Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas Cards:

For those that know me...sending out Christmas photos are a must...I usually send out a photo with a piece of paper that has all of our yearly bio's in the shortest form possible.

I love getting everyone's Christmas picture and especially love the photo cards like the ones at Shutterfly.

We have a pantry full of cards we have received over the years. One of our kids and guests favorite things to do is to open up the pantry, pickup all the stuff that tumbled out, and bask at the photos.

Every year I dream of just ordering photo cards like these at shutterfly. These are some of my favorites:

Love the photo cards that you can fit so many pictures on...

Look at this classic photo, nothing beats black and white photo shots...

Do you think they could sit in for my family...look how sweet they look...

This is called, "Celebrate Family".
I just love the word CELEBRATE!!!

I love black and white backdrops

Finally....12 spots for my 12 kids!!!

Of course anything with a nativity...
the true reason for Christmas
is the all time favorite!

We have been very happy with Shutterfly in the past. Once you have an account, you can make photo calendars, photo books, and all sorts of cool gifts. We have had great success with giving calendars for gifts and I love having small photo books in my purse so I can brag about my kids.

I am grateful for Shutterfly who is giving 50 free cards to bloggers and my buddy Katie for posting about this deal!!!


Friday, November 26, 2010

Angels and Saints:

This mornings discussion about St Michael the Archangel.

Angels can be saints but saints can't be angels.

Many people say that their loved ones who have passed

are angels, this in incorrect.

If they are in heaven they are saints.

The church declares certain people saints

after much research.

See more info about Saints here.

Gotta go...my three year old just told me St Michael is hungry

and is feeding his statue some clementine's!!!


Tuesday, November 23, 2010


I just got this message for prayer:

Kristen, is not in labor, but she is pregnant. She's 27 weeks along and the amniotic fluid level is low and the baby is about two weeks behind in growth. She's due Feb. 16th. The organs of the baby all appear to be in place and developing correctly, but the low amniotic fluid and slow growth are a major concern. Would you please pray for her? Thank you!


Monday, November 22, 2010

Movie Review Monday:

Check out Christianbook.com to get their movie suggestions.


Sunday, November 21, 2010

Pro Christmas Stores:

Info found here:

Color Code:

GREEN: Company uses the term "Christmas" on a regular basis, we consider that company Christmas-friendly.

YELLOW: Company refers to Christmas infrequently, or in a single advertising medium, but not in others.

RED: Company may use "Christmas" sparingly in a single or unique product description, but as a company, does not recognize it.


Companies FOR "Christmas"
updated 11-17-10

Bed Bath & Beyond
Best Buy
Big Lots
Collective Brands
Dollar Tree
Family Dollar
Dollar General
H.E.B. Stores
Harris Teeter Stores
Hobby Lobby
Home Depot*
*See AFA's current boycott of The Home Depot
JC Penney
JoAnn Fabrics & Crafts Stores
Michael's Stores
Neiman Marcus
Pier One Imports
Rite Aid
Super D Drug Stores
Wal-Mart/Sam's Club

Companies marginalizing "Christmas"
updated 11-17-10

Bass Pro Shops
Banana Republic
Bath & Body Works
Gap Stores
Hancock Fabrics
Hy-Vee Stores
Old Navy
Limited Brands
Toys R Us
Whole Foods

Companies against "Christmas"
updated 11-17-10

Barnes & Noble
CVS Pharmacy
Dick's Sporting Goods
Office Depot
Radio Shack
Victoria's Secret

Saturday, November 20, 2010



1 12 oz pkg fresh cranberries
1 orange

Put washed, drained cranberries in a food processor with 1 orange which has been peeled and quartered with all seeds being removed.
Pulse for a few seconds, just until coarsely chopped. Stop and scrape down sides of bowl, if necessary, to chop evenly.

Add 3/4 to 1 cup of sugar and taste adjusting sweetness as desired.

Stir well and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

Cranberry Orange Relish may be frozen for up to 2 months.

Makes about 2 1/2 cups.

This is one of our favorites and on the menu this Thursday.


Apple Cranberry Slaw

I found this here:
PER SERVING (1/5th of recipe, about 1 cup): 151 calories, 3g fat, 118mg sodium, 30.5g carbs, 5.25g fiber, 21g sugars, 2.5g protein -- POINTS® value 2*

One 12-oz. bag (4 cups) dry broccoli cole slaw
1 large Fuji apple, cored and chopped
1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries, chopped
1/4 cup All Natural Almond Accents Honey Roasted Flavored Sliced Almonds
1/4 cup jellied cranberry sauce
2 tbsp. fat-free mayonnaise
2 tsp. honey mustard
2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
Dash salt, or more to taste
Dash black pepper, or more to taste

I haven't had this, it looks good, I plan on making this for Thanksgiving. Always nice to have a new recipe on the table.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Chicken Cacciatore

Found the recipe here and adjusted it the way that worked for me...

• Non Stick Spray
• 3 to 3-1/2 pounds chicken leg-quarters, skin & visible fat removed
• 1 tablespoon olive oil
• 1 cup thinly sliced onions
• 1 tablespoon finely minced garlic or garlic salt
• 15 ounce can no-salt-added tomatoes
• 8 ounce can no-salt-added tomato sauce
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/4 teaspoon pepper
• 1 teaspoon basil
• 1/2 teaspoon oregano
How to make it
• First prepare your leg-quarters. If desired you may cut the legs and thighs apart with a sharp knife or poultry shears. It takes about 4 leg-quarters to make 3 to 3-1/2-pounds of chicken.
• Spray a very large skillet with non-stick spray. Add the chicken and fry it until it begins to brown. Remove it from the pan and lay it on a plate.
• Next heat the olive oil in the same pan. Add the onions and garlic and saute until they are tender and fragrant.
• Open up the cans of tomato products. Add them to the skillet with the onions. Add the seasonings too.
• Stir it up and bring it to a boil. Add the chicken, sort of laying it on top of the vegetables.
• Cover the skillet with a good lid or a pizza pan. Reduce the heat to medium low and let the pan simmer for about 45 minutes. Check it every now and then and add water if you think it needs it. When it is done cooking, serve it with cooked noodles or spaghetti
• If you like, you can add a chopped green pepper, or a couple of stalks of chopped celery along with the onion. A small can of mushrooms is also appropriate here a dash of hot pepper is good too.


Tuesday, November 16, 2010





1. I love that your forever my one and only
2. I love your cute face
3. I love your fathering
4. I love your balance
5. I love being married to you
6. I love you accepting me for my crazy self
7. I love your pessimistic personality…even if it annoys me at times
8. I love that you let me homeschool our kids
9. I love that you help me with the kids
10. I love the taste of the salt on your skin after running
11. I love waking up in the morning especially when you cuddle
12. I love when you work from home
13. I love your hair especially when it is short
14. I love you when you help me during labor, even when you got to hole Kolbe
15. I love how you think I am hot when I am pregnant
16. I love that you let me stay home with the kids
17. I love that you support my faith
18. I love how I feel safe in your arms
19. I love how you let me cuddle up next to you in the winter for warmth
20. I love your sardonic smile
21. I love that you don’t mind when I go shopping at the consignment shop
22. I love when you wear your running pants
23. I love you when you hold me after a good cry
24. I love that you balance our checkbook
25. I love to watch you sleep
26. I love that you let me text you at work 20 times a day
27. I love how you hold our babies on your chest
28. I love when you read to the kids
29. I love to rub your shoulders
30. I love to hug you from behind
31. I love that you think that I am the pick of the litter
32. I love when we pray together
33. I love that we are BFF’s
34. I love your gross toes
35. I love your warmth
36. I love when you teach me to do new things on the computer
37. I love that you think that I am more beautiful at 42 then at 16 when we met
38. I love how you are a hard worker
39. I love that you are a great parent to our teenagers
40. I love TTN
41. I love HT, HS, and any H day
42. I love that you are funny
43. I love that you help me when I am lost
44. I love that you are so smart
45. I love that you like to read
46. I love that I love your more today than the day we were married


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Girl Birthday Party:

Getting ready for Happy Birthday five year old.

Going for the Nutcracker Ballet Theme...you gotta have a theme.

Making this cake...we will let you know how it turns out.



Wow nine today...you have always been everyones special buddy...

You make us laugh and keep us smiling...

You are so unique and sweet...

We know Christ has a special plan for you...

DO it and Do it well...


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Catholic Dating:

Catholic Pick up lines found on FACEBOOK

My teen son thought these were funny...whatever gets you a good Catholic spouse honey...

1. Confess here often?

2. Did you feel what I felt when we reached into the holy water font at the same time?

3. You've got stunning scapular-brown eyes.

4. I bet I can guess your confirmation name.

5. Let's get out of here. I know a much cozier little Catholic bookstore downtown.

6. You don't like the culture of death either? Wow! We have so much in common!

7. What's a nice girl like you doing at a First Saturday Rosary Cenacle like this?

8. Sorry, but I couldn't help but noticing how cute you look in that ankle-length, shapeless, plaid jumper.

9. Hi there. My buddy and I were wondering if you would settle a dispute we're having. Do you think the word should be pronounced HOMEschooling, or homeSCHOOLing?

10. May I offer you a light for that votive candle?

11. You don't have an accountability partner? Me neither.

12. The Bible says "Give drink to those who are thirsty, and feed the hungry"; how about dinner?

13. You look so beautiful in that mantilla you wear to Mass

14. Want to go to Adoration with me?

15. I didn't believe in predestination till I met you.

16. Man does not live by bread alone. So how about dinner and a movie?

17. What do you think Peter meant when he said, "Greet everyone with a holy kiss" (1Pet 5:14)?

18. A little bird... the Holy Spirit actually... tells me we should get to know each other a little better.

19. Do you need help carrying your Bible? It looks heavy.

20. What are your plans for tonight? Feel like a Bible study?

There are 60 more on FACEBOOK.


Prayer REQUEST for women in Labor:

From Debbie:

I want to ask you to pray for my neighbor Margaret who is in labor right now with her daughter, Lyla Grace. She and her husband, Bret, have experienced two miscarriages in the last two years, so they are overjoyed, to say the least, to be at this point. Today also happens to be Margaret's birthday, God is so good!! Thank you for your prayers.


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Toy Review Tuesday:

Please send me your favorite useful gift buys...it is time for Christmas...and the seven winter birthdays we celebrate around here.

I just had to throw away the one we have had for 18 years. SO we decided to get this for the little guys for Christmas. I usually give away the toys when we are done. Unless they are wonderful...so at this time I have a few things for the one year old. Does anyone have an all time favorite toy? I need some suggestions.


Sunday, November 7, 2010

It is TIME for change:

I got a new job...I get to write for a local PATCH news online. My latest was about advice for parents with little ones.

Let me know what you think...and feel free to link it if you want.

Giving advice is like running for public office: People can always dig up dirt about how you don't practice what you preach. Let me share some advice that has worked for me most of the time. I have to confess that I am far from a perfect wife and mother, so take this advice with a large grain of salt.

I am constantly asked how I accomplish anything with 12 kids. One of the main questions centers on bed time and getting a bit of time alone or as a couple. First of all, I had to come to grips with the fact that even though my kids seem needier, my first priority is my husband. I know it seems strange when the children are little and so needy, but the best thing you can do for your kids is to love your spouse. One thing that has helped my marriage and my parenting is to put the kids to bed early when they are young. read more here:


Monday, November 1, 2010

All Souls Day:

Soul Cakes from here:

The old English custom of "soul-caking," or "souling," originated in pre-Reformation days, when singers went about on All Saints' Day and All Souls' Day, November 1 and 2, to beg for cakes in remembrance of the dead. The "soulers," as the singers were called, droned out their ditties repeatedly, tonelessly, without pause or variation. Doubtless Shakespeare was familiar with the whining songs because Speed, in Two Gentlemen of Verona, observes tartly that one of the "special marks" of a man in love is "to speak puling, like a beggar at Hallowmas."

Allhallows e'en, or eve, a night of pranks and fun in North Country homes, was celebrated with many wholesome games. Young people, for example, read future events from the way roasting chestnuts sputtered and jumped next to the red-hot coals. They bobbed for apples and flung snakelike apple parings behind themselves, to learn the initials of future mates. Our British ancestors brought these old folk practices to the New World, where generations of adolescents have observed them on the night that witches traditionally ride broomsticks and hobgoblins venture abroad.

But long before the last night of October was an acknowledged time for juvenile merrymaking, the Druids celebrated the festival of Samhain, or Summer's End, to honor the dying sun. This was the season of prayer, augury, and human sacrifice, for evil spirits walked on earth and sought dominion over souls of men. It was not until the fourth century that Allhallows, the mass for Christian saints, supplanted these pagan ceremonies for the sun god. Another six hundred years elapsed before the Druid death-feast finally became All Souls', the day of prayer for the departed.

Soul cakes and souling customs vary from county to county, but souling practices always flourished best along the Welsh border. Even there, the custom is rapidly dying out. In hamlets of Shropshire and Cheshire, in parts of the Midlands, and Lancashire one sometimes hears the soulers chanting old rhymes such as:

Soul! Soul! for an apple or two! If you have no apples, pears will do. If you have no pears, money will do. If you have no money, God bless you!
In olden times "soul papers," with solicitations of prayers for the deceased, accompanied the cakes which were given to the parish poor. Householders, as well as churches, bestowed soul cakes as a charity in behalf of the departed.
Soul cakes were of different kinds. Formerly, some cakes were flat and oval. Others were plump and bunlike. There was a spiced-sweetened variety, and the sort that resembled a small fruit cake. All were rich with milk and eggs.

Soul cakes as adapted to American tastes from early English recipes, make delicate tea-time or party buns. Instead of the saffron and allspice of the original cakes, use a few drops of yellow vegetable coloring as well as nutmeg and cinnamon.

The following recipe is an adaptation of an old Shropshire formula. The light fluffy buns, delicious for any occasion, are especially appropriate for Halloween. Serve them hot, with plenty of butter and strawberry or raspberry jam. Accompany them with mugs of cider; or with hot chocolate, topped with marshmallows, for the young; or with coffee or tea for those who are older.

Cream shortening and sugar. Dissolve yeast in 1/2 cup lukewarm water to which a teaspoon of sugar has been added. Set aside. Scald milk and add to the creamed mixture. When cooled add yeast mixture and stir until thoroughly blended. Sift together flour, salt, and spices, and add gradually to other ingredients, kneading into a soft dough. Set sponge to rise in warm place in greased covered bowl. When doubled in bulk, shape into small round or oval buns. Brush tops with slightly beaten egg white. Bake in moderately hot oven (400° F.) for 15 minutes. Drop temperature to 350 ° F. and bake until delicately browned and thoroughly done.

Recipe Source: Feast-Day Cakes from Many Lands by Dorothy Gladys Spicer, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1960