Seven Quick Takes: Friday, February 27–Around the House

The quiet beauty of the morning before the kids were up. I love tulips.

 1) This week I have resolved myself to February and a lingering winter. We have been mostly at home because we have not really had any place we had to go. I have been tackling projects that I meant to do last February, like put curtain ties on the bedroom windows (instead of clothes pins) and getting some extra wall decor up. I have also been taking on some chores that I usually neglect because of the effort and time they take. And my nesting has led me to do things like order baby diaper covers and make a registry of things this baby is going to need. So, these quick takes are mostly about the house.

2) I had a little date with my double oven and Norwex cleaning products. I could not get every spot, but it is much better and shiny:

I then took on the rest of the kitchen deep cleaning. I think I need to work this into my weekly schedule, like doing one kitchen chore a week so that I don’t put it off for six months and then wear myself out in a week trying to get it all done.

3) My father’s father was a photographer, and last winter I spent an evening with two of my aunts going through photographs and taking my favorites home. I have been meaning to hang them for awhile. We don’t have a lot of common area wall space (that is not in the play room), so we only put two things up for now.

 The first is a picture of an old man reading in a really nice room. If you want to see the photograph well, you are going to have to come over and see it yourself.

The second is a series of photographs of a house that seemed inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright. It is probably near Los Angelos somewhere since that is where my grandfather got his art degree. We are really enjoying having some original and good art on our walls, and I like that it is done by my grandfather.

4) L asked for a painting of her name patron saint for Christmas to hang in her room with her name cross stitch (made by her aunt). G was given a Romanian style painted glass icon of her name patron saint at birth, and it has been hanging with her cross stitch for years. For L, we found a poster print of a painting, and finally hung in her room the other week. With the plan for the bunk bed, we decided to put all four framed items on one wall. I think it turned out really well, but you will have to come see it for yourself.

5) To add to Lent for the children (in addition to our Lent wreath and stational churches) we decided to do a bean jar for charitable deeds and a crown of thorns for sacrificial deeds. Since they are all below the age of reason, we have to remind them of it and tell them when they have done something worthy of it. They also look nice.

A certain girl likes to have her saint statue “talking” to Jesus or Our Lady.

6) The girls and I planted some basil seeds this week. It is supposed to be ready to harvest in 60-90 days which will put us in April. My thought is that we could transplant the basil to the garden after the last frost, and then start another set indoors to have for next fall and winter. Gardeners, does it matter how old basil is when you plant it outside?

The basil pots are covered in plastic until the seeds sprout.

Our mini rose bush and parsley are thriving. We have been using the parsley on various dishes, and it is acting the same as our parsley did last summer. The more you use it, the thicker it grows.

7) I will leave you with a few gems from the girls:

G (almost 6) at the end of quiet time the other day: “I was just finishing up my prayer time. It took me longer than normal today. I said a Hail Mary, an Our Father, a St. Michael, and then made up some prayers to Jesus.”

L (4), when I brought her toys into her quiet time (after her “sleeping time”): “I was singing about when I should get my toys. I was also singing Jesus songs. I sang a song to the monsters about how Jesus died on the cross so that we could go to Heaven.”
Me: “What did the monsters think of that?”
L: “I don’t know. They did not say.”

F (2) all the time: “I have to go potty. No, I don’t have to go.”

Linking up with Kelly at This Ain’t the Lyceum.

Seven Quick Takes: Friday, August 8

Our rainbow…

 1. So, the reason that I did not write quick takes last week was that we have been extremely busy since the last time I wrote them. I finished my last ones talking about how we decided to repaint the exterior of our house. Minutes after I published it, M found rotten, disintegrating wood around four of our windows. The wood was under a metal cover that was put on when the windows were last replaced. We did some Google searches of rotten wood and stucco houses and saw some pretty awful scenarios. We were envisioning two whole sides of our house having rotten wood underneath the stucco, and then having to spend all of our money and more to fix the house. As it turns out, we found a really nice carpenter to come out assure us that it was just the wood around the windows that was bad, make a good offer to fix it that same week. So, we took him up on it, and while he did the work he told us that the stuff (I don’t know what it is called) behind our stucco is made of some indestructible material they used to make back in the day and even if water did get back to it, it would never rot out. And the day that we learned that the wood was not rotten beyond the windows, a rainbow appeared in the sky.

2. We went ahead with the painting, but first there was power-washing. Our awesome friends T and F own a power washer, which they lent to us in exchange for garden lettuce (well that is not exactly how it happened, but T sure likes our lettuce). Here are some post power washing photos (the paint was not this bad before:

Back of the house

South side of the house

Up close

3. We started painting Tuesday afternoon, doing the first coat on one side. Then we did all three other sides on Wednesday. M worked on the second coat and the windows yesterday. Tomorrow M, my sister S, and my brother-in-law are going to finish the second coat and the house will be repainted! Hooray!

The South side with one coat.
The back all finished up!

I did not realize how bad it looked until we did the painting. We have been getting comments from neighbors that we have not even met yet on how good it looks. So, of all the good things to come out of our repainting, besides maintaining our house, is that our neighbors really like the way it looks and our house will blend in really well with all of our snow.

 4. Remember my best squash friend, good old mother blue hubbard?

I was inordinately excited two weeks ago to discover female flowers on my squash plant. And now we have three baby blue hubbards. I am so excited for grotesque looking squash to grow in my garden and to make delicious pies, breads, and soups.

Tiny squash!
This one is trying to get out of the yard.

The biggest so far. And my does my plant need some water….

5. In addition to painting this last week, I have been getting ready for our summer visit from the W’s (my sister M, her husband J, and their four lovely kids) and my sister S. It is a lot of work to get a whole house ready for guests with a broken toe (which still needs the funny shoe but not hurting anymore). We had a birthday cake for three year old B yesterday and went to the zoo today. Mostly, the kids are just happy to be with each other. And the weather it absolutely lovely outside in the shade. We are going to try for a sisters’ outing one of these evenings. Hooray!

6. I think I can handle home schooling this year, and I am determined to follow a schedule. People tell me again and again that I do not need to do much for kindergarten, but the thing is, my kids do better with a little structure in their lives. And I am pretty sure and hour of structured school time for a five year old will not ruin her experience of childhood. Not that anyone is saying that it is, but it seems that a lot of seasoned home schooling moms think that kindergarten should be really laid back. We are going to stick with simple science, math, and catechism, and solidify reading and printing. I think that this kindergarten year is largely for me to realize that I can do it. I can teach and help my children learn. It is very intimidating to take home schooling on, and I have been trying to get a mental handle on it for over five years.

7. Finally, I have to confess that I had writer’s block. The piece I wrote for Truth and Charity yesterday took a lot of mental energy and I think it was met with a lot of spiritual resistance. But I persevered, and if you did not get a chance to read it and you care about traditional prayer or charismatic prayer, I hope that you will.

Linking up with Jen! Head on over to find more Quick Takes!

Seven Quick Takes: Saturday, July 25, 2014

 1. I have two medical things to discuss this week. The first has to do with my dad. You may remember about his emergency surgery back in January to repair his aortic dissection. Well, the surgery was a success and he is alive and getting better day by day. We learned yesterday after a CT scan that his aorta did not heal as well as the doctors would have liked, and they recommend that he not run at all ever again. This is a blow for him, especially since he has been looking forward to running again since his surgery. They do not think that naturally any further healing of the aorta will occur. His aorta is as healed as it is going to be, except by miraculous divine intervention. So, I again ask for prayers for Dad, that he be healed completely from his dissection and that he is able to be happy with his limited aortic ability should his complete healing never occur. We are so thankful to have him with us still, even if I am never able to run with him again. Thank you for your prayers. 
I can’t decide which shoe I like better…
2. In other medical news, I broke my little toe on the right this week. It is pretty lame to have a broken toe. This means no more running for me for 4-6 weeks and I have to wear a funny shoe and have a purplish toe. It happened when I was walking through a doorway and accidentally kicked the edge of the wall. It was like: step, kick, hop, hop, hop on the other foot, OW!!!!, tuck L back into bed, hobble back out to the couch, send G down to get M to get me ice, feeling nauseated, ow that still really hurts, maybe I should see the doctor for an xray, calling my awesome physical therapist sister to get her advice, calling the doctor, calling a friend for a ride so I don’t strain the possible break, seeing the doctor, getting the xray, maybe not broken, getting call from doctor… and yes, it was most definitely broken. A teeny tiny hairline fracture which disables me for a month. But there are lots of things to offer it up for these days, so the Catholic in me had no problem there…

3. We have a new little rabbit living under the shed. The girls have named him “Peter Rabbit.” He is pretty cute and looks cuddly. In my surplus of lettuce this week I donated some of the wilted, bug eaten lettuce it to the rabbits. Both rabbits chowed down on that stuff. It had a soporific effect on the rabbits (a la The Flopsy Bunnies by Beatrix Potter), and they went and took a nap.

Cottontail and Peter. Cute bunnies until they find a way into our garden. For now, we can watch the life of bunnies while we eat breakfast.

4. I organized the pantry today. Having this broken toe is limiting in some ways, but not enough to prevent me from reorganizing the pantry. It looks so nice and tidy, for now. I even threw a few stale things out. It was quite freeing. Now I must organize something else….

The bumper and crib sheet we have had forever. They kind of match the decor… and that wall is looking really bare…

5. I have been wanting to get a rug for F’s room since we moved into the house. It is the only bedroom I did not paint, which was fine since all the bedrooms had been repainted before the house went on the market. But it was stuck with these cream colored walls which matched perfectly to my rocking chair, making a very creamy, woody room when you had the crib, chair, and changing table all together. Slowly I changed things. I got some curtains of a pretty teal. F got a handmade quilt from her great grandmother which I threw over the rocking chair. Then I found the toy bins on clearance, which replaced the diaper boxes. And after looking out for the right rug for over a year, I found it. It was $18 (a back to school sale), and has all the right colors. Even F likes it. I am pretty happy with it. The only last thoughts I have for the room is maybe something more for the walls, and curtain ties instead of clothes pins…

That little door looks like it might lead to a secret passage for babies. It is actually a door to plumbing.

6. This bowl of fruit makes me really happy. 

We have kept our Easter candle out without the lilies since Pentecost and it looked so bare and plain. So, today I was inspired by fruit. The only problem is that by the end of the week, it will be an empty bowl…

7. M and I have decided to repaint the outside of the house. It is a stucco house, which normally does not need painting, but someone in the past painted it. This means we have to maintain the paint. Plus, the windows need re-caulking. So, we are doing it all on a whim we had last week. We do not normally do things like this so spontaneously, but it just made sense to do it now, especially since we have no little babies this summer. It is not like I can do much to help anyway (my toe), but at least I will be able to managed the kids easier without a tiny nursling. And while that kind of sounds like I might be pregnant, I am not. It just means, we would like to have a tiny new baby by next summer, but it is not happening yet.

That’s all folks! I am linking up with Carolyn, the guest host of Quick Takes, this week.

Now We are Five

The big girls helped me make this sign with their awesome gluing skills.
I have been unable to blog for the past week or so besides my bimonthly post for Truth and Charity. We have been so busy here with leaky basements and birthdays, that I have not had an afternoon to sit down and write! We have discovered where the Spring thaw hits our basement, and where to move snow from next Winter so that it does not happen again. It was a very stressful 24 hours of moving snow and ice and trying to keep the carpet dry!
That was the beginning of the week, and then we had our double March birthdays at the end of the week. M had his on Friday, and he requested a very easy cake. I just had to make a white cake, whipped cream, and cut up some strawberries. It was very yummy, though I have not mastered the homemade whipped cream as well as I would like. I once whipped it too long and it became very buttery, and this time I am thinking maybe I did not do it long enough. I might need to have someone else show me their technique, since words in a cookbook are not doing it for me this time.

Then my biggest girl, G, turned 5 on Saturday. I am not sure five is an age to worry about, but maybe when she turns 16 we will all have to beware of the Ides of March. We have a fairly entertaining story of the beginning of my labor with her. I had false labor of four hours three separate times before actual labor started during the two weeks before her birth. When my first real labor contractions started it was about 5pm and we had some friends over helping prepare M’s birthday dinner. They were about 10 minutes apart and I was able to cook and socialize through them, so I did. No one had a clue that I was having more painful and closer contractions for three hours, during which we cooked dinner, ate it, did dishes, and then had the wonderful Wegmans cheesecake. Around 8pm, I realized that I could not cover it up any more and that I needed the apartment to ourselves. When a friends suggested we play a game, I announced that I was in labor, and they happily went on their way. G had the niceness to wait until the next day to be born, so that she and her father did not have to share a birthday. M already shares his birthday with his sister who was born (five weeks early) the day he turned three.

Now we have a very emotional five year old living under our roof. She was so wound up all weekend, her emotions swinging from extremely excited to very upset, depending on what she was thinking. I think she enjoyed herself, but it is a good thing birthdays only come once a year. Oh, my little G. I think five years must be a little awkward, in that it is not quite the age of a big girl, but also no longer a toddler. She is a preschooler, learning kindergarten things, and when she gets to kindergarten, she will be ready for a lot of first grade things. She is a caring big sister, but also very sensitive about her things. She is full of questions and ideas, and eager for affirmation. She does best when she has guidelines for her activities, but is also given room to imagine. I feel like I did not fully appreciate her babyhood, because it was my first time, and am trying hard to appreciate her at every new age now, even though it is my first time. I just wish I had more patience with her, but I that means I need to be working on letting go of more of my time to give to her. I hope her year of five is full of learning and growing in virtue.

Happy Birthday to M and G!

Seven Quick Takes: Friday, January 17

1. I had to put down a novel, The Nether World by George Gissing, to write these today. It is either a sign that it is a good book or I have lost the habit of writing since we traveled for three weeks. Or maybe both. I have had several topics bouncing around my head this week and all I have to show for it is that I am 82 pages into a new novel, which is better I suppose than perusing the internet for all of naptimes. Being married to M means that he thinks it is a productive naptime when I sit and read for an hour or so, which is not a problem in my book. I will try to get back into writing in the next week. Another reason I put off writing these is that we did not really do much interesting this week, besides playdate, our church moms’ group, and the library. It was a pretty laid back week. Oh, and I reorganized the kids preschool things moving them from the front closet back to their permanent home in the basement. See, these are the kind of quick takes I am writing for you all this week. Not very interesting.

2. Have you heard of the new Spencer Trappist Ale? While they claim it is named for the town the monks live in, I am sure they also had our family in mind. I hope to try the genuine trappist beer someday; maybe someone will ship it to Minnesota.

3. L (3) has a fever today and I am really hoping that it is not the flu. It would be pretty annoying to have us all get sick, but then I could have reasons to stay inside and at home and not feel guilty not seeing anybody. Please pray for our health, because it would be much more fun to be able to go places. 🙂

4. Sunday it was 39°F out and I took the big girls outside and we reconstructed the old snowman and made him a snowwoman. I am pretty sure that he is a few inches shorter than he was originally. They also took advantage of the warmer temperatures to go sledding with M. They loved it. I think next time we will all have to go.

5. I am really thankful that we invested in a treadmill back in October. I have been using it a lot, and because it is way to cold to exercise outside. I might actually get back to my pre-baby weight. I have managed to after each baby and was giving up on this time since it has been over a year. I guess it just gets harder as one gets older? I mean I am closer to thirty than twenty…

6. M and I spent most of an evening the other night sitting and talking like we used to do back in college. When we lived on campus we would meet up in the courtyard between our dormitories in the evening and pray Night Prayer and then talk for awhile. When we were both off campus, we would eat dinner at one of our houses, do homework, and then sit and talk for awhile until M drove me home or he left for his house. Since we’ve had kids, we usually plan on doing things like reading or watching shows or movies, rarely do we sit and just talk when the kids are in bed. (We talk a lot throughout a day, but evenings are usually for relaxing.) What inspired it was the talk our pastor Fr. M gave at the moms’ group, when he asked about the first dates each woman had had with her husband. Later M and I reminisced about our “first dates” which consisted of walking together all over the campus of Franciscan University of Steubenville, and then the second time we dated all over the little town of Gaming, Austria. Even now walks alone together, especially in the snow, remind us of our early relationship.

7. My friend C gave the girls this Advent calendar published by Magnificat. The kids really like it, and what is so great about it that it has a little window to open on Candlemas Day (The Presentation of Our Lord) February 2, which is the Traditional end of the Christmas season. So, our tree is still up as well as the lights I put up in our nook. If you need a little bit more of Christmas or the Season after Epiphany, come on over. 🙂

Linking on up with the lovely host of Seven Quick Takes Jen the Executive Vice President of Blogging at

Seven Quick Takes: Friday, January 10

1. Merry Christmas (it is still the Season After Epiphany!) and Happy New Year! I took a little vacation from my blog to spend nearly three weeks traveling with M and the kids to visit almost every relative we could and a number of friends. Of four large family gatherings in three different states, we only missed one and that could not be helped. As Road Trip Pros, we clocked 2200 miles on our van going from Minnesota, through Wisconsin, Indiana, stopping in Michigan, stopping in Ohio, going back through Indiana, stopping in Illinois, stopping in Missouri, and then headed back up North through Iowa and back into Minnesota! It was a lot of fun, and we had great times with family.

2. The house survived our prolonged absence without any major problems, without any problems that we can tell. Even the Polar Vortex left our home unscathed. Turning off the water and the hot water heater, and praying continually everyday that nothing would go wrong or flood seems to have worked out for us this time. We would not like to have another Saga of the Leaky Pipe.

3. Our good old snowman still stands in the front yard. I have never had a snowman this old! I will have to post a picture of him when I take a new one.

The day he was made. Now he is five weeks old!

4. The kids had today what we call “the grandparent effect”, which occurs after they have been visiting with other adults who give them more attention than they normally get at home. L (3) complained all day that she wanted to go on another trip, and G (4.5) got so cranky that she took a nap (which happens for her every 60 days or so). F (1) could not handle life today, but I think that was due to teething and having a cold. We will adjust back into normal life soon.

5. When we were in St. Louis, we were reminded of how they deal with snow outside of Minnesota (and Buffalo, NY): CLOSE EVERYTHING! They had 8-12 inches on a Sunday, and then a high of 5 the next day. Everything was closed, all the schools and many businesses. We stayed inside, because, really who likes to be in a -15 windchill? My mom braved the great outdoors to pick up our favorite St. Louis Style pizza. They opened at 4pm for pickup only, and we were so relieved! We almost went all the way to St. Louis without our favorite pizza! We made a Ted Drewes Frozen Custard run the night before the storm, and my dad stocked up on their quart sizes while everyone else was buying milk and bread.

6. Now that we are past the holiday business, I am going to start a Winter deep clean/organization. There are things we moved that we never unpacked and things that got brought up from the basement that never were put back, plus we have a new excess of toys. I am going to make it through the Winter by busying myself inside with lots of things to do. Starting next week I am going to make my lists and get into organization mode.

7. I am not sure what else to say tonight, since I am being waited for by my husband. We are going to rewatch a few Sherlocks before PBS airs the new season in 11 days. If you want to catch up, PBS has the old shows available for watching until January 19.

Linking up with Jen at Conversion Diary.

The Saga of the Leaky Pipe: A Blessing in Disguise

Back on June 29th this year, we came home from a lovely vacation on Lake Michigan to find that our finished basement had a lake of its own. Suspicious things were growing on the walls and unpleasant odors were wafting up the stairs. Thus, the Saga of the Leaky Pipe began. Four months later the basement has been made new again, and even better than it was before.

Before: Here are some pictures of what the basement looked like in August before the asbestos tile was removed:

There was one big family room with knotty pine paneling. That green tile is the bad stuff.
The other end of the room wear you can still see the berber carpet. Notice the un-carpeted stairs.
The laundry room wall that was ripped out.
Ugly floors.
This is the wall of the furnace room that let all the water pass through.
The back drywall, wall of the bathroom with water damage and mold. Yuck!
The bathroom floor was water logged.

A brief overview of what was done:

-The water was mitigated. Carpet was torn up, walls were ripped out, and a monster dehumidifier sat in the basement purring for 10 days
-Restoration contractors came and made estimates
-Waiting for them and insurance

-Removal of asbestos
-Cabinets and ceiling were ripped out
-Framing for our new room put in

-Electrical work
-Plumbing work
-Drywall: sheetrock and mudding

-Walls painted
-Ceiling put in

-Finishing touches

The wait is over! Since we did drywall instead of wood paneling, we were able to have a few extra things done to restore the basement to a matching, livable space. A lot of new estimates were made by the contractors in the name or matching. The pictures do have a bit of clutter that has not quite found its home.

M’s Study. What was done: new carpet (replaced with extra money). This room had no damage, but the carpet was pretty old and a bit basement smelly.

The paneling in the study is not as nice as the paneling we had in the other room,
but it reminds M of his house that he lived in back in college.

Family Room. What was done: new walls, new ceiling, new cushy, soft carpet.

The kids got the toys out for the day before I took the pictures.
That dark hallway leads to the Spare Oom.
Other way. These built-in cabinets remained.

Laundry Room. What was done: new drywall, new floor tile, and new paint color.

It is nice having a ceiling!
I am loving the use of the laundry chute!

Spare Oom. What was done: the room was made! It is an L shape so a picture is hard to take. One day, if we stay in this house we will dig out an egress window.

The built in shelves were part of the original basement, and were redone to hide the water meter.

My parents were staying in this room. You can also, when you come and visit!

Full Bathroom. What was done: new back wall, new sink cabinet, new floor, new paint, and I picked out a new curtain.

I got my yellow room.
Fun new floor!

Stairs. What was done: wood paneling changed to drywall and the CARPET! We almost did the stair carpeting before we moved in, but decided to wait. It would have been ruined if we had by all the work that was done.

The left doorway leads to the hallway to the bathroom and furnace room.
The right doorway is the study.
That gate is for the top of the stairs for when I want the door open.

We feel truly blessed by this house. We were happy with the finished basement when we bought the house, and thought that maybe someday we would add an extra room, but to have it done just six months after moving in, was beyond what we hoped and prayed for in a house. God has provided abundantly for us, and we are full of gratitude!

In the Nick of Time…

We woke up to this outside, and the kids are the only ones happy about another six months of Winter:

What is better? Snow in November or snow in April and May?

 But the new finished basement/lower level was also completed today! It was a long four months of waiting from the discovery of our leaky pipe and flooded basement until now. 

More pictures will come soon! I promise!

Seven Quick Takes, Oct. 18

This is my second post of the day after a weeks hiatus. Let’s just say that mothering three children does not always allow for blogging…

1. For number one, I want to thank Fr. Z for turning my latest Truth and Charity post into a “Guest Post” on his blog. I really appreciate that he read my email and took time to read my post. Thanks, Father!

2. The Saga of the Leaky Pipe Continues… Here is the current look of our basement:

This one is not quite current, the ceiling in this family room is mostly put up.

The laundry room is painted.

Spare Oom. Maybe we should skip carpet and go for a marbled cement look?

While entertained hopes of the basement being finished by next week, the carpet is not due to be manufactured for two more weeks and the ceiling is slow in going up…

3. I was trying to convince L (2.75) to go outside today by telling her that it was going to be cold soon. Her response: “When it gets cold out then it will snow and then we can go ice skating!” She has no clue what ice skating it like… though maybe we need to look into taking her sometime this winter…

4. I bought a large squash at the farmer’s market this morning. The farmer told me that it would be good for pie. He cut one open to show the inside. It looked orangey-red and fleshy. I think it will be good. Last year we tried out the blue hubbard squash, and it made delicious pies and breads.

I am not sure what kind of squash it is, but it looks like a pretty close relative of the pumpkin.

5. I first read Dostoyevsky while in college, starting with The Brothers Karamazov. It took me a really long time to read the book. Until now I thought it was because it was a long book, but now I am realizing that it probably was because whenever I read Dostoyevsky I get so caught up in the story and the characters that I lose track of myself. I started Crime and Punishment a couple of weeks ago, and am only about 70 pages into it. Wednesday I spent about 30 minutes of naptime reading it, and got caught up so much in Raskolnikov and his emotions, thoughts, and actions it took me about 10 minutes to realize that I had not just committed an awful crime for which I was probably going to get caught for… Dostoyevsky, yeah… read him.

6. I am currently watching Game 6 of the NLCS with my MLB app.  It is possibly the last baseball game I will watch this season because of our voluntary lack of television. If the Cardinals hold onto their 9-0 lead then I will have to listen to the KMOX broadcast of the World Series games.

7. And I leave you with Carly Simon singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame.” And the video I want won’t imbed so you have to go there.

Head on over to Jen’s for more Quick Takes!

Seven Quick Takes, Oct. 11

1. Today I am pretty sure I hit the ultimate level of mom-coolness. Well, probably not, but I felt pretty cool cruising home from our home school gym co-op in our Honda Odyssey with all the windows down including the sun roof with three little girls giggling and shrieking about the wind on this gorgeous, warmish Autumn afternoon.

Photo from The Adventures of Kristin and Adam.

And then we got to the High Bridge. I sped across with Mumford & Sons blaring, and the fall colors blazing. It was a truly fun drive. Okay, I am done, and now you all know that we are slightly obsessed with Mumford & Sons in our home. I am not even sure what the social stigma is that comes with that, but there it is…

2. Saga of the Leaky Pipe Update: Do you smell that? That is the smell of latex paint coming from my basement. The sheetrock is up and the mudding is complete. I directed the proper paint cans to the right rooms this morning and the painting has begun. Tomorrow is supposed to be trimming and ceiling day. Then all we will have left is lighting and outlets, and our flooring. Maybe it will be done before the end of the month! Next week I will post some pictures for sure.

3. L’s head: The poor girl was really feeling her concussion for ten days, like the doctor said she might. I think she is finally recovered now that she is up to mischief again, as opposed to lying on the couch with a headache all day. Yesterday she dumped milk out of the jug all over the table and floor. This is a good sign that she is healed.

4. Cardinals v. Tigers in the World Series? They both still have to win their pennants… M and I being in a relationship has really boded well for both teams. The Cardinals have gone to the playoffs five times since M and I started dating eight years ago. Plus, they have won the World Series twice (which they had not done since 1982). The Tigers have been to the playoffs four times in the past eight years and won two pennants. I think this is clear evidence that the Tigers and the Cardinals will both be winning teams until death do us part…

5. We have my dear friend C visiting us this weekend. She ranks pretty high on my kids list of favorite people. L (2.75) ranks her visit as highly as she does the next snowfall: “Tomorrow Miss C is coming and it will snow! Then I will eat the snow up and jump in it and play in it forever and ever.”

6. I discovered that our library has picture books with audio recordings. I have been allowing G (4.5) to listen to them during her quiet time with my old stereo that I have had since middle school. It does keep her happy for awhile, but I am wondering if it is stifling her ability to imagine on her own during quiet time. “I’m bored!” she just told me, but she is also going through a phase where she does not want to take things out because she does not want to have to clean them up…

7. We have been going to the 7:30 AM Extraordinary Form Low Mass at our parish St. Agnes. I wrote a piece on it for Truth and Charity this week: “The Holy Quiet of the Low Mass”. Even with three little children, the low Mass is a very moving experience.

Head on over to Jen’s Conversion Diary for more Quick Takes.