Category Archives: Uncategorized

I Like Thanksgiving

Short in advance post as I’ll be either watching a parade or football, visiting with family, or eating today. Or doing all three! Happy Thanksgiving!

I like that the local Hallmark store sent me a card: 

Even my non-crafty self sees a project in the front if only just to put it in a frame for next year.

And I like pie: 

Pumpkin, my mom’s “secret” recipe that I’m sure she wouldn’t mind me sharing. You can find it here: Libby’s Famous Pumpkin Pie. 😉

And my annual contribution, caramel apple pie. Note: the chopped pecans and caramel get added later as I let each person decide how much topping they’d like. I’ve been using this recipe for 17 years! I saw it on Good Morning America and tried it. It’s been on the holiday tables ever since my mother-in-law suggested I make it again for Christmas. Here’s the caramel apple pie recipe.

And of course, any good cook tastes before sharing with others. I like using the same bowl my mom always used for her leftover pumpkin pie filling. Not sure if my mom ever used the bowl for any other purpose but I only use it for pumpkin pie filling. 

And I like that after taking a moment to be thankful (and likely too full), it’s time to start thinking about Christmas!

Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving full of good food, family, friends, and all your favorites!

*Be sure to check out all the other great posts linked up with the I Like Thursday host, LeeAnna over at Not Afraid of Color.

This Is Halloween….

Unless you sang this blog post title with me, I’m a bit unsure about you right now. Happy Halloween!   

Want to know a fun fact about this blog? Today is my number one day for visitors. They arrive searching for a poem to leave with the candy bowl. Hello, visitor! The poem is here. Please, feel free to visit the blog again when the Halloween rush is over.

My boys are older now so no need for the poem. We stay home and I (mostly, sometimes the boys take a turn) answer the door.  No big plans for the today other than a bit of working this afternoon so another teacher can attend her elementary-aged child’s party.

No school parties at the middle school or high school level. I did, however, make each of the boys a Halloween treat bag. 

Maybe it will save some of the other candy for the trick-or-treaters visiting us tonight? Also, made a last-minute run to grab some non-candy treats.

Tonight for dinner, chili. My dad always used to make a giant pot of chili for the grandchildren as they met there to trick or treat. I remember my mother in law making taco soup. Perhaps, next year. And of course, pizza’s a great option if you find yourself on the go. As are those 50 cent Sonic corn dogs.

As I pass out candy, I think I’ll watch The Nightmare Before Christmas while the traditional debate happens…is it a Halloween movie or a Christmas movie?

This is Halloween at our house. What’s Halloween look like at your house?


A Walk In The Park

On Sunday, I visited Weston Bend State Park. I had visions of a lovely family day but tempers flared a bit and I visited the park solo.

I ended up taking quite a hike around the park in search of the elusive river overlook. My impatience earned me quite a bit of (much-needed) exercise.  There is a parking lot right beside the overlook. Why do that when you can hike 3 miles to see it?

I started out on the paved trail thinking it went right to the overlook…  It didn’t but I still enjoyed the fall beauty along my wrong path.  Eventually, the path connected with another trail leading to the river overlook. 

This trail wasn’t paved and included a few steeper grades and obstacles like stepping over the fallen tree.  I finally arrived at the overlook. And the full parking lot. Hiking was the right thing after all. 

Snapped a few photos from the quite crowded overlook, then headed back down the path. Time to decide…4 more miles to trek around or backtrack? 

I opted to backtrack. I’d not planned on the longer walk. Wearing pants with no pockets so carrying my phone & keys, taking photos mostly one-handed. Also, no water until I arrived at the car.

I almost took another side trail to visit the old tobacco barn. However, I opted to drive to it instead.  I snapped a few more pictures of a lovely fall day and then, started home toward the family that missed out on all the beauty of the park. And the family I missed.   

What’s Going On Wednesday: Witnessing A Monarch Miracle

Instead of writing about getting back to organizing as I planned, today’s post is about my all-time favorite butterfly.

Monarch butterflies have always been my favorites.  I’ve always wanted (still do) to go the area in Mexico where they gather during the winter/spring migration. We see monarchs passing through our area fairly regularly starting in September until usually mid-October. However, I’ve never seen more than 2 or 3 at a time.

So you can imagine my surprise when last night J suddenly yelled, “Mom, come here quick!” And I stepped outside to see this in a backyard tree: 

Why go to the butterflies when they’ll come to you!

I ran back inside to get turn off what I was cooking on the stove and grab the camera! We called over some neighbors (and the rest of our family) to see the gathering of the butterflies.

I had some trouble finding a good camera setting for them.  A gray cold front moved through starting last night. And we were losing light fast plus a few rain drops pelted us every once in a while.  I went back out this morning and took some photos using the camera’s auto setting and the flash.

Then, I had to run J to school and go to a hair appointment for myself.  The butterflies were still here when I arrived home. However, they were slowly starting to flap their wings and carry on with their southward journey. 

They didn’t leave in one large swirling butterfly cloud as I thought they might.  Rather, periodically, one would begin flapping it’s wings for a bit before soaring high in the sky and circling away. This tree is the butterfly tree: 

The butterflies clustered near the branches by the wire running across the bottom of the photo. Wish I’d figured out to use it as a marker last night.  

I sat on my boys’ swing set watching as the butterflies departed. Running inside once to grab some finger-less gloves and a jacket. Did I mention a cold front moved in over night? It’s cold! Listening to the squirrels busily gathering their acorns.  I would have stayed outside until the last butterfly departed but then this happened: 

Are you looking at me?  Different tree from my butterfly tree but close enough to me that I decided to go inside. (Confession: I’m a bit afraid of raccoons. Especially ones that come out and stare at me during the day!)

Goodbye, sweet butterflies! You can be our backyard overnight guests any time!

What’s Going On Wednesday

Been a while since I’ve posted a general “What’s Going On Wednesday” post. Seemed like a good morning  afternoon to share one.  Of course, with one teenager still sleeping it seems like morning.

Today’s Plan Vs Today’s Reality

Last night I woke up about 2:00 AM and realized the house did not feel very cool.  We were all awake because the a/c went out. And 81 degrees is not very cool outside either.

My husband installed (yes, in the middle of the night!) the window unit pictured above so we could have a bit of relief and everyone had their own fan. And no, I had no idea we had a spare window unit hanging out in our garage. For once, my husband’s insistence on keeping everything did not annoy me. Let’s keep that our secret, please.

I thought we would go swimming again today but instead I had to wait for the a/c repairman. He arrived early! And fixed our a/c! Can’t even begin to express how thankful I am for him arriving early AND for it being an easy fix. A broken part, not a whole new unit.

Sleeping Or Swimming

Since none of us slept well, I am not sure we’ll go ahead with our swimming plans. I’ll probably leave it up to the boys. Maybe we’ll just do water balloons in the yard instead. I know I could go for a nap today! Tomorrow and Friday I work again plus the boys do have plans to go swimming with their cousin this weekend.

One thing I think we’ll do today is get our free Slurpees from 7-11. Seems like an easy one!  We need to pick up some cards so we may do that first and then get the Slurpees.

Of course, if the boys want to go swimming, we’ll do that!

Working On The Summer Bucket List

While waiting on the a/c repairman to show, I started working on one of my summer bucket list items. Taking inventory of the dish cloths and kitchen towels.

The oil diffuser is spewing out lavender, peppermint, and lemon. (run it more, one of the other items on the list)

I’m tackling my list in bits and pieces working around my work schedule. Perhaps, I’ll update the list at the end of July.

A Song For Summer With Two Teenagers

This song popped into my head today. Last summer, J wanted to fun stuff with me still and G sometimes went along with things. This summer, not so much.  They both want to do their own thing more often than they want to do anything with me.

Time to start figuring out a new kind of summer. I know we’ll still have fun and do fun stuff but it will just look different.  Finding myself thankful for my job with preschool kids where I can still be thought of as fun (sometimes).

What’s going on in your world on this Wednesday?

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