4. Dads can sure do impressive things in the eyes of their little boys.
5. We have in our possession four tickets to the upcoming WI Badger vs. MI Wolverine Football game. This means we have a repeat of last year only minus the kiddos and minus the MI gear on Pat and I! Can't wait for Keefe and Holly to visit and can't wait for the game...Go Badgers!!
6. I have said it before on here how much I love fall and I love it for so many reasons! But, here is what I am loving at the moment...
Cute Warm Hats
Pumpkin Spice Lattes
Oh and look at this deliciousness I just discovered...
Starbucks pumpkin cheesecake muffin.
The boys and I devoured this delicious, totally bad for you with a 1.5 inch layer of cream cheese.
I made these muffins this weekend and they were great!
7. A few weeks ago, I finished the book...
It was an excellent book. My heart just poured out for Jacob as an old man in the nursing home, but also as lost, young man searching for happiness. I would definitely recommend this book, especially to any of you looking for a new read because they are currently making it into a movie. I always think it is better to read the book before seeing the movie especially when they go and change it all up like they did for My Sister's Keeper (boo to that).
And my current read....
If you have read The Glass Castle and liked it as much as I did, you will like this too! So far, it's great!
8. We are working on a few projects around this house. I am just about done with my laundry redo. It takes me us a long time to get project from start to completion. I get side tracked by the ten other projects I want to try along with these two monkeys....
9. Michelle recently blogged links to awesome free artwork that you can print yourself. Gotta love fun, free artwork. Here is another one I thought was cute! You can send it right to your local FedEx and pick it up at your convenience. Gotta love that as well, especially when kids are in tow!
1. My mom is coming to visit in about oh...9 weeks. She will be spending Thanksgiving with us this year and that means we get to have this holiday in our own house! Yippee..I am already thinking and planning for the week she is here!
2. Jack has been without a dresser since birth. He really hasn't needed one, but to be honest it has been such a pain always hanging his clothes on hangers. Anyway, we discovered we had a dresser that we were not using so we gave it a little redo and here it is (sorry about the massive amount of chalk fingerprints...oops):
I don't have a before picture, but it was basically a plain honey color dresser. This is special piece of furniture though as it belonged to my Uncle when he was a little boy. I was living in Milwaukee after college and I must have been dresser-less, so my Aunt gave me this dresser to use and I have had it ever since. Well, about six years ago my Uncle Mike passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. It's nice to have a little piece of him in my home and so special that it is now part of Jack's room.
Before I started working on this dresser, I saw this piece that gave me mega inspiration. I thought adding the numbers gave it some major cuteness, however, it has also helped me as a mother and helped Jack to become more independent. I did not expect this at all, but I can say, "Jack, please get yourself a pair of underwear in number 2" or "Jack, please go pick out a pair of jammies in number 4". He knows right where they are...slick! The bookcase we made from plans found at Knock Off Wood, a piece of craftsmanship Pat is very proud of.
3. I bought a label maker and I am currently on a mission called "Mission Organization". It feels so good, so very good!
4. Jack has been in school now for 2 weeks and it is going fantastic. He loves it! His curriculum thus far has been the following:
His favorite part of school are their daily nature walks. He comes home so excited to tell me about the various things they see during these walks, like last week when he told me, "Momma, we saw two water stridors...two!" If it weren't for these nature walks, this Momma would never know what's going on at school. Jack is basically mum about everything else....is that a boy thing or what?
5. Ummm, how come I've never taken the time to check out Houzz. One word: addicting.
6. We had some family pictures taken recently in honor of O's 18 month-old status. Jessica is a superbly awesome photographer who started her business mostly by teaching herself along the way. Very cool in my book! I love these photos. Note to self though: don't try something new with my hair on a humid, hot day when getting family pictures taken. My hair is a frizzy mess...grrrrr!
7. We went for a long walk this past weekend in the vineyard.
There are rows and rows of grapes and the smell is just delicious.
We may have tried a bunch a few of the grapes along the way.
8. When Pat works late (aka Pat won't be home for dinner), I truly do not feel like making dinner for the boys and I. Making dinner takes a lot of work, making dinner takes my attention away from the boys or keeps us inside when we could be outside and making dinner for two little kiddos who maybe don't appreciate as much as Pat and I do is truly tiresome (sorry Mom for my endless complaining about Quiche and bean soup). And the clean-up...I won't even start.So instead, on those infrequent days that Pat won't be with us for dinner, we play outside and then we go out to dinner at this cute little restaurant in our township. We are waited on, cleaned up after and the boys get to end their meals with these giant cookies smothered in 2 inch orange frosting with sprinkles.
And I'm not sure which of those three boys is the happiest?
I made Vegetable Pie the other night for dinner and I was reminded how absolutely wonderfully delicious it is. Pat and the boys (especially Pat) really liked it. Pat kept asking, "what is this...it's so good?" as he was taking large bites.
This is a recipe that my Aunt Carolyn introduced to me a long time ago and I was randomly reminded of it recently. I thought to myself, I need to make that and make it soon. I had just happened to have a pie crust in the freezer about to expire and a bunch of veggies in the refrigerator (Sunday night was vegetable baked spaghetti..another hit among all three boys). So I confirmed this extremely simple recipe from my Auntie (source of recipe...I forgot to ask) and set to work.
It's so easy to make and it is truly melt-in-your-mouth delicious! With that being said, I thought I would share the recipe with you because you seriously should make this...seriously!
-Vegetables-any you have on hand
*I used the following*
-1/2 green pepper
-1/2 red pepper
-1/2 orange pepper
-1/2 medium sweet onion
-1/2 yellow squash
-1 Roma tomato
**I stay away from vegetables that can be watery, for example, mushrooms or broccoli.**
-1 stick of butter
-1 store-bought pie crust (or homemade pie crust)
-salt and pepper
-1 cup Parmesan Cheese
-2 cups Mozzarella Cheese
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Cut up all your veggies.
2. Saute all your veggies in the 1 stick of butter (I know..I know..but it's just too good!). Add salt and pepper as you go, however much you would like.
3. Mix the 1 cup of Parmesan with the 2 cups of Mozzeralla.
4. Prepare your pie crust and put into pie dish. Please don't laugh too loud when you see mine as it's pretty pathetic. I was kinda in a hurry because O-Bubs was right at my feet doing this:
5. Now you are going to start layering the cheese and vegetables. Start with the cheese then the vegetables and on your last layer of veggies top with sliced tomatoes and then the last of the cheese.
6. Top it off with the other half of your pie crust, any which way you please. I chose to go out of my comfort zone and give the lattice crust a try! I have to say I was a bit nervous to try this, but it was super easy to do and it sure makes it look pretty!
7. Bake it at 425 degrees for 20 minutes. Let it set for about 10 minutes before you dig in.
And we dug in! Delicious!
*This could be a main entree or a side dish for dinner. I made this as a side dish with grilled salmon and it was perfect together. It's very filling and so yummy you will want to have more than one helping, so having it as a main entree is a good idea too.
This past Sunday we headed out to Gull Meadow Farms for some fall fun! We went to this farm on the exact same weekend last year when Jack was a rambunctious 2.5 year-old and Owen was a 9 month-old being carried around in the Baby Bjorn. Oh how in one year so much can change! This year we were able to let both boys just go and enjoy themselves!
It was wonderful and a pure joy to watch!
Warning: picture overload.
Getting ready for Pumpkin Lane....
Jack is asking Owen, "are you so excited Owen?"
After this, they both bolted, Jack to the zip line and Owen straight to the apples.
And then to the tractor choo-choo!
Owen had to watch on the sidelines last year, but not this year.
He seriously could have done this over and over and over again!
Jack so is a child of a Momma who takes his picture constantly.
Look at that wave...right on cue.
Me: Owen what was your favorite part of the apple farm?
Gosh..O-Man's hair is so blond you can hardly see it in the sunlight.
Funny story-The other night in the bathtub, Jack was pouring water on Owen's head. He was really staring at his hair, when he asked, "Momma, when I pour water on Owen's hair it disappears...why does is disappear?...where does it go?"
The zip line...of which Jack could seriously have done over and over and over again!
Jack: Can I do the zip line 2 more times?
Us: Jack you can do the zip line like 10 more times! Actually, you can do it as much as you want. 100 times!
Me: Jack what was your favorite part of the apple farm?
Jack: Momma, my favorite was when those big kids who were 5..they were 5 years old..lots bigger than me..starting jumping really high and then that made me jump high. Really high!
The fun these boys had on the jumping pillow could seriously make me consider getting a trampoline in the future (when they are much older, of course). They giggle and have belly-laughs the entire time they are jumping and running on this thing. Owen could barely stand up, let alone actually jump, but he didn't care..he loved it!
Trampolines...what a perfect way to tire out these boys, who at times could be compared to the Energizer bunny.
Rubber duckie race...what a creative idea.
Oh my babies...growing and growing!
Slow down please...thank you.
Seeing this has moved "Make The Boys a Growth Chart" to the top of my list of to-do's!
Last year...no way would he even look at me.
This year...he is posing and smiling.
Wagon ride around the orchard.
These pics make me happy because I have two happy, healthy boys, but a bit sad because I can't believe how big they are...where did this last year go?
The past couple of days have been a bit challenging for my older Bub. Lots of warnings which led to time-outs which led to "in your room time-outs" which led to taking away Spiderman (yep, I did just type that). When these days happen it is extremely frustrating, makes me second guess my mothering and makes me ask, "What could I have done better/different?" With him all tucked into bed and sound asleep, it gives me a chance to reflect and breath. There will be bumps along the way, right? It all goes by so fast...so incredibly fast. I need to be more present and in the moment (Thank you Eckart Tolle!) with my boys. They need that from me and I need that from me. And I truly believe that during these "challenging" moments/days this outlook will help me through.
That and double-stuffed oreos and maybe a facial....definitely a facial.
Family picture with self-timer...
This bub did not want to leave...not.one.bit!
But this made it all better.
Fresh, hot off the press, homemade donuts...yum!
And this Bub was actually saying the words, "I am tired".