Find us at Hidden Creek Farm

We packed up the diaper bag and layers to drive up to Sunbury with our next door neighbors, Mike and Mo (Maureen). Lucky for us, they collect fun ideas for us to try (ie: redecorating our entire living room in neutrals, mounting our TV, and now going to a Fall festival).

It was a short highway drive to Sunbury (the farm is right off the 36/37 exit on Cheshire road). I know that there are several of these Fall Fests starting up this time of year and running through October, but I think this one was the perfect speed for us. No crowds, small children (come here if you have toddlers!), easy parking, farm animals, and food!  We don't need the zipline and Alien cornfield mazes yet, but if you want those, try Leeds Farm or the MAiZE at Little Darby Creek.

Here is what we loved...

 Beautiful weather and views of the neighboring farms...the corn cannon...

 Good times with daddy on the flatbeds, in the "Great Pumpkin Slide", and being chased...
Larkyn absolutely loved the corn box. We had to take her out against her will twice. The shy sheep, the baby turkeys, the clucking chickens, and the 2 week old calf were all fun to see. 

Pumpkins!! What a great pumpkin harvest and selection! We could have taken the hayride back to the pumpkin patch to pick our own, but we opted to eat the amazing pulled pork sandwiches from the food truck and get a good lookin' pumpkin from the stand.

The BBQ truck that was there was serving pulled pork and chicken sandwiches, ribs, hot and cold cider, and homemade sides like coleslaw and beans (it was fabulous and I wish I remembered the name of it). The little market had Amish canned goods (we got peach salsa), local doughnuts, and lots of candy and baked goods. You can get apples, squash, and about 100 different kinds of pumpkins and gourds. Admission is $6 over the age of 2, and this includes all activities (but not food).

Style Saturday: Phase 2 living room makeover

Just a quick update on the developments over the last week. All of the Benjamin Moore Westminster Gold 300 disaster is gone. I love the new color and the more open feel of our space. I don't have apples-to-apples before and afters, but you get the picture...

We had the quatrefoil mirror from another area in the house, and it was from Hobby Lobby. The key is from a set of 7 at Pottery Barn for 15.99. And I'm in love with that 5.99 wooden sign from Homegoods.

We may eventually put a console table there, but I really like it as an uncluttered area for Larkyn to chill. 
This is what the corner looked like before. The tree will be able to have more space this year without the big bookshelf, which was replaced with....

This! We still have to do something with the cords, but I am so happy with the way it turned out. I had fun decorating with things I already had and purchasing the basket (7.99 Homegoods) and little flower/vase (4.99 Homegoods) The ladder bookcase itself is from Value City and was originally white (spray painted matte black). And there is a close up of some of Matt's favorites as well as a print of my grandma's house and a 2.99 votive from Homegoods. It holds all of our boxes for the TV, which moved here...

SO sorry about the Barney image obscuring all of the beauty! She doesn't even like that show, it just happened to be on. The only stipulation for Matt and his dad to hang the TV was that I still have room for all of my mantle-ish things. But then we had the issue of gratuitous cord-viewing. So, I found that lovely little yellow artichoke/flower. It brings in just a touch of the yellow I wanted and hides the outlet (16.99 Homegoods). I had the two candle holders from Pottery Barn several years ago.

So glad we rearranged everything. Our awesome neighbor "Mike the electrician" helped Matt with the wiring so that we could put the TV on the wall. He also helped remove our dining room light and replace it, which leads us to Phase 3 (this one might take a while)....

Birthday Thursday: 17 months

This was as good as it got. I could choose between "climbing away" or "blurry tears". Please notice the 1/2 painted wall.

New favorite foods: Taco salad, and anything Miss C makes her for lunch. She will eat anything for the sitter!

New skills: Running, recognizing landmarks out the window and saying "Ooooohhhh!" every time she sees them. Like me with Target.

Obsessions: Being chased, watching The Goodnight Show on Sprout, trucks

New way to charm strangers: Saying "Hi!!" with almost cartoon-like enthusiasm

Challenges us by: Showing us her sudden dramatic side. God forbid we suggest a bath or a nap (two things she likes)...she protests like no other. She screams when I drop her at Miss C's (and stops 2.3 seconds after I close the door), which is "fun". It's almost funny seeing this new side of her because she is such an easygoing is all great practice for her future Emmy award when she beats out the Jolie-Pitt twins.

I haaaaaate eating delicious Apple Jacks and yogurt, mama. Don't ever suggest it again!

Watch out Vivienne and Knox.

Sentimental Sunday: Homecoming at Otterbein

If you were in a sorority at a small college, you know how important Homecoming was. We worked for DAYS "pomming" our float, coming up with the perfect playlist to go along with the theme, so we could blare it out of the speakers, and showing up at 7 AM (in the rain or snow every year) to get the show on the road. There was always drama, but there was always fun.

I try to go back each year, and since they changed from quarters to semesters, Homecoming is way earlier and has much better weather! I love taking Larkyn to see all of her "aunties" and the other Theta Nu kids. I get to see the old Craftsman house (it is actually the exact kind of home I'd love to have one day) and see how much better the girls have it 10 years later. The day they get air conditioning, they will officially be spoiled:)

This year, we met up for breakfast at the house and a little parade-watching, followed by lunch with Daisy and Nikki at the Campus Center.

We all know its all about the outfit:) Our mascot was the deer, so Larkyn thought is appropriate to wear this.

The old house! And there are 2 little Violets, sitting where their mamas used to contemplate the world.

Where is that parade? As you can see, the crowd was a little young for all the candy being thrown at them, but Larkyn held on to her pack of Smarties like it was gold. And how cute are the twins?

Style Saturday: House makeover Part 1

Well hello, my old friends. It has been awhile. Want to know where I've been?


Tray from Pier One (24.95), pillows from Pier One (23.95 on sale), throw from Pier One (39.99). Sofa, loveseat and ottoman from Value City furniture (Nolan collection). We have a round black candleholder that will go over the sofa.

I'm in love. I'm in love with Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter, with the color "antique teal" (which I made up), and with the natural light I have been dying to have for 2.5 years. Let's take a look at the before, shall we?

Totally different feeling. So, when you are working full time and baby is down to one nap (yes, that is a new development), you have about 2 hours on the weekends to really get things accomplished. That is where I have been. Well, that and Pier One, Bed Bath and Beyond, and Homegoods.

Here is the inspiration that guided the palette. Both fabrics are Dwell Studio by Robert Allen, available at Joann's (take coupons or find them on your phone like I did, because it is 34.99/yard!)

Also in breaking news, the spending freeze is over. It went into early retirement. Because, when your boyfriend buys an entire living room set, how do you say "thanks, but I can't contribute because I bought an overpriced planner"? So, it's over. I am still sticking to my guns about not buying clothes for myself and challenging myself to be creative with my wardrobe.

Here are some of my favorite accents in the room (s):
Target For The Home console table in espresso (129.99), Grandview lamp from Homegoods (29.99)

Cynthia Rowley frame from Homegoods (4.99), books from Matt's library
Curtains from Homegoods (13.99 for two panels!) Oops, we have some rogue screws.
We have a good place for our laptops to live (instead of on the floor or on the ottoman), a place to kind of hide the paper shredder, and a place underneath the console to hide junk mail or anything else we need to shove away somewhere. You know you have places like that, come on.

Phase 2 and 3 will be the dining room and the other side of the living room (TV to be mounted, ladder bookcase to replace giant cherry bookcase). Stay tuned!

Foodie Friday: Coke can pork

Thanks mama, for putting it together while I was working!

September is always a blur. We are lucky if we eat a home-cooked meal (I'm not sure Matt would use the term "lucky"). So, when I overheard someone in the hallway saying "I just put a pork shoulder and a can of rootbeer in the crock pot!", I was intrigued. Here is my version that was a serendipitous meal last night (with leftovers for today).

Coke can pork
1.5 lb cut of pork shoulder (the butcher will cut it to size, based on how many people you are feeding)
1 white onion, sliced into rings
I can of cola (we had regular Coke)
salt and pepper to taste
Mashed potatoes

Place pork shoulder in crock pot. Slice the onion and put into crock pot over top of the pork. Pour entire can of cola over the pork. Cook on low heat for at least 6 hours. Serve over mashed potatoes.

Just a preview...

Guess what's happening around here?
Wow, that yellow. It is REALLY not that yellow, it is just dark and I needed the flash...
Yes, goodbye yellow. Hello Greige (actually Benjamin Moore Thunder, Valspar Tempered Grey, Valspar Urban Sunrise).

Goodbye red sofa, hello brown.

Hello storage bed that might be the solution to all the world's problems.

Things are changing around here. Oh and if you are keeping tabs on me, Big Poppa is not on a spending freeze. And in a very giving mood, I might add. I'll of course show you every step along the way.

I'm thinking we are going to need to get the furniture in here before settling on a color. Any inclinations from you on these three?


Loving: My new Erin Condren planner! I almost drove into our bushes trying to see if it was on the porch when I got home today. More details this weekend...

Thankful for: You, for reading! I just saw that this is my 300th post. It is therapeutic for me to write, and it is fun to have an audience and community of listeners.

Thinking about: Babies! Hard not to when all of the blogs I follow (I only follow 6!) look like this, this, and this. Oh and this. I am also thinking good thoughts for my friends who so badly want babies (and SO GREATLY deserve them) and good thoughts for my friends who have just found out they're going to be mamas!

Hungry for: Mint Cookie Ben and Jerry's (thanks Kate, for the iPhone pic)

Proud of: Matt for his new writing endeavor.  Good job, bud!

Impressed by: My student teacher. She is a natural and so helpful. I am so grateful to have her in my class and to be able to spend more 1-1 time with my kids.

Itching to buy: A Sedu or Hana flat iron, one leopard print piece (shoes? scarf? cardigan?)

Well, one of us can rock the animal print, I guess. I kept thinking of Brian Fellow on this day.
Yeah, I couldn't resist...

Wednesday in Pictures

Hooray! Cheering on the walkers at the American Heart Association Walk in the Brewery District. She clapped for everyone. (Note: we weren't IN the walk because we went to see cousin Braden's band perform..maybe next year to support Paw Paw!)
Snacking away with Jax at the Heart Walk. Team Cheez-Its.

We have enough hair for a ponytail!

I can never get a clear picture of elusive Zoe these days. She loves when Matt puts her under the covers in the morning.

My little cupcake queen. She walked around with a counting book all day, pointing to the picture of "5 Cupcakes" and saying "Mmmmmm". So, I have to make the girl some cupcakes.

I'm so jealous of the lighting in my mom's house! We went over for some Labor Day pot roast, since the weather was not grill-friendly.

My planner arrived today! I'll tell you all about it later, but now I have to go and have a marathon calendar session (my drug of choice)

Style Sunday: Instagram frame success!

Well, hello. It's been a while.

That would be because I am back in school, this time with 45 kindergartners to keep me busy. I think about blogging. But all I can seem to do when I get home is keep up with Larkyn and provide the basic needs for my family. The first few weeks back to school is survival mode. But I digress....

Let's talk about my new friend, purchased before the spending freeze. As you might recall, I attempted to DIY this baby, to no avail. I enlisted the help of the fabulous Emily of La Peony Pink.
Etsy shop here

I told her exactly what I wanted, and she made it come to life!  I wanted to hang the 2" size photos so that I could showcase as many as I could at one time. I wanted it black (her store is so light and airy and feminine), and I wanted it not to cost a million dollars. She stayed in contact with me, sharing her sketches, letting me know how it was going, and then finally my gorgeous brown paper package arrived in the mail. I was impressed with the turnaround time of my custom creation. Here it is!

When there is a day with more natural light, I will take better pictures!
The clothespins are glittered, the pictures lay beautifully, and I didn't have to make it myself. Sometimes, it is just worth it to skip the DIY:)  Now, my question for you is...what the heck else should I put on this wall!?

Because I am not buying anything new, I would like to use my small black quatrefoil mirror I already have, but I need something else to make a grouping of three. What do you think?
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