The View From Where I Sit

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We are guests at a lake house while our daughter is at camp nearby.  Next week I will be back to a reality like Tex's - I have to take 7 children along with me to a doctor appointment - but for right now my life actually is "picture perfect!" … [Read more...]

Work the List

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I have a lot to do this week, and by Tuesday I was handling myself well -- that was until MY DRYER CAUGHT FIRE!  Then the anxiety of that minor and embarrassing emergency (two trucks, the chief and the fire inspector, along with the village police) seemed to ooze into the rest of my life.  Are you like that?  I am, especially when I am hormonal.  My mother calls it "leaky emotions."  Anyway, I was starting to get worried about just about everything including, but not limited to, how I was … [Read more...]

My Mealtime Solutions for a busy family…in the Motherlode!

I am so excited to join the parenting conversation at The New York Times Motherlode blog. Do you make time for family dinner? Read what we do, and share your thoughts in the comments: parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/08/07/the-family-breakfast/   I am editing to add a link to a great website that I came across through the comments on that post, The Family Dinner Project.  Check it out!  I like the games and activities suggestions, we like to play games when we are waiting for a … [Read more...]

Worth It!

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I feel like you all have been with me on a crazy journey this summer as I planned to let my kids fully participate in our neighborhood swim team even though I was going to have a baby on the very first day of the season. That baby is one month old today, and we had the last regular meet. As you know from my last post, our routines fell apart, and it was a groan to the finish line, but we made it, and I am so happy for my children, and, frankly, proud of myself for getting through it all with a … [Read more...]

Cleaning House

As a family, we are heavily dependent on our systems.  I am not organized by nature and can barely find my own glasses when I wake up in the morning, so without good systems in place, this busy household of 9 people would fall apart very quickly.  An organized pantry means I can see in a second if we are almost out of peanut butter.  If the swim towel bin in the laundry room is empty I know that towels must be washed and dried before morning practice.  The children can get their own snacks … [Read more...]

The Fireworks Are For Him

Birthday Breakfast -- Red White and Blue Pancakes!

My husband was born on the Fourth of July.  As a small child, he really thought that the fireworks were for his birthday each year.  That leaves a lot to live up to in the celebrating department.  He is also an extrovert who loves to be surrounded by people and at the center of attention, so his birthday is his second favorite day of the year.  (His absolute favorite is Christmas Eve). Usually we are at the beach on the 4th, but this year, with a 2 week old, we decided we had better stay … [Read more...]

One Week Old

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My New Addition

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Our family welcomed our son, Teddy, on June 19.  I was induced but delivered naturally, thanks to a great team effort.  My husband held my hand through all of my contractions, two grandparents were with us and two were taking care of our six children at home, and we felt wonderfully supported.  We even got placed with a nurse who was able to keep up with Mr. MA's sense of humor and give as good as she got!  Grace abounded.  The next day, the older children came over to meet their brother, … [Read more...]

Love Them As Much As We Can

By now Kat is in the hospital, beginning to prepare for the birth of her dear baby Annie, who will be going to Heaven too soon.  Some friends are en route to Houston to be with the family.  I am at home, 39 weeks pregnant, doing my 6th load of laundry of the day. For the past 6 months or so I have known that these two babies would be born at about the same time, and I have been overwhelmed by feelings of guilt and unworthiness for getting what feels like the easier mother's journey.  In … [Read more...]

5 A Day for Summer

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For homeschoolers, it can be hard to decide when the school year begins and ends, but because we live in a way that is very interconnected with our school-schooled friends and neighbors, we have found that found that for our household it makes the most sense to begin in September and end in June each year. This does not mean, however, that there is no structure or learning going on in the summer.  In fact, I think that summer is a great opportunity to keep up skills, give a little bit of … [Read more...]