Shop Small (Gentry California)

Since it is the holidays, families are on the hunt for the perfect Christmas pajamas.There is nothing better than cute and festive jammies that make the holiday extra special.

I have always been a firm believer in matching pjs, well actually matching anything on my girls and I am loving it. So when I got the opportunity to work with Gentry California, I was so so excited. I have always wanted the girls to have special traditions for the holidays and I definitely believe that having matching pajamas should be one of them!

Let me tell you Gentry California clothing is the absolute best. I could not believe how incredibly soft the pajamas were. The instant we received them the girls put them on. Needless to say they wore them for the next two days. It was a struggle to get them to take them off so that I could wash them.

Here is a little about the wonderful shop that is Gentry California:

  • Vibeka is the owner and designer.
  • It all started in 2011 when she started Gentry’s closet making hair bows and headbands.
  • Through the years the shop has grown and grown and in 2016 changed its name to Gentry California.
  • Now the focus of the shop is to make beautiful personalized and monogrammed designs for babies, kids, and their mamas.
  • These pieces are one of a kind and special for those that we love.
  • The quality is amazing.

I thought not only will my girls have something great to wear on Christmas morning but they will also have something great to wear for our holiday pictures. I am so happy that these turned out so well and know that my family will love these pictures in their Christmas cards!

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So if you are looking for some great pajamas or even a great present for the holidays, head on over to Gentry California!

Be sure to give them a follow on Instagram too!!

IMG_3202These amazing pajamas were provided to me in exchange for a blog post. All opinions are my own. I would never recommend a product that I absolutely do not enjoy!

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Gift Guide for Her

Some of the items below were gifted to me to be included into my gift guide. Also this post contains affiliate links.

The holidays are officially here and one of the best things about this time of year is gift giving. Women love to give gifts (I know I do) but we also love to receive them! It is such a joy to receive something that a loved one has taken the time to find and buy. However, shopping for women can sometimes be a daunting task for the men in their lives. This is where gift guides can come in handy! Below I have rounded up some of my favorite gifts for women and I am so thrilled to be sharing them with you all!!!

  1. Gentry California Thankful Shirt

I absolutely love getting clothes for Christmas. This shirt from Gentry California is so soft and comfy. I love the saying on the shirt and wear this shirt all the time! They have a great selection of women’s tees that would please any woman!

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2.  Luxa Jewelry bracelets

I have to say that these bracelets are absolutely elegant and beautiful for any woman. I love the ability to wear alone or with a number of pieces on the wrist. These are a perfect gift and I think should be bought in multiples because every piece they have look gorgeous together!

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3.  Nautica Blanket

I have to say I am a sucker for blankets. Living in Michigan I spend a lot of time cuddled up on the couch wrapped up in a blanket. This blanket is in the classic gray and white color combo that I am sure would fit well in most living rooms.

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4.  Bare Minerals lip glosses

Not one but six mini lip glosses in this great set from Bare Minerals. I love their products and the colors that they have are beautiful. The shades range from nude to pink with a sheer to medium coverage that makes the lips look fuller!

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5. Target coffee mug

This coffee cup is just too cute! The camper style mugs are definitely in right now and I think no one can go wrong with the saying on the cup! This is definitely on my wish list.

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6.  ModCloth postcards

I still love to send out cards and letters by mail. It is such a great feeling to write a cute little message and know that the person will soon be getting some happy mail! This postcard set is amazing! It mixes the love for the classics for the love of classic communication.

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7.  Fossil Handbag

A purse is a great go to for a gift. I have a fossil purse and absolutely love it. It is sturdy and gives me plenty of room for all the things I need to carry.

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8.  Goldy Fox bracelets

If you are looking for bracelets that not only can be worn every day but can add a little something for a night out, shop at Goldy Fox. These bracelets are carefully hand crafted with glass, shell, or gemstone beads. I love the ability to wear one solo or get a few of the bracelets for a nice layered look!

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9.  Her Silver Lining necklace

Looking for a simple and classic piece of jewelry for the one you love? Look no further then Her Silver Lining. The shop has a large selection of hand stamped pieces to give the gift a more personalized touch. The necklace I have is my favorite because I have all three of my children’s initials stamped on there.

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10.  She is Blank Space shirt

Another great shirt for Christmas is this beautiful “Fearfully and Wonderfully Made” shirt. I have received numerous compliments on this soft and comfortable tee. The beauty of a tee is that it can be worn for every day errands or dressed up for a night on the town!

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There you have it!! These are my picks for holiday gift shopping for the woman in your life!! Now get to it and start shopping!!

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Four Must-Have Tees for Pregnancy

When it comes to being pregnant one thing that no woman wants to deal with is clothing that is uncomfortable. There is just too many other things to worry about! Believe it or not there are great choices for pregnant women to be stylish and comfortable all at the same time.

My go to this pregnancy has been tees and pants. This kind of outfit can be dressed up or down while still maintaining all day comfort. I absolutely love a good t-shirt. What is even better is finding t-shirts that have fun little sayings on them. With being pregnant a t-shirt can become a great conversation piece.

I rounded up four must-have tees for pregnancy that are cute and functional for the ever growing belly. Each one of these tees have gotten me a lot of compliments and laughs!

  1. “Preggers” tee by The Blank Slate Designs. 
    What better way to announce to the world that yes indeed I am pregnant. I love this shirt and it is extremely soft. I got this shirt when I was in the beginning of the second trimester and I have to say that it is something that I continue to wear in my third trimester.Processed with VSCO with a6 preset

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  2. “Growing tiny humans is exhausting” by WeeStructed. 
    From one of my favorite shops, this shirt is absolutely perfect in telling the world exactly how I feel! It is an exhausting journey but so worth it in the end. This is another shirt that is made from soft fabric and allows for continuous wear throughout pregnancy. Better yet the shirt comes with ruched sidings which is a great must have for a pregnant lady!
  3. “Bump it up” by Vroom Clothing.
    How fun is this shirt? Gotta be proud of that bump you are growing!! I am in my last two months and I could not be more proud of this bump that is rapidly expanding! This shirt is so comfortable and I went for a size bigger so that I would have even more room to grow!Processed with VSCO with a6 preset
  4. “Ain’t no hood like motherhood” by Free to Be Threads.                                                                        There is truly no other hood I would love to be in than the hood of motherhood. It is such a beautiful experience and one that continues to surprise me. Whether a first time mama or a mama of three, this tee is perfect to show off proudly your love for being a mother! It is another shirt that is extremely comfortable

 

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There you have it! Four great shirts that will get any mama through all stages of pregnancy with the added bonus of being stylish and proud to wear that baby bump!

Be sure to check out these four wonderful shops and give them a follow on instagram!

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Vroom Clothing

Blank Slate Designs

Free to Be Threads

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Homeschooling with Cubby Case

As a homeschooling mama I am also looking for great tools to use to teach my girls. Sometimes I find it best to stray away a bit from the books and get some great hands on learning. This opens up the great possibility of using all senses and I believe making the information stick a little better.

A while back I came across Cubby Case on Instagram and knew that I needed to get my hands on one of these cases. The directors of curriculum design are both Harvard graduates that believe in finding the best products for teaching and learning. These cases are carefully put together and begins with the curriculum team examining various curriculum standards for children aged 5-9 years old. Then the team identifies learning outcomes essential for children’s educational development. Each product that is selected comes with a curriculum card that furthers the learning experience.

With every subscription box, the girls were overly excited about opening it to see what was inside. There were a lot of “oh look at this” and  “ah lets do this first”. After calming them down I got them to pick one item each day to try. The box came with five different products that covers a wide range of learning-

  • Chibitronics LED science project
  • InRoad PlayTape
  • K’nex Helicopter
  • Pieces of Another World Book
  • The Original Spirograph

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Today I am going to show just two of the products that came in the box.

First up was the play tape. The play tape came with the curriculum card titled urban planner. Let me explain quickly about the cards that come with each product. Each card has two sides. One side is labeled activity and the other side is labeled learning. The activity side of the card allows for the child to get actively involved with the product while still learning. I like to believe that there is unconscious learning happening here. The girls are so intrigued with playing that when we begin to start a discussion it seems that it comes easier to them in understanding the concept that is being discussed. The learning side of the card allows for discussion and examination of the overall theme that goes along with the product. So for example with the play tape, the card is discussing interesting facts about roads and gives questions so that the girls could further their learning about the subject.

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They had such a blast talking about roads and mapping out what their road design would look like. We also were able to go out that day it examine a number of different roads and explain what we were seeing. It was such a great learning tool to let them explore and look at their world for the answers.

 

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The next one we did was the K’nex helicopter. This being somewhat like legos, I knew my oldest would want to do it immediately. The card that came with this was mechanical engineer. So along with the K’nex, the girls were able to observe, create, reflect, and innovate. This got them not to just play with the toy but to examine what they were doing and to even think outside the box with creating something else with the K’nex. We talked about how in order to build there first needs to be plans and designs made. Then taking the designs and instructions, we are able to create and build to get the finished product.

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I cannot believe how fun this cubby case was! It had so many possibilities and the girls continue to play with each of the products inside the box. This was a great tool for us for our homeschooling adventure but the Cubby Case would be an excellent gift for any child looking to expand their imagination. Please be sure to check out their website and give them a follow on Instagram!

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This Cubby Case was provided to me in exchange for a blog post. All opinions are my own. I would never recommend a product that I absolutely do not enjoy!

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Maternity Style with Pink Blush (Review and Giveaway)

Being in my third pregnancy you would think I would have the pregnancy style down pat. Well I hate to break the news to you, I don’t. From the moment I became a mom I seemed to have lost all sense of fashion. I wear the very basic outfits. I do not accessorize. Sweatshirts and yoga pants are my go to for everything.

However with this being my last pregnancy, I wanted to make sure I cruised through it looking the best that I could look. Stepping out of my comfort zone, I wanted to find clothing that were comfortable during pregnancy yet stylish and cute.

I absolutely love the selection that Pink Blush has to offer. I gravitated towards the floral prints because it is something that I normally do not wear. But Pink Blush has a wide array of clothing to choose from that will get any woman through pregnancy and beyond!

The first dress I picked was this beautiful, right above the knee, ivory floral dress. I knew instantly I wanted to pair it with my denim shirt. It is so comfortable. I worried about wearing anything that was form fitting but I was not disappointed. The dress flatters the belly and not the other parts of my body that I want to hide! I cannot express enough how elegant the dress looks but still manages to maintain comfort for all day wear.

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The next dress I picked was this fun mint floral sash dress.

What I love about this dress is that since the material is stretchy, I have been able to wear it throughout my whole pregnancy. Another benefit with this dress is that since it is a wrap style I will be able to wear this after the pregnancy for easy breastfeeding. There is nothing better than having a piece of clothing that works not only for my ever growing body but also after during the rewarding part of feeding my baby boy.

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It was so important for me to find clothing that I can be comfortable in and still look pretty in. There is just too much other things during pregnancy that are of concern that clothing should not be one of them. Pink Blush is the place to go for stylish, affordable, easy to wear clothing!

So love what you see and want to get your own outfits from Pink Blush? Well here is your chance! Head over to my Instagram for a chance to win $75 to spend at Pink Blush on maternity or women’s clothing. Winner cannot have previously won a giveaway including a prize from Pink Blush in the last 3 months.

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Thanksgiving Craft with Hefty® Slider Bags.

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Sponsored Post: This post is sponsored by Hefty® but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

It’s November which means it is time to start prepping for the holidays. My favorite time of year is less than three weeks away and I am already trying to decide what to bring and make. Thanksgiving is the day where we get together with my family and spend from morning to night celebrating thankfulness. It is such a joy to spend time with those that I love.

I thought this year it would be nice to have a little craft for the kids to do to keep them busy (even if it’s just for ten minutes). Thanksgiving is not complete without doing at least one turkey craft full of color.

In order to make these craft bags, I headed over to my local Walmart to purchase the supplies, including Hefty® Slider Bags. I knew that Hefty® Slider Bags would work great in ensuring me that the supplies would stay put due to the MaxLock® track design. Another benefit I found is that Hefty® Slider Bags cost less than Ziploc® Slider Bags, which is a major plus for my wallet.

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Once I got all the supplies I needed, I first wanted to personalize the bags to add a special touch to the bags. I know my girls love anything that has their name on it! All I needed for making them personalized was:

  • cookie cutter
  • chalkboard paint
  • sponge paintbrush
  • chalk

I held the cookie cutter on the bag, painted, and voila! A quick and easy pumpkin name tag on each of the bags for the children’s names. It took a few hours to dry before I was able to write the names on the bags.

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So what is in the bag? I made a template that I used in order to cut out pieces for the turkey.

  • Five colorful turkey feathers
  • Turkey head and nose
  • Eyes
  • Sequins
  • Pom-poms
  • Glitter
  • Glue

This gives the children everything they need to make the turkey and decorate them any way that they would like! The Hefty® Slider Bags allow for easy storage and keeps everything contained for the children to keep track of their turkeys! This is such an easy craft to put together and I am sure any child would love to make a turkey on “turkey” day!

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Ibotta Extra Savings

Be sure to head over to Ibotta for an extra savings when you purchase Hefty® Slider Bags!

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Week 28- Bump Update

Wow! I cannot believe I am entering into the third trimester. In three short months I will be holding this baby boy in my arms. Cannot wait for that moment!

So what has been happening the last four weeks? Well for starters this boy is such a mover. I have it pinned down to the times throughout the day that he will move and kick in my belly.Lucky me he is moving around every two hours! We are now even able to see a foot or hand moving from one side to the other side which the girls find rather freaky. I love watching the girls reactions as they feel him move. The excitement and joy that they have makes this experience so much more worthwhile. Annaliese asks every day when he will be born. She wants him right now. Both girls continue to talk and sing to him every chance they get. It is so amazing to see how much love they have for him already.

I took the super awesome glucose test and it came back abnormal so I will have to go in for the three hour test. I was so upset and cried about it. First it is just plain annoying and second I absolutely despise getting my blood drawn. I am still the type of person that cries when a needle is in my presence. So it is something that I absolutely dread but obviously something that needs to be done.

In two weeks I will get a second ultrasound to check on the placenta. I was informed that the placenta is low-lying so if it has not expanded up then I will have placenta previa. It is something that I try not to worry about but everyone knows how that goes. I still worry. I still panic of the possibility. But the percentage is high that it all works out so I am definitely holding on to that!

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Shirt from She is Blank Space

Here are some details about this amazing experience!

Weight gain: I have gained a total of 19 pounds. Whoop whoop! Baby is just a growing and expanding this mama’s waist line!

Cravings: I have been totally loving oatmeal right now. It is something that I never ate before but for some reason I cannot get enough of it. I have been craving ice cream all day every day but then again I am not so sure that is really a craving cause I was the same way before hand.

Sleep: Sleep is obviously getting harder and harder. I toss and turn all night long in hopes of finding a comfortable spot. The baby has actually managed to wake me up by kicking me in the bladder. So bathroom breaks are happening at least once a night.

Overall feeling: Overall I am beginning to definitely feel pregnant. Moving is becoming harder. Breathing is becoming harder. I get tired pretty easily and tend to push myself over my limit. I try so hard to play with the girls but if I sit too long on the floor I can never get up!

I am looking forward to these next three months! With getting the nursery done and our baby shower, it will certainly be a hectic and fun time!

 

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In Due Time Book Review

I have said time and time again social media can be a great opportunity to build relationships with others. I have found so many people through blogging that I enjoy getting to know and reading their stories. It is such a nice community to be a part of. One women I have followed and gotten to know is Caroline Harries. I have followed her inspiring and beautiful journey of life, love, and infertility for over a year now. Her journey is encouraging. Her journey is uplifting. Her journey gives women in similar situations a place to feel comfort and that they are not alone.

Not many know this about myself, but I have suffered from infertility. The moment my husband and I got married we decided to try to conceive. It was a long journey to our first child. It took four years for us it get pregnant. The struggle to keep things together and the emotions that were experienced were heartbreaking yet taught me so much about the person I am.

Caroline has channeled not only her experiences in life but also her faith in God into a beautiful and much needed devotional. “In Due Time” is not just for women experiencing infertility. It is for anyone experiencing a time of waiting. Whether it is waiting for a new job, a new home, health, or a baby, this devotional will give you the guidance needed to see that “it is possible to have joy and declare that God is good, even in the midst of waiting.”

Throughout the 60 days, there are short but powerful messages to read and then spend time reflecting upon. At the end of each day of reading there is an application part. This allows you to examine what you are feeling about your situation and what possibly could be done to bring you closer to God. This devotional gives you hope and encouragement through a time that seems unbearable.

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The following is an excerpt from the book:

How Long, O Lord?

“How Long, O Lord? How Long?” How many times have
you asked this question as you have waited for God’s
promises to manifest in your life? It’s probably a
question that every believer has asked at some point in time. For
me, I feel if I knew the answer to the time frame of when my wait
would be over, then the wait wouldn’t be nearly as hard. But the
unknown, coupled with realizing God’s timing is much different
than mine, becomes exhausting. Some days I feel as though my
wait has no end in sight. Time after time I have cried out to the
Lord, “How long, O Lord, How Long?”

This part really resonated with me as I was reading. I do not know how many times I have cried out to God and asked how much longer? Waiting as an imperfect human is a struggle that we have all experienced. The day of devotion goes on to use the example of David and how in the Bible he asked the same question. His question and prayers were met with silence from God. But this does not mean that God did not hear him. “It is in God’s silence, that he is actually working.” So when we may be feeling like we are not able to handle the wait, know that God is working on our prayers and “he is waiting for the perfect time to bless you richly.”

This is just one example of what this beautiful and insightful devotional has to offer. It is filled with beautiful passages from the Bible that inspire and encourage each one of us to draw closer to God and build a strong and everlasting relationship with him.

So how can you get your hands on this book?? Well preorders are happening right now!! Click here to order yours today!

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Also I encourage to follow Caroline through her blog and instagram!

Hopefully everyone will enjoy this devotional as much as I am!

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Week 24-Bump Update

I am a little behind but last week I hit 24 weeks! I am six months pregnant and cannot believe it! This pregnancy is moving so quickly and I have to admit I am a little sad about it. I absolutely love being pregnant. Even with all the pain and discomfort, I love the feeling of being pregnant. The movement that I feel and the bond that I have with this baby boy is something that only I can experience. May sounds selfish but it is so incredibly special.

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Shirt – The Blank Slate Designs

The girls and Josh are able to really start feeling the baby. Madelyn lights up every time she feels him kick. The sweetness that these girls share with their baby brother is such a beautiful moment. They will talk and sing to him. Every night there are hugs and kisses for baby brother. With Josh, it will never get old experiencing each and every movement with him. Last night as we were talking, the baby was moving up a storm so I placed Josh’s hand on my belly. That was the first time Josh experienced such a constant movement from the baby. I, being the emotional mess that I am, just started to cry. It is a moment that I time and time again love. For the man I love to be able to get a glimpse of what I am feeling. For his face to light up and have a big smile on his face, it means everything.

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Here are a few details about this amazing experience!

Weight gain: I have gained a total of 12 pounds so far! I am at the heaviest I have ever been in my life. I know, I know, I am pregnant, but it is was still a little bit of a shock to see that number on the scale.

Cravings: Still am craving pretty much anything and everything! One thing I did notice that is hard for me to eat is chicken breasts. It is something we eat a lot of so that it has not been the greatest.

Sleep: Hah! Sleep. I miss sleep. I will not experience a good night’s sleep for a few more years. I am extremely uncomfortable and cannot find a position that works for me and the baby. The bed is becoming more cramped and filled with a surplus of pillows. Another fun experience that occurs at night, charlie horses. Nothing like a pregnant woman shooting out of bed with horrible leg pain.

Overall feeling: Overall I feel good most of the time. There are some days where he sits really low causing back pain. But then there are some days where he sits really high causing pressure on my lungs and bladder. I am starting the beginning stages of nesting. The bedrooms in our home are extremely tiny and with putting the girls back into one room, I need to make some necessary toy cut. Once I can get this all taken care of then I can start putting together the nursery!

This is quickly passing by and with just over three months to go, I need to get moving to get this house ready for baby brother!

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Making Memories in the Fall

Fall is my favorite season. The leaves changing, the crisp air, the fires, the delicious comfort food. There are so many wonderful things to experience during this season. With having kids, I feel like it just amplifies the excitement and the adventures of the season. One adventure that I love to share year after year with my girls is going to the pumpkin patch.

This year was a little different. It was a beautiful day during the week and I just did not feel like wasting the possibility of the day. So we loaded up and went to the pumpkin patch. Usually we go with family or at least my husband tags along but this time it was just me and the girls. This I found to be extra special. In just a few short months it will no longer be just the girls and I. So I am trying my best to spend as much girl time as possible.

Immediately when we got there Madelyn grabbed a wagon and we walked the long path to the pumpkin patch. If the girls could they would have picked out the the first pumpkin they saw and our trip would have been over in five minutes. But I encouraged them to explore and exploring is what we did! We found small ones, green ones, misshapen ones, and one that made them think of the great pumpkin!

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Second we explored the apples. We did not need to pick apples today (we have already canned and froze apples) but it was still a great learning lesson for school. In school we are learning about apples and all the different kinds that are available. There was such a variety growing that we talked and talked about what we learned. I think this falls under the win category since we did not do school that day!

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Next up on the agenda were donuts!! We are suckers for yummy sugar and cinnamon donuts so we had to get some to enjoy. As we sat there enjoying our donuts, we talked about silly stuff, laughed at each other’s sugary faces, and made goofy faces for the camera!

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Lastly we walked and looked at the smaller and unique pumpkins and picked out some gourds. The girls spent about 10 minutes picking out the gourds they wanted to bring home. Our house is now completely covered in gourds, pumpkins, and all things that scream fall.

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This was definitely a great day and a day that will be remembered in our handful of pumpkin patch memories! Continuing to make memories with those that I love and embracing those moments that may seem so ordinary is truly a blessing. These moments are so fleeting and I know personally I want to look back and have ones to fondly reflect on.

 

 

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