So, recapping July?


Well, hello there.  It’s been a while.  One hot dry day after another and suddenly, summer break was over for us and this beauty started first grade.


We were–are–in “summer hibernation” anyway.  Too hot and humid to want to spend a ton of time outside, unless it’s neighborhood poolside! 😉  One night we had “Christmas in July” and turned on our DVD of London’s Nutcracker Ballet and the girls danced out their energy. 🙂


Back on July 2, we went to the nearby Civil War Battlefield Park for a renactment cannon fire in honor of Independence Day.  This is one of our new family traditions.  It takes longer to drive our van up the mountain and find a van-friendly parking spot than the cannon program lasts, but it’s worth the experience.


And the view.

These two lovelies handled the sound better this year. 🙂

My family came for a visit in time for Rosebud to come home from the NICU.  Unfortunately, my sister and brother-in-law and their kids had to leave the morning of her homecoming, but we had as pleasant a time with them as we could with all the hospital runs.


Posey and her buddy, Grandpa Mark

 The kids enjoyed my parents’ stay through Independence Day, and Rosebud’s Baptism .  My Dad brought a little whirligig thingamabobber that really had the kids laughing.



I’m looking forward to updating this picture very soon–that baby has grown!

I tried to get a one month picture with those ubiquitous month stickers that seem to be all the rage these days.  Of course, this was the best I could get on her actual monthaversary.


I tried again the next day, but couldn’t find the sticker!


But it’s a lovely picture of her.


Our Rosebud.

Toward the end of the month, I finished a knitting project that we affectionately call Grumpy Bunny.


Miss M asked me to make it for Rosebud while the baby was still in the hospital, and I’m glad I did, even if Rosebud takes little interest in it right now. 😉  When my kids actually request me to knit something, I’m always ready to oblige!

So passed July away.  We started back to school on August 8, homeschooling grades pre-K through 6.  Only three days in, but we’re glad to be back on routine.  There’s a lot going on this autumn for us, so I hope to keep this a little more updated. 🙂

Ending on a geeky note.



Posey Pie decided, after I bought the Star Wars band-aids, that I had a lot of boo-boos on my arm.  I think I had maybe a mosquito bite. One. If that.


Honoring the Fallen


  I know there are those who would not want to call the tragedy that struck Chattanooga a terrorist attack, and I’m already weary to the bone of all the political jargon, conspiracy theories, whatever.  I’m glad the country finally got permission to keep our flags at half-staff after nearly a week.  I moved ours down the day after the attack, only because I was too numb to recall we even had a flag out front on the actual day.


The War on Terror showed up unexpectedly on a clear Thursday morning when we were enjoying relatively low humidity, and plunged us into a world eeriely reminiscent of 9/11/01.  For us, it was a microcosm of that day.  My dad called close to 11am that day and told me that my mom had seen Amnicola Highway on the news.  There was a shooting.  I shook my head: “You’ve got to be joking.”

Later I recalled I pretty much said the same thing to my friend Susan when she came out of her dorm room in 2001 and told me that a plane had crashed into a tower in New York.


Placing his flag.

I turned on the news and kept it on (on my phone) most of the day.  My heart froze as the nightmare unfolded and so many familiar places were being named, out loud, on the news.  The hospitals locked down.  A no-fly-zone established.  Police on the ground with guns near the walking path where, at that time, there are usually bicyclists, joggers, strollers, etc. This was too surreal.

It still is too surreal.  But we wanted to do something.  We continue to pray.  Our city continues to mourn but begins to heal, and we will be stronger for it.  Today we visited the site on Amnicola Highway.  Just to the right of the photo the road stretches back to the Reserve Center.  The investigation still continues, so the joggers and strollers are not yet back on the trail.  Instead the road is lined with law enforcement vehicles, investigation vehicles, and such like.  Soon the area will return to normal.

And we will never forget.


{pretty, happy, funny, real}


My sister made this bunting. It's in our etsy store now--see sidebar for link End shameless pitch.

My sister made this bunting. It’s in our etsy store now–see sidebar for link 

Happy 4th of July belatedly! We spent the last two weeks hither and yon, which is one reason I haven’t blogged much in that time. As I mentioned yesterday, starting last Wednesday night we were hit with the Deluge that kept us in a soggy state until, well, even now, although we are blessed to see the sunshine more often of late. A tree fell over the fence at our Old Haus… the fence Haus Meister painstakingly installed himself…and the rains washed out our old next door neighbor’s fence so it fell across onto another part of the Old Haus fence…yes. Not pretty. And did I mention we want to put the Haus back on the market at the end of the month? Whew…

Anyway, more on the bright side with a mishmash of Pretty, happy, funny


Patriotic Sunshine at my parents’ house the weekend before the 4th (since it was far too wet for her to do this on the actual day).


Princess takes time out to smell the flowers.


Miss M “babysits” the babies. That’s her cousin “Pookabear” on the left and Posey Pie on the right.


Hi there, silly Pooka!

No, Pooka isn’t her real name. Her mommy called her that once and the kids ran with it. When they stayed with us in March the kids began calling her “Pookabear” as well.

I hope she doesn’t hold that against us when she’s 15.


Can you tell we love our Posey?


She will be four months old tomorrow. That amazes me.


She’s also holding her own in conversations and can boast two bottom teeth (!). Is that insanely early or is that just my impression?

You’d think I’d remember that but I don’t.


Not pictured: my mom, Trooper, Posey, and me…because I’m taking the picture.

 I mentioned yesterday that we went to Indiana to pick up a table. This set belonged to my grandparents. When my grandmother moved to her new apartment there was no room for it so she offered it to us. We were very happy to accept! I’d been eating standing for a while. It was nice to finally be able to seat everyone around the table and have room for my parents. We rearranged our upstairs family room to make room for it because it wouldn’t fit in our kitchen or even the official dining room (so I still get to keep the latter as a sitting room/sewing nook). Blessedly, the white carpet hasn’t suffered any worse for the table being in here.

First thing after Old Haus sells: carpet is GONE.

Real Funny? Funny Scary? It’s Real, anyway….

So if you’re still with me, here’s a treat for you. Well, not sure if you will think it is a treat. Myself, I find it hideously hilarious. I mean, imagine you’re driving around England on holiday and suddenly see THIS in a nearby River…


Apparently someone thought making a giant Mr. Darcy travel around England’s waterways would be a good idea.

I think it would scare small children.

But it gave me a laugh when my sister sent me the link. 😉

A little praying never hurt anyone…

Hat tip to my cousin for reminding me of this. Starts tomorrow!

Novena to the Mother of God for our Nation.

Catholics have always turned instinctively for help to the Mother of God in times of need. And so, in 2012 we turn to Our Lady for help. Many of the values that shaped our Country from the beginning seem to be at risk. Pope Benedict XVI and the American Bishops have noted the erosion of religious freedom in the United States, the first value guaranteed by the Constitution.

This Novena to the Mother of God for the Nation will remind us of some of the central truths of the faith, in particular, the Incarnation, passion, death, resurrection of the Lord and Mary’s unique role in our salvation. It will be, in a way, a catechism lesson that challenges us to a deeper conversion to Christ and a more generous life of charity.

The proximity of the Novena to the 2012 Presidential Election will also offer an opportunity to pray for all of our government officials and seek Divine Assistance in the elections.

{pretty, happy, funny, real}

Blogging from my phone again–a little inept at this (there’s something real). ;). We visited my parents for the Independence Day holiday. Unfortunately the prevailing drought conditions caused a nearly statewide ban on fireworks, so our 4th ended very quietly and very early. But we still had a good time.

We packed a lot into our 4th. We went to Mass in the morning to close out the Fortnight for Freedom. Then we headed to the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis for some fun for all before heading back to my old hometown’s 4th of July parade. This year the parade route was altered because of construction but that was good because so many more people–us included–garnered a front row seat. This also meant that between our kids and their cousin, we gathered more candy than they did at Halloween. So without further ado, here’s some pretty, happy, funny, and real from our day:
(in backward order–told you I was inept! 😉 )











Independence Day


Prayer for the Protection of Religious Liberty
O God our Creator,
from your provident hand we have received
our right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
You have called us as your people and given us
the right and the duty to worship you, the only true God,
and your Son, Jesus Christ.
Through the power and working of your Holy Spirit,
you call us to live out our faith in the midst of the world,
bringing the light and the saving truth of the Gospel
to every corner of society.
We ask you to bless us
in our vigilance for the gift of religious liberty.
Give us the strength of mind and heart
to readily defend our freedoms when they are threatened;
give us courage in making our voices heard
on behalf of the rights of your Church
and the freedom of conscience of all people of faith.
Grant, we pray, O heavenly Father,
a clear and united voice to all your sons and daughters
gathered in your Church
in this decisive hour in the history of our nation,
so that, with every trial withstood
and every danger overcome—
for the sake of our children, our grandchildren,
and all who come after us—
this great land will always be “one nation, under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
We ask this through Christ our Lord.


Tomorrow we celebrate this great and wonderful country in which we live.

I mean that; we do live in a great country.

Our country is an amazing diversity of landforms; natural beauty is around us no matter what corner of the land we happen to be visiting. The people in our country are an interesting diversity of ethnicity and cultural backgrounds, all contributing to the fabric of America’s tapestry. All play a part of what makes her great.

Some Americans are descendants of people who were brought here unjustly, whose freedom was taken from them and made to work and treated no better, sometimes worse than animals. Eventually the slaves were freed and no man now can enslave another in our land.

Many Americans are descendants of those who left the Old Countries to seek freedom–freedom to educate their children without fear of reprisal, freedom to seek work and a better life for their families. Usually, people flocked here because once this country was founded it became a safe haven for those who wanted to freely practice and hold to the beliefs and tenets of their religion.

And now, here in this country, the freedom of religion is being threatened. Are you tired of hearing about it? Do you think it doesn’t apply to you because you’re not Catholic? If one person in this country is wrongfully denied their lawful freedom, then we should be angry. We should stand up in their defense, because if it happens to them today then it happens to you tomorrow.

Whether or not you believe in the use of contraception is not as material as whether you believe that our government should overreach its own ability to impose fines on the Catholic Church and other religious institutions for not abiding by this unjust mandate. Hospitals will be affected by this. Schools and colleges will be affected by this. Charities will be affected by this–charities that already help millions around the world by responding to disasters with medical care, food, and true aid (and by that I mean without first demanding that the areas receiving aid also receive condoms and “family planning” programs–as if that helps after a famine, earthquake, war, hurricane, you name it).

We are told to just forget what we believe, what Catholics have held for centuries and yea, what even Protestants accepted as late in history as the 1930s. Forget and submit, or even just accept an unacceptable “compromise” wherein the government can decide which charity, school, institution of higher learning, hospital, and even church is “religious enough” to be granted exemption from fines and penalties. That is NOT freedom of religion. That is coercion.

And why must we do this? Why must we bend or lose our freedom? We are told so that health care may be more affordable since less undesirable or unwanted children will be born.

Say again?

Our freedom is violated so that less children cost this country money?!?! Are we animals? Are we commodities to be bought and sold like this? Is there no other way to save money on health care than to make sure less Americans are born and contributing to the country in the future?

What gave us the right to decide this?

Who gave us the power over life like this?

And what is to come if the mandate passes? Who is next to be sacrificed to supposed “economy”?

How does this keep America great?

That is why we will not bow, nor will we submit to this.



{pretty, happy, funny, real}

I came across this picture from Haus Meister’s phone and decided to go ahead and post it. I might as well make it onto my blog once in a while. 😉
She’s not sad or anything like it; her head is bowed to keep the hat on. On Sunday she didn’t want to change into her playclothes right away. Always nice when the rough and tumble one wants to stay dressy once in a while.
Big brother sits on the floor making the Baby laugh. That’s his gift. He can always make his brothers and sisters laugh.
Watch out, walls! He’s armed and dangerous! Not sure what the ladle is for in the holster there, but he’s not afraid to use it.
(And see–we do wash our walls)