Saturday, April 29, 2006


I will be taking a short hiatus from my blog. Hopefully only for a few days. We are at a cross roads with our business and at the same time exhausted from a four year struggle just to surive. This past week has been especially hard. Yesterday - simply exhausting. We managed to get the money together needed to pay for the auctions but were unable to get a single person to confirm that the company received our funds. We will not know until Monday. Again, we are trying to leave it in God's hands and trust.

So for a few days while our family works hard to make some very crucial decisions, I will take a short break from the blog. I will back soon, and hopefully refreshed with lots to write about. Your prayers for us during the next few days will be very appreciated. Read more!

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Thank you Infant Jesus!

Some of my readers, no doubt, remember the disaster that happened a few months back when some local gentlemen accidently mistakened a 2000 dollar item for scrap metal and removed it, selling it before we could recover it from them.

We were greatly discouraged by this and we were wondering how we would recover from this. I started going through our inventory and I saw two items that were of high value, but had not even had a nibble of interest shown in them since putting them ip for auction. I saw a light at the end of the tunnel. Excited, I printed off our auction descriptions for these two items. I then folded them very carefully and tied a pretty bow around them. I then placed them beside our Statue of the Infant of Prague and we started a novena in which we asked the Baby Jesus to sell these two items and that they would be paid for in time to for us to buy more merchandise to sell.

These exact two items sold, and were paid for, just in the nick of time! God is good, so very good. I had intended to post this miracle when we experienced the even greater blessing of our son surviving that incredible accident just before Easter weekend.

Now we are waiting on the wonderful Infant of Prague once more. We did two novenas back to back for assistance while my husband researched and bid on merchandise for our new website, which is almost ready to launch. (I can't wait to show it to all of you. A very generous couple have been assisting us in its conception and birth!) We prayed we would win betweem 20 - 30 auctions and that we would receive enough of the money owed to us from sold merchandise to be able to pay for these 20 - 30 auctions.

We won exactly 30 auctions. We have about half of them paid for. We have enough in receivables to pay for the rest of them... but payments are painfully trickling in!


This is what I am praying for now. God seems to often tease my husband and I. Not a little unlike the testing of Job's faith. What I don't understand is how, over and over again my faith trembles as the deadlines draw near. How is it that despite so many blessings, I still sometimes falter and fear that perhaps God will ignore our pleas for assistance? Greater still must God wonder.

So I ask one and all to pray for my husband and I to have courage. To have faith. And to receive the graces we need to be patient as we wait... and wait... and watch the deadline creep closer and closer, while the Pay Pal account remains empty.

Thank you Jesus for prayers answered. Thank you for all the blessings you have heaped on us this year. Thank you! Read more!

Which fly is it?

Miguel: "Bethany, your fly is down."

Bethany: (very much puzzeled) "What fly?"

Mummy: "The zipper in your pants is also called a fly."

Bethany: "Oh!"

Sometimes even very simple words get missed in the vocabulary lessons of life!
Read more!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


If you would like to know what my angelic children were up to while I was in Florida and Georgia the past 24 hours... click here. Read more!

Please note...

...when tempted to buy a new toy for the baby's first birthday check it out throughly. Aquaint yourself with ALL the sounds that it makes BEFORE you shell out the 6.99 for it. Or you will soon find yourself desiring to hide this toy from her 5 yr old brother who is enthralled with all its bells and whistles. The rest of the family will begin to beg you to hide it adding to your, already high, stress levels.

You will start to wonder where your sanity was when you purchased said bargain. You will also question why your husband did not think either to test out this toy's noise making abilities. After all, you showed it to him too.

All I can say is, he better not add any complaints to those that are already being heaped on my head for having bought this monstrous annoyance, which the baby has already fogotten about. Read more!

My apologies...

I tried to post on Monday - but bloggerspot would not co-operate with me and so my post sat in the draft file until this evening. I also wanted to let you know that we were headed on the road to Florida and Georgia for business. We have already done so and are back in less than 24 hours.

Needless to say - we are poofed. Tomorrow is another run but this time just within NC. There are more trips coming up - to Louisana, Georgia, Virginia, Alabama and Ohio. Many will be 24 hour runs where we drive throught he might spelling each other off. It is Hugo who does the bulk of the driving, I'm there as back up for the rough spots. Like from 3 am to 4 am and for short spells throughout the day. Prayers for safety are very welcome. I will post ahead of trips (hopefully, assuming blogerspot co-operates!) Now I must run, the children who stayed home are still cooking their dinner! The van is almost completly unpacked and a few children are trying out the skipping rope I bought for myself. In other words - chaos reigns.

mum2twelve Read more!

Monday, April 24, 2006

Another tid bit from Sister Janet...

There was a time when I visited a Hindu diplomat, the first time I
had ever met him or entered the Embassy. The courtesy and
hospitality towards a complete stranger was incredible, so much so
that I commented on it. The answer? "God has many forms. I do not
know if you are God coming to me in the guise of a stranger. If I
turn you away, then I might have turned God away from my door."

Something I would do well to remember, whether speaking to one of my children, my husband or
a stranger.

Read more!

Saturday, April 22, 2006


Today I was pondering the age old question that has become a visitor to me much more often than it did in my twenties. The question of energy and why is so much of it i granted to small children whilst the parents, who were not smart enough to value it when they were children, have so little?

How unfair it is, I murmered to myself that Emma hops about, filled not only with joy for life but also so much exuberant energy. She races from one piece of mischief to another, sometimes with a a partner in tow and sometimes not. And of course, any partner in crime she has also has energy to spare!

But is any of it shared with me? No. Why oh Lord do you waste - yes, waste this energy on such little ones and leave us, who must run after, provide for and protect these little ones, with so little energy in our old, err, middle age?

And I heard an answer. Yes, I did. Once more our Lord chuckled in my ear as He whispered the answer.

'I have blessed you with sufficent energy to begin each day, and for the rest you must remember to turn to me, daily, hourly, even moment by moment. In this way I keep your eyes focussed on Me, for I am a jealous God.

When you were a child you believed in me implicity. Your faith was simple and your mind was not troubled by worries and cares that leave you buried in the world. You were easily delighted by a butterfly as it fluttered past you and the grass as it tickled your toes. Without even knowing it, you acknowledged and worshiped me through your pleasure in the world that I created for you. But as an adult the worries and cares of the world press in on you, taking you away from Me.

When you are tired, you MUST turn to me and acknowledge your need for Me. Then I will bless you with all the energy you need, and more. Just turn to Me and ask... Ask and you shall receive. ' Read more!

Friday, April 21, 2006

Popular Joint...

One night, several weeks ago, we awoke to the door quietly creeking open. A small body crept in and a little voice asked; "Tan I 'leep wit you pease?" One of us lifted the blanket and she joined an already crowded bed. Elsa was curled up into my back, one of her favorite sleeping spots. Nathaniel had already joined us on Hugo's side of the bed. I'm not sure when, but I could see his curly top sharing Hugo's pillow.

Hugo raised his head and looked over all the little heads spread between us and gave a little chuckle.

"This bed seems to be a pretty popular joint these nights, eh?"

This brought a smile to me face and I laughed into my pillow. Yes! Our bed sure is a popular joint! I guess our popularity is partly why I am so tired most days. Read more!

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. This is a sound I have been surrounded by since Easter Sunday when all of the children found electric toothbrushes beside their chocolate bunnies. Even my 20 year old son got one to take back to college and Miguel, who had already bought one for himself, got some fancy smancy orange toothpaste.

Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. I smiled with pride as I stopped by the bathroom door and listened to this lovely sound - the sound of teeth being brushed, whitened and cared for. I peeked into my bathroom to see who was cleaning their teeth with their lovely new electric brush.

Imagine my surprise when I saw 5 year old Nathaniel lying on the floor, his head resting on one arm, as he pushed his electric toothbrush across the floor watching it's fire engine lights blink and the bristles spin to the lovely whirring sound.

Rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr... Read more!


As I recently shared we came very close to losing our oldest son and third child, who is 20 years old, when the truck he was driving suddenly cracked it's back axle. It spun across three lanes of rush hour traffic at 65 miles an hour, slamming into the cement median twice, before coming to a stop facing traffic the wrong way.

Well - today Danielle has announced the birth of a fellow blogger's newest addition and this lead me to another blog and so to this post. It is this post that lead me to say ditto. There is nothing like almost losing a loved one that makes you appreciate the common everyday things in life.

Thank you Jesus for all of the mundane things in my life; dishes, diapers, dirty toilet bowls, the detested task of shipping merchandise. I am so grateful that I have ALL of my beautiful children and wonderful husband to share my common, normal, run of the mill life with. I am so grateful that, as Alice titled her post, my life is Status Quo! Read more!

Stomach Flu..

I am ill with a bug of some sort, so I am being lazy and borrowing from Sister Janet again. What she writes is always profound and this one is no exception! For those of you who also receive Sister Pat's Peace Letter I apologize for the repeat.

On a personal note...

Jesus and Mary

When Jesus was taken down from the cross, he was put in the arms of
Mary, his mother. It occurred to me that when that happened, Mary's
clothes must have become stained with the blood of her son. We talk
about having been redeemed by the blood of Jesus, but Mary was the
first one to be stained with the blood of the Cross. She was the
first person to be redeemed by the death of Jesus.

For hundreds of years it has been thought that a cloth that was
found in Turin in Italy was actually the burial cloth of Jesus. The
Holy Shroud, as it is called, is marked with the figure of a man
who had been crucified. It seems as though there is a strong chance
that the cloth might be genuine.

I've been reading the book written by a man who conducted several
scientific tests on tiny fragments of the Shroud in an attempt to
see if the cloth is genuine. It made me think that, although we
might have Jesus' burial cloth, I've never heard of anybody having
fragments of whatever clothes Mary might have been wearing when she
held Jesus once he had been taken down from the Cross.

I thought about that and tried to put myself in the position of

It seems to me that, if any mother is to hold her dead child, she
does not want to be reminded of the way in which her child died,
especially if the child died in a brutal manner, as did Jesus. I
imagine that, rather than keeping her clothes as a precious relic
for future generations, the first thing Mary did when she returned
home would be to wash them. Perhaps they were so heavily
bloodstained that she simply burned them. She wouldn't want to have
them lying around the house, even if it were Jesus' blood on them.
As mother, she wouldn't want to be reminded of the agony suffered
by her Son. She wouldn't want to be reminded of her own feelings of
pain and helplessness as she watched Jesus die.

Perhaps that is why we don't have any relics of Mary's.

There is a very old tradition that suggests that before Jesus
appeared to Mary Magdalen, he went first to see his mother. I hope
he did. That tradition fits in with my understanding of Jesus as a
loving son. If anybody had suffered with Jesus, Mary had. I can't
think that Jesus would appear to his friends and not to his mother.
However there is nothing in Scripture that tells us whether or not
Jesus visited Mary. Is this one more thing that Mary would keep
secret for the rest of her life? Is it one more thing that would
remain inside her heart for the rest of her life?

I wonder what Jesus and Mary would have said to each other. Both
had been through the biggest experience of their lives. His Father
had also brought Jesus back to life. It seems to me that whatever
Jesus and Mary talked about, it wouldn't have been something as
trivial as the weather. Exactly what they said is something we'll
probably never know. What they would have experienced was complete
love for each other.

Lord, you and your mother shared so many precious moments. You must
have given her so much joy after the resurrection, but perhaps she
scolded you for having made her suffer also. Lord, there are times
when we can, deliberately or accidentally, cause suffering to
people we love. Help us to understand when we have been hurt. Help
us to forgive. When we have caused pain, help us to say sorry. Help
us to love and to accept love.


God bless, Sr. Janet

Web outreach and development

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Sunday, April 16, 2006

Amit's Shoes...

“Jonatan”, Emma called happily. “Look, Mummy bought me somes new shoes! Hee!”

“Oh,” Jonathan murmured appreciatively. “They’re nice.”

“Yet!”, Emma readily agreed. “Dey are, Dey are my NEW shoes. Dey are my Amit Shoes!”

Amit is the Indian gentleman that owns and runs the gas station next door. Typically when Emma walks there with me she picks a flower or two for Amit, who graciously receives these mutilated blooms. He has three daughters of his own and realizes the importance of these offerings. Sometimes Amit returns the favour by offering Emma a free candy of her choice from a colourful selection of Laffy Taffy.

Jonathan studied her shoes closely and then seriously stated. “Oh, really – but I don’t see Amit on your shoes.”

Not content with this response Emma pointed enthusiastically to the pink strap across the front of the new sandle that adorned her left foot.

“Hee – it tays Amit shoes right here!”

“Oh, really?”, queried Jonathan. “Well – I don't see where they say Amit’s on them, but I think they are very pretty shoes.

Emma stared at him for a moment looking very disatisfied, before she tried again.

“Yet dey do! Wite here. Hee!” Again she pointed to the same pink strap. “Dey say; Very pwetty Amit shoes!”

And, of course, this was followed by the inevitable question. “Tan you take me to Amit’s in my Amit shoes?”

Read more!

Happy Easter to All of you!

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An explanation...

I don't beleive I explained the tradition of our Easter tree very well. Typically on Good Friday at three o'clock we plant our dead tree, usually in the front yard. And there it sits all weekend until the Easter Vigil, a symbol that reminds us all of Christ's death.

This tradition started shortly after Teddy's birth when I found myself with eight children and pregnant with the ninth and too tired to deal with five children, 8 and under, at the 3 o'clock stations of the Cross. Yet I wanted the day to be special for the children and not just be a holiday. It was Amanda, as I mentioned in the previous post, who told me about the tree. She found it in a book of Easter traditions, if I remember correctly. There were some prayers originally that we said as we prepared the tree. I need to see if I can find them again as I have a new crew that would appreciate them. So for many years while the older children went to the Stations of the Cross the younger ones and I planted our Easter Tree.

And yes - the tree above IS the resurrection of the tree below. And BTW, you can click on any of the photos on the blog and they will open up into a bigger picture.

(PS - if I have missed any glaring type os - please forgive me - I am running on about 3 hours of sleep!) Read more!

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Better Late Than Never!

Each year, we plant a dead tree which comes to live Easter Sunday. This was a lovely tradition that my oldest daughter, Amanda, is responsible for. I greatly missed her the first year she was not here to see the tree come to life. Check for pictures of our Easter Tree on Easter Monday. I might have the pics up Easter Sunday, but that is doubtful! Read more!

I feel OLD!

Oh so very old! Recently the children found a couple of rotary dial phones in a box of phones. A box of normal punch button, beep as you "dial", phones. I was filling in paper work, quietly minding my own business when I was suddenly surrounded by my children who plunked down not just any ordinary rotary dial phone, but the kind that one would find on a military ship. Heavy, metal and with an extra hook to keep the receiver from falling off.

Now I could have feigned ignorance. This military version truely handed me an out from having to admit to my antiquity. The children looked at me expectantly.

Finally one of them broke the silence and asked; "Umm - so how the heck did you call anyone on this?"

Apparently they felt almost as embarrased of their ignorance as I did of my knowledge. "Well," I said superioraly, shamelessly taking advantage of their embarrasment. "You stick your finger in the hole beside the number like this." And I inserted my finger in the hole beside the zero.
Then I dialed zero, or for those of you younger than 20, pulled the dial with my finger all the way around. The dial whispered a swooshing, burrring sound as it rolled back to zero when I released it.

"Cool!" one of them exclaimed and they pushed in closer.

"Show us how to dial, ummm, hey show us how to dial 911!", another one asked excitedly!

I happily acquiesced with a demonstration.
1 Swish
1 Swish

"Wow! Cool, Hey let's go practice calling people! Let's pretend to call Jenny first. " They snatched the phone off the counter and were gone chattering happily over their great find. "I think there's another one out there."
" Awesome - let's go get it!"

Now - just because I happen to know how to dial a rotary phone, no one had better ask me if we had T.V. when I was a kid - because we did, thank you very much. Read more!

Friday, April 14, 2006

Divine Mercy Novena

Today is the first day of the Divine Mercy Novena, click here to participate in it.

Click here for Stations of the Cross or for another version click here for children.

Blessings to you all! Read more!

Wednesday, April 12, 2006


Today as Hugo and I pulled out of the drive to head into the city to run errands I said my customary prayer for safety on the road and because Jonathan was suppose to drive home today in his Dad’s truck, I added him to my prayers. Suddenly I had a lurch in my stomach and I had a bad feeling, so I said an extra Our Father.

We were out longer than expected and when we hit heavy traffic heading home I said another prayer for safety, something I rarely feel the need to do more than once in a day. And again, I had that lurch in my stomach so once more I said an Our Father complete with the sign of the cross. Yet, I felt strongly I was not praying enough so I added some Hail Maries – just for Jonathan to get home safe and sound.

I called home to remind everyone to put some soup on so that they would be ready to leave for Mass and Confession at St Joe’s by the time we got home. I planned on staying home with the youngest ones so that others could relax as well as focus better on the Mass. Thirty minutes after getting home the little ones and I saw them off and settled down to enjoy the little cakes I had bought for treats to help make up for the disappointment of not getting to go out with the big kids. Once finished I sat there wondering what to do next with them, there was still a full two hours before bedtime and a two hour bath might leave them shriveled beyond return, even if I could keep them in there for that long.

I decided with the warm weather it would be a good idea to start learning some soccer skills and so we gathered a blanket for Elsa, dressed her in a fresh diaper and jammies and grabbed two balls and headed for the side field. It was not too long before Elsa was covered in grass, dried leaves and dandelion fur. Tired of digging flowers, sticks and leaves out of her mouth I suggested that we clean up and head over to the gas station to get some juice for Emma’s bedtime baba.

While I was waiting for eveyone to wash their faces and hands the phone rang and Teddy answered it. After a brief second he rushed to get me. “It’s Jonathan Mummy, and he says he has to talk to you quickly!”

That familiar lurch from earlier of the day attacked me again. I grabbed the phone and immediately asked, “What’s wrong?”

Quickly assuring me he was okay he proceed to, in my opinion, very calmly explain that he was probably not going to make it home as he was currently sitting on the side of the 85 squashed up against the median – facing the wrong way.

“I’m not sure what happened Madre, but all of a sudden only a mile or two out of Belmont the truck started to make a funny noise and then suddenly the steering wheel lurched out of my hand and the truck went into a spin. I spun around four, five maybe six times as I crossed the three lanes with cars desperately trying to avoid me. I sat there watching and wondering which one would hit me and was I going to die today?”

He continued, “I hit the median so I think the truck is a bit damaged there but Thank God for the median, or I would have continued into the traffic on the other side and have been killed for sure.“

Yes – I agree, he probably would have been. In fact it is nothing short of a miracle that in rush hour traffic going 65 miles an hour and spinning across three lanes that he was not hit and killed, before he struck the median.

He is spending the night with his sister and a few friends at the college and tomorrow we will figure out how to get him home, although every fiber of me wants to get into the car and drive up to the college so I can see with my own eyes that he is okay.

Praise be to God. Thank you Jesus, Thank you Mary! Thank you Jonathan’s Guardian Angels! Thank you!!!! I am still mum2twelve and so exceedingly grateful for that! This will be a Tridium to remember for us. We have been very blessed.

Read more!

Tuesday, April 11, 2006


Thank you Antonia! I found this link, Jesus Mosiacs, on her blog.
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Monday, April 10, 2006

Even animals know and achknowledge Christ's Presence in the Tabernacle

In 1995, during a visit to the US, Pope John Paul II, wanting some quiet time to pray, made an unannounced visit to a University Chapel in Baltimore.

As security protocol called for, sniff dogs were taken into the chapel ahead of John Paul II and they were lead up and down all the pews in the building. Finding all of them free of humans, the dogs were then led to the front of the chapel where they all stopped and pointed to the Tabernacle, indicating that they sensed a Human within. They would not leave the Tabernacle until called off by their handlers. At least ten security guards were witness to this.

When I read this post on our church’s bulletin board, a chill went up my spine. I will make sure that I pay more attention when I pass in front of our Tabernacle, which is just to the side of our church’s altar. I have, of late, gotten a bit careless and inattentive, taking Jesus’ Presence for granted. I am somewhat ashamed that it has taken a group of dogs to remind me of the reality of God's constant Presence in my church!

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Sunday, April 09, 2006

Prayer Request

My eldest daughter, Amanda, had a minor bicycle accident that ultimatly - was not quite as minor as she thought. A trip to the doctor and several x-rays revealed a cracked sternum and a fractured rib.

Please join us in prayer for a quick recovery without complications for Amanda. We will update as we know more. Read more!

Palm Sunday...

To read a lovely post on Palm Sunday - click here. Read more!

Saturday, April 08, 2006

The Seven Corporal Works of Mercy...

We DID it! With Gabriela's help, I was able to come up with another Mini Poll! Again, it is based on one of the subjects that was studied recently in their theology class.

I thought I would include this wonderful passage from Mathew as it is, I'm sure, part of the basis for the Coporal Works of Mercy. ( I was not around for class that day...)

Mt 25:34 "Then the King will say to those at his right hand, ’Come, O blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, ’Lord, when did we see thee hungry and feed thee, or thirsty and give thee drink?’ And the King will answer them, ’Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of my brethren, you did it to me."

Parents, I'm sure can easily answer in the positive as doing this almost daily for the first six. What mother is not giving a drink to hot thirsty fellow who has been playing ball hard out in the sun. Or providing dinner for her hungry brood? How many times a day does a mother change a diaper or help a toddler get dressed? What about the father who leaves the house, day after day, to drive to work through the miserable rush hour so as to provide a roof over the head of his family. Siblings too, should be able to answer in the positive. Do they not rescue a younger sibling from their crib after nap, or release them from the play pen in which they are imprisoned. Do they not also rush to draw a 'get well card' for Mama when she has a headache or to get a band aid for a fallen comrade?

As it is so often said, charity begins at home and by practicing the Corporal Works of Mercy within our family we are preparing our children to know how to sacrifice for others long after they have left home.

I hope you enjoy our new biweekly mini poll and that maybe it provides for some interesting dinner conversation as we challenge each other to think of what Corporal Works of Mercy we have done today.
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Sacramental Mini Poll Results

Answers Votes Percent
Rosary, including beads and the prayer. 27 23%
Holy Water 8 7%
Statues 3 3%
Scapular 1 1%
Holy Candles 6 5%
Icons 6 5%
Images of a Holy Person 1 1%
Crucifix 61 51%
Blessed Palms 0 0%
Medals 6 5%

I think that we had a very interesting mini poll the past two weeks. A large portion of readers voted and it was fun to watch the initial neck and neck race between the Rosary and the Crucifix. I have a hard time choosing one of the various sacramentals available as a favorite. I have many attachments for as many reasons. I do have a beautiful gold crucifix that I have worn for many years. It was the gift of my two oldest daughters gave me for Christmas one year. It has been with me through many births and teethed on by many babies. However, Elsa proved to be the last straw forcing me to retire this cruifix until I can replace the chain. In the meantime - my old metals on a sturdy silver chain has replaced it. Elsa is as delighted iwth them as hse was with the Crucifix and I have to admit, while I liked being able to reach up and touch my Crucifix just below my throat, I am enjoying my old friends again. On my chain hangs the medal of St Theresa the little flower with Mary of Mt. Carmel adorned with baby Jesus on her knee. Then there is St Benidict, and St Michael.

They are all good reminders for me to keep my eyes on Jesus and I like the idea that they are praying for me.

I am, again, brain dead and will remove this poll but possibly I will not have a replacement for it until next Saturday. I apologize but I am terribly worn down from health problems and sometimes - my brian just won't engage past third gear! If anyone has any ideas for the mini poll please feel free to post them in a comment section or email them to mum2twelve at Read more!

Here we go again!

We are under a severe storm watch, it is the remenants of what hit Tennesse last night. We are a little more prepared than the last time and already have our scanner on. All outdoor machinery is under anchor outside and the bathtubs filled with water in the event of loss of power.

The sky is rapidly growing dark and the wind is picking up. Thunder is rumbling ominously and a few strikes of lightening have already been seen. Prayers more than welcome. I will be powering down the computer for a few hours!

Blessings to everyone... stats on the mini poll will be posted after the storm passes through, all though this might be an all day event. Read more!

The joys of being a large family...

Every Friday this winter a very good freind has been traveling out from the city to teach a theology class to five of our children. As if that was not enough, she always brought lunch so as to give me a little break. Yesterday, she brought a plateful of sandwhiches and much to MY delight, brownies.

Wanting to leave the sandwhiches for his younger siblings my 19 year old son put some fries in the oven for himself. As he was waiting for them to cook he grinned at me.

"I put some fries on for Elsita and me." His grin widened. "I can't wait to watch her tiny fingers pinch together to pick up her fries, one at a time."

His joy at anticipating the feeding of his baby sister and his delight at the thought of watching her culinary habits filled me with immeasurable joy as well. Moments like this remind me, why having been open to life and raising such a large family was exactly the right thing for my husband and I to do. Read more!

Friday, April 07, 2006

Hey Look What I can do Mama!!

Not even a year old yet, and I am almost ready to cruise on just TWO feet Mummy!
I can't wait to be a BIG kid like everyone else!
(But Mama can!!!)
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Meet our newest neighbour!

We HOPE he is a rat snake!
Read more!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Bobby Schindler Speaks out.

To read his most recent statement click here.

Read more!


How I wish baby Orajel had been available in swab forms years ago? No more messy gel dripping down my fingers as I try to carefully dab the stuff on the suffering baby's swollen gums while I, instead, lather her tongue. Now, I simply break the tip off the q-tip and the gel conviently drips down the hollow tube to the swab on the bottom. Then I can accuratly dab this instant relief where ever I see an emmerging tooth or swollen gum. I follow this up with a dose of Motrin and we are ready for a relatively peaceful night.

Thank you Orajel and Motrin! And now Elsita and I will toddle off to bed and hopefully sleep (not counting mid night snacks to get Elsa though till breakfast) until 6:15 tomorrow morning!

(BTW, I only use this combo of Orajel and Motrin when it is clearly evident she is teething and can not fall asleep because of the pain. Years ago, when my third baby, now 20, was teething I was warned, by a medical practioner, against using Orajel too much as it could cause a thinning {or was it a thickening?} of the gums if overused. So, I have always kept its use to a minimum.) Read more!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Thank You Jesus!

We are all safe and sound! What a day and night it was yesterday! Yesterday morning started at about 4 am for me, when lightening began streaking the sky but there were no rumbles accompanying it until about 7 am. When we got up, we still needed full lights on.

Hugo was on the road and had been since 2:30 when he and our 9 year old son, Teddy, left for Virginia to pick up merchandise. By the time I had returned home from my errands, the sun was in full force and the humidity was high. I suspected that the warnings that kept singing across the radio interrupting my favorite talk show, Rush Limbaugh, were very true. A rather large storm was heading our way.

The afternoon wore on, and as I typed on my computer by the window I eventually noticed dark clouds on the horizon. Before I knew it, it was 6:30 and was rapidly growing dark despite the time change. By seven pm it was as black as midnight except for the pink sunset that was barely visible through the ominous clouds that were piled one on top the other. A sudden gust of wind struck the house causing it to shudder and the windows to rattle. I quickly saved a draft of my blog and got up to check on the merchandise outside.

As I stepped out of the garage, rain began to pelt me. Hugo, accompanied by Miguel, suddenly appeared. We all grabbed the tarp that had already blown partially off of one mountain of equipment. We placed items on top of the corners that were even heavier than what we were already using as anchors. Noah and Gabriela joined us and we all dashed over to a large piece of machinery that had also lost its tarp. We dodged triwalls as the wind picked them up and tossed them across the drive, their contents spewing at us and flying away into the back field. We stared in dismay as bags of paper cups lifted into the air and then joined the debris that was soaring through the yard.

Hugo and I both turned our faces to the angry sky and then looked at each other. What we saw left shivers down my spine and convinced us both that we were about to be hit by a tornado. As I joined the others around the large piece machinery I grabbed a tarp and I was knocked right off my feet. I did not notice the pain from it until later. I bent over and knelt on the ground as I struggled to hold a tarp in place while Miguel and Noah laboured to place a pallet over it to keep it down. I was peppered by dirt and small rocks as I clung to the tarp so I ducked my head down and closed my eyes, trying unsuccessfully to keep the dirt out of them. The others, facing me, were being hit by small sticks and other bits of debris in the back.

Suddenly the machine lurched towards me, causing Hugo to yell at us to give up. Only feet apart, and we had to yell at each other to be heard.

We made a dash for the house where Nathaniel was screaming in terror and the other children pale, as they stared at a huge metal tub blow away and Hugo's 24 foot truck rock in the wind. The plastic and blanket covering the broken window blew off and Hugo had to rush to put it back together as Miguel and I debated whether to bring the dogs in, or leave them in their dens on the porch. We threw chairs and toys in the house in hopes of preventing them from blowing through the glass doors.

While trying to calm the children, I grabbed a phone and called our neighbours who live in a small mobile home. They gratefully accepted my invitation to join us here. Thankfully they would only need to drive across the back field to get here. As Nathaniel continued to quake in fear, I asked him to help me make a pot of coffee for Mr. Edgerton in hopes that the distraction would help stop his shaking. He was truly terrified. I sat him on the counter and he helped me count tablespoons of coffee and then sat sentinel of the coffee pot with strict instructions to call me when it was ready. I thought if his attention was drawn elsewhere he might stop shaking.

As the coffee purred and dripped, the wind began to calm down and before it had quite finished brewing the Edgertons called and said they thought that the worse was passed and they would stay put. A good idea, if the storm had indeed passed, as the winds were still strong enough to cause branches be torn from the trees that lined the field.

Hugo left his scanner on in the kitchen as I quietly began supper preparations - grilled cheese sandwiches, chips and olives. The odour of the freshly brewed coffee somehow cheered me. Once supper was finally ready, the younger kids were more or less calm again. While we ate, we marveled at how quickly the storm had passed! Later we learned that the gusts of wind in our section of the county had been recorded to hit 63 miles an hour, just slightly below a category one hurricane. We were so grateful that the tornado that seemed so imminent had not come to pass. Thank you Jesus!

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Monday, April 03, 2006

As easy as that...

When we loaded up the van to head out and buy our groceries it was pouring, with the sky very dark and lightening flickering across it. The radio crackled and I adjusted my speed to about 10 miles less than the posted speed. As I crossed two accidents I realized I had been wise to do this.

Evently I got the majority of the errands out of the way and we pulled up to Walmart - last stop on the list. By now the sun was smiling hotly on us and the puddles were begining to steam. We grabbed a cart and loaded baby and toddler into it. Elsa balanced precariously for a while in the back of the cart and then held her arms out to Gabriela, who relented and scooped her up. Emma remained in the front and watched with delight as the cart began to fill up. However, some of her noted favourites were not among the items being dropped in.

"Mummy," she asked. "Tan we buy tum ice cweam?"

"No honey", I answered absently as my eyes searched the shelves for the next item on my list. Bethany quietly helped me look while Gabriela continued to grapple with the cute but heavy weight in her arms. Elsa was trying to grab anything and everything.

"Oh - but whyyyy not?"

"Because I don't have money for that today."

Emma tried again. "Well, Mummy, tan we buy tum pop?" (Soda for those of you in Rio Linda!)

"No honey", was my sympathetic but duplicated answer.

"Oh, but whyyy?"

"Hmmm honey? - Oh, because I don't have money for pop today."

"Oh!" She was quiet for a moment, and then she broke in on my thoughts again.

"Well, I will BUY you tum monies then, Mummy."

Ha - problem solved. No money, so I will just buy you some. Yet as amusing as it was - the very simplicity of her faith that a problem could so easily be solved reminded me of one of Jesus' most famous teachings: that only with the faith, or eyes, of a child could we understand and enter the Kingdom of God.

"I tell you the truth. If anyone does not believe in the kingdom of God like a child, he will never go in." Mark 10: 15
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Jesus, help me...

Jesus, today help me to see my talents, and not to judge my interior life to another’s exterior. I can not know that person’s interior struggles or the imperfections they work hard to hide, just as I strive to hide mine.

Instead, help me embrace my imperfections and accept them for the challenge they are; of growing closer to you as you support me. Do not let me fall into the pit of despair because I am flawed. Instead, grant me the graces to carry the cross that you have loving carved for ME.

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Saturday, April 01, 2006

Terri Schiavo died... year ago yesterday. I knew the anniversary of her death was coming up, but was unsure of the exact date, I am ashamed to say. The past week I have been thinking about Terri and wondering how to honour her memory on my blog.

Today I received a forward from a friend that was about the book Terri's parents have written. I believe that as a Catholic who claims to be pro-life I have a duty to buy this book so as to make a statement to the world that euthanasia is wrong. Abortion is wrong. The death culture we have found ourselves steeped in is wrong.

So how does my buying a book help? Well, if I can help shoot this book up onto the Best Sellers list then it will bring this book to the media's attention. If it catches the media's eye - it will be brought to our politicians' attention.

If we can, with our dollar, show that there is such an interest in this topic; that a book written by the parents of an innocent victim who was sentenced to death, climbs into first place on the best sellers list - hopefully the politicians will realize that a large segment of their voters care about the rights of the disabled population. And after all - it seems that for the majority of the politicians - it is all about the vote.

I have recently added blogsforTerri to my links on the right, just below the novena for the end of abortion. Below my daily posts you will now find a list of bloggers who have committed to assist in the fight for life by blogging, on a regular basis, about this precious right to life. Please join us by buying this book and/or by joining this group of bloggers. We must keep Terri's memory alive because, daily, innocent people are being starved to death HERE in the US.
Victims who can not speak for themselves and many, who do not have the advocates that Terri's family tried to be for her, are dying the same slow, tortuous death she died. We just are not hearing about it. Somehow, Terri's family was able to garner the medias' attention and so she died a public death - but there are others who need us to speak out for them. Let's all try to support Terri's parents in their fight to make Terri's horrible suffering something meaningful and never, never forgotten.

Click on the title of their book below to buy it from Amazon:

A Life That Matters: The Legacy of Terri Schiavo -- A Lesson for Us All. Read more!