Monday, October 19, 2015

Not that kind of blog

There are many different kinds of blogs.

Sharing blogs, recipe blogs, religious blogs, mothering blogs...

Mothering blogs....sigh....

There are many blogs that I have fallen in love with, only to be disappointed to realize that the blogger really had no greater credentials than I have.

There are so many blogs out there offering parenting and spiritual advice, but only from the heat of the moment they are experiencing at the time.

Parenting is such a ever changing process.  The "wisdom" that I gained with just two young children no longer applies to the two young children that I have now.  The spiritual advice I would have given myself as a mother of young children no longer applies, yet I still have young children. The way I ran a household even just last year does not apply to how I run a household now.  

I don't need a mom in the process of motherhood giving me advice on how to be a mother.

If that is what you are looking for, this is not your blog.

I don't have any answers.  I've tried a lot of different things, but really, life is very case specific. So unless you've had 5 kids in 6 years, live in NC and are married to a nurse, my life is going to look very different from yours.

I also don't believe that my job is harder than my husbands.  I don't feel like I deserve a break all the time or that I'm always deserving time away from the kids.  I like "girl time," but I don't deserve it any more than my husband deserves "guy time."  My husband works very hard.  He has a great burden on his shoulders to provide for our family.  In no way do my responsibilities at home trump that.

So really, all I can offer are the experiences that I have.  I like to share and write.  That's why I have a blog.  It's also nice for family and memories.

That is my kind of blog.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Fishing Trip

 I have so many memories of fishing with my dad growing up.  I'm not sure what I found so thrilling about it, but something about feeling the fish on the line, or even just the peace of standing at the edge of the water fills my heart with warm memories.

So when my girls started begging me for a fishing trip, I knew who to ask.

Of course, I knew 5 little girls would press the patience of my father.  But I also knew that these memories would be too important so pass up.

My father knew of the perfect fishing hole.  It was small enough to keep track of all the kiddos and well stocked with fish so that everyone had a chance to catch something!

The two big girls had their own pole and the 3 little ones shared a pole (which was PLENTY to keep up with).  Poor Papa spent the majority of his time baiting and fixing fishing lines.  I ran back and forth between girls making sure they were having a good time and helping them with technique.

I have to admit, it was pretty fun for me and I was anxious to do some fishing on my own.  It's a good thing the little ones have a short attention span; I gladly took over for them many times!

Here is Papa helping the girls cast their line

The majority of the fish were about this size, which was plenty big for their little arms!

And of course the highlight for me was catching this HUGE catfish!!  And of course I caught it on the little one's 3 foot pole.   I have to admit, I did have to let my dad reel this one in!

That is one BIG fish!

Abby found her own little treasures while we were fishing.  

The owners of our fishing hole also had bunnies!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Girls Pilgrimage

There are a lot of girls in our family.  

And they just seem to keep coming.  

The more the merrier, right!?

My older girls are definitely getting older.  Being one who loves tradition, I have been starting to think about how I want their life to look as they age and mature.  I want to provide them with momentous, growing adventures that they will cherish forever.

Men have it easy.  They pack up a few things, walk out into the woods and camp for the weekend.  The return home bonded and more manly,  Memories were made, plans are dreamed of for future camping trips.

I don't camp.  It's not that I won't, it's just unfamiliar to me. And something about camping with my girls doesn't sit right. I'm sure they'd have a good time doing it.  I'm sure there are lots of other girls that would prefer to camp.  

Then there is the girls pampering weekend.  Getting nails done, nice hotel, fancy dinner, pretty clothes. Which I'm sure they would love to do and I'm sure many other girls would prefer that type of getaway.

But that's just not what I want for my girls.  

Late one night shift when I was still working as a Nurse Aid, I was doing a little research on Monastic life.  I found a female monastery in SC, Saints Mary and Martha Monastery,  that was not too far away. On their website they advertise that they host Mother/Daughter Retreats.  


Here was our chance to get away from the world, out in nature (but not too out), living simply and focusing on God and each other.  This is exactly what I was looking for!  Plus, I was pretty curious myself as to what the female monastic life was like.  I e-mailed the Abbess and we made plans for a summer trip with my two oldest daughters.  

And what a peaceful weekend it was!  The Mothers there were so kind and welcoming.  They had no expectations for us, except to have the respite we desired.  We walked many times through the woods, inspected tombstones, toured the candle making facility, fellowshiped with other Christian sisters, put together puzzles and worshiped God.  

It is truly amazing watching my girls grow up into beautiful young ladies.  I know that raising them is no small task.  I pray that this will be a wonderful new tradition for my girls and me!

My girls with Mother Thecla and Mother Helena

Bricks of beeswax for candles

Candle molds

Where they warm the beeswax and make the candles we use in church

A beautiful meditation spot on one of the trails

Caroline hanging out in the Hermitage house
Makayla relaxing in the Hermitage house

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Adding to the family

It's been quite a while since I've written a blog post, so I thought I would start with our fun news.  Our family will be adding another member in December around Christmas time.  Watch this fun video to find out if it will be a boy or a girl.  Many thanks to my niece for making such a great video!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Kids Everywear Consignment Sale ** My FAVORITE!!

kidseverywear button

I can't lie, consignment shopping can really make my head spin.  All those random clothes stuffed into a little room.  It can be quite overwhelming.  Because of this, I am very picky when it comes to consignment sales.  And of course, I have a system which you can learn about here.  That was 3 years ago and I still follow a system very similar.  And you know what, I still go to the same consignment sale (going on 5 years now). Why?  Because it's well organized, open and easy to walk through.  The staff is friendly and the clothes are plenteous.  I don't feel overwhelmed in a huge loud room because each section of clothes has it's own storefront.    I depend on this sale!  There is no way we could afford to clothe our family without it.  And guess what?  It's coming up soon!  So make sure that you don't miss out on the Kids Everywear Consignment Sale.   Check out to get more information about shopping dates and sale dates (it doesn't get much better than 75% off!!)  They also offer early admission by bringing in gifts for charity.  Who doesn't want to get good deals while helping those less fortunate?  That's a win-win for everybody!  Happy Shopping!