Thinking, Playing, Reading

Candy Bomber Col. Gail Halverson
“I know no additional happiness in life comes from more money, a bigger house, or nicer car, than comes with service.”

Seek a positive outlook on life and the world will be manageable, even if difficult. Attitude is not everything but it does affect everything. Your attitude determines your success or failure.  It is more important than your GPA. It is never so good or never so bad that the existing situation cannot be improved with patience, determination, love and hard work.”

Incredibly beautiful story here.
Thanks to Erin for sending it on.

I have been working hard on cleaning out my closets and organizing things before Advent begins. This always helps me determine what my kids really need (socks and shoes and nothing else?:) while purchasing gifts, and helps me not feel so scattered.  A clean organized house makes me feel happy.

The boys have been outside playing, while we've had nice temperatures, and I swear after the weekend was over, there were more leaves in my house than outside.

Here are two outdoor favorites:
Another thing I would kill myself on if I even attempted, but the older three really use this still!  (Yes even Abbey who went long-boarding with friends a few times this summer.)

These are another huge hit-the boys love these things and it's always the first thing friends gravitate towards. The back "tires" allow this Big Wheel (that's what we used to call them growing up) to spin in all directions which makes it extra fun. (I remember my little brothers on their Big Wheels going as fast as they could down the hill in front of our house, gravel flying.)

I was at a lull this weekend between books. (Finished We Never Asked For Wings-it was good, not as good as The Language of Flowers, only because that was such an incredibly original concept. I still really enjoyed it.)

I picked up a book I had read before and loved:

I love Gretchen's Rubin's style of writing.  She is very methodical and sites interesting sources and statistics and is very detailed, but not one bit did I find either of her books boring, because she does it all in a very personal story-telling way. Both books really helped me although when I first heard of "The Happiness Project" I rejected it as anything I'd ever like as it sounded like another grasping self-help book. I found it to be nothing like that, and so helpful to me as a mother who spends much of my time taking care of other's needs. It's really about paying attention to what makes you be the best version of yourself, and what makes your family life and relationships rich and deep.  I highly recommend both of her books.

A few favorites from the children's library section this week:

Now this was over Janey's head, but I loved it, and will read it to Patrick. This poor mother, on a tight budget, ends up sending her husband for an errand and he comes back with a young turkey of all things, to save some money. Of course it becomes more hassle than it's worth, and ends up sleeping in their only bedroom, but it's such a funny story.

Janey did love this one as did Patrick. (I shortened some pages when reading to Janey.)  This sweet lady does not want pumpkins growing on her farm, because they remind her of her childhood during the Depression when all she had to eat was made out of pumpkins. When a pumpkin plant sprouts on her lawn, she adopts a "make the most of it" attitude, and ends up working to share her bounty.

I love her country house!
The story behind the story.


  1. Have you read Sophie's Squash or Applesauce Season? Those are my youngest children's current favorites right now...I love them too! Both are ones I don't mind rereading over and over again. :-)

  2. I'm a big Gretchen Rubin fan and listen to her podcasts all the time while I'm driving or cleaning - I think you'd really like them!

  3. Too Many Pumpkins is a yearly read for us. Well, multiple times this time of year!! We dearly love that book!!