Thursday, October 27, 2016

"Handy" Halloween Snack

Are you stressing because Halloween's in just a few days and you don't have anything for your child's school or that costume party you got invited to? These "handy" snacks are just the thing that will make it seem like you totally have your life together without actually having to have your life together. And don't we all need that.

Bonus? No cooking, baking, or refrigeration required which is always a plus when taking things to a party.

What You'll Need:
Latex free plastic gloves (I got mine from Walmart)
Popcorn (You can pop your own or use Smart Pop or even Pirate's Booty)
Candy Corn
Twine or Ribbon
Plastic Halloween Rings 

What You Do:
1. Place a candy corn point down in each finger hole of the glove.
2. Fill the glove with 2 handfuls of popcorn then crush it a little, and shake the glove so the popcorn falls down the finger holes.
3. Fill the rest of the glove with popcorn leaving enough free space to tie the glove shut.
4. Tie the glove opening with baker's twine.
5. Place the ring on one of the fingers (I cut the ring on the back to make it easier to put on the glove and kids will still be able to wear them)

Now turn on Hocus Pocus, grab a glass of wine, and get to work.
Monday, October 24, 2016

Weekend Recap

I'm finishing up this post while I wait for the season premiere of The Walking Dead and I can hardly contain my excitement. I don't think I've ever been more excited/nervous for the premiere of a show ever. 
[Edited to add: So intense.]

Besides anxiously awaiting TWD, our weekend was filled with a parade, a visit to the pumpkin patch, and the usual cleaning plus a little organization. If you follow me on Instagram you saw that I started the weekend on Friday afternoon by doing a little team building activity with my students on a ropes course/zip line.
It ended up being a ton of fun and I'm so proud of them for pushing past their fears and trying something new. Man am I sore though. 

Saturday morning we were up bright and early for the Homecoming parade followed by lunch 
with my mother-in-law.

The boys went home with grandma and were planning on staying the night, but Jack missed his momma too much so I picked them up and we had a quiet night at home. After the boys went to bed I finally watched Me Before You. You guys. I have never bawled as much in a movie as I did during this one. Like full on crying, puffy eyes, snot, the works. Tell me I'm not the only one. I'm so glad I didn't end up seeing this in the theatre cause that would have been real embarrassing.

On Sunday I got the boys' closets switched over for Winter and deep cleaned Ben's bathroom which required more Clorox Wipes than I care to admit. Jack insisted on vacuuming his room and who am I to deprive him?

Later that afternoon we headed to the pumpkin patch where we all slightly sweated since temperatures were in the 80's and we clearly did not dress for it. None the less, it was a great time and  I got this adorable picture of the boys out of it.

We took full advantage of the warm weather and threw some steaks on the grill for dinner, put the kids down for bed, and then J and I cheers'd another great weekend with an adult beverage.

Linking up with Biana for Weekending.
Friday, October 14, 2016

Friday, Friday

Anyone else feel like this week dragged on?? We have absolutely nothing on the calendar and I couldn't be more excited! I'm linking up with ChristinaAmandaKarli, & Erika to bring you my 5 things this Friday.

 I went to a local nursery and stocked up on some mums for the front porch and it took everything in me not to take this giant 5 foot elephant home as well. A girl can dream right? 

Ben's school had their fall festival last Friday night and they ended the night with a huge fireworks display. The company who did the show also happens to be one of my husband's clients and Ben thought that was so cool. I'm wondering how the PTA is going to top this next year.

My good friends had their second baby and I took them lunch which really just gave me an excuse to love on their sweet boy while they ate. He is so precious and so tiny. He also has a big brother who is the best.

After years of wanting to go apple picking we finally went last weekend. Honestly, it wasn't as much fun as I thought it would be and there were SO many bees! I've never heard anyone talk about how many bees there are at apple orchards but apparently it's thing and bees love apples. Am I the only one who didn't know this?

The husband and I finally decided where we'll be going for our anniversary this spring and despite my strong urging and begging to go to Banff or Hawaii we decided upon Washington, D.C. I know it's not super romantic, but neither of us could lay on a remote beach for a week and we love exploring, plus THE CHERRY BLOSSOMS! I've had to start booking some things already because the wait lists are crazy long. I think we've got the sights down, but any recommendations on a hotel or favorite places to eat?

Happy Friday!!!
Thursday, October 6, 2016

Fun on the Farm

Last weekend we headed to a research farm run by the University for their showcase. Once a year they open the farm up to the public and have tons of activities like hayrides, pumpkin picking, a corn maze, and of course animals. We've been going the last several years and it's always a great time plus the weather this year was perfectly fall-ish.

For the second year in a row, Ben decided to stick his hand inside a cow's stomach. Researchers create a fistula or passageway to the cow's stomach in order to study digestion as well look at bacteria that may be growing. The staff assured was that the cow wasn't in any pain and it was put under during the procedure. Ben said it felt like mud, but it smelled far worse. Gag.

For the first time this year they constructed a butterfly house and it was one of our favorite things. There were so many butterflies and a few even let me hold them on my finger. Despite their best effort, no butterfly would land on the kids. Even as they yelled, "THERE'S ONE!" Wonder why.

Trying some local honey.

Next up on our fall bucket list is apple picking!

Linking up with Annie for Thoughts on Thursday.
Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Crispy & Tender Chicken Parmesan

Despite seeming complicated, Chicken Parmesan is actually pretty easy to make. One thing that will kill this dish however is a soggy coating. Blah. Just thinking about it makes me want to gag. Lucky for you, this recipe will leave your chicken crisp on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside.

What You'll Need:
-4 small chicken breasts
-1/4 cup flour
-1 egg
-1/2 cup Panko breadcrumbs
-1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
-1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
-1 to 1 1/2 cup spaghetti sauce
-2 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil
-Penne/Spaghetti noodles (optional)

What To Do:
1. Place the oil in a large skillet and heat to medium/medium high
2. Trim any excess fat off the chicken
3. Place flour, egg, and breadcrumbs each in a separate bowl
4. Dip each chicken breast into the flour, then egg, and finally breadcrumbs
5. Place each chicken breast in the skillet and cook on each side 2-3 minutes until golden brown
6. Once browned, remove chicken and put it on a greased baking sheet or rack and cook at 400 degrees for ~20-30 minutes or until the center is no longer pink
7. Once chicken is throughly cooked, top with mozzarella and place it back into the oven for 1-2 minutes until the cheese melts
8. Top with sauce and serve over a bed of pasta if desired

Linking up with Karyn for Two Cup Tuesday.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Weekend Recap {Birthday Weekend}

Saturdays are amazing. Birthdays are amazing. And when your birthday happens to fall on a Saturday it's like you've hit the jackpot. 

Fall temperatures graced us with their presence this weekend and I made my first official batch of chili Friday night. We let the kids stay up as late as they wanted and J and I rented Independence Day Resurgence which despite horrible reviews, was actually pretty good.

Saturday morning we made our usual donut/bagel run and then the boys gave me their gifts. J got me a new Kate Spade purse and the boys got me a selfie stick. Let the selfies begin! And before you go thinking that my husband picked out a purse all on his own, I sent him the link to this exact one and told him to buy it :) This way he doesn't get anxiety over what to get me and I don't get anxiety over what he may buy :)

After presents the boys and I went to a neighborhood garage sale and then to a farm showcase. They have hayrides, pumpkins, and tons of animals for the kids to pet as well as a cow they can milk.

Although I failed to document it, we went to lunch with J's family and then my MIL took the boys for the night. I headed to Marshalls and then grabbed a drink (or two) with some girlfriends before J and I went to our favorite steakhouse for dinner. When we don't have kids, J and I usually go to dinner around 8:00 or so but we went around 6:30pm which meant I was in bed and asleep by 9:03pm. It was the perfect ending to a great birthday!

Sunday was a lazy morning and after making breakfast I headed to Target. Alone. I haven't done that in forever and man it feels good to just walk around and look at everything. I ended up getting these two pairs of flats and ordered the boots online since my Target didn't carry them. While I was ordering the boots however I noticed that shoes/clothing were all 20% off online only so I ordered them online and will be returning the store bought ones. 

Although I didn't end up getting it, I loved this Champagne Campaign shirt. 

Our weekend ended like usual with cleaning, laundry, and getting ready for the week ahead. Bring on October!

Linking up with Biana for Weekending.