Friday, January 31, 2020

7QT: Taxes, Crazy Hair, Kobe Bryant #girldad, Science Fair and Superbowl


It's the last day of January!!  That means it's time to start your taxes!  Woo-hoo!!  I love using TaxAct to file our taxes.  It's easy and cheap and stress-free.  I used to do taxes for a living, and they're not scary to do yourself, unless you're self-employed, then you should go see a professional.  But if you're just dealing with W2s, it's fun and simple.  Try it and see :)


This week was Catholic School's Week, which meant a lot of dressing down and thanking God for the normal uniform routine.  Picking clothes out is stressful!  Maggie's hair for crazy hair day was my fave look of the week:

Thank you Google for that idea!

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

January 2020: Book, Cook, Look

Here's what I've been reading, eating, and wearing lately!


The St. Paul Company (Dr. Scott Hahn's company) sent me a copy of The Attic Saint to review, and it was a big hit.  

I must admit, even my 8 year old kept walking back and forth as I was reading to the little guys, trying to listen in without appearing to want to.  My 12 year old gladly sat nearby and listened as well.  Even I was intrigued about the story, not something you can say about most children's books!  The story is about a boy, whose family moves into an old convent, and he finds an icon of St. Ambrose in the attic that helps make his new house feel like a home.  The best part was that once the book was over, I told 5-year-old Declan (who was reeeeeally into the story) that I had something special for him, and handed him the St. Ambrose icon prayer card, and he was thrilled!  We went up to his bedroom and hung it up right away in a spot that he can look at when he falls asleep.  I have purchased icons from this online store before, and can't wait to reread this book as it gets closer to Easter, and have icons for the kids in the Easter basket this year. 


After Jen Fulwiler suggested this cookbook, we have been trying to make a couple new soups each month.

Phil and I eat soup every workday during the school year, so I make a big pot on the weekend, divide it up into these glass containers, and we grab them each morning, along with a greek yogurt.  It's a great way to get in our veggies, homemade bone broth, dairy and protein.  Recently I discovered these protein chips that taste very similar to Doritos, and if a soup recipe doesn't contain much protein, then I will eat it with the protein chips as well.  For the month of January, I've been having a daily shake as an afternoon snack, made up of protein powder, collagen, psylium husk powder, spinach, blueberries and vanilla unsweetened almond milk.  It hits the spot and helps me from snacking on crackers before dinner. Why are crackers always calling my name at 4pm?


I bought this cute dress for the Spring for less than $17 and a sweet rose colored cardigan to wear now for only $13.  

I just love Loft Outlet sales.  I am looking at rice cookers as well, as we seem to be eating it more often as a side, but I do have an Instapot already, so I'm wondering if it's worth having another appliance?  Or does the Instapot do a good job of cooking rice?  I'm just sick of it sticking to the pot when I cook it on the stove.  Any rice advice appreciated :)

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Friday, January 24, 2020

7QT: Health Apps, ProLife Kids, Dinner Recipes, College Plans, Workout Buddies and Rosary Parties


I had my last scheduled doctor's visit this week, to the Orthopedic Surgeon because of my shoulder pain that occurs when I perform certain movements.  They took an xray and he moved my arm certain ways, and said I had impingement syndrome (or bursitis of the shoulder).  I was like:

He actually spoke quite a bit, and by the time I left, I could barely remember any of it.  I researched medical apps after that appointment, seeing if any existed to help you record and understand doctors visits, and they do!  This Health/Doctor App would have been very helpful after all the appointments I've had recently.  I'm going to start using it during my kid's appointments as well, since *someone* is not a big detail guy, and I feel I never get the full story when that *someone* brings our child to the doctor :)  Anyway, I now have a month's supply of anti-inflammatory pills to take, and physical therapy to start.  How wonderful to get old ;)


My four oldest babies are on the March for Life today!!

 I miss them so much, but I'm so proud of them for being pro-life.  Maggie waffled about going this year (her first time) and finally decided to go at the last minute after some reassurance from us.  She's with her three big brothers, best friends, two cousins, parents of friends, our pastor, and the rest of the good people from our parish.  Since we don't allow sleepovers, this is like a chance in a lifetime for her and her besties :)  Besides, I set them up with some good snack packs:

The soy sauce and salad dressing were for me, not them!

Thursday, January 23, 2020

I'm the Mother Runner of the Month!

I found out last month, that somebody (who??) nominated me to be the Mother Runner of the Month over at The Mother Runners website.  I am COMPLETELY out of my league with the really awesome, really fast, really committed moms over there, but am honored nonetheless.

Mother Runner of the Month: Colleen Martin

It’s kind of impossible to not be inspired and amazed by this month’s Mother Runner of the Month, Colleen Martin.

Here’s a quick recap of Colleen: she is a mom to 7 (7!) kids (pre-k to 16), works full-time as a business manager at a Catholic high school, has been consistently running since high school, has run-dates with her husband, and writes for her own blog and a Catholic women running blog. Her nominator is in awe of how Colleen manages to stay in shape when it is hard for her with just two kids (let alone 7)! I think most of you will find Colleen’s take on exercise and health refreshing and moving.

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

My White Kitchen Cabinet Reveal

Let's take a quicksie look back at the history of our kitchen, shall we?  

When we moved into our house in 2004, this is what it looked like.  We had a tiny kitchen with a big kitchen table in it to fit our growing crew.  Back then, I was just beyond grateful to have a place to call HOME after having moved ten times in the first 3 years of marriage.  I wasn't born with design skills or a DIY attitude, and our kitchen stayed just like this until 2016.

In 2016, while pregnant with our seventh baby, and feeling very cramped in that kitchen as the boys got bigger and took up much more physical space, we decided to renovate.  We were able to knock down a wall, and move our bedroom, to create a bigger kitchen with a big dining room beside it.  We added an island with white cabinets, hoping that one day, we would be able to afford white cabinets to replace the brown ones on the wall.  Our kitchen remodel post is here, if anyone's interested.

Friday, January 17, 2020

7QT: Just Life Lately


I went to the ObGyn for a healthy checkup for the first time in my married life without being pregnant!  When you're having a baby every couple of years, your gynecological exams just get thrown in there, but once your baby is three, you actually need to schedule these things!  Who knew?

  Ok, I actually knew, but I was not in a rush to do it, until my general practitioner reminded me.  That's a good doc.  So in the last few months, I've gone to the dentist, oral surgeon, had my yearly physical, my first mammogram, a dermatologist checkup, the ObGyn visit, and next week I'm seeing the orthopedic doc about my shoulder pain.  Guys, if medical visits were a sport, I'd so be winning.  I'm a huge believer in preventative maintenance, mostly because my family is filled with doctors and nurses, but also because so many things are easily treatable WHEN DETECTED EARLY!  So, if you're putting off that appointment, then stop it!  Be good to yourself, even if you have to shave your legs and let your belly fat hang out in the open.

Friday, January 10, 2020

7QT: Life Since Christmas

Helloooooo!  It's been a minute or two since I last checked in here.  I hope you are all settling into 2020 with perfect vision :)

Here's what we've been up to:


Behind my parent's ice cream shop on Cape Cod was a little restaurant that served THE BEST fish chowder in all the land.  The owner was Chef Sigmund, an immigrant from Poland, who rented the building from my Dad and was the source of my lunches a couple times each week in the summer.  I could eat a pint of chowder with two packages of oyster crackers like it was nobody's business.  When Mr. Gajowniczek (the man St. Maximilian Kolbe saved) came to stay at our home, it was Chef Sigmund who lovingly prepared a traditional dish from his homeland and shared the meal with us.  Long story short, an old friend of mine let me know that Chef Sigmund's son had reopened a shop selling his dad's chowder in a different town on the Cape.  I was able to pick up a couple quarts while we were down before Christmas, and the memories tasted so good!