Friday, March 31, 2006

I can't think of 100

A friend of mine wrote 100 things about herself in her blog. I intended to do the same, but gave up early. I am too tired to think any more about boring old me. So here is 49 things about myself. Drum roll please.

1. My name is Celeste. That was easy!
2. God sent me the best husband, Brian, and he loves me better than I ever could have hoped for.
3. God sent me three precious little children - Jacob, Nicole and Andrew.
4. I have 2 parents who love me unconditionally - who could ask for more.
5. I have 2 big sisters who love me unconditionally - I thought I had it good with number 5!
6. Considering all facts listed in numbers 2 through 5, I believe God is really good!
5. I love being Catholic!
6. I look like my paternal grandmother.
7. I lost 54 pounds this year!
8. I love purple. Pink is becoming a really close second. Thank you Mom H.
9. I would love to have more children - God willing.
10. I have childbirth labor pain amnesia. I always think I will not want an epidural. I guess the amnesia part will come in handy considering number 9 on this list.
11. I love to organize stuff.
12. I have plans for a reality TV show spinoff called Creating Spaces.
13. If I could figure out a way, I would make millions organizing other peoples stuff.
14. I am blessed that God saw fit to send me a best friend and plop her down right across the street from me.
15. I love to stamp.
16. I love to quilt.
17. I have infected best friend in number 13 with both of the above diseases. Her husband loves me.
18. I do not know how to swim.
19. I hate driving on the freeway next to orange construction cones and concrete barricades.
20. I love the hard rock sound of guitars.
21. I am thankful for Contemporary Christian music that has this guitar sound, but at the same time allows me to praise and worship God with its uplifting message.
22. I own a guitar.
23. I do not know how to play this guitar.
24. I honestly think, at least weekly, about getting out the guitar.
25. My favorite place to eat and visit is Kemah!!!!!
26. I could eat Mexican food all the time and not get tired of it.
27. I cannot stand toothpaste anywhere but on the toothbrush as it brushes teeth in a mouth.
28. I do not like to sell things to people.
29. I love to sing.
30. I believe the best place to sing along with Barbara Streisand records is in my parents 2 story den! Ah, the acoustics!
31. I love birthdays.
32. I go barefoot all the time.
33. I love books.
34. I love to read, smell, hold, look at books.
35. I love to fill bookshelves with great books.
36. I just purchased a new bookshelf to fill up with books.
37. I am enjoying homeschooling and we're not even "official" Kindergarten yet.
38. I talk well. What I mean is I'm a certified card carrying member of the On and On Anon group.
39. I tend to write like I talk. I was always the last to leave an essay test in college.
40. I cannot fall asleep on car trips.
41. I am addicted to Circle E Candles - thank you dear friend o' mine.
42. I think coffee smells better than it tastes. That is, except for Starbucks Frappacinos.
43. I like this blog thing.
44. I hate cockroaches.
45. I hate ironing.
46. I love the dry cleaners.
47. I like going to Sam's and tasting all the free samples of all the stuff I never buy.
48. I am a library junkie. I have a large section on the hold shelf.
49. I am very tired and I can't think of much more. Oh, well.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Good news and Bad news!

The good news is........the sofas are in!!!
The bad news is........the sofas are in!!!

Good because I get my new sofas soon. Bad (not too bad, really) because there is not going to be any den painting any time soon.

I shouldn't complain! I am happy! We will paint the den and the rest of the downstairs at a later date. In truth, even though I had a new den color all picked out prior to the sofa phonecall yesterday, I don't want to make a decision too fast. Maybe I'll tour a few more model homes and collect a few more painting ideas before I take the downstairs painting plunge.

The sofas arrive next Wednesday! I shall post photos when they come! Yippee!

Now back to taking down wallpaper in the Master Bath. :)

Monday, March 27, 2006

Tonight is a Two-fer!

That is Two fabulous blog entries fer one day! Yippee!

Wish me luck as I make a journey to the neighborhood Sherwin Williams store tomorrow. We ordered new sofas about 4 weeks ago and now I have convinced myself that prior to putting said sofas into position upon their arrival, it is time to paint!!!! I am not sure where I get these fabulous ideas. It just seemed logical to me that since we are going to move just about every stick of furniture in the den and that we will know (from Rob the salesman) when our sofas are "almost here," it was time to give our den a refresher.

My hang up! I am scared of color!!!!!! Maybe it's more that I am scared of picking the wrong color (even if it is only a beige or off-white) and then plastering that wrong color all over my walls. I love the idea of color, but I am petrified! Besides, how do I choose? There are at least 30 shades of off-white. I just know my off-white is going to be too "off."

So wish me luck. I am hoping that Mr. Sherwin Williams will look at my desperate, indecisive face and kindly say, "Here. Choose this one." I can hope, right?

I shall post further updates and paint chips. :)

Yes, my hands are full

The other day I made a trip to the mall with all three little ones to finish a little shopping for Brian's birthday and return something I had bought. Jacob had the job of pushing Nicole in the stroller, which he did happily. I pushed Andrew. We made our way and the children were very well behaved, if I do say so myself. During our trip three different salespeople said the exact same thing to me, "My, your hands are full." While I know that they mean nothing rude by it, it is funny to me that so many people I cross paths with make this same comment. And I only have three!!!!

I know these salespeople meant well and surely were referring to the amount of energy, time and hard work mothering three little ones requires. I couldn't agree with them more! It is the most difficult line of employment I have been in thus far. I guess I am just wondering if the comment is sometimes a reflection of our general culture's view that children are more of a burden than a blessing. I just pray that my efforts to reply kindly to their comments and the sight of my carefree little ones and I tromping happily through the mall with our Sonic Slushies are a small witness to the blessing that this life I lead truly is.

As a sweet friend of mine and mother of five has said in response to this same comment from various observers, "Yes, my hands are full, but so is my heart." Amen!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Congrats Mommy! You did it!

The above title captures the words on the banner my little family made me when I arrived home from my final "weight loss" Weight Watchers Meeting! Yes, that's right. I have now entered Maintenance Mode. And I couldn't be happier.

This all began in August 2005 when my third child was 2 months old. With a little info and encouragement from someone dear to my heart, I joined Weight Watchers. (You know who you are and I thank you!) With each birth I had retained more weight and realized I needed to do something about it now so I could be healthier, look and feel better, and, God willing, be at a better weight to have more children. As I forked over my money for the first ten weeks, I truly believed that this was a big waste of money - I just knew I did not have the willpower. The journey has been amazing and fantastic. To make a long story short - Thursday, March 16th, I reached my goal weight after losing 53.2 pounds!!! Praise God! I know God made me beautiful inside and out and I always have been, but now I really feel it!

If anyone has ever considered Weight Watchers, I STRONGLY, HIGHLY recommend it! Using two words to describe it, I would have to say it is "real life." Nothing funky. No starvation or deprivation required.

Thank you to all of those who knew about this journey of mine and who prayed for me.

Before.............and.............After! Posted by Picasa

Monday, March 20, 2006

Sunday, March 19, 2006

So what about socialization?????

I don't really know the complete answer to this extremely popular question directed at homeschooling mothers as they juggle their children while putting groceries on the conveyor belt and sorting coupons (whew), BUT I'll give it my best shot. Speaking from experience, of course (however small and limited that may be thus far).

A week in the life of an almost "official" homeschooled kindergartener :) and his sister and brother.

- Jacob attends Mass and joins children at the Children's Liturgy.

- Play date and lunch at friends.
- Jacob and Nicole attend gym class (soon to be T-ball for Jacob).
- Greet and speak politely with the engaged couple visiting our home for a meeting.

- Play date and lunch - our house.
- Homeschool park day.

- Library (Jacob and Nicole chat with librarian).

- Attends Mass and spends the day with grandparents.

And all of this does not include the one form of socialization which I believe will teach them their biggest social lessons in life: daily, 24 hour living with parents and siblings.

The strangers who pose this question at the mailbox or in the checkout might worry. Me? Not one bit! I have better things to worry about. :))


Overheard at Gamma's dinner table:

Gamma: Did you try your rice, Jacob?

Jacob: (Staring doubtfully at brown beef flavored Rice-A-Roni on plate) I like white rice.

Gamma: Well, I'm not sure what color the rice is, but...

Jacob: It's brown.

A very literal child just like his mommy!

P.S. Thanks for the fun day Gamma and Pappa - and the rice. :) Everybody loves you!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

The Canary Story


There was a lady I knew who loved canaries and decided to buy herself a new one. And that she did! She deliberated for days over a suitable name and finally the call came. HIS name would be "Sing-Sing." I applauded the choice - so appropriate for a BOY canary. But there was a slight problem with Sing-Sing. He was not much inclined to sing-sing. So singing lessons were begun. Only the best and most time-tested methods. She accustomed HIM to arias, country crooners, Irish ballads and, of course, a good dose of mariachi music. Still HIS sing-sing was half-hearted. Then HE began this odd little habit of pulling out feathers and stashing them in a corner. HE was given string to distract HIM. It too was shredded and stashed along with the feathers. This lady, whose knowledge of canaries, in my opinion is at or near expert level (REALLY), called the trusty shop that sold her little Sing-Sing and it was determined that if a vet could determine that HE was sick or that HE was not a HE, she could return HIM. Well, no need to spend lots of money on a vet visit. This morning HE laid an egg. :) Some things just don't need much explanation.

One thought, though. I think the sales staff at said canary shop might need to return to Canary School for a little further training. :)

I love the Canary Lady! She's a great lady!

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Brain drain

It is now 10:30pm. My brain is drained. My eyes are fuzzy. I really had intended to write up a little something more profound and deep, but since the only "deep" thing I can currently think about is how deep my head is going to sink into my pillow, I cannot. Therefore, I will just take a moment to be thankful. Thank you God for:

1. My husband and beautiful, oh so precious children.

2. The opportunity to have the "job" I always dreamed of having.

3. Allowing me to start over every day!

4. Family who loves me, supports me and encourages me.

5. Friends who give me so many laughs and lots of companionship.

6. A brain to think with and eyes to see with.

I think I am going to go check out that pillow now! Buenas noches.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

His tooth is no longer looth

Congratulations, precious son, on losing your first tooth. I can't believe it is already time.

It all happened last night. It had been hanging on by a thread for days, but he did not want it pulled. I can't blame him - they are way too much fun to wiggle and play with. We went out for dinner and checked on the tooth several times just to make sure it did not end up in his stomach with his jumbo sized hamburger. We returned home and realized, as he and Nicole were doing a puppet show, that the tooth was gone. Where? Who knows. Stomach. Parking lot. Van. Carpet. We began searching and finally I found it on the carpet directly in front of our framed print of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Thank you Jesus.

As we prepared for bed, we also made preparations for the Tooth Fairy to visit. I made him a tiny blue envelope for his tooth and it was carefully tucked under the pillow. She came. This little 5 year old has been very excited, as are we. It is amazing how time flies - especially when you are having fun! :)

The first loss in a series of many! Posted by Picasa

Friday, March 10, 2006

Just a little reassurance...

for all mothers out there. Mothers are human. Our children are human (even if they are cute). Right?

Now, as evidence of how human we all are here in this home, I give witness to this morning's exciting events. To begin with I woke far later than I would have liked to and therefore I was not ready before the troops hit the ground running. Things were going well. Jacob and Nicole were sharing, using words of kindness and working together in the kitchen to prepare a nutritious Pop-tart breakfast. :) I overhead from my station upstairs tending to Andrew and making a bed, "Oh, no!" I did not rush down (I'm not sure why), but slowly descended the stairs with Andrew and peeked through the banister. There was a very large pool of orange juice on the counter and spilling over to the floor. By the time I had gotten there, Jacob was dutifully sopping up the mess with a kitchen towel. I told him he was doing a great job cleaning up and I would finish it up when I came down. No sooner did I return to my tasks at hand, then I heard, "Oh, no!! Oh, no!!!" I think I went a little faster this time. Once again, there was a second, much larger pool of orange juice on both the counter and the floor. All in a different spot, of course. I actually managed to laugh to myself and ordered the kitchen help to evacuate the area. I ran back upstairs, put clothes on and decided I had better get down there. I plopped Andrew into his high chair and began to tackle the sticky, orange mess. I tried to hurry, knowing that the children were anxious to eat the breakfast they had prepared, but I found it a little difficult as my feet kept sticking to the floor. Jacob decided he would turn on all the lights downstairs to brighten up the morning. In the process he managed to knock some curtains out of a front window. Not too major, really, just annoying because I then have to put the curtain rod back together. When the kitchen is moderately safe, I allow the children to enter and eat. I gave Andrew some banana chunks to eat while I do a little more cleanup and find some breakfast for me. By the time I sat down, with Andrew's bowl of peaches and cereal in hand, he had managed to coat most parts of his upper body in banana. At that point I decided that it couldn't get much worse and managed to just not look at the floor as we ate. After breakfast, as I cleaned up Andrew, I realized that a large portion of the banana chucks were now matted in his sweet little brown hair. Oh, boy! I laughed and proceeded to comb them out. Now I have to clean the comb and Andrew's hair isn't quite so fluffy.

As I type this, the children are playing happily and cheerfully and the kitchen is neatly vacuumed and mopped. I am pleased with he assurance that it will now remain clean for at least another 10 minutes. :)

As I sopped, scrubbed, combed, and mopped, I DID smile. I really did - hard for me. I heard in my head, "BEEP BEEP - This is a test. This only a test." And that it is. But it is more than "ONLY a test." This is the kind of test where the scores are determined by the smiles I manage to have amidst the chaos and mess. My scores will be higher if I accept all these things as contributing to my reward in Heaven and offer them up to the Lord.

God bless you all today and remember, when a 5 year old and a 3 year old are making breakfast, expect mess!

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

At the request of one of the very proud grandmommy, here is a photo of Nicole, as well as Jacob and Andrew. They are so precious.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

My 9 month checkup

Well, look at me and all my teeth! I'm such a big boy now. Today was my 9 month checkup and I did great! I weighed in at 20 lbs and 1 oz. and I'm 29 1/4" tall. My only question is how come my big brother and sister got stickers and I didn't???

I'm growing by leaps and bounds!!! Posted by Picasa

Monday, March 06, 2006

The Licking Lizard

Look what Jacob did today! He's been wanting to construct this one for a while. Great job!

Super K'nex Creator Posted by Picasa

Monday, glorious Monday

Let's face it! Some Mondays are more Monday-ish than others. Today is one of those. Of course, now it is almost 4pm and as I sit back and look back at the day, it hasn't turned out quite so bad after all.

This morning found me discouraged from the start. Andrew has had a cold and so his waking during the night was all off. I was frustrated that he was awake too early and generally disappointed in my inability to control everyone's schedule (like, I ever really was anyway). I thought to myself, "I wish everyone would just cooperate with my perfectly laid out little time table." Perfect? Says who? Well, didn't Jesus say we are to be perfect as our Heavenly Father is perfect? Right, yet not so right. He did say those very words, but I think often times many of us, me especially, don't quite have the concept. God does want us to be perfect, but not necessarily in the mundane details of our everyday life. I believe Jesus said this because He wanted us to work toward being perfect in loving as our Heavenly Father loves us perfectly. I wonder - if we were able to perfect the way we love others, would all the other things fall into place? It's worth a try.

Lord, forgive our tendencies to control and be perfect in the eyes of the world. Help me instead to love perfectly and work diligently at all the other tasks at hand, putting it ALL in your hands.

With all that said, my day has not been "perfect." There are many things that have not been accomplished today, but have I loved more perfectly? I hope so.

My first photo post

Isn't he just the cutie-est?

I'm not sure if anyone cares but........

I just got myself a BLOG!!!!!

If anyone is listening, especially anyone who knows me, welcome and bear with me as I learn the ropes. I am looking forward to sharing my heart and our lives as we all grow in "wisdom, age and grace before God and man."

I was inspired to take up this little editorial most especially by Danielle Bean and her wonderful website. It gives me much pause to think and often refreshment in the midst of the daily grind of life. I hope my words can be enjoyed by many as are hers.

I hope friends and family will enjoy the updates and photos we can share as we navigate, day by day, this great adventure that God is leading us on - life in general and that of homeschooling.

Happy Lent!