Monday, November 20, 2017

Fur Elise: Performed by Hannah

Hannah has been really working on this song.  She is very proud of it, and I love how a good song can make a child really enjoying practicing the piano.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Other than Mothering

Although I don't do much other than "Mothering" I do sometimes steal a moment or two away to do something I love.  I made this saint doll for Brian's newest godson for his (late) baptism gift.  I made him a soccer hat (they are a big soccer family) for his birth gift, but I think I forgot to take a picture of that.  He is named after St. Maximilian Kolbe and so I made him that saint and picked a beautiful quote from him for the back.  I haven't made these in a while, but now I'm already in the middle of my second one, and Drew and Judah have requested one as well.

One night I went to a Ladies Night Out with women from my church group.  It was a "Wine Tasting and Pasta Making" event.  We were taught how to make pasta by a chef trained in Bologna, Italy.  He was American and owns a shop called Ciao in Landstuhl.  De Vine (you only get the joke in this name if you know the German word for wine is die Wein, pronounced de vine) is a wine shop across the street from Ciao and has a large room upstairs perfect for pasta making in a large group.  It was a long even with some down time when the dough needs to rest or dry which is when we were able to sample the Italian appetizers.  The wine tasting was interspersed throughout the evening and led by the son of the founder of De Vine.

I don't know why this picture flipped upside down when I uploaded it, but oh well!  This was my appetizer plate.

This is how we took it home to cook it the next day.

And my dinner the next night!  Fresh pasta is amazing!

I have also taken a shot at Zentangle Art.  The girls took a free class at the library in the summer and I was immediately drawn to it.  I love patterns and doodling.  My godson's sister asked me to draw her a swan, and if you knew this girl you'd understand why I dropped all my other projects to fulfill her request.  She's a sweetie.  I started with the outline of a real swan and then decided to go a different route and Zentangle the swan.  I drew everything inside the swan in pen, but I had a couple pencil drafts of the big swan first.

It's really on white paper, but the poor lighting in our house made it look yellowish in this picture.
Genevieve has been drawing more lately too.  She drew this owl for a friend as well.  I am very proud of her.  She seems to have it in her head that Hannah is the artist of the family, but I think she's got her fair share of talent.  Looks like we may have several artists in this family.

I have also become fond of hand lettering.  I have been making quotes to post around the house.  I am currently working on a canvas for each of my children with a quote from a classic book, Winnie-the-Pooh, Peter Pan, A Single Shard, Jane Eyre, etc.  I will have to really work hard to get all the hand made gifts ready before Christmas.

An example of the quick hand lettered quotes from saints that I've been posting all over the house. 

Finally, I went on a Catholic retreat.  Brian stayed home with the kids (or rather took the kids all over the place without me).  It was good to get away, spend time with friends, go to daily Mass, and get lots of extra uninterrupted prayer time.  It was in the Netherlands (barely across the border) at the Rolduc Abbey.

This was right across from my room.  It made me happy!
 I was supposed to have a roommate assigned, but I never met her. Her stuff was in the room once when I went to grab something and then it was gone the next time.  I never did meet her or find out why she didn't stay.
Basement Bar- for hanging out in the evenings after the scheduled events were completed

A beautiful chapel in the Abbey!

Courtyard View from my window

That's all, Folks!

Friday, November 3, 2017

Pumpkin Farm Field Trip

We did this same field trip last year, but the kids all love it and they all get to pick out a pumpkin as big as they can carry as a free gift with admission.  Judah was less afraid of the animals this year, but he was still keeping his distance from the cattle.

Dairy Cows (Apparently, Judah is still wearing the same rain coat this year, but last year I remembered the galoshes too.)
 Here's an interesting fact, they let their dairy cows choose when they want to be milked.  They come up to the gate near the machine when they are  ready.  I guess they get them to cooperate by giving them a tasty treat while they get milked.  So funny!

Another funny thing is that they have air conditioning units in the barns for the cows.  A friend and I turned to each other with our mouths open because German people don't even have air conditioning in their homes.

Drew and one of his good friends

Petting the horses

Petting a chicken

We rode on a hay ride hitched up to a tractor down the road to the pumpkin patch.  Most of the pumpkins were too big, so Bobby, Judah, and I really had to search for reasonably small pumpkins for them.


Group photo
 It was so very super muddy in the pumpkin patch that most of the kids were covered in mud from slipping in it or from carrying their muddy pumpkin.  All our feet were wet because some crazy mom didn't remember to wear our galoshes this time.  I stripped the little boys form the waist down before letting them in my van.  The pile of muddy clothes, that I had fully intended to get right into the washing machine, was so big and so gross that I just couldn't do it.  I cleaned all the shoes right away, but the pile of muddy clothes sat there for 5 days before I could bring myself to deal with it.

Before we left they opened up their little store and we had cake and hot cider.  Always a fun and memorable day at the farm.

Hot cider and cake

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Chestnut Festival

The very next weekend after our visitors left we met some friends at the Chestnut festival (about an hour from our house) after Mass on Sunday.  The children all have so much more fun at these things when there are friends to talk to.  

We ate amazing food, chestnut bratwurst, chestnut knodel (giant dumplings) with cream sauce, chestnut ice cream, and chestnut flammkuchen.  I couldn't even tell you which was the best!

Another fun festival in Germany!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

The Boss Baby

Somehow this post was written after getting back from the states, but I forgot to post it.

I have a theory.

I watched Boss Baby on the plane ride with Bobby, and I now have a theory that he is the "Boss Baby."  He is super cute and seriously running this house.  We would all do just about anything he asks because he is so stinkin' adorable.  Here are my supporting facts for my theory.

Supporting Fact #1
Bobby started saying, "Turn your face,"  when he wanted you to listen to him.  It was sometimes accompanied with actually turning your face with his cute tiny hands.  How can one resist such a request?

Supporting Fact #2
"I'm busy doin' som-in'" is another common phrase from him.  It sounds so grown up to be coming out of his cute mouth.  That one simple phrase has us "Ooohing and Aaahing" over him and we forget whatever it was we asked him to do.

Supporting Fact #3
Hannah wanted to carry him somewhere and get him out of his car seat and he wouldn't let her.  He insisted that "Mommy get me."  She said teasingly, "Shame on you!" with a wag of her finger and he replied without missing a beat, "No!  Shame on YOU!"  Laughter filled the van and he now loves to say, "Shame on you!" to wrap us all tighter and tighter around his little finger.  No wonder Judah has been throwing such fits!  His dethronement has been rather rough with such tough competition.  The big kids always favor the baby, but this may be a bit excessive.  It doesn't help that Judah's new plan to get negative attention has left him looking rather un-cute.