Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Gifts We *Actually* Bought and Received and USED in 2019

In case you need a little Black Friday shopping inspiration, here's some items we've been gifted this past year.  When you purchase through my links, we get a teeny tiny kickback, so I thank you for shopping that way!

The Dad

Scratch Tickets

An overnight getaway or dinner out always makes him happy too!

Teen Boys

phone! With phone case

Tickets for “Things-to-Do” like an Escape Room, Trampoline Park, Lazer Tag, that I usually can grab on Groupon.

Tween Girl

Twinkly lights for her room

(Used but good!) Ice skates

Little Boys

Boogie Boards and extra pens ***most used toy by far***

Marvel Toys


My big huge Gift Guide from years past is here, and my Big Book List is here.  Happy shopping!

Friday, November 22, 2019

7QT: The Theater, Prayer Museum, Basketball Season, Family Feud, and Holiday Shopping

Helllooooo!  What a fun week we had, starting out with tons of weekend activities.  Let's roll...


On Friday night, we went to our high school's performance of Arsenic and Old Lace, which was fantastic.  You can see the set and my boys in their roles over here.  That's right, my sports loving boys are now thespians!  Haha!  They played the roles of dead bodies, and only came up for the bow at the end.  BUT!  They can now truthfully list theater involvement on their college applications :)

Andrew was actually supposed to have a bigger role in the play, still as a dead body, but specifically the dead body that gets thrown in the window seat, and then later buried in the basement.  They figured out a few days before the play started that the boy who was supposed to put Andrew into the window seat couldn't physically lift him out of the box.  Even though Andrew is skinny, it's really hard to reach down into a box and try to lift dead body weight out.  So instead, they just did that whole scene with the lights off and no actual body in the box.  

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Books (for Boys) Books (for Girls) Books (for Moms)

Thank you to both Rachel Balducci and Jenny Uebbing for allowing me to share and link to their book lists.  Just in time for St. Nicholas Day gifts...happy shopping and reading!

Books for Boys 
(as gathered by Rachel Balducci's Instagram Readers)

Michael Vey series                                  Calvin and Hobbes (my addition, a family fave!)

Blake and Mortimer comics                    Ranger's Apprentice: The Early Years (current fave)

Redwall                                                   Tin Tin Comics  

Lord of the Rings                                    Mike Lupica sports books

Narnia                                                      Gary Paulsen books

Percy Jackson                                          Raymond Arroyo's books

Tom Sawyer                                             Eragon series

Mysterious Benedict Society                   Wings of Fire

Freddy the Pig                                          Percy Jackson series

I Survived series                                       Land of Stories

Treasure Island                                         Dragons Love Tacos

Swiss Family Robinson                            Gregor the Overlander

Kidnapped                                                 Rangers Apprentice

Hardy Boys                                               Brotherband

The Green Ember                                      Rising Above

Hatchet                                                    100 Cupboard Series

My Side of the Mountain                         The Sign of the Beaver

Swallows and Amazons                            The Chronicles of Prydain

The Impossible Quest                               Peter Nimble

Books for Girls 

(as gathered by Rachel Balducci's Instagram Readers)

The Penderwicks                                         Boxcar Children

Nancy Drew                                                Thea Stilton

American Girl                                             Happy Hollisters

Trixie Belden                                              Betsy Tacy

The Bernadette Series                                 Lemony Snicket

The Land of Elyon                                      Indian in the Cupboard

Wingfeather Saga                                       Black Stallion

Ella Enchanted                                           Shadow Children series (my addition!)

Green Ember                                             Babysitters Club

Shoe books                                                Little House

Chime Travelers                                        Mary Poppins

Land of Stories                                         Meet the Austins

Doll People                                                The Littles

The Mitchells                                            Dear America Diaries

Ivy + Bean                                                 Mysterious Benedict Society

Ramona                                                      Narnia

Book Scavenger                                         Rising Above

Sisters Grimm                                            Judy Moody

Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place        The Borrowers

All of a Kind Family                                  The Rescuers

The Princess and The Goblin                    E. Nesbit books

The Princess and Curdie                             Marguerite Henry horse books

Friday, November 15, 2019

Beautiful Newport, RI

Last summer, Phil and I made plans to meet with friends on "The Lawn" of the Castle Hill Inn in Newport, Rhode Island.  It's a gorgeous place overlooking the ocean, where they serve drinks and appetizers to those sitting on the Adirondack chairs outside on the lawn.  We were so excited to spend some time there, but as we approached the parking lot, they were turning cars away because they were over capacity.  Boo.  We vowed we would go back some day.  Then this guy turned 39 in October, and we started planning a birthday getaway...but with kids sports schedules, work, NFP timing, and making sure someone could watch the kids....it didn't end up working out until this past weekend!  Better late than never!

Newport was on the last day of their Restaurant Week, where lots of restaurants serve three course meals at a reduced price.  We took advantage and headed to The Safari Room for lunch.  Again, the restaurant was in an inn right on the water, just beautiful.  Phil and I both had the french onion soup and then he had a roast beef sandwich, and I had the fish and chips.

Friday, November 8, 2019

7QT: Soccer, Tooth Fairies, Trees, Exercise, Book Club, John Crist, and Pajamas

Wow, I haven't written anything since last Friday!  I guess that's what two back-to-back days of dressing up 7 kids will do to a mom.  Here's what's been going on in our neck of the woods...


Soccer season is *almost* over.  Maggie and Declan finished their season last Saturday.  I would tell you how their teams placed, if their teams kept score during games.  I mean why would a sports game with two teams competing against one another keep score?  Ugh, don't even get me started.

Eamon plays in a much more competitive league, and his team is in Number One in his division, and heading into playoffs on Sunday.  JP and Andrew's high school teams are finished, Varsity went to playoffs for States this year but lost in the first game.  

Oh, and basketball practices began three weeks ago.

Of course they did.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Halloween and All Saints Day 2019

Umm, Xander?  I think you need to brush your teeth!

I bought the littles new costumes this year, since they always get the hand-me-downs.  Declan was Aladdin and Brendan was Blippi (a really annoying kid show).