Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Table Talk Tuesday

Cmash Loves to Read”=

Join the fun by clicking the button above!

My three tidbits for today:

1. I love office supplies/school supplies. They are fun, and they make me happy! :) My favorite one that I recently found when doing a big purge before the school year started: my staple-less stapler! What is your favorite odd thing?

2. I only wear skirts/dresses. Why? Because I love being a girl and boys cannot (or at least should not) wear them! And, I cringe to see slacks riding up or bunching on women. I think skirts and dresses modestly and beautifully frame a woman's figure. I also love they way I swish when I walk! What is your favorite thing to wear?

3. Lilacs, roses, lilies, and sunflowers are my favorites. What is yours?

Endings and New Beginnings

Life is a series of beginnings and endings. This picture symbolizes that so well, don't you think? This is Mr. Thorns and I on our wedding day, nearly 20 years ago. We were just kids. His grandparents were not well enough to attend, so between the ceremony and reception we visited them. By our second anniversary they were both gone.

This is Christmas 2008, all of my children. End of the year, beginning of a new one. End of the Blessed Mother's pregnancy and beginning of the life of Our Saviour.

And another ending/beginning is moving. This is a picture of the day we moved The Oldest to an apartment. You know the place, in NJ, where I keep getting lost :).

This one is a new beginning. I have submitted my first post to Catholic Mothers Online. I am not sure when it will run, I will let you know when it does. My first post talks about endings and new beginnings, so it does fit here with the theme.

And on that note, if I am absent from my usual haunts online, it is because of all those changes we are facing in our lives. But, I will be back, so don't forget about me. And I will try to keep posting :).

Sunday, August 29, 2010

What is Vulgarity?

The always elegant and talented author Elena Maria Vidal, on her blog Tea at Trianon, has provided us with a thoughtful post analyzing a common behavior in today's society. Go read her post and take a look around her blog.

Tea at Trianon: What is Vulgarity?

Friday, August 27, 2010

Fearless Friday: The Medical Edition

It feels like all of my requests are for medical concerns this week, at least the big ones are. In no particular order:

1. A young friend of mine, a college freshman, who had been named captain of his college soccer team just received word from his physician that due to an injury he will not be able to play for ONE FULL YEAR. This is devastating news for a young athlete, who at this present moment, is on his way to the surgeon to discuss options. Please pray for Nate.

2. My father-in-law had valve replacement and bypass surgery earlier this week. He is doing well so far, and we do not anticipate any problems. He is in his late 70s.

3. My friend Sweet Mary who has started a cancer blog, and has a personal blog as well. She is in stage 4 cancer.

4. My friend who has a non-viable baby she is carrying to term. We are praying for a miracle. She is due in a few short weeks.

And for non-medical prayer requests:

1. For my husband to have continued success in his part-time job. This is helping us, but he really need full time work as well, in order for us to survive financially. Part-time work is wonderful, and we are grateful, but 8 people cannot survive on a part-time income based upon a 16-hour work week.

2. For my children as we gear up to start our homeschooing in the next two weeks, and The Oldest, who will resume college classes as a sophomore, in early September.

3. For myself to get through my classes so I can start earning an income with benefits as soon as possible.

4. For Randy, who has a very important interview at 2:20 p.m. today. Please pray for him to get the job, he has been out of work 24 months now!! He is Angie's husband, Angie hosts Fearless Friday.

And please feel free to add your own prayer intentions. I am praying for all of the prayers in your heart, both those spoken aloud and those shared. I welcome prayer intentions in the comments section and will visit all linked to Fearless Friday over the next few days. Also linked to Lighthouse of Prayer. I have had some devastating personal news today. We could use all the prayers we can get while we try to determine the best course of action.

May God bless all of my blog readers and followers.

Follow Friday 40 and over

I have had this button on my blog for a while now, and have not actually linked up yet. I usually do Fearless Friday (which I will today) and the Book Blogger Hop on Friday, but this week I wanted to find some other bloggers out there in my *cough* age bracket *cough*. LOL! So welcome to those over-40 Bloggers, I'm looking forward to meeting you! Have a cup of coffee and take a look around! And by way of an introduction:

I am Lily, which is a pseudonym that I use to protect my children from the ramblings of their mother, and my husband from having his wife's name found on a google search while he is job hunting. He has been out of work for over a year now, laid off when his company decided to relocate to Singapore.

So, Lily Thorns (me), is married for 20 years to Mr. Thorns, and together we have six children. They are The Oldest (girl) who is in college, The Big Guy (boy) who is in high school, Tiger (girl) who is 12, Boo (boy) who is 10, Bananas (girl) who is 8, and Missy (girl)who is 6. I occasionally put up pictures of them, and you can see the blog of my children ( a new endeavor in our homeschool) here. And there is another bit of information, I am a 14-year homeschool veteran who need to pull out a new bag of tricks this year to freshen up our homeschool. We will be adding transliteracy to our curriculum this year.

All of what I write about here is true, just the names have been changed. Starting in September, I have been invited to write for Catholic Mothers Online. I am very excited and have my first deadline coming up on September 1st.

I am finishing up my classes to become a medical transcriptionist so I can work from home. It is a lucrative career, and I'm probably a month away from finishing. I'm not exactly certain when I will be done because I have gotten sidetracked preparing for our homeschooling year. I also have two other part-time jobs as a librarian and a receptionist.

That is me in a nutshell! Maybe when I lose a few more pounds I will post a picture. I'm probably down over 40 pounds at this point, though I'm not exactly sure because we do not own a scale. I will have to weigh myself, when no one is looking, at Rite Aid or some other public scale!

Have a great day, and WELCOME to all of the Over 40 crowd!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Overheard at the Thorns Home Today: Toothfairy Edition

*NOTE* The image is a link to where I found this picture.

My nearly-seven-year-old daughter, Missy, has been sporting a loose front tooth all week. It was crooked on one side and stuck in tight on the other, so it hung oddly. Poor thing, being the youngest of 6 she suffered the teasing and torment of her brothers. "You look like a Nanny McPhee" they told her, and had her nearly in tears. Of course, big sister, Tiger, came to the rescue and told her that when she was six, she had a chipped front tooth she couldn't wait to be rid of! Gotta love big sisters!

For nearly every tooth she's lost, Missy has been taunted into yanking it out herself, by those bigger brothers. Of course they were never brave enough, but always one to rise to a challenge, when she's had enough she will yank it out, sniffle a little, and then place it under her pillow.

That's where the lousy durned tooth fairy comes in. That slacker is constantly forgetting to pick up teeth around here. Feeling especially bad about the circumstances that caused this latest hole in her mouth, I was determined to call that tooth fairy right up and make sure she showed last night!! But when I went to check on the kids, who's little eyes popped open? So I left a note for hubby (who was working late at his part time job) to make sure he calls that tooth fairy.

This morning, there was a very excited little girl who came down the stairs with cash in hand. "Mommy look! I got $10." Ummm, no, that was not a ten, lol. There'd be mutiny if Missy had a $10 under her pillow!!! "Wow!" I said, "It has been a while since the tooth fairy showed up on the first night!" which was echoed by a chorus of yesses. *LOL*

Savoring the moment, Missy sits on the couch with her siblings to discuss how happy she is there is no wiggly tooth in her mouth, and now she is going to have BIG teeth, etc. But then her voice drops down to a whisper, which of course causes me to perk up. She tells her big sister, "Tiger, I think the tooth fairy beat me up when she came last night. My ankle hurts!"

BWAHAHAHAH!! That poor Tooth Fairy cannot get it right, even when she gets it right! I always thought the tooth fairy was a sweet, perhaps an air-head, but sweet fairy, I guess perhaps the picture above is more like it. After all she beat up Missy last night!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Prayer request

My father-in-law is having a double bypass and 1-2 heart valves replaced in the morning. Please keep him in your prayers, as well as my mother-in-law, my husband, his siblings and all the family.

Thank you!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Over My Head!!

Uh-oh! In my zeal to get organized for Back-to Homeschool, I got in over my head...we have sorting projects in 6 of our 15 rooms...WHAT A MESS!!!

Back to work! We are in the throes of "must get worse before it gets better" and it is not fun!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Not Back To School

I am busily preparing for our new home school year. I am putting a new system into place this year, and therefore I have a bit more work ahead of me to get things set up! One of my friends did a post recently about the system she uses at home, Workboxes and I'm going to give it a go. I am VERY excited about this. It is super-organized, works well with large families, and students of all ages.

This last year was a organizational nightmare because Daddy was laid off and Mommy had to work. I have been homeschooling for 14 years, I have one entering into her second year of college and 5 still at home. What sold me on the workbox system is the fact that it teaches independence, has self-motivators built right in, and works even if Mommy has to leave the house for a 3-hour shift at the library! Of course, library time can be built in, and I suspect I can load a few workboxes into my car and let my students continue to work there!

Typically, our days run like this (this includes some modification for workbox plans):

Everyone up at 7:00 a.m.

Personal hygiene, make beds, morning chores, breakfast, breakfast clean-up.

8:15 a.m.

Last call for finishing up chores, inspection of chores, final clean-up of breakfast dishes.

8:30 a.m.

Clock into school and begin with morning meeting/prayers/group activity.


Depending upon the group activity, individual work begins during this 15 minute time period.

9-10:30 a.m.

Each child begins their own daily schedule, as laid out in the workboxes by mom the night before. If Mommy gets it right, she will have strategically organized the work-with-mommy classes for each child in a realistic schedule. I expect some tweaking to occur the first couple of weeks. I also expect Daddy will be around some days, and I have a high-schooler and middle-schooler to assist with the youngers as needed.

10:30 to 10:45 a.m.

This is almost a sacred time in our homeschool. The kids look forward to this, I wouldn't dream of messing with it in the 14 years of homeschooling it has always been consistent. Snack time!! Their little tummies are pre-programmed. We started with a regimented and scheduled snack time because The Oldest is a carefully controlled hypoglycemic. But, it is a nice 15-minute break where they nourish their bodies, and if they are wiggly and restless, Mommy has been known to send them running laps around the perimeter of our two-acre property to burn up some excess energy before settling back into the morning routine.

10:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Resume individual work boxes. Some of the youngers will finish during this time. Although, this year I am adding some physical activities, crafts, and typing into the schedule in a more formal way, therefore, I expect that there will longer days for the littles, but with "fun" activities that promote learning. We were too serious last year, because Mommy was too stressed. We are going to lighten up and put some fun back into our day.

12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

Various phases of lunch and recess. Each student is guaranteed a half hour for lunch, but will likely end up with nearly an hour. They also have lunchtime chores such as cleaning their lunch dishes, and maybe hanging laundry on the line, or bringing some in.

1:30 until ??

Finish up their workboxes. When done they have free time except for chores.

How do the chores work around here? I did a post on that a few months ago.

What curriculum do I use?

It depends. For reluctant readers the cure is The Prairie Primer or one of their other book-based curriculum choices. I cannot recommend this highly enough, and it is so easy to implement. It is also a low-cost option.

All of my children use Saxon Math.

For my other children I use a combination of Catholic Heritage Curricula and Mother of Divine Grace. I also look to see what Alexandra puts up, as she has numerous free resources she finds!

And for my high schooler, we use Oak Meadow.

This post is linked to Heart of the Matter. Join in the fun!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Fearless Friday

I cannot believe another week has passed and it is Friday again!! This has been a wild week at the Thorns home! Toward the end of last week I had to go take care of a few things at the college for The Oldest child. I ended up driving her to work (in NJ!!) so I could take her car to the bus, lock the keys in her car, and take the bus back home. I'll just bet you can see where this is going! As you know, if you are a regular reader, I always seem to get lost when I visit The Oldest. This time I got so lost in Fort Lee, NJ (not even sure how I ended up there, THAT is how lost I was) that by the time I found the park and ride, I had missed the bus. Of course, I did not know that at the time, and I had already locked my keys in the car. I had to sit for 4 hours at the bus stop waiting for The Oldest to finish her shift at work. Of course her very sweet boyfriend told me that I should have called him and he would have retrieved me. I had not wanted to inconvenience him, but next time I will because my poor achy bones were sad in the rainy weather. So this week I am thankful that I am not sitting at a bus station, and that I was safe while there.

I am praying for safe journey today, as I drive with The Oldest back to NJ, and attempt one more time to get to the bus, or perhaps the train this time, without incident.

I am praying for The Oldest, her Futbolista, and his family.

I am praying for Sweet Mary, who started a blog about her journey with the BIG C...Catholic, Cancer, Cured. Please visit her blog and pray for her. Tell her Lily sent you :)

I am praying hubbins gets a full time job very, very soon.

I am praying to get through my classes very, very soon so I can get myself a good paying job.

I am praying for my children to stay on the straight and narrow.

I am praying for a good school year, last year was so difficult with hubbins losing his job. I had to work so many hours outside the house, I'm praying this year will be a better one for my children.

I am praying for a more Christ-centered existence in our home. Unemployment has brought me more spiritual challenges than I ever imagined I would face, and that MUST change now.

And lastly, I am praying for all of you who read my blog. Feel free to share your prayer intentions either in the comment section, or in an email to me. I would be honored to pray for your specific intentions. If not, then you can be assured I pray for the intentions kept within your heart.

This post is linked to Fearless Friday at Angie's Free Spirit Haven and Sweet P's prayer on Tea with Tiffany. God bless!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Rednesday: Drumbeat

Drumbeat. That is the name of the red paint you can see in this picture. The paint that nearly drove my husband mad! You see, last year, we were considering selling our house. We put it on the market, but the market is soooo bad that the only offers we got were insulting. Ones we could not afford to take. To ready the house for market, we painted this room, what we now call the family room, in Drumbeat Red, Ballet Pink, and I have forgotten the name of the trim, it is some shade of creamy pink. Because we were selling the house, (*sheepish grin*) I was going for color over quality of the paint, and chose a cheap paint for the red, based on color alone. I love the color, but the paint made my husband nuts. First, to get such a deep shade you need a gray primer, and when the paint is cheap, about a million coats of the red!

Here you see Missy perched on the couch, showing off the wall colors, and that fabric next to her is the fabric we are going to use to make curtains. Tiger and I are working on that next week, I think.

Here is our Queen Cat, the momma, sitting in the picture window that will be curtained with that striped fabric.

And, here are three more of those red doors (we have 5 in the dining room). You can see here that the dining room is adjacent to the family room. The dining room is gold, navy, and red. The family room has the red below the chair rail and the pink on top.

Soooo, why did that red paint drive my husband batty? Aside from needing a million coats, we had multiple catastrophes with that red paint. One gallon, nearly full, spilled across the dining room floor (thankfully before the old was pulled up and the new laid down). Another gallon was outside, too close to the hose when one of the children decided to clean brushes. So yep, that one got drowned. And of course, because we needed a million coats, we always underestimated the amount of paint to buy in that drumbeat red color.
With each trip to Home Depot to purchase yet another Drum Beat Red, my husband's blood pressure rose. It has, however, been a year. Do you think it is safe to tell him I'd like to put some more of that red into the kitchen now? Mind you, just as an accent color...
This post has been linked to Rednesday on It's a Very Cherry World.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Making of a Naturalist!

I have always been fascinated by nature, though I am a tentative and timid explorer. I like to observe, but am a bit squeamish and reserved. I harbour a secret desire to be a gardener and herbalist. I have taken classes in herbalism, but not finished my course of study. Maybe that will be next up on my to-do list. Get the paying job situated, but then pursue an interest of my own, a genuine interest.

Calpurnia Tate is my hero, one who has inspired me to cultivate the naturalist in my children more this year. As you may know from reading my blog, I homeschool. Calpurnia Tate is the protagonist in the book written by Jacqueline Kelly called The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate.

I recommend this book for all homeschooling parents, for anyone interested in science, for people who grew up in large families, or for anyone wishing to remember how it was to be a child. Also, it is a good read for women's studies both from the homemaker's perspective and from the women's rights point of view.

Set in the summer of 1899 Calpurnia is a nearly-twelve-year-old girl. She lives with her parents, six brothers, grandfather, cook, and housekeeper on a cotton plantation of over 600 acres in Fentress, TX. Known as Callie Vee, she is sandwiched between three older brothers and three younger brothers in the birth and pecking order of the family. They are a wealthy and well respected family within the community. The times are such that Callie is expected to be a homemaker, and she is at that age where she is to start learning the domestic arts. She is a lost soul within her family, her mother is looking forward to her "coming out" in a few years, and Callie is just plain not interested.

She, unexpectedly, finds a kindred spirit in the grandfather she has been afraid of all her life when she musters up the courage to ask him a question about why there were two kinds of grasshoppers, the usual green and huge bright yellow ones. His answer was, "I suspect that a smart young whip like you can figure it out. Come back and tell me when you have."

Callie's reaction was:

So, that was that. My audience with the dragon. I counted it a wash. On the one
hand, he hadn't breathed fire at me, but on the other, he'd been no help at all.

The result of this exchange was Callie decided to hitch a ride with her eldest brother when he went to town, so she could use the library to try and get her answer. Her grandfather, being retired, had taken up the study of nature. He had a little laboratory in the shed out back, and a library filled with books and specimens, which was off limits to everyone. Through dinner conversation between her grandfather and the local minister, she had learned of Darwin's The Origin of Species and felt the controversial book was the one to consult.

At the library Callie is humiliated by the librarian, who thoughtlessly and somewhat cruelly states that such a book is not to be housed in her library, and if she wanted it she would have to pay 50 cents to have it shipped. Did she have 50 cents? Callie's red-faced answer was no. Then the librarian told her she would need a note from her mother before she could read that particular book, did she have such a note? Of course Callie did not. To that the librarian replied, "I thought not. Now, I have books to be shelved. You must excuse me."

Callie was outraged. But she continued to think of the grasshoppers, came up with a theory, and presented it to her grandfather. He was surprised and asked her if she had come up with that idea on her own, or if she had help. She told him about the library, how she could not get the help, or consult the book, and reiterated that it was her own idea. Her grandfather walked her into the inner sanctum of his private library, unlocked the cabinet of extra-special books, and presented her with his copy of Darwin's book, to read at her leisure. After that they were inseparable in their study of nature.

The book makes you want to get a blank journal, go draw pictures, and record your own nature observations. It highlights the awesomeness of nature, and the beauty of inter-generational family relationships. Anyone who reads the book will be entertained and will find themselves more observant of the world around them. This is a J-Fic story and would make a wonderful read-aloud for the entire family. There were parts that were hilarious, and there is overall a lot of love in the book. There is much to discuss, within the pages, and it will get young minds churning. If I had a rating system, this book would get the top rating. It is just that good !!

In light of my beginning thoughts, I shall look for books to inspire the budding naturalist, in both myself and my children. I also plan to read The God of Mischief which is the second book of Paul Bajoria's trilogy. My reading is slowing down between my own classes and my planning of the children's homeschool year.

This post is linked to It's Monday, What Are You Reading?

Friday, August 13, 2010

How Many Books?

How many books do you have on your "To be read" shelf?

Well, I have more than one shelf, more than one nook, more than one tabletop, more than one windowsill. All of which are filled with books to be read. It would number into the hundreds. But my "next up" books number approximately 15. These are the ones I will get to soon, very, very soon.

This post is linked to the blogger hop, all of you hoppers...WELCOME!!

Book Blogger Hop

Fearless Friday

Today I am thankful for my husband's obtaining part-time work. It is not full-time yet, but it is something :) and for something, I am grateful.

I am also thankful for my paycheck today.

I am thankful for my daughter's tuition getting paid.

I am thankful for the amazing people in my life.

I am thankful for a young transplant recipient who had a cath this week which showed zero rejection. And I'm thankful to have this family in my life.

I am praying for a mom who is due to have a child who will not survive.

I am praying for my friend, Sweet Mary, who can use lots of prayers this week, and always.

I am praying for husband to find full time work.

I am praying for all the unemployed.

I am praying for my children to stay on the straight and narrow, and to lead good lives they can be proud of.

I am praying today, for you. If you want particular prayers, please leave a comment or email me at thorns dot lily at gmail dot com.

This post is linked to Fearless Friday.

An Announcement regarding Catholic Mothers Online

Catholic Mothers Online has moved to here. The site is now on Wordpress, moved over from blogger. As informative and interesting as this factoid is, now you can keep up with your favorite Catholic blog, there is more to announce!

Insert drum roll please!

Start scrolling down. (The scroll has been added for dramatic effect.)



...continue scrolling...

...one more time, because I'm just loving the dramatic effect...


I have been invited to write for Catholic Mothers Online!

(You can applaud because I just love that.) If you read my Rednesday post earlier this week, you will be able to see on display in this post that red personality that I usually keep under wraps. I let it out today because I am so excited! I am pleased and honored to have been invited to write for Catholic Mothers Online, I love the blog and I love being a Catholic Mother.

I am not sure when my first post will be put up. My first submission is due on September 1st, to be published at a later date.

Smiley Stay tuned, time for me to get to work!! :)

All smileys are from here.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


I found this through Angie. Red has always been my favorite color. When I was younger, I was bolder, and had more of a Red personality...outgoing, a bit loud, adventurous with fashion and life. Now I'm more subdued, I keep my red personality more under wraps. But that does not mean you will not find red in my life! It is everywhere, so I figured I should participate in Rednesday from It's a Very Cherry World.

Last year we redid our dining room. It was lovely as it was, but was starting to get a bit shabby. After all, six children tend to bang, pick, dig, and peel. Not to mention the dog! Our last dog caused immeasurable damage to our property. He dug up the dining room floor, chewed at the woodwork that survived almost 200 years and made a general mess of things. Last summer we decided, when hubbins was laid off, to tackle that mess.

Here is a picture of one of four red doors in the newly renovated dining room.

You can see the floor is all torn up! The one strip of reddish flooring is what hubbins and the children put down. You can also see the red trim. We coordinated this trim to match the family room, where under the chair rail is also red. I will show you that next time :).

Sunday, August 8, 2010

He does this to me all the time!

My husband. He does this to me all the time. He buys me books, cheap, that look interesting, things he finds when he is out and about. Usually he does well, finding things I would never have picked up. Then, either to make him feel good about his thoughtfulness, or just because it is the nearest book, one day I will pick up a book he has chosen. Inevitably, it will be a part of a trilogy, or it will be a book that was an ARC and is lacking essential maps, or some silliness as that. Either way I'm hooked and sunk all at once.

The latest trap:

I could tell, he was proud of himself. He knows I enjoy reading YA to preview books for my children, make suggestions to our library director, and because some of them have been very good. He also knows that my heart belongs to the classics. "This is a young-adult book, written in a Dickensian style, it says on the jacket," he tells me with a grin. "I thought you might like it."

I look at it and shrug, thinking to myself, "Probably not Dickensian in style. Probably not something I want to read, it is about a print shop!" But then he looked crestfallen. I had disappointed him. I added the book to my bag, but first managed to read Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Darkside by Beth Fantaskey, and Fang by James Patterson. Then I thought I'd better tackle the book hubbins brought home.

Well, it has some aspects that remind me of Dickens. The feeling of the desperation of London at that time; Dickens was really good at weighing his readers down with the bleakness of it. Bajoria accomplishes that same sense of understanding of the filth of London both figuratively and literally, and the injustice served upon the children who were poor or orphaned. We follow the story of Mog, a 12-year-old printer's apprentice, which is commonly known as a printer's devil.

Mog is a bit too curious and gets tangled up in an intrigue of drugs, criminals, and the London subculture that lurks in the shadows and most would like to ignore. There are many twists and turns which required me to go back and re-read passages to discover a clue I had overlooked or to reacquaint with a character I had dismissed. This story held me captivated. The bravery of Mog never ceased to impress me.

I am sick today, too sick to go into work, and ended up in bed most of the day. When I was not sleeping, I was reading this book. I got to the end...and...was...left...hanging. Darn. He did it to me again. It is part one of a trilogy. I ordered the next book from ILL and now I wait. I recommend reading this one, but having book two waiting before you are done, you will want to pick it up and keep going. I know I wanted to.

It's Monday, what are you reading?


I was intrigued enough that I mentioned the book to the librarian who does the purchasing. I looked it up in the catalog to find it is categorized both as J-Fic and as YA within our system. I would maintain the subject matter of working children, child abuse, drugs, murder, and intrigue put this solidly within the YA, and I would go out on a limb and say it could hold its own categorized as Adult Fic.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Random Thoughts

I am exhausted. Completely wiped out. We have had sick children in the house since the week of July 12th. That is the downside of a large family. They can never get sick all at once, they go down one or two at a time, and you have some form of the illness for weeks. But the last one is finally sick (sounds a little warped to phrase it that way!!) so I am hopeful this bugaboo will become a memory very soon.

Additionally, I worked about 50 hours last week between my two jobs, not counting commuting time, that is extra. Some of those shifts were overnight shifts. I have learned through this experience I am not really cut out to be in the workforce. Not full time. Not out of the house. I do not like it. I'm not a person I like when I have to be out of the home, I miss my children, I'm crabby.

I also drove twice, in the past two weeks to see my daughter, three hours each way, down and back in a day. That is tiring.

Now, I'm not complaining, I am grateful for the income, my husband is unemployed. I feel blessed to have had this opportunity to make extra money. I love visiting my daughter, she is so worth the effort to drive down, and being tired the day after!! I am also glad to have had time with each of my children when they were sick. But, I am tired.

I have been reading, and on some of my overnight shifts I watched movies to stay awake, so I have lots to talk about, if my energy level picks up. I believe my immune system thinks it may want to succumb to the illness of my children, just so I will stop for a day or two, but that is not an option. So my immune system and I are at odds this past week. Not sick, but not 100% either.

If you've wondered where I've been, not on FB, not visiting blogs, not on the web anywhere, I'm just tired these past two weeks.

The rest of this week I will be working (through Sunday). I will be up late tonight polishing a presentation for some local tweens (my daughter, Tiger, being one if she is well enough) about podcasting. The library director, and myself, are doing the presentation, and I feel like we are not as prepared as we ought to be. Again, exhaustion taking over my preparations.

I do have some books to talk about, and some films as well. I also have an announcement to make in the near future (how's that for a teaser). Hint: It is blog-related, and I'm pretty excited about it!!

There is one book I haven't looked at in a while, but would like to mention because one of my blog friends was talking about nutrition in her preschooler. I think I would be less exhausted if I took this book out again, I'm guessing I need to sneak a few more nutrients into my own diet! Thank you to Katherine for bringing this book to my mind today, time to open it up again!

You can buy it here, on Amazon, pretty inexpensively. I love this book. I used it when my children were preschoolers, and I think I need to pull it out again!! This book recommends family-friendly recipes, packed with sneaky nutrition tips. One that I remember was how to increase vitamin A using milkshakes, pumpkin milkshakes. That one became a favorite in our household, and The Oldest, who is a vegetarian, still uses smoothies and milkshakes to make up some nutrients.

Amazon.com Review:

Using the many tricks up her sleeve, nutritionist Evelyn Tribole can get just
about anyone to eat healthy. Hate the thought of tofu? Try her Chocolate Marble
Cheesecake, with tofu replacing some of the cream cheese. Her daughter did, and
now she's a convert. Don't want to add fiber because it sounds so bland? Try her
Dark Fudge Brownies, with puréed black beans giving each brownie as much fiber
as a slice of whole wheat bread.
With more than 100 recipes that sneak
fiber, calcium, and other nutrients into the diet, Stealth Health can turn even
the most devoted junk food junkie into a health nut. For "vegetable haters"
there's Chicken Chile Verde, which features finely chopped spinach masquerading
as green chilis. For "fruit skimpers," try the Purple Cow sMOOthie with mixed
berries and nonfat frozen yogurt. And if you're a "milk miser," drink up your
calcium in the delicious form of Home Express Coffee Latte. (Tribole came up
with these and other labels to describe nutritional problem areas, and you can
take her diagnostic quiz to find out which one fits you.)

Each of the
book's eight chapters features recipes, nutritional information, and charts
showing five ways to "sneak" healthy foods into meals. And if you still need
more convincing, Tribole weaves in the scientific evidence for the role of
nutritious foods in fighting everything from cancer to osteoporosis to heart
disease. Tribole, who has celebrity clients and has appeared on Good Morning
America, says the way to get finicky children to eat healthy is to whip up one
of her recipes without telling them the ingredients. "This approach works well
with adults, too," she writes. "The basis of Stealth Health cooking is tasting
is believing."