Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Phil 4:6-7

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Life trumps blog Daybook

In the garden...
...rain at the moment. Some days it's cold, some days it's in the 60s. I definitely have to check the weather before I dress each day. Most of the leaves are gone in our yard, but there are some yellows left and one of the red maples is hanging on. I keep telling Faith I want to coat leaves in beeswax to make a garland (as I have a bunch of beeswax pellets which will go bad before I use it all) but I have a feeling the leaves will be gone before we get to it.

photo credit to Noah

I'm thinking about...

...so much my head is spinning. My health issues continue, but other than waiting for the doctor to schedule an MRI and getting into a new endocrinologist, I can't do much. Yeah, my primary care physician was astounded that a doctor told me my problems are in my head. She did some blood work and my cortisol levels are  low, which paired with low DHEA levels means something is up with my adrenal glands. Praying I get in before February.

...thinking about Thanksgiving (wondering how I'm going to get through it without complete exhaustion, but confident God will give me the grace and the strength to make good memories for my family). Most of my menu is set because my family insists on the same dishes every year, but I am trying to incorporate some more vegetables because I want a healthier menu. I usually make green beans with red peppers and shallots, but I wonder if you have any suggestion for good vegetable sides, even a cold dish, though not a green leaf salad. Maybe a brussel sprout salad, or an asparagus salad? any suggestions?

...thinking about Advent and St. Nicholas Day. I'm trying not to break the bank, but it gets really hard to fill the stockings of big kids. They are no longer thrilled with chocolate coins. I have nail polish and bobbles for the girls, but boys are hard. A couple of years ago they got small Swiss pocket knives, and last year they got little Streamlight keychains, but I'm stuck this year. Any suggestions appreciated.

...I am also thinking about hiring someone to come twice a month and help me keep my house clean. Just keeping up with laundry, ironing, cooking and homeschooling, not to mention sewing and Faith's dance schedule is wiping me out. I am barely keeping my house clean. Don't look too closely if you visit. Any thoughts? Do any of my readers use cleaners?

photo credit to Noah

I am wearing...
...my flannel nightgown. I watched the twin girls next door from 5 until 7:30, and when I got home I went straight for my nightgown.

photo credit to Noah

I am reading....
...I have several books going at once. The Honey Thief in real paper book from the library, The Book of Tomorrow on audiobook, and Still Life with Bread Crumbs on Kindle. Nothing deep that's for sure. I just finished Every Last One and it was a really good read. It was the first time in a long time that I just sat and read during the day. It felt quite decadent, but possibly something I need to do more of.

photo credit to Noah

I am creating...
...I'm still working on the gray shawl. I was practicing on some baby items for a project I have in my mind for the future, but I just don't have much time for endless knitting right now. I have bridesmaids dresses to sew. The practice dress was a hit so I ordered 44 yards of fabric (yikes!) to make seven dresses. That doesn't count the flower girl dress which will be white. Or the veil fabric for the bride.

photo credit to Noah

At the school table...

...same old, same old there. Chugging along. I'm enjoying the history, and Faith couldn't be more bored. I get excited about English and she dramatically weeps. Sigh.

Plans for the rest of the week...
...an orthodontist appointment, dance class and a mammogram. Oh, and catering lunch for the dance studio  teachers. Just chili -- nothing fancy.

A few of my favorite things....

...Real Salt, which I recently discovered -- it tastes really good
...red, orange and yellow leaves falling
...pan roasted sweet potatoes and Brussel sprouts with an egg cooked in the middle for breakfast. I never thought I could eat veggies for breakfast, but I'm liking it.
...long evenings with lamplight

Prayers sent heavenward...

...for my husband and children to do God's will
...for my health, mental and physical (you can join me here and I would be most appreciative)
...for all the priests and religious
...for all the babies whose mothers are contemplating abortion this week, for a change of heart

Quote of the day...

I've been thinking about this quote all week, since St. Charles' Feast Day last week.

“If a tiny spark of God’s love already burns within you, do not expose it to the wind, for it may get blown out… Stay quiet with God. Do not spend your time in useless chatter… Do not give yourself to others so completely that you have nothing left for yourself." ~~ St. Charles Borromeo

photo credit to Noah


  1. Nice photos! Thank you, Noah!

    I know what you mean about the stockings. Same problem here! Things you can buy at Costco in multi-packs help: ornaments, little flashlights, movie tickets. They get expensive!

    We do roasted brussels sprouts with carmelized onions and garlic and, sometimes, bacon. I'll probably make my sausage/mushroom dressing this week and freeze it. In fact, you can make and freeze something different every day and have Thanksgiving be turkey and reheating! :-)

    Get a housekeeper! A once-a-month deep clean will make you feel so much better! Don't do it because some of us may (in my case, may NOT), but you need it right now. Maybe, hopefully, not forever, but until you get this adrenal thing figured out.

    Now, I'm going to copy my comment before I hit publish so it doesn't get lost! I even replied on my own blog and it got lost even though I was logged in to Google. :-(


    1. I do my potatoes the night before and reheat in the crockpot, but cooking for 18 makes it hard to do a lot of reheating. That's why I was looking for a cold dish, but I'll keep the Brussel sprouts in mind. Do they reheat well?

      I don't know what's up with blogger. I tried to leave a comment today on your blog and the browser window shut and the comment was gone. Urg.

  2. Excwllent quote! You know, I always thought of having a beautiful, leather journal where I can put all those amazing saint quotes in. Have you ever done that?

    Prayers continue for your health.

    Thanksgiving dinner. My dishes are usually the same each year as well. I have used an easy asparagus recipe before. I like it very much. It's in my recipes on my blog if you are interested.

    I have those same school day moments as well ;)

    Beautiful photos! Have a good week!

    1. I have a prayer journal, but I've never used it for those saintly quotes. Good idea!

      Thank you for your prayers. Much appreciated!

  3. Oh Barbara! My heart goes out to you and the pain you are enduring. I do pray that some of what you found with your adrenals is a start in putting the pieces together, so you can find a plan of healing and recovery!

    In the meantime, do not feel one bit of guilt about getting some extra help around the house. It's not forever; just for now. I am reading Lisa Hendey's "Grace of Yes" right now, and in chapter 3 on the Grace of Creativity, she talks about giving ourselves generously to our work, which you do beautifully, I think. One of the aspects of this, though, is to be able to graciously accept help when it is offered. It can be hard, especially if you like being self-sufficient, but maybe think of it as a lifeline God is throwing you ...

    Lastly, I think I have seen some gift idea lists on Pinterest lately. Maybe a search for "stocking stuffers for teen boys or men" will give you some ideas? I can still get away with chocolate coins :-)

    Love, prayers and hugs!

  4. Those pictures are amazing!
    You got that right...stocking stuffers for 5 kids adds up fast. Looking for ideas also.

    Thinking of you...hope you feel better soon!

  5. I have a question...what did you do for your sons during advent? This son gone to college is a whole new thing for me!

  6. Hugs and prayers, Barbara! I'm sure you get so much more done in one day in your poor health than I get done in a month! I'm praying you find answers soon.

  7. 1. Noah's pictures are really beautiful!

    2. Due to the expense of filling them, we have smallish homemade stockings, not the large store-boughten ones, and we only fill them with edibles. :-)

    3. Davey wanted to hire me a cleaning lady as a gift once, but I considered it admitting defeat. That was in my much younger days, though, and I'd be all for it now. ;-)

    4. I'm sorry you're feeling so poorly, and I hope you get into that doctor soon, too.

    5. Love the quote!

  8. Noah's photos are gorgeous!
    I'm glad to hear your PCP is more sensible, and I hope and pray you get some answers and an effective treatment plan soon. You certainly deserve a house keeping assistant. Seven dresses is really something!

  9. How about car Rosaries for the older ones. Hope your health issues improve soon.

  10. Noah's photos are amazing!! Loved them all!!

    Gosh, I hope you figure out what's going on with you. I'm so sorry for all the pain you have to endure. It does not go unrewarded. I told the kids we had at our home last week, (or has it been almost 2 weeks ago?) that a good friend in Ohio was offering her chronic pain up for all of them. We got some oohs and ahhhs...they were very grateful. Really, those kids are amazing and so are you.

    My idea for stockings for bigger boys (and I have not read the comments, so sorry if this is a repeat) is consumables...like gift cards for coffee or groceries, or movies...fun stuff, they can buy themselves...

    Stockings are spendy, even keeping it light, it's still a lot...St Nicholas day, we just keep it to Candy Santa's only...maybe candy coins...and then we bake a St Nicholas cake!

  11. Oh, yeah and on faith...I'm trying to figure out the families that end up keeping their faith, like all the kids, what did they do that they grew up and kept their faith? I'm thinking it's the rosary. Praying the rosary. My dad's family, he had 9 brothers and sisters and they all kept their Catholic faith, they prayed the rosary every day as a family...then they did not carry that onto their own families and I can count on one hand, out of 60 some cousins that remained Catholic...go to Mass every Sunday and I can count on 2 fingers the number that actually get it, you know that it is Jesus and go to Confession and actually embrace the faith. Yep, my sister and I. (my sister belongs to the SSPX ) We did not pray the rosary growing up. My dad tried to get us to pray during lent, but only succeeded a couple times.

    Anyway...working hard on praying every day with the kiddos....Just wanted to share it with you...Geesh, I should write a blog post or something, huh?

  12. I know all about Life Trumps Blog right now; in my case it's School Trumps Blog.
    Prayers for your health. I'm glad your primary has your back! Hope you get a new endocrinologist soon and start to untangle the mess there.
    My cousin gave me this side dish recipe. It's really good. An odd combo to think about, but tastes very good: http://sfomomfridge.blogspot.com/2011/04/winter-sunshine-salad.html


I appreciate your comments -- sometimes I feel like I'm talking to myself!