Friday Favorites #11

Happy Friday everyone! How are you all doing? I hope that there are lots of things making you smile this week, I’ll be sharing the things I’m loving most this week below. Any fun plans for the weekend? I know it’s not technically fall yet so are you holding onto all of those fun summer activities for as long as possible or diving head first into the fall festivities. I am so tempted to take James apple picking this weekend! I have a feeling it will be a lot more fun for him than last year when he couldn’t even sit up on his own. My how a year can change things! We also have a fun afternoon planned for Sunday celebrating our friend Lauren’s birthday with a mini road trip to get fish fry!

YOGA

I’m not a total yogi yet, but I have found myself enjoying relaxing yoga sessions a few times a week. James and I are gym members again, and looking forward to starting another session of swim lessons next week. I’ve also been dropping him off at childcare a few days a week so that I can enjoy some yoga! I hate to say it but I just don’t have the energy to do a hard-core workout followed by a long day of play with James so rather than burn myself out at the gym I’ve been tuning into Yoga with Adrienne. Shoutout to Sam (woohoo!), for introducing me to this great yoga channel. Adrienne has the most soothing voice and offers such a wide variety of yoga practices on her channel. I did a Detox and Reset practice the other day and it was the perfect amount of stretching with a little bit of burn mixed in. I can’t wait to explore more of her videos!

THE STATE FAIR

Last weekend I was joined by two friends for a trip to The Great New York State Fair! I’ve been going to the fair for as long as I can remember and I have so many fun fair memories from all of the visits I’ve made. After last year’s cancellation due to Covid I was thrilled that a few friends were equally as excited about going this year! We had a jam packed afternoon covering the entire fair grounds and all of it’s buildings. I had heard mixed reviews from people about the status of the fair this year, but I think we were all pleasantly surprised, and it met all of our expectations. We each had certain items (mostly food) that we had our sights on, and the fair delivered! For me it’s all about the chocolate milk (cold, creamy, deliciousness) and fried dough (soft, doughy, sweetness). But I also really enjoyed my lunch of “walking tacos” eaten straight out of a Doritos bag. YUM. Aside from the delicious treats, we soaked up lots of time with animals, saw a horse show, diving show, sand sculpture, butter sculpture, and so much more! I wish that Josiah was a fair goer, his presence was missed. I’m not giving up hope, between me and James we will have him converted in no time πŸ˜‰

THEY’RE HOME!

My parents and their friends arrived home safe late Wednesday night after a two week trip to Croatia. After dealing with multiple flight complications on the plane ride over, we were all hoping and praying for a smooth trip home. As it turns out, their initial flight home got cancelled, which they found out upon arriving to the airport to go home. After an extra night in Croatia, and a long trip home I am so happy and relieved that they’ve made it! It sounds like they had a great trip too, minus the complicated travel. They did a boat and bike tour for most of their time there and I can’t wait to hear more about it. When James saw them yesterday he was beside himself with excitement, it was so cute!

MY LITTLE FAMILY

That doesn’t look so little when I look at current pictures of all of us and realize that I am quickly being outgrown by James! Yikes. I’m used to being the short one, but I have a feeling that James is following right in Josiah’s footsteps with his height. We met up with my sister and her friends who were in town last weekend and took a quick hike down to see Chittenango Falls. It was a beautiful afternoon to visit the falls, the sun was trying to peak through the clouds and it made the water sparkle. Admittedly we are bad about capturing family photos, so I cherish the ones we do have.

Question of the Day: What is one thing making you smile this week?

Have a great weekend everyone!

A Weekend at Cranberry Lake

Happy Tuesday everyone! I took an extended weekend away from blogging, but I’m back at it this morning with a weekend update! How was your weekend? I hope the week is off to a good start for you too!

FRIDAY

After sleeping in a bit thanks to my parents having James for a sleepover Thursday night, we packed ourselves up and hit the road for a weekend trip to the Adirondacks. We drove to Cranberry Lake which was just shy of a 3 hour drive. Thanks to a little caffeine boost after a quick pit-stop at Starbucks on the way up, the drive flew by!

Josiah and I were the first to arrive and enjoyed a picnic lunch before we were joined by the other campers. Our main activity Friday was the lake and it could not have been a more beautiful day for an afternoon on the water. The campground had a sandy beach and swimming area and our friends brought a kayak and stand up paddle boards. The lake conditions were choppy, but that didn’t stop us from taking the boats out and swimming in the wide open water.

Before we knew it, dinner time was approaching and our grumbling stomachs called us back to the campground. We dug into some snacks and sandwiches and started a fire for the evening. The rest of our group joined us a little later, and we all enjoyed the most creative campfire dinner of hot dogs wrapped in crescent rolls. Genius and oh so delicious. Thank you Brian and Sam for introducing us to this meal! For any campers out there, all you have to do is roast a hot dog over the fire until it’s warm, and then take a raw crescent triangle and wrap it around the hot dog. The next step is ideally a slow roast to give the crescent time to cook around the hot dog, and if you’re patient you’ll end up with bigger version of pigs in a blanket! I’ll never eat a traditional hot dog again, haha!

Our friends were on a roll and even thought to bring reese’s peanut butter cups and chocolate graham crackers so that we could step up our s’more game as well. Yum! The night passed by quickly between all of our delicious campfire treats and fun conversations. The clock struck 10pm which meant campground quiet hours, and we all went to bed shortly after.

SATURDAY

The morning started bright and early, I mean who isn’t up at the crack of dawn when they’re camping?! The night was so peaceful, but I always struggle to sleep. Josiah and I were in charge of breakfast and cooked up some eggs, bacon and sausage to have alongside bagels, with lots of fresh berries. Some of us stuck with bagels and cream cheese with everything else on the side while others got a little creative by cooking up some campfire (how many times am I going to say this word?) breakfast sandwiches! All I did for mine was make a breakfast sandwich, wrapped it in foil and placed it on the grate to heat up over the fire. Not going to lie, something went wrong with the eggs and they tasted kind of burned, but I can’t complain for a camp breakfast.

Two of our friends went to the beach Saturday morning while the rest of us climbed Bear Mountain which was located right within the campground. It was a quick hike and featured some really pretty views. I barely used my phone on this trip which is why my photo assortment is running low…thanks again Sam for sharing your pics! Camping calls for a little break from technology and it’s always refreshing to do so.

Once we made our way back to the campsites, I took a little nap in Josiah’s hammock, some of us played games, others talked, and Marie and Kevin made a highly innovative camping lunch of “walking tacos” for our group. I am putting these on the menu in the future even if we aren’t camping because it is such a fun and low-mess idea! You each get a small bag of chips, we had an assortment of Fritos, Doritos, etc. you crush them up a bit, and then fill the remainder of your bag with taco meat, salsa, cheese, sour cream, shredded lettuce and any other toppings you like, grab a fork and enjoy! Our friends are so smart!

Josiah and I reluctantly said goodbye to everyone after lunch and drove back home to pick up James at my parents house. We were so grateful for the time to get away and go camping with our friends though and James enjoyed his time with Grammy and Pappy! He ate milkshakes and fries for lunch both days, how could he complain?

We took turns napping on the drive home, camping is exhausting! Josiah also pushed hard for a takeout dinner Saturday night and I’m glad he did because it was really nice not to have any dishes to clean up in the midst of unpacking Saturday night. We had an anonymous note and gift card to a local meat market show up in our mailbox the other day from a church member (we’re assuming?), so we used that to get some burgers and potato salad and they hit the spot!

It was an early night for all of us, and we woke up feeling well rested Sunday morning.

SUNDAY

James and I woke up to our go-to pancake breakfast, I am switching things up this week with some baked oatmeal and muffin recipes, stay tuned. I can tell we’re both burning out of pancakes fast, but like I’ve said before they are just too darn easy!

After church the three of us went over to my parents house to watch their dog Charlotte for the afternoon because they were out on a friend’s boat all day. While James napped, I took Charlotte to one of our favorite trails and I forgot how nice it is to walk without pushing a stroller or hauling James around in the hiking backpack (love ya bud, but you’re a load!).

An easy dinner of spaghetti and meatballs rounded out the evening, followed by another batch of chocolate zucchini bread muffins and an episode of Manifest. Not loving season 2 as much as the first one, but we’re hanging in there. Also, who’s excited for The Bachelorette season finale this week? The drama is picking up!

THIS WEEK

And here we are one day in to another week already. Summer is flying by! Who’s looking forward to fall? Who wants to hang on to summer as long as possible? I’m a little bit in both camps right now, but definitely leaning towards more summer please! James and I are getting into a groove and especially loving all of the lake time we’ve been getting in lately. He LOVES the water and I’m happy where he’s happy πŸ™‚

Have a great Tuesday everyone!

Friday Favorites #7

TGIF! Am I right?! How has your week been? Ours started on a rough note, when James had a pretty bad fall on Monday morning which sent us to urgent care followed by the hospital followed by the dentist. It was a really stressful start to the week and I have found myself in an emotionally fragile state ever since. This morning Josiah and I are on our way to the Adirondacks to spend the night camping with friends. I am hoping some time away to recharge and connect with friends will be just the cure for this slump that I’ve been in all week.

I love these Friday Favorite posts because they are a great way for me to reflect on the bright moments of the week and express gratitude even when the week felt like a hard one. Let’s take a look…

  • James Dancing

Despite an epic fall at the beginning of the week, James’s spirits have been high and no matter how I’m feeling, watching him bust out some dance moves never fails to bring laughter and joy into the moment. James absolutely loves music of any kind, especially when he can “hold” the music and dance right along with it. His dance move collection is growing and what used to be a simple bopping up and down now involves claps, twirls, and stomping his right foot to the beat. I hope he never loses his love for music and dancing, it’s just too darn cute!

  • Mom and Dad

On Wednesday night when our oven was still out of order, James and I packed up dinner supplies and I made stromboli at my parents house. Thank goodness Mom and Dad live just 15 minutes away and were willing to accept two last minute dinner guests! A girl that loves to cook can only go so long without using an oven. Fortunately I won’t be needing our oven for the next couple of days, I’m just hoping the replacement part comes in soon!

  • Chocolate Nutty Cone Ice Cream

I’m usually raving about Trader Joe’s over here, but Wegmans you’re onto something with this one. I discovered this ice cream when we went to Rochester for a family birthday party a few weekends ago, and finally caved to purchasing a quart for us. If you’re a Wegmans shopper, do yourself a favor and give this flavor a try!

  • Our Second Wedding Anniversary

This week Josiah and I celebrated our 2nd wedding anniversary and considering the fact that we barely did anything for each other just about sums up our whirlwind 2 years together. While we aren’t big gift givers, I would love to find the time to write out my thoughts on our first two years of marriage and share it with Josiah AND we did celebrate in the form of an extra special date night this week to Texas de Brazil which I had never been to before. PLUS wait for the next Friday favorite to find out another way in which we are “sort of” celebrating our marriage this weekend!

  • Weekend Getaway

We’re going away with our favorite people and I CANNOT wait! I guess I gave this one away by mentioning our camping trip at the beginning of the post, but we are super excited to be with the same group we travelled with a few months ago when we rented an air BnB just outside of Lake Placid. This time we’re heading back up to the Adirondacks and going full blown camping. Josiah and I will only be joining for one night of the trip, but I’m feeling very fortunate to spend even a short amount of time with our friends thanks to Grammy and Pappy who are spending the next couple of days with James.

Question of the Day: What’s one thing you’re looking forward to this weekend?

Have a great weekend everyone! I’ll be back next week with all the details on our camping trip and James’s adventures with Grammy and Pappy. Stay tuned!

A Fall-Like Summer Weekend

Happy Monday to YOU! How did the weekend treat ya? I hope you were able to enjoy a couple of days of fun and relaxation. It almost felt like *gasp* fall around here this weekend and I’m still not sure how I feel about it . Hopefully it was just a fluke, and our regularly scheduled summer weather will be back in full swing this week. We’re not maxed out on summer fun just yet!

We had an enjoyable weekend in our neck of the woods. Friday is usually the start of the weekend for us since Josiah has to work Sunday’s, and I can’t say I hate the early start to the weekend.

  • FRIDAY

We kicked off our Friday morning with a hike around Green Lakes State Park followed by play time on the beach and playground for James. While he tolerated the loop around the lakes in the hiking backpack, his favorite part of the outing was by far the 4 girls and their dog that found a fondness with James on the playground. They were helping him down the slide, letting him pet their dog, playing with wood chips, etc. Josiah and I weren’t about to complain about a little impromptu babysitting while we got to sit back to enjoy some peaceful lake views.

Once we arrived home, lunch was in order asap thanks to our rumbling tummies. Fortunately I had prepped a dish of buffalo chicken dip that just needed to be heated in the oven, along with some leftover pizza and veggies. A lunch that includes both buffalo dip and pizza is not one to be neglected around here. We dug right in as soon as our food was out of the oven!

James was more than ready for a nap after lunch, and I was quite wiped myself. While James napped we had a few visitors in the form of apartment maintenance who stopped by to take a look at our semi-broken oven. After a lot of screw driver madness, it was determined that they would need to order a new part for our oven. Womp womp. Household repairs are never fun. Once they had cleared out of the kitchen, I tried to make the most of James’s nap and prepped our dinner for the evening which was a vegan egg roll in a bowl that we served over ramen. I made the entire egg roll part of the dish and stored it in containers in the fridge. When it was time to eat, dinner came together in a flash. After cooking a few packages of ramen and reheating the stir-fry, dinner was done and plated in no time! Cleanup was a breeze as well. I often drag my feet to do dinner prep during James’s nap (because I usually want to collapse myself), but the payoff is always worth it.

James woke up from his nap in a not-so-great mood, which meant it was time to hit the road for a little treat. What did we have in mind to cheer James up? Ice cream! It works like a charm to put a smile on my face so why not test it out on our son? Sure enough, James was a happy camper once he had a big cone of ice cream in his hand…and all over his entire body. And while he was riding a sugar high, we decided to burn some energy at Josiah’s elementary school playground. I’m having so much fun exploring new playgrounds this summer, especially as a family.

Josiah was invited to a boys night on Friday, and I took advantage of the quiet evening by catching up on the latest episode of The Bachelorette. It was Men Tell All which was my least favorite episode of the season, but the first 20 minutes really grabbed my attention (and heart) with a very unexpected and heartbreaking departure of one of my favorite contestants on the show this season. So sad. For those watching this season, what did you think of it so far?

  • SATURDAY

I was hoping we would have a nice slow start to our Saturday, but no such luck. I know there are parents waking up even earlier than us, but a 6:30am start to the day was a liiiitle too early for mama. I quickly made a batch of coffee to get the day going on a more energetic note. The fridge was looking a little bare and I was feeling uninspired, so it was a kodiak cake kind of morning for me and James! I absolutely cannot get Josiah on the pancake bandwagon, but two of us were there for it!

When the weather feels like fall how can you resist a morning drive for some donuts. A solo morning drive to boot! Josiah stayed back with James while I made a family donut run. After dropping off a box of donuts to my in-laws, I brought our box inside and we devoured it in 2.5 seconds. I wish! I’m actually kidding. I have this thing with donuts lately where I prefer to eat them for dessert rather than during the day. There’s a part of me that doesn’t like to eat super sweet things during the day and another part of me that likes to have something extra special to look forward to at the end of the day…like donuts. If you’ve never had a donut for dessert, give it a try!

I reached out to a friend about going for a walk Saturday morning and she was free! We enjoyed another walk at Green Lakes along with great conversation, and James getting dried mango slices stuck everywhere…James was highly amused by the bike rack at the park and after lots of time spent in this exact location, we hit the road in need of lunch and a nap.

I spent James’s nap time working on a few blog posts, and before long James was up and ready for action. It was a beautiful afternoon so we decided to walk down the road to Grandma’s house to visit her and Uncle John. James’s afternoon slump was quickly brightened by seeing two of his favorite family members. After a quick walk home we met up with my parents at our apartment before setting them up with James for the evening. He was more than thrilled to see Grammy, Pappy and Charlotte and literally ran as fast as he could to greet Pappy at the door. I just love his love for all of his grandparents <3.

my best attempt at a family selfie…

Our date night took an unexpected turn when our first takeout option had just closed when we pulled into the parking lot. We ended up getting our favorite greek salads and then met up with friends for a round of mini-golf. Our evening concluded with (too many) donuts, and the finale of season one of Manifest. What an ending!

  • SUNDAY

Sunday morning started bright and early as it usually does around here. Josiah went to the church and James and I did our usual morning routine of breakfast, play, chores, and a quick neighborhood walk before we went to church ourselves.

The rest of Sunday was rainy and cold which called for a relaxing afternoon at home, and a warm and comforting bowl of tomato soup with grilled cheese for dinner. Who doesn’t love a lazy Sunday? Although with a 1 year old in the picture, when is life ever relaxing? Haha.

Alrighty folks I’m off to get this Monday started! I hope you all have a great one πŸ™‚

Firetruck, Splash Pad, Birthday Party, and More!

Happy Monday to you! Here we are at the beginning of another week! James and I don’t have too many plans on the agenda for the week, but I hope to fill our days with lots of summer activities and outdoor fun! Maybe a few playdates too? We’ll see!

FRIDAY

On Friday morning we had some unexpected visitors at our apartment building, the fire department! They were doing a routine assessment, and were very kind to let James explore their fire truck. He might need another year under his belt before he fully understands the concept, but I was impressed with the “vroom vroom” noises he was making as Josiah toured him around the truck.

Our weekend plans kicked off with a trip to a new-to-us playground and splash pad. It was about a 45 minute drive, but SO worth it. I have never been to a splash pad before and it was a blast. Josiah and I were so giddy, I think it reminded us of a mini waterpark! James was hesitant at first, but quickly warmed up to all of the water-filled fun!

Prior to the splash pad opening, we explored the beautiful playground right nearby. I loved the fact that this was a turf playground as James LOVES to eat wood chips and rocks which are commonly found at most playgrounds. Once again, I think Josiah and I had just as much fun exploring this playground as James did. They even had a double-sided swing that you could go on with your little one. So cool!

We couldn’t head home without making a stop at Bob’s BBQ for an early lunch. It’s a once a year stop for us since it’s in the middle of nowhere, but worked out perfectly with our morning activities because it was only 10 minutes away from the park and on our way home!

The food was delicious as usual, and James got some extra play time in thanks to the adorable kid area they have on-site. He even dug in to some of the BBQ chicken which was shocking! Must’ve been good πŸ™‚

SATURDAY

We all slept in Saturday morning, which is never taken for granted these days. I always appreciate when James decides to sleep in on a weekend day. Originally we had planned to get an early start and head over to another splash pad before going to a family birthday party, but ended up opting for a slow morning at home before our travels. We went through a Starbucks drive-thru on our way to the party and I thought it would be a fun idea to order James a “puppacino” aka cup of whipped cream, as you can see he loved the idea and I quickly regretted it, ha!

We enjoyed a fun afternoon of kid-chaos and catching up with family while munching on Wegmans subs, cake, and ice cream! Lots of kids and babies on Josiah’s side of the family.

SUNDAY

Sunday was filled with a lot of the usual, Josiah went to the church bright and early while James and I did a quick neighborhood walk followed by a few errands at Target and Trader Joe’s (our favorites!). We joined Josiah for church at 10:30 followed by a relaxing afternoon. Josiah stayed home with James so that he could nap and I got out of the apartment for an afternoon with the ladies! We gathered for a little girl’s lunch and conversation and while our group didn’t have a lot of energy (hello, lazy Sunday!) it was still nice to see everyone and spend a few hours with some of my best friends <3.

Question of the Day: What activities did you get up to this weekend?

Talk to you soon friends πŸ™‚

An Embarrassing Frisbee Golf Experience and Other Weekend Happenings

Hey everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful summer weekend! It feels like there is always so much to do in the summer, it makes me wonder what we all do during those cold winter months to stay busy…

Saturday

Our Saturday morning kicked off with a quick breakfast followed by a little road trip. Not much of a road trip really, but it was a solid 30 minute drive which is pretty far for us these days. We wanted to check out a disc golf course that we had never been to and I thought it would be totally doable to have James tag along with us. When we pulled into the parking lot early Saturday morning there were already a number of cars there, and we immediately got the impression that this was not necessarily a family friendly disc golf experience.

Everyone seemed to be dressed professionally while sporting official golf carts loaded with more discs than I could even count and ALL of the disc golf accessories. Meanwhile our crew showed up unpacking the baby stroller, grabbing my bright yellow recreation frisbee, all while trying to get James’s sneakers on as we fed him a bottle. A hot mess of a family about to do a walk of shame across the parking lot, passing by all of these “real deal” players as we tried to locate the first hole.

We gave it our best shot on the course, no pun intended πŸ˜‰ James spent some time in the stroller until he got restless, then he lagged behind us getting distracted by every leaf along the way. The course was long and we felt the pressure to move quickly because the pro’s were on our tail. At one point we saw a playground on the horizon. I didn’t think much of it, but Josiah quickly abandoned his motivation to continue golfing, and James seemed like he could use some toddler fun, so we made our way to the playground. Sure enough, James had a blast!

After completing 3.5 out of 18 holes with a baby, we concluded our experience by saying, “never again will we bring James disc golfing”. At least we got to explore a cool playground instead! Not to mention a stop at a local bakery on the way home. Yes please to a donut and a box full of other delicious treats!

After James took a quick nap on the car ride home, we all ate leftovers for lunch, followed by a walk to the library. James and I still hadn’t been to the library near us, so I was excited to check it out. Unfortunately all of the children’s toys and games were packed up for Covid reasons so the children’s room looked a little bare, but James still enjoyed exploring the new space and quickly found some stairs to climb. We walked out with a library card too!

The rest of our Saturday included a nap for James and play time at home, followed by pepperoni pizza chicken from the meal plan that I posted last week. I will be sure to share a full recap of the meal plan after we’ve tried all of the meals. This one was a bit messy and I’m shocked that I was able to get a decent photo of it. Tasted great though!

Sunday

On Sunday we had plans to do an even longer road trip to meet up with friends at Lake Ontario. Josiah’s mom kindly offered to take James, so he got to spend the afternoon with his grandma and cousin Maya. It was HOT on Sunday, so a lake day sounded perfect! The water was intimidatingly cold at first, but once you were in it was very refreshing. Josiah insisted on dragging a giant tree branch into the water and it quickly became our lake entertainment as we all attempted to stand and sit on the branch all while having lots of fun splashing in the lake.

After a few hours of water excitement, we made our way over to Rudy’s Lakeside Drive-In for some Fish n’ Chips. We lucked out with a table right along the water in the shade and enjoyed our fish sandwiches while chatting away. An ice cream shop was conveniently right next door and our group had no hesitation concluding our time together with some ice cream!

A weekend that includes donuts, ice cream, family time, friends, and swimming is a good one in my books! I hope you all had a fun weekend as well! Talk to you soon!