Friday, July 27, 2012


We started a tradition about a year ago that has become something our family looks forward to every Monday evening. Last fall, we had a couple busy weeks in a row so we headed to our favorite local pizza joint to eat. Ever since then, Monday has become our day to always eat at Piezano's. Also, I starting using Monday as my catch up and cleaning day so it really is a perfect way to end the day. John and I look forward to it as much as the kids do.
Even Aunt Damaris confessed that she too looks forward to our Monday outing. She told me she gets excited on Sunday evening because she knows the next day is pizza day.
We've developed quite the rapport with our waitress. She knows what each of the kids like to drink. She has our table all set up and ready to go when we come complete with a high chair and booster seat. She even handprints a "Reserved" sign for our table.
We get the same thing every week.  We order 4 individual hamburger pizzas and two kid pasta plates and a ten-inch Chicken Tuscany pizza minus the green olives per Johnny Boy's request. The table is covered with paper and crayons to draw with while you are waiting. I wish I could have kept some of our creations.
Lillie does the crossword puzzle every time. It is the same one every time, but she hunts for the words.
The real reason the kid's love Piezano's. Everybody gets a little packet of candy mints after the meal. Even Clairvaux watches and waits for the waitress to deliver the treats and with lightening fast hands usually snatches all of the candy before her siblings get one.
Some times, we switch up our order and order Piezano's famous Canadian bacon and cream cheese pizza.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Aunt Mammy

Aunt Mammy visited from Florida last week. Oh, we love Aunt Mammy.
The only trouble she encounters is too much love. She is swamped by children her whole visit. I looked over at one point and she was sitting on the couch with everybody on her. It would be fun to receive that much love at once.
Move back, NOW.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Clairvaux's 2nd Birthday

Clairvaux turned two on Sunday.  She was so excited every time somebody told her "Happy Birthday, Clairvaux!"  She would say it back to you. 
She picked out this little red number by herself to wear.
We've decided for their birthdays to take them out the night before all by themselves to dinner and to a store to pick out their birthday gift. The next day will be the big family party. Their birthdays are just as fun for the siblings involved so I wouldn't want to leave them out.
She picked Target. She handed John flashcards for about 15 minutes. She picked up every pack, looked at the cover, stated what was on the cover, and then handed them to John to hold.
It was funny to just see one child in the car seat. She knew something was up.
It really was fun just to follow her around. I kept giggling like a little girl watching her shuffle along with John and I trailing behind her.
She thought this dog was real. If you pet the back of the dog, it would wimper. She kept saying "Puppy cry" and was overly concerned.
Clearance socks took a good amount of time. She touched every one.
Show off.
What will you bet she had to sit on every red ball down the row? Happy Birthday, get to ball sit for how ever long you want. It really is beautiful to just have one child out by themselves. They get to do the things you don't usually have time for. They also get to see a different side of you.
Scandalizing her parents.
She walked on every curb back to the car with ridiculous balancing skill.
For some reason, I am not very good at posting about their birthdays. I found pictures of her first birthday. I realized I hadn't posted about it last year.
I do remember at that time she wasn't eating a lot of table food, but she devoured her cupcake in 2 seconds.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Market of Farmers

Farmer's Markets are good for the mind and body. They are a far cry from Wal-mart. Everybody should be required to walk around one every Saturday. I was driving home this morning from working out and called John "Hey, let's take the kids down to the farmer's market, Noon Mass at the Newman Center, and then lunch at Yia Yia's." Of course, he is always up for fun so off we went.
The Haymarket was loaded with lovely little tents run by proud people who have developed an art or hobby. The live music only added to the already festive atmosphere.
You know how I feel about pies.
One of the my favorite sites to watch in our children is watching them watch something. I love watching them in wonder trying to figure out something or try to do something. Their faces are so innocent.  I know God looks at me this way.  My mom always said she always felt God's presence while bathing her little ones and in the middle of the night when you are up and most of the world is asleep.  We are up sacrificing sleep while nobody but God knows.  It must make Him happy.
Today, the young man in the Froggy 98 T-shirt taught me many lessons. He was mentally disabled. I watched him for some time so happy to dance and listen to the music. He was UNAWARE of anything else nor anybody watching him. He was just happy. I told John that we are so stupid sometimes. Understandably, our kids were very hot and needy mainly due to the temperature. This guy, though, wasn't. He was just happy. I told John that his parents will never have to worry about his soul.
It must feel good at the end of each day to look at such produce and know that with God's help, you produced such beauty.
What kind of person grows this beauty in their back yard? Yes. The gardener of these flowers matched their beauty. What a lovely woman.
I love mass at the Newman Center especially on Saturdays. I was walking up with little Damaris and noticed these banners.  It really is true. 
They even served their soda in Mason jars. The kids were enamored.
I've always wanted to go to Yia Yia's to eat their famous pizza, but have never been. My love affair with their style of pizza began 10 years ago in Wisconsin. I was up visiting my sister and she took me to this quaint little pizza eatery tucked back into a nook in downtown Milwaukee.  The whole set-up was out of movie.  The waiters, the cracker crust pizza served on massive round pizza trays with a certain paper underneath.  The lighting was right.  The whole thing was just fun.  We went twice while I was there.  Anyway, I have been after a cracker crust pizza ever since then.  I finally found it.  I told John that I already know with my next pregnancy I have a bad feeling we will be making several trips to Yia Yia's for their pizza once the cravings set in.  
Truman turns 2-years-old tomorrow.
We only have two more weeks with Aunt Damaris. How will I ever let her go? Her help and companionship this summer has been the greatest gift to our family. The most wonderful thing about her is her cheerful giving. She is always happy to help out and it never seems "too much" no matter what I ask her to do.