September 29, 2008


My oldest daughter turned six over the weekend. How did that happen?

In some ways things haven't changed very much. She was a spitfire as a baby and she's grown into a very dramatic child, often costumed and also often getting into trouble for punching a sibling who angers her. She can almost simultaneously be the most lovely and delightful child, helping cook in the kitchen, telling me about a story she's read or caring for a sibling and also the most annoying, aggravating kid.

I find myself completely baffled by her sometimes and at other times I think she may be the most like me. Maybe that's why she baffles me.

She certainly looks the most like me, although as much as I wanted glasses as a kid, I never got them. For her they have made a world of difference. Before she got them, she never drew anything, her ability to read went backwards and we were both frustrated. After glasses, a whole new world opened up. Now I have a hard time prying her away from books, she draws lovely pictures and she's writing as well as most of the other first graders I know.

Even though she still has the, ahem, lively personality she's always had and a sometimes interesting perspective on the truth (her first famous bout of trying to blame someone else for her misdeeds came before age 2, when she claimed the dog had taken a bite out of each apple), I marvel at the chance to be around someone so fascinating.

Whatever she does that may at times drive me completely insane, and my husband can attest to the fact that more than anyone else she does make me crazy, she's also the child which when I think about I just have to say, "Wow! What a kid." I worry more about her and pray more about her. If she just uses her powers for good, the bad guys better watch out!

September 23, 2008

The Nashville Gas Shortage

As many of you have probably heard on the news, Nashville has been experiencing something of a gas shortage. There have been long lines at the stations that had gas at all and many, many stations have just been sold out and shut down on and off for days. Not being old enough to remember the gas lines of the 1970s (I guess I lived through them, I just don't remember it), I have never seen anything like it.

Fortunately for the Adams' family, I filled up the tank on the Friday before Ike swept through Texas and Nashvillians went gas crazy. We usually only use about a half tank per week, so we're doing fine and not particularly affected by the local gas woes ourselves. Still, it is definitely a problem for a city to run out of gas.

Obviously one person was bored while stuck at home without gasoline -- and so I present a hilarious (although filled with foul language) video about the current difficulties faced by my city.

September 22, 2008

Truth in Advertising Division

Due to some comments and e-mails I have received, I have decided that I need to elaborate a bit on the photo of me at the side. Everyone has been universally complementary of it and if I do say so myself, it is a rather nice picture, however while it is a photo of me -- it is not a photo of the whole me.

You see, that photo was taken when I was a seventeen year old freshman in college. By my calculations, I only have one more year until that was taken seventeen years ago. The girl in that photo is just that -- a girl.

Since that photo was taken, I've met a nice boy and finished college. I finished two graduate degrees. I got married and have lived in several different states from Arizona to Alaska. I've also had five babies and have either been pregnant or nursing a baby (or both) since 1999. I've also gained, ahem, a bit of weight since my college weight of barely 100 lbs.

So that photo is me, but it is only a part of the history of me. I wouldn't really want to be just that seventeen year old college girl again (though I wouldn't mind weighing what she weighed). I'm glad I've grown up since then and become the woman I am now. Thank you all for the kind words about the photo, but some time soon I'll probably show you something a little more recent.

September 17, 2008

Nerd Boy

"Mom, those math problems were fun! Can you print me out another sheet of them?"

"Mom, I've memorized the Canadian provinces and territories. Can you quiz me on them?"

"Ask me the state capitals."

"Listen to me recite the Pater Noster."

What do I do with a precocious third grader? Keeping up with him is already keeping me on my toes.

September 16, 2008

All Through the Night

Guess who slept from 10:45 to 7:30 in her bassinet! Woohoo!

Read More "All Through the Night" »

September 15, 2008

Big Catholic Families

"I like being Catholic," said the eight year old. "Not only because I love the faith, but also because I have so many friends now. Before at church there were only four kids around my age. Now there are more than fifteen!"

Not all Catholic parishes are bursting with children, but we attend one with lots of large families. In fact, my husband and I were joking that with our five children we've just met the minimum quota. Of course, this isn't true, but there are an awful lot of families that take up two pews on a Sunday morning.

There are kids every where. There is noise and life. There are wiggly kids and kids who have to go to the bathroom. There are babies nursing and children fussing. And they aren't always only my children!

It is always comforting to be in a group with others like you. When doing something different, like raising a large family, it sure helps to have older moms and dads who have been through all this to talk to and friends who are doing it right now to commiserate with.

Over the weekend, we had our Catholic homeschooling group over for a potluck and annual planning meeting. By my count we had thirty-two kids and a lot of families didn't make it and some left their older children at home. I'm glad to be part of that group; to have found so many people to help me through all the tough times that come with raising and educating the children.

My son is right. It is nice being Catholic.

September 12, 2008

Apparently I'm Not a Man


I scored 10/15, which is "just enough knowledge to be dangerous." That fits me pretty well. Which is why I generally let the man in the family do the fix-it projects.

September 11, 2008

Another Anniversary

As goes without saying, the world is different today than it was seven years ago. Seven years ago, I was in Alaska and woke to the phone ringing at 7 a.m. My husband away in California was calling to tell me of the attacks that had happened and the towers that had fallen. It had all happened before I even woke up. I watched the news in shock and horror until my little boy, not quite two years old, took notice of the TV and started babbling about airplanes and smoke.

I couldn't stand the thought of him seeing the horror of it all and at the same time I was so grateful that I could shield him from it by shutting off the television. There were some parents in the thick of it, who could not do the same; those traveling on the planes with their children; those in the Pentagon and the WTC who knew they weren't going to be coming home to their children. There was no off-button for them.

Seven years later that little boy is almost nine and I have four other little ones that I hang on to and endeavor to teach and protect. The war that started that day is still going on and turning off the news won't stop my children from knowing what's happening in the world for long. Nor should they be kept entirely in the dark. Those who died and the tale of that horrible day should not be forgotten and so we have to tell the story and pray for those who were lost.

Today is a day to mourn and never, ever forget.

September 09, 2008


  • You know those days when things get done, the house isn't a wreck and the kids are learning? How come those don't happen more often?

  • I'm going to pretend the brown streaks on the bathroom wall are just mud as I scrub them away, okay?

  • I'm having a million homeschooling kids and their parents over on Saturday. It might thunderstorm. Eeek!

  • My son, breastfeeding advocate. Said five year old, "I'm pretending to be a newborn and I'm drinking out of a bottle because my mom doesn't nurse me." The eight year old looks up, "Don't play that. That's really sad."

September 08, 2008

The Idiot's Guide to Hockey

I love Terry and I miss him a great deal now that he's "not blogging." However, even when he's "not blogging" he still puts up the occasional "not blog post." Terry's Guide to Hockey is absolutely on par with some of his other classics, like his post explaining the difference between cheese puffs and cheese curls.

September 05, 2008

The Blessed Teresa of Calcutta

On this, the feast of the Blessed Teresa of Calcutta the kids and I painted and read her story.

September 04, 2008

Trouble and the Fusspot

I'll leave it to you to figure out which is which.

A Get Together

I'm slow to mention this, but the other night I had the chance to meet up with several Nashville bloggers (Meredith, Malia, and Shauna) and my friend Jo-Lynne, from Philadelphia. Jo-Lynne's been blogging for a while, but I've known her for nine and a half years, since we started chatting on-line when we were pregnant with our first children. It was fun to finally meet in person. Also pictured, two of my girls and my friend Nina, who has also been chatting with Jo-Lynne and me for the last nine and a half years.

September 01, 2008

Familiarity Breeds Contempt

My three year old sat at the table firmly resisting my demand that she take a bite of her squash, red pepper and carrots. "Eat the carrots," I told her. "You like carrots."

"Not anymore," she told me. "I got used to them."