We have another winter storm coming tomorrow, but today starts Spring anyway! It seems that even Mother Nature gets a little backed up on her to do list, so all of us Mothers can use that excuse ;)
My three wee lads
St. Patrick's Day and St. Joseph's Day were celebrated by our Garlic and Gaelic clan. We ate shepherd's pie (with green mint shakes for dessert) on St. Paddy's Day and lasagna (with rice krispie treats for dessert) on St. Joe's Day. Those are two big, easy, make-ahead meals for my family of overeaters. And I discovered I should not make rice krispie treats anymore because I couldn't stop eating them. Treats always taste so good when you give them up for Lent!
Well this latest winter storm brought us TWO days of no school/work along with 15 inches of the white stuff. We headed out with the kids to play this morning. By we, I mean Phil. I just ventured out to take some photos and then it was right back inside to clean the house while everyone was out of it :) Brendan (18 months) lasted so long out there! A true northener!
What a wonderfully sunny Sunday we had! It was chilly, but we had no basketball games or work, so we got in some good quality family time with a side of Vitamin D. I just wanted to remember these days before the next Nor'easter/Blizzard/Winter Storm from Hades hits us tonight.
Maggie got in trouble for her tendency to fight back when we ask her to do something...
Maggie: Sorry, Mom, I just went to Confession and now I ruined it because of my anger problems.
Me: Maggie, you don't have anger problems, you just have to learn to control your temper.
Maggie: Well I wish I wasn't Irish so I didn't have such a quick temper!
Me and Lent have had a rocky relationship this year. We started out like newlyweds on a honeymoon, every day was so easy and rewarding and I felt great about life. I was using my prayer journal and reading Scripture each evening, praying the rosary daily, and refraining from sweets and Instagram like a boss. Then we went through a trial separation. The prayer time wasn't so easy to find nor looking as attractive as it had in the past. It felt like a lot of effort on my part.
But, I think we are now back on track. I am doing really well with my no-social-media fast (meaning I haven't cheated, not that it's easy!) and only ate ice cream one night and some chocolate another night because I forgot! It's always the added prayer time that gives me the most grief, and we all know that comes from down under (and I don't mean Australia, mates!)
I think the logistics of big family life are always what intrigued me the most. I would look at big families and wonder how they handled the grocery shopping, meal planning, errands, laundry, house cleaning, chauffeuring kids around, etc. I wanted to be a fly on the wall to see how it all worked. I come from a family of eight, but being one of the youngest children in a big family is different than being the MOM of a big family. Hello, responsibility! Although life can get overwhelming in these areas at various points, I feel like we have mostly got a good system going, and thought I'd try and share what we do and would love to hear any tips you have in the comments!
This one is fairly new to me, but now it's become such a good habit. I have an excel spreadsheet with each day written down to plan the meal, and then sections for groceries that I'll need, super simple:
Usually we try to make a plan of meals on Friday night or Saturday morning and then shop at some point during the weekend. We ask the kids if there's any meal they want, and add that in too. It's really helped us save time and money each week. If for some reason we haven't meal planned, I walk around the store like a zombie throwing in random items, hoping to make something out of nothing for the rest of the week. I don't know how I lasted so long without meal planning!
Well the biggest news of the week is that I joined Weight Watchers.
But this time it's different (she types optimistically) because it's an At Work plan where a leader comes to our school once a week to weigh us in and have a meeting with us for 12 weeks. The cost is $156 BUT my health insurance will reimburse $150 per year, so it's only $6 total! There's 15 of us doing it so it's kinda fun to be in a group with friendly coworkers and then you can encourage each other during the week (and smack cookies out of each other's hands).