Friday, January 3, 2014

7 Quick Takes

Hello blog world.
Here are 7 quick takes 2 cents worth from my corner...
1.  We are slowly beginning the return to daily life and duties.  I am trying to maintain our Christmas peace and the great enjoyment we had reveling in our holiday break.  It's all good.  Christmas was wonderful with all our extended family, the festive food, the extra time to read, watch movies, and just hang out, but alas life calls.  School starts back on Monday.
2.  I've already begun the 1st project of the new year, driven by a sense of desperation.  I took some Christmas money and purchased some double pronged wall hooks, some attractive storage bins, and a large basket to turn our hall closet into a "mudroom".  Here's to hoping this will tame our crazy jumble of coats, gloves, shoes, etc.  Here is a picture of my inspiration...
3.  Also on this same blog is a beautiful, free, and downloadable 2014  planner/calendar!  I love new calendars :)
4.  St. Albert the Great is our family's saint for this year.  Already he has been so active in our home!  I think we scored big this year!  The kids weren't too enthusiastic about him at first, but now they are curious to learn more about him and hopefully see beyond what, to them, appeared as a somewhat boring man. 
5.  For New Years Day I made black eyed peas a new way since they've never been popular before in this household.  I simply sautéed some onions, peppers, and garlic and made a ham and bean soup with them.  Amazingly, we all loved it and got in our quota of "good luck black eyed peas"  for the new year.  My Grandma always said jokingly, but consistently..."no beans, no blessings."
6.  I heard about some scientific studies that had been done concerning the benefits to mind, body, and spirit from listening to Gregorian chant music.  It has even been shown to increase brain activity between the right and left brains, thereby increasing brain function, slow the heart rate, and calm the breathing, etc.   I have my own non-scientific, but very convincing, study on this beautiful music.  Years ago, when my oldest boy, SJ (now 15) was a baby, one of his autistic tendencies was that he absolutely hated his car seat.  He would begin crying the minute I put him in it no matter how comfortable I tried to make it.  One day in an attempt to soothe him I put in a cd of John Michael Talbo'ts chant. Within 30 seconds he quieted down and was content the rest of the ride.  After that I tried it again.  Magic.  I continued to play it every time we got in the car after that.  Everytime, upon the first note playing, the cries would immediately stop and would he would remain peaceful.  It was also effective at his bedtime.  He rolls his eyes now at the music when I play it and says it's "odd"  but I notice it still calms him, and all of us.  Below are pictures of the JMT cd we listened to and a our current favorite by the Benedictine nuns.
7.  My wish for you and yours this year... and for me and mine
"The Lord bless you and keep you!  The Lord let His face shine upon you, and be gracious to you! The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace!"
Numbers 6:24-26

This will be linked at


  1. I;m not a black eye pea fan so I make mine into a dip with salsa, hot sauce, sour cream, onion and cheese and then bake it till mice and bubbly...MMMM. We all get our black eye peas in for the new year!

  2. that dip sounds so good Jenny! Thanks for visiting!

  3. Whenever I am stressed I always play the Sisters (Advent and Angels and Saints) lately its been In Medio Ecclesiae by the Friars of the Dominican House of Studies, Province of St. Joseph. Highly recommend!!

    I had rice and pinto beans, does that count?

    Happy New Year!

  4. I would say, ye,s the rice and pinto beans definitely count !