Showing posts from September, 2008


I totally threw this meal together last night, on the fly, and the kids liked it so much that they begged me to make more for lunch. I did. And when I went back for a small second helping, the skillet was licked clean. I named it "Hobo Skillet" but the girls re-named it "Deliciousness!"

-a hot stove with a cast iron skillet
-a couple of tablespoons of oil in skillet
-an onion, sliced, chopped, whatever you like to do with onions...
-a couple of tablespoons of minced garlic (I get those big jars at the store)
some potatoes. I might have used six last night. Today I used the rest...however many that was. Do them like the onions. I cut 'em in half lengthwise and then slice.
-a pound of ground meat (I used turkey because it's the cheapest, but lamb sure would be good. After my niece was in the hospital with e-coli, I avoid ground beef. During lent I might try a soy sausage in this meal.
-a cup (perhaps a skotch more) of water and a beef boullion cube (I hav…

A Day with Normal Teenage Girls

Whenever people who do not know our family hear that we have a teenage daughter, invariably the eyeballs roll. Perhaps an elbow nudge and a chuckle and a "Oh, I feel so sorry for you" will accompany the first reaction.

What is it that people are assuming? Attitude. Sass. An obsession with boys, or clothes, or makeup, or shopping, or being on the phone all the time, or behaving like Hanna Montana, lies, sneaking...

I've seen it all. On TV.

But for some reason, I wasn't like that (although I was a good bit more boy crazy than my daughters seem to be) and neither are my girls.

And I think they are normal. Let me explain. I contend that the above list, which no adult really likes, is not a normal way for young teenage girls to act. This is the "Lord of the Flies" meets "Mean Girls" meets...something socialized. But I don't think it's normal.

Somebody out there wants young teenage girls to become consumers and to want stuff and to b…

Do Not Love this World

Lately I've been reading and re-reading 1 John. I can't get enough. In some way, it seems as thought the Holy Apostle is writing those words to me personally.

In the second chapter, I read: "Do not love the world or the things in the world. If any one loves the world, love for the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life, is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world passes away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides for ever." 1 John 2: 15-17

I struggle with this "loving the world" thing. I'm rather materialistic in the sort of way that people who don't have a lot of nice shiny stuff are materialistic: Envy, desire, self pity, being satisfied or dis-satisfied with know the drill. I see what someone else has, or something on an advertisement, and I compare myself or my life or my stuff. This is sinful, destructive, and …

Gluten Free Casein Free Recipes

One of my readers expressed an interest in that Banana Bread Recipe, so I thought I'd point you all to my favorite GFCF recipe website, so that due credit would be given to those who actually developed the recipes.

Here's my first stop in Gluten Free Casein Free baking. Everything from this site that I've made has turned out very well:

Ok, so now you know!

Much not to blog about so I'll blog about food

I wish I could just pour out all that is happening ( or not happening) with our house. Suffice it to say, we are going to owe some huge amounts of money by the time all is said and done. Young families should NEVER buy a home with no down payment, even if the government says that they can, and gives them money to do so. God have mercy. It's happening all over the country and we are just part of a national wave. And we aren't even planning to buy another house. We just want to exit this whole Home ownership nightmare.

So, deep breath. This is like a boot camp to learn to live in the moment and to find joy in the little things. Because worry changes NOTHING but my mood.

So, lately my daughter has been trying the Gluten Free Casein Free diet again. It is good for her. So yesterday's offering, baked entirely by B herself, was GFCF honey sweetened banana bread with sunflower seeds. It is really really good. Banana bread is always better after spending the night in…

I do not recommend

taking a bite of chocolate cake and then accidentally inhaling the crumbs into your sinuses via the back of your throat.

Now, HOW did I manage that? I don't quite know. But I truly do NOT recommend it.

I was blowing crumbs out my nose for several minutes and now I have a sinus headache. Perhaps I should figure out how to do a saline flush.

So be careful eating crumbly cake! If you are like me, you will find ways to hurt yourself with it.

I Finally Did It

Today I picked up the phone and made that call I'd been putting off for months. Because making that call meant I could not bury my head in the sand any longer.
Who did I call? Well, since we are moving to Louisville, I called the Weisskopf Child Evaluation Center at the University of Louisville. What do they evaluate? Autism issues.

But, you say, you already have your dd's diagnosis. Why would you need to call them? Well, dear readers, I'm not talking about my daughter, I'm talking about my son. As the years and months have gone by, I've noticed that there's more than one "squeaky wheel" in the family. But since one wheel was squeaking the loudest, for a long time, that's the only wheel we heard.

But through a series of events, observations, conversations with other parents of spectrum kids, and reading, it's time for my to uncork my head from the sandpile and face facts:

-Big huge hairy social skills issues.
-Cluelessness about wha…

What Not To Do

If you have really really small ears, and earbud headphones will NOT stay in, please don't be tempted to tape them on with band-aids if you have hair longer than a recent shave.

Ask me how I know.

Ridiculous Commute

Yesterday, Wes' car broke down, and so he had AAA tow it back to Lexington to go in the shop here. Yes, that's right. Long distance towing service. Worth every penny.

So the net result was that the kids and I got to drive out and pick him up after work yesterday evening.

Qdoba was yummy. We'd never eaten there before, but were able to check the internet and find find some gluten free things on the menu for B to eat, so that was where we went for dinner.

Louisville got hit with hurricane force winds last Sunday and parts of the city are still without power (and many people have died from improper use of generators, God have mercy!), so we had to drive a bit until we found a Qdoba that was open. But we'd confirmed their menu already, so we were determined. (Having a family member on a special diet makes eating out rather challenging.) And since we don't eat out all that often, my list of places that are safe to go is rather small. One, right now. Must do mo…

From the Little Mountain - Large Trailer

I'm so excited and I really really hope nothing happens to prevent me from going to Hermitage of the Holy Cross Monastery on pilgrimage weekend.

I've been wanting to visit a monastery for ages, and I've never had the chance.

Enjoy the trailer. I've not yet watched the video, but hope to someday.

I recently saw a video about the work being done at St. Elizabeth Convent in Minsk, Belarus, and it was SO wonderful and inspiring. Made me weep for joy.

Barely Scratching the Surface

I've had several face to face conversations with people in the real world recently that makes me think I need to point out something.

This blog is NOT a good way to keep track of the ins and outs of my life or be on intimate terms of friendship or familiarity with me.

I would like to remind everyone who does read my blog (and I dearly appreciate you and the fact that you care enough about me or the things I write to read this stuff) of what all I DON'T blog about:

I don't blog very many details about my kids. I try very hard to maintain their privacy. Therefore, most of my motherly concerns, stresses and interactions are NOT a part of this blog.

I don't blog much about my marriage either. Same reasons.

I don't give lots of details about tons of personal stuff, even though it might seem like it. Trust me, there are oceans of stuff in my life that I'm not blogging about. To be reading this blog and feel like you are keeping up with a friendship with me is…

Please Pray for our house to sell

I know it hasn't been on the market all THAT long, but with the housing market the way it is, every prayer will help.

Yes, it will be so very very sad to leave our beloved parish, but we need this move. Gas is KILLING us, as is the commute.

Yesterday we had an open house, and so our family decided to get it all cleaned up and not be there. Let the realtor earn her keep.

So we had a lovely afternoon at the Hummel Planetarium at EKU, and then Pizza Hut, and a ferry ride across the Kentucky River to get to Vespers.

It was all a bit bittersweet, driving through the country knowing that within the next somewhen, we'd be living in another part of the State.

But please, pray for us, and with us and the saints. May God be glorified in all of this.

How Much Time

Would you give a realtor...

...who has supposedly had your house listed for eight days but has YET to post it on the internet????

...who recommends termite companies based not on who is competent, but apparently based on who is not as good at finding problems. ("Oh, no! You called Terminix and not the croney I recommended? Terminix ALWAYS finds stuff!!!!")

...who starts telephone conversations with you in mid sentence and then constantly goes off on scatterbrained rabbit trails about the other irons she has in the fire, instead of focusing on her business with you while she's talking to you.

...who fails repeatedly to explain what she's doing in lay terms and speaks in half thoughts?

...who leaves your place saying that an open house is not going to be necessary since everyone looks at the internet these days, and then calls you to schedule an open house.

Seriously, how much time would you give such a realtor before moving on to someone who can actually communicate ef…

Mary's Birthday

Our home altar, decorated for this feast day with special flowers. And since I took this picture with the computer (camera has battery issues today), the picture is actually a mirror image. The icon of Christ, in real life, is on the right hand side, where it belongs.

Normally this hand painted icon of the Theotokos holding Jesus is not front and center, but today I moved it there, and will leave it up for a while.
At least until the flowers give out.

This, cut and pasted from the
OCA website :

The Nativity of Our Most Holy Lady Theotokos and Ever Virgin Mary: The Most Holy Virgin Mary was born at a time when people had reached such a degree of moral decay that it seemed altogether impossible to restore them. People often said that God must come into the world to restore faith and not permit the ruin of mankind.

The Son of God chose to take on human nature for the salvation of mankind, and chose as His Mother the All-Pure Virgin Mary, who alone was worthy to give birth to the S…

Inside, Outside, Upside Down!

I was having coffee with a beloved sister in Christ the other day, and she said something in the course of our conversation that really made me start to think. It wasn't so much that she said it, but that it's been said and heard so many times by so many of us, that it could have been anyone who said this thing.

Common parlance.

"The Lord blessed my parents and so now we are using the money for...."

It seems that so often, the Lord's blessing is equated with financial blessing.

And I"m not going to argue that this is not a form of blessing, but the words of Jesus do come to mind about the eye of a needle and how difficult it is for a rich man (and by that, I think we can easily say most of us Americans! no matter how pettily we compare ourselves with one another) to enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.

I've been asking St. Xenia of Petersburg for her prayers lately, because she's a good one who prays for people who need jobs or who need to sell their…

Blessed be the Name of the Lord

I'm tired of the shoulds and oughts.

The idea that it is my faith or my attitude that will determine my success. Job was a man of great faith, and he had everything ripped from him. Through it all his mantra: The Lord gives, the Lord takes away. Blessed by the Name of the Lord. It was his lying and deluded friends who were convinced that somehow Job had sinned and therefore had "the blessing removed from his life."

It is not my lack of faith that is causing my daughter's mental illness. Jesus taught us to pray "Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." So, how is praying this prayer a lack of faith? If He wills it, He will heal her.

It is not my lack of faith or my bad attitude that causes my fibromyalgia, either. I'm not going to sit around and wish for something that God is clearly saying "no" to. I refuse to live my life waiting for God to perform like a marionette puppet to my desires based upon my suppo…


Our upstairs, now that all the repair work, painting and new carpet are finished, done and installed, is FANTASTIC looking, as far as it goes.

It almost makes me think it might be worth it to throw some paint on the walls downstairs. If I had the energy, I would. It might hurt more than it helps, though, considering my profound lack of painting experience. I might ask some friends for help. Who knows? The thought of doing that much makes me want to curl up in a little ball, since I barely make it through the normal work of each day as it is.

Speaking of the upstairs, we listed our house yesterday. Apparently, there are strict rules on how houses get listed. If the upstairs, which was an attic at some point but got finished out and is now two rooms with sloped ceilings going down to meet three feet high walls, were counted, it would be a 1500 square foot house. But because the side walls go down to three feet, we can't list the upstairs as two rooms, or count the square foo…

Catching Up

We put our house on the market today. Hopefully it will SELL and fast. It's priced to move, and sell "As Is". God have mercy and grant us this prayer!

Also, catching up on paper grading is exhausting!

OK, that's all I have to offer blog-land today.

Happy Labor Day. I've been working way too hard, and I'm tired.