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Hoping to both attend – our co-op has a training session that I have to attend but Jeff’s planning to be there even if it doesn’t end in time. Looking forward to seeing everyone!
Alicia, I am so glad that you will be able to go to Florida to support your aunt and uncle. We will pray for wisdom and strength for both of them; it is almost impossible to imagine all the emotions this must bring up for them as well as for everyone who loves them. It is so heart-breaking not be to able to be with those we love when they are so ill. May the peace of Christ be with you and your loved ones and may your travels be safe!
Just saw your post – congratulations to you with all those beautiful boys and we will pray for your son as well.
Hi, April! Your story is so inspiring and lovely – God is good! Congratulations on the birth of your son! The first year is such a roller coaster, isn’t it?
Our family has also been feeling a bit down with the dramatic changes to this year and summer as well. How has Jazzelle been doing with it? Our older two are really missing their friends but we’ve been trying to keep them busy. Wishing you well!
Allegra, I absolutely love Catholic Stuff You Should Know! Everyone on there is so relatable and I love the banter. 😉 When Jazz Loon came on the scene I had to laugh because I grew up slightly north of that area and hearing loon calls used that way it was pretty hilarious.
I also enjoy listening to Fr. Mike Schmitz. I appreciate how he can say so much in a short period of time because sometimes I do not have as much time to listen as I’d like.
One other podcast that I listen to fairly regularly is The Catholic Conversation with Steve and Becky Green. They have a lot of very interesting guests and I’ve learned a lot through what they have shared.
Really loving the recommendations for podcast. I found myself wondering what other people were listening to as well.
The age gap certainly does add a lot of “spice” around here as well. They all adore our youngest, just not always how he is constantly in their stuff. 🙂
I bet he has! So many times I head down to our van only to see Owen (also 7) shooting me a mischievous look as he scoots into the driver’s seat and demands to know just how long it will be before HE can drive. It sounds like he and Henry would have a lot of fun together!
It’s just an incredible blessing to churches though – thank you as a family for being willing to step into such an intense program to serve others, Laureen.
You’re further ahead musically than I am – of any of the family who have tried an instrument so far, I am undeniably the least talented. I am currently trying to resurrect my (somewhat nonexistent) skills on the flute. But playing is so fun, even if it doesn’t sound great. Thanks to our homeschool co-op, I’m a bit better with the tin whistle. 😉
(I am hoping that this post ends up responding to your reply – I haven’t quite figured out how to do that yet. Maybe this is the time that I manage it!)
What a beautiful family you have! Our oldest is turning 9, so it’s nice to know others who have experienced those stages already. When Alicia mentioned that Stephanie taught her the correct way to use Vegemite it brought back a lot of memories for me. When I was about five, I was at a friend’s house and she offered me some toast and handed me a knife and a jar of Vegemite with no explanation other than to assure me that it was going to be delicious. I thought it was like jam! Let’s just say, I ended up doing it wrong. The next time I was at her house I must admit that I avoided both the Vegemite and the Marmite. 🙂 I had learned my lesson. Maybe some day…
So glad that you and Stephanie were able to visit the States together. Hopefully you’ll be able to visit again!
It’s so generous of you to give your time to guiding children through faith formation! I can’t tell you how much our family appreciates the catechists at our parish. Our children’s faith grows when they come in contact with others who value it like we do and it is such a blessing. Logan sounds like she enjoys adventuring – isn’t it wonderful to explore the world with our kids?
Hello to another homeschooling family! We’ve been homeschooling for a few years now and have seen a lot of benefits for our children. Some challenges too, but it has been so worth it.
Do you have any favorite games that you’d like to recommend? Our kids are just starting to really get into them and they always love to try new ones.
Around here, we have too many shepherd and not enough sheep! Our four all seem to have very… strong… opinions on everything. 🙂
It must have been fantastic to have Mike and Alicia’s input from the beginning. I found their podcast several years ago and it was so helpful. I certainly felt less alone while trying to navigate this fascinating and at times daunting world of parenting.
Wow! You play the violin – that sounds amazing. Congratulations on starting the Deaconate program. I’ve heard that it can be intense sometimes but it sounds like you have a fantastic outlook and have a lovely family. So nice to meet you!
Where I grew up it was pretty flat too, near Lake Superior, so got to spend some time near beaches too, but now that I’m in PA, I’m loving the hillier country and mountains. Just so beautiful – I love being outside! I always feel better when I can be outside for a while.
Our kids love to read and be read to so much and I do too! Before I found the RAR podcast, we were doing a ton of reading just because my mom always put such an emphasis on it – she read to us all the way up through 8th grade. Being able to get some suggestions about what to read has been helpful. Right now our 18 month old is firmly digging in and refusing to listen to much other than the “Biscuit” books – every other line seems to be “Woof! Woof!” It’s hilarious!
Isn’t she??? I love her sense of humor and the way she makes everything so accessible.
Allegra, I loved that you had a link to some booklists when you replied to Anh’s introduction. I was going to respond to you there but couldn’t figure out how. Ouch. 🙂 Have you ever listened to “The Read Aloud Revival” podcast? If you haven’t, Sarah Mackenzie has some really amazing free resources with booklists for a lot of different ages and topics. I absolutely love listening to her author interviews and getting her insights into what would be great reads for our four kiddos.
And yes, the kids’ nap time is SO important! As my oldest ones have given it up, we have a “quiet time” instead. 😉
Anh, if you ever want to talk books, definitely count me in! I love getting recommendations from people and my kids go through books FAST. With little ones, sometimes the repeated readings of books get a bit intense. Important developmentally, but intense. 🙂 I’m sure you have several that you can just do from memory by now!
I visited an aunt in California years ago and she took me to lot of different places. The Sierra Foothills are a gorgeous area – I loved being in Northern California. It is such a great place for exploring and hiking. You must have so much fun!
You’re so right, Claire! One of the things I love about Pittsburgh is that while I am in a city, it still looks and feels small town friendly, you know? I actually ended up out here for college and then attempted to move back to the Midwest, only to find myself back out in PA a year later. Ha! I guess God had different plans than mine. I do love it here though and after being here so long, I can’t quite imagine being somewhere else. We’re up in the North Hills area, not quite Wexford, but around that area. In what part of the city do you live? (And phew! We’re not too far behind on the tent plan. I’m thinking of it as a sort of “backyard fort to be” at present…)
Welcome to homeschooling, Kelly! I’m so excited that you have a passion for teaching about Theology of the Body – I would love any tips you have on how to go about that. Our children participate in our parish’s Good Shepherd program but I’d like to do a bit more with them at home to reinforce TOB. It sounds like you and Lance are very involved; I admire your energy!
I have found that being part of a homeschooling co-op brings me some much needed accountability (I tend to drift a bit some days – whoops!) and a lot of emotional support and practical advice. Wishing you well in your journey and if you ever want to talk about the ins and outs and ups and downs of your journey, I’m definitely up for it. 🙂
Hello to you both! I grew up in northern Michigan and I have a deep and abiding love of crosscountry skiing and snowshoeing – I still have a pair of snowshoes and keep hoping for a time when we have enough snow here in PA to go.
It sounds like you are in the midst of an amazing toddler boom! Our kids are a bit further apart in age but our youngest is 18 months and it is always a wild ride. Your kids sound like they are delightful! You’ve taken bigger steps than we have to get camping; Jeff always wants to but we haven’t managed it yet. Tent purchased? Yes. Tent actually set up outside? Um, not quite. New goals for us!
Congratulations, Alyssa and Dane, and thanks for posting, especially with so much going on with your beautiful little boy on the way! So excited to see another Pittsburgh family here and it’s wonderful that you and Dane are exploring so many options. The name Medical Monks is a great one and I love how it reflects the Catholic faith. What a great idea your friend had with the “restaurant week” – so clever!
Hello, Anita! We’re from Pittsburgh, so I’m not sure how close we are, but it’s so nice to meet someone who is pretty close. Life on a farm must keep you quite busy. My husband converted about six years ago as well. We heard about Family Fest a while back on the podcast and I am super curious about going sometime. It sounded like a great way to meet families with shared values! Glad to meet you!
Hello, Monica and Cody! Living on a ranch sounds so interesting! I’m guessing that my kids would probably decide that they would want to run away to Texas if they knew you had horses and dogs. Our daughters both think horses are amazing. Meanwhile, I’m guessing my boys would be running for anything with a motor. So glad to see you here!
Calling it being “cookie ninjas” made it sound a whole lot more exciting to the kids then “hey there, guys, we’re going to go give away a bunch of cookies you’d rather eat yourselves”. 🙂
Kat and Pierce, we certainly appreciate your service. Moving frequently and building a new church family each time certainly sounds challenging but it sounds like you have a great plan in place for how to handle that.
Sounds like you have a busy and fun life! Congratulations on the addition of bees – it sounds like an exciting adventure.
Congratulations! The minivan life isn’t so bad – although I must admit that I do miss my zippy little car from what feels like forever ago. 🙂 Great to meet another homeschooling family.
So glad that you are here! Sounds like you have an incredibly beautiful story and isn’t God amazing? He just makes the most gigantic mountains vanish. It’s great to meet another family of four – sounds like our kids are similar ages. We’re also learning every day from our own messy family and seeing where this journey leads us. 🙂 Looking forward to getting you know you!
Hi, Nicole and Cameron! Arizona sounds like a gorgeous part of the country – my older brother travels there frequently for business and always says how beautiful it is. He sends the kids a lot of pics so that they can “travel” with him. So nice to meet you!
Amanda, I can so relate! I remember attending Mass as a child and doing the once or twice a year reconciliation services but not much else. My mother was Catholic and my father Protestant; he was very supportive but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t raised as “Catholic” as I could have been. Our faith is so rich and beautiful and more than a little overwhelming when I try to figure out how to encourage my children to embrace the faith in ways that aren’t disconnected or confusing. At least we’re learning, right? So glad that you and your husband joined! And at some point, I might need to get some advice on how to keep houseplants alive. It would be nice to have at least one survive me.