Nurturing True Gratefulness

What is True Gratefulness? To start, let us look more closely this phrase, True Gratefulness, and analyze the internal process that results in this desirable heart posture. True Gratefulness is deep.  It is more than just a “thank you” and appreciation for gifts and circumstances.  It is not a polite custom; a means to awardContinue reading “Nurturing True Gratefulness”

Chocolate Marbled Pumpkin Bread

Looking for a way to dress up traditional pumpkin bread?  This unique variation is an aesthetic addition to the table and simple to achieve.  While the warm fall spices are the primary flavor, the chocolate swirls add a hint of richness, which make it an irresistible dessert at any gathering. Ingredients: 1/2 can (8oz) cannedContinue reading “Chocolate Marbled Pumpkin Bread”

How to Make the Most of Eighteen Summers

“We only have eighteen summers with them.”  A friend’s social media post recently took me aback.  We have eighteen summers to enjoy with our kids.  Our family has spent many summers in the army’s “moving season”, and we try to make the most of it.  Usually we see family (as we do not always haveContinue reading “How to Make the Most of Eighteen Summers”

Orange-Mint Scented Homemade Playdough

Need a new quiet time activity or sensory bin?  Try this soothing scented homemade playdough.  Inexpensive and easy to make, this homemade recipe does not take more than ten minutes. It requires few more ingredients than flour, water and salt, yet it is as smooth and pliable as commercial doughs.  Orange-mint has been one ofContinue reading “Orange-Mint Scented Homemade Playdough”

Traveling with my Kids in Italy, Part II–Verona

This blog is a continuation of a previous blog and picks up in Verona, where I and my three (and a half) bambinos heap up almost as much trouble (and dirty laundry) as we did homemade pasta.  Previous Blog: Traveling with my kids in Italy, Part I–Urine for it Florence Roughly two hours via trainContinue reading “Traveling with my Kids in Italy, Part II–Verona”

Homemade Strawberry Lemonade

What does lemonade bring to your mind? The Smell of fresh-cut grass; Dixie cups and dimes? Wrap-around porches? The sound of pool water splashing?  It brings me back to my great-grandmother’s backyard lemon tree in orange county, where my sister dared me to eat a whole lemon.   Every June, my little skittles and I makeContinue reading “Homemade Strawberry Lemonade”

Traveling with my Kids in Italy, Part I–Urine for it, Florence!

I am not sure whether I am more proud or humbled after traveling solo with my littles.  On one hand, we always come back alive with epic memories and better bonds between each other.  On the other hand, I inevitably find myself a bit wiped out and swimming upstream in some awkward situation—most of whichContinue reading “Traveling with my Kids in Italy, Part I–Urine for it, Florence!”

Raspberry Cream Cheese Babka

Servings: 12 Difficulty: Moderate Prep time: 2 hours Bake time: 45 minutes Oven Temp: 375 and 335 Who does not love Middle Eastern breads? This delectable, one-tin wonder puts a playful twist of fresh spring fruit into a traditionally chocolate flavored sweet bread.  A babka is an enriched brioche that is rolled with filling, split,Continue reading “Raspberry Cream Cheese Babka”

A Full Cup

The internet is chock full of the call to end comparisons among moms.  Comparisons lead us to either envy or pride, and not only rob us of gratitude and joy but also provides egotistical motivation for loving behavior toward our children.  What are common standpoints we take to help us deal with comparisons? “One sizeContinue reading “A Full Cup”

How to Experience Animals without Adopting a Pet

I’ve always respected moms who care for not just their kids, but a pet or two as well.  I have a hard enough time herding my littles (which is a lot like herding cats), so we have not ventured into adopting any official pets.  However, wherever we have lived, we have sought out critters toContinue reading “How to Experience Animals without Adopting a Pet”