7 quick takes vol: 33

linking up with kelly for some very quick quick takes. 


We had a really beautiful Easter. Alex and I were able to sing with our church's choir for the Triduum. Those three days are the most beautiful liturgies and I was so grateful to be able to go - without my kids - much less sing  with the choir. I look forward to taking the little nippers to the Triduum when they are older, but for now it works well for them to be at home, with the babysitter, sleeping in their beds. 

But they sure did look cute in their Easter outfits the next morning! I was telling Alex that it is so much easier to love our kids when they look really cute. 

Of course I was joking.


Also, why did none of the four adults helping to capture a family photo notice that Alex had his sweatshirt on?!?!  


I had a lot of fun with Easter baskets this year, now that our kids are old enough to understand what to do with them. We did Easter baskets and an egg hunt for them, and had a good laugh "hiding" eggs around the house. Even with the obvious spots we still had to point a few out. 

I used Haley's book recommendations for some of their Easter basket gifts. They also each got a Sarah's Silk, something I have been eyeing for a while. Trixie got some baby dolls. These were her first dolls and she was really excited about them. 


Alex just finished his ER rotation. Schedule wise it was actually pretty good! I'm really thankful because ER could have been any time of the day or night.

Up until this rotation Alex has only been in clinical settings so the dress code has been business attire. ER was the first rotation he's had where he wore scrubs every day. I did not realize how much his work clothes contribute to our laundry until I was no longer washing them. It was great! But now he'll be back to business attire on Monday. Just about every shirt he owns needs to be ironed so that's what I'll be doing Sunday night.

And in case your wondering, Alex is very capable about ironing his own clothes, but I get a little type A about the way things are ironed and would just prefer to do it myself.


Johnny is having problems with fluid retention in his ears again. He can't hear out of his left ear at all (even with hearing aids) and it seems like his right ear might be starting to get bad again. We've got surgery for new ear tubes scheduled for May 11, so we're really hoping it doesn't get much worse between now and then.

In the mean time, if it sounds like I'm shouting all the time I'm really just speaking very loudly for the benefit of my hearing impaired child.


Good news! Good news! Good news! The 2017-2018 Blessed is She Liturgical Planner is available for pre-sale NOW!!! Y'all know how much I love my BIS planner, even though I had been a staunch Moleskine user before that. I'm so excited about this next, so much space for notes and planning, such a beautiful cover. And, it helps support a beautiful ministry. Get yours before it's too late! (They will ship in June.)

Also, have you seen the beautiful wall hangings that are in the Blessed is She Shop?


This weekend I had my first piano lesson in almost 5 years. I was a piano major in college, and after graduation I took lessons until I became pregnant with Johnny, so I've had lots of lessons in the past. I've also been teaching piano for the past 10 years, so I'm very used to being in lessons as the teacher. But being the student again was terrifying!! I can tell the challenge is going to be really good for me, and I'm excited to learn some new music. 


If I may circle back to Easter for a moment. I had found this darling dress on Amazon that I got for Trixie to wear. But when I tried it on her I couldn't get it over her head. This is not the first time this has happened, poor girl. Her head size is off the charts. Thankfully there are free returns. But I realized that Amazon has TONS of cute kids clothes! Like this little number. If you start browsing, don't say I didn't warn you.


disclaimer: amazon and blessed is she links are affiliate. when you follow the link and make a purchase I get a small percentage of the sale at no additional cost to you. thanks for supporting this blog! 

Feast and Flu

We had a pretty good Holy Week, despite Alex having two giant tests he needed to study for, and despite dragging kids to all of the Triduum, and despite me taking on too much Easter baking, and despite skipping nap to go to two family gatherings. It was still Easter and it was still good. 

On Holy Thursday the kids waited in line for confession with me for over an hour. I don't really mind bringing kids to confession except for the pity it elicits from the other people in line with me. I had people helping me carry my purse, giving Johnny holy cards and other trinkets to play with, offering to hold the baby while I went into the confessional (yikes!), I also got bumped up the line a few spots. I do appreciate the help and compassion, but I get self-conscious and it would really just make me feel better if people would act like we don't exist. 

Then we went to Holy Thursday Mass as a family. Alex had planned on singing with the choir for the Triduum, and had been going to practices for the few weeks leading up to Holy Week. But then at the last minute had to back out because of the giant tests he needed to study for. That's what he said anyway. I think he may have actually done it so that I didn't have do church with the babies by myself. And I really appreciate it, because Johnny brought his bad behavior A-game both Thursday and Good Friday. 

Holy Saturday. I spent the ENTIRE day making the petit fours that I would bring to Alex's family's noon-time Easter meal, and started the Tiramisu cake for my family's evening Easter meal. I have no idea what possessed me to take on petit fours. They probably flitted across my Pinterest feed a few weeks ago and imprinted themselves on my subconscious. Whatever the source, I had them on the brain and I knew I would not have rest until I made them. They were very cute, but.....#neveragain. 

Alex did sing with the choir for the vigil.  My dad came over to put Johnny to bed, and I took Trixie to the vigil with me. She was a very good baby and slept most of the time in the sling. My lower back was in agony by the time our 3.5 hour vigil was over, but it was a beautiful liturgy. I love our priests and religious, I love hearing my husband sing, I love all the bells, and I love singing Jesus Christ Is Risen Today with all my might. 

When we got home from the vigil we "hid" Easter eggs for Johnny to find.  Really, we were just placing them around the house hoping that Johnny would notice them the next morning. And he did! We handed him his basket and had to point out the first couple of eggs, but then he caught on and exclaimed "ball!" (which is what he calls them) every time he found one. 

Johnny ate way too much candy, and didn't have much of an appetite the rest of the day. We thought it was all the sweets, but then the next day he was pretty mellow. Tuesday morning he and I, plus my parents and one of my brothers were all struck down with the stomach flu, and my sister followed a day later. It was terrible, I have never been that sick in my life. Alex had to stay home from class because I was not capable of caring for our children and all our regular babysitters were also sick. It took a day and a half for me to feel back to normal. And now I feel like I've been given a second chance at life! I found out today that a few family members on Alex's side got it too, so it looks like we were the source. Sorry family! 

I hope that your Easter was lovely.  I really hope that you don't come down with any stomach bugs because that was just.....horrific. 

Holy Recap!

In case you were wondering how we fared during Holy Week, you can put your mind at rest and feast your eyes on this gem of a recap post, complete with grainy cell phone pictures.

You're welcome!

Alex is super involved with music at our church so between rehearsals and the Triduum he was gone every night last week. I was dreading it, picturing myself wrestling Johnny to sleep each night in place of Alex, who usually does bed time with him. But it actually wasn't so bad. There was only one night he missed bed time, and he was around for dinner most nights too.

I decided to gird my loins (as my friend Nell would say) and take Johnny to the Holy Thursday and Good Friday services at our church.  Holy Thursday went pretty well. Johnny spent most of mass working on holding the hymnal with one hand, the way I have to when I'm holding him on one hip and still trying to sing.

He also made the little girl in the pew in front of us very sad when he whipped out his sippy-cup and ziplock bag of goldfish crackers  I felt deeply guilty of having made mass all the harder for that poor family and instantly began reevaluating my decision to let Johnny have snacks during church. This has been how I have been surviving  mass by myself every week while Alex sings in choir. I know it will have to stop at some point. When is that point? Older, wiser parents? Advice? Please don't judge me too harshly.

Good Friday I tried to fast as much as possible in my pregnant state. No TV. No morning coffee.  No sweets. No instagram. I can't go more than a couple hours between meals/snacks without feeling gravely ill, and even though I was eating regularly I still felt hungry all day. I think it was sympathy hunger for everyone else who was fasting.

Johnny and I went to the Good Friday prayer vigil at the Planned Parenthood near our house. Johnny got to ride a school bus that shuttled us to and fro, and I thought that since he goes bananas with glee every time a school bus drives past our house he would be pretty thrilled to ride on one.  Instead he cried and kept his face buried in my jacket the whole time. We've been going to this event since Johnny was just a tummy baby and it's always deeply moving to me. It's also nice to have an activity to do that still feels Good Friday appropriate.

We did a little grocery shopping, went to stations of the cross at 3:00, ate tuna cheese melts for dinner (yum!!) and killed time waiting for church. My sister came with us for the Good Friday service, and I don't know if it was having a fun family member with us, or the recent memory of stations where he was permitted to walk around the church, but Johnny was terrible that night.  The worst he was been in church ever. For the first time ever he noticed Alex cantoring on the altar, even though Alex has been doing this all Johnny's existence. H kept shouting "papa?" in his high pitched screech that rebounded so nicely off the vaulted ceilings. Nothing could induce him to quietude, so he and I spend most of the service in the narthex.

For the first time since Alex and I have been dating he did not have to work the day before Easter.  In the bakery business the day before any major holiday is a really big day, getting up at 3:00 am and working 12 hours straight. But since Alex is on his way out of the bakery business and on his way to being a full time student many of his duties are being passed on to other people and he didn't need to go in! Alleluia! So we spent the day baking Easter goodies, including this cake, and getting some chores done.

My parents so nicely agreed to come over to watch Johnny so that I could go to the Eater Vigil and hear my husband sing the Exultet. Johnny is really hard at bed time  It takes me an hour to get him to sleep and it usually takes Alex a half hour. I wasn't sure that he would go to sleep for my parents at all and was bracing myself for an over stimulated, over tired toddler to deal with when we got home. But he was sound asleep and it turns our it only took my dad 10 minutes to put him to bed! (He's a grandpa's boy.) So now the questions remains, do we try a night away without him? I think yes.

Since we both went to the Vigil and I got all my baking done on Saturday we spent Easter morning in our PJs eating cinnamon rolls and bacon. It was the most relaxing morning we've had in a long time. I even painted my toenails. Johnny took a great nap, Then we headed over the my parents house where we feasted ourselves on ham and cheesy potatoes (a Lutheran thing) and glorified rice (also a Lutheran thing), and of course Jelly Bellies and malted milk eggs!

Congratulations, you made it to the end of this post. I hope your Easter was filled with all the treats you like the best, and don't forget, it's still Easter! So keeping saying Alleluia!


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