Saturday, January 31, 2009

Weekly Menu

Saturdays I do meal planning and grocery shopping. I love this chore, now more so than ever because: A. Paul tells me what sounds good to eat (I don't know about you but it gets burdensome making ALL the choices every week), and B. Paul watches the kids sometimes so I can go alone! :)

Today he has a hospital call and cows to tend to so I'll have to take the little darlings along and bribe them with an oatmeal cookie as big as my hand but we will manage.

The weather is AWESOME!!! 66 degrees and sunny. At this moment I am having second thoughts about grocery shopping this afternoon. It would be much better to spend our after-nap-time outside playing! Maybe we'll delay until after supper. When they're cranky. Sigh. And so I say, the perfect time to run errands with toddlers is when they're OLDER.

Here's what we're having this week:

Saturday: Sicilian Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Mixed Vegetables
Sunday: Superbowl Fare--Sliders, Chips and dip, Grasshopper Cake
Monday: Turkey and Cous-Cous, Green Beans
Tuesday: Fried Chicken, Green Salad, Fruit Salad
Wednesday: Butternut Squash Soup, Grilled Cheese
Thursday: Manicotti and Salad
Friday: Coconut Curry Chicken & Rice, Broccoli, Sauteed Apples

Anybody know where I can get decent fish around these parts? We want to eat fish once a week but everything I've bought so far tastes 'fishy'. HELP!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

What Grace Has Been Working On

In the name of the

and of the Son...

and of the Holy...


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A Good Ad

Click here to go to the site where you can watch it.

Are you praying for Barack Obama today? I am.

Read the pope's telegram to him here.

Friday, January 16, 2009

I Finally Did It

You know that list of things about which you think, "You know, I really should do this." And then you keep putting it off and so forth and never do it for, oh, say YEARS but then you finally do it and it's great?

Well, a few days ago I did something like that, something I haven't done since I was in college, back when I had oodles of free time.

I baked bread.

Not sweet breads, I've made lots of those. I mean the bread you eat every day, that you and your family devour by the loaf in the form of toast and sandwiches. Every day bread.

And it was good! (And shockingly easy, just like I knew it would be.)

I am hoping this is going to be a regular thing. I even added it to my schedule of weekly chores. If all goes as planned, I'll bake two loaves on Sundays. I'm blogging about this to hold myself accountable more than to inspire you. But I do urge you to give it a try (you've probably been baking your own bread for ages) if you haven't.

** Here's the link to the recipe I used. Alterations I made: I used 2 cups whole wheat flour and 2 cups all-purpose flour, and I used Active Dry Yeast and just put my dough in a warm place instead of at room temperature.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

I thought this was beautiful...

"...we can entrust every new life that blossoms to the hands of God, who is stronger than the dark powers of evil." (Pope Benedict XVI, from last Sunday's homily)

He goes on to talk about how entrusting our children to God leads to Baptism, thus restoring to God that which belongs to him. Our children are not our property; they have been entrusted to us by God, and we give them back to him. Good reading.

But I was thinking more about the line above and how ALL children are his from the moment they are conceived, and how even in these times when sadly this is not acknowledged, it is no less true. However we choose to engage in battle against violence of any kind toward children, born or unborn, we must remain HOPEful knowing that every child is in his hands and that God IS stronger and WILL triumph over evil.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Prayer is Powerful

So let's all unite in prayer.

Starting today (if you want to end on the day before Inauguration Day) or tomorrow (if you want to end on Inauguration Day), please say a novena of your choice for Barack Obama and his administration. In particular, we should pray for A CONVERSION for those who don't respect the dignity of the human person, and that everyone will know that JESUS CHRIST IS OUR SAVIOR (not anyone else).

From today's Second Reading:

"...the victory that conquers the world is our faith. Who indeed is the victor over the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" (1 Jn 5)

On a lighter note, it was a beautiful day here. Paul, Uncle Dan, Grammie, Poppa, and kiddos were out enjoying the weather brick-chipping style. (We still have lots of bricks from the old Kingman school that have mortar on them and must be cleaned before they can be used.)

Hope you had a glorious Sunday!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Hello, this is the Arnolds' Residence!

You move to a new home in a new town. You get a new phone number, selected from three or four choices because it has a pattern you think people will easily remember. You notify everyone you know of your new number.

And then...

In the days and weeks and months that follow, you come to the realization that the people who had your number before you most likely changed their number TO EVADE BILL COLLECTORS. Or they lost their phone service.

Either way, I have decided to just start praying for them.

I'm praying for you, Dilbert and Gertrude Billwicky (names changed to respect their privacy). It won't be hard to remember to.

Friday, January 9, 2009

"...With Your Whole Heart"

From Morning Prayer:

"You shall seek the Lord, your God; and you shall indeed find him when you search after him with your whole heart and your whole soul." (Dt 4:29)

I find comfort knowing that my efforts are guaranteed to be fruitful, as long as I don't hold back any part of my life from God.

For me, the challenge there is letting go of my daily desire to be in control: to have everything run smoothly, to get X Y and Z accomplished, to have obedient toddlers (oxymoron), to have a little time to myself. So I'm working on having a plan, but not holding on to it too tightly. Leaving wiggle room for the Spirit.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Sharing Smoothies

Today I shared a Banana Chocolate Smoothie with my children.
Now I'm sharing it with you. It may be an acquired taste, because it uses unsweetened cocoa, but I find the banana sweetens it enough for my tastes, and besides, I like it when I can actually taste my chocolate and not primarily sugar. Perfect for the moment in the afternoon when your sweet tooth and grumbly tummy are demanding satisfaction. And it's really healthy. And very yummy. My kids can't get enough, and neither can I.

Banana Chocolate Smoothie ala Arnold

1 banana
1 heaping spoonful unsweetened cocoa (I use Ghirardelli)
2 spoonfuls protein powder (I use Reliv ProVantage, which is soy based)
some milk (I would guess about 3/4 cup, it really depends on the consistency you like)
1/2 tall glass of crushed ice (my fridge dispenser does this for me because my blender is wimpy and can't handle whole ice cubes)

(I've also made it with plain yogurt, another yummy variation.)

Blend well and pour into a tall glass. Salute!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Dancin' in the Kitchen

So our 'big' gifts to our children this year (we knew they would get plenty of gifts from extended family) were ride-on cars.

We imagined them scooting around on them, chasing each other, giggling with glee.

They enjoy them, alright. But their ways are not our ways.

They love to push the button that plays a little ditty, and then DANCE.

One of these days we will work on riding the cars. Either way they're working on gross motor skills, right?

Monday, January 5, 2009

Monday Joys

Greatest joy of the day so far:

I went in to fetch a smiling Joshua from bed this morning and the first thing he asked for was "Sissy". I took him out to the kitchen where she was eating and she smiled and said, "Hi." He smiled back and said, "Hi." Such a simple greeting, but a beautiful way to start our Monday.
Also great because one of my current resolutions is to begin the day with a loving greeting to each member of my family. They're on board today.

Second greatest joy of the day so far:

Pictured above. I love catching them reading.