We had the most fun and exhausting weekend! The weather was near perfection and the kids were in great spirits all weekend. It was the perfect formula for all that we had planned to do. Friday was Michael's birthday so we ate out as a family of 4 at our local hometown diner. We haven't ate out much since Haley came along but it went surprisingly well. This was great considering the only empty table was in the very middle of the restaurant so we were totally on display. But it all went good and Haley stayed amused through the whole thing and was content to stay in her seat.
Saturday we headed with some friends to a big pumpkin patch and farm in Springfield, TN. We went to the same place last year and there is just a TON of stuff for the kids to do. It's a long drive for us but it's totally worth it! Jonah surprised us both by wanting to do so much more stuff this year than he did last year. He was not concerned about the crowds or anything this time and the other kids that went with us were all his age so they could do lots of things together.
Miss Haley was so good for us all day. She missed her morning nap (but rested on ride up) and had to hang out in the stroller all day but she was a dream! She never fussed once and just enjoyed getting pushed around the farm and seeing all the kids running around.
This place has a huge sand pit that is full of diggers and trucks. It is a little boy's paradise. I think Jonah could have stayed right there all day if we had let him.
We got a couple of shots with the kids. They did good for mine but something caught their attention in Daddy's photo. LOL
They also have this giant inflated balloon-type thing that the kids could run up on and jump around. They called is corn popper. Jonah loved that this year and went all by himself (last year Michael went with him).
Jonah with his buddies Briley and Neely.
Jonah rode behind the 4-wheeler once too! He said it was really bumpy.
After lunch Haley started fading fast and fell asleep. We bumped our way back to the car and she stayed asleep the whole way home. I just had to get a picture of her cute little booties, too!
After we all rested for an hour or so we decided to head back out to Piney campground in Land Between the Lakes area to visit with my in-laws who were camping down there. They also were having their trick-or-treating at the campground so we took along Jonah's costume so he could trick-or-treat a little bit.
My MIL, Dee and the kids at Piney.
Jonah hitting up a nice lady handing out candy.
He wanted his picture taken with the black cat in the background.
Sunday we went to church and then came home and made a big pot of chilli for Michael's birthday celebration (really just supper at our house and a bonfire). We had family over and enjoyed chilli with all the fixings, my Mom made Mexican cornbread and my Dad made smoked bologna. We all ate outside by a fire and then enjoyed some delicious carrot cake that I ordered especially for him. It was a nice relaxing evening spent catching up with family. A great way to start the week!
Our church has the young kids "adopt" an older member and we give them little gifts or do something nice for them. We try to keep things going fairly regularly for them and a lot of the members happen to also be widows. We set a small dollar limit for the gifts so I ran down to my local Dollar General store to see what I might could get our lady. They had some really nice throw blankets that I imagined she could throw over her shoulders or use on the extra cool nights. I am not sure if she likes to do puzzles but this book of puzzles was on clearance and then I picked up a simple frame and printed out a free fall printable. (If you want to know where I got it just let me know) Then I just wrapped it all up in a bow and will add a tag later.
I think this would be an easy gift for an elderly person. Something they can use (blanket), something they can do (word puzzles) and something they can enjoy in their home (framed print). I hope she enjoys it and is able to use it.
Admittedly, I am not a big Halloween decorator. I never decorated for the holiday at all before we had kids and we were married and had a home for 5 years before we had Jonah. It was not a holiday that my parents decorated for very much either. Now that Jonah is older and gets into the holidays more, I am enjoying adding a little touch of spooky to our house...in a cutesy kind of spooky!
Sidebar: When I was in elementary school my Dad (who loved woodworking) cut some really huge pumpkins out of plywood and my Mom (who was very crafty) painted them each with a face. They were literally taller than me and they would put them out in our front yard (which was really open and big) as their fall/Halloween decor. Everyone loved them and us kids thought they were so cool. My Dad (who is also an electrician) would set up a spotlight for nighttime too!
Think something like the picture below but on a larger scale and with plywood with hand painted faces. I got this from Pinterest.
I wish I still had them to use in my yard now! But back to my Halloween decorations. I just decorate my white hutch in the living room and add a few pumpkins and a wreath to the door and call it good. Most everything I used this year is stuff I've had for a couple of years but I did buy the black, spooky tree at a barn sale this year for $12. I love it so! I may add some small ornaments to it...or not.
Do you decorate much for Halloween or just for Fall?
I have slowly been updating some of our furniture that we've had since we got married. We bought a brand new living room set while we were engaged and the end tables are still in excellent condition. However, I was growing tired of all the brown in our living room. The carpet is brown and we now have a dark brown leather sectional. So I decided to paint the end tables white and distress them to give it some contrast. I already had just enough of my Annie Sloan chalk paint in Pure White to do the job. Then I got some new pulls from Hobby Lobby to match the pulls on the white hutch in our living room that I painted a couple of years ago. I really love how the chalk paint adheres without any prep and I applied the wax with my new wax brush and it went so much quicker!
This was one of the end tables BEFORE. Still in excellent shape but just outdated and boring.
This was during the painting process....and below is the AFTER!
Now I'm thinking I need some different lamps with more color. It's funny how one change just brings around more changes that you think you need. :)
We had a great Fall weekend! On Saturday we had family pictures taken and all I can say about that is I hope we have one good picture. Haley was not having any part of cooperating with us. We had a big cold front move in on Friday and it was cool on Saturday morning and very windy. I think she just didn't like the cold and being out in the wind. It was a very brief shoot. OH well that is how it goes with kids...you can prep and coordinate outfits but you cannot control how they will do when the time comes for the pictures. LOL
Saturday afternoon I got to head off to a Barn Sale in town with my Mom, sister-in-law and friend. I got some goodies and had a big time shopping sans kids. LOL
So on Sunday we had our annual Fun Day with our church friends at a member's home. These folks are always so gracious and hospitable to open up their home and land for us to all enjoy. We had 3 inflatables, corn hole and horse shoe tournaments, a corn crib, hay ride, pumpkin decorating, FOOD and a devotional all in one day. In Jonah's words toward the end of the day "best day ever!"
Here are some of the pictures I got. (Haley left early to take a nap at Nana's house so we could stay and play with Jonah some more. Thanks Nana!!)
Charlie (the homeowner) made this corn crib from hay bales and corn (he harvests a lot of corn on his farm) for the kids to play in. I think he originally made it for some of the smaller kids to play in but turns out the bigger teenage kids were in it most of the day. LOL
Jonah wore himself out on the inflatables. He played in them all day long. He just kept going and going like the energizer bunny.
This was one of the larger inflatables that had a bouncer and a slide. There was an obstacle course one too.
The back of their house where we all hung out and ate.
Charlie knows how to do a hayride with this set up!
The homeowners have 3 girls (adult twins and a senior in high school) and they all love riding horses. This is their beautiful horse barn down behind their house. Below is their youngest daughter that gave rides to the little kids on her horse. It was Jonah's first time to ride a horse too!
View from the road of their beautiful home! Country living at it's finest.
Jonah's decorated pumpkin.
A cute little piggy.
View from back of the house of their bull "Bruno" that came up to visit.
The young men in our congregation did the evening devotional and decided to use 3 haybales stacked up as their pulpit. :)