Tuesday, October 15, 2013


Ahhhh....Halloween.  A subject that is avoided by some, and completely done over the top by others. 
I have friends on both sides of the spectrum, so I hope (and pray) I don't offend any of them.  But I came across this awesome article written by someone who I have a great respect for, that I hope clears up some of the confusion brought on by this "holiday."


Here is the link to the article.  It really is a most informative (based on facts, which is something lacking much in this world today) and I think will also do a bit to shed some light on this very controversial celebration. 

In my house, we celebrate Halloween.  Not only in the secular sense of the word, yes, we do the "Americanized" trick or treating, but also in the spiritual sense.  All Hallow's Eve.  The evening before All Saints Day, a day in the Catholic church, where we remember all the saints who have gone before us, and the day after All Saints, All Soul's Day, which is a day we remember every soul who has passed, especially those in the past year (the book of names is at Mass where you can enter the loved ones you want us to pray for).

Before I read this article, the idea of the ghosts and ghouls rather made me nervous.  I would encourage my children to pick "holy" costumes, saints, nice characters, animals, etc etc.  Most of the time my children were very uninterested in anything dark and creepy.  I do still tend to want to encourage them to be positive role models in the Halloween realm, but after reading this, I might be tempted to relax that idea, as long as my children understand why we celebrate this day. 

And wouldn't it figure that the greeting card company would introduce the "witch" into the Halloween party? 

Enjoy- and Happy Halloween!

Eternal Flame.....and I don't mean the song...

Today we decided since we all had the day off that we would do a fun family activity.  We had already been to the apple farm on Saturday and spent the last two days together just hanging out. 
We decided to do a “quick hike.” 
Now, I promise, we are outdoor people.  We hike, camp and love the outdoors in general. 

But today?  You would have thought it was the first time we had ever taken 6 kids hiking with us.

Oh wait- it was the first time we’ve ever taken 6 kids hiking.

It was more like a natural disaster, which, usually we do pretty well with, and today was no different.  Have you ever tried to herd six cats?  That's about the most concrete description I can give it.  But it sure was funny, in a crazy, dirty, what the heck were we thinking, kinda way.

We waited til it cleared up and once again, proved just how BEAUTIFUL New York is!  My amazing husband did some research after we decided to go to Chestnut Ridge State park and he found a short trail, that he thought was short, but clearly, was much longer than he realized.  The hike leads you on a what would normally be a very nice, clear, wide, trail, all the way to the a site that has a waterfall with a flame inside it.  It's called "Eternal Flame" which cracks me up because if any of you are my age or older, you'll recall the song,  'Eternal Flame' by the Bangles and I kept humming it all the way down the trail.  Needless to say, I was getting on someone's nerves pretty badly at one point....(but it made me laugh outloud!!)  The trail and flame are pretty cool.  But it’s been raining.  A lot.  And even though we waited til it cleared up, the trail was still a TAD muddy. 

We also seemed to have forgotten what it’s like to hike with an infant because neither one of us even THOUGHT about bringing the backpack or the little front carry pack.  Seriously?  How can you hike carrying a baby?  The first thing my husband said was, “Do you want to try to bring the stroller?” 

I must of looked at him with this “Who the heck are you?” kind of look, because he quickly said, “Well, I thought I read it was a nice wide clear path.”
Looking back now, we both can laugh our tooshies off- because that trail was ANYTHING but clear and wide and smooth….

On the contrary, there was lots of roots, steep drops, steps, dead trees blocking the trail, and water every which way we turned.  Which the kids absolutely loved.
We really didn’t have too much trouble until we headed back from the oohing and ahhing over the “eternal flame.”  Suddenly, everyone had to pee and we needed to find a spot off the beaten path to allow the younger ones to pee. 

Standing in front of the "eternal flame"
Now, I’m 40 years old and have hiked and “pottied” in the woods for a pretty long time.  Sorry if this is TMI, but I’m keeping it real for you. I don't want for one second that you think we are ALWAYS the perfect family...  I thought when my husband took the younger girls to the back of the trail, he’d be able to help them, but what happened next, is only typical for our family.  My 10 year old runs back yelling that the 5 year old has proceeded to pee all over herself.  Sure enough, as she emerged with my husband and the 8 year old, her pants were SOAKED!  Good grief.  The first thought was, of course, I have no extra clothes for the 5 year old.  Time for some good ole fashioned creativity.  I’ll be sure to post her picture of her makeshift outfit, that she wore with quite a bit of dignity and never once complained, well, except once when it was falling down and her bootie was hanging out in the back. 
the "make shift" outfit...

My 13 & 12 year olds...

But we survived that ordeal and once back to the van, we laughed again about the stroller idea and headed back into the park to find a picnic table for dinner.  We were all famished.  

We had a great time and really enjoyed seeing the beauty of yet another spot we have “discovered” here.  Can’t wait to go back, with extra clothing of course…

You can see Canada from here!!!

Perfect sunset in a beautiful place!

Thursday, October 10, 2013

A new day and a new blog...

This is going to be my new blog “site.”  I’m afraid I had quite a frightening experience, that perhaps was mostly one sided on my part, but you know when you see something that just doesn’t sit right with you and it really starts eating at your heart?  I have this really weird sense of people.  You can ask my husband, I have single handedly predicted the jail time of at least TWO people I’ve come into contact with. 
I’m totally serious.  You’re totally rolling your eyes at me right now, but I will swear to it!!! There was the Department of Motor Vehicles dude who decided to take a 5 minute “coke” break after every single customer and had the nerve to tell me I didn’t have all the necessary paper work to process our new Honda Passport (back in 1998).  I watched this man for hours – cause that’s how long the wait was, and when I went back with my “proper” paperwork, I watched him AGAIN for hours.  I pegged him as a future prison prospect and voiced my concerns to my husband.  Who works in the field of arresting such folks, so I felt he should just consider it a favor I was doing him….
Humph….  Seriously, though?  After we were transferred, that dude was arrested along with several of his closest friends for stealing vehicle id numbers….
Doubt me still? 
There was the dude who was doing all kinds of crazy things to his house in the neighborhood we rented from while we were waiting for our house to be built.  I was pregnant with our 2nd at the time and would push my oldest in her stroller almost every day and almost every day he was 1) home- 2) doing strange and bizarre things outside his house – almost trying to camouflage  his house in a sense, or at least hide his front porch. 
Well guess what? His bizarre behavior triggered that really weird sensation in me that said this guy was up to NO GOOD.  I voiced my concerns to my husband again, thinking he might possibly be grateful for such an investigative wife, and his response?  “You think everyone is doing something suspicious.”
That is not entirely true.  I am NOT that super paranoid.  Alrite, at times I can be, but THAT time I was not and would you believe, the dude was arrested after a bank down the road was robbed?
Yep.  He was a bank robber.
So I’m 2 for 2 in the ‘spot creepy people world’ and when this “blog situation” occurred yesterday, once again that really weird sensation started flaming again.  I mean to the point of me becoming completely freaked out by it because I didn’t know who this nut was from Adam and he was in that World Wide Web and could be ANYWHERE!!!!
He started following my blog, which is cool, because that’s what bloggers do. We follow each other and learn from each other and laugh with each other and cry with each other.  But this guy was anything but a “fellow” blogger.  He was some big giant conspiracy theorist.   Unfortunately,  the frightening conspiracy was with my Church and he had this lineage of how my Church has been involved with all the creepy people of the world for the last 2000 years and how Catholics are the whore of Babylon (which, forgive me, I am well aware of people who feel this way about my Church). For him to compare us to terrorists who are trying to take over every government system in the world, and call leaders Nazi lovers and how now we’re trying to take over the American government, well, you can’t blame a girl for being a tad worried, can you?
I suppose there was the small chance he was harmless, but nothing I read on his blog indicated that what so ever.  NOTHING>  If anything, I felt it was my civic duty to report him to my husband who read over his blog, too, and then looked at me and said, “you know we don’t have time to just watch nuts right?”
Well, don’t say I didn’t warn you big guy.  I predict this dude will be arrested in some big time cyber planned attack foiled by our government (or aka the Catholics).  You heard it here first and you can chide my husband with me when I tell him, “told you so.”
But until then, I’ve decided to just write in my word perfect until something else comes along.  I have entirely too many squirrels going on in my head to keep them pent up because of one little nut in the world.  (Even though his nuttiness is a tad more frightening than most)
Now to finish my cup of coffee and take my little peanut for a walk.
Who knows what (or who) I may see……..