The Catholic Housewife

The Playtime Nativity: Mary and Joseph travel to Bethlehem

Let’s play a traveling game! I’m thinking of something blue...My, what a strange mountain! We’re no in’ right along... footloose and fancy freeeeeee!


What I’ve Learned about Moving

Moving is one of those things that is always guaranteed to be, well… interesting.

INTERESTINGToday’s interesting part is sitting in the laundromat with my laptop while my clothes are drying, because we haven’t yet purchased a washer and dryer for our new home.  (Though we will be soon! My preggo belly can’t handle lugging all these bags of laundry from one side of town to the other much longer.)

Our move did go smoothly, or at least as smoothly as a move could probably go.  Bottom line, this housewife is happy to be in a house that is ours and we can set up any way we want!

Here are just a few things I’ve learned during this move.

1.  I despise being apart from my husband for long lengths of time. 

It sucks.  Really, really sucks.  So when you have to wait for mortgage paperwork to go through, then the company messes up and sets you back a few weeks, and you’re apart even longer than originally planned for, it TOTALLY sucks.

2.  It’s okay to have your extended family come and help. 

Especially when moving by yourself and your husband is already waiting for you states and states away.  My grandparents, my mom, and then my mom-in-law came and helped me get ready for the move.  Mom-in-law even let me stay with her for a week when I was waiting for our house and paperwork to be ready for us!  (Seriously, dealing with mortgage companies sucks.)

3. Moving companies are both great and a headache. 

I am one of those people who, if I have to pack up a room, will spend several hours on one box because I have to find just the right things to pack together.  I have no ability to just put a bunch of things from the same shelf/area/table in a room in the same box, and if I do manage to do it, it is only after a long span of thinking (out loud.. sorry, hubby) about the pros and cons of packing these things together.  And oh, look, I haven’t used this little gadget in AGES!  When was the last time I saw it?  Ooh, I have a picture of that day somewhere over there…   I think you get the idea.

Of course, packers/movers don’t always use as much common sense as you’d think they would.  I mean, who packs a giant coffee maker into a not-too-big box, so the coffee maker is taking up most of the box, but DOESN’T WRITE “COFFEE MAKER ON THE OUTSIDE OF THE BOX?  Seriously, who does that to their fellow human beings?!!

4. I hate unpacking. 

I’ve been trying to understand why I have absolutely no motivation to unpack any of the boxes around my lovely little new house.  If I dig back into my college psych classes, I could probably deduce that my reluctance to unpack is due to my reluctance to accept that we have fully moved way far away from anywhere we’ve lived before.  Or maybe I’m just too obsessed with making sure every little item has it’s perfect, final home the first time it comes out of the box so I don’t have to find another home for it before the next move we make.

Whichever it is, thank the Lord that my patient husband finally said “We’ve been here long enough, we’re unpacking, don’t argue just put stuff away!”  And it actually worked out pretty well!  Within a half hour we had found that darn coffee pot, and managed to unpack most of the rest of our kitchen.  Sure, some pans, bowls, and storage containers still need to find a final resting place in the pantry, but at least they are out, I can use them, and I can put them away in the space of a day.

5. It’s hard to move. 

Not physically, though it is pretty dang tiring!  I mean a move this big is really emotionally draining.  To give you an idea of where I’m coming from, as far as I can remember I’ve lived in the land of the south, the land of “Do all y’all want some more sweet tea?” and “Well bless your heart!”  (That is not a compliment, people.)

Now I live so far north that yes, I can take a five minute drive and see Canada across the river.  Oh, and apparently get some Canadian radio stations in clearer than the American ones.

One great thing has been cooler weather while I’m at the beached whale stage of pregnancy, though according to the locals “It’s so hot and humid, how do you stand it being pregnant?”  (I sweetly explain I’m from the south, so for me “hot” = “over 95 degrees and if we’re lucky it will get down to 90 degrees overnight” and “humid” means “100% humidity on a sunny, cloud-free day.”)

But I digress.  It’s hard to move.  It’s hard to be more than a day’s drive from family and friends, and to be in a completely different area of the country where the culture, retail stores, and even people’s mannerisms are all just different enough to make you remember every day that this isn’t home.


I keep reminding myself that this will feel like home soon.  As far as our house goes, it already feels like home.  I think that’s mostly because my husband and puppy are there, but it definitely helps that our house is cute (if needing a few updates), and we have pretty friendly neighbors.  And the rest is slowly starting to feel more like home, as I get used to going to the same church every week, the same grocery store, and getting into a daily routine so I don’t wake up thinking “what am I going to do today?” every single morning.

So far, the most important thing I keep reminding myself is…

6. It’s okay to be a little sad. 

You thought you might get through this post without a Disney pic, didn't you?
You thought you might get through this post without a Disney pic, didn’t you?

About a week after we moved, we decided that we needed a break from unpacking, cleaning, and finding out what had broken during the move.  So we decided to go see the new Pixar movie, Inside Out.  Of course, we went in not knowing that the entire premise of the movie revolves around a family moving across the country, from Minnesota to California.

Apparently my husband realized what the movie was about and thought “Uh-oh, this might not be the best movie for us yet.”

It’s Pixar, so of course there’s the chance you’re gonna cry.  And yes, I cried, but I’m blaming the pregnancy hormones since I cried more than once.  (Before I was pregnant I didn’t cry during movies, except for UP.  UP is my teary weakness.)UP 6But this time I cried for a different reason.  I was sitting in the theater, looking at what this family was going through, and thinking “I get it.  This is hard, and it sucks, and even though we know it can get better, right now it is all awful.  I get it.”

And what I loved about the movie was that it had a wonderful message:

Your feelings are important, and it is okay to feel a little sad.

It doesn’t mean everything is awful, that life won’t get back to normal, or that this new place will always feel big and scary.  It means you miss something that was special, even if you’re looking forward to finding a new place that will become special to you, and probably sooner than you think.

So now that I’m finally starting to see my house come together into a home, with familiar books, dishes, and that lovely coffee maker, not to mention and handsome husband and cute puppy around, it’s not as sad.

The last thing on my list is:

7. Moving can be a fun adventure. 

Some days it’s just the adventure of “wait, pull a u-turn, that was our road!”  Other days it is the adventure of having a stove delivered, but not installed, and having to completely re-think dinner (hello, pizza night.)  Sometimes it is just the lovely adventure of “Let’s enjoy our backyard, watch the dog play and sit and enjoy each other’s company.”

Since I have a hubby who is pretty good at seeing the sunny side of life, it has seemed like an adventure more often than not.  And of course, the puppy sees nothing but SQUIRRELS TO CHASE IN MY BACKYARD!!! adventure and fun all around her.  Between the two of them, and now prepping to get a nursery ready for our October arrival, I think I’ll make it through this move feeling like it’s a fun adventure.

Family, Husband

Another addition to the family!

Remember back around New Year’s, when this little cutie joined the family?

Aww... All 8 lbs. of her!
Aww… All 8 lbs. of her!

Well, here’s a little visual update on Heidi, now about 6 months old.

Attempted re-creation of the original pic. Just a li'l bigger now!
Attempted re-creation of the original pic. Just a li’l bigger now!

But the really, really REALLY big news is…

Baby announcement 1

…we’re expecting our first child this Fall!

The due date is October 1st, but we’ll see if the newest Mouseketeer waits that long.  (I’m hoping he/she doesn’t get too comfy in there and make a late entrance!)

Of course, my husband and I are super excited! We’ve only bought a few baby things, but the big search is about to begin later this month for strollers, cribs, etc.  Thankfully, I have a wonderful maternity store close to home, so I’ve already bought a few new jeans and two nice Spring/Summer dresses.

Hopefully, this helps explain why there haven’t  been too many posts lately.  Morning sickness and being tired all the time really got in the way! Thankfully, I’m finding the second trimester to be much more comfortable than the first, and I’m going to try to get a lot more posts in before D-Day (at which point we’ll be lucky if I get one little picture post up a week!)

Please keep me and my growing family in your thoughts and prayers as we go through this new chapter in our lives!

Housewife 101, Uncategorized

Housewife 101: Pets are Expensive

Lessons learned this week: 

Puppies like to chew on toys. This is ok. 
Puppies sometimes take chunks of cloth out of their toys. This is sometimes ok, if the puppy is supervised and the torn-off piece is taken away.
However, if puppy is unsupervised, she may swallow a giant piece of cloth, which will get bunched up inside of her. 
Puppy will then wake you around 5 am with violent sickness that leaves you with a lot of cleaning and running to the Animal E.R. 
The good news is, Heidi is perfectly fine! She spent almost all of Friday at the hospital getting fluids and making sure that there were no blockages in her system.  The conclusions we came to are as follows:
1. Heidi is no longer allowed outside by herself until she stops eating dirt. Big clumps of dirt with roots and grass and icky stuff. 
This was her new hobby last week, and my family and I are guessing the neighbor might be using chemicals that ran off into our yard in the rain, causing Heidi to act weird (or as my mother said, “Your dog is acting high!), then get sick.
2. Heidi can be left alone with toys, but must be checked on often if the toy is or is close to being torn/ripped/having pieces taken off. Because, apparently, she eats them, not just chewing like we thought. 
3. Animals cost a lot!  I’m glad my sweet dog is all better, but I wish the hospital bill didn’t hurt quite so much.  While I knew that we were taking on a huge responsibility when we adopted Heidi, I didn’t really think we would end up with an E.R. bill so soon.  It’s one of those things that you don’t expect, or if you do, you think “nah, it’ll be years before we have an emergency.”  
I have to say, the doctors were extremely kind, and I have a lot of respect for people who can be so calm and friendly to animals and their owners at any time of the day or night. The hospital was 24/7, and I arrived right at 6 am when the shift was about to change. For people who had been working all night, the doctor and staff were wonderful. 
Then again, I think you have to be in order to be a huge animal person.
Family, Husband

New Year Changes: Our family grew!

I have a very good reason for not writing in the past few weeks.

But…but they’re GOOD excuses.

Of course, there was Christmas, and since its the first Christmas as a married grown-up, there was Christmas cards, mailing packages, and figuring out how exactly to ‘do’ Christmas with two sets of family traditions! (We figured it out pretty well.)

Your tradition is WHAT?
            Donald’s look sums up some of our conversations about tradition combos.

But the most exciting part (and best reason for not writing) is…



Meet Heidi, the sweetest all-American mutt ever and our first fur-baby!

She likes to cuddle.
She likes to cuddle.

A few times a week, I volunteer to walk dogs at the local no-kill shelter. Of course, they usually have a few litters of sweet puppies up for adoption, in addition to the big dogs.  When my Husband comes with me, we usually take a few minutes to look at the puppies, pet them, and I usually joke about “We could take this one home!” and give him my best puppy dog eyes. (Which never works. I have terrible puppy dog eyes.)

So this time, we got back from a dog walk and saw Heidi with her sister. We took turns holding and playing with her, and I said (teasing!) “We can’t leave her here! We could take the puppy home.”

And there was no response.

No, “No dogs right now.”

No, “Put the puppy down, dear.”

No, “Maybe after our next business trip.”

There was just silence, and a Husband holding the puppy with a serious yet slightly pleased look on his face.

I immediately knew: we were taking that puppy home.

We have had her home for a week now, and it has been a fun ride of ups (like cute cuddling, playing with toys, teaching fetch and seeing huge tail wags when we come home!) and downs (like dear god, how does something so SMALL make such a BIG noise at 2 am?!)

Here are some things we’ve learned about Heidi so far:

She is a professional napper.

2 hour-long naps are not uncommon.
2 hour naps are not uncommon.

She likes to burrow.

Can't tell which side is up?
Can’t tell which side is up?
There's her left front-paw for some perspective.
There’s her left front-paw for some perspective.

She is a hoarder.

All the toys end up on her bed. And all the socks.  And the slippers.
All the toys end up on her bed. And all the socks. And the slippers.

She isn’t too sure about this harness and leash business.

Purple is definitely her color.
But purple is definitely her color.

Also, she loves football.

Also, she loves to cheer on football with her daddy.
Or maybe just cuddling with her papa?  Nah, it’s gotta be the football.

Wish us luck!

P.S. Heidi would like me to inform my readers that she does NOT like it when her mama is typing on the computer instead of playing with her. At all. Even if the majority was written when she was napping.

Magic Kingdom, Uncategorized

Roger & Anita visit Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party!

In honor of Halloween, I’d like to share some fantastic photos of the Smuggler (aka my husband) and myself at Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party!

(I do apologize that these come two days after Halloween.  Due to the Smuggler’s work, we’ve been on the road for the past few days.)

Roger & Anita at Cinderella's Castle!
Roger & Anita at Cinderella’s Castle!

Full credit for the costume goes to the Smuggler.

He was quite a hit with the Villain ladies.
He was quite a hit with the Villain ladies.  It’s probably that lovely baritone voice.

We tried to think of something very Disney, but uncommon.  The Disney Cast Members were all very impressed, often calling out hello, or trying to remember Pongo and Perdita’s owners names (most of them got it right).

My puppy hid on this ride.  He was afraid of flying out of the seat.
My puppy hid on this ride. He was afraid of flying out of the seat.

We got applause from afar a few times, for “being original,” and “not Cruella or the puppies!”

The Queen of Hearts.
The Queen of Hearts wanted to take a puppy home.

“Roger” kept getting asked to sing.  Luckily, he had memorized most of his song, and has a rather nice voice.

Don't eat the apples with this many Villains about!
Don’t eat the apples with this many Villains about!

The Haunted Mansion is AWESOME at Halloween!  Extra ghost hosts abounded, fully creepified with makeup and spiderwebs.  One ghost jumped out at us, following me all the way to the Doom Buggy entrance.  I think she enjoyed her haunting.

Visible for one night only! Now you know who drives the hearse.
Visible for one night only!   Now you know who drives the hearse.

My favorite part about the Not-So-Scary Party was the Villains’ Dance Party at the Diamond Horseshoe in Liberty Square.  No lines here!  Just walk in, dance, and interact with the Villains as much as you want.  We did the YMCA with Governor Radcliffe, wobbled with Dr. Facilier, and Lady Tremaine and her daughters hung out the entire hour we were there.

Dr. Facilier saw us, instantly came over and said, “I know someone who will very much want to see you.  Keep your puppies close, she should be here in ten minutes or so.”

(Sidenote: The character attendant was super excited to see our costumes.  He said, “Please, wait just a little longer. I have to see you meet Cruella!”)

If she doesn't scare you, no evil thing will!
If she doesn’t scare you, no evil thing will…
She was rather happy to see us...
She was rather happy to see us…
...or rather, our puppies.
…or rather, our puppies.
There was one attempt at puppy-napping.
There was one attempt at puppy-napping.
Luckily, she took a photo with us instead.
Luckily, she settled for a photo with us instead.


Before she left, Cruella took us aside and said, “Truly darlings, I do love your costumes.  I’ll be sure to tell Anita I saw you.”

She wanted a picture "with Anita," but of course she had to hog the spotlight.
She wanted a picture “with Anita,” but of course she had to hog the spotlight.

Yay!! We impressed even Cruella and the other villains and cast members!  Mission accomplished.

Now if only we could ditch these three grim grinning ghosts...
Now if only we could ditch these three grim grinning ghosts…