Not being organized enough to ever participate in Jen’s Quick Takes
, I have to content myself with doing my own version on Sunday — the Weekend Wrap-Up. It’s not on Friday and it’s not limited to 7 things, but it’ll have to do for me.
1. Lesson Learned: You would think after 13 years of being a mom, and 14 years of being married to a very fair skinned man, that I would be on top of the whole sunscreen issue. Alas, I am not, and my children are paying for it dearly. We went to the pool on Wednesday and while I slathered the young girls with SPF 50, I told the older ones to take care of themselves. Did I double check? You’d think I would have, but I didn’t. Needless to say, my kids are burned… especially the boys. (Christopher has specifically asked that the phrase “lobster red” not be used to describe him, so let that show how bad it is)They have been shirtless for 5 days now, and couldn’t even make it to Mass this morning, since anything on their sunburns is extremely painful. The next time we make it to the pool, EVERY kid gets SPF 50, AND an inspection before heading out.
2. Projects Accomplished: Since we haven’t ventured outside since Wednesday (no, it’s not overkill… they REALLY don’t need any exposure to the sun right now!) we’ve been busy doing all sorts of fun indoor stuff. The kids are learning that you really CAN find activities to do other than TV watching or computer games. Friday proved to be an exceptionally creative day for us — messy, but creative. Reilly sewed a cute hat for herself out of felt, Kathryn made doves and puppets, the little girls also made puppets, and the boys took the bag of colored pipe cleaners and made men appropriately called “the pipe cleaner boys.” Being pipe cleaners, their job is to… yes, clean pipes. I keep finding them tucked away in straws, sippy cup lids, etc, “doing their job.” I have to admit, it’s making me smile!
So, what did I do?
First, I redid my “Control Journal” (from FlyLady). I can’t really show many pictures since the pages are filled with lots of personal information, but I’ll tell you about it —
The first page has emergency contact numbers, including directions to our house (in case a babysitter needs to direct emergency personnel to our house), cell phone numbers, phone numbers for neighbors, etc.
Next comes a page filled with info on each child — weight, allergies, birthdate, etc. Again, if a babysitter needs to get help fast for medicine or whatever, they’ve got it all right there. It had been several years since I updated this, so it was time! On that page is also a typical bedtime routine. Rather useless for the older kids, I know, but still helpful for the younger ones.
Next comes a page of easy meal ideas. My mom (who is a great cook) likes to have some quick ideas like this when she stays to watch the kids whenever I’m in the hospital giving birth (yeah, I think we’ve got this routine down by now!)
Next comes daily routines, followed by zone routines:
A master calendar page of EVERYTHING that goes on my yearly calendars (in case of computer problems, I’ve got a handwritten copy of birthdays, death days, sacramental days, etc..)
Followed by a home decorating section, in which I’ve saved paint chips (and names and colors) for all the rooms in the house, in case we ever need it. This section also includes pages ripped out of various magazines for decorating ideas.
Then, I decided it was time to tackle more projects that have been on my mind for far too long. For example, take a look at this ironing board:
Abysmal, is it not? My husband brought this into our marriage 14 years ago, and I believe his mother (an expert “dumpster diver,” as we call them) found it by the side of the road a few years before. I have HATED this cover for 14 years. So, I took it off, laid it down on a piece of free fabric that I got a few years ago from a friend, quickly sketched out the cover and end pocket, hemmed it and zigzagged a string around it so I could tighten it, replaced the foam, CLEANED the frame (who knew it was white under there? Sheesh…)and voila!
It won’t win any awards, but perhaps I’ll be a bit more inspired to iron!
Then, since I had my sewing machine out ANYWAY (it’s a pain to drag it out of the closet and set it up, so I don’t do it all that often), I decided it was time to make those art smocks that I had been wanting to do for several years now. I made the original pattern after the art smock that I wore when I was in kindergarten… again, just laid it down on some newspaper, eyeballed the basic shape, and quickly sewed it together with some bias tape on the outside.
Two happy girls with their new art smocks!
In fact, Grace liked hers so much she wore it the rest of the evening… through dinner… and managed to fall asleep in it.
Anyone else like me, by the way? I collect fabric that I like, and then I never use it because I like it too much! Goofy… so I’m glad to have used up some of my stash. I need to find uses for all of it and QUIT SAVING IT.
Can’t leave my husband out of all this. He’s in the process of finishing up lots of little projects that have been piling up over the years. The biggest one right now is building a shed in the back. After enclosing our carport, we lost storage space for all of his tools, which have been taking up serious closet space in our home ever since. How bad is it? Well, let’s just say that the little girls don’t even HAVE a closet… it’s filled with tools. Same with the closet in our new office… and the wonderful bookcases dh built in the office… it’s just too sad.
Grace decided to go out and help Daddy with his project. Keep in mind that it’s 97 degrees out there in the shade, and THIS is how she decided to go out:
DH says she’s being incredibly helpful, though! (as an aside, please don’t look at my backyard. It’s truly a “walk of shame” for me and I know it’s bad…)
3. Baby shower: I’ve got a wonderful group of friends who graciously threw me a baby shower! (Baby #8 tends to inherit some rather ratty things..)
Is this not cute? Many thanks to “M” and “P” for this one!
Not knowing how some of them feel about having their pictures plastered on my blog, for now I’ll just show a happy me thrilled to have so many people love and care for my family. What would I do without them? God bless you all!!!! (yeah, I wear this dress a lot… see my banner picture. It’s cool, it has been a wonderful pregnancy dress, and I’m running out of options!)
4. Shopping Score! We take out a certain amount of money each week for groceries, and my job is to stay under as best as possible (I love a challenge!) This week’s challenge, however, was large — I had to take out $70 to cover all the back-to-school supplies needed for Monday (you start buying binders and notebooks for each kid, and it adds up quickly!!). Even with this HUGE amount taken out of my grocery budget, I still managed to come home with $5 left over! I am feeding each person of my family for less than $20 for the entire week — AND we are eating WELL, with lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, homemade bread, etc. I am so excited!!! (praying before shopping is ALWAYS the best option!)
5. Final prep work for homeschooling: Seeing as I was able to buy all the binders and such for homeschooling, the kids spent yesterday afternoon getting them all ready… picking out paper for the covers, setting up their tabs and pencil cases, etc. EVERY single one of them (including my most reluctant homeschooler, Thomas) said, “I can’t WAIT to start tomorrow!”
Praise God… let’s hope the enthusiasm lasts!
Hope you enjoyed our weekend wrap-up… leave me a comment with links to your blog and all your accomplishments, so I can celebrate and enjoy your domestic victories as well!