I knew I could adapt that for whatever flavors I wanted. Finally, moist, muffin-y scones!

Can I even call them scones if they aren't triangular? Maybe... Maybe not? In any case, they're delicious and so simple to make. Give these a try for a quick fall treat!

40/52: Car Waving and Piggies

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 75: Rain, Rain, FINALLY!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Happy Sunday! As we were driving to Mass this morning, we passed a sign that said our town was under mandatory water conservation. They must have put it up yesterday, because it rained all night! Praise God! Our pond is lower than I've ever seen it, the neighbors' pond is completely dried up (and has been since mid-summer), and the ground is baked and rock hard. We've got more rain on the forecast this week and I'm so thankful!

39/52: Naan & Bumpity Bump

Friday, October 6, 2017

40+ Audio Books Worth Owning (For Under $4 a Pop!)

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

This post contains Amazon affiliate links, which means I earn a small commission for each purchase you make by clicking through my links at no extra cost to you.

I just got an email this morning telling me some of our favorite books are on sale via Audible! The best part? You don't need an Audible membership, and if you have a membership you actually won't *want* to spend your credits on these, because all the books are under $4! I sifted through the sale offerings to find the best ones so you don't have to waste valuable time scrolling and wondering. We listen to these on the Audible app on my phone and stream them through a bluetooth speaker (I recommend a waterproof one, because you just never know..., or we use the Kindle Fire and stream through the bluetooth speaker.

For the littlest (under 4):

Beatrix Potter Classics - I'm guessing you already own a hard copy of this book and have read them with your kids - for the little ones, I've found that familiar books keep their attention better than new ones, and this is a great deal for such a big collection!

The House at Pooh Corner - This is another one where you probably own the book (or the whole series, I hope!) - I really struggle with the voices when I'm reading Pooh aloud, so having this as an audio book is a big plus. Now We Are Six is also on sale if you have a child who would listen to poetry all day.

My Sunday Best, Volume 74: October Chill!

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Happy October!! It was so chilly when I got up this morning that I was worried about a surprise frost at first... Luckily the plants are fine, but when I got to the car, the windshield was frosted over! Not a great situation when I was already rushing to get to the early Mass... But I made it with a few minutes to spare.

38/52: Mock Gardens, Scars, and Farmer's Tans

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

My Sunday Best, Volume 73: Sun Flare and Goat Wrestling

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Well. Sunday, y'all!

37/52: Front Porch-ing

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Fall Style Roundup - Break Out of Your Skinny Jean Rut!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

It's aaaalmost officially fall! There's a chill in the air, everybody is pulling out boots and cardigans, and it's time to start thinking about what to wear this season. If you're hoping to branch out beyond your skinny jeans + tunic + riding boots uniform, maybe this will help a bit?

Click the links or shop the images in the widgets below the photos for actual products and similar ones - I earn a small affiliate commission if you make a purchase.

A cozy sweater is probably one of the first things you think of once fall hits - pair it with a soft flannel button-down, denim skirt, and riding boots. Add a skinny belt to take a little of the bulk away! You're ready for a morning coffee date with friends:

My Sunday Best, Volume 72: Pockets Full of Trash

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Happy Sunday! Our garden is still chugging along and we've had beautiful bouquets on the table all summer! It'll be a little sad when the frost hits next month and we can't have this pop of color there anymore...

36/52: Nature School

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

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