"A (wo)man should hear a little music, read a little poetry, and see a fine picture every day of (her)his life in order that worldly cares may not obliterate the sense of beautiful God has implanted in the human soul."- Goethe

Friday, November 27, 2015

Grandmas Are the Best!

I don't know about you, but our grandmas are pretty much the best. Last month we took a trip with Grandma to see some Halloween spookies and spend some time together:

Time together is even better if it includes pirates and a much-anticipated pony ride. Blaze was a pro, and so was our witchy little cowgirl.

Thanks, Grandma, for the fun outing! We are still talking about it to this very day.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Potato Blessings

Guys. Things are not all peaches and cream although we try our best to live and learn. Sometimes trouble comes in pairs (or trios!) when it is least welcome. We've recently moved from being a double- to single-income family. While there are many benefits to such a change, financial comfort is not an immediate result, so we've been super careful and even more stingy than before (as if that were even possible!)

Enter trouble. First, it was our blender, a casualty in the kitchen. Then it was our microwave, a victim of over-heated rice bags. Next it was our dryer, which we ran into the ground and kept asking of it all it could give us. Fine. A blender could be considered a luxury, so we'll deal with that loss. Our microwave decided to keep on chugging despite the abuse. (Thanks, little buddy!) But life without a dryer? No thank you. We've already done that before and we have an infant (AKA- clothes destroyer), so we pinched our pennies and got ourselves a grand old beauty. These dryers, it turns out, are lovingly referred to as 'woodies' because the wooden back panel indicates the ancient nature of these rare specimens. I don't care what it's called, though, as long as we don't have to hang our clothes in the icy winter winds to dry them! (It's all about perspective, as I like to say.)

Then, in the midst of all the crazies on crazies and crazies, a small miracle occurred. We did not plant potatoes this year, yet we had some volunteer plants because I guess we sucked at digging up our harvest last year. When we went to harvest them just for kicks, we found fortune was indeed on our side and were surprised at how much and how big these guys were! What luck! Nature did not disappoint (we can always count on you, Nature!), and I feel like it was the Universe's way of telling us that we're ok after all.

I accept these delicious potato blessings. And thank you, Nature, you're the best!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Quick Thank-yous

Here's an idea for a quick and small thank-you card:

In two hours' time, make a thousand million 3" x 2" card bases, apply a watercolor wash to each base, and stamp the sentiment over the dry paint. (You can use any sentiment you like, but considering the season and all the things we have to be grateful for these days, I turned these into thank-you cards.)

I made a ton in every color of the rainbow and have already gone through most of them. They're easy to add to a plate of cookies or to tuck under a pillow or leave on someone's keyboard. I make sure to always have a substantial stash of thank-you cards on hand so that I can respond courteously and in a timely fashion.

Unless a gift comes from a very close friend or is super meaningful, I find it difficult to fill up an entire thank-you card. And call me crazy, but with larger card sizes I feel obligated to fill up all the space. Enter smaller card sizes. They can be just as genuine and kind but without all the extra fluff I find myself adding to larger cards.

Waddaya say? You wanna try these? Or do you have another thing that works well for you?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Pumpkin Patch!

One of our favorite family traditions is visiting the pumpkin patch each autumn. We have a favorite that we frequent because it has awesome activities like a hay pyramid to climb on, a tractor ride through the pumpkin fields, and a corn box, which is like a sandbox, only awesomer:

We loved visiting the animals and running through the mazes. It is good for us to form memories and experiences with our kids. Plus, being in the wholesome outdoors is always a big bonus!

Friday, November 13, 2015

Baby Bumpkins Newborn Photoshoot

Back a bit, I took some photos of our favorite baby boy:

He's since outgrown everything newborn, which is why these kinds of pictures are important. When he is a strapping 6' 7", I can show him these for proof and tell him stories of when he was nothing more than a blastocyst.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Stewart Falls Hike

Lest you think our family outdoor adventures are all fun and games, do not be deceived:

This is a more realistic picture of what these hikes are sometimes like for us. Can you just hear the groans and statements like, "Noooooo! Not the mountains again!"? We just try to focus on the good, you know?

Friday, November 6, 2015

Wilderness Appreciation- Part III, Mt. Naomi

We hauled our hineys up to the Mt. Naomi Wilderness area too:

This was not such a fun trip. Can you tell? We had a couple diaper incidents, as well as a frustrating time of trying to find access to the nearby Wellsville Wilderness.

If you know how to access the Wellsville Mountains without trespassing on private property, tell me! For reals, though. Tell me if you know! I feel like this is something I must find an answer to before I can rest peacefully in my grave (or urn, or whatever).

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Wilderness Appreciation- Part II, Mt. Nebo

The next wilderness area on our list was Mt. Nebo. I think we may have been just outside of the wilderness boundaries, but the glorious mountains we appreciated nonetheless:

Guys. This place is unreal! It feels like the world just goes on forever up there!