Notes to Self














{All photos are a GIFT from my friend Nicole. I was afraid to take my camera to the beach. }

I have a dozen or so blog posts running through my head. I'm pinning notes to myself here and hope to follow up later this week.

::noticing God's glory: 

 Mike helped me in the garden this week. Actually, he began the task while I was at the beach and we finished up together when I returned. It's been so wet that there was a riduculous amount of weeding and pruning to do. I'm so grateful for his help and his company!

::listening to 

Silence. It's crazy early, but I have to grab it while I can get it. It's going to be a very rare thing very soon. 

::clothing myself in 


These shoes. Several people have asked about them. I love them. I wear them every day, everywhere. Skirts, shorts, jeans. They're awesome!

::talking with my children about these books

We're wrapping up our Shakespeare studies with Christian. Actually, we're wrapping up all our studies with Christian. This is a bittersweet time, indeed. We shall continue our Shakespeare Fridays in the fall.

::thinking and thinking

about how I think the Internet is the modern day Tower of Babel. It's amazing how people come together and completely misunderstand one another!

::pondering prayerfully

"There is a small lack of humility in wanting to be Mary before having worked with Martha." ~St. Teresa of Avila

::carefully cultivating rhythm

Well, then. Some pruning happened in the garden, but some even more significant pruning happened in our planning. I think I might even have a sense of peace about our rhythm. More on this one later.

::creating by hand

There is a lovely bunch of ten-year-old girls who have squeezed into ill-fitting jazz costumes for the last time. I promised them all that we would make them into headbands after the last show. The time is now. Going to try to fit that into a very full week.

::learning lessons in

letting go. Here we go. It's August. Countdown to the Great Leaving. This time last year, all nine of my children lived in this house. In nine months time--from December to August-- the oldest three will have flown the nest. All boys. The dynamic of this household is definitely changing. Christian leaves in three weeks. I've never been away from Christian for more than six days. 


Moving on...

::encouraging learning 

I'm very excited about plans for the new term. The absence of the big boys and some pretty drastic changes to our rhythm will yield very fruitful days, I hope. Not that the big boys disrupted our rhythm. 

Well,actually, they sort of did.

I'm super excited about plans this year, which is a lovely surprise. For the younger three, t's going to be a Storybook Year, heavily dependent on these lists (browse the lefthand column--there aren't enough days in a childhood for the treasures here). For the older three (and the younger, too, actually), lots of fresh inspiration from these thoughts:

Nature Deficit Disorder

Teaching Boys & Other Children Who Would Rather Make Forts All Day

The Four Language Arts

Nurturing Competent Communicators

Fairytales and the Moral Imagination


::begging prayers

Please continue to pray for Shawn, for Elizabeth DeHority, for my friend Carmen, and for my mother-in-law, who soon begins radiation treaments.

::living the liturgy

 Daily Mass: critical to the new rhythm.

::keeping house

Last fall --actually all last year-- I prayed a very specific prayer for our house renovations. I prayed that this place would beautifully reflect the living of God's will as a Christian family. I had visions of ladies' Bible studies and a Catechesis of the Good Shepherd atrium. Perhaps, in time, that will happen. But last night, I had a rare flash of insight, kind of a Holy Spirit pat on the back. 

Patrick has come home very frequently since leaving in January. He has never, ever come home alone. Always, he brings someone along. Last night, after he won a National Championship in Richmond, we got home around 1:00 AM. We rolled in with eight of our children and five extras. One of the girls whom Patrick invited sighed a happy sigh when she walked in and said, "It smells like home. It's just so nice." If my mission these days is to be home away from home for homesick college students, I'll take it.

And be very grateful. Not what I imagined. Better than that, right now. 

::crafting in the kitchen 

I learned a thing or two at the beach last week. Only the girls and Nick came with me. Cooking for six, when five of them are female? Much. Less. Food. I overpacked. I had leftover spaghetti three meals! This fall, I might just make a recipe or two as written, instead of automatically doubling or tripling. Weird. 

::loving the moments

when they are reunited. Karoline was literally giddy upon seeing Katie after being separated for a week. She missed her so much!

::giving thanks 

for going and coming home again. All last week, it was just Karoline, Sarah, Mary Beth and Christian at home. Everyone else was off on an adventure. They all had a grand time. They're all glad to be home.

::planning for the week ahead

I had so much planned for last week. Only four at home, I was going to finish school planning and dig out the basement and deep clean closets and on and on. Instead, I had a whopper cold that completely leveled me for the entire week. The upside is that with so few children home, I didn't get way behind being sick. The downside is that I didn't really get to relish the week the way I'd hoped. 

This week is crazy busy. The pre-season intensives have begun. There will be much driving hither and yon. All the beds are filled and there were yoga mats and sleeping bags on the floors as well last night. Tomorrow is a Big Day in the Life of Katie. Her very first pointe shoe fitting:-). Wednesday, we are looking forward to a visit from a Colorado family on Wednesday. And I hear there is a plan for date night on Friday. 








iPhone pics, all mine.

Have a beautiful week, friends!