Tuesday, October 31

Under the Knife

My sweet husband has been suffering in silence with some issues relating to the abscess that he had surgery for in August 2016 and yesterday was the first step towards getting him healthy again.  Thankfully,  his surgery was very quick and he was able to come home right away.  We were pretty worried about how he would feel after the procedure, but he's come through so well.  Glory to God!

Monday, October 30

Preparing for Thanksgiving - Monday

If you'd like to see our Thanksgiving Menu and peruse the recipes that we'll be using this year, click HERE.

Sunday, October 29

Our Thanksgiving Menu



Hors d'oeuvres
Vegetable and Dip Platter
Flatbread with Goat Cheese, Figs, and Prosciutto
Cheese Platter
Main Course
Mashed Potatoes*
Cranberry Sauce*
Vanilla Ice Cream 

* made by my mother-in-law

Saturday, October 28

Happiness is Homemade

Here is our daughter's most recent cross-stitch project. She was given a huge bag of patterns and kits from a parishioner's mother, which was a huge thrill for her!  I'm so glad that she has discovered the art of needlework and hope that she continues to hone and develop it!

Friday, October 27

Letter Board Quote for November

After having the same letter board quote by Louisa May Alcott up since the beginning of August, I finally found a new one...  just in time for Thanksgiving.  I also found the perfect place to display it!

Thursday, October 26


Mama: Why can't I keep you small forever?

Button: "You can't undo what's already been done."

-quoted by our seven-year-old... not from the wonderful children's books that I lovingly read with him, but that dratted television show, Ninjago.

Wednesday, October 25

Moody Autumn Days

The weather seems like it is finally starting to become more autumnal.  This is my favorite time of year and I relish the moody skies and slowly changing leaves.  I bought an enormous pumpkin at Walmart a few days ago and baked my first apple pie of the season on Monday night.  Glorious, glorious October!

I've been enjoying a few episodes of Frasier each evening after the children go to bed.  It is the perfect accompaniment to my striped sock knitting.  I've been getting so much done on this sock each night that my hands ache a little when I go to bed.

My little girl and I took a turn around an antique store that's about five minutes from our house today.  It is crammed full of dishes, art, occasional tables, and knick-knacks... everything is so precariously situated that I need to leave my bag in the car for fear of bumping into a towering stack of plates and wreaking havoc on the shop.  It's a lot of fun to poke around if you're careful, though.

Monday, October 23

Living and Learning: The Week Ahead

Church in the Home
This is an extremely interesting video put out by the Catholic News Service on the growth of Orthodox Christianity in Russia.  It's worth a watch! 

My Wardrobe 
I have added the final piece to my autumn/winter wardrobe and cannot wait for it to come in the mail.  I bought a pair of evergreen corduroy trousers from Land's End.  They are back-ordered, but should be arriving in early November, which is not too long to wait.

On My Bedside Table
Though I am usually a one book at a time kind of person, I began two this past weekend: Affairs at Thrush Green and What She Ate: Six Remarkable Women and the Food that Tells Their Stories.  It's going to be hard for me to choose what to read each night!

In My Knitting Basket
I finally finished my grey Amelie socks and immediately cast on to a plain pair of striped ones.  I'm amazed at how quickly socks go with just stockinette stitches.  Seeing each different color stripe is so exciting...  it's hard to stop knitting each night! 

Have you seen the trailer for the new film, Goodbye Christopher Robin?  It looks wonderful!

Sunday, October 22

An Afternoon at the Beach

Join us on a late October beach day... one of our favorite ways to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, October 21



What's the point of a subdeacon, Mama? Does he eat subs all the time?

Button, age 7

Friday, October 20

Sasha and the Dragon

One of the latest offerings from Ancient Faith Publishing is a new book for children called Sasha and the Dragon, beautifully written by Laura E. Wolf with stunning illustrations by Nicholas Malara.  It is the story of Sasha, a little boy feeling lost and afraid amid big changes:  a new home in a new country full of strangers, a Baba who is suddenly bedridden , and, worst of all, a frightening dragon under his bed.

Wolfe tells Sasha's story in a way that every child can relate to.  Her language perfectly conveys Sasha's fears and his courage in facing them with the help of Saint Michael the Archangel. The illustrations in this book are charged with emotion and Malara's use of light and dark complements this tale in a magical way.

I could not have received Sasha and the Dragon at a better time in our children's life.  Our little 'Sasha' had been having his own fears and this book was instrumental in helping him face these dragons through the intersessions of Archangel Michael.  

Thank you for adding another gem to our children's library, Ancient Faith!

Thursday, October 19

A Green Floral Portrait Dress

Our little girl spent some time with her Auntie Kate whipping up a Portrait Dress from Sense and Sensibility Patterns.  Though Auntie Kate did a lot of the work, Sugar Plum sewed on Kate's sewing machine and got a good sense of all that goes into sewing a dress.  She is pleased as punch with the result and has hardly taken the dress off since it was made!

Wednesday, October 18

Roses All Winter

 I went outside this afternoon to admire the rose bushes.  It's mid October and they are still putting out buds and new leaves.  It is so encouraging to see how well they are thriving.  I was very worried about them during August and September because they developed black spot and needed a lot of extra care.  I am very thankful that they seem to be improving and growing.  

We have a sun-room in the rectory and for the entire time we have lived in this house it has been an empty room.  I am planning to move the potted rose bushes inside in a week or so and I am looking forward to filling the sun-room with beauty.  According to the nursery, these particular roses will bloom all year long if they are in the right climate and if they are fertilized.  I cannot even imagine how lovely it will be to have roses blooming continuously all through the cold months.  What luxury!  It will be like living in an E.F. Benson novel.

Tuesday, October 17


In far too many places in England today, the agreeable habit of taking afternoon tea has vanished.

'Such a shocking waste of time,' says one.

'Much too fattening a meal with all that dreadful starch,' says another.

'Quite unnecessary, if one has had lunch or proposes to eat in the evening,' says a third.

All very true, no doubt, but what a lot of innocent pleasure these strong-minded people are missing! The very ritual of tea-making, warming the pot, making sure that the water is just boiling, inhaling the fragrant steam, arranging the tea-cosy to fit snugly around the precious container, all the preliminaries lead up to the exquisite pleasure of sipping the brew from thin porcelain, and helping oneself to hot buttered scones and strawberry jam, a slice of feather-light sponge cake or home-made shortbread."

Miss Read

Monday, October 16

Living and Learning: The Week Ahead

In the Kitchen
I have been churning out autumnal foods:  stew, chicken pot pie, biscuits, apple cake, etc.  One thing that I haven't made yet is Alicia's sour cream apple pie.  I think that I will have to remedy that this week!

Have you seen the trailer for the new Murder on the Orient Express movie?

On My Bedside Table
I'm reading my way through the Thrush Green series.  They are such comforting stories, so I really relish my little visits to the Cotswolds.

Of General Interest
I spotted this video on a friend's Facebook page and was fascinated by it! 

In My Knitting Basket
I'm sure that you will not be surprised to find that I have yet to finish my grey Amelie sock.  Knitting it has been dragging on for such a long time, but the end is in sight:  two more repeats of the pattern and then it is on to the toe.  I can't wait to wear these socks!

Friday, October 13

Silver from 1866

I spent a little time today polishing silver from 1866.  My sisters and I inherited a few things from a beloved gentleman who we thought of as a grandfather.  It has been a joy to bring some of his treasures back to their former beauty.

Thursday, October 12

Autumn's First Blush

 These rainy days have me convinced that autumn is really on her way.  There's a smidge of chill in the air and a tinge of color on the trees.

Wednesday, October 11

Rainy Wednesday

Today was another rainy day, so we spent a little time picking out fabric and sewing things for our daughter's next project.  Afterward we went to the bookstore to browse, eat pastries, and mediating arguments at the train table. 

Monday, October 9

Waiting for Auntie Kate

 My darling sister and her little ones will be arriving today for a few days!  It is so hard to wait for them to get here!

Sunday, October 8

A Trip to Terrain and Our Autumnal Porch

Join me as I take a trip to Terrain in Pennsylvania and then bring home mums and pumpkins to decorate our front porch.

Saturday, October 7

Saturday Morning Pancakes

 Our middle son has been so interested in plating his food lately.  He decorated his pancake this morning with clementine segments and mini chocolate chips.

My absolute favorite pancake recipe is from Joy of Cooking.  I never have buttermilk in the house, so I make it for this recipe by putting two tablespoons of white vinegar in my measuring cup and adding milk to that to make a cup and a half of 'buttermilk.' When I measure out the dry ingredients, I also add in 1/2 a teaspoon of baking soda to make the pancakes nice and fluffy.  I also always add the optional vanilla and fry up the pancakes in my trusty cast iron skilled with a knob of butter to keep the pancakes from sticking. 

On the Feast of Saint Innocent

O Holy Father Innocent
In obedience to the will of God
You accepted dangers and tribulations
Bringing many peoples to the knowledge of truth.
You showed us the way,
Now by your prayers help lead us into the Kingdom of Heaven.
Happy Namesday, Father John!!

Thursday, October 5


 Thursdays are our busy days, but they are also the days that I can get the most leisurely things done for myself.  While I wait for our little violinists, I knit.  While I wait for them to shoot hoops during basketball clinic, I read.  It's not a bad gig, this homeschooling thing.

Wednesday, October 4

Whirlwind Visiting

What a whirlwind the past couple of days have been!  We tagged along with Papa on a business trip and were able to visit my parents and father-in-law, tend Ivanna's grave, and run a few errands at some stores that we don't have nearby.  We were able to do a lot, but I'm exhausted!

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