Thanksgiving will look different this year for many reasons. The obvious, the ongoing pandemic that we are all trying to survive and not having loved ones to celebrate with. Holidays are such a joyous time, a time of reflection of all our wonderful blessings, and reminders to be grateful, but they can be very difficult to get through when your loved ones are not there. This Thanksgiving will be especially hard, but as my Grandma did I will put on a brave face and show up for the kiddos. The boys have a short school week this week and will find out if they will be switching over to distance learning for awhile.
I like to have crafts lined up for the kids to do the day of Thanksgiving so that they can be at the kitchen table crafting, snacking, and just enjoying themselves before we eat our Thanksgiving dinner. Jasmine couldn’t wait to start coloring so I let her get a jump start since the boys are at school. We plan on making turkeys using cardstock, cutting out feathers that the kids can write all the things they are thankful for, and I printed off some Thanksgiving crosswords. If you need any Thanksgiving craft ideas search Pinterest!
This past week my dearest Grandma passed away. She was 92 and spirited as ever. My Grandma played a huge role in my life and was always present. She showed up to all my sports events, we celebrated every Holiday with her (minus two Thanksgiving Holidays), and seen each other through the highs and lows. She was an incredible woman who endured many hardships but always wore a brave face. She was told she should never have kids due to her heart (she had five). She was strong and silent.
I have so many memories of my Grandma. She had the most beautiful touch on things. She always lived close to us growing up. I would go over to her house often. Her bathrooms were always my favorite, decorated in light pink and everything was elegant. She always had candy in her purse. She was an animal lover. We would always listen to Frank Sinatra, Andrea Bocelli, or Tom Jones on road trips together. I loved her baked cinnamon apples. When I was in High School my mother had to work graveyard shifts and I would wake up in the night and walk over to my Grandma’s, knocking ever so softly and she would always wake up and let me crawl into her bed with her no matter what time I came in the night.
When I went off to college my Grandma and I would write letters back and forth. I am so happy I saved her cards and letters. I love looking at her handwriting. During my second year of college, I was on a recruiting trip to play basketball at the University of Northwestern in Chicago with my best friend. We had just landed and met the basketball coaches that we going to host us for the weekend. I checked my cell phone and had several missed messages. I instantly felt something was wrong. I listened to the first message and began crying. I was informed my Grandma had a major stroke and they were uncertain of her condition. I knew I had to get back home immediately. I was at Northwestern for only a few short hours, but it felt like a lifetime. I booked the next flight out and traveled home to be with my Grandma. I honestly, had no idea what to expect but was frightened to think of my Grandma in any pain or affected by the stroke. After the stroke, it felt like a piece of my Grandma died. She was a different person. Her independent lifestyle was no longer an option for her. Once we knew that my Grandma would never live alone again (which she did for many years because her husband passed of cancer) my mother stated she would care for her. And that’s exactly what my mother did. She took care of my Grandma for seventeen years. She dedicated herself and made sacrifices in all areas of her life. My Grandma would not have lived as long as she did without my mother’s loving devotion to her. I am so thankful for these strong women that have influenced me in so many ways.
I have so many wonderful memories of my Grandma that I will cherish. I will miss you everyday. I will hold you in my heart forever until we meet again, XO!
Over the weekend we received our first snow of the season! We had the most beautiful weather in October and it was starting to look like it would be that way for November, but we woke up on Saturday morning with snow all around and the Fall leaves still on the trees. Truly the most beautiful thing I have seen, fall leaves + snow! So magical.
The minute the kiddos woke up they immediately started to bundle up and they wasted no time heading out the door. They played outside all day. The boys attempted to make an igloo, they sledded, and made snow angels. We love snow days!
Hello friends! I can hardly believe that we are almost in Mid November. October flew by which makes me sad because it is one of my favorite months of the year. The end of October and beginning of November are always so busy for us. Jordan turned six on October 29th and between his birthday and Halloween, we are always extremely busy.
First, I want to share with you guys Jordan’s birthday. The night before his birthday Jonathan and I stayed up late decorating so he would wake up to a nice surprise. I got up early and got us doughnuts, he opened his presents, we had pizza for lunch and his favorite a Happy meal for dinner. We sang him Happy Birthday and ate cake! We had a great day celebrating with our family and loved every minute. Jordan is growing into a very kind, funny, and thoughtful boy. He loves to play with his older brother and never leaves out his little sister. He has a heart of gold and we love him so much!
Halloween this year was much different. We ended up putting a small display in our front yard/driveway on Halloween for the trick-or-treaters. We were unsure if we would get anyone. We blocked off our front door so people would not come to do the door. We made individual candy bags for the kids to grab. For our kiddos, we decided that we would not go around trick-or-treating, but planned a super fun Halloween scavenger hunt around our house and neighborhood for the kids. The boys loved it and were completely satisfied when they found the big prize at the end of the hunt, a huge bowl of candy for them to share. Also, we had the most beautiful weather on Halloween which was so nice! I didn’t take many pictures on Halloween but a few are below.
The past week and a half have been filled with highs and lows. We received a call from the boys’ school stating that someone in one of the Kindergarten classes tested positive for Covid so for extra precautions all Kindergarteners needed to self isolate for fourteen days. So Jordan has been at home doing distance learning and Jonathan is still able to go to school if he is not sick etc. I knew this year would be challenging and it has yet to disappoint, but we are just taking it day by day and remembering to count our blessings.
So over the weekend, we made these fun spider cupcakes that the kiddos thought were so cool. Pinterest has so many cute ideas for fun ways to decorate cupcakes or other Halloween goodies. When in doubt just make cupcakes and things will start to feel better!
It was beautiful weather on Saturday so we put some more Halloween decorations out in our front yard. We normally do a haunted house on Halloween but have decided not to do it this year which we are all bummed about. We have made individual candy bags and plan on leaving them in our driveway for any trick-or-treaters that come by. Also, we plan on doing a fun scavenger hunt on Halloween day for the kiddos instead of trick or treating this year.
Sunday our nice weather came to a halt! It was so cold so we made Italian tortellini sausage soup and looked at pressed leaves that we picked earlier in the week. I think we will make bookmarks with the leaves, stay tuned, and will share later once they are complete.
We have a busy week ahead with Jordan at home doing school, Jonathan going to school, and Jordan is turning six this week! I am still in disbelief, but we have party planning to do (we are just having it at home), a scavenger hunt to make still, and last-minute Halloween decorating. All while enjoying the last week of our favorite month! I can’t believe how quickly this month went!
I hope you all are doing fun, festive things this last week of October! XO
Fall break is over and the boys are back to school. We had a nice time with them being home for the week and made sure to make the last weekend count. Friday night the boys camped out in our backyard (which I am completely shocked they lasted all night). It was relatively warm throughout the night and they had a blast! They attempted to on Saturday night, but I had to be the bad guy and made them stay inside once they both came in sniffling asking for more blankets. Parenting is a roller coaster of highs and lows, but at the end of each decision love and caring are always our goals even if the kids don’t realize it.
Anyway, on Saturday, we made some homemade play dough and created Halloween inspired goodies. I always use this recipe and added a few drops of essential oils to make the dough smell delicious! Homemade playdough is one of our favorite activities. Even though the kitchen is lightly dusted with flour for days, the mess is worth the fun!
We had blustery weather on Sunday so we read Halloween books, colored Halloween doodles (I came across this free printable here ), and watched some movies. Seriously, my favorite kind of day.
This week has been nice having the boys home from school. We have had lazy mornings, lots of pancakes, and plenty of time to enjoy the Fall weather. The leaves are starting to fall off the trees and turn crunchy and our mornings are nice and crisp.
Jonathan the other day brought out our Monopoly game and we have been bouncing from Monopoly to this Fall puzzle. Since the begin of quarantine we started puzzling and have had one active puzzle at our family table. It is nice to gather around it and just small talk several times throughout the day. Jordan is our littler puzzler and has a real knack for it.
In the afternoons we have been enjoying our apples, caramel + peanut butter mix, and chocolate chips to snack on. The apples are so delicious right now since they are in season and we love to try all the different varieties. Jordan recently learned about all the different types of apples at school and so he has been very excited to talk about apples while eating them with plenty of caramel and peanut butter dip.
Even though the kiddos are eager to get back to school we plan on enjoying the weekend by making chicken noodle soup, going to the soccer field, and maybe painting some pumpkins. I hope you have a wonderful weekend! XO
The boys are on Fall break all week so we decided to kick off their break by heading to our local Pumpkin Patch. The weather was really warm and it was just a beautiful Fall day. The kiddos got to explore the entire farm. They looked at all different types of pumpkins, seen chickens, pigs, and alpacas. They had a hayride and a barrel train. We ended our fun by completing a corn maze which was the boy’s favorite thing! They could have stayed hours walking around the maze if we let them.
Overall we had a fun-filled Fall day! The kids are already asking when we can go back. They offer a few other activities later in the month that were not available the day we went so we might just have to go back one more time!
Here are a few more things we plan to check off our Fall bucket list… Paint pumpkins, jump in piles of leaves, drink hot cider outside one evening, and watch all the festive, classic Halloween movies. What’s on your Fall bucket list this year?
Happy Monday, friends! We had a quiet weekend filled with yummy food. We ate festive mini pumpkin waffles for breakfast, using this little mini waffle maker. We made an apple pie that we ate throughout the weekend and honestly just lounged around. It was smoky on Saturday but cleared by the evening.
Sunday, we did get outside and blow off some built-up energy. The weather is so beautiful right now. It was a bit cooler on Sunday giving, it a real Fall feeling with leaves starting to fall from our trees. It’s very nice to just sit outside when there is a slight cool breeze and listen to the leaves rustling, it’s so peaceful.
This week consists of getting flu shots for the kiddos, organizing a few areas of our house, and its the last week of school for the boys before Fall break next week. Hopefully, planning to take the kiddos to a pumpkin patch in our area over their Fall break (fingers crossed there is one that will be open).
Happy Friday friends! I hope you had a great week. Today marks the boys’ second full week of being able to go to school all five days without any air quality cancellations etc. We are so thankful and blessed that our skies are blue and clear. However, still praying for everyone who has been directly affected by the fires here on the West Coast. It has been truly devastating the amount of loss that has happened. We are very thankful for the hardworking firefighters during this time.
We are having the most amazing weather, every opportunity to be outside we take it. We have been going to the soccer field by our house and letting the kids run around in the evenings, walking the boys to school, and spending plenty of time in our backyard. This time of year is so nice to be out in. I hope it lasts all through the end of September and all of October. Also, how is it already October next week??!!!
Well, Jasmine and I have prepared a whole chicken for dinner this evening, possibly an apple pie (not homemade, but I think a close runner up, I will keep you posted on how it turns out and what filling I used). So we are ready for the weekend and plan on hanging outside as much as possible.