It’s a great pumpkin…

DSC_0724“Every fall, the leaves on the trees turn brown and fall off the branches, pumpkins grow big and plump in their patches. The air grows cooler, and people start to think about their Halloween costumes. And every fall, Linus writes a very important letter.” Charles Shultz captures the essence of childhood in his amazing stories of Charlie Brown. I know I was always a fan of Peanuts when I was growing up and now I have the opportunity to share these fun stories with Emie. Reading the stories are so fun, they bring fond memories of my dad and I want Emie to share in these same memories too.

DSC_0515The last several weeks have been one fun adventure after another. With each activity, I have definitely kept my Nikon by my side to capture precious moments. DSC_0752

We have hiked in the mountains and looked at leaves turning, balloon watched, pumpkin patched, decorated, and baked. When we went to one of the pumpkin patches Emie had a wonderful time. It was somewhat of a playdate/photoshoot and pumpkin picking event.

IMG_4240Now that we have a porch full of pumpkins it was the perfect excuse to plan a pumpkin carving party this week and I just know Emie is going to have a blast. I also know my chickens will be loving the pumpkin seeds and “stuffing” to snack on too.

The shop has been busy shipping out our festive Halloween bows too- as a brief side note, thanks so much to those who are supporting our small business. I know we thank you often, but we genuinely appreciate your business and spreading the word to your families and friends.

DSC_0382As for this week, I am happily planning delicious fall snacks and activities with Emie. I want to hear from you, what are your family Halloween traditions? Are you dressing up? Share your stories and fall favorites with me. Make today great, and thanks for stopping by to read. So… I have to ask, will you be waiting in the pumpkin patch this Halloween night for the Great Pumpkin to arrive with toys for all the boys and girls? I’m sure I can guess where my sweet baboo will be! (smiles)DSC_0583

City Homesteading?

DSC_0369

So is it possible to live in the city and be a homesteader? I can honestly say since we have purchased chickens my entire outlook has changed on how I want to live my life. Last year we not only got the chickens, but also decided to stop buying breads in the stores and make our own. I was honestly amazed at the amount of money we saved the very first month by making our own bread. We have come across a sandwich bread recipe of which I am happy to share with you. We also make any other bread products we need. It probably sounds excessive, but each month we use a 25 pound bag of flour between baking and cooking. We do not even eat that much bread in our family, but with Emelie she adores peanut butter toast and so having bread is essential. Our sandwich bread recipe is awesome because I can make up to 4 loaves at a time and freeze them. We have started shopping more farmers’ markets and we are eating a significant amount of fresher and healthier things. Keep in mind, when I first met Craig, the man would not touch a salad with a ten foot pole, but he has since learned to eat them and there are so many possibilities to make a salad delicious and satisfying. Not only as a family, but personally for me, I just feel better eating cleaner without all of the processed foods and preservatives. We are ultra particular about the meat we buy and have become spoiled with grass fed beef. We are hoping to eventually share a cow with someone and have a freezer full of delicious meat. We rarely go out to eat and are even less likely to eat fast food.  I personally cannot justify the cost of the food out, but it’s so filled with empty nonsense with minimal nutritional value. Now, honestly, I will not deprive myself if I want something utterly delicious and decadent, but I have come across so many recipes, I can make what I want from scratch. We have decided to build a planter box to plant some vegetables at home. We have never had the greenest of thumbs, so these plants are definitely being planted with prayers, crossed fingers, and highest of hopes they blossom and grow. Browsing on Pinterest and doing a little research we opted to try and plant some beets. There is nothing yummier than an oven roasted beet on a fresh salad.

DSC_0552

According to some research, beets are able to be grown nearly year round and so we have purchased three varieties; I must say, this is exciting and something to look forward to. In the midst of shopping for seedlings, I came across a large variety of pumpkins to grow and cook with, and even though I am not the largest pumpkin fan when it comes to baked goods; I am getting better. I found seeds to grow some blue pumpkins! I figured it would be excellent to grow some pumpkins with the other veggies we are trying to grow and now is the perfect time to attempt any hopes of having an established plant from seeds within a few months. My mom and I have laughed with Craig that honestly he shouldn’t be surprised if he comes home from work one day and we have a little nanny goat on the back patio. Who doesn’t want fresh goat milk from home? Needless to say, I realize I am not allowed to have a goat, but it is utterly hilarious to pick on this man. I just want to do so much more as far as homesteading is concerned. It is a new energy of fun things I want to try and see where it goes. Are you a homesteader? Is it possible to be a homesteader in the city? Share your experiences with me, I am eager to read your insight. Make it a fabulous Friday!

DSC_0571

Grand Opening!

DSC_0102_01

Ok everyone, this is truly an exciting day for us- it is our small, but wonderful Bowtique’s grand opening! As you know from following my progress, this shop has been several months and weeks in the making. With our shop celebrating its grand opening, we are offering free shipping on all orders starting now and ending Saturday. We will be offering a lot more promotions over the next several days also, so please stay tuned and spread the word. Now we are able to reveal even more products, meaning variety for you, and showcasing our discounted and handmade with love products. Please take some time and stop by: https://charmingandchicbowtique.storenvy.com

Make today a fabulous day and thank you for your continued prayers, support and encouragement through every single step of this process.

Long Weekend

Post Labor Day weekend greetings to my faithful readers. This weekend was really nice, much needed and greatly appreciated. First off, the Bowtique did its first sale with promotion to test the waters prior to the Grand Opening on October 1st. The sale was a complete success and gave us more exposure and that is always good! Looking forward to more business and satisfied customers. As we grow closer to more of the holidays, things are only going to get more exciting and this past weekend was a terrific start!

Additionally, is anyone else eager for fall? I must ask, because to me, Labor Day is the ultimate kick off to fall and all the fall decorations. I am somewhat reminded of one of my favorite movies, You’ve Got Mail, in the beginning when Joe and Kathleen are first communicating via email. I remember them chatting about loving fall in New York City, and the great things the season brings. Having fall approaching has making Joe wanting to buy school supplies and he says that if he knew Kathleen personally, he would send her a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils. Many of the comments they share in their messages I completely relate to. I suppose I do rely on a lot of movie content in my life and I do incorporate it into my daily life. My point to this aside is, I’m ready for fall! Now that school is in session (even though I do not have a school age child) there are many things to look forward to in the coming weeks and I feel like Labor Day helps pave the way for it all!

As a family we did decorate this weekend for Fall/Halloween. We didn’t do any outdoor décor yet, but we put out some fall leaves, pumpkins and put up some lights. I even picked up a new candle at one of my favorite stores for fall. It is called “Sweater Weather,” and it is delightful to say the least. I lit the candle over the weekend and it is just wonderful. There is a certain warmth and comfort that comes with all of these sights and smells.

We also made it a point to purposefully rest this weekend. Over the last several weeks we have definitely been spread thin and our immune systems were not quite up to par. There have been many working hours- more than usual, the excitement of a brief weekend getaway to visit Kellie, Brett and Riley and everything else in between. Needless to say, we needed some sleep-in and down-time relaxation. We were able to sit outside for brunches and dinner and enjoy the beautiful days and nights in the yard. On Monday evening we had a special treat to eat outside under the canopy while it was raining. The smell of fresh rain and listening to it fall while eating was amazing. The food definitely tasted more amazing! Although there was a certain amount of daily “to-dos” and such it was nice to not have the typical strict agenda and to enjoy one another.

Chatting with Mom off and on we were reminded about how much we enjoy baking many of our “fall-favorite” goodies and we put those on our list of yummies to eat and bake. I am looking forward to sharing some of our favorites with you! Our local state fair is also coming to town this week for a couple of weeks so we were talking about taking Emie again this year. You can count on exciting stories from that journey too!

Well, I am going to sign off for today. I would love to hear about your long weekend and what you are most looking forward to this fall. Thank you for coming by and reading today. I look forward to visiting with you again soon! Make today a wonderful day with renewed minds and spirits- we serve such an awesome God and He blesses us with new opportunities to better serve Him each day.