So many families are good about taking family photos every single year, sadly we are not one of them. It’s not that I don’t want the photos, (Because if you really know me, you should know how much I LOVE photos.) but it has been more of a budget/cost thing. The least thing I have wanted to do is to spend “big bucks” for a limited amount of photos, that I may not love, when I have a perfectly capable camera in my very own hands.
Usually every other year I realize the photos really need updated, suck it up and book an appointment. But this year we chose to go another route. Instead of paying someone to take photos for us, we decided to trade with a friend. I’d take pictures of her family, she’d take them of mine. Worst case scenario they don’t turn out and neither of us lose a thing.
We picked a day, picked outfits and met on a Sunday for family photo shoots. I took the photos of mine that I could, she did hers and we took photos for the other person as well. It was perfection. We both got some really great shots and it only cost our time.
Here are a few of my favorites
I received this product in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are mine alone.
I know people joke about the arrival of November bringing all things Christmas. Some people embrace it with open arms, others cringe in disbelief. I try to find balance somewhere in the middle.
For me the key to getting the most out of the holidays is the preparation that I do from November 1st until Thanksgiving day. If I am prepared, planned and ready to celebrate my favorite season of all, we thrive. If I procrastinate and don’t make preparations, chaos consumes us all December long.
At our house November isn’t about celebrating our favorite season as much as it is about preparing for it. Today I want to talk to you about a few ways we are preparing our hearts,and our home, for the upcoming Christmas season.
Let’s take a look at what I completed…
* Successfully complete my mini fall photo challenge.
* Share 3 or 4 fall recipes on the blog.
* Continue to show myself grace when it comes to blogging. Really embrace that for me less is more & bigger isn’t always better.
* Work on our fall fun list together. See my list update here!
* Take some fall family photos.
* Weekly long runs starting with 12 mile runs and building off of that.
* Work out at least 14 times.
* Take care of my body to hopefully stay injury free during the craziness of marathon training. More water, stretching & a good post run recovery routine.
* Start using the First 5 app.
* Plan a girls night with the ladies from church.
* Get out of the house with our school work 5 times.
* Continue working on brush piles mountains out at the land.
* Finalize costume plans by the middle of the month!
* Be more diligent and organized about working on our budget multiple times a week.
* Send some fall snail mail.
And what I didn’t …
Hello friends! I guess it is perfect timing that week five, the grand finale, of my October pumpkin recipe craziness ends on Halloween.
It was so much fun sharing all of the pumpkin things with you this past month!
My final pumpkin recipe is a cookie recipe. The girls and I have been buying pumpkin white chocolate chip cookies at a bakery this fall and last week we attempted to create our own version.
We started with my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe, and tweaked a few things. On our second attempt we found a winner. These cookies are soft, chewy and the perfect fall twist on traditional chocolate chip cookies.
It’s the third month of ‘Five Things Friday‘ on the blog today!
Once a month, on the fourth Friday, I talk about five things that are bringing me joy. It’s a great way to count my blessings and practice a little bit of optimism in a pessimistic world. It does my heart so much good to focus on what is making me smile and getting me through my days. Because let’s be honest, some days are harder than others and finding those little joys in life can make all the difference!
Here are my October 5!
It’s crazy to think that I shared our Fall Family Fun list well over 6 weeks ago and it just now feels like the fall weather has arrived. So much of our fall felt like summer and we struggled to mark anything off of our list for the first month. But regardless of that, our list is about halfway done. Today I wanted to share our progress and a few fall photos we’ve taken along the way too.
What we’ve done so far…
Go on a hayride
Halloween Movie Night (we’ve had 2)
Attend a Fall Party (we attended 3)
Get lost in a corn maze
Bake a pumpkin treat (One, Two, Three, Four and counting…)
Hot Rod Reunion at MoKan
Bonfire & S’mores (I think the bonfire night count is at 3)
Try a new soup recipe