This catalog came through our mail slot today and I barfed.It is still (technically) summer. My kids are wearing shorts and flip flops and playing in the sprinkler in the afternoons.And last winter was one of the snowiest, coldest winters in Philadelphia history. Also known as "the winter that crushed all the mothers."The cinnamon-scented pinecones and Halloween decor that showed up in stores back in August seemed overeager.This magazine cover is just insensitive; how about givi … [Read more...]

Mom’s Night Out

Our fabulous cast of local Catholic mothers is discussing a regular Mom’s Night Out for the first time ever. Count me in! We have a regular playgroup, but as families grow, the adult:child ratio is increasingly not in our favor, so conversations have become choppy and unsatisfying. There are fewer natural social outlets for moms than ever: most neighborhood mothers are at work, and immediate family members live far away. With a large family, it’s hard to get out much to see friends, and when we d … [Read more...]

Virtue is Beautiful

My kids and I love the original version of this song, yes we are all saps, and I appreciate the spirit behind this version put together by some Mormon guys. What do you think? Pre-teen swoon potential for our girls as they learn to treasure their dignity in a broken culture? Or too ironic and silly to convey a delicate message about beauty and virtue? … [Read more...]

Opening Day of Spring Baseball

I've died and gone to heaven... … [Read more...]

Make Spring!

My kids have been begging constantly to fill the kiddie pool in the backyard. I keep telling them that we will when the temperature reaches the 60s and sunny.This morning, after putting breakfast dishes away, I discovered them playing in the pool, clad in swimsuits, in the 45 degree morning rain. They were just happy that the pool was filling steadily with rain water, hypothermia or not. If Philadelphia hands you an everlasting winter... make spring! … [Read more...]

Five Best Things about Snow Day #38

Today is another snow day. And tomorrow too. And Monday is Presidents’ Day holiday. Yet another five-day winter weekend spent entirely indoors. I don’t know if my children have gone to school more than 3 days during any one week since Thanksgiving. Winter unschooling....Here are the top five reasons to be happy this morning:(5) Plenty of time to finish every Christmas-gifted science kit, coloring book, craft set, and activity pack, which will make spring purging that much easier. “A place … [Read more...]

Intentional about Gratitude, but not about Downton Abbey

Gratitude may be our family's theme for 2014. I am reading a book on thanksgiving and inner peace, and these studies are all over the news. As someone who struggles with both postpartum and seasonal depressive tendencies, I'd like to try being much more intentional about giving thanks to fortify myself in joy and gratitude, before negative thought patterns take hold. The attitude of gratitude seems to rub off on kids as well. From the article linked above: The mere act of giving thanks has t … [Read more...]

Merry Christmas to Mom

We ran out of diaper wipes on one of several snow days last week. (What's with the Antarctic weather in the mid-Atlantic, by the way?) I made my way through the snow to the nearby grocery store for a 3-package bag of wipes, which lasted approximately overnight, then the snow kept falling and I was forced to resort to wet paper towels and baby soap for diaper changes. Sub-par.My Christmas came Monday, when the Wells Fargo wagon was a-comin' down the street for me with a barge-sized Target box … [Read more...]

your favorite Christmas cookie recipe

This coming Sunday, my daughters and I are attending an elegant mother-daughter Christmas cookie exchange. But when it comes to cookies, my repertoire is pretty limited. (Chocolate chip--because really, is there need for anything more?!) The girls are hoping to spend some time on Saturday baking Christmas cookies, and we would be very grateful for your suggestions on Christmas cookie recipes that are fun to make, and not too complicated!, as well as tasty and pretty.My little ladies thank … [Read more...]

The cost of a tooth

What's the going rate for a tooth? That is, how much does the "tooth fairy" give your kids per lost tooth. I have heard that it's up from 25 cents when I was a kid to $1.00 in 2013. But if Tex offers her kids 25 cents for finding something as valuable as a lost car remote, $1.00 seems high for a tooth. Moreover, in a large family with multiple kids simultaneously in their tooth-losing prime, $1.00 per tooth is cause for budgetary concern. Maybe we'll do 25 cents each or 3 for … [Read more...]