Monday, October 31, 2016

Weekending: Happy Halloween!

First of all: 


I'm so excited for this evening with the boys -- Knox's first Halloween and Walker's third! It's going to be a fun time seeing Walker trick-or-treat, Knox very likely despise his costume {ha!} and I'm planning to make my annual Halloween supper of baked potato soup and French bread to devour once the boys are in bed. We got the boys each a book for their little Halloween gift; Walker got this one and Knox got this one, and Walker is going to have his breakfast on a little "Trick-or-Treat" plate I found in Target's Dollar Aisle. I love holidays, but especially with these two little guys who just make them that much sweeter. 


But now, onto our weekend! 

-FRIDAY we...

+Baked pumpkin muffins {using this recipe}, and had enough batter leftover to make a yummy bundt cake!


+ Opened the door to find Walker's sweet little friends had left a yummy "just because" Halloween treat from one of our favorite bakeries on our porch! I'm so thankful for good friends for my boys {and me}!



+ Welcomed Brandon home with open arms! It was so good to have him home and all of us under one roof.

+ Made this for supper and caught up on "This is Us" and "Modern Family" after the boys went to bed.  

-SATURDAY we...

+ Were up and at 'em {#becausekids} and I just couldn't get enough of these two precious boys in their matching orange and white jammies watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" It seriously was everything my fall Saturday morning dreams were made of.  


+ Waited for Brandon to go early vote, which only took him about 10 minutes! Yay for having a state that does early voting! 

+ Carved a jack-o-lantern for the boys while listening to the "Ghostbusters" theme song, "Thriller" and "Monster Mash." This is one of my favorite traditions! Walker had very strict specifications for his jack-o-lantern this year: a 'W' for a mouth and triangle eyes. Brandon was happy to oblige. ;)  




+ Watched the pathetic Baylor game, and finally pulled down the jumperoo from the attic for Knox during halftime. I haven't been ready for my last baby to be big enough for this yet {because I'm definitely not rushing any of the stages}, but he absolutely loved it and got a big kick out of it. And of course, big brother was mad he couldn't get in and jump, too. Ha!



+ Made this delicious meal for supper, which is definitely going on the meal rotation! 

+ Had my blogging friend-turned real-life friend Gentel and her husband Keith over to visit since she was in town for a conference. It was so fun catching up over some drinks and flipping between college football and the World Series on TV. Love spending time with good friends! 

-SUNDAY we...

+ Went to church, and then came home for leftovers and lots of relaxing. If you follow me on Snapchat or Instagram Stories, you saw that sweet Knox didn't sleep in the church nursery at all yesterday morning. So, he spent some time in my lap and enjoyed seeing himself in my phone's screen... 



...and then was totally zonked out on my lap a few minutes later. And then he proceeded to take a three-hour nap in his crib. ALL THE PRAISE HAND EMOJIS! This little dude is a much, much better sleeper than his brother was at this age and I'm so thankful for that! {And to BabyWise!} 


+ While I stayed home with Knox and got what felt like our entire closet ironed, Brandon took Walker to Great Wolf Lodge to swim in/play on their indoor water park! Gentel gave us their passes since they stayed there for her conference and weren't going to use them, and Walker absolutely loved it. L-O-V-E-D it!


+ Made this for supper, which was an epic fail: too salty, needed to add a meat and it just used practically every pot/pan in my kitchen. Sigh.  

+ Watched the Cowboys game, and I couldn't hang and called it an early night. #imold

I hope y'all have a fabulous {safe} Halloween!

Linking up with Biana 

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday: Last One for October

Okay, how on Earth I'm writing my last Friday post for October is beyond me! But it's here and ALL THE PRAISE HANDS! Brandon has been traveling since Sunday and is en route back to Texas, and we can't wait to have him home! 

-ONE-
Can I just say that I'm beyond thankful for the precious, precious ladies I've met through this blogging community? In my perfect world, y'all would all live in Texas near me and we'd all hang out daily. Ha! {I'll just settle for our daily text, email, FaceTime, Snapchat and Instagram conversations until y'all decide to move to the great state of Texas. ;)} 

But seriously, it's so funny how blogging brings people together, and I was thrilled to meet my blogging friend Gentel {and her husband Keith} for lunch yesterday and catch up! We officially met in person last year on our trip to NYC, and we joke "all because of a blog."


-TWO-
This is total #momlife, but there are so many movies I have yet to see and am dying for them to come to Netflix. Namely? "Bad Moms," "Sully," and "Bridget Jones's Baby." Seriously, y'all, I can't even tell you the last time I went to a theater...and if I think hard, I'm pretty sure it was when I was pregnant with Walker. Yikes! 

 
-THREE-
While we're on the subject of TV/movies, I'm {still} obsessed with "Blue Bloods." Literally, I cannot get enough! Since Brandon has been traveling this week, I've been watching a couple of episodes each night after the boys are asleep and could probably watch more, but you know, I need to sleep. ;) I was watching Wednesday night and -- while they didn't mention where they were -- I noticed they filmed at one of our favorite NYC restaurants, Freeman's! It's fun to see that and notice it! 


-FOUR-
Y'all, this totally makes me a nerd AND THAT'S OKAY, but I was laughing so hard at the recent Watters' World segment about the Millennial Vote. I was laughing so hard I was crying at the guy who asked about the "conceived notion of the label," the guy in the green shirt, and the guy who said, "Just don't do capitalism anymore!" Ha! 


-FIVE-
I've been working with Walker on his letters, and of course we started with "W," for obvious reasons. I'd say this isn't too bad for a 2.5-year-old! Now onto the other 25 letters...



Linking up with April, Andrea, Amy, Amanda and Katie 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Thoughts for Thursday: "Owlegories" Review & Discount Code

Happy Thursday, lovelies! Today I'm thrilled to share with you a review and some information about "Owlegories." Have y'all ever heard of this precious new children's series? 

Owlegories is a new animated series and interactive digital app that teaches kids about God through the amazing things found in nature and revealed in God's Word. Owlegories explores the nature of God as the Creator of the universe through this new, fun-filled animated show. 


Owlegories was started by Tom and Julie Boto, a couple who happen to be great friends of my in-law's and I just love supporting them and their venture. They have four precious boys, and quite honestly are some of the sweetest, most genuine people I've ever encountered. Their heart is to share the gospel of Jesus with the next generation.


Walker is in love with this series, and it's sweet to see the amazing truths that come out of his mouth after watching and/or playing on the {free!} app, which you can download here. And I love that there is no sassy talk coming out of the mouths on this show, and they don't talk back to their parents, or say ugly words. What I love the most, however, is that each episode has a key verse for kids to tie it all together and there are special "appearances" by people Mom and Dad may know, including Matt Chandler, Dr. Tony Evans and even Uncle Si from "Duck Dynasty" fame!


And just in time for Christmas, Owlegories has a Christmas DVD, "The Gift & The Star," which retails for just $12.97. That is a steal! Buuuuuut, Julie and Tom have been so sweet to offer you readers here a 20% off code! Just click here to purchase and type "BRITTANY20" in the discount code box to receive your percentage off!

In "The Gift," the class throws a "Happy Birthday Jesus" party when an unexpected visitor shows up. The kids learn about the true meaning of Christmas and the three things followers of Christ can learn from a gift. In "The Star" (a special double episode), the class performs the nativity in their annual Christmas play. Everything is going great until one of the characters, Twitch, disappears and the class must hurry and find him before the play begins. Along the way, the kids learn about the birth of Jesus and the three great lessons from the stars. What a great way to teach kiddos the true meaning of the season!




Be sure to follow Owlegories on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and YouTube! To view and purchase their DVDs and new plush toys, click here.

Linking up with Annie and Natalie 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

What's Up Wednesday: October 2016

Happy Wednesday! Let's recap the month of October, shall we? 


As is custom for the last Wednesday of the month, I'm linking up with Mel, Sheaffer and Shay for "What's Up Wednesday" to answer the following questions: 


{1} What We're Eating This Week 
I made a ton of yummy meals over the weekend, so we have some good leftovers to eat on early this week: homemade Sloppy Joe's; Pasta with Bacon, Asparagus, Shallots and Peas; and Shrimp and Grits Casserole. I'm still loving using the Walmart Grocery Pickup and I can't tell you how much time and money it has saved me. {Click here for $10 off your very first order!}




{2} What I'm Reminiscing About 
I'm thrilled to have Knox here and having him partake in his first "major" holiday, but I can't help but get a little teary-eyed when I look back at pictures of Walker from Halloween last year. I thought he was so big then, but my goodness, he's grown so much since then. It's true that the days are long, but the years are short. 


{3} What I'm Loving 
Y'all can read more about this in tomorrow's post, but I'm loving {well, technically Walker, but I'm loving, too!} "Owlegories!" More specifically, we're loving their brand new Christmas episodes, because YES, it's not even Halloween and we're already watching Christmas movies. Check back tomorrow for more information on this!


I'm also loving my new Aquage Dry Shampoo that I posted about on Friday. This stuff smells amazing and works wonders. It's definitely a favorite! 


{4} What We've Been Up To 
It's insane to me how fast -- yet sometimes so slow -- our days go. Here's a breakdown of the boring life of a stay-at-home mom...you've been warned! Ha! 

Monday, I took the boys over to see my in-law's. My mother-in-law actually had surgery on her hand yesterday, so I wanted her to see them and play with them before she won't be able to for a while. 


Tuesday was a school day for Walker, so Knox tagged along with me to early vote! Please, please, please get out and vote; if you don't vote, you can't complain! It seriously took me about five minutes from start to finish; I swear it took me longer to get Knox in and out of the car than it did to exercise my constitutional right! ;)

 
Today we have Bible Study and plan to run a bunch of errands afterward; tomorrow is another school day for Walker and I am excited to have lunch with my sweet friend Gentel, who is in town for a conference; and Friday we're meeting some friends at a local park. I'm telling you: riveting stuff. ;) 

{5} What I'm Dreading 
This sounds awful, but I'm so ready for this presidential election to be over and done with. I'll officially be able to watch the news without getting frustrated, and we can all just move on with our lives. Woosah!



{6} What I'm Working On 
I'm typically one of those people who buys Christmas presents throughout the year to save money, but I still have a few more gifts to go. I'm trying to "make my list and check it twice" to ensure everyone has something, and I'm also currently getting stocking stuffers for the boys. Walker is seriously all about Christmas this year {now that he's finally at an age to understand it}, so I have to make it everything he's dreaming about! Christmas through a child's eyes truly is magical. 

{7} What I'm Excited About 
Halloween on Monday! I'm a bit nervous about Knox hating his costume, but I know Walker will just love his {and he better since he requested it THIS SUMMER}. He's really the absolute perfect age for holidays this year, so hearing him say, "Trick-or-Treat!" and talking about the experience is awesome. I'm also excited about and looking forward to Thanksgiving and Christmas! I may or may not have already busted out my Amy Grant Christmas CD...

{8} What I'm Watching/Reading 
We're currently still enjoying "This is Us," [ALL THE FEELS!!!] "Dancing with the Stars," "Designated Survivor," "Modern Family," and our good ol' standby: "Dateline." Oh, and of course I'm still binge-ing "Blue Bloods" and any of the Real Housewives series during the boys' naptime or when Brandon travels. :) I'm really looking forward to "The Crown" premiering on Netflix next week! 


As for reading, I'm really only delving into the Book of John as part of my BSF study. I can really only read one thing at a time, and that totally counts! 
 

{9} What I'm Listening To 
Like I said, Amy Grant's Christmas CD and Walker's little Christmas CD. Yes, I'm that annoying person who loves Christmas! #sorrynotsorry

{10} What I'm Wearing 
I've been pretty boring with my clothes lately and haven't bought anything new for myself in a while! I'm honestly just enjoying shopping in my own closet since I was pregnant this time last year. {Oh, and as I write, I'm wearing a pajama shirt with some spit-up on the shoulder. I'm high class, y'all!}

{11} What I'm Doing This Weekend 
I'm getting a much-needed haircut on Saturday, and I'm planning to get a pumpkin that we can carve into a jack-o-lantern for Walker. It's not officially Halloween to me until that happens! Other than that, a whole bunch of NOTHING, which will be much welcomed before a busy November.

{12} What I'm Looking Forward to Next Month 
Thanksgiving! I just love Thanksgiving: a time to get together with family without the pressure and stress of gifts; just relax, eat and enjoy each other's company. I'm also looking forward to my sweet friend Laura's wedding that I'm in and can't wait to see her as a bride!

Also linking up with Jessi and Jenn 

  

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Easy Recipe Files: Crock Pot Lemon Chicken

When I posted the below photo to Snapchat and Instagram stories last week, I got so many messages from y'all asking to share the recipe! I kind of laughed because A) I totally saw it on April's blog and thought, "Mmmm, that looks yummy! I'll try it!" and B) It's so ridiculously easy. I love those easy, no-fuss meals and I'm happy to share this one with you!

So here's the recipe for Slow Cooker Italian Lemon Chicken, which I served over brown rice {y'all, just the Minute brand!}, and with sautĂ©ed spinach and mashed white beans. 

For the spinach, I just get some good olive oil hot in a pan, add a couple cloves of minced garlic, and two (12 oz.) bags of baby spinach. I just let the spinach wilt, squeeze half a lemon over it, salt and pepper and voilá! 

For the mashed white beans {which I also saw on April's blog but modified using what we had on hand}, I just warm two cans of white beans on the stove, adding in a bit of chicken stock and some rosemary sprigs. Once they're warm, I use my potato masher to mash the beans somewhat, then salt and pepper them. Easy as pie!


Enjoy!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Weekending

We had a fun-filled weekend full of spending time with family! I'm bummed Monday is already here; don't the weekend days just seem to fly by?! I need another day between Saturday and Sunday. ;) 

-FRIDAY we...

+ Met my friend Stacy and her kiddos Silas and Marlee at a local park. It was an absolutely gorgeous fall day, and we were excited to spend some time outdoors with our sweet friends! 



+ Had a lazy afternoon and evening, which was welcomed after a crazy week! Brandon brought home some barbeque and some yummy sides from Babe's, and we feasted on that for supper. 

+ Started Season 1 of "24," which is so ridiculously addicting!  


-SATURDAY we...

+ Went to my niece, Ellie Kate's, third birthday fiesta! We had fun celebrating the sweet birthday girl, and the weather was absolutely perfect to have the party outside on my sister- and brother-in-law's back patio. 




This is the same picture, a little over two years apart: Walker on the left and Knox on the right. Apparently their Aunt Becca just tastes so good! ;)

+ Had my in-law's over spontaneously after the party for supper. I made these easy, yummy homemade Sloppy Joe's and they were a hit!

Walker working with Mimi to circle his Christmas list in the Toys 'R' Us catalog

-SUNDAY we...

+ Had a lazy morning before church watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" {again}. Loved seeing these three boys cuddled up together! 


+ Went to church, came home and had leftovers for lunch, and Brandon and "Walker" mowed the backyard. 

 
+ Watched some football on TV and got a lot of things done around the house: laundry, dishes, cleaning and meal prep. 

+ Made this for supper and called it an early night to ensure we were ready to tackle this week head-on! 

Linking up with Biana