Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Camera Download time!

The Rosebush anticipated this Marian Feast of the Expection of our Lady! (Dec 18)

No wonder my dad favors shooting landscapes and wildlife!!

Best Christmas gift Henry got this year? Clare. What a blessing they are to us and to each other!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Videos GALORE!

Between updating the computer and just being plain busy, I've really been neglectful in the video department!

So without further ado:

Pillow Hopping

Blanket Baby

Clare's first solids

Rolling Baby


Henry Sandwich

November morning

White Board Winner!

Yay! Karl won the $200 first prize in the white board contest.

The contest was held in connection with the launching of the new SWINC website layout--with a whiteboard theme.

Karl was asked to decorate a few whiteboards for the launch party this afternoon--his talents are much sought after!

Monday, November 3, 2008

tRICK or Treat!

Submissions for an office-wide "creative use of a whiteboard" contest had to be submitted last Friday. Karl decided to promote "Rick Roll Awareness."

Here a few photos from his campaign:





Thursday, October 23, 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Terrific Tuesday

I've had a really wonder-full week--though I'm running on empty today. I need a reminder of all the great things that happened, so today doesn't turn into TERRIBLE Tuesday!

Best Birthday Surprise EV-AR. Thursday I turned 25--my golden birthday. September is full of birthdays in our family, and I was so busy planning and celebrating everyone elses, that I kept forgetting about my own! So when Thursday rolled around, I wasn't expecting much--just a pleasant evening with Karl and the kids. UNTIL 2pm when my mom called for the second time of the day to sing happy birthday (I thought maybe she was having an old-timer's moment) but then my sister knocked on the front door! Unbeknownst to me, mom and Doll had flown down to Texas to surprise and celebrate with me. They came bearing gifts and all the fixings for Red Velvet Cake (recipe card in hand)--My FAVORITE!

Best Cake. Handmade Red Velvet cake--topped with amazing all-butter frosting. Simply

Great Movie. Arm in Arm with my mom, sister, and good friend Hallie, we ventured out to the movies. Treat yourself to the thoroughly edifying and uplifting, pro-family movie: FIREPROOF. You'll be so glad you did! I think I will be giving every engaged couple a copy of Janet Smith's "Contraception, Why Not" An NFP booklet, and a DVD of Fireproof--good stuff.

Delicious Brownies! Mom's brownie recipe can't be beat, but since the store didn't carry the Jiffy Chocolate frosting that I usually use, I tried my hand at Laura's Crazy Cake frosting --WOWEE! I didn't know these brownies could get any better.

Ok, I'm feeling better :) I think I can even withstand with insane screaming fit Henry woke displaying :O

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Saturday, September 6, 2008

New Video

Hey y'all, my little sister asked for some new footage of the littles--so you have her to thank for these newest videos!!

Drawing--Henry shows us his drawing skills.
Clare crawls--outdated footage of Clare beginning to crawl (more to come...)
Salsa Babies--we love this song!
Henry: The boy from snowy river

Thursday, September 4, 2008


"It is called the sacrament of confession, since the disclosure or confession of sins to a priest is an essential element of this sacrament. In a profound sense it is also a "confession" - acknowledgment and praise - of the holiness of God and of his mercy toward sinful man.

It is called the sacrament of forgiveness, since by the priest's sacramental absolution God grants the penitent "pardon and peace."

It is called the sacrament of Reconciliation, because it imparts to the sinner the love of God who reconciles: "Be reconciled to God." He who lives by God's merciful love is ready to respond to the Lord's call: "Go; first be reconciled to your brother." CCC 1424

It's one of the Seven Sacraments of the Catholic Church, and such a beautiful beautiful gift.

Thanks, Karl, for watching the kiddos today. What a blessing it was to hear these words:

God, the Father of mercies,
through the death and the resurrection of his Son
has reconciled the world to himself
and sent the Holy Spirit among us
for the forgiveness of sins;
through the ministry of the Church
may God give you pardon and peace,
and I absolve you from your sins in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

My Young Doppleganger?

Thanks to my mother for sending along one of my baby outfits.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Beautiful Day

All four of us took much needed naps this morning--Karl recovering from late night monitoring duty, and the kiddos and I recovering from a week-end illness. The extra rest successfully delivered everyone to Mass in rare form.

Henry, while still exuberantly himself, confined his energy to our little section of the church, chimed in on cue with "Amen" and "Alleluia," and proudly held his sister on his lap. Karl whispered a word of praise to Henry during Mass, and the sweet darling's eyes welled up with tears*! What a little man he is becoming.

I had to pause as I entered our living room when I saw Clare sitting by herself examining a small wooden alphabet toy. She, too, is growing so! How she makes me smile.

Thank you, Lord, for our little family--we are so blessed!

Here's a photo from an outing last week. Pictured are Clare and her new friend, Philomena. They share August 11th as their feast day! Their patronesses must have arranged their friendship in heaven :)

*Were Henry's tears caused by:
a) Surprise at the realization that he was behaving well at Mass,
b) Excitement and Joy that he would receive a doughnut after Mass for good behavior
c) Both!

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Thursday, August 14, 2008

Holy Day of Obligation!

I hope you are better at looking at the calendar and living the liturgy than I have been of late. But in case you are in my same boat, here's your reminder!

Don't forget to attend Mass tomorrow (FRIDAY) in honor of the Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This is the oldest feast day celebrated in her honor.

Karl will return from work around 6:30 tomorrow morning, and then we're off to St Elizabeth's for morning mass. I couldn't ask for a better start to the day! I've got the kids and my clothes (even their diapers and shoes!) ready to go--a 6:30 call time is early even for use these days.

A blessed day to you all!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Random Goodies

Here are a few photos that I wanted to share.

Big Helper #1 --Henry's main kitchen duty is to help mama sort the silverware. Usually he's very, ahem, creative when it comes to proper placement. This day, however, he was spot on.

Beating the Heat #2 #3 & #4 --This was one of the first times Clare sat up unassisted. As you can see in #3, she doesn't always stay that way! We got outside for a few minutes of water fun that day (before Henry ran away to the neighbor's. Grrr!)

Clare and Opa#5 --Harvest was in full swing, but whenever Karl's father had a free minute (and wasn't covered in itchy grain dust, hee hee) he would scoop up Clare, who grinned from ear to ear, while he bounced-tickled-cooed our little dear.

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Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Harvest 2008

O'pa and the boys were able to get all of the Sorghum out of the fields, just in time for Dolly's arrival (Hurricane Dolly that is, lol.*)

We had such a nice time visiting with all of Karl's family--all 30 of us!

(Karl's parents, their four children and respective spouses, and 21 grandchildren!)

This year's theme was "the 50's" --complete with soda shop, poodle skirts, greasers, bubble gum blowing and hula hoops!
Yours truly won the limbo contest :)

*Joke courtesy of Dolly herself

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Win Cloth Diapers!!!

Win a Bum Genius 3.0 Starter Kit from Nature's Child - Wholesome Goods for Mothers and Babies

This looks really great--we love our BG's and this is an excellent starter kit for even TWO babies! We use 18 for both Henry and Clare!! One size fits all is the way to go!!

I wash the 18 every evening, however, so if you had more diapers you may be able to wash every other day :)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

I LOVE Laundry...

sorting, washing, drying, folding--you name it, I love it.

Lovingly changing dirty clothes into clean, folded clothes was a frequent apprenticeship under my mother as a child. And to this day I enjoy it thoroughly from start to finish.

In fact, I would gladly trade friends to make that my only chore :)

HOWEVER, after a weekend full of sickness, you can imagine how much laundry I got to do! Even yours truly was looking forward to a break.

Don't you worry yourselves, friends. My dear Henry knows me too well for my own good. He knew that I shouldn't get out of the daily laundry habit--

SO he poured onto the floor, the my last cup-ful of detergent, and sent me a-scurrying to sop it up with random dirty clothes (to salvage those precious last drops!!)

Good News!! There is a happy ending to this tale. I had the presence of mind to choose clothes of different colors--now I can do TWO loads ;)

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Let's Go Another Round..or Two!

Please pray for Karl--the newest member of the sick-weed club. Henry had a relapse last night, but seems to be better. Clare is recovering, but not yet 100%.

Pray for me too!! I'd rather that at least one of us remain outside the club :)

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Audrey, Be Thankful for...

...Wet diapers
Your children are not dehydrated.

...extra long and extra frequent naps
Their little bodies are healing themselves, and you can catch up on sleep too!

When even nursing upsets your little tummy

...A broken ice machine, had to buy new ice trays
Can't keep down food? Suck on homemade gingerale-cicles!

...Karl's help and thoughtfulness
Thanks for the Dr Peppers and Frosty's, four hands and two brains are always better than 2/1. Especially when both are running short on sleep and patience.

Thanks, Bub, for reminding me that these little trials are my means of sanctification. Sometimes I forget--Suffering can Save Souls!

11pm Thursday
A nasty stomach bug has come to visit the house. Henry was the first to notice his unwelcome presence, and the nasty effects of his arrival were manifested to us all. Poor guy couldn't keep water down for most of the day.

5:45pm Friday. Good riddance villainous virus.

6:00pm Friday. "Still here!" he shrieks with mischievous delight.
*Sure wish we'd have known before sending Henry with Karl to the store--Cars, stomach illness, and Henry never mix well :(

7.00am Saturday. Unfortunately the departure of that sneaky bug was celebrated prematurely, and he returned with a vengeance the next morning. This time, he chose our little Clare to be his host. A day of celebration, her half-birthday--Six months old today!!! A day of new *solid foods,* will have to be postponed until a later day--she didn't even want to nurse and hasn't been able to keep anything but Pedialyte in her tummy.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Doing Atkins

Still doing Atkins 'round these parts, although we've all been eating too much sugar. (in other words I eat too much sugar, and Karl has been seen sneaking a nibble here and there--tee hee)

Karl = 238 (that's a 30 lb loss! woot woot)
Audrey = 110 (8 lb loss)

Karl has added an afternoon walk to the far bus stop in the Texas heat to his daily regimen, and I have been trying to walk with the kids to the park and/or the local grocery store each day.

It's more difficult than it may seem to get that morning excursion in, however. The window for outdoor time is very narrow. We are all up by 7:30, but Clare goes back down for a nap at 9:00. Anytime after 10:00 is just too darn hot. So to get everyone dressed, fed, and out the door by 8:00 can by quite a feat. I try to get water and clothes ready the night before, and make breakfast for everyone when I get up with Karl at 4 to avoid having to cook twice. But stuff happens, schedules get tweaked, weather is unpredictable (we got caught in rain twice last week!) and it doesn't always work out.

It sure feels good to get outside though--we enjoy talking to the neighbors, bugs, bunnies, birds, dogs, and occasional turtles that we encounter on the way!


Ugh--there must be a way to upload video in a timely manner without sacrificing all quality, but I have yet to discover it! Send your suggestions my way if you have any :)

There are a few new clips of the family on youtube, hope you can make us out through the fuzziness!

Thursday, June 19, 2008


So sorry I haven't been updating the blog. If my dear Aunt Susan hadn't sent a hint my way, it may have been an even longer hiatus--I didn't even realized how long it had been!!!

We've been traveling a-plenty. I solo-ed a plane trip to Minnesota to visit family and celebrate the college graduation of my brother --Congratulations Isaac!!! Karl and I left from Texas on the same day, but different flights, different airlines! I had to keep both kiddos with me because our return flights were going to be different from Karl's. I really couldn't have asked for better travel companions--2 years and younger that is :) Henry and Clare--let's travel again together soon. Ha ha. I got some really great traveling advice from a mother and flight attendant that kept us sane and happy. Henry only ran away twice (once he ran past an unsuspecting flight attendant and down a jetway!)

More updates to come--thanks for your patience with me :)

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Friday, May 9, 2008

Birthday Dress

Here is a special birthday project for my goddaughter and niece, Patricia. The coral polo shirt is from Target :) It was a bit large, but in a few months I may post some pictures of her modeling it!

I would love to make a set of these jumpers for Clare--in every size--for simplicity, function, and femininity. I think there is enough fabric left for a baby top and bloomers--perhaps the next project!

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More Atkins Success!

Karl: -5 lbs
Audrey: -3 lbs

I can't tell you what contributed to my weight loss this week...I ate more sugar this week than all the previous weeks combined!

Karl, on the other hand, can attribute his weight loss to skipping his bus transfer in the morning and walking to work from that stop instead.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Atkins Week Three

Karl: -3lbs
Audrey: +/- 0

Still working on getting our exercise levels up--although it's a given that you get a daily dose of toddler chasing, "real" exercise is hard to schedule, or get motivated to do.

Karl reports that he's able to fit into shirts that were before too snug to wear comfortably! Way to go, sweetheart!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Quick Atkins Update

Karl: -5lbs (metabolic resistance to weight *fat* loss=low)
Audrey: +/- 0 (holdin' steady)

This week included the added quirk of eating away from home--it was an interesting challenge to choose foods that we would normally eat in large, and unhealthy, quantities. We did pretty well!

The kiddos and I are heading to CC for the weekend, so Karl will be on his own for food choices and portions--yet another challenge!

Monday, April 21, 2008

Happy Birthday, Henry!

Thank you, Lord, for the blessing that Henry is to us! What joy has filled the two years that you have been with us--we love you!!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

A Week in Pictures

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Atkins Update: Week One

Great week overall--our diet has never before been so varied. We tried new things: Red Cabbage Slaw (yummy!,) Turnip Fries (bitter,) Faux-Tatoes (I'll cook the cauliflower longer next time,) and Feta Cheese (really, only Karl tried this and said it wasn't cold enough!) We had a lot of fun experimenting with different egg dishes, meats, and cheeses.

I'm not ecstatic about sweetening with Splenda--I can taste the unpleasant difference a mile away-so I'll just keep my real sugar to a minimum. Honestly, though we haven't had any sodas (pop) and Karl's only drinking maybe one cup o'coffee /day, so the occasion for sugar or Splenda use is minimal. I did make Zucchini muffins using Splenda, but have not tried them myself. Also I whipped up a batch of Italian almond cream--but unless you eat it with berries, it's pretty disappointing (sorry Karl!)

Henry and I had the benefit of eating lots of fruits and nuts, so you won't hear me complain! Not that Karl is complaining, but I think I would were I in his shoes :)

We had a week of meals planned out, but mixed things up from day to day to accommodate leftovers and preferences.

After a week of Atkins here is where we stand en route to the goal:

Natural Waist +/- 0
Hips -1
Arms +/- 0
Legs +/- 0
Stomach -1
Weight -11 lbs (Dr. Atkins explains that most of the weight loss this first week will be water-weight.)


Natural Waist -2
Hips +/- 0
Arms +.5
Legs +/- 0
Stomach -2
Weight -4 lbs

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Monday, April 7, 2008

For Health and Happiness

Tomorrow we begin the rest of our healthy lives. Lately energy's been low, irritability high so it is time to take charge of our health!! Karl picked up an Atkins Book from B&N, and I read it for the both of us ;p. Low carbs, low/no sugar, lots of veggies, good proteins and good fats--eat when hungry, until satisfied.

Since I'm still nursing Clare, I won't be counting carbs, just eating more veggies and cutting back on starches, processed foods, sugar etc. But Karl will start the 20g Carbs/day tomorrow. With a reevaluation in two weeks. He had a visit to the Dr for a checkup and blood work today, and all is a go!

We'll both be upping our exercise--and have joined a Faith and Fitness group at church.

Weekly updates coming your way!

Natural Waist 45"
Hips 52.5"
Arms 16"
Legs 29"
Stomach 48"
Weight 268 lbs
Goal: 200 lbs
Height 5'10"
Natural Waist 29"
Hips 38"
Arms 10"
Legs 21.5"
Stomach 32"
Weight 118 lbs
Goal: 105 lbs
Height 5'0"

Monday, March 31, 2008

Cover to Cover

During my first year of college, my first two theology classes required the reading of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) front to back--it was awesome! With the assistance and insights of a wonderful professor, those months were some of the most enlightening of my life.

I will endeaver to take up that assignment again for the rest of the year. A fellow Catholic mom has put forth this challenge, and I have accepted!

Consider taking up this task along with me-- you won't regret it!

Monday, March 24, 2008

He has Risen, Alleluia!

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He has risen indeed, Alleluia!

Clare's Baptism Day

I just found this CD of pictures hiding under my bed--so sorry they haven't been shared until now!

Way back in January, Clare was baptized!! My brother Isaac and our niece Stephanie were asked to sponsor her, and both made the necessary preparations and subsequent trek to Central Texas to attend the rite at our home parish.

It was a cold but sunny day. But what was most beautiful, was sharing the blessed event with so many familiar faces. Karl's parents, sister (and her girls,) a special friend from our college days, and (of course) her godparents, turned out in grand form.

Clare was baptized by our newly ordained Associate pastor, Fr James--whose ordination Clare attended in utero :)

Thank you, Lord, for this beautiful Sacrament!

Click below for the photos.

Clare's Baptism Slideshow
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