I was starting to think last week that perhaps February wouldn't be the bleak month it normally is, but I think now that perhaps it will be. Halfway through the month, and it seems like an endless cycle of slush, mud and colds. Gemma's nose was clear for all of 2 consecutive days and she is all runny and congested again, and Adrian and Dominic haven't gotten over their colds yet. I think that makes a total of 4 days without colds since a week before Christmas.
Besides the colds, Gemma has a diaper rash I can't get rid of. I have tried bleaching the cloth diapers to kill hidden bacteria and yeasts, I have tried putting her in disposables for a time, I have tried generic stuff for yeast infections and my own diaper ointment (which has worked miracles on even blistering rashes in the past), and now I am trying--since it goes from red and blotchy to dry and scaly--calendula oil with a few drops of GSE, vitamin E and some blessed Padre Pio oil. Nest will be investigating food allergies, I guess.
My schedule is pretty much in the toilet. We follow it rather loosely in the mornings, and then sort of wing it in the afternoons. It wasn't working, really; or should I say, it was taking way too much effort to stay on it. I want a schedule that makes the day flow more calmly, not one that is an additional stress. As I've said before, I am much too schedule-oriented and uptight to do "unschooling", but boy, I sure wish I had the nerve for it.
I had to unravel a quarter of a baby sweater I was working on. Big boo-boo many rows back, and too much difficulty in getting 150 or so stitches back on the needles. Am starting over.
Before this starts to read like Seven Lengthy Gripes on Friday, let me say that we have enjoyed a few things this week. The kids made chocolate-dipped pretzels, we've been listening to this book on tape, we have read some books about space and about Greek myths and heroes, and I made a Lenten calender like Jessica's at Shower of Roses (well, not really--hers always look as though they were ordered from a catalog!).
I am delighted: Adrian, who is 5, and Dominic, who is 3 1/2, are now able to wipe down tables, fold Papa's milking rags and empty all the waste paper baskets in the house and put in new bags. It isn't a huge thing, but their willingness to do it and ability to do it well impress me nevertheless.
I am trying to prepare Gabriel for his first Confession sometime during Lent. I don't know why this is proving so daunting this time around. Maybe it is because Una has always been a self-motivated student and I didn't have trouble finding time to work with Sebastian one-on-one, but it is proving a lot trickier this time around. Maybe I will enlist Una to help him along with learning the process. After all, she has more free time than I do, and a talent for turning everything into a game. A future Mary Poppins.