Archive for the ‘Family life’ Category

The Uniforms Arrived!

September 25, 2013

 

This morning the UPS man pulled up with boxes for Kevin and James. They have arrived a day early!

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And, what better thing to do when the uniforms arrive than to make hard tack?

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When I saw the boys in uniform, it gave me just  little glimpse of what those mothers in the 1860s must have felt.   I have read accounts, but seeing them in uniform, even if just to reenact, stirs up the emotions.  How did they get this big?  So young, yet so much more grown up than the last time I looked.  Would they ever see their sons again?  Hear from them?  Communication was nowhere near what it is today.  I am all too grateful that they are not going off to march in battle, but going to help people learn history.

We’re suppose to be going to a skirmish on Friday, living history on Saturday, and a marker dedication on Sunday after Mass.  Busy, busy!  Now, if only I could spend the next 2 days sewing, I might be able to get something done for the girls. If you have sky blue, gray, or butternut wool that you’re not using, please pass  it on so we can get John outfitted!  Thanks for reading!

 

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Forrest Homecoming 2013

September 20, 2013

One of the interesting things we found out about at Elm Springs was the homecoming at the Nathan Bedford Forrest boyhood home.

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Being members of the Children of the Confederacy, we volunteered. The three older boys and MaryEllen went to work. We help set up a bit. The kids manned the place where drinks and snacks were being sold, yet the still managed to get around, learn, and have fun. (As a matter of fact, during the end of the school year interview, this event was listed as a favorite field trip.) I did what I could, helping to keep the bathrooms tidy and supplied. On this day we also met (finally) the group that we will be reenacting with!!! (Also, a note about Nathan Bedford Forrest… if you think he started the KKK, you need to learn your history! N.B. Forrest was a hero who risked his life and wealth fighting for what he believed was right. And I am not taking about slavery here! Please, I beg you, go to original sources and find out the truth for yourself!!! OK, end of rant!)

There were speakers, musicians, games, vendors, and demonstrations to keep visitors busy all day, and the weather was lovely!

forest homecoming 2013 023 John and James (“the Army guy”) helping to set up”

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forest homecoming 2013 026 On the back porch where drinks and snacks were sold

forest homecoming 2013 027 cannon demonstrations

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forest homecoming 2013 052 Working hard or hardly working?

forest homecoming 2013 053 forest homecoming 2013 054 forest homecoming 2013 056 Talks and demonstrations on fashion of the time period a Confederate Women, featuring Emma Samsom

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forest homecoming 2013 058Vincent with a Nathan Bedford Forrest reenactor

forest homecoming 2013 063 MaryEllen in a hat that she just loved

In the museum room of the house…

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After the homecoming…

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James Turned 13!!

September 19, 2013

Announcement: We now have THREE teenagers in the house!

Honestly, most of the time it is rather enjoyable.

We made a cake for James’s birthday and he insisted on putting the candles on the cake. (I’m sorry for the poor quality pictures!)

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Charlotte Turns 8!

September 19, 2013

We celebrated Charlotte’s 8th birthday this year. We took Aunt Sue to the Shrine of the Most Blessed Sacrament and to the Ave Maria Grotto. We met up with other friends of ours that day as well. It was a beautiful day and everyone enjoyed themselves.

First here are some pictures of Charlotte opening a present from Aunt Mary Lou and Uncle Al.  (Thank you so much!!!)

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That is all the pictures I took. Luckily Kevin took a few from the Shrine…

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Edited to add that I found some pictures from the day that I took!!!  Here they are…

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A Dream Come True

September 18, 2013

While living in the Shenandoah Valley we had no shortage of battle fields to visit. We would spend days on end at Manassas, New Market, and others learning about that time period in history. There were many re-enactments and living history events to attend and we all wanted to be re-enactors. Then we moved to Tennessee. Virginia claims the record number of War Between the States battles. While Tennessee is second in line, there are not nearly as many events to attend, at least that we found out about. We searched and searched. Finally on a visit to Elm Springs, the headquarters of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, we got connected. There is a local group who does a lot of living history.

Today Kevin and James took some of their money they have been saving for years and ordered uniform pieces. We did a lot of measuring and research. The boys are ordering from Crescent City Sutlers. Today they both learned about money orders and the difference between them and checks. They learned about making decisions (blue or gray, etc) and filling in order forms. We learned that Kevin grew just under a half of inch since July and James grew a little more than a half of inch since then.

I’ll be trying to sew something up for the girls. I don’t know what we’ll do about John yet. We’ll figure out something. It should be really fun and the group that we are with are very family oriented which is just perfect for us. Look for some up coming pictures.

Picture Book Questions

May 16, 2013

James and Kevin were looking at a picture book today. It is called “Always Room for One More” or something like that. Here’s the conversation…

Kevin: Is this book Irish or something?

James: Why do you ask? Does it mention Ale?

Where do they come up with this stuff?

Here is the link to the book (no, I’m not an Amazon affiliate, athough maybe I should be.)

Heard in the Car Today

May 3, 2013

We had been in the car a little while and when we were almost home, this was heard:

Child #1 – “I reserve our bathroom.”

Child #2 – “I reserve Mom’s Bathroom.”

Child #3 (male) -“I reserve the tree in the front yard.”

Heard at the Art Museum Today…

April 26, 2013

We were there to see Dutch Masters. James looks at a Rembrandt painting of Jesus’ face and says to me, “I like the frame better than the painting.”

Edited to add what my friend who went with me heard (she’s got the better memory):

“I’m hungry.
Can I go to the next room.
Look at that drunk guy.
I’m thirsty.
Can you hold me.
Where are the statues?
That guy has a big honker (oh wait, that was YOU! LOL!).
look at the cute dogs.
Look at the depth perception in that painting.
Here goes mom talking about depth perception again.
Look at the lighting on that – it’s beautiful.
There’s a ship.
Can we go to the children’s playroom yet.
Why do you think I would be good at being the drunk in that painting – I’m offended.”

Four Years Old, She Is!

April 24, 2013

One of the more common of Mom’s annoyed remarks are, “Am I talking to a wall?” or “Talking to you is like talking to a wall.” So, tonight I was making one of those remarks and our little 4-year-old girl says, “What wall is that, Mom?”

Thrift Shop Fun!

April 24, 2013

A couple of days a month we go into the city for “Enrichment” days. The girls have a Little Flowers group, the boys have a boys club called “Brothers in Christ” and there is even a little 4-year-old club. It is also our library day, where the selection is significantly bigger than our little country libraries. (However, I forgot my library list, but I digress!)

We decided to go in early so we could do some thrift shopping. We stopped at this one shop that we had not been to in a couple of years. Their prices did go up, but who’s hasn’t? My big find there was a little tiny crock pot that I have been wanting for years. I hadn’t bought one because none could be found that did not have a plastic lid. Well, the one yesterday had a glass lid and looked as if it had never been used. We like to cook overnight oat groats and this pot is the perfect size, so we’ve already used it! It was brand new and the plastic plug protector had never been removed. What a find.

We ended up going thrifting both before and after clubs. Here are some other fun finds. First of all some books…

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And some hats….

thrift find 012For the ladies.

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thrift 2 003 thrift 2 004 Charlotte’s hat, but Vincent just had to get into the pictures.  He’s a cutey!

A couple of patterns…

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thrift find 001 (Yes that price tag says 49 cents!!!)

There is a Spring Beatrix Potter unit study.  I printed the whole thing out years ago and come across it from time to time.   This  year I remembered about it at the right time of year.  We just started it this week and it has me keeping my eyes open for all things Beatrix Potter.  Yesterday at two different stores, I found these:

thrift find 009 They are melmac, perfect for our tile floors and Veronica loves them already.

The boys love to go to look for jerseys and military-type things.  Here’s some of their finds…

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thrift 2 005 thrift 2 006 This one is the prized one because it is some kind of rare alternate Titans jersey, of Vince Young.  It is the same as my Fred Smoot jersey (that you can see in this post), about which we were told by a reliable source that it was as close as you can get to the real thing.  The numbers are sewn on, etc…

The boys had about 10 jerseys in the cart at one store so that they could get one for everyone on their football teams when they play again at church or wherever, but I put my foot down on that.  But, it shows the generous spirit of my boys.  That is nice.

Oh yes, one day I’m gong to put a puppet post togher.  James and Kevin have been making puppets and are even sometimes part of their friends’ show “Buffle and Friends.”  So, James and Kevin are always on the lookout for good puppet material.  Yesterday James found some black and Kevin found some green.   This morning, Kevin made his new puppet which he calls “Spinky,” so he tells me.

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John has been looking for a few years for a good desk.  He traded his away to his sisters one time (and I think regretted it ever since.)  He found one for a reasonable price yesterday and they were kind enough to take 10% off.  He’s already got it up and running this morning….

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The boys like 80s rock and were pleased to find a Joshua Tree CD.

For our gaming pleasure…

thrift find 015 Lord of the Rings Trivial Pursuit, complete with gold ring.

Last, but certainly not least, was our last find of the day.  I nearly fell over when the girls brought it to me smiling, and I asked in a doubtful voice, “How much do they want for it?”  “$2.99,” MaryEllen said.  I exclaimed, “Put it in the basket!”

thrift find 010 Yes, what you see here is a Pleasant Company American Girl retired Kirsten Doll in her original dress and apron.  She is missing a pinky on one of her hands and her toe and finger nails have been painted, but not too messy.  Her hair is a little dry at the ends, but she is in perfect playing condition!  We were quite pleased to find the doll.

So there you have it.  There were a few other finds, like some sewing material for Mom and a postcard of Renoir’s painting of a girl with a watering can.  We had an enjoyable day out that ended with us going to see the last 2 innings of a friend’s baseball game and visiting with them for a little while.