November Blogathon Blog Challenge

Hey friends!  I've got a fun announcement today that I sure hope you'll enjoy and take part in with me...looking at you fellow bloggers!

For the month of November (beginning this coming Monday 11/3), I'm hosting a "Blogathon" challenge to blog (almost) everyday of the month!  Why in November, you ask?  Why not in one of those slow months like June or July???

Well, here's why.  November and December are my highest traffic months...and I'm guessing it's similar for you too...due to gift guides, holiday-themed posts, and random traffic from Google or Pinterest searches.  So WHY NOT capitalize on that boost of traffic by blogging each day, upping your writing game, and hopefully hanging onto some of those new readers that come your way?!?

Secondly, we all need to just breathe a bit and reflect on our lives this time of year.  The holidays come fast and furious, and if you're like me, they whizz by leaving me wistful for something to hold on to.  Don't let this busy month fly by in whirl...let's intentionally put some memories, thoughts, stories into our blogging to enrich this season and help us remember what it's all about.  I promise it will be FUN!

So YOU IN???

Here are the prompts below (excluding weekends).  Of course you don't have to blog every single day, but I'll be here doing my thing all November and I'd love to have you on board!  Make sure to share your posts using the hashtag #NovemberBlogathon (because frankly I'm too lazy for a linkup) and tag me please (because that's good manners)...bonus points if you retweet/share friends' posts!  

>>>FALL State of Mind Week<<<
Monday 11/3 - There are 30 days in November, so share 30 facts about yourself.
Tuesday 11/4 - Share your go-to, favorite Fall recipe.
Wednesday 11/5 - Tell about your Fall or Holiday season traditions.
Thursday 11/6 - Get your craft a Fall craft...or link to your favorite Martha Stewart one!
Friday 11/7 - Tell us about your health/exercise routine.  Do you have one?  Tips?  What works for you?

>>>Week of BLOGGING Threes<<<
Monday 11/10 - Share your 3 favorite posts from your archives
Tuesday 11/11 - What are 3 of your blogging goals?
Wednesday 11/12 - Put yourself out there and do a vlog about whatever tickles your fancy.
Thursday 11/13 - If you could tell your novice blogger self 3 tips you wish you'd known...
Friday 11/14 - Introduce 3 blogs you read/frequent and tell why you enjoy them.

>>>Self-Reflection Week<<<
Monday 11/17 - Tell about your city/hometown...what to do there, little gems, best restaurants, etc.
Tuesday 11/18 - Write a "currently" posts using these prompts HERE.
Wednesday 11/19 - Write a letter of forgiveness to some one you've held a grudge against...leaving names out of course.
Thursday 11/20 - Talk about you pray?  How has it affected your life?  Stories?
Friday 11/21 - What did you want to be when you grew up?  How did that pan out?  Do you still have those dreams?

>>>HOLIDAY Week<<<
Monday 11/24 - What are your favorite Fall/Winter trends?  What clothes flatter your body type?  Feel free to make this shoppable!
Tuesday 11/25 - Post your best/favorite family photo(s) words necessary.
Wednesday 11/26 - Favorite Christmas music and what do you most look forward to in December?
Thursday 11/27 - Thankful List
Friday 11/28 - Holiday Wish List (that everyone can shop...or send you gifts!)

I'm SO looking forward to the November Blogathon!
Grab the button (⬇ ⬇ ⬇) and I'll see ya' on Monday!!!!
The Mrs. and The Momma


Remembering:  A post I did a few years back on what to do with all the leftover Halloween candy and how I'm planning to apply the same method this year.  We ended up not attending our church's Trunk-Or-Treat, so at least our candy yields won't be over the top this year...which is totally fine with my waistline.  side note:  I need to start running again...ugh.

Giggling About:  A post I wrote for Austin Moms Blog last week...10 Signs You're Living in a Girl's World.  I had so much fun writing this post because it is totally MY LIFE and I just know other mommas of girls can relate.  Naked Barbies, no toilet paper EVER, sassy attitudes, etc.

Planning:  I'm putting together a Holiday Gift Guide Pinterest board which will translate into several gift guides here on the blog.  My SIL Dena (aka the best gift giver EVER) will be providing her talents in compiling these guides...make sure to stay posted and let me know if you'd like to see something specific featured!

Anxiously awaiting:  DO YOU KNOW WHAT SATURDAY IS???  Of course to most people it's merely the day after Halloween and the first day of November...BUT, I consider it the beginning of Christmas Music listening season!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Pandora and I will be inseparable for the next two months...BFFs until Christmas, at which time I'll totally drop her like a bad habit.

Interested to know:  What is your favorite ski resort?  I've skied quite a few resorts in Colorado, a couple in New Mexico, and one in California...but have always wanted to visit a Utah mountain.  This December, we're heading up to the darling town of Breckenridge for a little trip.  Tyler Bree and Riley skied last year in Angel Fire, so I'm hoping they'll remember how!

Baking:  Cinnamon Swirl Pumpkin Banana Bread...I made this the other day and it lasted approximately 1/4 of a day in our house.  Slather it up with some Irish butter and you've got an Autumn party in your mouth!  I'm trying out all sorts of new pumpkin recipes these days...I'll make sure to share if I come across any more get-in-my-mouth-now recipes!

Keeping a secret:  Guess what?!?  We're taking our kids on another Disney Cruise!!!!  You can see my comparison of a Disney cruise to others HERE...which pretty much sums up how I feel about it.  SO EXCITED....but shhhhh, we aren't telling the kids until Christmas!  I've got to think of a fun way to divulge the secret.  Last time we did a scavenger hunt, but I'm thinking of maybe puzzle pieces that fit together this time.  And I've got to keep my dang mouth shut!  I've almost let it slip out more times than I can count...thankfully I still have gullible children.  :)

DIYing:  Since we've moved into our new house, Blake has put his handy skills to work with several DIYs....remember the Barn Doors, Industrial Shelves, and the most recent Windmill Kitchen Light?  Well, I have another one for him...enter a new kitchen table.  Our table has seen better days and we either need to spruce it up a bit to be more like this table OR build a whole new one like this Anthropologie-inspired one.  Which one do you like best???  

>>>Feel free to share your "currentlies" and tag me so I can come check out your list.  Happy Monday friends...I hope it's a Spooktacular week for ya'!!!!

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BeautiFALL with CAbi

As I teased via my social media yesterday, I'm completely head over heels with this CAbi outfit...perfectly styled for Fall!  It's no secret I have a mild obsession with the clothing line...I'm always finding people who love CAbi as much as I do...we high five each other, wink, nod, do the secret handshake, and go on our way.  :)  Just kidding...but truly, my closet gets little heart palpitations each Spring/Fall when the new collections are debuted!  I just love the chic sophistication that can be worn any and every day!


This next Tuesday, CAbi invites you to experience their BeautiFall Career Event, where you can learn about their latest collection and receive an exclusive sneak peek at Spring 2015.  There's a viewing party here in Austin and I'll be live tweeting with all the make sure to follow along with @CAbiClothing and me!


This BeautiFall outfit of mine features the Ryder Jacket, the Ladylike Tunic, and my new favorite jeans...the Stormy Wash Super Skinny Jean.  You can check out CAbi's entire Fall collection here, where you'll recognize some other pieces I wore in this post!

Want to see more???  Check out some of my favorite CAbi outfits below:

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5 Online Boutiques You Need to Know About

I follow quite a few online boutiques on Instagram (I find that they put their best stuff on there), so naturally I start remembering the ones that consistently post really unique and amazing clothing.

And I wouldn't be doing my duty to all you fabulous readers of mine if I didn't share, now would I?

So here's 5 of my favorite online boutiques along with a couple of my picks from their shops.  Maybe you've heard of some or maybe you haven' hopefully you can find something that suits your fancy, or the fancy of someone special.  Make sure to click through to the shops, as these are just my individual picks.
Hello, Christmas is knocking on the door people.

Psst-The Mama Bird tee is my fave!

Noonday Collection:

Moorea Seal:

Style Lately:
Which of these shops sticks out to you?
All of them, right?
Make sure to follow them on Instagram for all their's the best way to snag one for a good chunk of a discount!

This has been a're welcome, friends!

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Gypsies, Tramps, & Thieves

For some one who LOVES dressing up for Halloween, I just might not be up for it this year at our upcoming Trunk-Or-Treat and Halloween night.  Who AM I?

Friday night I hosted our Halloween-themed bunco and dressed up as a gypsy.  While I liked my costume and was content with how it turned out, I guess I just feel like it was a lot of work...loads of makeup, hot head wear, etc.  That's totally lame, I know.  But once I post what my kids are dressing up as, it'll be apparent that I really don't fit into the mix anyway.  AND, Blake's being party pooper about dressing up, so there's that.

In true form, our bunco group had a fabulously crazy time and I loved every minute of it!  My prizes for the winners were all Halloween decor and everyone brought yummy Fall dishes and desserts.  I love how having guests over makes for a clean house, which I predict will last until this afternoon...

And then I'll just have to come up with another reason to invite people over!

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Gone Junkin'...A Home Decor Post

Y'ALL.  I had my first junkin' experience a couple of weekends ago.
Some call it antiquing.  Some call it junkin'.  Some call it Round Top, Texas.
I call it a kid in a candy shop!

A couple of girlfriends and I took the hour and a half drive out to Round Top and totally scored some amazing finds and deals...haggling is completely the norm...something I didn't realize until AFTER my first purchase.  After we got the jist of our whereabouts (booths as far as the eye can see) and what we mainly were looking to find...the day was a hit!

^^^ I got one of these candle holders....but no candles.  Hoping to find some on Amazon for cheap. ^^^

^^^ My favorite old windmill I somehow was lucky to get for only $60!!! ^^^

Okay, so let me tell you about my personal "interior decorator".  My friend Sienna....who's track record of suggesting amazing additions to our new home has resulted in the barn doors and the above windmill turned kitchen light fixture.  I absolutely love it!  Her husband and Blake turned it into a fully functional light that's now over the kitchen table.  She's got an eye, I tell ya'!

Speaking of interior decorating, I thought I'd just share some festive decor we have up.  In years past I've hardly decorated for this little bit we have up is a huge step.   It might have something to do with me hosting Halloween Bunco this Friday (remember this costume from last year's Halloween bunco?).

^^^ replacing those blue tapers with some black ones methings ^^^

Do you decorate much for Halloween?

Do you go junkin'?

Have you even heard the work junkin' before this post?

I'll stop there.
Happy Columbus Day...or as we call it, "He Never Realized This Wasn't India" Day.

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Off the Beaten {Homeschooling} Path

The other day we went to our local park to have a little change in scenery for Tyler Bree's homeschooling.  On this particular day, all three of the other kids were at school, so I decided to make it special for her with a picnic, but didn't want to use the worn-out sandwich, snack bar, or goldfish route....those foods don't stick with my kids anyway.  So instead, I brought along some snacks with healthy protein and a welcomed variety for both of us!

I picked up these two Hillshire snack varieties at our local Super Target and was pleased with how much Tyler Bree loved them...especially the chicken with honey mustard.  My palate was content with the yummy gouda and salame plate.  I felt fancy!  We ended up hanging out there for a bit while she did some of her reading...but then felt rain drops, so we cut the outing short.  For Tyler Bree, changing it up makes a huge difference in terms of her focus and motivation...and besides, being outdoors always uplifts the spirit!

As a quick homeschooling update, she is really doing well with the two-day school program and has impressed me with her drive to complete tasks while at home (I'm guessing it's that accountability to her teacher, rather than to me).  I'm supplementing a few things at home such as vocabulary, writing, reading comprehension, and a little extra math.  I'll keep updating as we continue to figure out this homeschooling really is true that it's a day-to-day, year-to-year type of deal...but so far, it's still the best thing for her and is working quite nicely for us.

For any of y'all looking to add some unique snack into your repertoire, I'd definitely suggest trying some of these Hillshire snack options...with 15+ gram of protein and pops of bold flavor, they're a refreshingly new way to snack for our family.  Added bonus: they can easily be on-the-go and minimal chances for mess...thumbs up for kids!  I can't wait to introduce them to my other three littles ones!

>>> How do you mix up snacks for your family???  I feel like we're always looking for healthy, nutritious options...I'd love to hear what you feed your family!

#spon: I'm required to disclose a relationship between my site and Hillshire. This could include Hillshire providing me w/content, product, access or other forms of payment.

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