13 Kids & Counting "Not all who wander are lost." J.R.R. Tolkien


January 23

The cold gray mists of the early morning
Descended over the stark blank slate
Of winter trees.

Streetlights have not yet shut off
The morning is still and close
Not even the neighborhood dogs
Are breaking the silence.

The mist grows heavier
Droplets are forming
The streets are slick with moisture
A lone dog breaks the silence but quickly

The cold snow has not yet begun
But hangs in the air


January 11

OK, so confession. I am a horrible dresser. I have no idea about any of this stuff.

I don’t know what shape I am. Triangle, rectangle, square, apple, pear, peach?
I don’t know what season I am. (Is that still a thing?)
I don’t know if I’m a warm or a cool.

And don’t ask me what shape face I have either. No idea.

I don’t know what colors look good on me. Nor do i know what colors look good together so my mix and match ability is pretty much nil.
I don’t know what shapes look good on me.

Here’s what I do know:
I have roseacea so my face is always red. So, I don’t think I look good in pink or red so I don’t wear it.
I am not a tiny woman, so I don’t wear horizontal stripes because my grandma always said they make you look wider.
I don’t really like floral prints. Or any prints, really. Or plaids. Or dots. (Although I am getting better with the latter three)

Anything mustard colored is probably a no.

No cheetah. No zebra. No giraffe.

I don’t wear ruffles or bows.

I don’t like skirts that are right in the middle of your shin either. Maxi skirt or knee skimming, please. But I really prefer pants.

And I prefer flats to heels. And when it comes to Crocs, just NO!! lol

Anyone want to play dress up and help me figure this out?

And Then There Were Two…

January 8

Two Marines that is!

My oldest two sons, known here as Dibuja and Slim have now both graduated from boot camp and are officially United States Marines just like their Dad & Papa!

I am so very proud of both of them and I know this is only the beginning of a great life ahead of them.

Slim was able to make it home for the holidays and Dibuja will be home for Valentines day (approximately) before heading off to his duty station.

So I’m now venturing into the realm of cool looking and amazing care packages!

Send me your favorites for inspiration!

A short poem

September 28

Pookie and Cookie

Two sisters, see?

Love to play dinos

And watch tv.

Shows about dinos

Are, of course, number one.

They can’t be outdone.

Not even in rerun.

Ok, I’m done.

Summer 2017

August 19

Oh my goodness, so much has happened this summer. 

Dibuja is now a Marine!
We took an epic road trip from the heartland all the way to San Diego for his boot camp graduation and back.Two cars, twelve people, 3200 miles!

And I tore my calf muscle!

So, the Chicago Marathon is out. I start PT Tuesday. I’m still going to run for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society just not Chicago.

I’ll post more details on all of this soon.

3 Hot Muggy Miles

June 4

3 Hot and Muggy Miles!

My son.

May 29

Well, it’s been a stressful month or so here in mama land.

Dibuja, my darling boy, is not such a boy any more. He has enlisted in the USMC. He has left for boot camp.

While I’m proud of him and his decision, I’m worried, too. This was his choice. And he is 22 years old. He’s not a little boy any more. But this is how I will always picture him:

(Sorry it’s so grainy! That’s a picture of an old picture!)

Black History Month – Day 7

February 8

Today, I’d like to honor the first African American to hold a patent, Thomas Jennings. He received a patent in 1821 for a process called dry-scouring, the predecessor of today’s dry cleaning. Although he was born a free man, some of his family was still enslaved and he used the money he made off of his patent to free them and to support abolitionist causes.

You can learn more about him on about.com’s article entitled “Thomas Jennings, the First African American Patent Holder.”

The first African American woman to hold a patent is believed to be Judy W. Reed. She developed an improvement on the existing dough kneaders that allowed for the dough to be more evenly mixed and distributed through the rollers. Her U.S. Patent No. 305,474 was issued in 1884. Nothing else is known about Ms. Reed. You can find brief blurbs about her on blackhistoryheroes.com’s article “Science and Technology: African Inventors in the Americas,” and on blackpast.org’s article, “Reed, Judy W.

Black History Month – Day 6

February 8

Today, I’d like to honor the first African American to be elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Architects in 1957, Paul R. Williams. He was licensed as an architect in 1921 by the state of California and became the first African American member of the American Institute of Architects in 1923. Mr. Williams went on to design some pretty famous landmarks like MCA & Saks Fifth Avenue as well as some homes of the rich and famous like Lucille Ball & Desi Arnaz and Frank Sinatra. You can read more about him on the webpage dedicated to him, http://www.paulrwilliamsproject.org.

The first female African American architect was Norma Sklarek. She was first licensed in 1954 by the state of New York on her first attempt at passing the exam. She, too, was honored with a Fellowship from the American Institute of Architects in 1980. And furthermore, was the first African American woman to establish and maintain an architectural firm. Some of her most famous buildings include the American Embassy in Tokyo, the Fox Plaza in San Francisco, and Terminal One at LAX. Check out her extensive biography here on biography.com’s article, “Norma Sklarek – Architect.”

Black History Month – Day 5

February 8

Today, I’m honoring the first African American clothing designer (at least that I could find). Elizabeth Keckley,  a former slave who bought her freedom, became the personal dress-maker for First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln as well as the wife of confederate president Jefferson Davis. It is believed that some of her dresses still exist today. Check out this article from the Smithsonian, “The Story of Elizabeth Keckley, Former-Slave-Turned-Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker,” including some color pictures of those dresses!

For more modern day African American fashion designers, check out these articles from complex.com, “The 25 Greatest Black Fashion Designers,” and this one from thedailybeast.com, “The Best Black Fashion Designers of All Time.”

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Welcome to Life in My House. My husband and I have 14 kids, 8 of which live at home. Plus my parents live with us, too. The age range in our house is 10 months old to 80. My husband and I both work full time and it truly does take a village to raise a family when you both work. Join me to learn what it’s like to have this many kiddos, share my joys, my frustrations, and watch me figure this whole working mom thing out.

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