I am long overdue for a little life update here on the blog. Since school started back in August, it’s been hard to get into a steady writing routine. My daily schedule has been broken up from what it was normally and I find less time to myself to be productive, and most days that looks like grocery shopping, laundry or cleaning, projects around the house, appointments, or running other errands. It’s harder for me to find the time to sit down and write because unfortunately, it’s usually last on my to-do list.
I’m happy to have found a bit of time today while the girls are at school to sit behind the computer and share what’s been going on over here the last month.
October was a record breaker in Alabama for the most drastic change in temperatures. We started the month with a heat advisory and 100 degree temps and ended it on Halloween night close to freezing. While I was wishing it wasn’t quite so cold on Halloween so that the girls could be more comfortable in their costumes, I am welcoming the winter-like weather with open arms.
Over fall break, we made a road trip to Illinois with David’s family to visit his Grandpa, aunt and uncle. It was a long drive (about 10 hours after stops) but the girls did surprisingly well. They actually did better on that 10 hour trip than they did on our 3.5 hour trip to Atlanta this past weekend (we’ll take what we can get). While I’m not the biggest fan of screen time, having a car DVD player for them to watch movies and keep them entertained is a big exception to the rule.
Grandpa was in a Bounce Back rehab facility while we were there, recovering from a recent hospital visit, so we didn’t get to spend as much time with him as we would have liked, but it was still lovely to see him. This was our first taste of the cold, since at this point it had not cooled off in Alabama yet, and we all had fun playing outside and the girls enjoyed “climbing” the trees behind Grandpa’s house.
There was a fun street festival going on in a few towns in the area, so I took the girls to a couple of those with David’s sister Lindsey and “Baby Bailey.” They loved visiting the Walnut Grove Farm and their petting zoo. They also got to ride a horse, which they were thrilled about. They still ask me when we can go back and ride the horse again.
On the third Saturday in October, David and I were thrilled to get a spontaneous kid free weekend. In Alabama, the third Saturday in October means Alabama plays Tennessee, and we were so grateful that we got the chance to go this year! David’s parents have season tickets and they weren’t able to go to the Tennessee game, so they let us use them. My parents were heading to Kentucky to visit family that weekend and asked if we wanted them to take the girls with them so they could see their cousins and we excitedly said yes!
The game against Tennessee was at 8:00pm, which meant we didn’t leave the stadium until midnight and didn’t get home until around 3am. That’s the latest we’ve stayed up for a very, very long time! It was a great game though, and the weather was perfect, besides a little drizzle during the day. It was fun to eat lunch at Mugshots (favorite!), and roam the campus before heading to the stadium.
I was a little bummed that we didn’t get to do a family pumpkin patch trip this year. I got to go with Raley’s class field trip, but with all the traveling and the scorching heat at the beginning of the month, we didn’t find a time to get out there as a family. One day after I picked up Audrey from school and before Raley’s school let out, I took her down to Isom’s orchard to help me pick out some pumpkins for our house and get an apple cider slushy. They also have a small little tractor trailer filled with corn for kids to play in, which she enjoyed, while I scanned every pumpkin there trying to figure out the best ones to stack up by our door (OCD problems).
Raley’s pumpkin patch field trip was originally scheduled for the beginning of October, but the state issued a heat advisory for the day we were supposed to go and the school (thankfully) changed our date. I’m so glad because we had perfect weather the day we went. I had a great time seeing Raley with her friends and also getting to know some of the other moms. Raley wanted me right there with her the entire time, and wanted me to sit with her at lunch, and it made me wonder how much longer this will last. In the next year or two, it will probably turn to “I don’t want you to come on my field trip” and “don’t sit with me, I want to sit with my friends.” I’m happy to hold onto this for a little bit longer.
Raley’s field trip ended up being rescheduled for the same day as Audrey’s Halloween party at her school, so we ended up having to divide and conquer and David went with Audrey to her party. This stage is tough when they’re not at the same school and on the same schedule.
One Halloween event that we have enjoyed in the past is the Halloween Bash that the Earlyworks Family of Museums puts on every year. We all have a great time going around Earlyworks, playing games and getting candy. This year Raley decided she wanted to be Jasmine and Audrey wanted to be Poppy. I’m a huge fan of family costumes, so I was a little bummed to not be able to do that this year, but they’re kids and they should be able to be what they want to be! They’ve already talked about being the Sanderson sisters next year, so we’ll see if they stick to that!
Lindsey and Brian had a wedding to go to one Saturday evening, and when they asked if we could babysit Bailey, we quickly said YES! I was very excited to get to snuggle a baby for an evening and the girls adore her! They are both so sweet with babies, especially Raley. She would sit there in Bailey’s face and entertain her all evening if she could.
On the Sunday before Halloween was our trunk or treat at our church. I ended up coming down with some sort of stomach bug that day and I was so bummed to have to miss it! David took the girls and they still had a great time. My parents decorated the back of their car like Candyland and the pictures were so cute. They did a great job.
Halloween was a soggy, rainy, cold day, but thankfully it stopped raining by evening and we were able to get out and do some trick-or-treating. Every year for Halloween I make some sort of soup in the crockpot, my parents come over and eat before going out, and they help pass out candy while we walk around the neighborhood. I also like to have something warm ready for us when we come back. This year I put some apple cider in a crockpot with salted caramel, which was perfect for when we needed to warm up after being out in the cold.
We walked halfway around the neighborhood, came back to the house, dropped off our candy and warmed up for a minute, then hit the rest of the houses. This was our first time trick-or-treating in our new neighborhood, and we had a great time. We actually bumped into a couple people that we know who we had no idea lived here! I am very excited about this little community of ours. There are lots of families with young kids, and I’m excited for what the future holds here.
I’ll wrap up this post with a fun little girls’ trip with a group of ladies from church. This trip started out as a Christmas shopping trip, but we all sort of agreed we didn’t care much about shopping, we just needed a quick getaway, and it was just what the doctor ordered. We stayed overnight in Franklin, TN, ate some delicious food, explored downtown Franklin, and laughed more than we probably have in a long time. I’m thankful for this group of friends, old and new.
I hope you’re having a good Wednesday, and I hope to hop on here a little more frequently. I have more to share, but other priorities get in the way sometimes! My love of reading has been rekindled since my trip to New York back in September, and I plan to share what I’ve been reading lately here soon. I’ve been reading at record speed for me, so you know that means they’re good books!