Wednesday, October 26, 2016

What's Up Wednesday

 October was a crazy busy, all over the place kind of month.  We had a lot of fun, but I can honestly say that I am not sad to see it go.

Since today is the last Wednesday of the month, I'm linking up with Shay, Mel & Sheaffer to share what we've been up to in October.

What we're eating this week

 Chicken Teriyaki Stir fry,
Beef Stew...
And I have no idea what else.  I'm going to have to just wing it the rest of the week.

What I'm reminiscing about

I guess I'm reminiscing about Decembers.  I'm sooo ready to turn on Christmas movies, wrap presents, bake goodies, listen to Christmas songs, and just hang out at home with my family.   I'm ready, but I'll be holding back until after Thanksgiving.   If I can't have hot summer days, I want cozy days at home.  Anyone else with me on this?

What I'm loving

 I'm loving that I got some sweet time to hang out with my youngest niece.  Every Auntie needs time to bond with her niece's and nephews. 

Emma loves babies just as much as her Mama.  :)

What we've been up to

Running kids here and there... it's been a little bit nuts.  I can say that I survived my first season with having a kid in High School sports.  Nothing like having games hours away on school nights and not getting home until midnight to get you initiated.  ;)

Earlier in month, I got to go down to New Orleans with my Mom & my sister Lindy.  Here we are celebrating my 34th birthday, and wishing my other 2 siblings were there as well.

We visited a plantation.
We went out on the swamp to visit the alligators...
We even got daring and tried alligator meat.
You can read more about our trip here & here.  We had so much fun.

What I'm dreading

In my mind I'm dreading the cold weather... but I'm going to try really hard not to complain about being cold this year.  I'm going to play the "glad game."

What I'm working on

 Planning Jesse's birthday and making plans for Thanksgiving.  I don't care for Halloween at all... so I'm waiting anxiously for Thanksgiving to kick off the Holiday season.

What I'm excited about

 Our Thanksgiving plans will be a bit different this year, and my crew is all very excited.  :)
We usually go up to Kalispell each year on Thanksgiving to visit family.  This year Dan's parent's are going to be down in Palm Springs, so... we've booked our tickets and will spend Thanksgiving down in sunny California.  We won't be able to take a Spring break this school year, so this will be a nice time to get to do something fun with the kids.

What I'm watching/reading

I haven't even tried to start watching anything new yet.  I really need to figure out how to talk Dan into getting Netflix.  I think I'd rather watch a series on there, than have to wait to watch my show each week... I don't claim to be that patient.  ;)

Right now I'm in the middle of this book.
So far, so good. 

What I'm listening to

As I type this, my house is quiet except for the sounds of my laundry running in the other room, and the typing on my keyboard.  So peaceful.

What I'm wearing

 Layers upon layers, upon layers.  It's been rainy and in the 40's & 50's here.

What I'm doing this weekend

I don't remember the last time we had a weekend at home.  Dan and I both have a list of things we'd like to check off of our "to do list" and then we'll go to Church on Sunday... but otherwise our weekend looks to be wide open.  I would love to have time to watch a movie with the kids or play a game of cards.  I'm going to do my best to just enjoy it, and not over plan.  Don't be surprised if you stop over and I'm in my comfy clothes.  It's just that kind of a weekend.

What I'm looking forward to next month

I'm doing my happy dance that I don't have a lot planned for next month.  We'll have a few things here and there, but hopefully things won't be too crazy.  Is it sad that, that's what I'm really looking forward to?!

What else is new

Nothing much.  Which is exactly the way I want it right now.  :)

What's new with you guys?


Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Wednesday Morning Ramblings

Good morning!  I'm here with a hot cup of coffee and some Wednesday morning ramblings. I have been slacking on posting this week, all because I just can't think of a single thing to blog about.
I have books I want to share, but I need to finish reading them first.  I'm in the middle of 2 at the moment.  I don't usually read 2 books at once, because I'm bound to get the stories all mixed up.  With these 2, one is fiction and the other is 21 stories told by former slaves.  Definitely can't get these 2 books mixed up.  I'll let you know what I think when I'm done.

Soccer is over for the season, and Gracie's last game is supposed to be tomorrow evening.  Then my dear friends... I am going to celebrate!  I'm ready for all of my people to come home after school and for us to not have anywhere we need to be.  I'm hoping books, puzzles, board games, cards and movies are in our near future.

I've ordered my Christmas cards, plus started my Christmas shopping online.  If feels so good to know that things are getting checked off.

This morning the girls and I were in the kitchen and Gracie brought up the fact that it's almost Jesse's birthday.  She mentioned that he was going to be 12.  I looked back at her and asked, "Isn't he already 12?"    For the record he is 11.  Whoops!  I'm blaming it all on our busy schedule, and telling myself that I still have it all together and that I'm not getting old and forgetful.

 I hope you're all having a great week!  Today is our last day of school for the week and then we get a 4 day weekend!  So really, today is my Friday!  :)

 Wishing you all a Friday on a Wednesday as well.


Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday Favorites

Some Friday's are just better than others, and this is one of the better ones.  Not because of any big thing we are doing... but because we are all home.  Over the last 4 weeks, Dan has been gone for part of 3 of them, and I was gone for the 1.  It's been madness.  Now that all of my people are home, I just want to relax and enjoy our weekend together.

To celebrate that it's Friday, I'm sharing a few of my favorites.
Being in 90 degree weather with humidity over 90% is my favorite!  It was also a favorite of mine to cool off in this fun little pool on the rooftop of our hotel.  Not a bad set up at all.  ;)  To read about our recent trip to New Orleans you can check it out here, and here.

Gracie made me this horseshoe with an 'M' for Mom, in her industrial arts class.  Isn't it cool!  I can't wait to see what else she makes.

We are into our third week of our Daniel Bible study and I couldn't be happier to be back studying with a great group of women.  The timing is so good to be back in the word, as this week has been a huge struggle.  Nothing like scripture to put me back together and remind me that God's got this, and that He knows.

 I've downloaded these games onto my iPad and they are fun!  If you are needing a couple of new apps, I would recommend these.   I'm not much of a TV fan, so when I get a bit of down time I'm usually either reading or playing one of these games.

I picked this shirt up at Athleta a month or so ago, and have now just been wearing it, and it's definitely a favorite of mine.  It is sooo soft and comfy.  Mine looks longer than in this picture... I wear mine with skinny jeans and black boots.  It's going to be perfect for these long cold months.

That's all I've got today for Friday favorites.
Linking up again with Andrea, Erika & Narci.

Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

New Orleans: Second Half of The Trip

If you missed reading about the first half of my trip down to New Orleans, click here, to get all caught up.  Today I'm sharing the last couple of days spent down there.

On Thursday, Lindy and I headed out to the Houmas House Plantation and Gardens.

The grounds and the house were beautiful, but if you are wanting the history to go along with it, I'd skip this tour.  There were a few portraits on the walls, and I asked if they were the owners or family members of the home... hoping to learn more about the families that owned the plantation.  My guide told me, "We don't actually know who these people are... but you could name them if you'd like."  Then she went on to tell us what she likes to call each of them.  They were just random portraits that the owners had picked up to decorate the walls.  The whole tour was just strange like that.  The current owner actually lives in the house, and we walked through his room, as well as was shown pictures of his dogs wedding.  Yep, his dogs got married and the tour guide showed us pictures.  Like I said, the grounds and the house were beautiful, but I wouldn't spend the time or money on this tour again. 

If you are ever down that way and are wanting to take a legit tour of a plantation, I would highly recommend Oak Alley & the Laura plantation.  We saw both of these the first time we went down to New Orleans, and they did not disappoint.

On Friday, Lindy and I headed out on a swamp tour.

Our guide would throw out marshmallows to the alligators, and they would swim right up.  I guess the marshmallows resemble eggs, which interests them so much.

 Creepy... it looks like a mix between a snake and a dinosaur.

 Our tour guide.

This guy really leaped up when offered a hot dog.  Yikes!

As crazy as this swamp area is, there's also a real beauty to it as well.

After a day of alligators, we grabbed lunch at Felipe's.  A fun place to eat if you want good and quick Mexican food.  Then we all met back up at the pool on the rooftop of our hotel.  It was so nice!  Much different than the cold and snow we are seeing in Montana.

We cleaned up and went to dinner.  They let me pick where we wanted to eat, since it was my birthday on Friday.  Such a fun way to spend the day.

 Saturday morning we were up bright and early in order to be at the airport at 6:00.  We stopped in a little cafe and had breakfast, and then found seats in our terminal.  I was giving the big thumbs down because there wasn't a single coffee shop in the whole terminal.  What the heck?

 Denver however did not disappoint.  I not only found myself a Starbucks, but I got to have my first salted caramel mocha of the season!  I didn't even think about them being back in season, since I don't get the chance to swing through very often.  You can only imagine my delight!

On the plane headed back home with my coffee and book... a perfect way to end the trip.

It's good to be home.

Monday, October 10, 2016

New Orleans

  I hope you all had a great week, last week.  I was in New Orleans with my mom and sister Lindy... which is why it was so quiet over here on my blog.  We flew out Tuesday morning and got back home Saturday evening.  It was the perfect amount of time to be gone.  Long enough to feel refreshed, but also long enough to be ready to get back home to my family.

My Mom had an Expo to attend, and Lindy and I decided to tag along.  After all, we couldn't let her go to New Orleans by herself.  ;)
 Early morning shuttle to the airport... do we look tired or what!

A few hours later, we were in a cab enjoying the New Orleans heat with the windows rolled down.

Hot humid weather just makes me happy!

We checked into our hotel, and they recommended eating down the street at Mothers.  The three of us shared this, and dug right into the creole cooking.
The food was good.  I haven't had much southern cooking but it seemed authentic.

 The rest of the day was spent walking around the French Quarter, listening to jazz and relaxing.

The next day, Mom headed to her expo and Lindy and I boarded a steam boat and headed down the Mighty Mississippi to the site of the Battle of New Orleans.
We were having fun, just missing our other two siblings.

 The Andrew Jackson Monument.

These cannon balls were heavy!

  It's so crazy looking out at this field.  I can picture all the soldiers, the cannons, the smoke.  I was never big into history as a kid, but the older I get the more I'm finding that I love it!

Back on the boat, and I couldn't get over how dirty the Mississippi river looked.

Our view headed back to the city.

Once we got back into New Orleans, we had lunch and then headed over to the World War II Museum.  It's huge!  There were 4 different buildings that were 2 or 3 floors each.  We walked quickly through it and even that took us 3 hours.  We could have easily stayed and looked around for a couple full days.  We had no idea it was so big.  
Our whole mission on this trip was to find Lindy's husbands, grandfather's fuselage that he was in during the war.
Found him.

And standing just outside of where he sat.  I was so excited that she got a chance to take pictures back home for his family to see.  So fun!

 After leaving the museum, we picked up Mom and headed down to dinner on Bourbon Street.

 The cab driver recommended the Red Fish Grill and it was good!!!
This is Alligator Boudin Balls.  It was definitely outside of my comfort zone, but I've learned to be a lot less picky.  It was 40% alligator, and then the rest I think was pork or chicken?  It tasted like a really good meatloaf.

My BBQ chicken with a pickled coleslaw over potato salad.

And our fun chocolate bread pudding.

I'll share the next couple of days of our trip tomorrow.  I took way too many pictures for one post.  Bless you if you actually made it through the end of this one.  I could have skipped a few of the details, but I wanted to make sure I documented it, so we can look back on this trip of ours, years from now.

Be blessed,