Sunday, January 29, 2017

Daybook - lots of January captured in photos

On one of our basketball trips around Texas, we stopped by Magolia in Waco...

"To me, we do not all have to agree with each other. 
Disagreement is not the same thing as hate, don’t believe that lie."

Lord Jesus Christ have mercy on me a sinner
50 x day

Outside my's been spring-like for a while! We really need to petition someone to redefine seasons. Texas "winter" so far lasted only about a week. We may have more coming, but none in the forecast. We'll be in the 80's next week. Not complaining. 

I am praying and success of loved ones, especially three young girls in my county who have been battling cancer.  Overall, for an increase of faith, desire for signal graces to see God's Hand in my life.  For me to loosen my need to control every aspect of life, especially to surrender areas I have no control over. This is a big theme so far for 2017.

I'm day 28 of our 54 day rosary novena, the day where I go from petitioning my requests to offering thanksgiving knowing and trusting God will hear and answer my prayers. A big leap for me. I may still petition, but hopefully my thanksgiving is louder. 

I have decided... not to continue the Co-op after this spring semester. We have caught so many illnesses and have become so far behind areas I do at home. I can't blame it solely on the coOp, but I know me, where we are so busy with 4-H and basketball I can't give enough time to a coOp. I had someone at church ask if I was still involved in the Sunday school program. Yes, I'm still int r DRE role. Sorry my presence has been missing. These illnesses effect CCD as well. It's really a decision of what to keep and what to drop, to keep my sanity.

I am looking forward to ... May for May crowning and First Holy Communion because Lilly has been kowtowing hard preparing, learning the Catechism questions and memorizing prayers. 

I am thankful...Lilly's fall into the fireplace grate didn't cause more damage. The nose is scraped and swollen. It did bleed, which is a sign it could be. Token, but it actually looks straight beneath the swelling. It was a weird fall, she tripped and just flew forward. I'm also thankful to friends she asked for prayers on Instagram. Also for arnica and ice packs. 

In the has been staying beautiful clean lately, while we go, go, go for basketball and 4-h. I did make a BIG batch of humsa. It is a ground meat mixture that can be fillings for kibbi (Lebanese meat loaf), meat pies or how we like it: on bread with ketchup. 
2 1/2 pounds ground beef/lamb
1 onion
2 TB butter 
1/4 cup pine nuts
1 tsp salt
1 tsp Allspice
1/2 tsp garlic
dash Cinnamon
Lightly saute' pine nuts in butter in small separate pan. Sauté diced onion, add ground beef, spices and cook until brown. Add pine nuts. Easy and yummy! 

I am reading...I finished Brideshead Revisited and enjoyed it more than I expected. Waugh, like Chesterton, talked to the invisible string that brings us back to God. The story is much about. Catholicism and people at various relationships with avid and loved ones. The characters are real people, complicated, flawed. All searching whether they realize it or not. 

I am waiting for my February book, Bronte's Villette for our Saint Jerome's  book club. My fiend Margaret's New Year's resolution for us is working!

I am watching...nothing really.  I am never home to watch anything!

I am listening to...Euly practicing basketball outside, dribbling on sand. Some day we'll pour concrete, but for now we consider it good practice for ball handling. 

I am start counting Gifts again on a regular basis. I was more at peace with life when I stop and recorded all the gifts, bug and especially the small, from God. Those little nods of love that if I look I can be so edified to see. 

I am looking forward to..March. But I'm also looking forward to the mini trips we will be taking to San Antonio and Dallas for 4-H and basketball events. We've already put so many miles on the car recently. 

Basketball: the girls' teams are improving. It is exciting to see the 12U girls. For a time we borrowed girls from another teams, after the last tournament, we improved so much, we are on our own. We have won a couple, and gotten very close on others. 
Euly's team is always exciting because they are a fourth quarter team. We keep suggesting they star he first as if it was the fourth, but the come backs, 3 point shots and overtimes have keep us on the edge of our seats. 

4-H We went to Fort Worth for a meats judging practice. It was a competition for FFA (Future Farmers of America) which run a little different from 4-H. They were exposed to some interesting cuts and had the practice of working in a freezing meat locker at 40 degrees. 
Ceci will also be competing in CDM (Consumer Decision Making) in San Antonio. Compare/ contract product information. She likes it and is good at it since it's logical shopping. 

Around the house...I'm making plans for changes, but none are happening yet. 

Around the farm... we sold 10 sheep a couple of weeks ago, including Hope. Two days later twin lambs were born, the mom picked one to love/nurture/feed and we have "Hope's Revenge."  We haven't named the little sweetie. She is strong and crazily unaware there are any dangers in the world. I had bet against her, but still fed her. I've been gone so much that Nick, Craig and Max have taken their turns feeding her and I think they have fallen for her.  She doesn't seems to have grown very much, but she doesn't have lots of energy. 

We have new hatchlings, more in incubator and some on order. We get about 15-20 eggs a day, and have a steady demand for what we have. We loose some naturally, so it's good to continually build up.

I'd like to add some guineas, but I'll wait for summer. 

A favorite quote/verse/prayer for today...
Fatima prayer 
"My God, I believe, I adore, I hope, and I love You. I beg pardon of You for those who do not believe, do not adore, do not hope, and do not love You."
(The Angel to three children of Fatima, spring 1916)

One of my favorite things...
This week was my grandmother's 105th birthday. She passed away about twenty years ago.
A few plans for the rest of the week... CoOp, basketball game, practice, 4-H practice, more games, and after a planned Saturday afternoon nap (haha) I'm going to start prepping all my garden items. 

Random January pictures of a peek into our days...
Brody is getting big.

 Saying goodbye to Hope.
 And bye to all the extra males.
and then saying a surprising hello to two babies born two days later.

  THis mama only picks one baby to like a raise. Ceci tried to encourage her.
 This baby isn't the lucky one.

 Most of our free time is spent on basketball, games practices or driving back and forth.

a new outdoor brooder.

 Marvelling at the different sizes of eggs.

 After a Forth Worth Meat Judging Competition.
Waller County 4-H Team
 Max has taken this baby under his care since we have been gone so much, he feeds her.
 and gives her extra love.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Finally a Daybook - With a Whole Lot of Catching Up

Outside my window...the weather has been unseasonably warm for the start of January. The kids played in the creek, which was swollen from an over night flash flood. blue skies, beautiful days to be outside. We are soaking it in with cooler weather on the way.

I am thinking ... about how much I missed blogging and reading blogs. I do love instagram (I'm mom_in_texas). I like to sit and sort through photos and process life and experiences. The days go by so quickly, the years fly by. I want to stop and think and appreciate and note all the things of life. It is a good life. I am thankful for it, and for the people with me. There are struggles and surprises, which I never imagined, and try to hard not to bemoan. I am human. I do complain. I worry, too much. All I will consciously work on for my 2017 resolution: "Trust. Don't Worry."

I am thankful...for my husband safely home from Saudi. Did that happen? Life is a blur. his photos were so interesting. he has great stories to tell of that part of the world. What a different life on this same planet. He spent time in Germany on his return and brought me some German sweet bread and a couple of beautiful scarves. The best thing, is that he came home safe and sound.

I am reading.. my Bible and my missal. For the new church year, I decided to do a Bible study to see how much of the Bible a Catholic actually reads by attending mass in a year. I am double dipping by using the tradition Latin Mass readings and the Novus Ordo readings. I try to mark them separately in the Bible, but am not consistent. I also mark other readings from other spiritual work like the Jesse tree and Marian meditations. Anything I find motivational. I have never enjoyed a Bible study more and I've stuck with it. I am looking forward to the rest of the liturgical year. 

Also, my friend Margaret has always wanted to do a book club. As always, she has a funny story to go along with her desire. I love her! I have done a couple book studies, but never last more than one book. Out New Year's Eve resolution was to start reading Brideshead Revisited based on the recommendation of her 20 year old daughter. I have stayed away due to subject matter, but she assures us it is worth it, very Catholic. My copy is on order. We are planning on reading and having a new reason to get together to visit!

I am learning...
I also bought a Continuing Professional Education class to start working on renewing and re instituting my CPA license. Yuck. I forgot how boring reading tax code is. Haha. I haven't gotten very far, and need to try harder with tax season upon us.

Pictures of my kids others have shared with me. 
At the Marine ball:

At birthday parties:

Playing paintball with friends from church:

I am new cowboy boots today. A Christmas gift from my husband. I need to break them in.

I am an icky appointment on a stressful matter I'd rather not disclose but would appreciate any prayers.

This was day 2 of putting in the water line. All hands on deck, even though some aren't as enthusiastic as others:

Water to the garden! Yay!

Around the farm...the number of chickens has surprisingly diminished. A raccoon must be sneaking while we aren't looking. We are one half the number of a few months ago. We hatched some and have four babies. We need more, so we'll keep trying.

I am hoping ... this little lady keep gaining weight. This is from a couple of weeks back and she looks better today. We treated her for worms. Now she has some warts. I guess some are just weaker and not as strong a constitution as others. Cows do have personalities. This one is a little out of it, "Oh, we;re eating now? I guess I should go on up and eat...oops its all gone."

Around the house... still cleaning up and putting away serving items from our New Years Party. I still have Christmas decor out. No hurry.

In the kitchen... made shredded chicken, a favorite for tacos.
Tonight I'm making humsa, a ground beef/lamb cooked with onions and pine nuts and spiced with cinnamon and allspice. 

I am watching...a variety of movies and shows over Christmas break. We saw Moana and Rogue One in theaters. Fun! I love movie popcorn and we tried out Alamo Drafthouse to have dinner while watching a movie. We watched the series Homeland, yes, the whole series. I cant get into the second series of Man in the High Castle. We watch Criminal with Kevin Costner, very exciting and very violent. Craig found Grand Tour, so now I get a break from the need to watch. 

I am listening to.. people sleep. It's now 5 am, but I woke up at 3 and could not go back to sleep. Sometimes weather changes, hormones, worries keep me up and there is no going to sleep even after a full rosary and chaplet of Divine Mercy. Lilly slept with us and has a little six year old sleeping child whizzing that is comforting to listen to.

A few plans for this week...trying to get doctors appointments out of the way early. First visit to eye doctor and dentist done. Should finish most of those up in next two weeks. Some had no problems,  some had big problems. Usually the same culprits every time. 

I am praying for ... Betsy, our past piano teacher. Sweet lady who thought she had diabetes, but now diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer and is on hospice. Also praying fore Father Victor Brown. I read his saint summaries and personal stories via email loop for many years. He is in hospice after a stroke. The notification had this comment: 

"Let us realize how fortunate we are to have the consolations of our holy faith as we find death approaching. We might remember the wonderful words of Cardinal Manning, an elderly English Bishop who was asked on his deathbed, "How do you feel?" He smiled and said, " I feel like a schoolboy going home for the holidays."

I am looking forward games resuming tomorrow after co-op. We are so busy,trying to balance all the kids commitments is a challenge to me, and to others involved with us. January and February are busy basketball games and tournaments and 4-H competitions. Sadly, we are skipping the archery district tournament this year.

A peek into my day...from our nature walk and goofing around outside.

Crazy sand patterns left by a flash flood.

Something that made me quickly the weather changes. This afternoon walk needed jackets while two days ago the girls were basically swimming in the creek.

Spotted some animal tracks by the creek.

I've missed this space. It feels nice to get back to making an active reflection on our lives.