October 31, 2012

Visiting the Pumpkin Patch

Making a yearly visit to the pumpkin patch is one of my favorite Fall activities to do. Now, I'm sure our Arizona pumpkin patch looks a little different than yours but it's still so much fun none the less. I do however have lofty dreams of traveling back to the Midwest someday and visiting family and taking all the cousins together to the pumpkin patch.


Last weekend we headed out after Ava woke up from her nap. I've been to a few places here in Phoenix and MacDonald's Ranch is by far my fave! It's a little bigger than most here in Phoenix, and I think they have more activities to offer in the admission prices than most do like a petting zoo, horse rides, a hayride out to the "pumpkin patch", and varied entertainment on certain weekends. You can find out more about them by visiting their website here.  (I'm not paid nor affiliated with them, just highly recommend them.)



First stop we took the hayride out to see and pick out our pumpkins. We let Ava get two small ones. One for her and one for baby brother. She had a lot of fun picking out the perfect ones.




This year she was big enough to ride the horses. I wasn't sure how she'd do, would she cry or be afraid or love it? To my surprise she loved it, and didn't want to get off when her turn was over. My girl is brave and independent for sure.



{Ava's dress c/o Lottie Da Baby}

Do you visit the pumpkin patch every year? What are you favorite Fall activities? 
Tell me in the comments below. 

Happy Halloween {Our Little Bumble Bee}

Happy Halloween Everyone!

This year Ava is a cute as can "bee" Bumble Bee!




I won a giveaway from Sweet Rose Studio a couple months back and included was a credit to this store Jack and Molly. She makes beautiful handmade tutus and costumes. I choose this cute bumble bee one for Ava and knew it would make for the cutest Halloween costume!

What are your kiddos going to "bee" today?

Cute little video of my little bee buzzing into daycare this morning. 


October 29, 2012

Groopdealz Sale


I'm currently running a deal over at Groopdealz for your choice of 1 of 3 prints from my shop!

Choose 1 or choose all 3 your choice for 67% off what they would normally run in my shop!

If you're not familiar with Groopdealz think of it as Groupon for handmade goods!

They have daily deals for all kinds of handmade stuff. It's one of my fave sites to find unique gifts and jewelry and well as home decor. Go here to find out more and sign up!

October 26, 2012

A Date Night with Carrie Underwood

Last week I turned 30. For my birthday Hubby got me tickets to see Carrie Underwood in concert. I'd known that she was coming to town for a while and was dropping hints for months about going. He got a baby sitter lined up and everything, so off we went to celebrate my birthday!


We haven't been on a date night since our anniversary in July, and we both agreed after such a fun night that we need to make going out once a month more a priority. It's always fun getting out of the house for a night, having fun together and remembering exactly why he's my best friend!



I've been a fan of hers since she was on American Idol, I remember voting for her. She puts on a really great LIVE show, if you ever have the chance to go see her go! It was a lot of fun.



My hubby and I have seen a lot of musicals and plays together but never in 7 and a half years together have we ever been to a music concert together. So this was an extra special occasion together. A great start to year 30, thank you Husband!


#5 completed on the 30B430 list, check out the full list here. 

October 25, 2012

Packing & Moving Tips + A FREE Printable


We're deep in the throws of packing over here. This isn't my first time at the rodeo, so by this time I've gotten pretty good at this whole packing thing. There's always a ton of things that you don't use daily that can be packed up right away. Pack those things up first and fast I say. Also packing is a great time to purge anything you haven't used/seen/or worn in over a year. Get rid of it before taking it to your new place to collect more dust.


One thing I'm doing differently this go around is labeling my boxes better. Rather than just putting a generic "kitchen" label on the box I want to know exactly what's in that box. I think this helps to better identify if you need to unpack that box right away. Wouldn't you rather know exactly which box your linens are in than having to open every box that says "bedroom?" Yes, I thought so.


In order to help this possible chaos I created a printable that I could just fill out and tape to every box I pack. Label it by what room  you're packing up, and how many boxes there are for each room. Then add the contents inside.


Wanna print off a stack of your own? Simply click here download the print for free and get packing! 

October 24, 2012

miracles & blessings.

I've been thinking a lot lately about miracles and blessings. Some so small they would only matter to me and my family. Some so big that they are impacting others. I'm seeing great and amazing things happen in the lives of people around me that love God with all their hearts and serve him.

It's so easy to serve, tithe and pray when things in life are going amazing. When our kids are all obeying like they should, when our jobs and home lives are spectacular and we couldn't ask for more. But, I know it's been true for my own life that it's been hard to follow and serve Christ when things are falling apart. When you find yourself in valley. When things are going wrong in every area of your life and you're wishing that it would pass soon and you could get a break from the chaos you feel.

I know this to be true because I've felt it in my own life.

Source: etsy.com via Andrea on Pinterest

We've been in a couple valley seasons over the last few years. In impossible situations where we just didn't know where to turn. But we were faithful and we turned to Christ during those times. We still prayed. We cried out to God more than ever. We still obeyed. We still tithed even when there didn't seem like there was much to give.

And God always provided. Financially, spiritually, and emotionally. He poured into us because we drew closer to him. No, it wasn't always easy. Sometimes it was down right hard. Sometimes there was resistance. Where resistance ended faith began. Sometimes a blind faith like I don't know what you're doing here Lord but I know you're doing something so I will be faithful kinda faith.

As we've been faithful we've seen God be faithful to us. Not always in our timing, actually never really in the time we wanted it. And I've come to realize that God's timing is always better than my own and I've grown to be patient and wait on God.

Here's the thing about producing fruit; sometimes it takes time to grow. And the other truth is that it's hard to wait, isn't it?! But, when you do it's so worth the fruit you will bear and God's blessings that will follow. Through this season of life as we've been faithful we've seen miracles and blessings come our way. It's been amazing to see.

I realized that I need to expect more miracles from God. Expect that those people I've been praying for one day they will come to know the Lord. Expect that the situations I've been praying for will be resolved, and know that my prayers are heard. I think sometimes I pray out of habit and routine and God's really challenged me to expect more.

More from HIM.

More from my faith.

More from my obedience and servant hood.

Expect more blessings, more miracles.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be the glory in the church and in Christ throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Eph 3:20-21

God is ready to do more than we think. He is able to do more than what we ask. We have to ask first though, we have to be obedient first, we have to be willing vessels.

Are you ready to do more, go deeper, have more faith, expect more miracles and blessings from your Heavenly Father who loves you? 

October 22, 2012

Buffalo Style Chicken Pizza


My husband loves spicy foods, we recently had buffalo chicken pizza at one of our favorite restaurants. It was so good, I decided to try and re create this at home. Here's my version of a classic fave, I made two small personal pizzas but you could also do this method with the same measurements with a medium size pizza crust.


Cut up in 1 inch cubes 1 chicken breast. I used my grill pan, but you could also just fry up the chicken till cooked all the way through. Set aside. I used pre made crust. My faves are the mini personal size ones from Trader Joe's, but I've also use Bobboli Crust before which you can get at any grocery store. 


Place your crusts on your baking sheets or pizza stone. You will need 1 tablespoon of ranch dressing and 1 tablespoon of Franks Buffalo Sauce. Pour onto your crust and mix together both with a spoon and spread all over the crust till covered. 


Next you'll take your chicken put it in a bowl and pour another tablespoon of buffalo sauce over chicken and stir coating the chicken. If you'd prefer it less spicy scale back on your sauce. Set aside. Chop up 4 green onions, separating the white parts from the green tops. Put all your white onion parts into the bowl with your chicken and mix together. 


Then you'll take your chicken mixture and spoon it over your pizza crusts. Evenly distributing this mixture over your pizza crusts if you're doing personal size pizzas. Then you'll take mozzarella cheese and pour it over the top, use as much or as little as you'd like. Then sprinkle the green onion parts over the cheese. 

Place in the oven at 435 degrees for 10-12 minutes. Plate and enjoy!! 



October 19, 2012

Spiced Chai Cupcakes

{Spiced Chai Cupcakes}

I'm excited to share with you today a yummy and simple cupcake recipe using few ingredients, and a new product I've found! You've heard of Cool Whip right? Well now I'd like to introduce you to Cool Whips other half Cool Whip Frosting! Oh, yes they have frosting now! What do I love about this stuff? Well, for starters it's every bit as delish as Cool Whip, but this frosting comes in three different flavors.


I grabbed two tubs of Vanilla Frosting for these cupcakes. 

(see more of my shopping experience here.)

Here's what you'll need to this cupcake recipe:
1 box Spice cake mix (and all the ingredients on the back of box)
2 tubs Cool Whip Vanilla Frosting (for 24 cupcakes)
1 table spoon instant Chai tea mix


Before you go any further, get yourself a helper! Make sure they are cute and love to lick the bowl afterwards! ;)

Mix cake mix according to directions, line muffin tin with cupcake liners. Pour batter into all your liners. Bake according to box directions, let cool completely.


Now, here's the fun part! One of the things that I loved about this product is that it's thicker than regular frosting so it holds up better than regular frosting, and is more stiff giving your cupcakes height and a more finished look like at professional bakeries.

Take you Cool Whip Vanilla Frosting and mix in 1 table spoon of Chai tea mix per tub. Mix in the instant Chia until it's well blended through out. 



Then place frosting inside a frosting bag and cut the end off so that you can pipe frosting onto your cupcakes. (using a Ziploc bag and clipping the end also works great)


Once you're done piping frosting onto all your cupcakes, take these chocolate straws (I got mine at World Market) and brake them in three parts and add them to the top of the cupcakes. I added mine off towards the side so they kinda looked like a "straw" coming out of the cupcakes. 


Spiced Chai Cupcakes2

TA-DA! You'll be left with totally sweet and awesome looking cupcakes that taste even better too!! They have just a hint of Chai in them with a great spice kick! Check out more awesome cupcakes & cakes on the Kraft Cool Whip Frosting Pinterest board here. #CoolWhipFrosting

I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This content has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Kraft Cool Whip.  #CoolWhipFrosting #CBias #SocialFabric I only choose to promote products and services that I feel are a good fit for my readers and blog.

October 18, 2012

30B430: Do 30 Random Acts of Kindness on my Birthday

A while ago I saw a post on Pinterest which brought me here. I was so inspired by her post about spending your birthday on others and doing random acts of kindness to celebrate your birthday. I don't know about you but I think kindness, manners and doing good things is just a lost art. People don't take the time anymore to do nice things for no reason.

I don't know about you but I'd love to challenge myself to bring more kindness into this world. Not just on my birthday but everyday. So for my 30th birthday I thought I'd start there, I challenged myself to do 30 random acts of kindness and spread this love & joy to others!

Kindness is free, it doesn't cost anything either. I kept my list pretty inexpensive for this reason. I wanted to show that there are plenty of things that you can do to spread kindness and love without spending a lot. Not that it's wrong to buy things for people to be nice but there's always a time and place for that I think.

Here's what I did on my birthday to celebrate and spread kindness to those around me.

1. I started the day giving away a shop discount over at my Etsy shop.
2. Left a note for the mail man at the mail boxes.
3. Left several notes in the women's bathroom with encouraging words to women & mothers.
4. Helped a sweet Mom at Target put back things on the shelves that her rowdy toddler knocked down, she was so humbled that I offered to help her.
5. Took back some stranded shopping carts and placed them back in the cart corral at Target.
6. Placed a few quarters at an arcade game for someone to play.
7. Put a few more quarters in the gumball machines at Wal-Mart.
8. Stopped to tell a Mom in Wal-Mart who's kid was screaming & crying that she was a good mom and that she was doing a good job. She cried and said thank you.
9. Paid for a nice lady's drink at Starbucks. She was floored and didn't understand why I wanted to pay for her drink, when I told her I just wanted to bless her she said thank you!
10. Baked cupcakes and gave them to my Hubby to take to work for his co-workers.
11. Took my neighbors trash to the dumpster for them.
12. Left a few quarters at the newspaper stand for someone to buy a newspaper.
13. Held open many doors for people every where I went that day Target, Starbucks, WalMart, the restaurant.
14. Left a bunch of $1 off coupons for someone else to use in the baby aisle at Target.
15. Gave the UPS man a bottle of water when he delivered my packages.
16. Picked up trash around my apartment complex.
17. Wrote a stack of encouraging notes to my friends and mailed them.
18. Told the lady helping me at Dunkin' Donuts that's she's always positive & has a great attitude. Because she really does and every time I go in she always, always has the best attitude!
19. Made some online donations to some of my fave charities.
20. Let several people on the road go in front of me that day, which if you know Phoenix traffic this is almost unheard of. :)
21. Wrote a note of encouragement to Ava's daycare teacher.
22. Helped someone in Target clean up the aisle when they ran into a paper towel display and knocked them over.
23. helped my neighbor clean their patio.
24. helped a lady at the store carry her bags to her car.
25. made a few phone calls about important estate stuff for my sister to save her time during her day.
26. gave our waiter at lunch an over the top tip for his great service to us.
27. sent a round of encouraging notes to my co workers, these ladies are so awesome!
28. I also gave away a free photo session from my photography business.
29. donated some books and toys to our church.
30. bought supplies for our church nursery.

To find out more about The Birthday Project click here.

Completes #2 & #30 from the list  

*update* I have completed all of the 30B430 list, but it'll probably take me till the end of the year to update the list and tell you all about each one. Bare with me, I can't wait to share! 


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