Sunday, August 31, 2008

Baby Gamma Ray Monkey Has Escaped!

My buddy, Kelly the Amazing Catholic Mama Keeper of the Monkey House just delivered her 6th little monkey! AND, she didn't even come out with two noses or glowing green or anything! She DID have to be delivered very early but is huge for a 6 week early baby and is doing very well (considering her mom's severe problems with Preeclampsia and the fact that she had to be born emergency c-section-style).

Go over there and help to welcome Gemma Veronica into the world!

Friday, August 29, 2008


Thank God! Yehawwwwwww!
Sorry, it's just hard to contain my excitement about Sarah Palin.

I've always said that the only way we'll ever get a woman P/VP would be if it were a GENUINE, conservative woman who was as real as you or I. Unless there's some twisted skeleton in her closet, she sure seems fit for the VP spot. I totally dig her. She could be my new BFF along with Michelle Bachmann. Man, I love those chicks! I truly admire them for being great wives and mothers yet sticking their smartness and money where their mouths are by fighting for what they believe in and not backing down. If she sticks to her guns and remains true to herself (without listening to "advisers" that I'm sure are going to be constantly in her ear for the next few months or years) she will have my vote.

I am NOT excited about John McCain nor will I ever really be. I will, however (as of now) be checking off the box by his name very happily knowing that if he croaks in office, our first woman president will actually just be the first REAL CONSERVATIVE president in a LOOOOOOOOONG while (woman or man).

Even Michelle is optimistic about her.

OOOOOOOH, wouldn't a ticket of Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachmann against HILLARY and whatever pinko lib she would pick to be her VP be a HOOT?

I'm giddy with the thought of all the WOMYN getting befuddled about who to vote for NOW! HEEHEEHEEHEEEEEEE!

I loved her speech. Especially the fact that she barely looked down, never said "um", or "like", or, (Heaven forbid) "y-oh" (in my opinion, that is Barack's worst habit. It's almost as bad as Hillary's witchy voice). I loved how she looked like she was speaking from the heart and not from notes and yet, she never stumbled. Plus, she's just as cute as a bug's ear in her skirtsuit, I don't care who you are you gotta admit that!

Her kids have goooooofy names, but I'll forgive her for that.
I'm listening to her speech again and I wonder what men will think of her? She maybe seems like she would make men (real men) want to be even better rather than think she's some kind of ball buster who would hen peck them until they pulled all their hair out.

Sen. McCain standing next to her looks a little out of place. You can tell he maybe didn't choose her himself but that he was SURE happy he did by the reaction of the crowd and the alternative media. I keep waiting for him to wipe his forehead and go "whew".

I think picking her was the ONLY smart thing he's done so far in this campaign.

*UPDATE:Whoopsie. Katrina (the daughter one) just read this post and said, "MOM! That's MEAN!" about this phrase:
"...knowing that if he croaks in office, our first woman president will actually just be the first REAL CONSERVATIVE president in a LOOOOOOOOONG while (woman or man)."

I guess what I should have said was something like, "...and, if John McCain happens to not be able to fulfill his duty as president of the U.S., THEN Sarah Palin could step in and be the first REAL CONSERVATIVE..."

Meaning, I should have pointed out more how great it would be that we could possibly have a genuine conservative for a president for the first time in a long time. I do not wish Sen. McCain to meet an untimely death. I'm sorry if my strange writing style made it appear so.

Also, after hashing this whole thing out with my sister on the phone tonight (we are both political junkies and our hubses are really NOT so we need our fix now and then) we agree on two things:
Gov. Palin should ditch the beehive/clippy do, and stop clapping into the microphone.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Would You Pump Your Milk And Feed It To A Calf?

I will do an update post (with PICTURES, YAHOOOOOOO!) on all of the projects we've been at soon but I wanted to quick post about this touchy subject while it's fresh on my brain.

Before I provide the link, I want to tell a little story:

When Trina was just about 4 months old or so, I took her to the mall. I heard this baby crying bloody murder on the other side of the mall. When the dad and the baby got closer, we (I think my sister, Katrina was with me) saw that it was a friend of ours' husband and her baby. The dad was pretty clueless and didn't have the baby's milk or bottle handy (I found out later that the mom was still breastfeeding but mostly used a bottle with formula at that time).

The baby was crying so hard that he was all red and stiff and we couldn't even talk above the clamor. I knew a "hungry!" cry when I heard one! The superclueless dad asked us if we had a bottle with and I shrugged because I NEVER had to bring a bottle with me! He stood there like an idiot and I shyly suggested (out of desperation) if I should just go ahead and nurse the poor baby just to calm him down.

I couldn't believe those words came out of my mouth!

Nurse someone ELSE'S baby? Without the MOM'S permission?

So many thoughts filled my head but the one, prevailing one was, "THIS BABY NEEDS FOOD! FEEEEEEED THE BABY!". So I didn't really have time to really ponder those other thoughts until later. For instance:

1. What would (the mother) think?
2. How long has he been crying?
3. Would he cry harder, knowing that I wasn't his mom?
4. Would feeding him somehow break his bond with his mom?
5. Is it "gross" to feed someone else's baby?
6. If my baby would ONLY breastfeed, would I mind if someone else breastfed HER?
...and many others that are probably filling YOUR mind right now!

The dad ended up remembering that he had milk in the car and he sort of spacily wandered off with his screaming baby (everything turned out all right, he met up with the mom I found out from her later) but, from that point on, I thought about something I had never thought about before!

If you would just point blank ask me "would you ever breastfeed someone else's child?" I would probably say (before that incident), "Ew, NO!".

After having lots of good breastfeeding experiences (and lots of bad ones too, mind you) I would now say "Sure, big deal, why not? I would do anything for any baby in a pinch!".

What made me recall this memory and these thoughts? I found an article by a woman in the U.K.. I don't like the way she promotes herself in the provocative picture at the top of the article, but if you read it through, it is interesting how her thoughts evolved about breastmilk and society, etc..

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Open Door

I had a wonderful weekend (it's not even over! We still get to have a bonfire tonight and go out to eat after church tomorrow! Butch is home after a week of being gone and life is good!).

The only thing I didn't get to do but really wanted to, was to meet my sisters at a restaurant for the 34 year old's birthday.

It started out on Thursday night as I sorted all of our books (school and pleasure reading). It's always fun to have the time and energy to sort. There is something very fun about finding books you didn't know you had, sorting books into subject categories (I always wanted to be a librarian), and dusting and cleaning spots that haven't been touched in a while.

I got up on Friday morning to a clean house and got the kids all ready for a visit with Paula and her two kiddos. They all stayed here (so, with my 6, her 2, and cousin's daughter to help sit, and her brother to play with Matty...there were 10 kids in my house all day!) while Paula and I went to the tea party.

Tracy has all of the relevant links.

Bocker and Weazy went home with Paula for a sleepover! She didn't use them for target practice or anything out thar in hintersville so I had to pick them up this afternoon, after all. On our way home (she was gracious enough to meet me halfway) we stopped at Menard's. I'd been meaning to get some new handles for my bathroom sink and some other misc. things that need repair/refurbishing.

I saw the Larson Doors display and sighed.

See, we've had this issue with our door handle on the screen door for months and months. It's one of those things like when my oven didn't work where it doesn't matter how inconvenient it is to NOT have that's even more hassle to actually try to fix/replace that thing. I simply do not have time to order parts (especially on the phone, that's just a joke with kids in the background) or the money to replace expensive things.

My door handle had snapped off the little tongue thing in the fall and the door still stayed closed sometimes but would fly open in a stiff wind.

It's been REALLY windy this year.

Oh, who am I kidding? It's the windiest place in the world around here all the flamin' time. Chicago ain't got nothin on us! Anyway, we would just grab a belt, strap, misc. piece of string and sort of jam it closed in the door. It was a cheap, simple rig that made do for many months (although, it wasn't ideal if you were outside and had to get in!). I finally ordered the correct parts from the company (after taking it apart, bringing it to the store so they could see what kind it was, and losing the part I brought to the store) but they sent only part of the assembly (the part I threw away by accident wasn't included) and the other parts needed to be ordered by phone (heeheehee, yeah, right!).

SOOOOOO, today, I waltzed in the store, fully expecting to just buy the whole, dang thing (50-60 bucks I don't really have) just to keep the front of our house from looking so white trash, like it has for months since the storm. The roof was re-done last week, the siding will be done next week, the windows will be replaced sometime in Oct., I think, and I want to re-paint the porch, and spray paint the outside lights (I bought some spray paint today, too).

I found the part I needed on a display and hoped against hope that SOMEONE would be able to help me. I walked around the display about 4 times in spacecase land and couldn't find ONE person who looked like they worked there (which is odd for Menard's, they are usually jumping all over themselves to help you). I was just about to give up, thinking it just wasn't in the cards for that day...

WHEN WHOM SHOULD I SEE, BUT AN ANGEL IN A BLUE SMOCK (cue the sound of angelic choir singing aaaaaahhhhhhh!)!!!

He listened to my girly lament about which parts I needed and stuck his knowing finger in the air, turned on his heel, and came back with a box of the whole assembly and said something like, "Here you go, you can just have it.".

I said, "So, how much is it?"

He looked at me and said, "Like, DUH, I said you could JUST HAVE IT, crazyperson!"

Heh heh, he would never say that, even if he was really thinking it.


We chatted a bit about blogging, Catholicism, and hope.

Ooopsie, I forgot to mention that I actually know that guy. He was the EMHC in this post and he blogs sometimes at The Catholic Trenches. He's studying to become a deacon and is a member of our parish. I'm not going to name him because I want to appear mysterious and exotic...I mean, because it might embarrass him... but his name rhymes with "Spike" and he has a beard, a nice wife, and two boys. I never knew he worked at that store for a living but I sure am glad he does!!!

I don't care if people think that it's a petty thing that maybe God shouldn't be bothered with...but I call that (and also my meeting Kimberly earlier this week) one of my "God moments".

Oh, I know it isn't anything as wild as an "inner locution" or a "vision of Mary, smiling down on me" but it's all I need to know that God is with me and there when I need Him.

NOW, I can open my door whenever I want. I can shut it and it will STAY closed. I can pull down the glass today (what a day for it!!!) and shut off the air conditioner and let the beautiful breeze flow through the house as I think about how the screen (which I haven't been able to use since last fall) filters out the bad (bugs, leaves, mice, solicitors) and lets in the GOOD, fresh air.


Friday, August 22, 2008

Psssst? *update

Hey YOU!

You know, you there who's been reading my blog and laughing your head off for so long now.

You already feel like you know me.

After all, you USED to know me. Back when. Remember? Back when you called me your friend. We talked all the time and somehow (maybe around my third kid or so) we lost touch or had some sort of falling out (not sure which...does it matter anymore?) and you felt sort of bad but you had your life to live too and...

we just stopped being friends. Or even acquaintances. You moved away. I moved a little bit away (but never really far). We both grew up a little.


(Years later, after you had forgotten all about me except for when you saw a picture of us together in your collection of Kodak disposable camera photos.)

You decided to Google my name (my real name with my married last name included...'cause you knew that).

You found this blog.

You went, "oh my GOSH! It IS her! She has 1,2,3,4,5...6 kids now!"

Then you called that person you live with over to see because they used to know me too or you told them about us one time...or showed him our pictures from the Kodak/yearbook/church directory.

You've been lurking here a long time and checking out this blog and reading the comments.

You feel like you actually kind of know me again.

Just like the good old days before I became a huge bitch and did something to make you mad, offended, feel strange and uncomfortable, or sad.

It was me, not you. I swear (okay, maybe it was a little you)


I promise I won't judge you. I just wish you wouldn't hide behind the anonymity of the internet (really, it's not very anonymous now, is it? After all, I found out you were here, didn't I?).

Please comment. Please Email ( PLEASE CALL ME.

So much has happened since we last talked and I'd love to reconnect in some way, even if it's just to check up on each other and for me to know if you're still alive and well. I miss you and your family.

If you still don't feel like I've been addressing YOU, and YOU won't contact me...I guess I'll have to be okay with that but I have to say, it's not really that fair that you know so much about me and I really feel like YOU have fallen off the face of the earth.

(anybody who is not "YOU" but is a regular commenting friend, I will not post your comments or emails about this post...but I WILL read them and always appreciate them!)

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Need Some Help Here

Mommy Catholic homeschool blogger alert:

I got this whole set of the Blest Are We series for grade school. It looks as if it has never been used. I sent Matty to CCD back when he was in his FHC year and it's the same series the parish has used in the past. I checked it out (perused, really...CORRECTION! I briefly leafed through it. Who knew "perused" meant that? Mah frens is so smurt.) and it looks pretty good except for some really stupid song choices (whatever) and some overly "nature-y" stuff (if ya know what I mean). Do any of you recommend I keep it or is it a good one to sell maybe (so I can buy some other good things for homeschooling)?

Let me know.


Wordy Thursday

Matty has been begging me all summer long to go to the MOA and, because it was his 11th birthday on the Feast of the Assumption, I finally had to take him.

I REALLLLLY didn't want to go. I even tried to bribe him yesterday morning. I promised all sorts of things but he didn't give in and he made me go against my will. I'm so very glad he did. He really had a nice time but, while he was on this super scary ride:

and I was feeding Tommy on a bench, I met a lady named Kimberly who happened to be a new homeschooler. We got to chatting (imagine that) and I found a new friend. God has ways of putting people together, I'm convinced of that.

I also took this picture (with my camera phone...still don't have a real camera) of a screen outside of the roller coaster. I wonder if Matty knew his picture was being taken?..NAW!

Tommy rode in the backpack all day with rests on benches here and there and a time out of crawl practice at Legoland. Matty brought his friends Brendan and Brady (brothers, neighbors) too. Trina watched the other kids at home and did a fine job babysitting.

It was a very nice day considering it was so humid and to spend the day outside would have stunk anyway.

Tomorrow is going to be AWESOME. I can't tell you why yet. Stay tuned...

OH! Today is my sister, Katrina's 34th birthday wow is that old or what? She's so old and wrinkly and today is her birthday and she's ooooooooooold and stuff. Did I mention she's 34?

SHE'S 34!

I thought I might post her phone number so you all can call her but she may have a problem with that. I also would post a picture of her but she REALLY would have a problem with THAT!

Monday, August 18, 2008


I wonder if there will be new discoveries in the care of premies using this case as a study?

Headline (from Drudge):

Premature baby pronounced dead, comes back to life after 5 hours in hospital freezer...

The baby ended up dying anyway. They said that it was never dead (which I believe, of course) but it still is a miracle in that it proves so much the human person's will to live is SO STRONG that the baby's heart could still be beating and the baby could still be moving and trying to breathe after being born so premature and stuck in a cooler for hours. Why do the doctors in this second article KNOW that the baby would have had severe brain damage? Hmmm? They don't. We don't know ANYTHING about a human being's potential to survive and live life abundantly. Whether that's for a hundred years or for only a few minutes, it IS life!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Faith In His Father

Niklaus: Hey Daddy? Can you just move this out of the way quick so I can bike around?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


I have been so busy with summer stuff lately that I haven't had time to do my regular "blogging". I apologize in advance for any stupid spelling/grammar mistakes. It is past midnight right now and I keep nodding off..,

I usually would check out my pal's blogs, some priests blogs, news blogs, then random ones for a little while. I save the "caringbridge" ones for last. I think I do this because I don't want to be depressed before I check out the fun or funny blogs. I want to go to bed praying and thinking about all the people that I know (or know of) that need prayers. I thought I'd share with you which ones I have in my "favorites" so you can pray too.
(I check out other ones sometimes but they usually leave me sobbing and a mess so I try to stick to just the ones I'm going to tell you about. I know some of these people and some I don't know at all, I'm just awed by their strength and abilities. Be aware that some of these people don't share any of my beliefs about faith issues and they might be a little miffed or put out by someone commenting something about their faith. Please don't tell them I sent you if you do decide to comment.). I think God must have a hand in the way I found out about some of these people and I figure that He must also not mind so much if I spread the word this way so you can pray for them too:

I worked with a lady a long time ago in a nursing home. Years later, I heard her son drowned and became brain damaged (around age 3, I think). He is the same age as Matty and I found her caringbridge journal about him. She is a very sweet mom and loves her boys very much.

I never knew anything about mitochondrial disorders until I started to read about Noah. I'm not sure how I found this one but I am so amazed by this big, helpful, happy family and all the love they have to give (all while running a business and homeschooling).

I heard about this little guy from my friend K's blog. His mom reminds me to not get so mad at Niklaus when he acts up. Neuroblastoma is no joke. I can't even begin to imagine the suffering of this horrible disease or how it would just break my heart if my little Bocker had to face such a thing.

This man had an accident while setting up a deer stand with his son last year. He's been through so much and has come a very long way in his recovery. He and his wife are full of faith and love for their family. They are relatives of people that go to my church and they know a lot of the same people I know (they live a few towns away).

This kid is the nephew of an old school friend of mine (and a relative of mine...somewhere up the line, I'm sure) from our town/church. I wrote about him when he first had his accident (shot in the face with a shotgun while target practicing and lost an eye). The picture on the front page right now is him after his surgery that he recently had to fix some of the scarring (I think) from last year but he really is doing quite well and adapting to his disability with much humor and grace (his whole family is really like that).

I first heard about this lady from an old school friend. She really was in trouble not that long ago and I really thought she wasn't going to pull through but she's had some good times lately and there is a lot of hope for her as far as her cancer goes. Her little boy is such a cutie and they always post the funniest pictures of him. No matter how bad things got for her (she's even had to seek alternative therapies in the past) she always seemed to have so much hope. I think sometimes that's what keeps people moving forward and healing themselves from within.

Here is a man who only got sick mere months ago and now the doctors can do no more for him other than keep him comfortable (and even that's proving to be difficult) at his home. I went to school with his children (they lived and still live just up the block from my parents) and I was on the liturgy committee with his wife for a time. She is one of the sweetest ladies and obviously dedicated and loving wife I've ever observed (her children mostly update the site and they are so good at articulating what's happening with their father's care).

And finally, I'd like to tell you about these super cute boys that I heard about from my neighbors (Eric and Laura). They had a preemie (who was a twin but one of the twins didn't make it, rest his soul... and they directed me to Evan and August's site a while back). I love this one because they ended up having another little boy last year and they always update with pictures. I've read every post in fascination that anyone could do that much stuff in one day. It's such a busy life for them and one of the twins is very special needs and probably will be forever.

So, if you ever want to curb some of the whining that's welling up in your heart on a particularly stressful day...check out one of these (or one of the many caringbridge sites) and say a little prayer for someone who is really suffering and may need a little or BIG prayer boost to get through a tough time.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008


One of my favorite authors:

Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Read (from) the article by Andrew Cusak:

"Harvard was not amused. It had identified a genius, it had awarded him laurels, it had graced him with earthly dignities, but he had seen through all its pretensions and glanced the rotten core of its very soul. Harvard is one of the highest temples to Man in our realm. It was founded as a Protestant seminary, and Man’s usurpation of God’s role is inherent (if only implicitly) in Protestantism. In Catholic Christianity, not even the Pope can change the Truth; in Protestant Christianity, every single individual person is the arbiter of every single aspect of doctrine, belief, and morality. Catholicism is authority, Protestantism is the absence of authority, and the liberal Enlightenment thinking which easily superseded Protestantism at Harvard is the negation of authority.
Communism has ceased to play a part on the world stage, but if Solzhenitsyn is remembered centuries from now I do not think it will be for his criticism of Communism but for his repudiation of the West’s rejection of Christianity and it’s embrace of the Enlightenment. His experience of the prison camps of the East, in which humanity was despised, allowed Solzhenitsyn to see through the vain pomp and glory of the West, in which humanity is worshipped. Solzhenitsyn understood, to the incomprehension of the self-satisfied elites of our time and place, that it was neither communism nor capitalism, neither money nor equality, neither economics nor politics that should be worshipped, but only God."

You gotta love a person who gets invited to speak and then actually speaks truth when, all along, the people who invited him think he's just going to be blowing wind up know. In the article it says "Harvard was not amused"
Good one, Alex!

May the perpetual light shine upon him.
H/T Ray

Friday, August 01, 2008

Still Crazy After All These Years

Yesterday Butch and I celebrated 15 years of wedded bliss...or, as I told him on the phone, "more like, 11 or so great years and the rest not as great" heh!

Yes, we had to "celebrate" our anniversary on different sides of Minnesota. He was working in Duluth and I was on a mini-vacation with the kids near Nisswa. I didn't even remember it was our anniversary until I was "On a Bus to St. Cloud, Minnesota" that's the truth! Just outside of St. Cloud, after talking to him and saying our "goodnight"s, I had to call him back around 9pm and wake him up because my mom called me and asked if we were home yet and joked that we "sure had some kind of anniversary, huh?".


Hopefully we'll be able to go out tonight (when he gets home from Duluth) or maybe we'll just get the movie "Return to Me" and have some alone time after the kids go to bed.

I've already said on this blog all of the nice things about my husband but I guess it doesn't hurt to say a few more...

I love him more and more every year. He is more attractive to me than any other guy out there (yeah, I gots me the 'love blinders' but bad!). He is the finest father I could ever hope for for these children of ours. I really don't know what I did to deserve him. He is immensely patient with my womanly worries and neurotic tendencies. He really understands me and is my bestist best friend (with benefits heehee).
He works at places like this:

to keep us fed and clothed and housed in the manner to which we have become accustomed (man, I've always wanted to use that phrase!).

Umm hmmm, he took that picture from the top of one of his jobs just last week.
He has been working in places like that for 12+ years.
He told me a long time ago that he's still afraid of heights.

THAT'S how much he loves us.

That's how much he loves ME.

I couldn't ask for more, nor would I want to!

P.S. Please pray for Butch right now for a special intention, thank you!