Posted in Kids

Girl Scouts Wrap Up

Well, a chapter of Hadley’s life has come to a close. We celebrated Troop 2299 on Sunday. It was a bittersweet evening with this amazing group of girls as this chapter of their lives closes. I’m not going to lie, I figured I’d be a bit emotional, and I was. (I waited until I got home to shed the tears) I feel like I blinked and the whole troop went from little chubby cheeked girls with toothless grins to young ladies with who’ve blossomed right before our eyes.

The girls were blessed with an amazing leader, and wonderful co-leaders throughout the years. Hadley and crew have camped, learned about nature, cleaned up local parks, baked treats for a local cancer center, attended COSI, sold cookies, gone on outdoor adventures, met with other troops, and so much more.

I will always remember going on a walk with Hadley as a kindergartener. She was home sick with a croupy cough, so we went for a walk to get some fresh air. She told me her friends were joining a Girl Scout troop and she was interested. I said, “Hadley I’m not sure if I can handle one more activity.” She said, “Well, mom, I can!” I should have known better than to try to talk Hadley out of doing something she had her mind set on. I’m so thankful for her decision to join her troop. She’s learned so much and made memories (and friendships to last a lifetime!)

I made friends too! Some of “my people” (AKA: the mom gang) I met because of Girl Scouts. Truly, our girls brought us together. We’ve had fun through the years helping, going on field trips, organizing cookie orders and more. I know these ladies will be in my life forever.

Bridging Ceremony:

On Sunday, we met at a nearby park which is where we’ve had a few activities through the years. The girls enjoyed pizza, drinks, and cupcakes while hanging out for a bit. We were able to get a few photos and the girls looked through the photo albums their leaders made for them.

It was such a thoughtful gift, and I plan on printing some more photos to add to it. That way, Hadley will have so many Girl Scout memories all in one place.

Each girl walked across the bridge one more time as their leader said their name. That tradition was a sweet way to close the Girl Scout chapter.

Memory Lane:

At the end of first grade, the girls bridged from Daisies to Brownies.

At the end of third grade, they bridged from Brownies to Juniors.

And then one more bridging ceremony to complete Junior scouts.

I can’t get over how the years have flown by and what wonderful young ladies they have become:

Here they are with their awesome leaders:

And this one is my favorite pic:

It’s from Breakfast with the Babes (baby animals) at Shaker Village in April 2017….you know, back when they’d let us make them match in cute shirts!

Through the years…

Here are some of their field trips and activities over the past six years.

Fun at the orchard:

These moms slept on the floor of a nature center for one night…haha

Have you ever tried to sleep with a stuffed wolf staring at you?!

Tea party time:

Every Girl Scout needs to master the bow and arrow…

The dads took them to the Girl Scout night baseball game (while the moms stayed home, drank some wine and watched Troop Beverly Hills!)

…and the girls were recognized at a volleyball game…

Ice skating and pizza to celebrate the holidays.

The girls dropped off gifts they’d collected for Shriner’s Children’s hospital.

They also learned about having a healthy mind and body while doing yoga.

The girls took over the capitol! (Frankfort, Ky)

…and attended COSI in March of 2020…right before the world shut down.

Cookie Time:

Cookie sales through the years have been so much fun. One mom volunteered to pick up cookie orders, organize the orders, and collect money. She’s a saint! We couldn’t have done it without her.

The girls had fun selling cookies at Kroger. The first year, they had the fun cookie costumes.

Hadley surpassed her cookie goal each year! We are so appreciative of all who supported her.

One final look:

from Daisies…

to Brownies…

…to Junior Girl Scouts

I did Girl Scouts until my troop leader moved in the 4th grade. I’ve told Hadley before that there aren’t very many who can say they were in the Girl Scouts for six years. I’m proud of her commitment to her troop and know that she will look back fondly on these years.

~Girl Scout Law

I will do my best to be honest and fair, friendly and helpful,

considerate and caring, courageous and strong,

and responsible for what I say and do, and to respect myself and others,

respect authority, use resources wisely,

make the world a better place,

and be a sister to every Girl Scout

I will do my best to be honest and fair, friendly and helpful.

These girls have done just that 💙🤎💚For six years, they’ve learned so much, shared amazing experiences, grown as individuals and impacted our community in such a special way. They will most certainly continue to make the world a better place.

Posted in Everyday Life

Day in the Life

Hello! It’s been a few months since I’ve shared a Day in the Life post. Now that we are in a back to school routine, I thought it would be fun to share what a pretty typical day looks like for me.

Here’s a peek at last Tuesday…(September 7th!)

I will say this day started off on the wrong foot for me. Tuesdays are supposed to be a morning when I wake up thirty minutes early, and get my workout in. Well, the night before, I slept horribly. From a stuffy nose and Homer randomly barking, I just didn’t sleep well. The 5:40 alarm went off, and I just hit snooze…twice! I got up at my regular (non-workout morning) alarm…6:10.

I got my cup of coffee, lit a candle, watched the news, and read some of my favorite blogs.

At 6:50, I went and washed my face and applied my serum and moisturizer.

Then, I made my breakfast and packed my lunch before waking up the kids around 7:30. I made their breakfasts before helping Hadley pack her lunch.

Then, I made the bed per usual!

I got dressed.

Then, we left for school. I dropped the kids off before heading to my school.

When I got to school, I caught up on emails, planned my day, scheduled student appointments and made copies.

Then, the day became a blur. I had a meeting, helped many students, ate my lunch (forgot to take a photo), made a couple of phone calls, met with students in the afternoon, and then had a few minutes for my afternoon snack while I caught up on paperwork. Then, I met with a few students during 6th hour before wrapping up my school day.

Before picking the kids up from school, I swung by Target to pick up a drive up order. (Hadley needed black leggings for dance practice that started the next day.)

I picked up the kids before heading to…

Kroger. Now, it’s pretty random that I had a Tuesday Kroger pick up, but I didn’t do a great job of taking advantage of Labor Day weekend and having an extra day to get chores accomplished. Target and Kroger pickup saved the day!

Once we got home, the kids helped me unpack and put up the groceries.

Then, I had about thirty minutes before we had to leave for Hayden’s cross country meet. So, I worked on my blog post for the next day.

Then, we headed to the cross country meet. Hayden and his team did an awesome job!

We got home around 7:45 and had a quick dinner of rotisserie chicken (thanks, Kroger!), Bob Evans mashed potatoes (thanks, Bob!), and fruit. That part of the evening was such a blur that I didn’t get any photos.

After dinner, we discussed the kids’ assignments, due dates, upcoming tests, etc. before everyone showered.

After my shower, I applied all my nighttime face products.

Then, I settled in for an episode of House Hunters while enjoying a piece of cheesecake from Trader Joe’s. I’d bought the cheesecake over the weekend, and it was so good. I’d never had one from Trader Joe’s.

Then, it was time to brush teeth and convince the kids to go to bed. Most nights, they end up tucking me in! 😂

I read my book for about twenty minutes while getting my Homer snuggles in.

Then, it was lights out around 10:15 which is pretty typical for me.

So that’s a little look at our day last week. I always love reading these kinds of posts, but it’s always hard for me to remember to take photos throughout the day!

I hope your week is off to a great start!

Posted in Not Just a Mom

Not Just a Mom: Morning Routine

Hello and Happy Monday! Shew…we had a busy weekend, but so fun. I’ll share more later in the week, but Friday night Hayden’s baseball team had their end of the season party (even though the season isn’t over) Then, on Saturday, we stopped by a friend’s football game before heading to Hayden’s cross country meet. Then, we went to the UK/MU football game. My Tigers lost, but it was a good one. Sunday was spent at the baseball field and then with Hadley’s Girl Scout troop! Literally, we had zero downtime, and I’m feeling it!

Today, I’m co-hosting the Not Just a Mom link up with these awesome bloggers:

This month’s topic is: Morning Routine.

My morning routine is pretty simple: coffee and quiet time with an occasional workout.

I wake up at 6:10 if I’m not doing a morning workout. Typically, on Tuesday and Friday mornings, I set my alarm for 5:40 and go to my basement for a Beachbody workout. Otherwise, I sleep in a little later, pour myself a cup of coffee, watch the news and read my favorite blogs.

I shower at night, but in the morning, I make sure to wash my face, and apply daily moisturizer. I eat a light breakfast, brush my teeth, and then do makeup and hair.

I’ve seen a post on Instagram about the order people do those morning tasks. I do my makeup, then I do my hair, and then I get dressed. I’ve always done it that way!

I wake the kids around 7:15, and get them a quick breakfast before I go and get dressed.

Travis or I always make the bed. I’ve shared that that’s a non-negotiable chore in our house for us and the kids. Everyone has to to make the bed.

Unfortunately, my routine Monday-Friday is typically rushing to pack a lunch and fussing at my kids to move faster while getting ready 😉

I’m typically out the door by 7:45 before arriving at school around 8:00.

So, that’s my morning routine. I feel like I’m forgetting something. 😆

Next month’s topic is how we handle busy nights. My answer will probably be a plan and some prayers! 😂

I hope you have a great Monday. Make sure to check out the other ladies’ posts too!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

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Posted in Clothes, Friday Favorites

Friday Favorites {#82}

Hello and Happy Friday! How was your week? Overall, we had a good one. It’s always nice when the week starts off with no work/school on Monday!

It’s Friday, so I’m linking up with Erika and Andrea for this week’s Friday Favorites.

Favorite Moment:

Hayden has been running for the middle school cross country team. Hayden is definitely running with the big boys…there’s quite the difference in some 6th graders vs some 8th graders! Last Saturday, Hayden ran his first ever 4K (2.4 miles). You may remember that Travis was the kids’ coach for 4th and 5th grades at their elementary school. This is Hadley’s first year not running since she wants to focus on dance, so Travis has been helping Hayden on his off days and during the meets. I know he was so proud of Hayden’s effort. He was the second 6th grader to cross the finish line!

Favorite Clothing Item:

I was clicking around on Walmart looking for this jacket that someone had shared, and purchased this dress on a whim to get free shipping. #math

I wore it the other day to school, and love it. It’s perfect for spring, summer, transition to fall…and it’s only $9!

Favorite Food(s):

Hadley woke up at 10:00 on Sunday and requested IHOP for breakfast. It was a dreary and cool day, and IHOP actually sounded good. We got a round of crepes, pancakes, and French Toast. It definitely hit the spot!

Also, I picked up these frittatas at Trader Joe’s last week, and they are so good. There are two in the box, but I’ve just had one with some fruit a couple of mornings this week. I will definitely buy them again.

Other Faves:

Hayden’s been loving golf, and his first match was last Saturday. He was on a team with two friends, and they scrimmaged another group of three. I hope my kids always have fun in whatever they do, but golf is certainly more recreational for him, and it’s nice to see him just go out and play.

Hayden usually has a weekday race as well as a Saturday race. The weekday races are 3k, and Hayden ran a minute faster than last week’s 3k. While the weather was warm, it wasn’t 98 degrees like in previous weeks. Also, I can tell he’s finding his groove and feeling more confident.

Homer under the kitchen table is a favorite from the week. I moved the basement rug up and put it under the kitchen table, so I think he likes a softer place to rest!

Favorite Mom Meme:

My kids definitely ask for less things now, so my years of saying “No” must be paying off.

Bonus Fave: Flashback Friday

With the big MU vs UK this weekend, this flashback from 2012 is timely. My kids (especially Hayden) bleed blue now, but at least they were Tiger fans for a while.

2011

Weekly Recap:

This week I shared my (many) Amazon purchases, some of the shows and podcasts I’ve been enjoying as well as how I meal plan. Here are the posts in case you missed one:

Also, Monday is our Not Just a Mom link up….

This month’s topic is morning routine. We’d love to have you join us!

Lastly, I’d be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge the anniversary of 9/11 tomorrow. The world feels so heavy right now. There are times I feel anxious and sad. I remember feeling that way twenty years ago as well. The years may pass by, but I will never forget that day, how I felt, and the ones who lost their lives when the unimaginable happened.

C/o Fox Baltimore

See you back here on Monday,

Posted in Let's look, Meals and Recipes

(Let’s Look) Meal Planning

Well, this four day week has apparently gotten me all messed up! I was off on my days and shared my posts on the wrong days (insert hand on forehead emjoi!)

Yesterday, Shay and Erika shared Let’s Look: Meal Planning, and I’m doing so today. #betterlatethannever

I was a girl who always needed a plan before I was ever a working mom with two very busy kids who most definitely needs a plan because…

There are mornings that my kids wake up and ask me what’s for dinner!

Meal Planning:

Here’s a little look at my process:

  • I have a paper calendar on the fridge where I write down all of our weekly activities. I sit down on Saturday night or Sunday to write those activities out and then I plan the meals accordingly.
  • Then, I make my grocery list before placing my Clicklist order. I can’t live without Clicklist. Sometimes, if I can’t figure out what I want to make, Travis just tells me he will go to the store mid-week for whatever we need. I act like I can’t go to the grocery store more than once in a week! 😂 . Honestly, for years, I did Clicklist pick up and that was it. As the kids have gotten busier and I can’t always plan the whole week, I will do grocery pick up on Sunday and then go to the store Thursday if we need something for dinner that night or if they were out of stock on something during my weekend pick up.
  • For me, Clicklist pick up is usually Sunday afternoon. Occasionally, I will do Monday pick up after school. If I do that, sometimes I will run to Kroger for whatever ingredients we need for Sunday night dinner.
  • I do try to cook Monday-Thursday, and my general plan is to make something on Sunday with leftovers for Monday. Mondays just seem to be the hardest day of the week, so I like not having to think about what to make for dinner. Then, Tuesday is either a slow cooker meal or we do rotisserie chicken with Bob Evans mashed potatoes and fruit (That’s what we had for dinner Tuesday night). For Wednesday, I often make a pasta that will make enough leftovers for Thursday night. Both Wednesday and Thursday dinners, I will serve with salad, broccoli, or green beans.
  • Like I said, once we went back to school in March and our lives started to be busier again, I at least plan for Sunday-Wednesday, and then pop into Kroger or Fresh Market for Thursday dinner if needed along with a few fresh items like strawberries or other fruit that we might want for the weekend. I’ve noticed I don’t dread going into the store if I know that it’s only for a few things.

Other Thoughts:

  • It’s easier to double up recipes in winter for things like soups, chili, and casseroles.
  • We grill a lot in the summer which is nice to only have to think about quick side dishes like baked beans, pasta salad, and watermelon.
  • I always forget about breakfast for dinner. We did that recently, and everyone was so excited for dinner.
  • I go to Trader Joe’s every other week or so. I might go once a week in the fall and winter when there are more seasonal faves that we might want more often. There’s not really anything that I buy at Trader Joe’s that I’d also buy at Kroger. For example, I typically get produce at Kroger and not at Trader Joe’s (unless we are out of something at the time). I go to TJ for Trader Joe’s only items like buffalo chicken dip, Chomps, my favorite Havarti/dill cheese, pumpkin bagels, and more!
  • If I can get organized, I prefer grocery pickup on Saturday. I’d love to get to the point where I pick up on Friday after school! I’d really be on top of my life if I could do that!
  • At least once a month, I try to just buy what we need for dinner that week. That forces the kids to finish up whatever chips we have on hand, eat the two yogurts that are left in the fridge, etc.
  • I’m not great about meal prepping for breakfast, but I did make an egg casserole a couple of weeks ago, and it was so nice to have on hand throughout the week. I tend to eat the same kinds of things for lunch or have leftovers from dinner the night before.
  • I do try to make one new recipe a week. I tend to do a really good job of this starting in January. I pin a lot of things on Pinterest and tell myself that if I have the time to do that, then I should make sure to try one new recipe a week.
  • I use my slow cooker at least once a week and even more so in the fall and winter months.
  • I have an Instant Pot and do use it but more so in the fall and winter months. If I had to choose, though, the slow cooker is my favorite!

What about you? How do you meal plan? I really enjoyed reading so many posts yesterday about how others meal plan. It’s amazing to me that those who meal plan/prep do so a bit differently.

I’ll be back tomorrow for Friday Favorites. I’ve lost track of time this week, but I definitely know that tomorrow is Friday!

Posted in Books and Shows

Watching and Listening

With school back in session, I haven’t had as much time to read, watch TV, or listen to podcasts, but I’m sharing some of the recent shows I’ve been watching and podcasts I’ve been listening to lately.

Watching:

  • Virgin River: Travis and I are mid-way through season 2, and I still really love this show. It’s sweet and simple, and I’m always rooting for Mel and Jack.
  • Titletown High: Travis was watching the first episode of this series, and I started watching it too. Maybe it’s my love for all things Friday Night Lights and Coach Taylor, but I always end up interested in these types of shows that follow sports teams and players.
  • Mare of Easttown: This is another show that both Travis and I watched this summer. I had purchased a month of HBO to watch the Friends reunion, and then we also watched Mare. I love Kate Winslet and this dark crime drama kept us interested until the very last episode. By the way, I thought there were ten episodes, and at the end of the seventh episode, I turned to Travis and said, “Well, that seemed like the end!” Then, I realized, it was the end! haha
  • Luke Bryan: My Dirt Road Diary: I love Luke Bryan, and binged his documentary a couple of weekends ago. He’s lost so many loved ones: his brother, his sister, and his brother-in-law. To see his musical career journey told by him as well as those who love and support him, was inspiring. His country, good ol’ boy accent is hard to resist! You can tell he loves his family deeply, and takes the responsibility of being there for his nieces, nephew, and parents very seriously.
  • The Goldbergs: As a family, we all love this show, but Hayden and I especially do. Somehow, we got very behind on last season. With the next season starting soon, Hayden and I watched quite a few episodes over the weekend. My family likes to joke that I have a bit of Beverly Goldberg in me 😉

…and…

  • House Hunters: Kind of random, but if I have a few minutes to kill, I will watch an episode of House Hunters. I’ve loved this show for years!

Listening:

  • The Bestie Breakdown: I read Erika and Shay‘s blogs daily, and their podcast is fun to listen to. They “break down” topics such as vacations, exercise, social media, friendship, Botox and more. I enjoy listening to their conversations!
  • Even the Rich: I’ve been an Even the Rich fan for a while, but I don’t listen to every season. I’ve just finished listening to the Back to Bennifer episodes, and enjoyed other seasons like: Free Britney, Beyonce’ and Jay-Z, Diana and Meghan and more.
  • Always Hungry: I love these short episodes with Bobby Flay and his daughter Sophie. They always talk about a food topic like pasta, cookbooks, tacos, and more! while cooking during the episodes. I like that most of the episodes are less than 30 minutes which makes them easy to listen to while making dinner or going for a walk.
  • Pod Save the Queen: This is a new podcast for me, and I’ve enjoyed it. It’s all about the Royal family, so that’s always of interest to me!
  • Calm Down: Lastly, I don’t miss an episode of Calm Down with Erin and Charissa. They are so fun to listen to. They always catch up with each other, interview guests, and have the guests give out a Calm Down award at the end of the episode. These two are funny and mildly inappropriate! haha I just always feel like I’m listening to a conversation between two really great friends!

What are you watching and listening to right now? I’d love to add to my list!

Posted in Amazon

Prime Purchases: September 2021

Hello! How was your weekend? I love a three day weekend, and this one was much needed! Back to school has felt like a big adjustment, so it was nice to have yesterday off. Now, I just need to conquer this four day week 😉

Today, I’m linking up with Tanya to share this month’s Prime Purchases.

I saw these meme recently, and they certainly apply to me over the past month (6 weeks?):

…and…

I feel like I have lots of purchases this month BUT a few were from July as well. Also, honestly, if I didn’t buy them from Amazon, I would have made multiple trips to Target and other stores, so Prime definitely continues to be a life saver!

Here are my purchases:

I’ve shared some of these items in previous posts this month, but now I’m putting everything in one Amazon post…

I mentioned that I got these sandals before our trip to California, and I wear them almost every day to school. Also, I’ve paired them with shorts, jeans, and white pants.

These sandals are one of my favorite purchases of the summer.

Sandals

I also shared this dress in my California trip recap, and I’ve worn it to church and to school as well.

Here I am as we were about to head to the track…

…and a better look at the split collar.

Plaid Dress

Hadley continues to love her back to school shorts. She has them in the rose color as well as gray and black.

We got her a women’s xs, and here they are in gray.

Linen Ruffle Shorts

This shirt has been a perfect transition piece because it’s lightweight and comfy.

This dress was perfect for summer,

vacation, and…

school! I paired it with my sandals, and I’ve also worn the gray version of this dress and paired it with sneakers and a cardigan for school.

The light weight sweater and short sleeve sweatshirt have been perfect for cooler summer days. I’ve worn both with shorts, jeans, and even my favorite Matilda Jane ruffle pants.

This waffle batwing sleeve cardigan has been a favorite of mine to throw over sleeveless dresses.

So, I had lots of clothing purchases over the past six weeks, but I knew that we were headed on our trip and then school would be starting back right after we returned. I was intentional about buying items that I knew I could wear casually and for school. Also, August 2020, for back to school, I was still wearing leggings and sweatshirts! It’s been since August 2019 that I needed to buy a few school clothing items. #makingupforlosttime

I shared a post about finally taking the time to purge my makeup bag and start fresh. I’d had the same bag, brushes, and products for far too long.

Makeup bag // Eye shadow palette // Makeup brushes

What have you been Priming lately?

Next month’s link up is on October 5th.

Thanks so much for supporting my blog by reading my posts and using affiliate links. I appreciate it! I hope you have a great week.

{this post contains Amazon affiliate links…}

Posted in Friday Favorites, Kids

Friday Favorites {#81}

Happy Friday! We made it to the (three day) weekend! I’m ready for it. We had a great week, but I’m ready for some downtime, which I think we will have on Sunday and Monday.

As always, I’m linking up with Erika and Andrea for this week’s Friday Favorites.

Today, I’m sharing some favorites from the week, day by day.

Saturday:

On Saturday, Hayden had his second middle school cross country race of the season. He ran 1.8 miles in the 98 degree heat, and was the second 6th grader to cross the finish line. He’s finding his stride (literally and figuratively) with racing with the big boys. We’re always proud of his effort!

Saturday night, Hadley spent the night at a friend’s house, and Travis was out with friends. Hayden ended his evening reading in bed with his mama! I love that he loves to read, and that he wanted to hang out with me. #wildsaturdaynight

Sunday:

I mentioned in Monday’s post that we had a long Sunday afternoon and late night of baseball. The first game was at 3:30, and his team was down 0-3. They just looked flat. Finally, two kids walked, and it was Hayden’s turn at bat. He had a solid single to center field, and drove in two runs. His team ended up winning and moved on to the next game.

They won that game, and ended up in the championship.

…and they won! It made the hour and a half drive home worth it 😉

His team is comprised of a great group of boys and wonderful coaches. They pray before and after each game, cheer each other on, and have so much fun together. I think we have one more tournament left. This season has been quite the commitment, but Hayden has grown so much as a player, and has had so much fun.

Monday:

Hadley had dance team tryouts for school last week, and on Monday night she found out she made the dance team. We had ice cream on Monday night to celebrate all the middle school milestones and achievements so far this year. (I told her that even if she hadn’t made the team, we would have ice cream because she tried her best and gave 100% of herself in the audition.)

Tuesday:

Thanks to Hurricane Ida, we had tons of rain all day on Tuesday, so Hayden’s cross country meet was canceled. While I wasn’t celebrating the fact that he didn’t get to run that evening, unexpected canceled plans on a rainy evening is always a favorite for me.

Wednesday:

Hayden earned the “You are Special” red plate last week, and Wednesday night was Hadley’s turn to be celebrated for dance. We even had her favorite dinner: salmon and Bob Evans mashed potatoes.

Thursday:

You know I love the library, and I had three books to pick up yesterday. I’m excited to read Yoga Pant Nation, and a friend recommended The View was Exhausting. I’m hoping to have time to read this weekend.

The kids are reading the first Hunger Games book for their reading class at school. They both seem to enjoy it, and Hayden already finished it. He requested book two in the series, so I was able to pick that up as well. I enjoyed the series when I read it a few years ago.

We had breakfast for dinner last night which is always a family favorite.

Other Faves:

The kids both received surprise balloons from sweet friends on the porch recently. Hayden, before cross country tryouts at the beginning of August, and Hadley, before dance tryouts last week. Such a fun surprise!

This sweet pic of Homer is a favorite from the week. He was being such a good boy!

Favorite Kid Quote:

In preparation for the upcoming basketball season, Hayden apparently Googled “ways to quickly grow taller.” He found yoga to be an answer and asked if I knew of any stretches to make him taller.

Then…

On Saturday, when I found Hayden in my bed reading his book, Homer was all snuggled up with him. Hayden said, “Homer and I are in a two person book club…even though Homer can’t read.” 😂

I don’t know where he comes up with these things, but Hayden was on a roll this week!

Favorite Mom Meme:

I can definitely relate to this meme…

Favorite Fall Quotes:

With the calendar officially turned to September, here are a few of my favorite fall quotes:

Tis the season for cooler temps and all things pumpkin!

Bonus Fave: Flashback Friday

How about this throwback from 2012 during one of the *many* times that Hadley was in timeout! Well, thankfully she doesn’t get in trouble very often now, but she can still roll those eyes…let me tell you!

Weekly Recap:

This week I shared some of the highlights from our weekend, the books I read in August, and a fun This or That post all about fall.

What do you have planned this weekend? Hayden has cross country and golf on Saturday, but we should have lots of downtime on Sunday and Monday.

I’m going to take Monday off from posting, so I will see you back here on Tuesday.

Take care,

Posted in Holidays

This or That: Fall Edition

Hello! Now that it’s September, I feel like I can say, “Happy fall” (y’all!)

Fall is by far my favorite season, and with cooler temps this week, I’m embracing the start of meteorological fall.

My mom sent this to me yesterday:

Bring on all things pumpkin!

I love when people share This or That posts on Instagram, so today I’m sharing my answers to:

  • Watching football or Watching holiday movies: I love football in the fall. To be honest, I love the socializing at tailgates part of football. We go to many home UK football games during the season, and we’ve been tailgating in the same spot for years. Actually, it’s the same spot Travis and his crew have tailgated at since college. It’s always so fun to see friends during the season and celebrate a CATS win. That being said, once it gets cold, I tend to stay home, and Hayden and Travis go to the games. I prefer holiday movies at Christmastime.
  • Carving pumpkins or Painting pumpkins: I for sure prefer pumpkin carving. Travis and I have been carving pumpkins since we started dating (I guess because I used to carve pumpkins when I was a kid, and the tradition as lived on). Now, the kids are old enough to carve their own pumpkins which is a huge rite of passage! We didn’t do it last fall, but often times our neighbors get together and carve in someone’s front yard. The kids always have so much fun, and the parents do all the carving. 😆
  • Hot chocolate or Hot tea: I’ve tried to be a tea drinker, but I’m not. I do love a hot chocolate when it’s cold, but I actually love a warm apple cider in the fall. Hadley’s the queen of drinking hot chocolate. One of her friends hosted a hot chocolate party last winter. It was so cute and a fun experience for all.
Hot chocolate bar party
  • Warm sweaters or Cozy flannels: I actually have a few cozy flannel shirts, but I love an oversized sweater.
My favorite sweater from last year.
  • Haunted houses or Scary movies: Does It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown count as spooky? 😂 I definitely don’t like haunted houses, and I will watch a scary movie; it’s just not my preference.
  • Pumpkin patches or Corn mazes: I’m for sure Team Pumpkin Patch. Again, it’s another tradition that we have. We’ve been taking the kids since they were babies.

Going to the orchard for apple cider (the drink and donuts!) and to pick our carving pumpkins is my most favorite tradition.

  • Caramel apples or Candy corn: I do like candy corn, but much prefer it in a mix like with peanuts or mixed with cereal and M&Ms.
  • Pumpkin spice or Salted caramel: I do like pumpkin spice. I get a pump of pumpkin syrup in my coffee at Starbucks, or will add pumpkin pie spice to my coffee at home with creamer.

Pumpkin pie, cookies and bread are also my favorites.

Fall is my fave. Can you tell?!

What is your favorite thing about fall?

Our temps have cooled off this week thanks to some rain, and I’m loving it. I’m sure we will have another heat wave soon, so I will enjoy this weather while I can.

See you back here tomorrow for Friday Favorites.

Posted in Books and Shows

August: What I’ve Been Reading

Hello…and Happy September 1st! I had hoped to post this yesterday, but this photo of Hayden kind of sums up my Monday, and honestly, most of Tuesday:

{he was safe, by the way} 😉

haha

So, the transition back to school kind of got in the way of my reading, but I was able to finish three books this month. (…and to my credit, one was pretty long! 😉)

This month I read…

{As always, book summaries are from Goodreads…}

Local Woman Missing

Local Woman Missing

Summary:

Shelby Tebow is the first to go missing. Not long after, Meredith Dickey and her six-year-old daughter, Delilah, vanish just blocks away from where Shelby was last seen, striking fear into their once-peaceful community. Are these incidents connected? After an elusive search that yields more questions than answers, the case eventually goes cold.

Now, 11 years later, Delilah shockingly returns. Everyone wants to know what happened to her, but no one is prepared for what they’ll find….

In this smart and chilling thriller, master of suspense and New York Times best-selling author Mary Kubica takes domestic secrets to a whole new level, showing that some people will stop at nothing to keep the truth buried.

Quick Thoughts:

I enjoy Kubica books. I’ve read The Couple Next Door, Every Last Lie, The Good Girl and I think even more books by her. This one didn’t disappoint! This book is dark and suspenseful which made it a pretty quick read for me because it held my attention. I didn’t necessarily see the ending coming, but about halfway through there were a couple of red flags that really got me thinking about a couple of the characters. I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it.

Rating:

Golden Girl

Golden Girl

Summary:

On a perfect June day, Vivian Howe, author of thirteen beach novels and mother of three nearly grown children, is killed in a hit-and-run car accident while jogging near her home on Nantucket. She ascends to the Beyond where she’s assigned to a Person named Martha, who allows Vivi to watch what happens below for one last summer. Vivi also is granted three “nudges” to change the outcome of events on earth, and with her daughter Willa on her third miscarriage, Carson partying until all hours, and Leo currently “off again” with his high-maintenance girlfriend, she’ll have to think carefully where to use them.

From the Beyond, Vivi watches “The Chief” Ed Kapenash investigate her death, but her greatest worry is her final book, which contains a secret from her own youth that could be disastrous for her reputation. But when hidden truths come to light, Vivi’s family will have to sort out their past and present mistakes—with or without a nudge of help from above—while Vivi finally lets them grow without her.

With all of Elin’s trademark beach scenes, mouth-watering meals, and picture-perfect homes, plus a heartfelt message—the people we lose never really leave us—Golden Girl is a beach book unlike any other.

Quick Thoughts:

So, I’ve seen some conflicting reviews about this book. Some don’t like the supernatural element, but I enjoyed that perspective of Vivian looking down and watching over her family after she was gone. That being said some of Vivian’s exchanges with Martha seemed a bit hokey and a little unnatural. All that to say, I’ve enjoyed every Elin Hilderbrand book I’ve read, and I loved this one too. I liked the idea of Vivian having the three nudges combined with the evolving family and friends’ relationships after Vivian’s death. Those relationships combined with solving the mystery of who the driver was who hit Vivian provided for a really interesting plot. This book was on my summer reading list, and it was the perfect way to cap off my summer reading.

Rating:

The Four Winds

The Four Winds

Summary:

Texas, 1934. Millions are out of work and a drought has broken the Great Plains. Farmers are fighting to keep their land and their livelihoods as the crops are failing, the water is drying up, and dust threatens to bury them all. One of the darkest periods of the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl era, has arrived with a vengeance.

In this uncertain and dangerous time, Elsa Martinelli—like so many of her neighbors—must make an agonizing choice: fight for the land she loves or go west, to California, in search of a better life. The Four Winds is an indelible portrait of America and the American Dream, as seen through the eyes of one indomitable woman whose courage and sacrifice will come to define a generation.

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Nightingale and The Great Alone comes an epic novel of love and heroism and hope, set against the backdrop of one of America’s most defining eras—the Great Depression

Quick Thoughts:

I’ve been wanting to read this book for quite some time, and I’m so glad that I finally read it. I loved it. Now, I knew it would be heavy. It’s set during the Great Depression. It was, in fact, a heavy read. There isn’t a lot of light or hope in Elsa’s life. That being said, she was inspiring to me. I can’t imagine being a mother who shoulders the responsibility of everything in today’s world, let alone having to be the sole caretaker and provider during Great Depression. Elsa is courageous. She is fierce. She is determined. I will say the ending crushed me. I was an invested reader, and I thought I knew how it would end…but I was wrong.

There are female characters in books that I will always remember. Scout in To Kill a Mockingbird. Elizabeth Bennett in Pride and Prejudice. Lydia in American Dirt. Kya in Where the Crawdads Sing. I can definitely add Elsa to that elite list of fierce females.

You know I love a book when I share some favorite quotes:

  • “Life went on, even in the hardest of time…”
  • “It wasn’t the fear that mattered in life. It was the choices made when you were afraid. You were brave because of your fear, not in spite of it.”

I’m sure we can all relate to Elsa’s grit and determination at some point in our lives even if we haven’t travelled across the country in a run down truck, worked tirelessly in a field, or pinched pennies to budget for basic necessities.

Rating:

Summer Reading Update:

These were the books on my summer reading list:

  • Here’s to Us: read!
  • Big Summer: started but couldn’t really get into it.
  • The Summer House: read!
  • Girls of Summer: read!
  • That Summer: had to return it before I could read it.
  • Golden Girl: read!

So, while I did a lot of reading this summer, I only read 4 of my 6 summer books. Honestly, this is also why I fail at book clubs. haha I did like having a plan on some books I wanted to read while mixing in other ones as they became available at the library.

What have you been reading lately? Let me know what I should add to my list.

{this post contains Amazon affiliate links…}