Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Five minutes after you made your child sit on the potty and try to poop and immediately after you turn on the front loader washing machine and it fills up, your child comes in with nasty stuff dripping down one leg and pronounces that the poop finally came out -- in his underwear.

Monday, June 28, 2010


Seven year old bursts in: Mom, I've decided I don't want to become a nun.
Me: Okay. You have a little while to decide these things. Why not?
Seven year old: I don't want to have to wear the same thing every day.

After reading, Hello Baby (one of my favorite books on the subject of new siblings because the big sibling doesn't throw tantrums, it shows stages of in utero development and the mom breastfeeds) to my three year old, I asked him if he would like to hold the new baby when it arrived.
With a sour look on his face: NO!
Me: Would you like to kiss the baby?
Three year old: NO!
Me: When the baby is bigger, you are going to get to teach it how to play with Duplos.
Three year old: NO! I don't want to. I'm going to take it and turn it into an alien.
Maybe I need to read one of those books about dealing with new siblings and tantrums!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Friday Quick Takes -- Getting Ready for #6 edition


A few weeks ago, I posted a list of things I need to do to get ready for the wee one, who nerdily enough has been nicknamed Kubuntu by my husband. (I think he may like his Linux-running computer a little too much). I'm making progress on crossing things off.


I found the new infant carseat I had been considering on Zulily for about half price. I also happened upon a lady on my neighborhood listserv selling an Ergo carrier for less than half-price. That latter wasn't a need. I have two Maya Wraps, a Baby Bjorn, a pouch and a nice Kelty baby backpack, so baby carriers abound in our house -- but I have kind of had Ergo envy since testing a friend's a year ago.

So baby stuff is acquired, although I need to still get a few little diapers and some lanolin. I think I've decided upon a seating chart for all the carseats in the car.


I got into the attic (it sure is hot in there!) and pulled out baby clothes -- even finding our family going home outfit. I didn't think when our ten year old wore a particular outfit home that I would be using it some day on a sixth baby almost eleven years later.

I haven't figured out where to store the baby clothes yet. I probably need to leave that decision to my interior decorator and organizer-in-chief (aka my husband). Right now the baby clothes are sitting in a box in my room and probably will live there for at least a while.


I have not done a thing towards packing a hospital bag or making arrangements for the kids. Since I seem to always go late, packing doesn't seem like a priority. The kids are a priority, but I'm not sure where to turn. Most of my friends have a lot of kids themselves and don't live close by. The teenagers either don't drive or they have jobs. My sister-in-law and family have always watched the kids in the past, but due to issues related to our conversion to Catholicism, she is not an option any longer. This is the thing that is currently bugging me most.


I have been plugging away on homeschool plans and such things though. I'm not entirely done, but I'm making progress.


I've been trying to keep the house tidy, keep up with produce growing in the garden and putting some meals and other stuff into the freezer. Ladies from church will bring meals for a week or two, but the longer I can stretch that out the better.


And my body is physically getting ready. I had a check up yesterday -- the wee one is head down and I am starting to dilate and efface, although I know from personal experience that I do both well before my due date, so I can't work up too much excitement, but it is always nice to know things are moving in the right direction.

At this point, although not everything is done, I would be more than happy to be unpregnant again just as soon as possible.

More Quick Takes to be found at Jen's place.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Large, Gigantic, Enormous, etc.

Some women do not get extra super-sized whilst pregnant. I am not one of those women.

Here's a current photo -- only a month or so to go.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Art Trading Card Swap -- The Results

It was an exciting morning on Monday, when I opened the mailbox and found our envelopes containing the return art trading cards from the swap the three oldest kids and I participated in in May.

Here is what arrived in our envelopes:

For the five year old:

For the seven year old:

For the 10 year old:

And mine:

Now we're enjoying seeing some of our pictures show up on other blogs and planning which saints we'll draw for the next swap in November.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Drudgery? Perhaps. Degrading?

This morning I've run across a lot of buzz over a story about kids having to clean school bathrooms as punishment. While one mother interviewed for the story was fine with it (although her child was, of course, not so happy), another mother was quoted as saying, "It's degrading."
Degrading? Janitorial work is degrading? Who cleans their bathrooms at home? I hate cleaning more than most people. I avoid it. I put it off far too long and try hard to palm it off on my husband or children, but I've never felt degraded or that the work was beneath me when I finally could ignore the call of the nasty potty any longer.
Perhaps more manual labor and working punishments are what children in general need. Learning how to properly clean a bathroom and being reminded that none of us are really too good for such work cannot be a bad thing really.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Animated Movies

Over at First Things on Friday they were talking about animated films. I think their list of the best animated films of all time is pretty good. And seeing as how my brain is pretty full these days, I thought I'd snag their list of pretty much all the films and see how many I'd watched. How many have you seen?


[X] Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (1937)
[X] Fantasia (1940)
[X] Pinocchio (1940)
[X] Dumbo (1941)
[X] Bambi (1942)
[X] Song of the South (1946)
[X] Cinderella (1950)
[X] Alice in Wonderland (1951)
[X] Peter Pan (1953)
[X] Lady and the Tramp (1955)
[X] Sleeping Beauty (1959)
[X] 101 Dalmatians (1961)
[X] Mary Poppins (1964)


[X] The Sword In The Stone (1963)
[X] The Jungle Book (1967)
[X] The Aristocats (1970)
[X] Bedknobs and Broomsticks [1971]
[X] Robin Hood (1973)
[?] The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977)
[X] Pete’s Dragon (1977)
[X] The Rescuers (1977)
[X] The Fox and the Hound (1981)
[X] The Black Cauldron (1985)
[X] The Great Mouse Detective (1986)
[ ] Oliver and Company (1986)


[X] Beauty and the Beast (1991)
[ ] The Rescuers Down Under (1990)
[X] Aladdin (1992)
[X] The Lion King (1994)
[ ] A Goofy Movie (1995)
[ ] Hercules (1997)
[X] The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1996)
[X] The Little Mermaid (1989)
[ ] Mulan (1998)
[X] Pocahontas (1995)
[X] Tarzan (1999)


[X] Dinosaur (2000)
[ ] Fantasia 2000 (2000)
[X] The Emperor’s New Groove (2000)
[ ] Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001)
[ ] Lilo & Stitch (2002)
[ ] Treasure Planet (2002)
[ ] Brother Bear (2003)
[ ] Home on the Range (2004)
[ ] Chicken Little (2005)
[ ] Meet the Robinsons (2007)
[ ] Bolt (2008)
[ ] The Princess and the Frog (2009)


[X] Toy Story (1995)
[ ] A Bug’s Life (1998)
[X] Toy Story 2 (1999)
[X] Monsters Inc. (2001)
[X] Finding Nemo (2003)
[X] The Incredibles (2004)
[X] Cars (2006)
[X] Ratatouille (2007)
[ ] Wall-E (2008)
[X] Up (2009)


[X] The Secret of NIMH (1982)
[X] An American Tail (1986)
[ ] The Land Before Time (1988)
[ ] All Dogs Go to Heaven (1989)
[ ] An American Tail: Fievel Goes West (1991)
[ ] Rock-a-Doodle (1991)
[ ] A Troll in Central Park (1994)
[ ] Anastasia (1997)
[ ] The Pebble and the Penguin (1995)
[ ] Thumbelina (1994)
[ ] Titan AE (2000)


[ ] The Adventures of Mark Twain (1986)
[ ] The Puppetoon Movie (1987)
[ ] The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
[X] James and the Giant Peach (1996)
[ ] Chicken Run (2000)
[ ] Corpse Bride (2005)
[X] Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit (2005)
[ ] Coraline (2009)


[ ] Antz (1998)
[X] Shrek (2001)
[X] Shrek 2 (2004)
[X] The Polar Express (2004)
[ ] Madagascar (2005)
[ ] Happy Feet (2006)
[ ] Monster House (2006)
[ ] Over the Hedge (2006)
[ ] Beowulf (2007)
[X] Shrek The Third (2007)
[ ] Kung Fu Panda (2008)
[ ] Monsters vs. Aliens (2009)
[ ] How to Train Your Dragon (2010)
[ ] Shrek Forever After (2010)


[ ] Fritz the Cat (1972)
[ ] Street Fight (Coonskin) (1975)
[ ] American Pop (1981)
[ ] Heavy Metal (1981)
[ ] Hey Good Lookin’ (1982)
[ ] Cool World (1992)
[ ] Beavis & Butthead Do America (1996)
[ ] South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut (1999)
[ ] Heavy Metal 2000 (2000)
[ ] Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (2001)
[ ] Waking Life (2001)
[ ] The Animatrix (2003)
[ ] Lady Death (2004)
[ ] Final Fantasy: Advent Children (2005)
[ ] A Scanner Darkly (2006)


[ ?] Animal Farm (1954)
[X] Charlotte’s Web (1973)
[X] The Hobbit (1977)
[X] Lord of the Rings (1978)
[ ] Ringing Bell (1978)
[ ] Animalympics (1980)
[ ] Pink Floyd’s The Wall (1982)
[ ] Rock & Rule (1983)
[X] Care Bears: The Movie (1985)
[ ] He-Man & She-Ra: The Secret of the Sword (1985)
[ ] Starchaser: The Legend of Orin (1985)
[ ] Gobots: Battle of the Rock Lords (1986)
[ ] My Little Pony: The Movie (1986)
[ ] Transformers: The Movie (1986)
[ ] G.I. Joe: The Movie (1987)
[ ] Bravestarr: The Movie (1988)
[ ] The Brave Little Toaster (1988)
[X] Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)
[ ] Fern Gully (1992)
[ ] Little Nemo: Adventures in Slumberland (1992)
[ ] The Swan Princess (1994)
[X] Balto (1995)
[X] Space Jam (1996)
[ ] Cats Don’t Dance (1997)
[ ] The Prince of Egypt (1998)
[ ] Wizards (1977)
[ ] The Iron Giant (1999)
[ ] Quest For Camelot (1999)
[ ] The Road to El Dorado (2000)
[ ] Powerpuff Girls: The Movie (2002)
[ ] Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron (2002)
[ ] Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon The Movie (2007)
[ ] Superman: Doomsday (2007)
[ ] Justice League: The New Frontier (2008)
[ ] Wonder Woman (2009)
[ ] Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker
[ ] Batman: Mask of the Phantasm


[ ] Arabian Knight
[ ] Back to Gaya
[X] Yellow Submarine (1968)
[ ] Watership Down (1978)
[ ] The Last Unicorn (1982)
[ ] Light Years (1988)
[ ] When the Wind Blows (1988)
[X] The Triplets of Belleville (2003)
[ ] Persepolis (2007)
[ ] Planet 51 (2009)
[ ] Waltz With Bashir (2008)


[ ] Lupin III: The Castle of Cagliostro (1979)
[ ] Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984)
[ ] Laputa: Castle in the Sky (1986)
[ ] Grave of the Fireflies (1988)
[X] Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989)
[ ] Only Yesterday (1991)
[ ] Porco Rosso (1992)
[ ] My Neighbor Totoro (1993)
[ ] Pom Poko (Tanuki War) (1994)
[ ] Whisper of the Heart (1995)
[ ] My Neighbors The Yamadas (1999)
[ ] Princess Mononoke (1999)
[ ] The Cat Returns (2002)
[ ] Spirited Away (2002)
[ ] Howl’s Moving Castle (2004)
[ ] Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea (2009)
[ ] Panda! Go Panda!
[ ] Tales from Earthsea
[ ] Horus, Prince of the Sun


[ ] Perfect Blue (1999)
[ ] Millennium Actress (2001)
[ ] Tokyo Godfathers (2003)
[ ] Paprika (2006)


[ ] She and Her Cat (1999)
[ ] Voices of a Distant Star (2001)
[ ] The Place Promised in Our Early Days (2004)
[ ] 5 Centimeters per Second (2007)


[ ] Galay Epress 999 (1979)
[ ] Arcadia of My Youth (U.S. Title – Vengeance of the Space Pirate) (1982)
[ ] Space Adventure Cobra (1982)
[ ] The Professional: Golgo 13 (1983)
[ ] Unico and the Island of Magic (1983)
[ ] Lensman (1984)
[ ] Macross: Do You Remember Love (U.S. Title – Clash of the Bionoids) (1984)
[ ] The Dagger of Kamui (U.S. Title – Revenge of the Ninja Warrior) (1985)
[ ] Vampire Hunter D (1985)
[ ] Fist of the North Star (1986)
[ ] Neo-Tokyo (1986)
[ ] Project A-ko (1986)
[ ] Dirty Pair: Project Eden (1987)
[ ] Urotsukidoji: The Movie (1987)
[ ] Robot Carnival (1987)
[ ] Wings of Honneamise: Royal Space Force (1987)
[ ] Akira (1989)
[ ] Patlabor the Movie (1989)
[ ] Silent Möbius (1991)
[ ] Ninja Scroll (1993)
[ ] Ghost in the Shell (1996)
[ ] End of Evangelion (1997)
[ ] Gundam Wing: Endless Waltz (1998)
[ ] Vampire Hunter D Bloodlust (2000)
[ ] Metropolis (2001)
[ ] Cowboy Bebop: The Movie (2003)
[ ] Appleseed (2004)
[ ] Steamboy (2004)
[ ] Robotech: The Shadow Chronicle (2006)
[ ] The Girl Who Leapt Through Time (2006)
[ ] Appleseed: E Machina (2007)
[ ] Sword of the Stranger (2007)
[ ] Origin: Spirits Of The Past


[ ] The Chipmunk Adventure (1987)
[ ] Feli the Cat: The Movie (1988)
[ ] We’re Back! A Dinosaur’s Story (1993)
[ ] The Rugrats Movie (1998)
[ ] Pokemon: The First Movie (1999)
[ ] Jimmy Neutron: Boy Genius (2001)
[X] Ice Age (2002)
[ ] Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas (2003)
[ ] Shark Tale (2004)
[ ] The Spongebob Squarepants Movie (2004)
[X] Hoodwinked (2005)
[ ] Valiant (2005)
[ ] The Ant Bully (2006)
[ ] Flushed Away (2006)
[X] Ice Age: The Meltdown (2006)
[ ] Open Season (2006)
[ ] Bee Movie (2007)
[ ] The Simpsons Movie (2007)
[ ] Happily N’Ever After (2007)
[ ] Horton Hears a Who (2008)
[ ] Space Chimps (2008)
[ ] Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa (2008)
[ ] The Tale of Despereaux (2008)
[ ] 9 (2009)
[ ] Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs (2009)
[ ] Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (2009)
[ ] Robots

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


I planned ahead yesterday and had breakfast all ready to pull out and put on the table when we got up. One might say it had more sugar than was strictly necessary, but it was yummy and my kids think I was feeding them ice cream. Really it was frozen fruit salad and chocolate banana bread, but I'm not going to argue with them.

If you haven't had a frozen fruit salad, it's a lovely Southern tea room recipe that's easy to make and works just as well for breakfast on a hot morning as it does for a fancy luncheon.

Recipes? Sure.

Marbled-Chocolate Banana Bread
makes 2 loaves (can be halved)

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup rolled oats (I use old fashioned ones)
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 3/4 cup sugar (I generally use Turbinado for this)
1/2 cup butter, softened
3 cups mashed ripe banana (about 6 bananas)
4 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cup plain yogurt (any variety from no fat to full fat)
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

2. Combine flours, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk.

3. Place sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add banana, eggs, vanilla and yogurt; beat until blended. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist.

4. Place chocolate chips in a medium microwave-safe bowl, and microwave on HIGH for 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Cool for a few seconds. Add 1 cup of batter to chocolate, stirring until well-combined. Spoon chocolate batter alternately with plain batter into a 8 1/2 x 4 1/2-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray. Swirl batters together with a knife. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 5 minutes (I start checking at about 45 minutes because the baking time seems highly variable) or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool ten minutes in the pan on a wire wrack, remove from pan and cool completely.

Frozen Fruit Salad

1 8-ounce package softened cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
juice from one lemon
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups sour cream
1 cup seedless grapes, sliced
2 cups of any mixture of blueberries, strawberries and raspberries, sliced (if necessary)
2 cups chopped peaches or apricots

In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar, lemon juice, salt and sour cream. Very gently stir in fruit. Spoon mixture into muffin tins (I prefer to make mini-muffin sized salads) lined with paper liners (unless, like me you have a silicone muffin pan, in which case the frozen salads will pop right out without paper liners) or you can use a 13"x9" casserole dish. Freeze hard (takes at least a few hours, I always just leave them overnight). Store leftovers in the freezer in a sealed container.

What are your favorite recipes for busy summer mornings when you don't want anything hot?

Monday, June 07, 2010

What Not to Do with Gin

I'm rather fond of a summertime gin and tonic. Obviously, not at the moment, but in those seemingly rare instances when I'm not pregnant, sitting on the porch swing sipping a gin and tonic on a sultry summer evening is a quite pleasant thing to do.

About the only thing I really like gin for is a gin and tonic, although a martini made with sweet vermouth isn't bad. I definitely draw the line way before I get anywhere near this drink.

Strangely Difficult

My three oldest children are off all week at Totus Tuus, which is sort of like day camp VBS for Catholic kids. I am left home with a three year old and an almost two year old, who are both incensed that they aren't old enough to go along.

Oddly enough, without my helpers, these two are in some ways harder to manage by themselves than the whole lot of them is. These two are most likely to run and no one else is around to grab them. And I hadn't realized how much I miss the conversations with the bigger kids (as long as they aren't devolving into arguments between them).

Also, this getting up, feeding everyone breakfast, making lunches and running out the door to get somewhere? This is why I don't do school. A week of it may kill me.

Friday, June 04, 2010


Last week, not only did the three year old get to go to the ER, but on Friday night, so did I. Although, I could explain in detail all the things that I don't think were well done that night in the L&D triage area (never show up during a shift change, if you can help it), I probably just got dehydrated and started contracting. However, it didn't feel like contractions -- it was just a constant unbearable pain in my back and right side. All seems to be fine now though.


Going to the hospital the other night made me realize that although these last few weeks (or months) feel like forever, that it really won't be that long. Things I must do before a baby arrives:

  1. Order a new infant carseat. Any suggestions?
  2. Pull out at least a few infant clothes in both girl and boy colors.
  3. Figure out the dresser situation, as my almost 2 year old's clothes are in the dresser to be used by the baby, and we don't really have room to add any more dressers.
  4. Pack some sort hospital bag.
  5. Find someone to watch the kids while I'm at the hospital.
  6. Finish up my lesson planning for school next year. The booklists are planned, but I have a lot more to do before I am prepared for the year.
  7. Cleaning house would be a nice bonus.


Tomorrow morning, I'm headed up to Kentucky with a couple of my friends to go to this homeschooling conference. It's a last minute decision to go, but I hope it will be fun. I've never been to a homeschooling conference of any sort before.


When I was in the ER on a Friday night, I got the pleasure of flipping through many cable channels and realizing there really is nothing worth watching. So, instead until my husband got back from dropping the kidlets off with a friend, I watched Say Yes to the Dress. (After my husband arrived, I read for a while and then we watched basketball.) But I was much more fascinated by the junk TV and by people's wedding dress budgets.

First, I can't imagine flying to NYC just to look for a wedding dress. Second, the "budget" brides were planning to spend more on their dresses alone than we spent on our wedding. Third, there was one woman who bought a $11,000 dress. Fourth, a lot of the dresses were ugly as sin and I only saw one that had any sort of sleeve at all -- almost everything was strapless and the rest had spaghetti straps. Fifth, looking hot in your wedding dress should not be a requirement. Looking hot for your groom afterward is fine, but does one really need to advertise to her guests that despite the white dress their is nothing virginal about the bride?


Do you ever begin to think you should have chosen different names for some of your children? My three year old should have been named Ivan (as in "the Terrible") and my almost two year old loves shoes so much, Imelda would have been a much better choice. Her first word was "shoo-shoo" and she tries on various all day long, almost never will go unshod, and even brings me shoes to put on if I am barefoot.


Strawberry season in the garden is already over. Next year I need to put in some everbearing strawberries. Until then, though, no more fresh garden strawberries, but the black raspberries are in full production mode and the red everbearing raspberries are also gearing up. Should all go well, it looks like zucchini and yellow squash should be ready to pick next week.

We won't discuss the state of my weed flower beds. Sigh.


One last pregnancy related thought -- one knows in theory that one is getting huge, but when people start asking when you are due and you say, "July" and they say, "Oh not long." and then you say, "The end of July or probably August." And all they can manage is a surprised, "Ooh!" Then you know you are huge. I've started telling everyone that first I get big and then I get impossibly big. I think I'm somewhere between those two. But less than two months until my due date (not that I ever go early, sigh).

More Quick Takes to be found at Jen's place.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

First Grade Booklist for 2010-2011

It occurred to me that I forgot to post my booklist for the first grader when I posted the others for third and fifth grade. Forgetting to post things is the story of how I blog. But now, without further ado, I present the first grade list:

Language Arts:





Art History:



There will be a lot of overlap with my third grader, which should make things a little less crazy around here. At least, I hope so.

Looking for a third grade list? Go here.

Looking for a fifth grade list? Go here.

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