Fall About Me

What better way to finish out my favorite month than with a “Fall About Me” post?! I stole these questions from Lindsay at Bourbon, Lipstick, and Stilettos but I promise the answers are all mine 🙂 I can’t wait to share party-goodness with you guys next week! Monday I will update you on my movie challenge progress (spoiler alert: I’m not doing so hot…) and Wednesday I will talk all about the party! Then every Friday in November will be “Thankful Fridays” in honor of Thanksgiving! Ok, on to the good stuff!

Have a FANTASTIC Halloween, friends!

Favorite Candle Scent: Well, I just bought “Lakeside Sunrise” from Bath & Body Works, but I really love any fall scents. I think I might wander back into the store soon and stock up. (I keep buying Christmas/winter scents… oops!)

Best Fragrance for Fall: I never wear name-brand perfume, but my mom bought me Dior for my birthday and I really love it!

Coffee, Tea, or Hot Chocolate? Coffee in the morning, hot chocolate while relaxing, (decaffeinated) tea in bed!

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My Halloween Kitty Sweatshirt

Favorite Thanksgiving Food: I love all Thanksgiving food (except cranberries… ick!), but I am a sucker for real, homemade mashed potatoes. I could eat them everyday, forever and ever.

Best Fall Memory? Shoot… I love fall and have so many memories. Camping with my dad, raking leaves with my brother, carving pumpkins every year with my brother, haunted corn mazes with my friends and K, my birthday parties in the past, Trick-or-Treating with my friends… Every fall memory is a good one!

Favorite Pie: I don’t actually like pie… The only kind I will eat is pumpkin or peanut butter cream pie, but they have to have a graham cracker crust.

Most Worn Sweater: I have a white sweater that I wear often, but you usually can catch me in my Mount Union or Bristol sweatshirt! Love me some sweatshirts!

What is Autumn like where you live? We typically start the day with a little frost or chilly dew. Temperatures tend to hang out in the 40s and 50s until early afternoon. Some days we see 70 but 60 degrees is perfection in Ohio during fall! Our evenings drop back into the 40s and you can smell the strong hint of campfire or bonfire on every block.

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Football games or jumping in leaf piles? Umm… band competitions? When I was in high school Fall meant marching band. But it also meant football games. Our rival game is actually tonight! Go Phila! Beat Dover!

What song really gets you in the fall spirit? Halloween by Dave Matthews Band!

Which makeup trend: Dark lips or winged liner? I don’t have the make-up to do either of these… but I would probably go with dark lips- it’s so bold and sexy! (And I’m horrible at eyeliner… getting it on, getting it to to stay on, etc.)

Is pumpkin spice worth all the hype? No, it’s not. I like the lattes on occasion and my grandma makes an AWESOME pumpkin cookie, but other than those two items I can go without it.

Favorite fall tv show? Once Upon A Time, The Mindy Project, The Muppets. K and I are also thinking about investing in Quantico.

Combat boots or Uggs? Combat boots. When Uggs were just popular I was gifted a pair and I wore them to death, but I’ve never felt the need or desire to replace them.

Skinny jeans or leggings? Skinny jeans. If I’m hanging around the house I tend to wear athletic shorts (and K does not approve of leggings in public), so when we go somewhere I usually have on skinny jeans!

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My Parents’ Pond

Halloween: Yay or Nay? Well let’s see…. Um… YAY! I’m so excited for our party tomorrow! I think I’ve always loved Halloween so when my friends humor me with costumes and parties it warms my little heart.

Thoughts on Black Friday? I could take it or leave it. I have 25% of my Xmas shopping done, so I’ll probably be more attentive to cyber Monday, but I will be out working on Black Friday since my part-time job is retail… yaaaay…

Fall mornings or evenings? Both. Because fall is fall. I love brisk (weekend) morning walks with the dogs and sitting around a bonfire at night.

One fall 2015 trend you’re loving: I love that sweatshirts are in right now. I love scarves and leg warmers and boots. And I love how “in” Fall is in general… pumpkins and corn mazes and festivals!

See you Monday!

Happy_halloween

-Louise

Halloween Costumes | Part 3

Three days until Halloween!! The rest of my week consists of last minute costume details, pumpkin carving, house cleaning, and food prepping! In hindsight, I should’ve written a post about dog costumes, especially since Ly & Enzo will be adorable this year, but I just didn’t have the time/interest. I did write a few costumes posts and a party-prep article:

Today I will share some last minute costumes that are easy to assemble and can be made with household staples or a quick trip to the store!

Cat
Last night our local mall had a two hour trick-or-treat event. Since I work part-time at a retail store there I was lucky enough to be scheduled & pass out candy! I had to come up with a costume fast and my mom just happened to have ears and a tail in her costume box. Add some black clothes, a little make-up, and voila!

halloween_costumes

. . .

Medusa
In college I had the genius idea to buy a white bed sheet, find some plastic snakes at the dollar store, and experiment with fake lashes. Medusa was a super easy costume to whip together in a day!

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(Another shot of cute little Dobby.)

. . .

Cowgirl
Everyone has a flannel shirt. Hat and boots are optional so long as you can braid in some pigtails and dot your cheeks with freckles! (I actually dress like this sometimes (sans the freckles), so it’s not really a costume to me… haha.)

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(source)

. . .

Ninja Turtle
This one takes a little more effort, but my friend Sarah made these costumes with some ribbon, green shirts, and paint!

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. . .

A Witch
If you don’t have a witch’s hat lying around I bet you can find one at ANY store this time of year. Spice things up and use some hair chalk to turn your locks green or glue beetles to nylon stockings and make people squirm!

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marthastewart.com

In case you’re wondering, our costumes are coming along quite nicely. We have a local costume store in town that rents costumes so I have a green dress on hold for Saturday. Kyle’s costume is a DIY project and I think we finally have all the pieces.

He would be upset if I revealed his costume before the party so I’ll tell you about the dogs instead 🙂 Enzo will be Buzz Lightyear (a costumes that has served us well three years in a row) and Lylee is going as Crush the turtle from Finding Nemo!

Do you dress up your pets? Have you ever been a “monster” (i.e. witch, vampire, ghost) for Halloween?

-Louise

Welcome to October’s Last Monday

This weekend felt long and short, all at the same time. You know what I mean, right? On Saturday I watched my brother-in-law say “I do” to his stunning fiancee wife and a lot of K’s family members were in town so we were very social all weekend. Additionally, my uncle was visiting from St. Louis so I tried to spend some time with my side of the family, too. This introvert had a wonderful time, but I could use a few hours alone under the covers with a book and a flashlight to recharge.

Instead, how about an inspirational motivational appropriate quote to get me to Friday (because I have Friday off this week so I can put all my efforts into our Halloween party)!

coffee

I’m so grateful to start the week alive, caffeinated, and positive!

(Side notes: This weekend I also joined a Harry Potter book club! On Tuesday I get to dress up for my retail job and pass out candy. And I still have to carve some pumpkins this week! Any carving recommendations?? Remember, PIXAR party theme!)

-Louise

 

Grateful Heart w/ Ember Grey

 

Halloween Party Prep

Happy Friday, everyone!!

Are you ready for the true Halloween Queen to emerge? I don’t think your ready for this jelly…

Just to recap, if you’re in need of a couple’s/group costume check out these recommendations.
If you’re going solo this year, consider these characters!

K and I have decided to go with separate costumes this year (GASP!), even though I’m putting them both together. So as a sign of good faith, I will reveal my costume…

halloween_costume

Merida from the film Brave! Remember we’re have a Pixar-themed Halloween Party next Saturday? Last year we had a party (and I blogged about it here and here) but there wasn’t a theme. I’m very excited for this year!

Since the party is in one week I’m in total list-mode. I have my to-do list, my food & drink list (and the corresponding shopping list), and a decorations list. Today I wanted to share some Halloween treats with you!

Creamy Pumpkin Fluff
This is the easiest snack to make! You simple mix a 15 oz. can of pumpkin, a 5 oz. box of instant vanilla pudding (powder), a 16 oz. container of cool whip, and 1/2 tablespoon of pumpkin spice. Chill that for a few hours and carve out a little pie pumpkin as a dish!

Top it all off with cinnamon. You can dip apples, Teddy Grahams, vanilla wafers, or regular graham crackers!

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Picture & recipe courtesy of Carolina Charm

Puking Pumpkin
I cheat and use store-bought guacamole with my puking pumpkin, but really the pumpkin himself is the best part of this appetizer. I like to use a pie pumpkin because it’s the perfect size! The trick is to make the eyes look squeezed and the mouth big and open. Here’s a pattern for you!

halloween_party_prep

Adult Beverages
My mom is pretty good at picking out yummy seasonal adult beverages (even though she rarely indulges). One year she bought me a yummy apple pie liqueur and other year she gifted me pumpkin pie!

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Straight from the Fulton’s Harvest website, here are some of the yummiest recipes!

Great Southern Pumpkin
2 oz. Pumpkin Pie Cream Liqueur
1 oz. Honey Flavored Bourbon

Honey Apple Crisp
2 oz. Apple Pie Cream Liqueur
1 oz. Honey Flavored Bourbon

Dutch Apple Pie
3 oz. Apple Pie Liqueur
1 oz. Butterscotch Schnapps
1 oz. Vodka

They also have a yummy pumpkin pie ice cream recipe that I’ll be trying out soon! Check out all their recipes here!

This weekend K’s brother is getting married so all my party prep will have to wait! I’m looking forward to a family-filled weekend and some delicious cake!

What are some of your favorite Halloween recipes? What are your weekend plans?

-Louise

Dear Kyle || the letter link up

Dear Kyle,

Today marks eight years since I became yours and you became mine. It’s been eight years since you met my entire family, since my Aunt Pudgie told me what a nice young man you were, since you gifted me a beautiful silver cross necklace. Eight years since my parents gave me the best birthday present: permission to date the 20 year old that spent the last 6 months proving he’s worthy of their 17 year-old-daughter’s affection. It’s been eight years since we said goodbye to my birthday guests and leaned against your car in the driveway at the garage (long before it was your workshop) and you said, “So, we’re dating now, right?”

Kyle and Audrey. We’ve been Kyle and Audrey for eight years. Four years ago today you took me to dinner and bought me Starbucks and gave me a show-stopping ring. And of course I said, “yes.” Four years ago we decided that it was a forever thing. But I actually decided that eight years ago. I think you did, too.

I was such a wreck at 17. And I am such a wreck at 25. But you still love me. And I will always love you. I will always choose you. Always. The next eight years will be hard. They’ll also be easy at times. Sometimes I won’t like you and you won’t like me. But I will always choose you. I know that at times we will have to make this choice. But over anything or anyone, I choose you. For the next eight years and beyond.

I love our home because you live there. I love our dogs because they love you. I love vacation (and also slightly despise it) because you come with me. You’re my safe place. It’s the safest, most honest, challenging, coziest place in my world. You are the steel you weld- you’re honest, raw, and strong. You’re the foundation for so many incredible things: our love, our family, our life.

And I know I rarely say it (ha), but I am so damn proud of you. You have done so much in these last eight years. You work so incredibly hard to do good and make good. And I do, too. And we’re so lucky to have one another. I love that you can finish my sentences. I love that I know what you’re thinking. I love where we are right now- just you, me, Enzo, and Lylee. Paying the mortgage, building a business, working multiple jobs, and bonding over The Mindy Project and Fast ‘N Loud. I’m so in love with you.

So happy (original) anniversary to us. Our wedding was awesome, but this is my favorite anniversary because it’s the day I found my equal. I’m so happy to create more memories with you that I will remember random details about. I love you.

-A

. . . . .

Letter_LinkUp

Winter 2015 Book Challenge #scwbc15

I’m going to try this book challenge again with Megan at Semi-Charmed Kind of Life… Last time I got a total of 0 points. (HA!) I’m much better at the movie thing… Anyway, I just found out I will be husband-less for a week and a half next month (#businesstrip) so maybe I can really crack down and read some books!

(For the sake of your health and mine, let’s not hold our breaths.)

Ok, the rules can be found here, but basically the books must be +200 pgs (unless noted), no double-dipping in categories, I can only choose three re-reads, and I can’t start them early.

So here are the requirements and my choices!:

5 points: Read a book that has between 100 and 200 pages | The Halloween Tree (Ray Bradbury)
10 points: Read a debut book by any author | Murder at the Brightwell (Ashley Weaver)
10 points: Read a book that takes place in another country | The God of Small Things (Arundhati Roy)
10 points: Read a book that someone else has already used for the challenge | Speak (Laurie Halse Anderson)
(taken from Erin’s List)
15 points: Read a book published under a pseudonym | Assassin’s Apprentice (Robin Hobb)
15 points: Read a book with “boy,” “girl,” “man” or “woman” in the title | Girl Waits with Gun (Amy Stewart)
15 points: Read a book with a one-word title | Cinder (Marissa Meyer)
20 points: Read a book with a person’s first and last name in the title | Harry Potter & the Sorcerer’s Stone (JK Rowling)*
20 points: Read a food-themed book | Julie & Julia (Julie Powell)
20 points: Read a book with a verb in the title | The Air He Breathes (Brittainy C. Cherry)
30 points: Read two books with the same title (by different authors) | Cloud Atlas (David Mitchell) & The Cloud Atlas (Liam Callanan)
30 points: Read a nonfiction book and a fiction book about the same subject | Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald (Therese Anne Fowler) & Dear Scott, Dearest Zelda: The Love Letters of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald

*I don’t usually re-read books, but HP is an exception!

Like I said, this starts November 1 and goes until January 31. (Wow… January? Are we even ready for 2016? Woof…) I have little faith that I will get more than 10 points, but seeing as I’m only competing against myself 10 points sounds great! #scwbc15

What do you think of my choices? What would you pick? Anyone have some words of encouragement?

-Louise

Fall Swag Swap Link-Up

I know you’re sitting there thinking to yourself, “Louise, it’s Thursday. What are you doing here?” Well today just so happens to be the Fall Swag Swap link up and I need to gush about the incredible goodies my partner Faith sent me!

This is Faith:

life_with_mrs_g_and_the_artist

She blogs over at Life with Mrs. G and the Artist. I can’t even begin to list all the similarities between Faith and myself. She also has some pretty spectacular unique qualities, too! I’m most impressed by her ability to bargain-shop! My fall swap box was filled to the brim with so many awesome finds! She paid close attention to my love of scrapbooking as well as my obsession with history and historical fiction. Enough chit-chat, on to the goodies!

fall_swag_swap_link_up

Faith knows sign language which has me so impressed and inspired. I don’t think I’ve ever said it on here, but I want to learn the language so badly! She’s also starting down the long, rewarding, magical path of Harry Potter! It’s a little odd how excited I am for her to fight the Death Eaters with Harry and solve problems with Hermione and discover true friendship with Ron. And who can forget Neville’s bravery? Brb, now I need to go re-read the series…

ANYWAY, Faith loves movies and we bonded over historical fiction. She also has a dog!! I love dog people! It was really a great experience getting to know Faith better. I think my husband knows her a little better, too, because with every email he’d hear me say, “Guess what! She likes this and this and this, too! And she does this!”

fall_swag_swap_link_up

In her box Faith included two movies (neither of which I’ve seen!), a cute little mug with a sweater (how cool is that?), wasabi tape and paper for scrapbooking and card making (YAY YAY YAY!) and a beautiful journal. I’ve never seen a journal with binding like the one Faith sent along. I’m so excited to start writing! THANK YOU, Faith!

I’m so grateful for this Fall Swag Swap and being matched with Faith!

Thank you to our hosts: Bourbon, Lipstick, and Stilettos | Classy Sassy and a Bit Smartassy | Hey Kerri Blog | All the Joys | How to Make a Life | Set Free

-Louise

Fall Swag