Archives for October 2007

Larger Families re-launch

Larger Families has a new look– check it out!


Have Faith

Trust His Plan

Opinion Saturday — Thinking ahead

I almost hate to mention this because I KNOW that Christmas is still two months away. But I have so many people to shop for that I got a teensy (weensy) jump on my Christmas shopping this week. I’d love to get some more of it done soon. This got me wondering — how do you all handle your Christmas shopping? Do you work on it all year? Do you wait til December 20th? What works best for you and why? And for all you crafty types, I’d also love your ideas for fun and affordable hand-crafted gifts. Stuff that kids can assist with would be even better. You have all week to share your ideas. I’ll hand out the Golden Keyboard Award next Saturday.

Speaking of awards, last Saturday I asked for your help regarding my haircut dilemma. Reading your comments, I found myself nodding and agreeing first with the ‘cut’ and then the ‘don’t cut’ crowd. Then I read this comment from Carrien. I’ve given this girl awards before, and I promise I’ll pick someone else another day. But her idea was the perfect answer to my problem. Thanks, Carrien!

In the throes of….ummm… I don’t really know

I sit here typing this with aching shoulders. I feel like I’ve been at the gym. But really I am a victim of (not-so) Extreme Makeover, Mary Edition. The perp too, I guess. I got some lame-brained idea that all I need for a happy life is an organized laundry room.

One side of the room has a nice bank of cabinets, but the other side, til yesterday, consisted of a single upper cabinet and a hanging rod over the washer and dryer. It was OK, but it could be so much better.

Yesterday morning I ran to Home Depot and picked up the components for a wire shelving system along that whole side of the room. I now have three 8-foot wire shelves over the washer/dryer, along with my old hanging rod. I’m using the additional shelving to organize the homeschooling supplies that had exploded all over the counter on the other side of the room.

The little cabinet that had been over the washer is now in my bathroom over the toilet for additional storage in there. Theoretically this will net me a clean counter in the laundry room AND a clean counter in the bathroom. Since I am still in the throes of organizing, the counters are still hard to spot. But I am hoping that tomorrow I will be successful in the quest to dig everything out.

Along with all this, I also installed a tiny shelf in my kitchen cupboard that is perfect for my tiny Ethiopian coffee cups. I installed three new shoe shelves for my 12, 9 and 5 year olds. AND I installed new parts on the closet slider doors in their room to keep their bypass closet doors from continually falling off the track.

My husband’s cordless screwdriver has gotten a heavy workout today, as have my shoulder muscles. I love looking at house plans and daydreaming about my ‘perfect’ dream-house. But when it comes right down to it, there is something hugely satisfying about making what I have work better.

I hope to post pictures soon.

Better dead than a size 3.

This afternoon I was doing a bit of work in my 9 and 12 year olds’ closet, installing a rack to corral their growing collection of shoes. In the process I discovered odds and ends of clothing tossed on the floor, including a nice pair of pants that I’d just gotten at a yard sale. When the 12 year old saw me retrieving the pants, she asked whose they were.

“These are yours, for later,” I said.

“MINE?” she said in horror, spreading them out in front of her hips, obviously dismayed at the size of them.

“They’re a little big,” I agreed, “but you’ll grow…”

“This big?? Me?? Maybe after I go up to Jesus!” She then crumpled the offending size 3’s, threw them on the ground, and stomped off.

Leaving me trying hard to imagine some alternate reality in which I would be so dismayed over the idea of being a size 3.

Pumpkin craziness

It is pumpkin central at our house these days. I have been making muffins and pie and sauteed pumpkin, and everything else I can think of. Just in case any of you also have such issues, I thought I’d share my recipes for Pumpkin Pie from Scratch and Ethiopian Pumpkin Sautee (you can substitute paprika and/or ground red pepper for the Ethiopian berbere if you like.) Happy cooking!


It only took 49 pictures– and one ‘head transplant’. The 2 year old was looking down in this shot but looked great in the previous one (including the same cute arm-cross), so my 15 year old did a bit of photoshopping to produce this ‘perfect’ picture!

Wish me luck

We’re headed for the park at 9:00 Monday morning to take advantage of the fall color and get a family picture. My sister, the one who took this lovely picture two years ago, will again play photographer, and –silly us– we are again hoping to get a nice picture, even though this time there are 12 sets of eyes to get looking the same direction all at once. So, yeah, wish us luck! Maybe I’ll have some out-takes to share later in the day.


photocredit lumix2004

Psalm 66:4

Opinion Saturday: Hair or not?

Remember this bold pronouncement? Well, it was made before I realized that my new girls would come home loving my long hair. I am itching to cut it, and yet whenever I start talking about a haircut, the girls howl in dismay. “No!!! WHY???”

So that’s my dilemma– and my Opinion Saturday question: do I cut it or not? Yes, it’s my hair. But they love it…. What’cha think?