Trick or Treat🎃

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

It's the most wonderful time of the year... I start planning for Halloween early and every year I declare it to be the best one yet. Last night, was no exception...our little ankle-biting vampires were frightfully gorgeous and had the best time!


I hope these girls carry on the tradition of making the most out of Halloween every year. Look at these precious kiddos!!! Ash lives on Main Street of our hometown, so we planned on making being at her house the main event. I dressed up a little, brought almost all of my decorations, and made AN AMAZING PLAYLIST that is so fun I can't stop listening to it!!

Naiya is on steroids right now, which makes her emotionally volatile, and the chemo wears her out, so we didn't even attempt to go far from the house, yet she was already worn out before we got back. She was very content to hand out handfuls of candy, despite my desperate pleas to just give one piece so we didn't run out! We did run out...twice...but a candy run to the good ole' Dollar Store remedied the situation before any kiddos had to be turned away.



Girls, every year on this day you have made me the happiest I think I have ever been in my life. I do not stop smiling at the three of you. I will never forget the magic of Halloween with you. It was great when Dylan was small, too, but you three together just amplifies how sweet it can be when fate delivers you a triple-dose of love & giggles.



I was dancing to the aforementioned AMAZING PLAYLIST and smiling and handing out candy and wishing the kiddos a Happy Halloween and in my ideal version of the afterlife, we are all doing this every single night.

I already can't wait for next year!! Happy Halloween, everybody!

Wednesday

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Naiya came to play with us today! The Kindred/Naiya dynamic is decidedly different from the Kindred/Nova and the Naiya/Nova dynamic. Nova is such an agreeable little sweetheart and can get along with pretty much anybody. As a study in contrast, Kindred feels very strongly about almost everything and expresses it very loudly if she feels like she isn't being heard.

Every day is Hollywood here and Kindred is both the director and the leading actress. According to my Granddaddy, I was the same way. We played The Waltons and he was John-Boy and I was Jenny and I told him everything to do and say. Bless his patient heart.

Naiya doesn't want to be bossed and expresses that very loudly, too. Since she was the baby, by a whole year, we always urged the girls to let her have her way because she didn't understand how to play like they did yet. So, Naiya was used to getting what she wanted almost anytime she wanted it. And, then she got sick...which means we all bent over backwards to ensure she kept a smile on her face. The result of all of that is we now have two very strong personalities who are sure they are the star of the show.

You got about 30 mins tops before the claws come out, folks...


Absence quickly makes the heart grow fonder, and they are still able to rebound and continue playing together, luckily nobody is holding any grudges. So, every time they hear the other is en route for a playdate, they get super excited. It's just so great to have Naiya back with us now. We are counting our blessings for sure!!

Pumpkin Patch

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Lucky for us, a pumpkin patch is within close proximity to my mama's house. We've watched as it first opened, added fun things for kiddos, and expanded into a bustling local agro-tourism location.

For mama's birthday this year, she requested that all grandgirls join her for pumpkin pickin' at Just Piddlin'. For the first time since Nova started Kindergarten, all the girls seemed healthy. (Seemed is the operative word, as a cold/cough spread thru the trio within 48 hours afterward.) It was a bit of a cousin reunion. They've seen each other individually, but this was the first time all three were together in what seems like forever. We soaked it all up.



Where does the time go? Seems like just yesterday I brought her here toddling around on two unsteady legs. In this pic, I can see how she favors me...but, most of the time I think she looks like her daddy.


Can you believe she just turned 60 yesterday? My mama is gorgeous.


It is so so so good to have her here with us again. Back to adventuring as a trio, as it should be.

Copycat Autumn Squash Soup

Sunday, October 21, 2018

My favorite soup at Panera Bread is the Autumn Squash, so naturally I tried the best copycat recipe I could find. The result is amazingly close! It is slightly less sweet, so add a little more honey if you need it as sweet as PB. I don't, so it was absolutely perfect for me! I'd also use an onion on the smaller side. Mine was a good sized onion and it came out just a hint of too much onion.

Here is the recipe via Fakeginger.com:

Ingredients
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 1 onion diced
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 6 cups cubed butternut squash
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup apple juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • pumpkin seeds for serving
Instructions
  1. In a large soup pot, heat coconut oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is soft and translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add butternut squash, pumpkin puree, vegetarian broth, apple juice, honey, curry powder, cinnamon, and salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover and lower to a simmer. Cook about 15 minutes, until the butternut squash is fork tender. Use an immersion blender or a regular blender to blend in batches until smooth. Transfer back to the pot and stir in heavy cream. Heat through.
  3. Garnish with pumpkin seeds before serving.

If you whip a batch up, let me know how it was!

Returning

Thursday, October 18, 2018

I present an argument for an immediate collective return to blogging...

When it first started, blogging was a medium which allowed us to find & forge connections with our soul-sisters who weren't conveniently located nearby. I loved reading what life was like for mamas on the sunny west coast, high in the mountains, way out in the desert, and even anchored in the bay. In the morning, I would get my coffee ready as the computer booted up (ha! remember THOSE days!?) and then I'd sit down at my desk to read the offerings from the minds & hearts of friends. Back then, there were some popular blogs who remind me now of the polished Instagram 'influencer' accounts...and those weren't for me. I preferred the writings of those who were in the trenches of motherhood alongside me, and weren't afraid to share about leaky breasts, strong-willed children, working husbands, and a feeling that maybe who we are gets lost under all the hats we must wear to the keep the circus going.

But, somewhere along the way...we phased out sharing our days. Blogs that I used to adore were abandoned, quietly. A post here and there until...nothing. Facebook became the way we stayed in touch until Instagram came along and many bloggers utilized it as a replacement. Facebook became a community that I felt uncomfortable belonging to, so I left it. And, I don't miss it even a tiny bit. For me, it was a drain on my time and energy. Lately, Instagram has started to feel the same way. Content is curated and branding/marketing is rampant. Connection is fading, just as before with blogging.

I am going to try to keep my little blog alive. If you want to come along, there is a"Subscribe" box on the sidebar and posts will be sent straight to your Inbox. My goal is to post 2-3 times weekly and add a sidebar link list of interesting blogs who are still out there sharing magic with us so that you can check them out too. I hope to see you writing!

DOOMED TO FIRE

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Kindred has a very theatrical mastery of our language. The things that come out of her mouth are not quite what you expect to hear from a 4 year old. This morning, she announced that her throat felt doomed to fire. I took a peek and then felt some swelling in her lymph nodes, so off to the nurse practitioner we went. She was positive for strep so after some good ole' Western meds in the form of antibiotics, she will be back to her usual quirky little self.

In the meantime, send some good energy her way. Thanks, friends!