Happy 15 years…

Today is our 15th Anniversary! We have been so blessed over the years. I have always loved my wedding band. To this day I still look at it and remember the night he asked me to be his wife… I love you John!


Fat days leading up to Lent

Well.. Fat Tuesday really got us thinking we were in Fat mode a whole week ahead of Fat Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.
Last week we started off with Fat Tuesday a week ahead M&M’s birthday Feb 9th and her yummy Italian Cream Cake, Fat Wednesday Leftover Italian cream Cake followed by a feast day, Fat Thursday Feb 11th with Rice Krispie Grotto treats, followed into the Valentine’s weekend mode…
of Fat Friday Homemade Chocolate Souffles served with sifted Powdered Sugar.
We celebrated dad’s birthday early on Saturday night since his birthday falls on Ash Wednesday. We enjoyed
Fat Saturday Homemade Coca-Cola Cake,
Then there was Valentine’s Day … I just had to try my hand at making homemade Sea Salt Truffles Fat Sunday

Now just because this is adorable, I am adding a picture showing a few of our children snuggled next to their big brother near the fire reading the story St Valentine.
And because more happens in our house than just food and Saints and crafts.. here is a clone who made her way into my home on Valentine’s day…

Now that it is Monday, we knew dad would be off work in honor of President’s Day.. so our plans are to smoke ribs all day and enjoy them tonight Fat Mondayand then end with a bang on Fat Tuesday with Margarita’s and grilled Salmon Tacos!! And while we’re at it, I’ll just have to make something sweet to finish it off.

memories of an Uncle

after hanging up the phone yesterday in a brief conversation with my dad, I began, as usual, to make dinner. In the kitchen, my mind went to my late Uncle, who passed away this past week due to cancer. I knew him mostly as a child. Once I became grown and married, I mostly had communication with him at Christmastime. As I let myself go back and recall memories of my “Ankle Buzz” from many many summers and Christmases I spent in Louisiana at my Grandmother‘s home, I reminded myself that my memories would be completely different than memories, say, as my dad would have of his older brother. I also wondered if my dad even knew I had these memories. They are quite random as memories of a childhood can be.
To recall a few …
.. I recall a certain Christmas gift I received at my dear Grandmother’s house. It was a drawing pad that was black and when you pressed on it, the rainbow colors appeared. “Ankle Buzz” as he loved to say to me, loved how this made an instant rainbow and smiled.. just like dad.
…on a family trip.. for us that meant ten hours from wherever we lived… we stayed at his house.. a few streets away from my grandmother’s house…. and I remember he wasn’t there… but he left Captain Crunch cereal in the house knowing I was going to be there. I’d never had Captain Crunch, but to this day think its fabulous. I remember swimming in his new pool.. it was a vinyl one and when you stepped on the edge of the slope it went straight to the deep end.
…he loved to fly… he even got his license to fly and flew my mom, my little sister, and me either to or from Louisiana to Oklahoma. He got the biggest kick out of me freaking out in the co-pilots seat when we took our first turn…to the right… ( I was on the right…). no one told me a small plane would turn literally to the side and you’d see the ground out of your window… he just smiled…. just like dad…
…he played “hangman” with me on my Grandmother’s chalkboard hanging in the garage. Sometimes the game would go on for days.. right beside the “reminder’ notes for the store..he’d jot down “buy more beer” He didn’t live there, but lived close enough to come over to his parents house a lot while I was there.
…he loved nice things… I remember going to a mall with my Grandmother to “go shoppin” but first, we had to get “Ankle” Buzz’s Rolex fixed. The jewelry store there was right across from the toy store and was filled with clocks and jewelry.
…when John and I got engaged at age 22, Buzz gave us the plane tickets to fly to our Honeymoon. … months later at the wedding reception while John and I were thanking people for coming to our wedding, Buzz slipped two $100 bills in John’s pocket…. we felt so rich at that moment! I don’t know if John and I had ever held $200 at one time.
….Buzz always seemed to marvel at how he still had a head full of hair.. my dad full of brains…
…Buzz loved all things that could “go”… he had his plane, he had a sail boat at one time, and he had a fast classic car. I even recall an old black and white photo of a young “Buzz” pulling a wagon with a little blonde boy in the wagon… my dad.
I love you, Dad, and I know you loved your brother. Uncle Buzz was a happy man from the eyes of a child. I will always remember my Ankle Buzz with his happy eyes.. just like yours.

This last picture is one I took just a year ago at my grandmother’s funeral. I didn’t catch it in time to get a second picture. But usually when you saw my Uncle smile, his eyes looked shut in a lot of pictures…. just like dad…
About two weeks before my Uncle passed away, my sister and I both mailed Buzz a card along with a Holy card of the Divine Mercy Image. We both reminded Buzz and his wife of the love Jesus has for them. I am sure if Buzz got our cards, he saw those words under the image, “Jesus, I trust in You”

Its getting colder…

As this cold weather came across Texas, even the slightest drop into the 40s, and we are freezing…. We are so used to triple digits… I took the children to the park Monday and decided to try different settings with my camera.. before going to play…
The following day while Mass was being said, Sept 8, we met one of our Parish priests out at the Cemetery where Matthew is buried. On this day our other three were moved from their resting place to join their brother. We were there the entire time. It was a beautiful morning though. The air was crisp, but foggy. The Cemetery was beautiful in my opinion. It was just foggy enough that it looked peaceful. Every white marble headstone was given an evergreen wreath with a bright red bow. Matthew’s headstone was perfect. A little dirty after replacing it, but they were coming back to clean it later. All three, Luke, Mark, and Karoline’s, burial boxes were now in the same place as Matthew. We are happy knowing they all four rest with Him above. If you notice from the link, today is our own St Luke’s Feast day. St Luke, pray for us.

Our trip to Georgia

We figured out while driving to Georgia, why it looked different than before…. all of the Fall leaves were still on the trees. The Interstate was lined with every fall color imaginable. This is where I get “God’s Canvas” The world is God’s canvas. To me it looks like God took a paint brush and dipped it into the paint to get the brilliant colors that make up the leaves of fall, the sky and the clouds and everything around us. Usually when we drive to Georgia, it is over Christmas; by then, all of the fall leaves are gone. All we notice while driving are the bare trees next to the tall pine trees. ~~~~~~~

We stopped in Shreveport to visit with my Grandparents. The children love to go to their home and explore the music boxes, the wood carvings, and the other handmade creations in their home. My Grandfather, Dida, gave Opie a old pellet gun, one that he had been saving to give him for years. Opie was thrilled!

I didn’t have my camera for the wedding or reception, so I’ll wait to share pictures from that, but I do have a few from the days before.

John picked all of us up at my sister’s house to drive her and all of the flowers for the wedding party to the church. Here she is “squeezing” into the front of our Suburban in her beautiful ( full) dress.
Over the weekend, with the cousins in town, Nana and Guka raked leaves and let the kids all take turns jumping (and being dumped) into the piles.. I was trying the different settings on my camera, My favorite shots were the ones I did using the Sports setting. Then I spied a leftover spiderweb from the night in the iron fencing and used my up close setting.

We stopped by the EWTN station in Irondale Alabama. We were able to go in and pray in the sanctuary and visit the grounds. The station tour was going to start a little to late into the day for us this trip, so we’ll try to stay on our next pass through. The children overheard the lady in the Gift Shop say that Brother Leo sometimes does the tour, but since we were not staying, she offered to call over to the Friary and see if he was around. He invited us over, even though he wasn’t in his habit ( he was doing yard work). He was so friendly and was exactly like he is on the EWTN children’s hour. He brought out a few tricks to make analogies with the kids. He did the Curiosity box… asked Opie if he wanted to drop a coin in the slot.. and if he was curious to see what would happen….and POW.. it exploded ! His analogy was that sometimes our curiosity about somethings, like books and movies, can get us into trouble..
While we were gone, the shootings at Ft Hood called for our dear friend and priest, Fr Kevin to come to Ft Hood on TDY and offer ministry to the soldiers directly effected. The soldiers he worked with over last two weeks were those in line at the building that day. He was still in town when we returned and is staying with us. We love all of his visits here.
A few cute shots…

A couple of things

that we’ve been up to..

Cookie celebrated the Feast of St Therese with a tea party and finger foods using her Tea and Cake with the Saints book. We used my great grandmother’s Rose China for the occasion.DSC_0283

Soccer Soccer Soccer.. for our Opie who hasn’t played since he was 4. He is on a team that has had years of returning soccer players… this year the team is full of new soccer players.. The team is having to learn positions and skills from scratch with a coach who has had years of winning streaksDSC_0300

We are really hoping for cooler “Fall” weather.. ( I think today it is going to be in the 90s….) So we made Fall leaf mosaics using dried beans, kernels, and noodles. Somehow looking at them make the house feel cooler…DSC_0313DSC_0310DSC_0315