September log book

Vi counted 27 flowers

Vi counted 27 flowers

Outside my window…

Birds chirp and flutter. Plus, the best weed ever (with bright orange edible flowers) and our citrus trees (sour orange, lemon, and mandarin) are in bloom.

Giving thanks…

So happy to be experiencing lactational amenorrhea. Eight years of continuous breastfeeding without ever using a single bottle or pacifier, and I’m finally reaping the benefits. :)

I am thinking about…

Trees! The big tree at the back of our property does a great job of screening the bulk of our neighbour’s two-storey house so we don’t feel it looming over us quite so much, but it’s a giant weed that we have to prune back brutally on a periodic basis. We would much rather have an attractive fruit-bearing tree in its place. Now that the lawn project is nearing completion (yayyyyy!!) I’m on the quest to find the right specimen for our smallish back garden.

In the Schoolroom…

phonics

We are still not doing much formal work since John was born, but I did implement a 15-minute read-aloud time that is going very well so far. Basically, everyone has to read to someone younger than them for 15 minutes each day, and when they do, they get to draw a smiley face on our laminated chart. :) David’s 15 minutes is spent sitting with an older sibling while listening to the Jolly Phonics CD and tracing the sounds in our set of seven Finger Phonics board books. All the kids enjoy reading, being read to, and the Jolly Phonics songs, so this has been a very popular innovation at our house.

From the kitchen…

Fat bombs! That sounds weird, I know, but they are basically different forms of coconut (oil, butter, and flakes) mixed, solidified, and topped with a bit of dark chocolate. I love Bounty bars, and the ones I made are a bit like those, only less sweet. They make an easy, quick, and filling snack. I’m going to have to finish them off before it gets much warmer here since they will melt sitting out on the counter, but get too hard if stored in the refrigerator.

I am creating…

cutting-playdough

We celebrated Play-Doh day a couple days late with some homemade play dough for the kids. Each of the four older kids chose his or her own colour combination. I was planning on using MaryAnne’s best ever play dough recipe, but then I remembered the jar languishing in the back corner of the refrigerator with ingredients (minus flour and oil) pre-measured for a Thermomix play dough recipe, so I used that instead.

I don’t ever want to forget…

entertainers

How John’s big brothers and sisters beg to hold him, and gather around to entertain him. He is such a cute, cuddly, and well-loved baby.

I am working on…

… getting our 7-year-old Windows laptop updated to make it through a 1.5 hour Australian Music Education Board theory exam without crashing. Nikki has been taking the practice exams for a while now, and she’s nearly ready to take the official exam. I just hope the computer is ready, too.

I am reading…

What Happens at Mass, by Jeremy Driscoll, for a deeper understanding of what Jesus meant when He asked us to “do this in memory of me.” (Luke 22:19, I Corinthians 11:24). I’m also looking through Surviving When Modern Medicine Fails: A definitive guide to essential oils that could save your life during a crisis, by Dr Scott Johnson, for some ideas on treating my acne. Not exactly a crisis! but I’m willing to try something a bit different at this point.

I am praying…

… for persecuted Christians, for a friend’s special request, and that John’s digestion will be completely normal.

I am struggling…

… to get back into productive routines now that John is no longer a newborn. I have so many things I want to incorporate into my days, from spiritual disciplines to homeschooling and hobbies, but as usual I find it difficult to think well when baby’s awake and/or nursing, so I’m just barely getting the essentials done at the moment.

I am hearing…

RAR-flyer

… the Read Aloud Revival podcast. Many great ideas and inspiring people on the show, which is aimed at helping us create a family culture around books. Not that I needed any encouragement to buy more books…

Clicking around…

After several years of trying to buy a certain difficult-to-acquire-in-Australia item for Ben, I finally stumbled across (what I hope is) the perfect solution. Now you’ll have to wait ’til Christmas to find out what it is!

Around the house…

We need to think of some clever ways to provide seating for guests. An unexpected benefit of becoming Catholic has been developing more actual real-life in-person friendships than we’ve had since we lived in Houston (12 years ago!). We want to be able to practice hospitality for more than just a couple people at a time, but it’s going to take some creativity since our house is small.

One of my favourite things…

smile

John’s big gummy smiles.

A few plans for the next week…

A ladies’ evening out at a friend’s house (with baby John, of course). Finish preparing the soil to lay new grass. Get some tree removal quotes. Celebrate Vi’s weaning feast. And maybe a nap on Sunday?

How about you? What plans are you excited about for the coming week?