Showing posts from April, 2010

Sick Family

Please say a prayer for us. There are about 4.5 of us sick right now with various ills. Coughing, snotting, headaches, fevers...that sort of thing.

Thank God I'm relatively healthy and can take care of everyone. I have been getting fatigued by late afternoon, but that is normal/manageable.

There is a strong whistling wind today and a bright blue sky and when I went to pick up our milk, I noticed white caps on the Ohio River. Beautiful.

I just HAD to sew something!

So I got out my nail file and filed down the trouble spot on my bobbin casing.

Then I finished one of the nightgowns I had cut out. This machine is still doing weird things, and plenty of patience was needed to complete this little project, rethreading and jiggling on the tension issues, and I actually broke two needles back to back at one point when somehow the allignment was "off", and the needle was jamming into the metal plate, but all in all, it was nice to limp along and accomplish something.

I particularly like the kitty cat ribbon decoration that I used on the front. Found in a grab bag of hand-me-downs from a friend.

One of Those Days

Ever had one of those days that is simply lived inside your head? Where you are daydreaming so hard you can hardly get anything real done? I am having such a day today. Lots to think and dream about, and lots to do that I'm currently not doing, or that I could be doing. Both in the immediate future (as in, today) and in the grand scheme of things.

I don't want to lose my life in the immediacy of the necessities of life. Really, I don't. I need to learn to dream.

Impossible dreams? I'm possible dreams? Best to keep them to myself, doncha think? Otherwise they might dissipate in a cloud of foolishness.

There I go again, calling myself foolish. Why do I always do that?

At any rate, life's too short not to eat cake for breakfast, I've decided. I did that today. I think I'll go make some fudge, fold some towels and file the edge of my bobbin casing to see if a homegrown fix will do until my new sewing machine arrives. Love the fact that I can eat f…

" who remain and are suffering pain..."

Listen, you who remain and are suffering pain, hear what things I heard from the Lord of hosts, which the God of Israel declared to us. The vision of Edom: He calls to me from Seir. "Guard the battlements. I guard in the morning and at night. If you will inquire, inquire and dwell with me." In the forest on the road of Dedan you will lodge. Bring water to meet him who is thirsty, you inhabitants of the land of Teman; meet those who are fleeing with bread, because of the multitude who are fleeing and the multitude of those fallen in war." Isaiah 21: 10-15

I don't very often try to do any "Bible Study", but this really jumped out at me today. You see, one of the perpetual questions I have in my life is: "How, specifically, can I "live out the Gospel" when I have chronic fatigue issues and intermittent (but frequent) bouts of pain, especially when I over-do?

It seems on most days I can barely keep hearth and home running smoothly and t…

It's the Bobbin Casing, silly!

Today, I decided to officially declare my sewing machine to have bitten the dust. Or at least the bobbin casing to my rather wretched and ill-reviewed Singer 3820 150th Anniversary Edition sewing machine which I have had since 2001.

When I bought this machine, I thought it was a huge upgrade from whatever I had before, and I'm sure it was. But this is not a well-made machine. Numerous people in internetland have had the same exact trouble with this machine that I have: The bobbin casing gets pulled out of place and the needle then strikes straight into either the metal plate or the plastic edge of the bobbin casing.

This has happened enough times on my machine that there is a nick in the edge of the BC which is preventing the thread from smoothly flowing out of the bobbin to get caught up into the mechanism of the newly forming stitch.

Imagine thejoy of perpetually tangled threads. Such fun.

And I have lots of sewing to do: A Wedding dress, a rehearsal dinner dress and s…

Metabolism Miracle Phase 1 Chocolate Fudge

1/2 stick of butter
1/2 cup Z sweet sweetener
1/2 cup splenda
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup cream

Melt all these, stirring constantly in a double boiler, when melted, add:

4 squares of unsweetened baker's chocolate.

Stir until melted.

Pour into parchment paper lined pan or container (I used a flat rectangular tupperware container) and refrigerate until firm.

Lick bowls and spoons.

Some Pictures from This Week

Birthday Cake in Binary.
Lovely blooms!
Incredible bumblebee beauty on some flowering bushes.
The T-Rex and the Dinosaurs Alive! exhibit at the Louisville Zoo. Yes, we know it's not real. Really we do. I promise.
Here we are, fleeing for our lives from the dangerous T-Rex at the Louisville Zoo.
Fleeing from a T-Rex at the zoo.

Today I spent all day cleaning my home. I started in the bedroom, where I turned on corner into a permanent sewing area. I'm so excited! After living here a year and a half, the junky area (creeping pile) of Wes' is finally under control and we are using the space in our bedroom in a more efficient manner. Of course, I have not actually sat down for any sewing yet, since I'm over-tired from cleaning. But this makes me happy.

My youngest daughter took all the pictures of the zoo trip (including the incredible pink flowers). She's a very talented young photographer, at least compared to her mother.

Running thru my Head Today

Growth Spurt!

I remarked this morning how tall my son was getting. He decided to check himself against the marks on the wall that we made only a few weeks ago (3-14-2010).

Oh my goodness!

The boy has grown an INCH in the past five weeks!!!!!

So, not to be outdone, his younger sister had to check herself as well. They were the exact same height a month ago.

The girl, though, has grown an INCH AND A HALF in the past five weeks and is currently gloating that she's taller than her older brother.

I knew kids could shoot up at the ages of almost 11 and almost 12, but this just is a really really fast rate of growth.

Now I know where all that grocery money is going. I think I joined Costco just in time!

"The Old Grandlady"

A friend had this spinning wheel sitting in a box in her garage. It had been passed down from her great-grandmother (my friend is 60), who purchased this as a curio/decorative item in the early 1900's. This spinning wheel has seen some hard use, but not in my friend's family, therefore I conclude that it was well-used when she bought it.

Grooves have been worn in the fly wheel from where the freshly spun wool was winding onto the bobbin. The groove that the axel of the drive wheel sits in is worn down, perhaps a half-centimeter or more. The fly wheel is held in with leather parts, and the tension can be adjusted with a large wooden screw.

I want to dub this spinningwheel "The Old Grandlady" or something like it. She's a bit of a wool-eater, and we have not finished learning how to use her yet.

She is old. 1800's old, I think. I suspect it takes a lot of years of spinning to put those kinds of grooves in wood. I'm going to take her down to The Gr…

Today I've Been a Mommy for 16 Years!

B arrived after a miserable pitocin induced labor and no anesthetic until the anesthesiologist finally arrived from his afternoon golf game (my theory) to give me an epidural when I was in transition and ready to push-after screaming myself hoarse for a couple of hours. Pitocin contracitons and lamaze simply don't mesh. Consequently it took me 2 hours and 13 minutes of pushing and fear induced by the threat of foreceps to get her out of my rather beleaguered body.

B arrived with a head full of dark brown hair, at 9 pounds, 9 ounces. And I promptly passed out. After I came to, she was in the nursery for the requisite 4 hours. When that time was up, at 10:30 pm, I called and asked to room in with my baby, whom I'd not really even met yet. They told me I couldn't have her-Couldn't have her!until after pediatric rounds the following morning. !!!!! So my squeaky objections got me a half an hour with my daughter (the curse of having a high squeaky voice. I'm alwa…

Because You Asked

"Just as Orthodox Christians here on earth pray for one another and ask for one another's prayers, so they pray also for the faithful departed and ask the faithful departed to pray for them. Death cannot sever the bond of mutual love which links the members of the Church together"-Bishop Kalistos Ware

One of my readers, Elisabeth, asks:

It is a foreign concept to pray to saints for me. I grew up with little religion and have found myself and God through a non-denominational Protestant church. I guess I feel like the saints are sort of a 'pray to me first, don't go bothering the Man Upstairs' thing. Kind of like discouraging you from praying to the true Lord and Savior. Not that the saints aren't great, they are, but praying to them just seems, well, strange.

Do you know where the idea of praying to Saints came from? I'm intrigued and curious now. :-)

The idea of prayer to the saints comes directly down to Christ's victory over death, and what we Chr…

Thar She Blows!

We've had a HOT spring here in the Ohio River Valley of Kentucky this year. (I almost went and wrote "Central Kentucky" and then I remembered that I no longer live in the Bluegrass, which is a weird brain bender, but I digress.) More than once I've heard people remark that we skipped spring and went straight to summer. The fact that Eric had symptoms of heat exhaustion while we were visiting the zoo the other day does nothing but support our weather observations. It's APRIL...and the first half of April, at that. Egads.

Will it be a hot summer?

I predict that it will NOT be a hot summer, but rather a cool and rainy summer. Why, you ask?

Because a honkin' big volcanic eruption that is going on and on and on is spewing gobs of volcanic ash four miles high into the atmosphere, that's why.

But I could be wrong, you know. It could be that this is the wrong kind of volcano to cool things down on a global scale. It will be interesting to see what happ…

Help from that Great Cloud of Witnesses

Today I needed to refill Bethany's medicine tray. I opened up our lock box where we keep our medicine, and went to dole out the pills into their aloted spaces in the pill dispenser...and her Geodon was nowhere to be found. I could not find it.

So, I checked in the bedroom...not there. I looked around and under, and in varous places. Perhaps it had fallen into a dresser drawer. Nothing. I checked the medicine shelf in the kitchen, and nothing. I double checked where we stash our vitamins...nothing.

Then a friend of mine called, while I was hunting for the Geodon bottle and we prayed together. She prayed a prayer and asked St. Phanourios to pray for us. He is the saint of finding lost things.

As quickly as the prayer was said, the Geodon was found. Wes found it.

Glory to God who is mighty in His Saints and who heard our prayers and the mighty intercessions of Saint Phanourious.

For more about the Holy Great Martyr Phanourious, check out the OrthodoxWiki article.

I l…


Today I bought a membership to Costco.

I know this will save our family some money over the long haul, since they have some really good prices on Organic stuff. The more of that the better, although we certainly are not purists.

Ariana is ecstatic over the ginormous bag of frozen blueberries I bought home. Yum.

Things I'm eyeballing there: a small folding table that I might set up as a permanent sewing corner in my bedroom.

Mattresses. The memory foam kind. I'm jonesing pretty badly for one of those. Will have to save up.

I really want to take Wes there for a tour.

This week, I still need to go birthday shopping for B, make a cake and stick it in the freezer before Sunday and buy a wedding present for some friends. Sunday we are driving to the wedding and I won't have time to make B's birthday cake. I guess I can take some cake with us for B to eat at the wedding since the cake there is not likely to be gluten free. He he.

My oldest is turning 16 on Mo…

OK, I know I'm weird...BUT

I still need to write this. Today it's in the 80's here. I went to the zoo. My outfit: ankle length straight skirt (not the coolest, I was wishing I had on one of my swirly tiered skirts or a broomstick skirt instead of what I had on...but still), and and ill fitting tank top, pink hoodie (I had to wear my pink hoodie no matter what and I could not take it off due to only having ill fitting tank underneath), sneaks and a bandana to disguise my bad hair day.

I felt SO out of place. And I'll admit, I was too hot, thanks to skirt and jacket.

If I would have worn a tube top, I would have fit in.

If I had been wearing DAISY DUKES with my butt cheeks hanging out, I would have fit in.

If I had been wearing a micro mini skirt, I would have fit in.

If I had been wearing a spaghetti-strapped tank blouse, I would have fit in.

If my nearly strapless sun dress had hit me mid-thigh, I would have fit in.

If I had been wearing short shorts, and a skin tight t shirt, I would have fit in…

A Balanced Day: Ideas

I've been thinking today, as I've been busy working around my home, about what a good day looks like.

I think it's a matter of balance. Of finding joy in the little things.

One of the things I've had to learn since my energy levels are less than my life, is how to make choices and how to balance things out. It's hard on me when I let myself focus on all the things I don't get accomplished, or the million small messes around the home that I don't have energy to do anything about. It's easy for me to feel rather depressed, and this is on top of the general depression I think I have on-going. This second feeling might be described as a blend of self pity and lassitude. I think it is this sort of depression that might be a sin. The pouting kind of depression.

It is easy to go there when I don't get what I want...or when I don't have the energy to do what I want. But really, as pathetic as I do sound on here much of the time, I try not to go…

Raw Milk Symposium: Madison, Wisconsin

Isaiah 12

Well, first off, I was going to do a post entitled Isaiah 11, because that's gorgeous and christological and wonderful and prophetic and all that...but then, this morning in my reading I just kept right on going and came to Isaiah 12! Oh, such beauty, such hope and such joy. It's like reading a passage from the New Testament smack dab in the Old.

"And on that day, you will say, "I will bless You, O Lord. Although You were angry with me, You turned away Your anger and had mercy on me. Behold, God is my Savior and Lord. I will trust in Him and be saved by Him. I will not be afraid, for the Lord is my glory and my praise. He has become my salvation." You will draw water with gladness from the wells of salvation. In that day, you will say, "Praise the Lord; call upon His name. Declare His glorious things among the Gentiles and make mention that His name is exalted. Sing to the name of the Lord, for He has done great things. Declare this in all the e…

Sewing and Stuff

Today I finished making a simple summer nightie out of a full sized flat sheet. It was very simple, with a square neck yoke and fluttery short sleeves, gathers underneath the yoke. Since the fabric was white and boring, I did some embroidery on the front yoke.

I have more sheets that my friend was getting rid of, so soon I'll be sewing the girls some nighties as well, seeing as how we do not have any full sized beds and they need summer nighties.

I was awake at four something this morning, and around five, I decided to give up and get up. My back was aching and I could not get back to sleep. So, early this morning I got some reading done, which was nice. I finished _The Shack_. I have to admit I was very prejudiced against this book when I first started reading it but it turns out I really liked it, and I sort of needed to hear the message the book had to offer. I have my own Great Sadness to deal with, I know. In particular I like the line: "Tell him I am particular…

Fight Back Friday: O Lord, Save the Bees!

Scene: Evening Family Prayers

...Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal, have mercy on us, etc....

...Lord have mercy...

a kid of ours: "Lord have mercy on the people in our apartment complex, all the people in Louisville, the people at Boyscouts and AHG, the people at St. Michael's and the people at St. Athanasius."

All of us: Lord have mercy.

another kid of ours: "Lord, please let GMO's be made illegal, or at least make it so that they have to be labeled as such. And Lord, please help the Bee populations so they don't die out!"

All of us: Lord have mercy.

yet another kid: "And Lord, please help make abortions illegal forever and please save the Bees."

All of us: Lord have mercy. Amen.

Me to Wes afterwards: "Well, at least when we were kids all we had to worry about was Nuclear War!"This post is linked on Food Renegade's Fight Back Fridays.

This makes me so happy!

Soccer game. Fans. In Russia. In public: Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen!

The Countdown Begins

Well, we are starting to hit our home school stride again after Holy Week and Pascha. And the count down to the end of the year has begun, albeit quite unofficially I might add.

At least two, if not three, of my kids have come to me and said: "I only have X number of lessons left in X subject." The numbers usually break out to be about 6 weeks from now.

This is exciting. I think I'll have the kids make count down charts, so that we can really be motivated to "Git-R-Done".

The only subject we are really behind on is American History. Again, no one loves the curriculum (and I had such HIGH hopes, sigh). We need to do two lessons a week to get done in a timely manner on this one. And why are we behind? Well, this is the ONE subject we are doing as a group read-aloud (except for Bible/Religion), and so the blame falls at my very own too-busy feet. Big. Shuddering. Sigh.

And I thought of a good way to make a distinction today between teaching and schoolin…

Not Feeling Well

My back hurts today.

I've also been contemplating and wondering lately why I'm feeling so intellectually inastute. Almost like I've gotten duller, stupider, over the years. I certainly feel like I have less to say. I truly believe that my voice and opinion on things don't really matter in the grand scheme of the universe beyond how I show love to the people in my immediate vicinity.

Anything else, and I'm just a loud banging gong or some other noise maker. The world is noisy enough already.

Hope this day finds you all blessed, lovies. Jesus is risen from the dead. A painful back will also be swallowed up in His victory one day, so I really have nothing to complain about. ...especially since the wind chimes and breeze are so very very lovely.

It's a Small World After All

This weekend while I was visiting St. Athanasius' annual Pascha pic nic, I had fun playing a friend's guitar, while she played mandolin and alternately banjo, and another guy who, I assumed, was a friend of her's played banjo as well.

Well, they played, and I just followed along doing the chords-n-rhythm thing. Folk music. I had a blast.

It's been a while since I have regularly played my guitar and my finger tips are out of shape.(Note to self: Must remedy that situation.) I really wish I had a group of people to mess around with, musically, so that I can expand my knowledge and have such fun more often. Yes, I can pick up chords by ear, but all in all, I consider my musical abilities to be rather limited. Lackluster and untrained singing voice who hides in the back of choir and sings know the type. But I do SO enjoy it. I think me and music are a bit of a joke on God's part.

Well, today after liturgy I was introduced to this young man, and he…

Happy! Happy! Joy! Joy!

v: Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered; let those who hate Him flee from before His face!

Today, a sacred Pascha is revealed to us:
a new and holy Pascha,
a mystical Pascha,
a Pascha worthy of veneration,
a Pascha which is Christ the Redeemer,
a blameless Pascha,
a great Pascha,
a Pascha of the faithful,
a Pascha which has opened to us the gates of Paradise,//
a Pascha which sanctifies all the faithful.

v: As smoke vanishes so let them vanish; as wax melts before the fire!

Come from that scene, O women bearers of glad tidings,
and say to Zion:
“Receive from us the glad tidings of joy,
of Christ’s Resurrection!
Exult and be glad,
and rejoice, O Jerusalem,
seeing Christ the King, Who comes forth from the tomb//
like a bridegroom in procession!”

v: So the sinners will perish before the face of God. But let the righteous be glad!

The myrrh-bearing women,
at the break of dawn,
drew near to the tomb of the Life-giver.
There they found an Angel
sitting upon the stone.
He greeted them with these words:
“Why …

Holy Friday

Today he who hung the earth upon the waters is hung upon a Tree, (x3)

He who is King of the Angels is arrayed in a crown of thorns.

He who wraps the heaven in clouds is wrapped in mocking purple.

He who freed Adam in the Jordan receives a blow on the face.

The Bridegroom of the Church is transfixed with nails.

The Son of the Virgin is pierced by a lance,.

We worship your Sufferings, O Christ (x3)

Show us also your glorious Resurrection.

Autsim Awareness Month

April is Autism Awareness Month. I decided to make an Autism Awareness Egg. I know, it's less than perfect. Wax drips, and losing track of which color goes where. Not as much red as would have been good.