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I am savoring the last of the Apple Slump. This dessert was really a hit. I love that Grace picked it out and helped make it. I'm hoping it becomes a Thanksgiving tradition for us.


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We have developed a new Sunday morning ritual... swimming. There is a local hotel that lets the public use the pool for a small fee. And so far, every Sunday we have had the place to ourselves. Jackson (being the cold-blooded baby that he is) usually spends most of his time playing in the (bathtub temperature) hot tub. Which is fine by me since I'm a little cold-blooded myself. Grace and Ryan are always a little more daring... jumping straight into the pool. But in any case it is always an hour or two of pure family sillyness and fun. A nice way to start our Sunday.



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So in the end, we concluded it was a success. Good food, and good times with family. And I am so grateful for all of it.


The Preparations...

I have a lot of pictures from our holiday, so I've divided them up into two posts. First, the preparations...

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Made the place settings.

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Made the candle for the centerpiece.

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These beautiful flowers were delivered from Ryan's mom and Scott.

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Katie arrived (just in time to save my sanity I think as Ryan was still at work during all this Thanksgiving Eve preparing). And we started baking... beginning with "Apple Slump" a recipe Grace had picked out from her favorite Thanksgiving book.

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Thanksgiving morning- just out of bed- Grace and I started to make the pies (I know it's a blurring picture but I had to post it since it's a memory I don't want to forget).

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The day seemed to be filled with kitchen food preparations- luckily, I love this.

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There also seemed to be a lot of trips to the store. The very last trip Katie made, just hours before everyone else arrived, in pursuit of a table cloth. Mission accomplished.

I do love the getting ready part, although I have to admit, I had my stressful moments. When I was growing up "getting ready" for things, even fun things, and especially big things, was usually very exciting, but also very stressful. I'm trying to work on that about myself- nixing that stressful part. Especially if the getting ready is for something fun, like a holiday. So I practiced letting go... and was successful at times, and unsuccessful at others. Baby steps I guess. But I am happy to say that regardless of that, I do have many happy memories of the preparations to look back on. And for that I am very thankful.



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We are heavy into Thanksgiving planning around here. Meal planning, recipe talk (with my sis of course), place setting ideas, decorations (especially ones from nature) activities (so far we have a puzzle table and popcorn stringing)... I love holidays and all the excitement and preparations that go into them. It is also really fun to have Grace old enough to take part in it. Last year we had Thanksgiving here but it was kind of by default. This year, however, seems to be more intentional, maybe the beginning of a new family tradition? I can't say for sure but I know I'm enjoying every minute of it. Envisioning all the people that I love cozied up in my house with full bellies pleases me to no end.


Dress Up

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Grace has really started to get into dress up these days... which means Jackson's of course in it too. For Christmas this year I went to the Goodwill the day after Halloween and bought a ton of costumes, hats, and dress up clothes for half off (half off the already ridiculously low Goodwill prices that is). It was so much fun to buy... but I'm even more excited to give it to them. They are going to be in dress up heaven.

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Oh... Now I Get It

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I've tried knitting many times over the last several years. I always thought it wasn't for me. I couldn't seem to get the hang of it. Plus it just seemed like everything took so long to make. But I think I finally get it, and I get it. I finally have the hang of it, plus, I understand why people like it so much. Once you have it down, it's kind of addicting. And unlike sewing, you can do it anywhere. Like for example, at the park, while your kids play. Yep, I definately get it... and I love it.

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8 Things To Do When You Get Up At 5am

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1. Watch the sunrise.

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2. Make pumpkin muffins (for the second time this week).

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3. Take pictures.

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4. Drink tea.

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5. Go back to bed.

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6. Read.

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7. Find inspiration (this from "The Parent's Tao Te Ching").

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8. Clean (or find someone who will).


Nature Center

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This morning we woke up and came here for a monthly class called "Acorn Adventures". Very fun. The class uses songs, stories, art and a hike through the forest to spark a love and interest in nature. The forest there is really beautiful and surrounds a bog (which is always interesting to children). I think they both loved it... we'll definitely return next month.