Monday, August 31, 2009

Our Little CRAZY Brown Life is coming back!

Hey dear family,
Today John Paul started Kindergarten. I had a little reality check as I searched the house for our camera to shoot a picture of him looking all adorable and handsome in his school uniform. I finally realized that both our video and digital cameras have been lost for 2 months!

Inspired by Cathy's post, I'll give you all an estimate of what our lives have included over the past few months so you'll forgive my lack of posting:

2- number of weeks the flooring guys said it would take to install, sand and stain the surface area of our first floor
4 and counting- number of weeks it actually took them...they still haven't finished the last coat of finish.
1- number of surgeries I've had this Summer (wisdom teeth)
0- number of times I will ever again schedule surgery in the midst of home renovations and Summer vacation
532- number of Benjamin Moore paint samples I went through before deciding on what to try in our first floor
15- number of actual samples we tried in the dining room before I could make a decision
300- Number of Hail Marys I prayed while searching for beautiful curtains at a decent price (it worked- prayers were answered at the Pottery Barn clearance table!)
4- Age Gabe turned this past June- I should have done a whole post- but my whole point is that this has been an extraordinarily bizarre Summer!
1- Number of times we went to see Riverdance with Gabe & John Paul to celebrate Gabe's b-day. Our boys love ethic music and instruments as well as dance. Who knows? Maybe they'll have careers in the arts?
2- Age Monica turned a week ago on Aug 21.
67- Number of dollars I spent at the Party Store purchasing balloons, streamers, candies, a pinata, tablecloths, napkins etc. all in Winnie the Pooh theme because I love my daughter so much and wanted to delight her when she woke up from her nap on her birthday.
20- Number of dollars I had actually intended on spending at the Party Store.
7- Number of hours Grandmom Lorrie spent in VA on Monica's birthday (she amtraked it both ways in one day all for love of Monnie!)
Million- Number calculating @ how much it meant to us that Grandmom Lorrie did that
2- Number of vacations we took- one with Browns and one with Pierces.
500- Number of years ago it seems that we took those vacations because ever since we returned from the beach our home has been out of order so life has been out of sync!
25- Tears I've cried today after realizing that our cameras (along with almost all of our picture memory cards) are one of casualties of this crazy Summer.
20- Number of hours it feels like Luis works on a daily basis- between DRE work and classes, testing etc. for his pursuit of this whole patent thing (if he wants to talk about it, I'll let him post:)...don't hold your breath!

So I hope to be blogging with pictures and stories soon. Thanks for reading this little summary our little brown life in all it's craziness of the past few months.
I miss checking in with my Mom, Dad, siblings, cousins and aunts!


Thursday, May 21, 2009


May 19 was Cath's Birthday. Even though it's two days late, I figured I'd post a couple of sweet pics of my dear little sister.
Mom of course has the most comprehensive set of pics on her blog:

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


It was so bittersweet to hear the news of Gram's passing this past Saturday May 9, 2009. Bitter because separation is hard. Sweet because she lived a long good life believing in the One who made her and loved her. Now I am so happy that she can rest in this love while being reunited with her family...most especially Grandad Jack Pierce and her son Edward (or was it James according to Mimi?!) that she lost at childbirth...
We know now that we are mysteriously more in touch than ever. Time and space are no longer barriers. Rather than getting lost in the sorrow of the reality of family distances, I am finding myself humored and consoled by the connection I feel to Gram when I pick up my rosary beads. She used to always embarrass me by mentioning (ad nauseam) that I got her to pray the rosary more. Now I can joke with her that SHE's the one getting ME to pick up that ancient daily prayer habit. Like her, I have trouble keeping my attention focused through the whole thing. When we used to pray it together, she would pray about a third or so of the prayers and call it a day! The scriptural rosary does the trick.
The new header picture is of Gram and Monica touching fingers last August during our last visit with her. It was really a wonderful visit and Gram put out a wonderful amount of positive energy for us. I am so grateful for that memory.
Gram, we love, love LOVE you!!!
May Perpetual light shine upon you.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Great pics

Mom has great pics posted of the kids making snowmen recently and the ones about Villanova are enjoyable as well.
If only I could take as many pictures as her...

Friday, February 27, 2009


Our thoughts and prayers are going out to Uncle Matt and Auntie Jen. We are unified in spirit as you mourn the loss of your niece Amelia Heil. We are saddened by the short length of her life but also rejoice that she is where we all want to be. In this way she is our elder. We want to be with her some day united in the communion of love described by Christ that we so often fail to believe in.
Amelia Heil, pray for us!

Weekend at "The 4 Line"

After school today I drove the kids to 4 Line Road for a weekend visit with Grandad and Grandmom Pierce and Uncle Greg. Daddy has a ton of work this weekend so it was a great excuse to give him 3 days to himself. We got here at 3 p.m. and just finished a pizza dinner.
Here's why the kids love "The 4 Line":
1. The ramp...can we say kid heaven? Sliding down Grandad's ramp with indoor trucks and such is as good as it gets.
2. Orange Juice & Chocolate Milk...Mommy pretends not to listen when Grandmom Pierce offers these 2 substances on demand.
3. Toys A Plenty- As soon as we arrived Grandmom and Uncle Greg pulled out most of the most appealing toys and brought them to Grandad's room. You can barely walk in here what with the trains, trains and more trains.
4. Uncle Greg...when I put Monica in his arms she is quite delighted because she's taller than Mommy and looks down at everyone.
5. The Gator...another element of kid heaven. We've promised them a ride in the morning. Gabe will sleep tonight anticipating the morning as if it's Christmas.
6. The Wheelchair...another most intriguing element. All 3 of my children are mystified by it...they're convinced it's magic and dream of a day when they have unlimited access to this machine from heaven.
7. Space. This house has sooooo much space. Space to run, slide, scoot and do flips. We just don't have this kind of space in Old Town Alexandria. Kids like wide open space.
8. Crackers and Cookies. Somehow these two foods make their way into our diet more than I'd like to admit while we're here. The kids have radar for it. They know Grandmom keeps a full supply and sniff it out within an hour of arrival.
9. Grandad Pierce. John Paul and Gabe like to show off their trains creations to make Grandad smile. They also get more sports statistics here than anywhere else...they're loyalty already belongs to the Villanova Wildcats, Philadelphia Phillies and Eagles...all by Grandad osmosis. But it also belongs to the Minnesota Vikings due to Daddy osmosis. They don't know the difference yet.
10. Mommy chills out sometimes at "The 4 Line". Our little trips afford Mommy the opportunity to forget about any complications of life in Alexandria (like the fact that we recently had a gunpoint burglary happen to a neighbor walking his dog at 8 p.m. in the alley next to our house). Mommy is chilled out indeed...sipping some red wine with Grandmom and Uncle Greg, forgetting about the complications of life and being grateful for the Present Moment.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Note to Self

Okay I promise I'll start blogging about the grandkids very soon with pictures and all.
But I had to write this for myself and for any night owls out there that may appreciate it.
Here it is.
Drum roll please.
Luis and I went to bed last night at 9:14 p.m.
Do you know how good I feel today?!!!
Note to self: