Friday, November 30, 2007

What We're Up To

The tree is up...

The Christmas music is playing.

Some are intensely creating;

others are toodling around, being cute;

and still others are lounging about.

And while you won't catch a glimpse of this mama (still in her pajamas ;), just know she's reveling in it all. How's your day been? Hope this finds you well. God bless.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Anticipating Advent

Though Advent doesn't officially begin until Sunday, I have already begun my own celebration of the season with a little euphoria...

I can't explain it, yet my heart feels as if it's bursting with joy and overflowing with the presence of the Holy Spirit. Hallelujah! The past couple of days have truly rocked my little world in awesome ways. Thanks be to God!

And I have been desperately waiting for a time like this for awhile... A time of intimate prayer, feeling as if God is nearer than He has been in a long time (though He is always near, whether I recognize it or not); a time of peace and patience, waiting in the knowledge that God's will is perfect and better than anything I have planned; a time of reflection and introspection, looking within and renewing parts of me that have become dormant and lifeless.

It has been euphoric, I tell you, and the season has yet to begin! :)

This Advent, Gasperini-Ville will be starting some new family traditions. I just received the most adorable children's Advent wreath with velcro candles... I ordered it here and was overjoyed to find it was well-made and user-friendly. Now my young cherubs can participate in the "lighting" of the Advent wreath without a fire hazard. Another Hallelujah!! Considering our latest track record, removing real fire from Gasperini-Ville would be a good thing.

Leaving, of course, the fire of Christ and the warmth of the season in our hearts.
Hope your hearts are equally as blessed in this season of anticipation.
Happy pre-Advent and God bless!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007


*Pottery box made in Mexico, thrown across the floor and broken by T-baby: $5

*Twenty-year-old copper and glass ornament, thrown in a similar fashion and shattered: $7

*Extended time with Gramz and Pappy following Thanksgiving: priceless.

Praising God today for my parents, willing to endure the craziness of little boys in order to allow GG some extra time to study at home. Alone. Without chaos.

May God bless all the grandparents in the world for they are truly priceless.

Monday, November 26, 2007

10 years?

As I mentioned before, this past weekend was my high school class' tenth reunion. What a blast it was! Really. It was so entertaining overall, I thought I'd write a top 10 list to honor the ten years past. Here goes...


10. Hanging crepe paper streamers beforehand may hone one's rusty decorating skills. Are the streamers hanging symmetrically? Do we need more twists? Excellent. :)

9. The trip down memory lane serves to spark a youthful enthusiasm, making you think you have as much energy and motivation as you did 10+ years ago. That's a good thing for this worn-out mama!! :)

8. You're not as fat, as wrinkly, or as out of touch as the other guy. (This is a horrible reason, but I had to include it!) lol. :) You'd never believe some of the changes in people in ten years!

7. Staying out until 2 a.m. every once-in-a-while is good for the soul. Right? Still wondering.

6. Talking to folks from the past is really heartwarmning. It brings one back to her roots, which is always a good thing.

5. You may learn a thing or two from some learned classmates, e.g. our generation (1977-1999) are called "millenials". Who knew?

4. Dancing to Madonna's Immaculate Collection never gets old.

3. Your spouse may surprise you by being such a good sport. So good that he escapes half the night with the other husbands to watch football in the nearby lounge. Fine by me! (Oh, and the Irish won! What could be better?)

2. You'll return home, embrace your children, and praise God that you are well beyond high school.

1. You may find, when all is said and done, that you grew up around really good people, who may not think like you or agree with you, but in the end have really good hearts.

I feel very blessed to have gone to school with the people I did--not a shabby place to end up after a heartwarming tenth reunion, don't you think?

Scath88 and B-mama

Sunday, November 25, 2007

St. Therese, pray for us.

O my God! I offer Thee all my actions of this day for the intentions and for the glory of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I desire to sanctify every beat of my heart, my every thought, my simplest works, by uniting them to Its infinite merits; and I wish to make reparation for my sins by casting them into the furnace of Its Merciful Love. O my God! I ask thee for myself and for those whom I hold dear, the grace to fulfill perfectly Thy Holy Will, to accept for love of Thee the joys and sorrows of this passing life, so that we may one day be united together in Heaven for all Eternity. Amen.
-St. Therese of Lisieux, morning prayer

Remembering today sweet baby Therese, the daughter of a dear friend.
It has been five years since you came into this world, blessed all who knew you, and went off to spend eternity with Christ in heaven.
God bless you, dear little one.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanks be to God today for His presence in our lives, particularly through the Body of Christ he has given us here on earth.
We are reveling today in:

*the invigoration of a bright and early holiday morning; our children are making sure we appreciate the full extent of the day (5am...) :)

*the peace of family (though not really peaceful with 4 young cherubs running around later this afternoon!)

*the warmth of togetherness (though temperatures promise to plummet, bringing snow!) Our hearts will be warm despite!

*the bliss of food favorites like Pennsylvania Dutch Potato Filling (God's gift to potatoes) and my newly discovered rave pumpkin cookies!

*the rekindling of old family tales and arguments around the Thanksgiving table. Every year the "deer story" resurfaces, causing great debate within the family. It's a rather long story, but in short, my sister hilariously claims to have a hit a deer once in high school. We argue that it was my dad who actually did the deed, causing frontal damage to the family Oldsmobile. We go round and round, laugh hysterically, and ultimately question my sister's memory. Good times. :)

*the hope of being reunited with old friends. My high school 10th reunion is this weekend! Should have some interesting stories to share when it's all said and done... :) Thankfully GG will be along for the ride.

*And finally, I'm thankful for YOU... my dear friends via the blogosphere! Thanks for listening!

Blessings to you this Turkey Day! Eat up and be well.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Ipsy Bitsy

As Gasperini-Ville prepares to head nearby for a family-filled Thanksgiving, here's a little serenade to put a smile on your face just in time for the holiday! God bless you today in all your feasting preparation...

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

cash advance

I tried this out after reading about it on another blog--thankfully the outcome wasn't too bad!
Maybe I need to start using words like Pythagorean and anthropomorphic to increase the brainpower output... Yet without coffee and a sufficient night's rest, I think I'll just keep things as they are. ;) Blessings to you.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Wouldn't you know it!

I slammed my finger in one of our kitchen drawers Saturday night while cooking.
No one was around and thank goodness! It hurt SO bad (yeah, that's capitalized and italicized). Really, I had to hum low tones/groans for minutes just to bear with the pain (incidentally this is also a technique for dealing with pain in natural labor; not that I would know--2 epidurals here. :) All night my finger throbbed and I thought at one point that it was broken...

Oh no. No sir. No broken bones. NOR wounds. NOR gashes. NOR practically anything.
What do I have as a result of all my pain and turmoil, you ask?

A bruise. A very small bruise on my fingernail. Are you kidding me? :)

I explained the whole story to GG and I could tell he was feeling very sorry for me until... He saw the pathetically uninjured fingernail-- "Oh, that's it."
Ugh! Madness! :)

I just had to blog about it. lol.
God bless you for listening! Thanks! :)

The pathetic injury with bruise barely visible on the middle finger.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


I'm sitting here, drinking in the warmth of the Lord's Day.

While cold and blustery outside, our little home is quaint and warm and full of love on this Sunday. And to top it off, my Starbucks coffee is sitting to my left, beckoning me to hurry up and finish this post! Ahh... The bliss of a cozy November Sunday. Hope you're enjoying yours too!

Our weekend was marked with some "lasts" for Gasperini-Ville. It was the last home football game. The last time GG and his 3L buddies would get to stand together, cheering on the Irish. The last singing of the Notre Dame alma mater, Notre Dame Our Mother. (Also probably the last victory for the Irish this season. lol :) It was the last pre-game tailgate for our family, complete with this mama going crazy trying to keep her cherubs happy and in line! It was also the last time we would welcome family for a home game. Papa was here to visit and celebrate gameday with us. Wonderful to have you, dear Papa!

The boys (GG, M, and Papa) had seats three rows up from the field near the Irish endzone --and saw lots of action in the last 1:30 of the half! Can you guess who was the most excited 2-year-old in the whole stadium? Fans nearby asked to have their picture taken with M afterward; they so enjoyed his gametime antics! Too cute. :) And while we are just itching to get to Virginia and begin our post-law school life, I do have to say there are many wonderful things here which we will miss... football among those things at the top of the list.

With that being said, my coffee is again beckoning and the duties of my home are calling. May God breathe peace and warmth to you and yours on this Lord's Day. God bless and hugs.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Welling Up

A mother's heart wells with thanksgiving at such a sight...

I love you, my three wonderful boys! So thankful today.

God Bless You. TGIF!

Thursday, November 15, 2007


Sometimes a mama is running a wee bit behind in her morning to-do's. (Okay, always!)

Sometimes the mama has procrastinated and pays the price as she dashes to and fro.

Sometimes the mama has to overlook her sweet, young cherub in order to get everything accomplished before heading out to a friend's baby shower.

Sometimes that same young cherub fights back and steals her keys.

Sometimes the mama loads up the car, cherub, and food and then can't (for the life of her) find said keys.

Sometimes the mama has to relinquish the search and just take the extra set (exasperating!)

Sometimes the mama has to crawl around later on her hands and knees to see things from the cherub's perspective, hoping to find the missing keys.

Sometimes the mama just needs to stop and pay more attention to everything going on her sweet cherub's life and things seem to work better that way.

Sometimes, when all is said and done, the mama finally finds her keys hidden in the closet.

And thankfully, God's grace is sufficient ALL the time (and this mama now has her keys! Hallelujah!)
Aren't we the luckiest?
God bless you this Thursday!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

To and Fro

We've had quite the busy morning here in Gasperini-Ville.
Our day started with a bright and sunny 6:45am wake-up by T-baby. Soon, the whole family was moving (GG was already downstairs studying--what a good boy!) and we were off on our Tuesday...

After dropping GG and M at their respective schools (on the same campus, thankfully!), T-baby and I headed to the doctor's for his 15mos. check-up. What a good boy he was! He currently ranks in the 90th percentile for height, ~25th for weight, and 40th for head size! ! Our little boy's head has finally started catching up and he's quite the string bean despite his hefty appetite. The doc was pleased and offered some temporary relief for T-babe's everpresent eczema. He said new research shows bathing every day with soap really helps the condition by removing as much staff bacteria present on the skin, which can later cause the allergic reaction. As long as we get lotion on him within 5min. of his bath, we're golden! I found this extremely encouraging. My thoughts were, the dryer the skin, the less one should bathe. Look what I knew! T received two shots in addition to the physicial exam and off we went.

Our next stop was out at my friend, Carol's, apartment complex, where she and I have agreed to meet to do some ab and weight work! T-babe had fun walking around and playing with the basketballs... Meanwhile, Carol and I busted our guts with every kind of sit-up, calisthenic, and lifting exercise. It was awesome! I know I'll be sore tomorrow, but it'll be worth it. :)

T-baby and I dashed out of there to make a "quick" stop to the grocery store on our way to pick up M from preschool. I don't know why I ever dream of anything at the grocery store being at all expedient or quick! We found our goods, had to dash back to the car to get my wallet(!), and ended up in the UScan aisle all ready to go. Then the scanner broke and I had to enter everything in by the UPC code! Ugh, when technology fails... Really, we are so dependent, but when QUICK becomes the expectation, anything less is just SO SLOW! Off we ran to our car to head to preschool, running very late.

And thankfully, we arrived right on the money to a bright-eyed, cheeky M, who greeted us with sweet hugs and smiles. What a little blessing. He just loves his time at school, making this mama bubble over with happiness. Today his name was drawn to take home the class song book. Guess we'll be doing a little singing around here in the next couple of days! :) The only tough part is they don't provide the melodies, but encourage the kids to teach the songs to their parents. Oh boy! :)

With one final dash home, we've eaten, read stories, and the kiddos are a'snoozin'. Hallelujah.

In the meantime, I've baked a batch of the best pumpkin cookies on the planet! Our house smells incredible. :) Plan to work these into your holiday cooking plan, they are DIVINE and God-breathed! :)
God Bless you today! Big November hugs.

Amazing Pumpkin Cookies
1 C. cooking oil
1 and 2/3 C. granulated sugar
1 16oz. can pumpkin
Beat these together until light and fluffy.

2C. flour
2t. baking powder
2t. cinnamon
1t. salt
1t. baking soda
Stir dry mixture together and then combine with pumpkin mixture.
Bake for 350F for 12-15min. on an ungreased cookie sheet.

When cool, mix the following and frost:
1 3oz. pkg. cream cheese, soft
1/2C. butter, soft
1t. vanilla
2C. (or more) powdered sugar

Sunday, November 11, 2007

A Dream Come True

Once upon a time, there was a little boy who loved football. He was especially in love with the Notre Dame Irish and loved to watch them play every game.

Each Saturday he would faithfully don his jersey and run around the house yelling "hike" and "touchdown", while dreaming of wearing the blue and gold someday as a player. He would watch the team every week on TV and mimic their every move. He would ride past campus yelling "golden dome" and "football game" in the spirit of Notre Dame and it's great football tradition. He was a true fan.

Then one Saturday, his loving daddy said, "Hey buddy, you're becoming such a big boy. I think it's about time you went to see a game." What glory! What bliss! The little boy was overwhelmed with excitement in anticipation of the game... He reveled in the pre-game tailgate, the sight of the Goodyear blimp, and the walk through campus (on his daddy's shoulders) toward his shining moment.

And when he and his daddy arrived at the BIG stadium, saw all the other fans screaming loudly, and heard the (really) loud fighter jets fly overhead, the little boy surveyed the scene and said,

"No Daddy. No more football game."

lol. :)

[What a sweetie! :) Thankfully, M's outlook improved once the Irish entered the field and he had a great time (even though the team was rather pathetic!) He made it to halftime before succombing to the desire for a nap... How much we love our little Irish-loving boy! Happy first game in person, buddy!]

Friday, November 9, 2007

G-Ville's Latest Loves

While I hate to go commercial on all of you, I just have to share about the latest and greatest products we've loved in Gasperini-Ville...

For all the busy moms out there: want to feed your children wholesome veggies? Don't have time to wash, cut, and steam? Look no further than Birdseye Steamfresh Vegetables. These pups are AMAZING! Really. M and T gobble up everything, even the waterchestnuts and pea pods (whose kids are these?) :) All of the vegetables are fresh, clean, and nicely steamed; and they take less than 5 minutes to whip up in the microwave. You don't even have to take them out of the bag to cook them. It's that easy! They have bailed me out in a pinch many a time. Oh, and did I mention that they have NO additional ingredients--only the vegetables? Yes! They went on sale last week and I bought a ton of them--our freezer is packed, we love them so!

For those of you who live in an arctic winter wonderland (or something close to it), you'll enjoy the benefits of Frost King Window Insulation to keep your house warmer this winter season. While I can't vouch for lower heating bills (though I hear there is a big difference; this is our first year doing it!), I can say that this was an extremely easy, user-friendly product. I tackled the living room windows today by myself, including a really large one at the front of our house. So simple! Any wrinkles in the plastic were blown away with our hair dryer--the shrink wrap sealed the deal and made me look like a pro! (Shrink wrap is so cool!) I just loved using this product and hope it pays off with a few extra pennies in our pockets this winter...

That's all from this side of Gasperini-Ville!
Any additional products you've been enjoying? Please share!
May God bless your Friday!

Thursday, November 8, 2007


I was venting (more like whining :) to GG last night about the frustrations of motherhood, particularly the itsy bitsy annoyances of my past day with the kids. My biggest point in the whole discussion was my exasperation about the lack of feedback there is for mothers. My whole life I've grown up with some sort of measure of how I'm doing--report cards in school, work evaluations in the classroom, etc. I like doing things well (who doesn't?) and want to know if I'm getting there.

"What am I doing right?" and "What could I be doing differently to improve?"--just two questions I would BEG of my children (or someone) to answer! I need the Supernanny to come to my home and analyze my mothering!! :) lol. Really, though, how great it would be to have some sort of feedback!

And then it hit me, amidst the questions and wondering, confusion and frustration, my cherubs DO offer feedback. They let me know what's good and effective, what's loving and nurturing...

They smile. They hug. They giggle.
And that's about the best feedback a mother could ask for. :)

Thank you, Lord, for the precious ways my children say "good job, Mom" in our day-to-day.
God bless you on this Thursday.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Forget Something?

You mean, you're supposed to remove clothes before entering a bath? Oops! :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Three Cheers!

Ahem... Ladies and gentlemen, announcing the newest member of the "I Can Do All Things on the Potty Club": MWG!! Our little M came, saw the lollipop rewards, and conquered! We're going on 3 days-in-a-row of #2 on the potty! Yahoo!

(Like you needed all that info, lol, but we're so PROUD!!)

Today also marked the first day of potty success at school. M's teachers were thrilled.
Here's a glimpse of the lollipop man, showing off his treasure. God bless!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Beyond Medicine

It would seem appropriate here for God's plan to prevail. Hallelujah, little Gabriel!

Working for the Good

Last week a friend and I discussed how beautiful it is when a family is blessed with a child with special needs. The whole family always seems to be humbled by the miracle of the person; the siblings particularly sensitive to giving outside of themselves and loving despite appearances.

My father's family was aptly blessed by the life of my Aunt Pam or "Pammy". She was born with a severe case of spina bifida and the doctors thought best to let her life pass. You see, Pam was a twin, her brother Steven born perfect and whole. They were the last children in a family of five kids, my dad the oldest; and from the docs' medical perspectives, it would have been easier to avoid the myriad of problems that would result by keeping Pam alive. Praise God for the nurse who continued to feed her... and my dad's mother, my nana, who fought relentlessly for the life of her daughter! Watching their little sister fight for life, fight to walk, fight to use the bathroom, fight to drive a car, fight to live a normal life, and ultimately, fight a battle with cirrosis (due to medication) that took her life at age 39, my dad and his siblings were humbled, changed forever by Pam. They grew to be kind, patient, gentle adults. I believe it is no coincidence that my dad is one of the kindest, gentlest human beings I know. He knew God's grace through Pam... What a blessing.

And so yesterday in church, while sitting and meditating on the Mass, I couldn't help but look over and see a family with four children, the youngest in a wheelchair. And all I could think about was my little Jude. Why God? Why did you have to take him? I would have loved any child, even one with special needs. Why? I tried desperately to wipe away the questioning, along with the tears, knowing full well that God had already answered my thoughts. It was not meant to be. It just wasn't.

A friend reminded me today of the passage from Romans 8:28-- "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." She reminded me that though the situation may not be good, that God has promised to use it for the good. Yes.

And in the meantime I shed tears for Pam and Jude and another friend today who lost her baby at close to 20 weeks.
God's working for the good,
God's working for the good...

There's another piece of my heart today. Thanks, as always, for listening.
Hugs and God Bless.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Happy Fans

Though the outcome was a sad one, the fans were a happy sort.
Thanks to Gramz and Pappy for allowing GG and I a fun, football afternoon... 3 OT's and all.

Friday, November 2, 2007

The Perfect Dance Partner

"Have you ever thought that God might be changing your dance?
While in the past you were doing the fox trot, perhaps he wants you to move to a waltz.
For it's God who sets the dance and we are to follow, whatever dance He asks of us..."

-the priest who heard my confession today, in response to my question regarding prayer and feeling a greater presence of the Holy Spirit in my prayer life.

I was struck by the simple beauty of his response. God dances with me in prayer? How breathtaking the thought!

Our Friday Date

Taking time today to appreciate the little blessings...

*for a sweet time with my cherubs over coffee and bagels this morning at Panera. We've been enjoying these little "dates" every Friday morning. As a mama, I am able to sit back, drink coffee, and rejoice in my children. What a blessing!

*for M and T's polite munching and sipping, while sitting well-behaved in their highchairs. There is a God! :)

*for their smiling at the sweet strangers we meet--often a few grandparent-types, who stop by, smile, and adore my wee ones. Love it!

*for meeting up with our friend "Mr. Don", who we met at Panera a while back and continue to run into. He is the sweetest old man, a little rough around the edges, with a great grey beard. Today I cherished the opportunity to exchange with him thoughts on faith. Good things.

*for watching M talk languidly with a Panera worker, who had no clue what he was saying, but smiled anyway. LOVE those kind of people. God bless you, Brenda!

*for friends, family, and dear loved ones. I feel very blessed to be surrounded by the communion of saints in heaven and here on earth! Hallelujah! Thank you for being part of that...

Gosh, it's good to consider the blessings, isn't it? Lately I've been keenly overlooking them, focusing more on the negative, hard-to-fix items in life. That's no way to live!

Warm hugs on this chilly midwestern morning. God bless and keep you!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Already November?

Our past couple of days have been a whirlwind of sorts...
a menagerie of a chef, lobster, assorted animals and a leprechaun amidst oodles of fun events, including our journey to Mass today to celebrate All Saints Day. Blessings to you!

Halloween festivities began with a trip out for ice cream on Halloween eve. We started this family tradition last year and have enjoyed meeting up with friends and their frocked children to celebrate a family-friendly version of the "holiday". We had a great crew this year...

Halloween day events included a trick-or-treating outing to the law school to meet up with GG and friends and commune with the students and office staff! What fun. The kids were adorable and the chef and crustacean, a hit. There was nothing like watching our little lobster toddle from room to room. He was oblivious of his ridiculous outfit and so darn cute!! :) Compliments to our dear Mimi for sewing the chef costume (amazing!) and tracking down the lobster get-up. Wonderful!

The kids and I headed home afterward to pass out candy... One child, in particular, became slightly candy-crazed (can you guess who?) and was a quite the pistol during dinner. Nothing like candy for bribery, though lol. "Do you want your lollipop? Okay, better eat your peas first!" O Lord, thank goodness Halloween only comes once a year!

Gosh, time really does fly! Can't believe we're already through dear October, my favorite month of the year... And I can't believe today begins the month of November; the month of Thanksgiving and the month before the one with Christmas. The holidays are already upon us!! The FlyLady in me scolds that I've yet to start my Christmas shopping... One day at a time, I suppose.

God bless you and enjoy the Halloween shots!

The crew plus a too cute leprechaun!

Law school boys and kiddos (bet you can spot my favorites in the bunch!)

Our adorable goddaughter, Margaret! Isn't she the cutest bee ever? :)

So long until next year, folks!

Lilypie First Birthday tickers