Sunday, November 30, 2008

Following our Advent progress...


Well - we squeezed it all in today. Hugo left for a business trip with Nathaniel this after noon and we baked pies and then some gingerbread forms for 2 churches we hope to build. Then after a quick supper - we cleaned and tidied and did our advent readings, got the Jesse tree ornaments pasted on trees and each child broke a link off of his or her Advent chain.

I will include pictures as we progress in these projects! The first batch is of some of our chains which we constructed yesterday and of our Advent wreath, before the candles fell in. Tuesday I will head out and buy some candle holders. This happens EVERY year - my candles collapse. It is time to for some solid candle holders! Move over playdough... you are about to be replaced.

(These are two chains attached at the red links - which is for Christmas Eve. I attached them with a straight pin, simply to make them look more decorative in the windows where we hung them. I will continue to post pictures of this pair so you can watch them grow shorter!)
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The wreath... before the calamity hit....






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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Playing with Static...

E L E C T R I C I T Y!


(I never know just what I am going to find when I check the gallery of photos on my cell phone!)

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Friday, November 28, 2008

Thank you notes...

I am at the beginning of a search for the perfect set of thank you notes to send out to the various people who have surprised with us with lovely gifts for the baby, and my search brought me to this little article on do's and don'ts of thank you notes. In this article the reader is asking about a wedding shower, but it was the last line of the answer that had me chuckling. CLICK here, if you would like to enjoy a light smile as well. Read more!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

An answer for a comment ...


...that was left today below the Jesse Tree Reminder post by CP. CP pointed out that there are more ornaments/symbols to be put on the Jesse Tree than there are days in Advent this year and she wondered how best to handle that. I had noticed that as well. Originally I had decided to drop a few, picking the ones that are most relevant to the fast approaching nativity from the last 5 or 6 symbols.

Then as I contemplated my answer to CP's query, it struck me that this was a good teaching moment as to how the number of days in Advent change from year to year and that this 'calendar' of dates is based on starting the Advent season the fourth Sunday before Christmas and hence the difference in the number of days.

Therefore I have decided that on the last days of Advent, I will double up the symbols that we place on our tree each day so that we end up with the nativity symbol being placed on the tree on Christmas Eve. Part of my reasoning was that since this is a "family tree' it was not right to drop any of the family off of it. This decision will also be reflected in my daily postings so that the symbol, its brief explanation and the accompanying reading will be doubled those last exciting days as we await the rebirth of our Saviour and Lord - the precious Baby Jesus.

I hope some of you will join us as we travel through the centuries reflected through this family tree that represents the original period of Advent - or waiting of the Messiah. And whether you join us or not - I have an important question - do you have your candles yet? I also have good news - I found my wreath! My regular readers know I have to hunt for it every year!


(Jesse tree picture was found here.) Read more!

Christmas Tree Poll

  • Thanksgiving weekend
  • Christmas Eve
  • Second week in Advent
  • First week in Advent
  • Fourth week in Advent
  • Third week in Advent
Read more!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Introducing a website...

...that I recently discovered. Brimful of Curiosities, I discovered it when we had our first giveaway on our blog for the book and Brimful of Curiosities uncovered our little event and posted it on her weekly announcements of free giveaways. But the author of this blog also writes book reviews. This week she reviewed a new book by Margaret Wise Brown (author of the famous Good Night Moon!) I am adding her to my side bar - just need to figure out what category to put her in - fabourite blogs & links I guess. At any rate, I have subscribed so I get an email announcing anything new on her blog so I can stay up to date on any new contests she is announcing - and did I already mention that all of them are free! A good place to hang out through out the week and see if I can win something! Check it out! Oh - and click here to read her review of M. W. Brown's new book and maybe even win a copy as she has three to giveaway! Good luck and may the best reader win! Read more!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Christmas is coming...

... and is clearly on Elsa's mind as evidenced by the following conversation between Elsa (3) and her older sister Bethany who is 10.

Elsa: Is Christmas everyone's birthday?

Bethany: No - it is just Jesus' birthday.

Elsa - sounding and looking rather distressed "Oh no - does that mean only He gets all the presents?"



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Monday, November 24, 2008

A poll just for fun.

  • All year!
  • We start Thanksgiving weekend.
  • Whenever the radio starts playing it.
  • Not until Christmas Eve.
  • Sometime during Advent.
  • Not sure, it's different every year.


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Sunday, November 23, 2008

GASP! Its how many days to # 13?

FOURTY SIX days... yes, that is D A Y S!!! The other evening, I glanced at my igoogle home page and thought 'wow only 46 days to Christmas' but then caught the actual title of the time ticker I had chosen and it was 46 days until baby to be!! (It was 36 days to Christmas.)

I almost fell off my chair - which in my condition would not be the smartest thing I could do right now. Fourty six DAYS??? Now of course - that is assuming she will be on time - which she most likely will not be, so I am trying to focus on mid January as the due date - but still.

You see, here is my to do list:

  • Set up baby hammock...... check
  • Find cartons of new born clothes .... check
  • Go through and pull out OODLES of new born baby girl jammies and church outfits..... half a check.(Last two babies were born in Spring and early Fall -which down here means very warm to almost hot temperatures - so there was little fit for the winter season.)
  • Return cartons to storage......
  • Buy diapers.......
  • Prepare changing area.....
  • Buy baby laundry supplies......
  • Buy baby bathing supplies.....
  • Locate stroller and clean up......
  • Locate baby swing and test that it still works....
  • Buy Mylicon drops because ALL of my babies suffer from reflux varying from mild to severe....
Now ask me about my Advent and Christmas list and you get a very different story. I am almost completely ready for this upcoming joyous season, but clearly I am in denial about a new baby about to arrive on the scene.

FOURTY SIX DAYS???


UPDATE: I have tried THREE times to correct boen to born (hope it shows with an "r" and not an e here!). However blogger has decided it will not allow me to write newborn above.... Argh!
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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Now you see her and...




NOW YOU DON'T!!



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Friday, November 21, 2008

A little Canadian Humour...

A Little Canadian Humor,
Here is what Jeff Foxworthy has to say about Canucks.
(To be honest I had never heard of this comedian until one of my daughters forwarded this to me.)



If your local Dairy Queen is closed from
September through May,
You may live in Canada

If someone in a Home Depot store
Offers you assistance and they don't work there,
You may live in Canada.

If you've worn shorts and a parka at the same time,
You may live in Canada.

If you've had a lengthy telephone conversation
With someone who dialed a wrong number,
You may live in Canada.


If 'Vacation' means going anywhere
South of Detroit for the weekend,
You may live in Canada .

If you measure distance in hours,
You may live in Canada

If you know several people
Who have hit a deer more than once,
You may live in Canada .

If you have switched from 'heat' to 'A/C'
In the same day and back again,
You may live in Canada .

If you can drive 90 km/hr through 2 feet of snow
During a raging blizzard without flinching,
You may live in Canada .

If you install security lights on your house and garage,
But leave both unlocked,
You may live in Canada .

If you carry jumpers in your car
And your wife knows how to use them,

You may live in Canada .

If you design your kid's Halloween costume
To fit over a snowsuit,
You may live in Canada .

If the speed limit on the highway is 80 km --
You're going 90 and everybody is passing you,
You may live in Canada .

If driving is better in the winter
Because the potholes are filled with snow,
You may live in Canada .

If you know all 4 seasons:
Almost winter, winter, still winter,
And road construction,
You may live in Canada .

If you have more miles
On your snow blower than your car,
You may live in Canada .

If you find 2 degrees 'a little chilly',
You may live in Canada .

If you actually understand these jokes,
And forward them to all
Your Canadian friends & others,
You definitely live(or have lived) in Canada .

And to these I need to add my own:

If someone stepped on your foot

And you apologized because after all

Your foot was obviously in the way...

Then you are a Canadian or, as we are sometimes called,

A Cannuck!





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Thursday, November 20, 2008

And the winnah is....

Thank you to everyone who participated in the first of my monthly giveaway contests and without further delay I am happy to announce that the winner of Hear My Voice, A Children’s Translation of Gospel Readings of the Catholic Mass for 2009 , is ..... drum roll please...

Cathy of Virginia

If you were not lucky enough to win the book - please feel free to click on the advertisement on the left sidebar and you will be taken directly to the site where it can be purchased. I do earn a small percentage for each sale made from my site, so in purchasing this book you are not only getting a lovely book to help you prepare your children for Sunday Mass, but you are also supporting two small Catholic family business ventures!
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Listening...

'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him." Mathew 25:28-29

This Sunday in Mass the gospel was Mt 25:14-30 and as our Deacon began to expound on this idea of talents and possible of loss through miss use or lack of use of them.

Emma sat up straight and I heard a little gasp from her. My head swiveled in her direction to see what ailed her and her eyes looking like a little owls were wide and clapped on my face.

"Did he mean that Mummy? Was he joking?"

"The Deacon? I asked. "Did he mean we can lose our talents if we don't use them?" is that what you mean?

"Yes!" she whispered back

"Yes he did mean that, if we don't use the gifts God gives us - we will lose them."

Her breath drew in sharply and her face grew more anxious. "But Mummy, I am too young! I don't know my talents yet!"

I smothered my smile and settled down to an act of mental bi-location while I kept one ear on Deacon's solid homily and at the same time tried to quietly whisper to Emma what it means for a six year old to use her talents. I was not too successful at the bi-location part but while I missed a good deal of Deacon's homily, I was able to make use of a great teaching moment and best of all, I learned that my six year old is actually listening to the homily - at least some of the time!
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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

An awesome giveaway on another blog!

PEGGY! My dear friend Peggy F. here in NC - this post is dedicated to you and Holly because the items featured in this giveaway at the Dirty Shirt seems like the perfect gift for YOU and Holly - 'cause if Holly could fall asleep and stay asleep all night - I know that would be the best gift you could get this Christmas. Am I right or am I right?

So whether you are my good friend Peggy F. or another reader with a sleepless baby - get yourself over to the Dirty Shirt and check out her review and giveaway contest for one of Cloud B's products.

And to be honest - if I do not win one of the items, I am going to buy of the night lights for my 10 year old daughter who has a very hard time quieting all her thoughts once she snuggles down into bed. I think that watching the changing constellations would be a great distractions. Heck - I could use one of those some nights! Read more!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Contest Reminder...

Just a quick reminder that the contest I am running this month ends at 1 AM of the 19th - or in other words, an hour after midnight tonight! So if you have not yet left a comment in the in the post announcing the contest - be sure to do so soon. Don't miss out on the chance to win a great book - just in time for Advent.



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A birthday with a special gift.

Do any of you remember the disastrous results of my attempt to hide the container of hot chocolate that I had purchased in honour of Benjamin's 12th birthday that was coming up in the following months? We had purchased it at Tim Horton's, our favourite coffee shop when traveling up north on business as Benjamin is always asking if we can bring a tin home when we are up there.

I was quite sad that I was not going to have a container of this to surprise him with for his birthday when a reader suddenly wrote to me and asked if I was open to her mailing me a container of this special hot chocolate. It seems she, her husband and boys had been in Ohio for a quick trip and decided to check out Tim Hortons as I have mentioned our love for Tim Horton's coffee frequently on my blog. While there her husband, remembering my plight, suggested they pick up a tin of the much desired chocolate. She even thoughtfully offered to mail it to a local church if I felt more comfortable with that arrangement.

Speculation began in earnest when the mysterious package arrived and I explained it was a gift from a reader for one of the up coming children's birthdays. As a birthday came and went without the mysterious gift being presented the process of elimination continued with great mirth.

Finally it was October - Benjamin's special month. After he opened the gift and was astonished to see the cherished container of Hot Chocolate along with a cool bag of marshmellows shaped as baseballs, footballs etc Noah, his older brother by a year and a bit, got busy and made him a birthday breakfast which consisted of the following:




using my Tim Horton's mug, of course. What else would you serve it in!

Thank you D. and your lovely husband for your incredible thoughtfulness.

(Photo credit Noah using my cellphone)

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Monday, November 17, 2008

32 weeks and still growing


This little baby in the ultra sound is at 32 weeks gestation which is just about where our little baby is. So amazing! She weighs about 4 lbs now and is about 16 inches long. Pretty much a small doll right now. Christmas is just ahead of us and I am so grateful to have this time of Advent to help me have something else to focus on besides the aches and pains that accompany this last trimester as God puts the final touches on His masterpiece that Hugo and I are so blessed to have a hand in bringing to life.

I am praying that all will go well. I have many fears as I face labour for the first time in over six years. Elsa was a planned c-section that became an emergency c-section. I am having to really focus on my diet as I had a scare with pre-eclampsia symptoms last week when I got careless and slacked off on my protein and water intake. So now I am having to really pay attention and make sure I keep to a minimum of 70 gms of protein daily and a least 4 twenty oz bottles of water. I have found it easy to keep on top of the protein - much easier than I thought it would be. However the water, oh - now there is a challenge. However, when I stay on top of these two requirements my blood pressure stays down as does the swelling and I don't have the strong contractions I was having.

But keep me on your prayers please as the Advent season approaches with all of its pleasures and stresses! Please especially pray for peace of mind as I struggle to just completely leave the next two months in the hands of our Lord!

(Photo Credit ivillage.com)
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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Fall Fun



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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Jesse Tree Reminder....

We are only two weeks from the first Sunday in Advent and so I am posting a reminder that if you are hoping to follow our daily Jesse tree posts this Advent, so if you haven't already, it is more than time to gather the materials you will be using.

At the time of writing this reminder, I am planning to simply create paper symbols for the children to colour and make a large paper green tree that children can add their symbols to. Or perhaps I will have them each create a smaller tree - as a bedroom door or window decoration. At any rate - it will not be a permanent creation made of wood or, say, felt. Not this year - maybe next year!

So whatever type of material you are planning to use - start gathering it now. Also you might want to start hunting down your wreath and buy your candles. I know where my candles are - but, as is usual, I am not so sure where the wreath is!


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Friday, November 14, 2008

Help is needed...

Please add your prayers for this family - recently converted to the Catholic faith. Here is their story but to read about why this dad of 12 is in the hospital and how you can help - click here.



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Scribbit's Apple Turnovers!

I have been hankering to try this recipe ever since I saw it over on Scribbits Blog, a blog I read every day now! However, I am going to try it with cherry pie filling and no cardamon spice! I'll let you know how it goes - especially since I can not stand for more than about 3 minutes at a time without having to sit!

Foolishly or bravely I am not sure - but I am going to engage my two littlest ones as my helpers. I think as long as I let them have the occasional stir and lick, they will happily gopher their way through the three recipes I hope to make this afternoon.

I have very little energy and figure I might as well sit and stir some yummy baking as just sit and just go stir crazy!

UPDATE:

No turn overs! I discovered we are almost out of milk and do not have any where near enough butter. Not sure which I am more - disappointed or relieved? I have been hankering over these turnovers since I first read the recipe on Scribbit's site but the recipe is designed for a bread machine - of which I have two. But... neither of them have turned out decent loaf of bread in forever and so they are packed away... somewhere....

So I have re-written the recipe as I think it might work sans the machine and for the type of yeast I use which needs to be allowed to rise separately in liquid.

Now if sometime before the baby is born and I:
1) come across one of my bread machines
and/or
2) have sufficient energy to try a recipe that requires my standing at the stove stirring milk - I will try the recipe. Until then - I must simply be satisfied with pining over them.

In the meantime I have four loaves of pumpkin bread baking and the ingredients to the pineapple bread sitting on the counter - waiting for my second wind. In my pregnant dazed state - I mistakenly used a HUGE can of pumkin instead of a smaller one and had to do a double recipe. But no worries - my gang can polish off four loaves as quickly as they can two!
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Double Birthday

We discovered sometime earlier this month that one of our parish priests has the same birthday as my husband. So we had a double birthday this month! Here are some pictures of the cakes we enjoyed earlier in the month and also one of Hugo with Lydia at the birthday dinner John and Jenny had at their home for just Hugo and I, Jonathan and his lovely new girlfriend.

Hugo with adorable, squeezable Lydia snoozing on his shoulder. This is referred to as the "tough job" in our household and I noticed that Jenny has carried the term over into her family! Everybody wants a crack at the "tough job'!



Hugo's cake.



Father's cake!


The children and I bought Hugo a radio controlled dragonfly for his birthday and he and they have really been enjoying it on the weekends in the parking lot next to us.

We had a birthday last month that brought a really neat gift from one of my readers, but I have "misplaced" the pictures on one of my many computers.... So as soon as I find them I will create a pictorial post of the special occasion!

PS - if you have not yet submitted a comment to November's give away contest below, be sure to do so. Don't miss a chance to win a copy of this book of Sunday's Gospel readings Hear My Voice, A Children’s Translation of Gospel Readings of the Catholic Mass for 2009 - and just in time for Advent! Read more!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Mylicon Gas Relief drops recalled







Infant Gas-Relief Drops Recalled

Johnson & Johnson has recalled 12,000 bottles of Mylicon Infant Dye-Free Gas-relief drops due to the possibility that some bottles may contain metal
fragments. The recalled drops come in one ounce plastic bottles and were
sold over-the-counter on or after October 5, 2008.The lot numbers of the
drops are SMF007 and SMF008, and the numbers can be found on the bottom of
the recalled boxes or on the lower left side of the bottle's sticker.

To go directly to the manufacturer's site click here.



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A Give Away for Advent!


Good Morning!

I have a very happy announcement to make!

I am sponsoring a giveaway - something I am hoping will become a monthly activity. I already have a gift lined up to give away for December as well as the wonderful gift that is to be given this week.

Hopefully some, if not all, of my readers have read the review on the book that is being advertised on my blog - Hear My Voice, A Children’s Translation of Gospel Readings of the Catholic Mass for 2009 , which was written by Jonathan Stampf and illustrated by Robert Conrad.

Here is how the contest will work. Leave a comment in the comment section of this post and with your first name and an email address so that I can contact you should you win the give away contest. Feel free to convert the @ sign with the word at to help reduce the possibility of email spam. You will be assigned a number based on your spot on the list of comments. So if you are the fifth person to leave a comment you will be assigned the number five and so on. (Oh, and there is only one comment per person!)

At the end of the seven days of accepting comments/names for the contest (which will remain open until 1 am of the 19th.) The winner will be emailed on the morning of the 19th and I must hear back within 48 hours so that I can provide Mr. Stampf with the winner's shipping information so that he can mail the book to the winner. I will announce the winner after I have been contacted by the wining reader.

So hurry up and leave a comment on this post and pass the word around about this great freebie that will be a wonderful addition to our upcoming Advent preparations. And if you haven't read the review of the book yet - be sure to read it over here.


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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Momentous Events

We all experience momentous events in our lives. The meeting of one's eternal partner in life, the birth of a child, or the passing on of a loved one are some of the more significant ones.

But then there is the day a child moves out of the nest and on with their adult life. This day is no less significant than the day they were born as it is in a sense another birthday - cutting of the umbilical cord and many times - more painful than that day of physical birth. For the parent that is.

You want nothing more for your child to grow, learn and gain in life experience but when a child is ready to move on - it is one of those momentous events indeed. And it is no less so for the younger siblings as they watch the older brother or sister pack their belongings and discuss such things as their rental deposit - the turning on of utilities and such.

Six year old Emma, typical of all small children, has large ears and was taking in all the details. As she determined that Miguel, her twenty one year old brother, was needing to budget carefully so as to be able to make his deposit in time to be able to move into his new home on the 18th of this month - she rushed upstairs and came back to me clutching her birthday envelope.

"Mummy, I want to give my six dollars to Miguel so he can move out."

It was not that she was anxious for her sibling to leave, but simply the complete generosity of her young heart - ready to give all her birthday money to her brother - if that would help him.

And this too was a momentous moment - a moment of complete filial love from one child for another. An act of the typical generosity often experienced in families where God is first in the heart of the family.

Miguel was greatly moved and his cheeks flushed as he thanked his little sister for the sacrifice that she so willingly want to make on his behalf. He convinced her to keep this money, but I will help her to use some of it to buy him a house warming gift as I know that this act will give her great joy; and I do not wish to deny her the gift of giving.


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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veteran's Day

God Bless our Troops.
Past
Present
&
Future!




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Blush...

I must be the only pregnant woman in the world that can actually manage to put her maternity pants on backwards ( the kind without a panel - but still!) and wear them on a date with her husband to the movies, and not be able to figure out why they suddenly felt to so tight and uncomfortable until it was bedtime. And only then as she changed into her p.j.s did she notice the tag was in the front, not in the back, causing that very dim light bulb masquerading as her brain to light up! Read more!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Enjoying the pets...

Neena is just growing cuter and cuter - doncha think?


Sam is a real southerner and getting ready for the colder months. Do you like his colour scheme?


Photo credits as well as fashion accessories - Benjamin Bear!



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Sunday, November 09, 2008

A SCANNER!!!

My husband brought home the scanner from the office - where it had been installed for my use. As I am not longer the official secretary of Surplus Equipment Solutions - I have barely darkened the hallways of the warehouse for months! I am sure the warehouse has missed me more than I have missed it!

But now I can begin to share old photos and new drawings of and by those whom I love! What fun we will have with this aspect being added to the blog again. I have many children who love to draw and they all have a witty sense of humour which you can now enjoy once more.

In celebration of this new addition to my computer corner in the living room - I have added --- to todays postings.


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Saturday, November 08, 2008

Three aunts and a niece





Sigh - still asking you to ignore the Read more!

Friday, November 07, 2008

Borrowing time....

I am pregnant. This is a fact I simply cannot ignore. Nor can I ignore that with pregnancy, especially at the age of fourty-six, brings with it fatigue. Add in to the mix the homeschooling of 8 children - yes the youngest is only three but she thinks she is being home schooled - which makes it the same as! She needs her time with her big book and crayons, her poetry time not to mention her cuddles. Throw in the effort to save money on bread by baking it. Then include with all of this - the starting of yet another new business with my husband. And it all adds up to a huge amount of exhaustion.
So I am borrowing a little time by posting another little article I wrote for my audition for the tea blog. This one had to a very short rendition of the health benefits of tea. I really enjoyed doing the research and was kind of sad when I did not get the job. However - that is no reason you, my loyal readers, should not get the benefit of my research so without further delay - here it is.

In a world filled with continuous warnings regarding our health and what we should consume, or not consume, is there any particular drink or food item we can feel safe in imbibing? I believe the general consensus is that tea, whether it be black, green or white, is not only safe to drink but actually offers us health benefits.

Is one of these three choices more healthy than the other? Let us start with the best known tea which is black. Black tea has been the choice of the majority of tea drinkers since Princess Catherine, Queen Consort of Charles II, introduced it to the English aristocracy in the 1600s. Until recently most research on the benefits of tea were focused on green tea which is known to contain valuable antioxidants. However, new research has determined that the compounds, also offer health benefits similar to those of the green tea. And with all the warnings against enjoying any of our vices, be they downing a bag a chips while ensconced on the couch watching a late night movie or adding too much salt to our favorite dishes, what can be better than to know that our favorite drink is helping and not harming us.

While both the green tea and the black originate from the plant Camellia sinensis, it is how they are aged that accounts for their difference in flavor and looks, and so, it seems, their health benefits. Green tea is steamed or pan fried immediately upon harvesting and thus retains its lighter look when brewed. However, black tea is fermented causing the compound epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg) which green tea is loaded with, to be changed into the other compounds, theaflavins and thearubigens. These, we are just learning, offer us similar benefits to EGCg.

As if the benefits of oxidants was not reason enough to drink tea, recent studies completed in the Netherlands, are showing a correlation between tea drinking and the possible prevention of strokes. And in a society where stress is reported to be high, this brings a whole new meaning to the idea of sitting back and enjoying a relaxing cup of tea!

Resources used:

http://chinesefood.about.com/

http://www.tea.co.uk/





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Thursday, November 06, 2008

Prayer request!

This little monkey! What a naughty, naughty baby she is! Two weeks ago - she was not only in a transverse position but she was also posterior. No wonder my back was aching so much, even with the chiropractic visits. A couple of days of the exercises my practitioner suggested and she flipped. She became horizontal and it seemed even vertex - or head down. She also turned towards my back and oh -I had a lovely two weeks with all of that pressure gone from her pressing against my back with every little twist and turn she made. I celebrated by making bread every two or three days!

But gradually I noticed the location of her hiccups were moving... upwards. Towards my belly button. I tried really hard to ignore this reality, but have finally had to face the truth - she is now breech - or head up...

While transverse babies cannot be delivered naturally, just ask Elsa my 12th baby and first c-section, breech babies can. However - that does not mean I want to deliver a baby in the breech position. I mean - let's not even go there and just say we did! Labour is painful enough!

So, as I begin my excercies again and patiently await better behaviour from this baby, I humbly ask for your prayers that this little one slips back HEAD DOWN and STAYS down until she is delivered.
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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A new favourite...

... just found. Have you ever seen the What Every Catholic Knew blog? Well - if you haven't, pop over there and read a few encouraging and invigorating posts.

I am adding this blog to my side bar!



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Its really difficult

... not to have the energy I need to distract myself from the sad sorry miserable state I am in. If I were not 31 weeks pregnant and been awake since 4 am stressing over the anger I feel, I would have the energy I need to bake some delicious pumpkin bread and then I could enjoy the heart burn such a delightful snack would give me.

I should be teaching phonics, and or baking bread... but I am just too tired and distracted.

Guess I will try a few Hail Maries!
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A call to action

Please share this vital information with others - via blog, email or word of mouth.

To learn more about this teleconference call being co-ordinated by several Pro life groups - such as 40 Days For Life - click here.



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Oh Dear....

I would like to offer cool, wonderful inspiring thoughts about the outcome of the election.

I can't.

However, Margaret of Minnesota is thinking along the same lines as I am according to yesterdays post.

"Look, we’ve got to cling to something and if it’s not guns than it should definitely be religion. This is what’s getting me through today—specifically, the knowledge that we know the end of the story and tomorrow’s new president will not change it.

My focus, then, is on my God. It’s on the state of my soul…and it’s on my family."

This is why yesterday I did not listen to the radio and why I did not watch the election results. They would be what they would be, whether I suffered over their slow revelation or not. This is why I will not watch or listen to it for some time to come.

I am sad and depressed and not a little angry over the results. So 100 % of my thoughts and efforts the next weeks and months will be in praying for my family. It is all that is left to do right now. Pray and put one's faith in God's mercy. And God HAVE mercy on us!

This country has elected a pro death, pro infanticide president. God have MERCY!

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Some happy news...

...that I came across today as I searched for peaceful and joyful positive blogs. Kinda needing help in focusing my heart and mind in that direction.

Here is the touch of fresh air I discovered on this rather cloudy day, both literally and figuratively.




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Writing this on Tuesday....


... and because I experienced more than my share of angst over this upcoming election, as has had my husband, we both agreed to turn the radio, t.v. and Internet sources off for the day. So we have no idea what is going on with the exit polls and life is more peaceful as a result.

We are legal aliens and as such can not vote; although our 21 year old son was approached and encouraged to register to vote - even after he explained he was Canadian an not yet a citizen. Then he explained his views on the Candidates up for election and the woman walked away disgusted with him- no longer interested in registering him illegally. Maybe if he had been pro choice and pro Obama she would have tried harder.

So while we could not vote - we did what little we could. Both Hugo and I posted information on the candidates on various blogs, political and otherwise. We shared this information with friends leaning towards Obama. We prayed. We participated in Father Corapi's rosary and we attended daily Mass as part of our prayer campaign. Our son volunteered at the GOP office and my husband drove him back and forth (as our son's car died a month ago) and my husband and I made a meal for the office last week. One of our daughters baby sat for a neighbour so she could vote. And lastly we attended our parish's prayer vigil today. And as posted on Behold Your Mother we can only pray for a positive outcome from our prayers while also realizing the following: "God can and does answer prayer -- including the prayers of His saints -- though not always in the way we want Him to. We cannot manipulate heaven with our rosaries and lit candles, forcing the hosts of heaven to smooth out the bumps in the road ahead of us. All we can do is ask for their company to fortify us as we march along. As we prepare for the upcoming election, it's important to keep in mind that -- as much as we might want Him to -- God does not stuff ballot boxes. He gave us free choice and expects us to use reason and a rightly formed conscience to make those choices."

I have at times, felt extremely depressed over that comment, (I really wanted him to stuff those boxes for us!) but then my 17 year old daughter said this morning - "Well, God will not force His will on us. But He can make good out of something bad, if only we let Him." My job over the next while, should Obama win, will be to allow God to make something good out of the bad that I fear happening if Obama wins, beginning with allowing God to take my fear!

So who will have won by the time you read this - I do not yet know. I know I am praying for a pro life win. And - we have already begun to make new plans for our life- regardless of who wins. We are making some changes in our life and details about this will come out over the next month or two. Please pray for us. It will be challenging but I think fun and exciting. Nothing like starting a new approach to your life while also awaiting the arrival of a new life!

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Tuesday, November 04, 2008

This is what we were doing today at our parish...








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She had a motive for being so persistent.

The other day - I had my weekly chiropractic appointment. Hugo and I were ready to leave for it when Elsa appeared with pleading eyes and a determined twist to her mouth. She wanted to go with us. "Pleeeease!" she begged. "I want to tum with you!"

Hugo was willing to sit with her in the van as she was in no way dressed for public viewing. Not only did a single colour adorning her not match - it was evident she had been wearing this outfit all day and through several meals and snacks. So Hugo strapped her into her car seat and we just made it in time for my appointment. Typically I am in and out of their in less than fifteen minutes. Murphy's law though came into play and I waited at least a good twenty to twenty-five minutes before even being treated.

As I checked out, I remembered that I did not have my wallet so I stepped out to the van to borrow Hugo's bank card. The van was gone. I was able to reach him on the cell phone. Apparently he had taken my admonition that Elsa was under no circumstances to step foot in public, dressed as she was, and Elsa had needed the bathroom so he would be back momentarily.

As I saw our van pull into the vacant spot just in front of the office, I stepped out to grab the card from Hugo. I was astonished to see Elsa strapped back in her car seat even knowing tat she was not going to be allowed out of the van either! Hugo explained she had been especially determined to come back with him.

Well, apparently my astonishment was no less than Elsa's when she saw me. "But where is duh baby?" she asked with great disappointment. It seems she equated my seeing the doctor with the baby being born. No wonder she had been so extra determined to come back. I guess she wanted to be the first to see the new baby.





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Novena Reminder from Father Corapi

Last day... if you have not joined in - it is not too late to add your please to God's loving ear.

DAY NINE

I strongly urge every one of you to make a Novena and pray the Rosary to Our Lady of Victory between October 27th and Election Day, November 4th. Pray that God’s will be done and the most innocent and utterly vulnerable of our brothers and sisters will be protected from this barbaric and grossly sinful blight on society that is abortion. No woman, and no man, has the right to choose to murder an innocent human being.


May God grant us the wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and counsel to form our conscience in accordance with authentic Catholic teaching, and then vote that well-formed Catholic conscience.

God Bless You

Fr. John Corapi

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Monday, November 03, 2008

Family stickers....

I came across a blog with a cool family sticker at the bottom of their blog and started to play around with one of my own... Now this was a large family - they are expecting their eighth. So it never dawned on me that maybe my family would be TOO big to include everyone.

But it is! So I played a little more with it and then had a brilliant idea - I know I will make TWO stickers. One for the family still at home and one for the children that live away from home. That was working - until I posted it straight to blogger.... only to discover it would not fit on the side bar... And now the HTML was gone - forever. I would have to rebuild my family.

Well - I would just have to do it another day as my yeast was proofed by then and I neede to start adding flour to it.

But if you want to see if you have better luck than me just click here. Check back later - maybe I will have had some more spare time to play and will have a little family sticker down at the bottom of my blog - its the only area it is likely to fit!
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Novena Reminder from Father Corapi

Not too late to join in!

DAY EIGHT

I strongly urge every one of you to make a Novena and pray the Rosary to Our Lady of Victory between October 27th and Election Day, November 4th. Pray that God’s will be done and the most innocent and utterly vulnerable of our brothers and sisters will be protected from this barbaric and grossly sinful blight on society that is abortion. No woman, and no man, has the right to choose to murder an innocent human being.


May God grant us the wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and counsel to form our conscience in accordance with authentic Catholic teaching, and then vote that well-formed Catholic conscience.

God Bless You

Fr. John Corapi

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Sunday, November 02, 2008

Maternity leave...

Like so many mums who are expecting I have signed up for a few automated emails that tell me little facts about the baby, week by week. I enjoy seeing the estimated weight and length and learning other small details about the baby's development.

One list has a to do list for the mum to be, this weeks is the following:

YOUR WEEK 31 TO-DO LIST

Worried about taking months away from your job? Or fantasizing about it? Either way, we've got all you need to know about maternity leave right here.

Hmmm, as a stay at home mum I guess I would approach either Hugo, or maybe the children, about my maternity leave rights? Any suggestions?

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Novena Reminder from Father Corapi

DAY SEVEN

I strongly urge every one of you to make a Novena and pray the Rosary to Our Lady of Victory between October 27th and Election Day, November 4th. Pray that God’s will be done and the most innocent and utterly vulnerable of our brothers and sisters will be protected from this barbaric and grossly sinful blight on society that is abortion. No woman, and no man, has the right to choose to murder an innocent human being.


May God grant us the wisdom, knowledge, understanding, and counsel to form our conscience in accordance with authentic Catholic teaching, and then vote that well-formed Catholic conscience.

God Bless You

Fr. John Corapi


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Saturday, November 01, 2008

Baked Spaghetti

The other night I was a little desperate as to what we were going to do for dinner. My back, as everyone knows has been causing me problems and so I had not gone out yet this week to get groceries. So I went to the pantry and stared at the cupboards - feeling a little like Mrs Hubbard. However, I found more than a bone and gathered up the tomatoes, a single onion and a box of pasta. I then threw together the following sauce and, in short order, the whole family was filing by the kitchen door sniffing and asking what was that delicious smell. I had the sauce simmering in about 20 minutes and left the rest of the meal in the capable hands of one of my older children. I had been baking most of the day and my back really wanted to rest. When my two teen aged daughters and I were coming up for a menu for the upcoming week - we decided to use this recipe to make baked Spaghetti. The only change my children suggested after sampling the baked spaghetti was that I make a more sauce. Next time around I will try four cans and leave the spices as they are and see if they are happy with the results or if I need to adjust the spices to accommodate the increased volume. If any adjustments need to be made I will include them here.

Sauce:

2 medium large onions (or about 4 cups/ 900 ml diced)
2 table spoons garlic
fry in 4 tbsp olive oil on medium heat (8 on my stove) until translucent

Add the following spices

1 tsp parsley
1/2 tsp thyme leaves
1/2 tsp crushed rosemary
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp celery salt

Add 3 cans of diced (or stewed) tomatoes (of the 28 oz variety) One of these cans typically has basil added. Once I add the three cans - I soup out the basil - but one could leave them in if they wished. (I am looking forward to the day when I have my own tomatoes put up and can then use them instead of canned.)

Then I puree it with my little hand held blender.

Turn the burner up and when it starts to bubble - turn it to simmer and cover.

While it is simmering - prepare your pasta of choice.

You can stop at this point and serve with your favourite rolls or bread and/or a salad and you have a delicious homemade dinner that took about 30 minutes to prepare from start to finish.




For Baked Spaghetti I prepare 4 bags of egg noodles of the wide variety ( 12 oz 340 gm bag) I like to use disposable pans as 1) the cheese hardens when baking and cleaning it is difficult and 2) I do not currently own two pans large enough to hold the complete recipe, something I hope to remedy soon with something that can stand a strong scrubbing to get the cheese off!

When the pasta is ready - I drain it, mix it with the sauce and divide evenly between the two pans (13.88"L X 9.63 W X 2.88" D ) and then we evenly divide a bag a 32 oz (8 cups) of mozzarella cheese over it. I bake at 350 until the cheese is well melted. (About 10 - 15 minutes.) I serve it with a green vegetable, usually broccoli and and, if available, rolls.

Serves 14 - 18 people and can possibly go a little further if there are lots of rolls/garlic bread and salad or green vegetables to stretch it out.


Photos of the preparation...

Onions with the garlic just added.


Just added all the spices to the onions.



Ready to puree with my hand held blender.


Pured and ready to be brought to a light bubbling and then left on simmer.



Steaming and ready to be mixed with the sauce that is still simmering on the stove.



Split into the two pans and waiting for the cheese.


Blanketed with the cheese, the children like me to mix some of the cheese in as well, but I have not done that here. Once I have done that - it not so white with cheese.


About 10 - 15 minutes later the cheese is nicely melted and the broccoli is ready.


Bon Appetit!

Cost:
Onions: less than a dollar (.50)
Garlic: less than a dollar (.50)

Tomatoes: 1.19 a can (3.57)
Pasta: 1.09 a bag (4.36)

Cheese: just under 8 dollars.

Approximate cost was about 17 dollars and we had a whole pan left over that we will be able to use tomorrow. There were 10 people eating at this meal. Add in the 4 dollars for the broccoli we had on the side and we ate for about 2 dollars a person tonight and we have leftovers available.





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