Monday, March 30, 2009


After 13 hours on the road today, my head is spinning... but we are home! Praise God for safe travels. While I admit to yelling at I-95 more than a few times (often while in a construction jam), the trip home thankfully went very smooth. The boys were absolute travel gems, even down to the last hour of being strapped in their seats. I often think some of our best times are in the car because they can't get in trouble and I am at full attention (not distracted by housework, the computer, etc.) The trip furthered this theory of mine--it was to be cherished.

We all had a great time reuniting with GG and Papa tonight. Papa was clutch in providing dinner for us, weary road warriors, and a ride home for me from the airport, where I *squeaked* in with our rental van with two minutes to spare before being charged for another day. Thanks Pop!

And many, many thanks to my amazing parents (aka. Gramz and Pappy), who went above and beyond (as usual) to give us a great "vacay"! Love you!! Here are some glimpses of our week... I have some trip highlights in store for a post tomorrow.
God bless you,

Friday, March 27, 2009

Can You Blame Me?

Hello all!! Greetings from beautiful Florida, where the kids and I have been hiding for the last few days!! I'm sorry I haven't checked in sooner...

We are in south Daytona Beach with my family and having SUCH a wonderful time. I feel so fortunate to love these people as I do. Gasperini-Ville is so blessed by them. We've been keeping to a snail's pace out at the beach, by the pool, up in the condo playing with Gramz and Pappy's beach toy stash, and among one another, enjoying good conversation and many laughs. I want to drink in every minute, it's that heartwarming!

Last evening we ventured out to see the historic lighthouse down the way and then ate dinner out by the harbor. Such fun!! The boys have been greatly enjoying time with their twin cousins and Baby J has been the darling to all. Have I mentioned before how wonderful it is to watch others delight in one's children? We surprised my parents at dinner with gifts for upcoming birthdays and holidays. They received matching iPod Shuffles, his silver and hers lime green. I've been giving Apple tutorials already this morning before my dad headed down to the gym to workout. ;)

We send our love to all, especially to our beloved GG, who is working away at home so that we can enjoy vacations like this. Thank you, my dear one! Just this morning T awoke asking for Daddy--you are greatly missed and we can't wait to see you soon! Try to take a breather while we're gone... :)

Hope you all are enjoying a wonderful week! I will try to download some trip pics as soon as I can steal away with my camera. TGIF! God bless!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Race Pics

Note: Of all the things remembered this weekend, our digital camera was not one of them! Enjoy the disposable-quality shots! :) And if you didn't catch my race results, you can find them here! Hugs and prayers to all...

And of course a shot of our "Boo Bear" in luxury!

Sunday, March 22, 2009


I finished.
I enjoyed myself immensely (goal #3, check!)
I basked in sunshine and beautiful, 50+ degree temperatures.
I set a new PR (goal #2, check!)
I reveled in my GG and sweet baby J (the others were in the wonderful care of their grandparents--thank you!)
I broke 1:40 (goal #1, check!) squeaking by with a 1:39.44 (7:36min/mi pace).
I felt marvelous.

Thank you for running this with me through your prayers, support, and encouragement.
God bless you! Pics coming tomorrow!!

Thursday, March 19, 2009


(part of) Team In Training Spring 2009 Group

Okay, I don't know what in God's creation I was thinking when I planned to prepare for two upcoming trips and tackle my spring cleaning all at the same time. Whew! Gasperini-Ville has been a busy, busy place... The laundry alone is just about doing me in!! Last night I sat in the hallway next to a pile taller than me (but I got it all folded--woohoo!) Tack onto all of this my obsession with leaving my house spotless before a big trip and I'm just about imploding! lol.

The half-marathon is in three(!!!) short days and I am gearing up. I did my last run today and the remaining days will be spent resting up for the big 13.1. I acknowledged to GG the other night just how nervous I am for this one. So much time and preparation has gone into this endeavor that I just REALLY want to run FAST!!! I know, I know, I can hear you all saying it--"Just go out there and have fun." I know. But that still doesn't change the fact that I'd like to have fun AND run fast. :)

My ultimate goal for Sunday is to run a sub 1:40 (7:37 min/mile) half. My PR from before is 1:42.15, so I guess my secondary goal would be to beat that time. My tertiary goal is to finish and enjoy the experience. Let's hope I make all three! :) In the end, though, I am beyond honored to be running on behalf of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society through Team In Training. Wearing the purple jersey will undoubtedly inspire me to push beyond time limits and energy deficits to represent people like my grandfather, Mickey, and GG's late aunt, Stephanie, who fought blood cancers. I am so honored to do so. If any of you ever want the motivation to run a longer race such as this, I encourage you to seek out a local Team In Training group in your area. It has been a really awesome experience!!

Do these two look alike or what?

Someone is sitting up! Guess who?!

Prayers to you for a blessed Thursday!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy Feast of St. Patrick!!

Our wishes: Green hugs and non-Irish (we're Italian and German by blood) wishes to you on this St. Patrick's Day! Who said you have to be Irish to partake in the fun?!

Our thoughts: Today marks the 5(!)-year anniversary since GG's return from Iraq. What an overjoyed celebration we had back in 2004 upon seeing him after a year apart. I get a lump in my throat just thinking about it... :)

Our activities: Today the boys are decked out in green as is their mama. We celebrated this morning with green candies in our pancakes and a lunchtime trip to Trader Joe's and Kohl's (what fun?! :) The boys did so well and I realized why I enjoy toting them around with me so often--they are really fun and approach life with such joy! Despite our occasional hang-ups, it really is such a pleasure to be their mother. I especially delighted in them today as they cracked up at the cashier, who pretended to throw our cantaloupe across the store. lol. I do love seeing them spread their joy to the world around them. What passerby wouldn't smile at three giggling boys in the market? They are the best. GG and I are in constant awe of their gleeful approach to life. We, adults, could learn a few things from them after all.

On the home front: I have to confess playing a little catch-up today in regard to my spring cleaning venture. I managed to excuse my way out of the weekend to-do's, leaving me with more than enough on my plate yesterday. Only half of the plantation shutters and miniblinds are clean. Only half of the bathroom cabinets have been reorganized and refreshed. I am slowly getting back on track... We DID start our Florida packing today, though, and I'm proud to report finishing Baby J and my bags! 2 down, 2 to go. We also picked up two surf shirts for the older two boys today while we were out. Advanced packing = good thing!

God bless you!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Happy News!

First things first, HAPPY BIRTHDAY today to our beloved Papa!!
Word has it that his new age includes a 1 and a 6, but no one's telling in which order. :) We love you so much and are so happy to have been here to celebrate your day with you...
Secondly, AWESOME CONGRATS to GG's brother, C, who just graduated from Infantry OBC and was awarded the Distinguished Honor Graduate!! He is so humble, but we had to brag about him here just a little bit! We're all so proud. Big prayers as C heads to Ranger School next week... Hooah!

Lt C with the boys at Thanksgiving

God bless and hugs,

Friday, March 13, 2009

Holy Snow: Part II

What does snow + hot chocolate + popcorn =?
Happy Boys!
Hope your Friday is off to a similarly brilliant start! God bless!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

What We're Up To

Some of us are doing a little of this...
Or a little of that...
And the mama is reveling in this...

Isn't it fun? I just keep walking by the closet, opening it, and breathing deeply. Ahh, cleanliness does me well. I now just finished organizing and dusting the family room bookshelves and cabinets. So far, so good! While I was at it, I washed and dusted the stair rails and baseboards and clean the inside/outside of the fireplace glass/hearth. It's amazing how dirty everything gets, but especially the stair rails from little hands that use them for balance. So far, I'm liking my spring cleaning schedule because it's proving to be less overwhelming than I initially thought. While I aim to do what is written on the day, if I have more time/energy, I'll do more. In the end, it's win/win and I walk away feeling accomplished.

So now I'm off to tackle the kitchen pantry (on tap for tomorrow). Can you tell the baby is taking a marathon morning nap? :) If I can get all this done today, I'll be really ahead of the game and able to focus my energies somewhere else... Hmm... I wonder to where/whom that will be? Little boys maybe?

God bless,

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Lenten Spring Cleaning Plan

Alrighty folks, here it is. I ended up taking and refiguring Shower of Roses new plan this year. I like how she lumped tasks throughout the whole house rather than doing rooms one-by-one. By publishing this plan to you all, it will hold me to my word and the grindstone!! Come and join me, why don't you? The season of Lent is all about sacrifice, so here goes...

~ Week One ~
Wednesday, March 11th: Sort and Organize Hall Closets and Coat Closet

Thursday, March 12th: Sort and Organize DVD/Video Cabinet and Living Room Bookshelves

Friday, March 13th: Sort and Organize Kitchen Pantry

Saturday, March 14th: Sort and Organize Kitchen Drawers, Cabinets and Countertop

Sunday, March 15th: Clean Laundry Room, Organize Bathroom Drawers and Cabinets. Drop off all items to be donated to Salvation Army.

~ Week Two ~
Monday, March 16th: Clean Mini Blinds

Tuesday, March 17th: Clean all Windows and Doors; begin Florida packing

Wednesday, March 18th: Clean Oven and Range/Hood; Florida packing

Thursday, March 19th: Clean Refrigerator/Freezer, Microwave, and Coffee Pot (Run Clean Cycle); Florida packing

Friday, March 20th: Clean China Cabinet and Wash all of the Wine Glasses; Shamrock packing

Saturday, March 21st: Front Porch and Back Patio--clear remainder of leaves

Sunday, March 22nd: SHAMROCK HALF-MARATHON--go B-mama!!

~ Week Three ~
Monday, March 24th--pack for the Florida... drive... enjoy... (every mama deserves a week off during Lent, right?! :)

~Week Four~
Monday, March 30th--drive back from FL, arrive, unpack, start laundry

Tuesday, March 31st: regroup from trip, laundry, Clean Ceilings and Light Fixtures, Clean Inside Doors, Handles, and Switch Plates

Wednesday, April 1st: Dust and Vacuum (including under beds and couch, etc.)

Thursday, April 2nd: Wash Baseboards and Cabinet Fronts

Friday, April 3rd: Mop Hallway and Bathroom Floors and Remove Water Spots from Shower Door
Saturday, April 4th: Clean Cars, Inside and Out

~ Week Five ~
Monday, April 6th: Assemble Easter Baskets
Tuesday, April 7th: Prepare Easter Clothing
Wednesday, April 8th: Begin Easter Baking
Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, April 9th - 11th: Observe the Easter Triduum (I still need to write out our plans for this year.)
Sunday, April 12th: Celebrate Easter Sunday!

;) God bless,

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


An excerpt from an awesome email I received today...

*For the taxes I pay because it means I have an income.
*For the mess to clean after a party because it means I have been surrounded by friends.
*For the clothes that fit a little too snug because it means I have enough to eat.
*For my shadow that watches me work because it means I am out in the sunshine.
*For a lawn that needs mowing, windows that need cleaning, and gutters that need fixing because it means I have a home.
*For the complaining I hear about the government because it means we have freedom of speech.
*For the parking spot I find at the far end of the parking lot because it means I am capable of walking and I have been blessed with transportation.
*For my huge heating bill because it means I am warm.
*For the lady behind me in church who sings off key because it means I can hear.
*For the pile of laundry and ironing because it means I have clothes to wear.
*For weariness and aching muscles at the end of the day because it means I have been capable of working hard.
*For the alarm that goes off in the early morning hours because it means I am alive.

Spring cleaning update tomorrow, I promise! God bless!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Spring Fever

I think it's safe to say we've caught the fever...

Today the windows are open, the back door stands ajar, and the morning sun filters through the trees to find us basking in the breeze, the warmth, and the beauty of it all. Praise God for the promise of spring!

As we make our way into week 3 of our Lenten journey, our Jesus Tree is beginning to fill and brighten. We have a spring cleaning venture on the horizon thanks to several blogger mamas, who have inspired me to take a look at the nitty gritty of our home and challenge myself toward welcoming the Easter season with newness and revival! I am so encouraged to commit the remaining weeks of Lent toward this Easter home preparation. Bring on the seratonin!! :)

Some of the bloggers have created a room/task per day for the rest of Lent. While I like this approach, I can see myself needing a more detailed plan to motivate me to do a thorough job in each of my rooms. This gal set out a very aggressive plan last year that I'm going to try to adapt for Gasperini-Ville. We'll see... I will update tomorrow to show my plan.

Have a blessed Monday!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Seratonin Saturday

Thank goodness it's the weekend!  Can I get an "amen"? :)

I sat down to update the blog yesterday, wrapped up my post, read it, and then... deleted it.
Trust me, we're all better off for it.  It was a crummy Friday and my prose reflected the overall downtrodden mood.  Gasperini-Ville had a rather gloomy day with one sick boy and lots of cancelled plans.  But why wallow in them, right?!  The more I acknowledged how bad yesterday was, the greater responsibility I felt to pull myself out of the doldrums!  

Fortunately, give me a 70-degree Saturday, blue skies, and a 7-miler already in my back pocket and I'm ready to go.  How are you today?  Prayers that this finds you enjoying life, your family, and good health wherever you are.

Gasperini-Ville "fun" today includes assembly of the yet-to-be-delivered-but-they-better-get-them-here-by-today bunk beds we ordered for M and T.  Their room has been beyond sparse since my pre-baby summer push to get it together.  So we thought it time to get them off floor mattresses and into beds!  Don't worry, though, we're not planning to bunk the beds for a few years--the thought of my Knievel T on the top bunk sends me spinning.  The boys will each enjoy a twin bed for a bit and we will all be happier for it.  I promise to post some pics once the beds are up and running.  

Alrighty, off to go harass the delivery company!  Wish me well...  Happy Saturday and God bless!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Our Snow Report

Greetings to all from wintery Virginia!  It's amazing what a little storm will do to change the usual scenery of a place.  Sunday we were happily enjoying a brunch at Mimi and Papa's, laughing at some church talk of an approaching "storm".  Ha!  What were people talking about?  We then turned on the weather channel and got a taste...  Snow predictions were 8-12 inches at that time.  Woo hoo!  Gasperini-Ville caught the fever! :)  Within 24 hours, we were 6 inches under and thrilled to pieces.  The boys were ecstatic to head outdoors with GG.  We were all pumped to extend the weekend an extra day.  What a gift!

Since then, we've been hunkering down, pursuing projects around the house.  Today I attempted to tackle the curtain holdbacks in the boys' bedroom only to meet extreme frustration when the drywall mounts disappeared in the wall.  Ugh!  I should have expected something like this when I bought them yesterday at Bed Bath and Beyond.  Occasionally it would be nice if a product worked as it should.  Quality control, anyone?!  Sorry to subject you to my latest rant. :)

On a happier note, Baby J is ringing in the 7-month mark tomorrow with *almost* sitting up, "da-da-da-da" sounds all the time, raspberries galore, and an obsession with tags and phones.  Too cute!  I'll add another baby shot of him below just because along with some snow shots of the boys...

We laughed that the boys' precious snowman looked a little sleep-deprived due to the weeping of the brown M&M eyes.  lol.  
Poor guy. :)

Mid-week blessings to you. 
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