Botanical gardens field trip

This past week I went with A on his final field trip of the year. His class visited our local botanical gardens, which has been magnificently updated since the last time we’ve been! We had a scavenger hunt in the butterfly area, saw the new dinosaur exhibit, and the kids ran about in the play area.

I had a blast spending the day with A!

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Friday Favorites

Love cuddling up with the boys after bath time and watching Iron Chef before books and bed.

Things people don’t discuss in business, but should. Great for my biz com students!

Weatherproofing outdoor chairs, on my list for our outdoor chairs this summer.

Coordinating colors for our bedroom wingback chairs.

Lemon ice box pie with golden Oreos, perfect Spring/Summer dessert.

Gorgeous summer dress and I’m already trying to figure out how to re-create her hairstyle.

I’ve got Hawaii on my bucket list for vacations with the boys. Maybe, Maui?

An alternative to the pencil skirt for the office.

Creating beautiful balconies in small spaces.

Hilariously readings of bad yelp reviews.

Y’all know I’m obsessed with bread and baking bread. I’m thinking about incorporating it with a Between the Lions episode this summer with the boys.

And finally, a kid friendly Fitbit that I’m betting will wind up on A’s Christmas list.

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This and that

This is one if my favorite parts of every morning. J comes in with his daily menagerie of peeps cuddles up at the end of our bed and likes me to pat his back while he wakes up:

This is a picture of our neighborhood geese that had babies! Check out their goslings:

Hopefully they stay together, unlike Jon and Kate.
This is the stack of library books that I picked up this week to try to attempt to keep up with A’s reading (and a few books for J and The Lion King DVD):

This is how J spent his time before TBall practice on Tuesday:

And this is how A spent his time:

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Hiking gear musts

Whenever we go hiking we have some must haves to bring and wear. First up what I wear:

Light weight tank & leggings, hat, sunglasses, and quality shoes that I don’t mind getting dirty. You honestly don’t catch B and I outside without sunglasses on. It’s not because it’s sunny all the time (which it is a lot here), but it’s because it prevents allergens from getting in our eyes. Seriously. I don’t know if you’ve been to the south, but allergies here are no joke. I keep trying to convince the boys to wear sunnies by buying them new ones constantly. It hasn’t worked great, as you can see above. Hats are also a must to prevent ticks from getting in your hair (insert wide eyed scary face here).

The boys wear athletic gear (our favorites are under armour and champion) and lightweight shoes that are washable.

Our must haves to carry (besides lots of trail mix!) are:

All of these are on the Cub Scout list if hiking essentials. We’ve convinced A that we have a map and compass on our phone, so we don’t need to bring those as well, however we also carry a battery pack charger for our phones. And if you need extra help you could always read our go to guide:

Just kidding! However, this is one that’s great for our area:

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Favorite trail mix

The boys declared this their favorite trail mix, ever, so I figured I better remember what I made for next time. My idea was simple, grab items from the pantry that were not chocolate or cheese covered, and would be both a treat and something filling.

Other items on our list for future trail mix is dried fruit, white chocolate chips, and granola clusters! They definitely enjoyed their snacks on the trail!

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Keel mountain preserve

On a whim after church on Sunday we headed out to hike a new trail. This was the most challenging trail we’ve attempted with both boys. It was a mile out and a mile back, but a good part of it is steep inclines and we were climbing to hit the higher elevations. In the past the boys would have wanted to turn around part way, but they were determined to see the waterfall at the end, so we hiked almost nonstop until we reached the waterfall.

As you can see here the trail is pretty heavily wooded, and at points the trail is quite narrow. Howeve, the canopy makes this great for hiking when it is warm because it keeps most of the trail quite cool:

B led the trail with J and A and I followed behind. I pray that this boy always shares as much as he does now with me. He talked for the entire two hours that we walked. I have the low down on all the happenings in second grade now.

The pictures don’t really go the waterfall justice, but it was awesome! Definitely a sight to see.

And here is A’s collage collection of cool things we found on the trail:

And some more pictures of the outstanding waterfall:

It was well worth our Sunday afternoon!

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Friday Favorites

This kid. He’s about to end his preschool years and officially enter elementary school with his brother. I’m soaking up the last days of being able to walk to pick him up from school, visit our neighborhood ducks and turtles, and arrive home to sit on the front porch, eat popsicles, and discuss what animals have ears.

Consider this tape dispenser already ordered for J for Christmas.

A perfect summer centerpiece.

A chocolate chip cookie is always a good reason to grow mint.

Cinnamon sugar tortilla roll-ups, the perfect end to a Cinco de Mayo.

Pool cover-up and flip-flops.

Did Jack Sparrow ruin The Pirates of Caribbean?

On the magic of having boys.

Thoughts on why we don’t embrace the scale for baking in the U.S.

Short ribs and romaine stir fry sounds amazing!

And finally, sunscreen touch up powder is on my list to test out.

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Upping our succulent game

My little plants at home are thriving! So much so that I decided to purchase a few more to keep at my office. The boys helped me plant them, and I thanked the Lord that I thought to buy two because then they could each individually plant one, instead of arguing over turns.

You can see A’s freshly gone tooth, here! He’s proud of that and his freshly potted plant!


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Taco potatoes with chicken

This meal is really about the potatoes, friends. I have been trying for years to convince the boys that oven cooked potatoes are as good as french fries from the bag. They never believed me. Until now! So I whipped up a batch of taco potatoes (two large russet potatoes were plenty for my family, so adjust accordingly), and served it with store bought rotesserie chicken. I used our taco seasoning for the potatoes. I topped it with BBQ sauce (however, you could do ranch or sour cream), and sprinkled it with cilantro. The boys ate it up, and asked for seconds. Mission accomplished.

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