family photo album

Grace was sitting pretty in a sunbeam when she did her homework the other day. 

She and her friend Jenna are having lots of fun pretending to be John Watson and Sherlock Holmes.  They have written 44 long letters back and forth as S. and J.  Grace keeps them all in a binder.  They have also both learned Morse code as part of the fun.  Someday I will have to sneak a peek and share here what they are imagining.  IF Grace will let me.


In the busy kitchen, Ethan made homemade waffles after school on Monday.  I got to eat one and it was delicious.


And later on that same day, Jacob made an authentic Norwegian potato and meatball soup, from scratch.  It was for a school project having to do with family heritage.  Jacob’s great great Grandfather came from Norway in the 1920’s and landed on Ellis Island.  He was a teen when he came to America, and paid his way on the ship by working as part of the crew. Jacob made the soup and called his Grandma to get the information about his family tree.  The next morning, he carried the whole pot to school to add to the other dishes that his classmates made.  Jacob was so proud of this soup and wants to make it again sometime. 


Poor E.  I was supposed to purchase a Boston Cream Pie for his birthday, but the bakery didn’t have any that day.  I had to get cake instead.  However, I did get him an eclair for his after school snack, which sort of made up for it.


I love all the hands in this picture.  Jacob lit the candles for his brother’s cakes.  One cake was chocolate and the other was vanilla.  They were good, but the frosting was made with shortening and I prefer butter. 



He was determined to blow out all the candles in one breath, and he did.  His brother David is also in the picture…..they are five years apart but have been such pals lately.  Last night they worked together on Origami.  This is what they made:

It’s Origami Yoda.  I can’t tell you all the little white papers I’ve been picking up, and half folded Yodas that were ultimately cast aside.  David in particular is very very “in” to folding, any time, any place.  It’s the cutest thing.

All because of This Book.



Last night’s dinner was a crock pot ham and a big tossed salad.  For the ham, I put a cup of brown sugar in the crock pot, then the ham.  I usually have to trim the top off the ham so the cover will fit.  Then, I pat on another cup of sugar and put it on low setting all day long.  It ends up perfectly cooked in a pot of salty/sugary juice that tastes so good with the meat.  It’s one of Grace’s favorite meals.

I decided to serve it with just the salad and I think we needed the freshness because we all had seconds and Ethan had a fifth helping.  Sarah, after dinner, kept running with her little feet to grab another lettuce leaf out of the bowl to nibble.  She was calling it “gum”…”I gotta go get another gum”.


Sarah got new jammies this week…she LOVES them and never wants to take them off.  She adores matching her Bitty Baby.


We had a dusting of snow fall all morning long.  Yes, it’s pretty but I am cold and I want to be warm. 



Seth woke up with an awful cough.  As he sat on my lap this morning he made all kinds of strange coughing sounds, amusing himself and alarming his family.

I said, “Don’t worry, Seth, you’ll feel better.  I’ll put some Vicks on your chest.”

He jumped up and stared and said, “What’s Fix?”


Caleb and David the happy Yoda-folder running to the bus this morning…(7:30 am)


This weekend I took the time to divide two plants that my Mom had given me a few years ago.  I was able to divide them into thirds, I once had two and now have six!  One is Aloe, and the other is a Snake plant.  I grouped them up to take a picture and then dispersed them around the house.


One of our favorites:  The Chicken Book by Garth Williams. 


I finished reading Anna Karenina, and am now about to embark on War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy.  I’m anticipating it like I would a feast.

But first I have to finish Jane Eyre.





21 thoughts on “family photo album

  1. There are always such interesting things happening at your house. That ham recipe sounds easy and yummy. Do you boil the ham first to get some of the salt out of it?

  2. I have ham sitting in my fridge waiting for something to happen!! And now you’ve inspired me!I love hearing the stories about your older kids. They sound like caring young adults. And that davie of yours…. He’s quite entertaining!:)

  3. I just read this out loud to David. We are sitting in the Doctor’s office getting an IV. It was so delightful to hear about the family and what you are doing. He laughed to hear about Grace and her friend and Sherlock Homes. He like’s Sherlock too. He got interested in an old copy of one of the stories that I have from my Grandparents house. I recently bought him a big volume at the library book store.

  4. @fourfiftythree – My mom told me it was a snake plant and I googled it just to make sure.  When I did, I learned it was also called Mother in law’s tongue!  That’s.just.sad.  LOL  @ABAHM – Glad you were both amused!  Grace is reading the stories, too.  I’m glad she found a girlfriend who could relate to it all….with lots of writing, texting, and giggling, too.  (((hugs)) to you both!   

  5. You are certainly tackling the classics aren’t you? I’ve wanted to embark on War and Peace but am not sure I have the fortitude…is it bland and overwhelming?I love that Grace does her work in the sunshine…rays of light cause me to linger as well.And the ham looks and sounds absolutely perfect!

  6. Love the cover of your copy of War and Peace. I enjoyed reading it—more than Anna Karenina, but it did require some effort to keep all of the characters straight. Let me know what you think of it.

  7. @celebratinglifeandmotherhood –  I just fill a big pot with water, plop the ham in and boil it for about 15 minutes. Then I change the water and boil it another 15. If it is a large ham, you may want to do 20/20. It doesn’t hurt the ham or make it less tender, but it does get rid of a lot of the salt. I also microwave pepperoni between paper towels to get rid of some of the fat before I make a pizza! I am just weird!

  8. I am a 77 year old (as of yesterday) 😉 and here I sit and read a delightful young mother blog about Ham- brown sugar and boys cooking and- snow and- PJ – and books–and plants and -BD cake candles- and folded paper-and -tracks in snow- and and what did I miss? Good Job Shanda Merle

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