Saturday, July 30

Butterflies on the Butterfly Bush...

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail
Red-Banded Hairstreak
Silver-Spotted Skipper       
We came home to our butterfly bushes fairly bursting with blooms and teeming with butterflies, moths, and other insects.  If we're lucky, we may be able to see hummingbirds in the coming days.

Wednesday, July 27

Wilmington, North Carolina | Day One


Charleston, South Carolina | Day Two


Holy Ascension | Charleston, South Carolina

There is a hidden gem in Charleston, and that is the church of Holy Ascension.  The temple was designed by Andrew Gould and is simply breathtaking.   There are numerous details that show just how much artistry and care went into the design and construction of this church.  The gardens are so lovely and the little bit of iconography that they have completed is magnificent.  Visit if you can!

Tuesday, July 26

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens | Charleston, South Carolina

While Father John spent the day filming at Holy Ascension yesterday, the children and I visited Magnolia Plantation and Gardens.  We spent some time this past school year studying Harriet Turman and the Underground Railroad, so I was pleased to make this trip to tie everything we read about to a place that we could actually visit.  The nature available for us to observe was astounding.   There were herons, alligators, peacocks, guinea hens, turtles, and more.  It was also lovely to see the plantation home on this vast property.   If you get a chance to visit Charleston,  this is an excellent place to stop.

Monday, July 25

North and South Carolina

We are traveling to both North and South  Carolina for Father's work this week.  I'm most looking forward to our visit to Charleston!

Sunday, July 24

This Week's Menu...

Coffee Hour
Sausage Stuffed Jalapenos

Ice Cream
Vanilla Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting for Sugar Plum's Namesday

Cold Cereal 
Pancakes c
Eggs, Bacon, and Toast
Toasted Bagels

Ham Sandwiches
Tuna Sandwiches on Toast
Peanut Butter and Jam

Namesday Dinner Out
Roasted Chicken, Stuffing, Mashed Potatoes, and Peas
Garden Salads topped with Roasted Chicken
Spaghetti and Tomato Sauce
Caesar Salads

In Full...

There was big announcement today in church...  an anonymous donor paid off the church's mortgage of $318,000 in full!!  Glory to God for all things!


Thursday, July 21

After the Storm...


We noticed that the sky was getting dark just as we finished eating dinner, so we moved to the porch swing to enjoy the storm together. 

 I told the Merry Trio about how when my mother was a little girl, she would run to her grandmother's house down the block when a storm was brewing, so that they could sit together on their wrap-around porch and eat a dish of ice cream during thunder and lightening storms.  The children loved hearing that.

The rain came down furiously for just a few minutes before the sun started peeking through the clouds again.  When the thunder stopped we hopped off the porch and were so happy to find a double rainbow arching over the church.  It was so lovely!

Tuesday, July 19

Tuesday Afternoon...


The blooms on our hydrangea bush are starting to fade, but that is no problem.  I often like drooping flowers even better than ones in their first blush.  These purple-y ones are just so breathtaking.  I'm hoping to dry them so that we can enjoy vases of dried hydrangea all autumn and winter. 

One of the best reasons to bake for namesdays is the leftover cake.  I enjoyed a sliver of Sugar Plum's vanilla and cream cheese frosting confection and it hit the spot.  Don't you like the sprinkles on top?  I bought a little jar of them a few months ago and just love how they look on both chocolate and vanilla cakes.

Monday, July 18

Living and Learning: The Week Ahead...

Orthodox Home 
Have you heard about my husband's free Orthodoxy in America app? It is much more than just a church locator!  It also brings together news, social feeds, audio, video and 360 tours from the major Orthodox media outlets.  Check your App and Play Stores to download now!

As part of my new campaign to get moving by trying to walk 10,000 steps a day, I've also been trying to up my water intake.  I love using my water bottle to help measure my intake (especially when I'm on the move), but this gorgeous glass and ceramic water bottle will be a nice addition to our table...  our children love to pour and this will encourage us all to drink more water at mealtimes.

Kitchen, Pantry, Table
I spotted one of those little cooking videos on Facebook and it looked so yummy that I decided to make it for coffee hour.  These delectable sausage stuffed jalapenos were a huge hit!

I only found this collection of articles on Restoring Home Life, Room by Room by John Cuddeback (and I believe that there will be more over the coming days and weeks) today, so I haven't be able to read them all yet.  So far the post are:  A Space for Children in the Home, The Kitchen:  The Last Stand of the Home, A Room for the Family, and The Marriage Bed:  Can it Really Work? 

Out and About
We visited the beach for the first time in over a month yesterday and it was great to be there after such a long absence.  Things have been pretty busy for us of late and we haven't taken advantage of our closeness to the ocean.  My husband and I have decided to try to get out to the beach each week (whenever possible) for the remainder of the summer and the first months of autumn.   

Finally Celebrating...

Causing meekness, humility and love to dwell in thy soul,
    Thou didst earnestly serve the suffering,
    O holy passion-bearer Princess Elizabeth;
    Wherefore, with faith thou didst endure sufferings and death for Christ, with the martyr Barbara.
    With her pray for all who honor you with love.

Saint Elisabeth's life can be found here.


 We celebrated our little girl's namesday today!  She was attending camp on July 5th, which is Saint Elisabeth's Day, and so we moved the feast to a time when we could all be together.  It was a lovely family day with gifts, lunch out, time in the pool, and a vanilla cake with cream cheese frosting. 
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