We still have a little over a week until October 31st and I am going to get you all set for Halloween! From costumes, to treats, to fun party ideas.
Bret and I are not huge Halloween people, but it is a fun holiday! Getting dressed up, seeing all the cute kiddos, and any excuse to eat some treats, right?
- First, I wanted to share the treats I will be making for my office next week: Candy Corn Rice Krispy Treats and Halloween Blondies. You’re welcome in advance, PCO.
- If you’re in the market for quality halloween make-up, scroll through this list from POPSUGAR.
- If you still don’t know what you are going to dress up as, here is a list of 31 Insanely Clever Last-Minute costumes. The Brawny Guy! Haha!
- And if you’re last minute with your pumpkins too, don’t even worry! Uber now has a service that will bring you pumpkins, a carving kit, and treats from your local Pumpkin Patch on demand. Check it out!
- Then host a Pumpkin Carving Contest and Chili Cook-off. I give you permission to use my Turkey Chili recipe. 😉
- I have a feeling Bret would LOVE the Zombie Crawl! If haunted houses scare you, maybe something with zombies is better…or maybe it’s worse, haha! Surprisingly, I love the show The Walking Dead, so zombie stuff just doesn’t get to me. Anyway, this will be the one “scary” thing I’ll insert into this Happy Halloween List.
- Okay, wait, I lied. One more scary thing…but for kiddos! How cool is this Worm Ice? I know I would have thought this was super creepy and fun when I was a kid.
- Maybe you’re the small-town Halloween type person? Doesn’t The Pioneer Woman’s Halloween look so fun! I love that they went to a nursing home.
- It wouldn’t be Halloween without the Plastic Pumpkin Bucket for Trick-or-Treating.
- And if you want to hand out something special and healthy this Halloween, Elana’s Pantry is your one stop shop.
Have a Happy Halloween, friends!
p.s. If I wanted to spend bunches of my money on candy, I would pass these amazing truffles out to everyone!
Should I really be blogging on our date night? No. No, I shouldn’t.
But here we go because I have to keep writing to complete the challenge! Plus, my husband encouraged me to get it out of the way now. I can’t imagine why. 😉
Tonight’s list is simple and very relevant to the moment we’re living – what to order at Benihana:
- Cocktails. A plus on any date night. Mine has strawberries and bourbon so, yes, it’s delicious.
- A sushi roll. Tonight we are enjoying a Sumo Roll. It’s also delicious!
- The Surf Side meal. How can you do better than scallops, calamari, and shrimp? You can’t.
- Bret always gets the chicken fried rice. It’s so yummy and watching the chef make it in front of you is a great show!
- Make sure you get the green tea ice cream at the end.
Keep in mind: we are pulling out all the stops with this dinner because our cell phone provider sent us a debit card loaded for fun! Don’t ask me why because we don’t know why either, but we are living it up!
Such a cool list, right!? Haha…okay, goodnight for now – until tomorrow!
I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen. – Ernest Hemingway
No siren did ever so charm the ear of the listener as the listening ear has charmed the soul of the siren. – Henry Taylor
This post is all about what I have been listening to lately. What we hear and what we choose to take in affects our state of mind, our mood, and our enjoyment. In the best cases, it spurs us on. I hope this following list can enrich your mind, bless your heart, and just make things fun!
- This Glorious Grace by Austin Stone Worship
- Grownups Read Things They Wrote as Kids (disclaimer – language/heavy topics at times)
- 1989 by Ryan Adams
- Ask Pastor John Podcast
- Gossip In The Grain by Ray LaMontagne
- The Jamie Ivey Podcast
- Radical by David Platt
- Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
- Parenthood Season Finale playlist
- Front Porch with The Fitzs
This list is changing week-to-week and month-to-month, but it really made me think how much I listen to on a daily basis. I am definitely trying to listen to the Bible more on my ESV app as well.
What do you listen to? I’d love to hear all about it. 😉
A few years ago, my close friend Susan invited me over for a craft day. We drank her most refreshing homemade lavender lemonade, ate paleo snickerdoodles, and assembled Joy Journals together. I can sill remember that day so vividly because I was just beginning my friendship with Susan. Susan has always been a friend that pushes me towards Jesus, reminds me of the power of prayer, and keeps me accountable to growing in discipleship.
Susan is a true friend for so many reasons. Making Joy Journals with her that day always reminds me of how our friendship began – following Jesus. A life following Jesus is a life filled with joy. And that is the intention of keeping a Joy Journal – reminding yourself that Jesus is our joy. Writing down every possible thing that brings you joy reminds you of how loving and sovereign our God is. Sometimes it’s a sunset; sometimes it’s a friend to pray with; sometimes it’s folding laundry and listening to music; sometimes it’s a trial that brings suffering. All the time, it’s knowing that God is by your side, faithfully present with you through all of it.
The Bible has a lot to say about joy and how to practice it.
- Psalm 95:2 – Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
- Colossians 3:17 – And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
- Philippians 4:6 – do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
- 1 Thessalonians 5:18 – give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
So today I thought I would share a few things that brought me joy, thankfulness, and helped me to worship Jesus. Some may sound trite, but they are real ways that I have been loved by God today.
- A morning latte with a little honey
- Running work errands – getting out in the sunshine
- Walking during my 15 minute breaks
- Times of prayer throughout the day
- Reminders of the desire for children
- Relying on God for my strength and leading
- Really spicy Indian food for lunch
- A good annual review at work today. Encouragement in my work was such a blessing.
- Laundry to fold – clothes to wear
- Having the time to bake blondies after work for my Community Group
- Having a Community Group that we love to attend
- My husband comes home to me every single day. He loves me and gives me hugs every time he walks through the door. This is a huge source of my joy and I praise God for displaying His faithfulness to me in this way.
What brings you joy in this day?!
So it’s 9pm, I am in my friends garage getting haircuts with another friend. It’s awesome… and I got bangs! Woohoo!
However, I’m so behind on today’s post, but I don’t want to give up! I’m committed to writing every day for each day in October.
Check out our haircuts and our awesome hair stylist (far left)! ❤
As we are sitting here getting our hairs cut and styled we are talking about so many funny things: high school, body spray, our sweet and hilarious husbands, traditions, and lots of TMI…all the stuff! And here I am asking them what to post about. We decided on guilty pleasure chick flicks and BOY have we got a list for you (Thank you Melissa & Ashley)! So load up your Netflix or Amazon app and get ready for this wonderfully awesome cheeseball of a list. 31 movies for 31 days. Maybe this will bring back some fun memories for you all!
- Dirty Dancing
- Cinderella Story
- John Tucker Must Die
- Drive Me Crazy
- Father of the Bride (1 & 2)
- Troop Beverly Hills
- Save the Last Dance
- Bring It On
- She’s All That
- Sixteen Candles
- Step Up 1-6
- Mean Girls
- The Proposal
- Miss Congeniality
- Letters to Juliet
- Dear John
- The Wedding Singer
- The Princess Diaries
- How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days
- How to Win a Date with Tad Hamilton
- 13 Going on 30
- He’s Just Not That Into You
- Just Friends
- 10 Things I hate About You
- Sweet Home Alabama
- Never Been Kissed
- 27 Dresses
- 50 First Dates
- The Holiday
- A Walk to Remember
Our church, The Fields, is going through the book of Daniel right now. The tagline is “faithful living in difficult days”. I don’t think this teaching series could have come at a better time. Not just for me, but for so many of my friends and family.
It just seems to be a season of difficult times, trials, suffering, testing, heart break, and waiting…for so many of us. If you feel like you’re in that season too, I want to present some encouragement and truth to you all today and hope that it brings a peace and comfort beyond understanding.
- But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
- “It is finished,”… John 19:30
- Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. Psalm 103: 2-5
- Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting! Psalm 139: 23-24
- See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure. 1 John 3: 1-3
- Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Philippians 3:12
- You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? Then my enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me? Psalm 56: 8-11
- I am feeble and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart. O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you. Psalm 38: 8-9
- Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord! O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy! If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand? But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared. I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope; my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning. O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with him is plentiful redemption. And he will redeem Israel from all his iniquities. Psalm 130:1-8
- There is a God in heaven… Daniel 2: 28
- I am the Lord, and there is no other, besides me there is no God; I equip you, though you do not know me, that people may know, from the rising of the sun and from the west, that there is none besides me; I am the Lord, and there is no other. I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the Lord, who does all these things. Isaiah 45: 5-7
- And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. Colossians 1: 17
- Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever! 1 Chronicles 16: 34
- As for me, I shall behold your face in righteousness; when I awake, I shall be satisfied with your likeness. Psalm 17: 15
- But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. Acts 20: 24
Jesus loves His children so much. So much that he gave his life for them. We did everything to deserve death and nothing to deserve life. But Jesus didn’t give us what we deserve. He gave us grace. He gave us His own righteousness and faith. Jesus came and died so that we may have life and have it abundantly, and abundant life comes only from knowing Jesus. There is no greater aim.
The philosopher and novelist Umberto Eco said that lists help us to make sense of the world around us. We create lists of the sights we see on vacation, the places we want to visit, the food we need to buy at the grocery store, and the tasks we need to get done. It’s a simple habit of increasing our day-to-day productivity.
We pack all the madness and ambiguity of life into a structured form of writing. In short, making lists is a great way to increase our overall happiness and feel less overwhelmed.
(Source: B.B. Cooper)
I can definitely say that is true for myself. Lists not only help me stay organized and structured, but they are fun. Being organized is fun for me! That’s sounds crazy, right?
But seriously, this may sound neurotic to the more artistic and free-spirited type, and maybe it is, but, nonetheless, lists are a form of self-expression for me. Hence, “i love lists”.
Maybe you can relate? If so, I have provided a list that can help you in all your list-making!
- For your reminders: a collection of Fun Sticky Notes and Simple Sticky Notes.
- For just a normal “TO-DO” list, there are a few cute ones: Simple, Abstract, and Personalized.
- For the dreamer, I thought this Mixed Priorities set of list pads would be helpful.
- For those who like to plan out their entire week: Week List for your desk.
- For your grocery shopping list: a Market List pad in black & white and a Market List pad in Color. Also, an All Out Of pad.
- For listing out your weekly meal plans: A Meal Calendar for 3 weeks at a time and a Meal Calendar for 1 week at a time.
- Lastly, this is just for fun…but these seem like the perfect on-the-go games for all you lovely list makers out there.
I hope you enjoyed the links and get your listing on!
Today actaully feels like fall! Grey skies, wet pavement, warm drinks, and comfort food cravings. For the first time in weeks I have goosebumps rather than sweating into a puddle.
To be honest, fall is not my most favorite of the seasons, BUT it most definitely has it’s perks. I wanted to share with you some of my fall favorites in hopes of getting excited for the season ahead. Feel free to copy me – let’s be twinsies!
- Emily Jones has a great “Essentials” print she designed for you to hang in your home for each and every season. How cute is this one for the fall!?
- I know we all love Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes, but I would have to argue that Peets Coffee makes a better one. It’s richer and less sweet…which is just better!
- I got the cutest long-sleeve dress for fall from Old Navy. SO comfy and great with boots or flats. There’s maroon and navy blue option. Grab it now while it’s on sale!
- It wouldn’t be fall without a visit to Julian Pie Co. and an Apple Farm for you-pick bags of apples and fresh pressed cider. Then of course you have to use those apples to make your own homemade apple pie and apple spice ice cream!
- Some other fall favorite locations are Downtown Idyllwild and Bates Nut Farm. A new activity for us this year will be the Temecula Corn Maze!
- Pumpkin Carving is always so fun! Tonight and next weekend we have pumpkin carving parties to attend. And if you are a jack-o-lantern enthusiast, I heard that the SD Safari Park does a whole walk through display called Rise of the Jack-o-Lanterns that’s fantastic.
- This one is a favorite of many, far and wide: Trader Joe’s pumpkin spiced everything. Even pumpkin body butter! Get on that…it won’t last forever.
- There’s something about the fall and going to the movies, right? I like getting all layered up, going out to dinner, and seeing a movie with Bret.
- The fall is great for comfort food: soups, pasta, root vegetables, and breads. Some of our favorite fall recipes come from my Cookbook Collection. If your cookbooks don’t match up with mine, there’s always Pinterest for menu inspriation.
- Lastly, if you need a good Pumpkin Spice Coffee Cake or Pumpkin Spice Ice Cream recipe, I made ones that were a favorite for our family.
I could have kept going with this list…there are alot of fall favorites out there. Maybe I like the fall season more than I thought I did?!
What are your fall favorites!? Boots, recipes, locations, activities?
Coffee! Coffee! Coffee! – Loreli Gilmore
…and no she wasnt asking for 3 separate cups of coffee.
She, like so many of us, is just unashamedly excaliming how much she needs and loves her morning coffee. We, like Loreli Gilmore, just love our coffee, right!? While most of us have some kind of coffee/espresso maker in our homes, there is something so special about coffee shops. Maybe it’s just me, but I love going IN to coffee shops. The smell, the sounds, the drinks, and the people. Come to think of it, I don’t actually feel like I visited a city/location unless I’ve tried one of their local coffee shops. It’s a simple thing that actually brings me a lot of comfort and adventure.
I’m no coffee connoisseur and definitely not a coffee snob, BUT I have had quite a few bad cups of coffee and that makes finding the right coffee shop such a priority. Below are a list of shops that I’ve been to that were not just good but GREAT. Some amazing! Then I have a shop at the end of the list that I would like to go to, but haven’t made it just yet. Please enjoy and please go visit these if you’re a local.
- This one is for all the coffee snobs and hipsters out there: COFFEE & TEA COLLECTIVE. Great atmosphere and even better coffee.
- The one I visit most often is LOFTY COFFEE CO.
- SImple & delicious. ZUMBAR COFFEE & TEA
- This one goes under the radar, but over delivers time and time again: IRONSMITH COFFEE ROASTERS. Really cool roll up doors and design too.
- This place was a little parking lot drive thru turned big trendy store front. They’re honeybee latte is so yummy! BETTER BUZZ COFFEE
- This probably sounds crazy…but WHOLE FOODS MARKET COFFEE & TEA makes a good cup of cold brew. So I wanted it on the list.
- This one is over by my dad’s house in downtown Escondido. I like their vibes and they always make my order just right! KETTLE COFFEE & TEA.
- San Clemente’s best coffee: ELLIE’S TABLE. Ocean view, wide open windows, and incredible baked goods/lunch items. A favorite all around.
- CON PANE is pretty new for me, but it was one of those shops I just wanted to sit, read, and sip coffee all day. Which is similar to how I feel about # 8 ^^^.
- There is a cool collective of shops on India Street by the SD Airport and inside is JAMES COFFEE CO. Your barista may intimidate you, but they’ll make the heck out of a cup of coffee. Added bonus: f you like the sound of airplanes – this is your spot.
- INTELIGENTSIA COFFEE for the real coffee experience. Cappucino all the way. Or pour over. Or americano. Or…i don’t know. Maybe all of it all day so I can’t sleep…which definitely never happened to me. 😉
- The next shop I plan to check out is REVOLUTION ROASTERS. They’re set up right next door to our friends candle shop in Oceanside! Maybe this weekend.
What did I miss!? Please tell me your favorite coffee stops/shops.
I knew writing for 31 days straight would be a challenge! I keep trying to write my post the night before the day I should post…but it just doesn’t seem to happen. Life is very FULL. That’s what we like to call it – FULL rather than busy.
Anyhow, I am attempting to write this post in 10 minutes or less because we are off to a Florence and The Machine concert tonight at SDSU. We are SO excited! We saw her 3 years ago and knew from that point on we will see Florence Welch every time she hits San Diego no matter what. Her voice is unreal and the show is magical.
This was us 3 years ago heading down to SD just like we will be doing tonight. We will have to take another car selfie as tradition. Things I’m excited for tonight:
- Spending hours and hours with the best guy in the world.
- Eating a yummy dinner…something fresh as I always like to say.
- Singing at the top of my lungs with the best guy in the world.
- Seeing all the hipsters all dressed up.
- Holding hands with the best guy in the world.
- Sitting in the stadium at SDSU will be cool! I’ve never been before.
- Laughing at the inevitable hilarious jokes told by the best guy in the world.
- Lisitening to Florence on the car ride home like we did 3 years ago.
- Kissing goodnight with the best guy in the world.
- Nodding off to sleep still seeing all the magic that Florence and The Machine created for us.
There are so many shows out there. Some great, some okay, and some pretty darn bad!
The Office, Hart of Dixie, Parks & Recreation, and Gilmore Girls are shows I always come back to. But my husband is going to go crazy if I go through Hart of Dixie one more time…because it would probably be the 6th or 7th time…yikes!
All that to say, I want some new shows. Variety is always welcome in my life. Below is a list of shows that either I have heard are good or that I know are really good because I have already started watching bits and pieces of them. I just hope it starts raining soon so I’ll want to stay inside and cuddle up for a few hours of Netflix binging.
- Chefs Table
- Friday Night Lights
- The Great British Baking Show
- Fixer Upper
- Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics
- The Time in Between
What are your favorite shows/binge watchlist on Netflix? Or hulu/amazon?
If you saw my post last weekend, then you are hopefully still using the list of remedies I gave you for the indian summer we’re still having in San Diego. This heat is brutal. Which is why I’m sitting in front of my fan with a cold drink and about to make sandwiches for dinner.
While I’m not suggesting that you turn on your oven, I am suggesting you day dream about the following 10 cookie recipes. Long for them, fantasize about the magnificent flavors, then in a couple weeks…bake them all! You know people will eat them. People love sugar…so just go crazy and bake. I chose to make a list of cookies because they are one of my favorite desserts and are usually pretty simple. These recipes can be trusted…no pinterest fail here!
- Smitten Kitchen Black & White Cookies
- Barefoot Contessa Salty Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Cookies
- Barefoot Contessa Pecan Shortbread
- Pioneer Woman Citrus Butter Cookies
- Momofuku Milk Bar Marshmallow Cornflake Cookies
- Sarah Theis Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Joy the Baker Vanilla Bean Confetti Cookies
- White on Rice Couple Brown Sugar Butterscotch Slice & Bake Cookies
- Food 52 Salted Chocolate Espresso Brookies
- Martha Stewart Snickerdoodle Cookies
Sundays. They’re some of the best days. Some people call Sundays the Lord’s Day.
Every day should center around the praise and worship of God. Every day we should wake up with grateful and humble hearts before our Maker, rejoicing that His mercies are new every morning. So, what’s so special about Sundays?
Sundays are special because it is a day that you can gather with other believers of God and worship Jesus TOGETHER. Gathering on Sunday morning is one particular expression of a life lived in continual worship of God. Scripture tells us to gather and to hear the reading of Scripture, to feast on the preaching and teaching of the Word. We can be singing hymns, praying together, and preparing our hearts to serve God in the week ahead. Sundays prepare us for a life lived in community and remind us of God’s amazing Gospel.
I have the distinct honor and pleasure of being married to a man gifted with musical abilities and leadership. I love how he leads our church family in songs of praise and worship to our King and Savior. He tries to pick songs that fit well with the Scripture we are going through. He also tries to pick songs that will stick with us throughout the week so we are encourging our hearts with melodies of truth and the Gospel. Today, I thought I’d share with you the music set he put together for The Fields this Sunday. So many people were encouraged by the theology of each song. It was a blessing for my heart as well.
Here’s the set and a link to the versions of each song on YouTube.
- Before the Throne
- All Creatures
- We are Here for You
- Behold our God
- Oh God
- Though You Slay Me
- Psalm 145
Please listen to each of the above songs and be blessed! Pray about the Lord’s Day – for the service, the music, the pastors, your own family, and yourself. Ask that the Lord be glorified and that there would be great expectation and anticipation for the gathering. Ask that each Sunday – and every day – would be all about Jesus. Amen.
Happy Saturday, friends!
It’s back with a vengance. This years’ indian summer has lasted longer then any that I remember. The 80, 90, and 100 degree weather has been consistent through October. So what can we do to beat it? I have a list for that.
- Go to the beach! Dive in, lay out, read a book, repeat.
- Make popsicles! Shutterbean has a great list of fruity and boozy ones.
- Take a hike out at Torrey Pines. The ocean breeze is incredible.
- Drink iced tea. Lots and lots of iced tea. If you need a recipe, I have a refreshing mint one you could try!
- Find some big trees, lay down a blanket, read more books, and drift off.
- Don’t use your oven. Make salads, sliced cheese, fruit. Maybe get the grill going.
- Walk around the mall with your favorite iced coffee drink.
- Set your self up in front of the fan with your colored pencils and coloring book. They’re not just for kids anymore. Check out this one from papersource!
- Head down to your local pool for a night swim.
- Hawaiian shaved ice or frozen yogurt is always a good idea.
- Go see a movie and eat popcorn for dinner.
- It’s an excuse to take things slow and rest. So, do that – REST!
How are you spending this indian summer day?
The weekend is apon us! That means movie nights, beach days, evening bbqs, birthday parties, football games, and midnight…snacks!
This post ia all about snacks. Sticky, salty, sweet, spicy. Yum! Whether you need a snack to bring to a get together or chow down on while watching another Hunger Games movie, here’s your list.
- Treat corn: popcorn with m&m’s & chocolate covered pretzels.
- Orange cranberry chex mix
- Sharp cheddar cheese crackers
- Coconut date rolls
- Seedy crackers, pepper jelly, sliced white cheddar cheese
- Veggie slices with homemade ranch & hummus.
- Dark chocolate dipped apricots
- Sliced apples & almond butter OR cookie butter!
- Lemon parmesan black pepper popcorn
- Pear slices with goat cheese
- Oatmeal cookie granlola on vanilla yogurt
- Raspberries with fresh whip cream
- Trix on a stick (but you could use any puff ceral you like)
- Hike trail mix
- Honey mustard roasted cashews
Get to snackin’!