Outside My Window::

::same old, same old. Huge mountains of snow. More expected this week. I still love it. I think I'd like living in Alaska.

I am Listening to::


I am wearing ::

:: a flannel nightgown and cashmere socks.

I am Thankful For::

::a few hours with Daddy in town before he hit the road again. Oh, how life is so much better with him in it!

I am Pondering:

::St. John of the Cross

"Wisdom enters through love, silence, and mortification. It is great wisdom to know how to be silent and to look at neither the remarks, nor the deeds, nor the lives of others."

This quote will define my Lent.

I am Reading:

::The Gift of an Ordinary Day and another that I hope to review tomorrow.

From the Kitchen::

::we had great success with our new Dutch oven this week. I made an amazing pork shoulder roast and some seriously good chicken cacciatore. Recipes soon, I promise.

::homemade Oreos for Valentine's Day. Yum!

I am Thinking:

::That the social media world will be just fine without me. (I am so annoyed with Buzz--great name though; suits the annoyance factor very well.) I'm still trying to figure out why my Google "share" has suddenly sprung to life with followers. I'm mostly ignoring it, since I don't have time to figure out how it all works. I share items on my Google Reader and for the longest time, that was just a nice thing. Now, it's suddenly a platform for all kinds of conversation that require time and attention.  Please don't be insulted if it seems like I'm ignoring you on Google anywhere--it's nothing personal. I just haven't had time to figure out what it all is and set it up so that it works for me. My Google attention went first to shutting it all down for my kids. Before I knew what happened, my 11-year-old figured out Buzz and was buzzing all over the 'net. Google and Buzz will wait, for quite sometime probably. I've other things to do right now. My plan is to put some old favorites in my Google Reader for Lent. It's a good time to revisit, I think.  I might need more silence than the average bear, or something. Whatever it is, I rarely enjoy a foray into the world of online discussion. Buttoning up those windows now, to prepare for a quiet Lent. I do love to blog, though and hope that my quiet will provide sweeter fruit there.

I am Creating::

::My children and I are working hard on some blog changes, both here and on Serendipity. I have no idea how long it's going to take us, but once we're finished, I think you'll find things much more navigable. And prettier. Pretty is good.

On my iPod::

:: AP alerts. This is a good thing. I'm a bit addicted to cable news and that noise has to go, too. This way, AP alerts give me a little ding if something truly newsworthy happens. A little, very contained ding.

Towards a Real Education::

::It's February, time of keeping on. I've actually really benefited from the snow days.  When the public schools are closed, as they have been all last week, all afternoon activities are canceled. When there are no afternoon activities, our days at home are much more productive. I know I should look at the preceding statement and make some huge life-altering decision but that's not likely to happen. Instead, I'll just continue to look at snow days as valuable gifts.

Towards Rhythm and Beauty:

::it's time strip things bare for Lent. We'll drape the religious items in purple ribbon. I bought some last year...wonder where I put it?

::To Live the Liturgy:

::Mardi Gras, Ash Wednesday, then silence, silence, silence.

::I am Hoping and Praying:

::for Linda at Sacred Heart Books and for her parents who are suffering serious health problems. Won't you pray too; she asked me to beg your prayers.

In the Garden:

::It's cold and white and  blowing again.

Around the House:

::hey, guess what? The floor guys say they're coming back tomorrow.

On Keeping Home:

::I suppose it's time for a Lenten cleaning plan. I think I might be able to do the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge without ever leaving the basement.

One of My Favorite Things:

::baby snuggles.

Sarah Annie this week:

::We've noticed that everything she says--all her "favorites"--start with "B": book, ball, bath, boots, Bee (her name for Mary Beth).

A Few Plans for the Rest of the Week:

::Mike was home for five hours yesterday so we had our Valentine's Day Chinese dinner for lunch. Paddy made Kung Pao chicken and we had three different kinds of chocolate cookie treats.

::The calendar is crammed with makeup activities and games.'s supposed to snow on Monday. ;-)

::Mardi Gras on Tuesday

::Ash Wednesday on Wednesday. (Is it still a sacrifice if I say I'm looking forward to this liturgical season?)

A Picture Thought I'm sharing:

The freezer is stocked with homemade chicken soup. Seems like the winter thing to do.