Sunday, July 20, 2014

Gracewatch will be moving....

When we started this blog years and years and years ago, our goal was to share news of our family with distant friends and relatives. At the time, having a blog was the cutting-edge way to do that.

Now, though, social media is the thing, and Google--which owns Blogger--has more or less abandoned Blogger in order to focus on developing Google+, its social networking answer to Facebook. Another thing that has changed in the past couple years: time . . . as in, I have less of it. I am working full time, caring for five kids full time, and managing a household full time. Or, actually, managing a household as best I can given the other two priorities. You know you've been busy when your four-year-old is wondering where HIS baby book is!

In its effort to boost Google+, the big G has made it easy-peasy to share just about anything and everything you do online that has Google attached to it . . . plus, they have a bifty auto-upload utility that will automatically upload photos and video to Google+ in the background. No more need to find the files, convert/compress the files, upload the files to Youtube, then embed them in a blog. You just push a button on Google+ and they're there.

All of which is to say that we will now be updating family activities almost exclusively on my Google+ profile:

Another advantage of moving to Google+ is that we can choose how to share information. Many of our updates will be shared only with family and friends. If you'd like to be added to those circles, please message me and I will do so. Otherwise, we will share some activities publicly as well.

We will continue to update this blog with longer written pieces, when time permits.

Finally, Gracewatch will be getting its own official domain name,, where I hope to post longer essays and reflection pieces.

See you around the web, folks!

Friday, June 06, 2014

Bear's eighth grade graduation + girls' bridging photos

We marked a milestone with Bear's graduation from Bluffview last night...the end of ten years of Montessori for him. It was a sweet, but bitter-sweet, ceremony. The girls also "bridged" into their next levels -- the only child NOT going through some kind of major transition was Alleluia Boy. Video to follow next week!

Monday, March 03, 2014

Recital time!

Mouse and Bear had their annual recital the other night; what you will see is Bear playing with the string ensemble, followed by Mouse on flute; then, unfortunately, only a snippet of Bear's solo piece. I thought I was recording, but I wasn't! However, you get a sense of how far he has progressed. The pause toward the end of the song is written into the music, not an accidental hesitation.

Sunday, March 02, 2014

An abundance of snow days

We have had an overabundance of "snow days" this winter, which has been brutally cold; we are on pace to crack the top 10 for the most sub-zero days this winter. School cancellations due to wind chill advisories and snow and ice have kept us home more than usual. Here's what the kids got up to on a recent day off:

Jubilee Girl learned to boil water and make mac-n-cheese.

Alleluia Boy made Lego creations.

Jubilee Girl drew this: "5-Star family," it says.

Bear coded things on the computer that I didn't understand.

The boys played with their favorite toy, magnetic shape thingies, with their
(also off school) babysitter, Uyen.

Alleluia Boy had fun with an icicle--inside.

Yeah, I have no idea either.

Mouse coached Jubilee Girl through making lunch.
Alleluia Boy looking snazzy for dress-up day. "I took a picture of you!" he says after (that's
what he's doing with his hands.)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Mouse makes lemon meringue pie!

Mouse made lemon meringue pie the other day...from scratch. Made the crust, zested the lemon peel, separated the eggs by herself, unsupervised. Impressive!

Monday, January 06, 2014

How We Spent Our Too-Cold-for-School Day

New Year's at Wilderness Territory in the Wisconsin Dells: A Slightly Rose-Colored Account

Thanks to Starling's parents, we got to spend January 1 - 3 at the Wilderness Territory Resort in the Wisconsin Dells, along with about five thousand other people. (I am not sure that is too much of an exaggeration.) Aside from some differences with management over the meaning of the word "guarantee" (as in, "We guarantee your room will be ready by 4 p.m.) and the non-wheelchair-friendly setting, we had a lot of fun. Here are the highlights:

There aren't that many pictures of Music Man swimming because usually
I was with him, holding on to him or helping him.