Friday, September 30

Pale Pink Chrysanthemums

This Sunday is our Fauxgiving celebration with my husband's side of the family.  I spent the day cleaning the house, which really needed it.  The last time things got a good scrubbing was mid-August when Metropolitan Tikhon came, but things have been busy with Father John's sickness and recovery, the start of school, and visits from family.  It felt so good to get everything in order, though.

One of the things that needed a little attention was the porch.  I tidied everything up and then took a little drive to the nursery for some pretty chrysanthemums .  I was looking for white ones (like I usually buy), but these pale pink beauties just called my name.  When I took them home, I couldn't believe how nicely they went with the stone on the porch floor and the lovely pumpkins we bought on the first day of autumn.  

Tomorrow is a big cooking day for me.  Sugar Plum is excited to try her hand at pie baking this year.  We have and apple pie and two different types of pumpkin pie planned.


Thursday, September 29

September is for Skirts: Day Four


  Kate and I wore our new skirts out today and we loooooove them!  

In other news, Kate wanted an autumn wreath for her front door, so we popped in to Michaels and bought some materials to make one.

Wednesday, September 28

September is for Skirts: Day Three


In only three days, Kate was able to finish three of the four Oliver+S Everyday skirts!  The fourth skirt will be completed tomorrow after a quick trip to the store for a little more elastic.  I just love the drape and color of the fabric (Merchant and Mills Linen)! 

Tuesday, September 27

September is for Skirts: Day Two


While my little girl and I made blueberry muffins for breakfast this morning, Kate finished all of the edges of the pieces for four skirts.  By the end of the day, there was so much done!  She was able to do the pockets, front panel gathering, and the side panels!  

Monday, September 26

September is for Skirts: Day One


We are so lucky!  Kate and and her little ones are visiting for the next four days and we are planning to sew as much as we can on four Oliver + S Everyday Skirts.  When she visited last, we placed an order for some beautiful linen in black and silt (which is the perfect gray) and I am so happy with the quality.  These skirts are going to be amazing additions to our wardrobes!

Freshening Up the Swing


Our white porch swing was looking a bit rough around the edges and so, on a whim, we decided to paint it black.  I really love how it turned out!  I had originally wanted it to be black, but white matched our previous house a little better.  Now I have the color I wanted and the swing looks great with the color and hardware of the rectory.

Sunday, September 25

Dress Shopping

My sisters, mother, and I converged to a little shop in a small coastal town to pick out and buy Anna's wedding dress today!  Because the appointment for the shop was at 2 pm, the children and I woke up very early and drove to one of my favorite churches for Sunday Liturgy.  Afterward, we met up with everyone and ate a delicious lunch at a diner where we were treated like long-lost family!  The atmosphere was so great!

Anna tried on a few dresses and by the end of our appointment, she had picked the winner!  She looks so gorgeous in the gown and I can't wait to show you photographs of her in it in the spring.  We'll be getting together soon to choose bridesmaid dresses and outfits for the children.  Weddings are such exciting times!

We all went our separate ways after the dress appointment and I decided to treat the children to dinner at their favorite restaurant as a reward for being so helpful and good humored during the long drive, church, and dress shopping.

Saturday, September 24

This Week's Menu

Toasted Bagels
Toasted Apple Bread
Waffles and Bacon

Bean Burritos 
Chicken Stew and Buttermilk Biscuits
Steak, Potatoes, and Veggies with Dip 
Ravioli with Meat Sauce and  Salad
Tuna on Toast 
Chicken and Mushrooms over Egg Noodles
Vegetable Fajitas

Ice Cream
Chocolate Chip Cookies

Friday, September 23

Oh, I Do Love Saturday


I find that it is only when school is in session that I am able to fully enjoy Saturday.  There's time for a leisurely breakfast, mid-morning baths, a relaxed wander through my favorite grocery store for necessities like Olives!  Flowers! Fresh Rolls!, and an afternoon sprawled out on the bed with a good book.  

What are you up to tomorrow? 

Thursday, September 22

Autumn, at Last

I am made for autumn. Summer and I have a fickle relationship, but everything about autumn is perfect to me. Wooly jumpers, Wellington boots, scarves, thin first, then thick, socks. The low slanting light, the crisp mornings, the chill in my fingers, those last warm sunny days before the rain and the wind. Her moody hues and subdued palate punctuated every now and again by a brilliant orange, scarlet or copper goodbye. She is my true love.”

Alys Fowler

Wednesday, September 21

Our Thanksgiving Menu

Each year we celebrate Thanksgiving early with my husband's side of the family.  Rather than holding our festivities in the beginning of November as we usually do, we will have our meal on October 2nd.  Here is our menu:
Hors d'oeuvres
Vegetable and Dip Platter
Cheese Platter
Sausage Stuffed Jalapeno and Sweet Peppers
Main Course
Turkey (as long as I can find one!)
Mashed Potatoes
Cranberry Sauce
Squash Casserole
Vanilla Ice Cream 

Tuesday, September 20

On a Gloomy Tuesday...


Today was sneaker shopping day.  Two children found what they were looking for and we ended up ordering Little Man's online.  He's disappointed to have to wait, but it'll be worth it when they arrive!  Homeschool gym class starts on Thursday and the children cannot wait.  Gym day is their favorite.  

Father John is finally starting to really feel like himself after his surgery on September 1st.  Today was the first day that he did a full day of work and though he is tired, he was able to accomplish quite a bit.  It's amazing how much surgery takes a toll on a person.  We are so thankful that he was healed and is doing well.

Though it is still warm and humid outdoors, autumn is just around the corner!  I was able to snag the very last beeswax pumpkin candle at our health food store today, which makes me very happy.  I'm looking forward to lighting it for the first time on Thursday morn.

Monday, September 19

Living and Learning: The Week Ahead

In The Kitchen
Our daughter has wanted to learn how to cook and bake for awhile now and I have made a concerted effort the past couple of weeks to teach her the little I know.  Our strategy, thus far, has been to have her help prepare different parts of our meals on a daily basis and also to bake once or twice a week.  When she really likes making an item, she copies the recipe onto a card for her recipe box.  We've also been going over proper kitchen safety and cooking etiquette (asking before you begin, checking to see that we have the ingredients needed for a specific recipe, cleaning up your work space, etc.) and it has been a lot of fun for the two of us!

I don't know where I heard Debussy first, but I love listening to his music.  I found Debussy:  Piano Favorites available for free for Prime Members and have been enjoying it very much.  My favorite piece is Clair de Lune...  have a listen below:

On My Bedside Table
I bought a gently used copy of Excellent Women by Barbara Pym and am enjoying it very much.  Pym's writing reminds me of Miss Read, who is my favorite authoress.  I'm looking forward to reading more!

Season 2 of Poldark begins this coming Sunday on Masterpiece and I cannot wait!

Thought the weather is still pretty warm and humid, I have started to really get into the autumnal spirit.  I retrieved some of my pumpkin decorations from the attic last night and Sugar Plum made Apple Bread tonight.  I'm going to check the store to see if I can find a pumpkin candle like we had last year.  This is such a wonderful time of the year!

Sunday, September 18

This Week's Menu

Pancakes and Sausage
Eggs and Bacon


Chicken Caesar Salad
Chicken Pot Pie
Vegan Chili
Chili Cheese Dip
Chicken and Cheese Tortillas
Grilled Chicken served over Garden Salad

Baked Goods
Homemade Biscuits
Apple Blueberry Crisp

Saturday, September 17

Floral Pumpkins


Something jogged my memory on Friday (was it a smidgen of chill in the air?) that there just might be these fancily decorated pumpkins at the flower lady's stall.  I got up early on Saturday to see (she sells out very quickly!) and was thrilled to find that there were lots to choose from.   I picked two lovely white pumpkins (one for the dining room table and one for the coffee table).  Looking back at photographs of last year, my floral pumpkin lasted until well after Christmas.  I'm glad that I chose white ones rather than orange...  they'll look lovely through the autumn and even into the winter.   

Friday, September 16

Apple Blueberry Crisp by Our Girl


  Sugar Plum loves fruit crisp and so she had to try her hand at making some all by herself.  She used apples and blueberries for this version and it was amazing!  When I make crisp, I leave big crumbles of topping and Sugar Plum was able to break the topping up very finely.  The result was a very refined and delicate dessert.  I was very impressed!

Thursday, September 15

Linen Tunic Dress...


I ordered a linen tunic dress over a month ago and it finally arrived yesterday!  It is absolutely lovely and just what I was hoping for.  I special ordered a longer length (44" which hits me right below the knee).  I should have ordered a size down, but my bust measurement made me worry that a large wouldn't be big enough.  I've dropped it off at the dry cleaner to be taken in and in a week it'll be just right!

Wednesday, September 14

Drawing and Tidying


My new favorite thing to do is to draw my clothes.  I still have to add my jeans, boots, shawl, and light coat to my autumnal wardrobe page.  I'm no artist, but there's something soothing about drawing things out.

 I've been happily wearing the chambray skirt that my sister made for me last week.  It looks so nice with all of my three-quarter sleeved target shirts and my summer sandals.  I wonder how long it will be before I can trade them for my beloved tights and boots. 

 I organized my closet tonight, putting away some of my summer clothes (mainly the things that are white) and carefully folding and hanging everything nicely.  I still have to go through all of the children's clothing putting away the warm weather things and bringing out the cold weather ones, but there will be at least a few more weeks of warm weather to enjoy.  

Tuesday, September 13

The Helpful Trio...


These children of ours are growing up.  The Trio has been helping a lot by cleaning up after meals (clearing the table and putting food away, sweeping, emptying the dishwasher, and washing dishes) and cleaning the bathrooms.  Sugar Plum even baked biscuits this week (all three of the children are desperate to learn how to bake and cook) and ran into the store on her own to buy some tortilla chips to go with our dinner.  All of this has been so helpful to their Papa and me!  I love to keep house and it is hard to relinquish control over things, but it is important for our little ones to learn skills like this.  They've followed along doing tasks with me their whole lives and it is good to let them spread their little wings a bit and try to do things themselves without me supervising every little detail.  Plus, think of all of the nice things that will be coming out of the kitchen when they master the art of cooking! 

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