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 Kids, Life Lately, Trader Joes

Life Lately

Compared to the past couple of months, life has been a little less hectic, and I’m here for it. We’ve gone from having some kind of practice every evening to practice just a couple days a week. We’ve gone from baseball tournaments and cross country meets taking up the weekend to just one basketball game on a Saturday afternoon. Also, with it getting darker earlier, it’s easier to convince my kids to get settled in for the evening.

Even with the slower pace, we’ve still been busy. So, today I’m sharing a bit of our life…lately.

Hayden’s in a 3 on 3 basketball league. Due to Covid, his regular league isn’t having a season (yet?). With this league, the season is shorter, the team is smaller, and they only play half court. That being said, he loves basketball, so I know he’s happy to be back on the court. His team won their first game on Friday evening, and Hayden had six points.

The kids (and Travis) wrapped up the regular cross country season last Saturday with the 5th/6th grade state meet. This was the first time the kids had been in a race with 6th graders, so I think there were a few nerves. It was the hottest day and the hardest course, but both battled to run pretty decent races. Hadley earned a medal, and I know Hayden wished he had placed a little higher, but we were proud of them, of course.

Y’all, I always joke that if you see me running, somebody is probably chasing me! haha…so who am I to judge?! 😂Both had an amazing season with ups and downs, PR’s, top 10 (& 1st) place finishes, and lots of miles put on those legs. They had fun with their teammates and supported each other in practices and races which is what it’s all about.

And, I have to give a shout out to Travis. He coaches this team during the busiest months of work for him, and he gives it his all. The kids don’t know how special it is to have this time and these memories with him. I know they’ll look back on these years with fond memories…and will hopefully forget that, according to them, he made them run farther in practice! 😂

On the run!

Cousin crew came to cheer the kids on!

We’ve had really beautiful weather, so I’ve been trying to ease back into working out with some walks every other day or so.

The leaves, even the ones on the ground, are so beautiful. I really do love fall!

There’s a beautiful street in Lex that’s known for their ginkgo trees. Facebook is flooded with Lexington peeps checking out the beautiful yellow leaves. For Tuesday’s recess, we decided to visit the “yellow brick road” and go for a little afternoon walk around that neighborhood.

The leaves are just stunning!

It was such a nice way to spend a few minutes on a weekday afternoon!

On Tuesday, Homer also enjoyed the lovely weather and the sunshine.

I’ve been reading Louisiana Lucky, and it’s such a cute read! I should finish it up in the next day or two.

Over the weekend, I finished watching Virgin River. Season 2 comes out November 27th, so I won’t have to wait long to see what Mel and Jack are up to!

I’d heard many people talking about The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix, and I decided to give it a try. To be honest, I don’t think I ever would have clicked on this show while just scrolling Netflix, so I’m glad for the recommendation. I’m three episodes in, and I love it so far.

This is a miniseries based off of the novel with the same name. The main character, Beth, is an orphan, and she’s on a quest to become the greatest chess player in the world. She learns how to play from the custodian at the orphanage. Beth is adopted by a couple from Lexington, so there are some Lexington references in the plot. I think the author grew up here? Anyway, I definitely recommend it based on what I’ve seen so far.

And…I’m excited because The Crown is back for Season 4 on November 15th. I was late to The Crown game, but started watching it back in March once life came to a halt! I really enjoy it as well, and can’t wait for this season.

I made a Trader Joe’s run over the weekend, and picked up some of our faves plus a few new foods to try.

  • Chicken nuggets – The kids love these for lunch.
  • Granola bars – I love these for an afternoon snack.
  • Blondie bars– This mix is perfect when you want something sweet. Hadley and her friend made these the other day, so I had to get another box to keep on hand.
  • Black bean burrito– We all love these.
  • White Cheddar shell mac & cheese– Hadley’s fave
  • Turkey and pumpkin mole burrito – This was a new find for me. I thought it was ok.
  • Everything but the Bagel Seasoning– I was running low on my other bottle, and started to panic!
  • Corn dippers – They go great with…
  • Buffalo chicken dip! – I also eat the dip with mini peppers.
  • Blue corn tortilla chips – I picked these up to mix in with our regular tortilla chips when I made sheet pan nachos for dinner on Tuesday night.
  • Chomps – Hayden’s fave!
  • Havarti Dill cheese – My fave! I eat some bites of cheese with…
  • Salami! – I love a snack plate!

I always stock up on our frozen staples when I’m at TJ’s. We eat the…

  • Gnocchi or Mushroom Risotto as a side dish at least once a week.
  • Mexican style roasted corn is usually a side dish when we eat Mexican food for dinner which is probably once a week!

Most Sundays I try to bake something for dessert. Hadley usually helps me, but she was outside playing on Sunday afternoon when I had time to make Shay’s pumpkin cake.

It was soooo good!

We also took some time this week to celebrate the end of cross country season and report cards with great grades on them! So, Hayden got the “You are Special” plate one night, and Hadley got it the next night!

It blows my mind that my kids haven’t stepped foot in a classroom in almost 8 months! I feel blessed that they are certainly persevering during these times. (Real Talk: I’m also glad they aren’t in primary grades where I know they’d need my help 90% of the time!) I’m thankful that they are pretty independent workers, for their awesome teachers, pod instructor and sitters! It really does take a village…especially during a pandemic.

I hope all of you are hanging in there as well! I know, for us, each day is different. Some days are definitely easier and better than others! And..on the “other” days, I just get in my pjs by 5:00 and count the minutes until bedtime…for all of us!

See you back here tomorrow for Friday Favorites: Thanksgiving Edition!

Take care,

Posted in Holidays, Home Decor, Let's look

Let’s Look

Today is Let’s Look!

The second Wednesday of each month, Erika and Shay host this link up, and it’s a fun way to get a peek at different aspects of our lives.

So far this year, we’ve looked at:

  • January: your bedside table
  • February: your winter wardrobe
  • March: what’s inside your purse
  • April: Easter at your house
  • May: your weekend
  • June: what’s in your carry on bag
  • July: your summer wardrobe
  • August: your desk
  • September: your school pics

This month’s topic is how you “pumpkin.” Well, we don’t mess around when it comes to pumpkins. As I’ve mentioned repeatedly, fall is my favorite season, and I especially love the month of October.

Here’s a peek at how we “pumpkin.”

Food and Drinks:

Once October hits, I add a dash of pumpkin spice to my creamer and coffee. It definitely hits the spot on a cool morning.

We love the Pumpkin Sausage Penne Pasta recipe that I got off the back of a Kroger coupon pack many years ago. I make it a few times during the fall season.

The kids, with the help of my mom and my Gma, made the first pumpkin pie of the season a couple of weekends ago. I hope to make another one soon.

A new recipe we tried this year was Andrea’s Pumpkin Sugar Cookies. So good, and definitely a family favorite!

Decorations:

I’ve shared about the fall decor at our house. I think I love fall decorations better than Christmas ones because we get to enjoy them a bit more.

Pumpkins everywhere you turn!

Trader Joe’s came in clutch this year for my porch pumpkins because my regular place had hardly any of the fun fantasy pumpkins to choose from when I stopped by in mid-September.

Fall front porch, y’all.

Pumpkin Patch:

As I shared in yesterday’s post, going to the pumpkin patch is a family tradition. We were able to go last Friday to pick out our carving pumpkins, get some apple cider donuts, and enjoy the lovely fall weather.

Pumpkin patch pics through the years…

2019:

2020:

Homer:

We can’t leave Homer out of the fall fun…I’ve purchased him a banana the past two fall seasons. He tolerates wearing them for a bit.

2019:

2020:

2020

And…

Another family tradition for us is to watch It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown together as a family. I need to be on the lookout this year for it, so I can record it for some forced family fun! 😉

Next month’s topic is Let’s Look at your holiday menu!

Thanks so much for reading this fun (for me!) post.

I’m going to take a little blogging break, but I hope to be back with a new post the beginning of next week or so.

Don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts too!

Have a great day.

Posted in Monthly Musings

Monthly Musings

Hello! It’s the last Thursday of the month (How is that even possible?), so I’m linking up with Patty and Holly for their Monthly Musings link up.

This month’s topic is Halloween and Fall.

Favorite Fall Tradition:

Hands down my favorite fall tradition is going to the pumpkin patch. When the kids were little, they’d run around and play. We always snap a few photos, pick out our pumpkins to carve, and bring home lots of apple cider donuts! My fave.

Pumpkin patch through the years…
Last year at the pumpkin patch!

Favorite Halloween Tradition:

My favorite Halloween tradition is getting together with friends, trick-or-treating, and having dinner while the kids sort all their candy! We’ve been getting together with the same core group of friends for about ten years! Through the years, we’ve added some more friends and neighbors to the mix. We always have so much fun.

lifelong friends

Halloween this Year:

This year, hopefully Halloween will look quite similar. While scrolling Facebook, I saw a post that the CDC put out their recommended guidelines, but I haven’t read the article.

So far, Halloween hasn’t been cancelled. Fingers crossed it stays that way!

Favorite Fall Recipe:

My favorite fall recipe is Pumpkin Sausage Penne Pasta. I got the recipe years ago from a Kroger coupon packet. I think I’m going to make it next week!

Last year, due to weather, trick-or-treating was moved from Thursday to Saturday afternoon. Usually, we’d have our friends over and have chili (which we did on the Saturday night). Since we were home for Thursday night Halloween dinner last year, I made a quick and easy “spooky” dinner for the kids after seeing Andrea share about her Halloween dinner for her family.

My kids loved this! I’ll need to remember to do it one night leading up to Halloween this year.

Favorite Fall Fashion Staples:

I love fall weather. You’ll most likely find me wearing a light-weight sweatshirt with shorts or a turtleneck sweater with leggings. Those are my fall staples for sure!

Using this pic again! Used it in yesterday’s post too 😂

Favorite Halloween Costume:

I’ll admit that I’m not big on Halloween dress up as an adult…but Halloween costumes for my kids are a must (of course!) My favorite costume combo that my twins have worn was in 2013 when they went as Batman and Robin.

I clearly remember Hayden saying he wanted to be Batman…and Hadley very sweetly said, “Well, I’ll be Robin!”❤️

Every time I see this photo, I crack up at her in her mask.

Here are their other costumes through the years! I loved last year when Hayden was a Ghostbuster and Hadley was a nerd. 😂

Favorite Halloween Candy:

For me, nothing beats a miniature Snickers bar. I definitely love other chocolate candy like Twix or Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

Hayden said his favorite candy is peanut M&Ms while Hadley says she loves Tootsie Rolls!

Favorite Family Halloween Movie:

Every year, I DVR It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, and we watch it as a family. I love that tradition.

Scary Movies. Yes or No?:

Scary movies are a hard no for me! I don’t need that stress in my life 😉

Favorite Fall Beverage:

We all love apple cider in the fall, and I love a glass of Pinot Noir on a cool fall evening.

What are some of your favorite fall traditions and foods? Next month’s topic is Thanksgiving Preview.

Don’t forget to check out the other ladies’ posts! Thanks so much for reading.