Follow our family's journey as we seek to nourish our souls with music and literature, good company, great cooking, time spent in nature, and always, the love of Christ especially through the sacraments of His Church.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"A Wealth of Children"

I recently read this phrase, regarding a certain culture's attitude toward large families. It's unfortunate that we don't often encounter that sentiment in mainstream American life. How many people in our current culture actually think "wealth" when hearing of a family with 4, 6, 8 or even more children? Such a beautiful way to think! I am filing it away in the back of my mind for future reference. It's delightful to be reminded that children are more truly "wealth" than any of our material goods.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

What's New With The Kids

This is the journal entry I keep needing to make - the one to remind myself of where we were at this time in our lives, a few years from now...  I'm sharing so you can peek into life as we know it right now!

Brendan ~ Eight-and-a-half now, beefing up suddenly and he seems sooo big. He still asks for hugs every day, and I'm seizing these opportunities, while hoping that they won't really go away, even when he is a much bigger boy. I think to myself almost daily that I am not ready to be the mother of big kids!! The Transformer craze is not going away. Some days I wish we could have diversified a little more or steered him in another direction, because I am left wondering if there is any way this interest could contribute to a meaningful future. It made me feel better one day to hear some teenage boys in our homeschool group discussing the parallels between the Transfomer storyline and medieval history. Now that would be a fun way to learn! We are commonly held hostage to long "reviews" about individual Transformers, complete with step-by-step instructions for getting them into different modes (yawn). I have to say, Brendan's vocabulary is immense, and one reason he reads so well is because he's pursued something he's passionate about. I would rather have him reading Transformer packaging than Dick and Jane books, truthfully. He still loves marine life, although it's not as much a part of his daily activities at this point. He is a good helper to his siblings, even if they frequently irritate him. He's a Transformer buddy to Benjamin, and a creative playmate to Molly, easily getting into her schemes and instigating rowdy games of "chase" and hide-and-seek. Of course she adores him and eats it all up.

Benjamin ~ is our kid gifted with wondrous natural abilities of all kinds. He has endless pieces of electronic equipment dissected in his bedroom, boxes of circuit boards, fans, wires and other parts. He's a Lego wizard, and plays with building toys in a really unique way that we haven't seen with other kids. He collects those free apartment guides to study floor plans and exteriors, and "designs" future building projects with a ruler and pencil. I hope he becomes an architect and builds me a pretty house someday :) It's amazing to see how building is in his soul already! He's also naturally athletic, especially loving his pogo stick from St. Nick last Christmas. Sometimes we call him "monkey boy" because he's always perched on the edge of something, holding on with his toes, or twisted up like a pretzel. Ben's a relatively new six-year-old, so he's still super-cuddly and loves his Mama lots. He's the one who first started saying "Mama - all mine!" a few years ago, which now has passed down to Molly. Sometimes they fight about it. Oh, the hardship...

Molly ~ is so precociously two right now. Extremely imaginative, decisive and opinionated, she keeps everyone hopping to keep up with her ideas. I'm daily astounded by her verbal abilities. Of course I never compare (wink) but I am certainly not used to so much conversation with someone barely two-and-a-half. Frequently heard during the day: "Hey, I had a ideee-a!" She insists on endless "role-playing" with her stuffed animals and dolls, and really likes making them cry so she can make them feel better! I have to hold them upright and make them "talk" until she is content, and God help me if I am done before she is! Fortunately, she is pretty distract-able. I just have to mention another idea, ("How about making a picnic for Moosie?") and she's off and running with it. An interesting character named "Monser Beww" (Monster Bear) has emerged in the dramas. He chases everyone and tries to eat them. So, also frequently heard: "I a Monser Beww! I do-nna EAAT you!!! Yesss!" Great fun, running and screaming with big brothers. Thankfully, she also like to play "baby", informing me "You a Mama, I a bee-bee," while snuggling in for hugs and kisses. I wish it would never end!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Commonplace Collection: Security

Do you have a Commonplace Book? A place to write bits and pieces of what you've read and would like to remember? I have long recorded snippets of fiction and non-fiction alike, but I have only recently realized that historically speaking, such journals are called Commonplace Books. For centuries these personal collections have played a significant role in the way scholars read, learn, and remember. They paint a beautiful picture of an individual's growth over time- of his or her personal journey... I'd like to share a bit from my own Commonplace Book - might you allow me a peek into yours? (From Sarah at Amongst Lovely Things)

"The settled happiness and security which we all desire, God withholds from us by the very nature of the world: but joy, pleasure, and merriment He has scattered broadcast. We are never safe, but we have plenty of fun, and some ecstasy. It is not hard to see why. The security we crave would teach us to rest our hearts in this world and oppose an obstacle to our return to God: a few moments of happy love, a landscape, a symphony, a merry meeting with our friends, a bathe or a football match, have no such tendency. Our Father refreshes us on the journey with some pleasant inns, but will not encourage us to mistake them for home."  ~ C.S. Lewis