Tuesday, September 30, 2014

October Goals

Hmmmm...I love October.

Leaves, pumpkin patches, cocoa, football, the State Fair, Halloween...I love it all.

Before we get to my October goals, here's how my September goals went down...

1. Read 2 books.
Goodness!  This month, I read 3 really different books.  

The first book I read was hands-down, without a doubt, the best book I've read in a long, long time.  It was What Remains by Carole Radziwill.  This book is so good!  It's Carole's autobiography about her husband dying of cancer...and at the same time, his cousin (and BFF) is John F. Kennedy Jr. and her BFF is Carolyn Bessette Kennedy...and we all know how that ends.  It's really meaningful, fascinating, and lovely all in one book.

The next book I read was Nicholas Sparks' The Best of Me (which is coming out as a movie this month).  Hmmm...it was okay.  I love Sparks' books and thought this one was good but not my favorite.

The last book I read was Tina Fey's Bossypants.  I laughed, I learned, and I read it quickly because it was entertaining.  If you like Tina Fey, you should read this book.

2. Family goes to Wednesday night church
We went to Wednesday night church every week this month.  My kiddos like their classes and Andrew and I like our classes too.  We're going to continue going the rest of the semester :).

3. Walk to school twice a week
Yeah, that didn't happen.  We tried the first week and it was just too hot.  We tried again last week and the weather was much better...so we can start doing it more now...but out of the entire month, we only did it twice.

4. Have friends over for dinner
On Sunday night, Andrew had a bunch of guys over for food and football and lat night, we had two families over for supper (we ate enchiladas on the patio and watched the kids play...it was so fun!).  

5. Find the perfect fall polish
I found several polishes that I love!  I talked about them on Friday.  Click here to see the results.

And now for October's Goals...

1. Read 2 (or more) books
Yup.  I'll keep you posted.

2. Walk more
The weather is so pretty that I need to be walking more in general (not just to pick Kensington up from school).  Most nights, we walk after dinner and let the kids ride their bikes...I'm going to make a conscience decision to walk more this month.

3. Enjoy pumpkin everything
Listen, pumpkin is my very favorite flavor, so I need to enjoy it this month.  A little (or a lot) of pumpkin makes this girl very happy.

4. Finish my Christmas shopping
I would love to have most of my Christmas shopping done by the end of the month.  If I get it done this month and wrapped next month, then in December, I can enjoy the holidays without stressing.  I need to focus.  Focus, focus, focus.

5. Volunteer and Kensington's school once a week
Last week, I volunteered at Kensington's school one day and really enjoyed being able to help.  The days Smith are in preschool are the best days for me to help out, so I'm going to really and try and do that at least once a week this month.

6. Finish Ashby's room
Her room is basically finished but she needs basics like clothes, shoes, pjs, diapers, socks, coats and such.  I need to get her closet and dresser full of those necessities. 

Since we're talking about October, here are a few pics from last weekend's Oktoberfest in our town...

My kids looked forward to Oktoberfest all week!  It's an annual tradition for us to attend our town's (last weekend) and my parents' town (next weekend).  We started off our day with lots of jumping!

They loved the German dancers :).

They raced along the hay bales.

We bought candy and popcorn!

We did the "chicken dance" :).

We had the BEST time!!!

Happy (almost) October to you!

And for dinner tonight...

...my Tex Mex Chicken & Rice Soup.  Yum :). 


Monday, September 29, 2014

Fifty Two Shades of Shay: Scarves Part 2

Yay!  It's Scarf Day around here!

Ladies, I am such a scarf person and I know you are too!  I love the fun emails, comments and Face Book messages I get from you guys about your love affair with scarves.  A scarf is just the perfect accessory no matter your shape, size or age...a scarf just works :).

Last fall, I did Part One of this Shade of Shay but since it's so popular, I'm bringing it back today for Part 2!

Many of you have asked how I store my scarves...well, I used to use scarf hangers like this...

This one is from Container Store but places like Target sell similar hangers too.  These are especially great for light scarves.  I like these hangers because you can pull them out and easily see what you have.

 Now that we're in the new house, I made room to roll my scarves and display them in my closet...

...if you don't have shelves, you can roll scarves and place them in a dresser drawer too.  This is really handy for thick, knit scarves that don't fit through the scarf hangers.

I typically tie my scarves one of four ways...

I wear infinity scarves and they're simple because all you do is loop them around your neck twice.  Easy peezy.

The above scarf was from last year and is no longer available but this year, the same designers brought back a tassel version like these above in the same fun colors.

The second way I tie a scarf is to get one that is nice and fluffy and first hold it out in front of your neck and place the back ends behind you.  Then take the end that's hanging over your right shoulder and bring it in front of you left shoulder and the one hanging over your left shoulder and bring it in front of your right shoulder.  Then take your hands and kind of fluff it away from your neck a bit.

The third way I tie a scarf is to do the #2 way but then take the ends and tie them together, then I pull the knot over to the side.  It kind of creates an infinity style.

My friend Lori taught me how to tie my scarf this way a few years ago and it works really well (especially for knit scarves).  I couldn't even begin to type directions for this, so thankfully The Frugal Homemaker had this graphic on Pinterest.

So, now that I've shown you how I love to store them and tie them...I thought I'd show you what kinds you need in your closet for this fall.  
Here are my favorite scarves...

1. Solid Infinity (light)

I know I've talked about these scarves a million times but they are without a doubt the very best solid infinity scarves you will ever buy.  Ever.

Every time, I wear one of mine I think to myself that it's just the easiest scarf to wear.  They are light enough for spring and summer over a tank and definitely work for fall too layered with your sweaters and jackets.

The best part is that they're 2 for $38 and come in 30 different colors.

I bought denim, khaki and red pop and love them so very much!

Here I am wearing my khaki one...ahhh...love :).

2. Solid Infinity (heavy)

Over the years, I have collected my fair share of heavy, solid infinity scarves.  These are those scarves you turn to every day in winter...the champs that warm you up and never let you down. Like I said before, this one was my favorite from last year...

...but it's not available this year.  Instead, the same brand put out this tassel version...

...which is really cute too! When it's cold outside, you just throw this on and you're ready to go.  Simple and perfect!

Not a tassel fan?  These are great cable knit scarves that are only $20...

3. Leopard

Ahhh...leopard :).  Everyone needs a leopard scarf!  If we've decided that leopard is a neutral (and I believe we have firmly established that), then we all need a leopard scarf.  Mine was in stock for a full year, so if you didn't get it while it was out there...no worries, here are a few other really cute leopard scarves...

4. Plaid

I am obsessed with plaid scarves.  O-B-S-E-S-S-E-D.  They are without a doubt my very favorite kind to wear...and for some reason, this year, stores just can't seem to keep them in stock!  Every time you ladies send me a link to your favorite plaid scarf, it is sold out fast!
(You can find my scarf above here.)

I'm going to show you a ton of plaid scarves and let's just hope some of them are still in stock :).

The scarf on the left is this year's version of mine on the right.  I wore this scarf the most last year.  Love it!!

They are sold out of my pink version of this scarf but they do have a really pretty grey version available. 

Buffalo Check Plaid, yes please!  I ordered this one!!  It's also available in 3 other colors.

This plaid scarf is available 3 color patterns. 

Whew!  I have lots of love for the plaid scarves!!

5. Bright

And finally...bright.  I love a bright and cheery scarf on a dreary old winter day.

This is a fun Neon Yellow Scarf to make a cold day sunny...

...and this fun Neon Pink Scarf is fleece and perfect for outdoor activities.

I love sharing my love of scarves with you ladies :).  Now, let's all go put on a fun scarf and have the BEST Monday!  XOXO


...don't forget, it's Meal Planning Monday today.  You can wear a scarf while you whip up your grocery list for this week's suppers.

And Pin-spired is on Wednesday!

Friday, September 26, 2014

Friday (Fall) Favorites!!

Happy Friday!

I'm linking up with 3 of my besties today (Andrea, Narci and Erika) to share some of my Friday Favorites...and today, it's all fall y'all!

On the first day of fall...I accidentally had the best fall day ever ;).  I didn't start out thinking "it's the first day of fall, I should really make the most of it"...it just kind of happened!

It was in the 50s when we left that morning...so it was my first day to wear a light jacket.  Yay!!  
(PS: I bought this jacket during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale and it's no longer in stock...which is too bad because I really love it!)

After I dropped off Smith at Pre-K, I decided to take my laptop to Starbucks and work outside while I drank my coffee...it was chilly, I had a Pumpkin Spice Latte and the perfect place to do my work!

After I picked up Smith from school, we decided to walk to Kensington's school (since the weather was still so nice) instead of waiting in the carpool line.  Thumbs up for walking to school!

And then after dinner, we headed to our grocery store to pick out some pumpkins for the porch.  Woohoo!

The kids all picked out a pumpkin for their room and wanted to write their names on them :).

If you're pinning like crazy these days...make sure you're following one of my fall inspired boards...

Next week, we're having Scarf-a-palooza over here on my blog! Apparently, I am not the only one scarf obsessed!  You ladies have been emailing me like crazy about your love of scarves too!  Nothing says fall quite like the warmth of a yummy scarf.  Here are a couple to make your Friday a little fabulous...

I bought the scarf on the right last December at Gap and loooooove it!  The left scarf is Gap's version this year and it looks equally fabulous :).

And remember how last year, we all loved this scarf...

Well, this year, the same brand has the exact same colors but in a tassel version instead...
...Sheaffer said it best last year...these scarves just style themselves.  You literally just put it on and it's styled.  More scarf love next week!

My last little fall favorite...if you'll remember back at the beginning of the month, I set out to find
the perfect fall polish (because that's the kind of science experiments I'm good at doing!)...and I have my results.

I used OPI's base coat, two coats of each polish and OPI's top coat for each polish.  I change my polish every 5 days but I really think you could go over a week with any of these (I couldn't go that long because I had a science experiment to do!)

This is Essie's Wicked.  It's a really, really, really dark red and I loved it!

This is a new one from Essie called Dressed to Kilt and I had more comments on IG over this one (from people just seeing my nails in random pictures).  It's a nice red...not too bright but not too dark either.

If you're looking for a deeper (kind of purple-red), I liked OPI's In the Cable Carpool Line.  My friend Lori had it on and I instantly knew I needed to try this one.

And this one has always been my very favorite fall color...it's OPI's Lincoln Park After Dark. It's such a deep purple that it's just about black.  I love this one!

Last December, I showed you guys inside our house at Christmas and so many of you wanted my kiddos' Christmas sheets...

...but by then, it was December and Pottery Barn Kids was sold out of them (I had purchased them in September).  So this year, I'm giving you a heads up :).  The sheets are in stock right now but you and I both know they won't be for long.  Tis the season for fun sheets!

And because I think this is just fabulous...

Money Magazine named my town the #1 best place to live in America!  Isn't that so fun?!?!  We were ranked #2 back in 2012 and worked our way to #1.

We are ranked in the "small city" section which is funny because our town's population is about 150,000...but we do have a wonderful small town feel.  There is no where on earth I would rather raise my family than in this town.  I'm super proud to call McKinney home.

And finally, on my foodie blog today...

...my Caramel Apple Bread Pudding.

People.  You need to make this fabulous dessert.  Like now.  Like right away.  It is really good!

Happy, happy, happy Friday!

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