Monday, October 31, 2011

Pumpkin Bars & Brick-Layin'

I will never be called a "baker," I fear.  I love to bake, and I try things often, but honestly, I can mess up slice-and-bake cookies and brownies from a box.  (And do. Often).  But, I got these right:
Pumpkin Bars with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting
I tried this recipe for Vegan Pumpkin Bars with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting for Jones' class Halloween party.  I'm not vegan, but since kids under age 1 shouldn't have milk and eggs, I tried this recipe.  I took my time, followed the directions, and somehow these bars turned out perfect.  The frosting is super-sweet and thick, and balances nicely with the dense pumpkin-spice bar.

Doesn't it feel really good to follow steps and make something that turns out exactly how you hope?
Makes me think me of my new favorite song: Lost In My Mind by The Head and the Heart.

Sometimes you just need to do some "brick-layin'" to keep your "hands gettin' filled."

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Anticipating Saturday

Do you have plans for Saturday yet? If you live in Columbia and you said no to that, then you'd better start planning-there is so much to do! And the Fall weather that crept in last night will make a perfect backdrop for anything you choose!

Here's what the Hill family has planned:
Wesley Memorial UMC Neighborhood Fall Festival begins at 11 AM. FREE to attend and there will be live music by the Blue Iguanas Bluegrass Band, who are not only good, but very generous (they play the St. Lawrence Place Oyster Roast fundraiser every year at a very reasonable price).  There is also bouncy houses, a pumpkin patch, a fire truck, BBQ, and more!  We will be picking out our family pumpkin with Jones.  My sister, mom, and I took my nephew Ben to this a couple years ago and it was fun.

image via here

Next, we hope to attend the first-ever Carolina Green Fair in Finlay Park.  The event is going to be huge!  Live entertainment, local vendors and exhibitors, all showing easy ways for you and your family to make more sustainable choices.  The Free Times has an awesome publication detailing the entertainment, exhibitors, and containing a map of the event.  We hope to hear Lunch Money, a fun local children's band that will go on stage at 3:15.  We'll also make sure to stop by and see our friends from KD's Treehouse, and maybe catch The Blue Dogs at 2:30 too.
Admission is $5, or free if you bring 4 incandescent light bulbs to recycle.

Saturday night the hubs and I will be venturing out all by ourselves for dinner to celebrate his birthday, (which is today--happy birthday, James!)  He has not made up his mind on where we're going yet, but the ideas I've heard so far include Hunter Gatherer and Motor Supply; I'll let you know where we end up!  Afterward, we're meeting some friends at our favorite "Peach Pit After Dark-esque" spot: NiteCaps.  Here's to an adult night out!  (The babe is spending the night at my parents' house).

image of Motor Supply via here
image of Hunter Gatherer via here

The Nickelodeon is showing some pretty crazy stuff this weekend, and the SC State Fair is here through Sunday too. 
So, for real, plan your weekend already! 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A Word for Wednesday


etulant: moved to impatient irritation over a trifling annoyance

As in: Bill Compton's description of his newly-made vampire, Jessica: "She's petulant, dangerous, and scared."

image via here

I heard this word last night while watching our newest Netflix guilty pleasure, True Blood.  James is a long-time sci-fi/vampire/zombie- lover, but I started watching this show very reluctantly...and now I'm hooked.  It's addictively funny and clever. 

Biding our time until the final season of Entourage is released, and the next season of Californication--my other two Netflix guilty pleasures.  What shows do you watch--any recommendations?

Daily Drop Cap by Jessica Hische.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Fall Squash and Beer

After reading my October Real Simple magazine last weekend, I decided to try a recipe.  If you know me, you know that I love to cook, but I'm not very good at, when I saw that this recipe essentially has only 3 ingredients, I knew I could do it: Parmesan- Roasted Acorn Squash.

image via here

Last night I was eating some leftover squash and added some of my homemade bleu cheese dressing and some pine nuts, and it was practically a meal. Yum!

It also paired nicely with a Sierra Nevada Tumbler Autumn Brown Ale.  And a fire in the chiminea.

image via here

Fun family plans this weekend--an engagement party for my sweet brother-in-law Drew and his fiance, Kaley tonight, then birthday party at my in-laws house tomorrow night, and a baby shower for a dear friend on Sunday afternoon!

What are you up to this fine fall weekend?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Jones- 8 Months

The past month has been so fun, as Jones has started "scooting" (not quite crawling) and showing his sweet personality more and more...but it has also been a little rough because he has been sick a lot.  In the past 6 weeks Jones had had his first 3 illnesses--they definitely took their toll on our poor boy, and the whole household, as no one slept very well!  But, knock on wood, he is feeling better and I hope it is a long while before he is sick again.

Last month we took Jones to the Outerbanks to attend our friends', Heidi & Tom's, wedding, and they had their precious little boy there too, "LT."  We all loved seeing the boys meet for the first time, and getting to hang out in a beautiful house on the beach together for a few days.

Jones found his first crush in the OBX- 5 year old Jules!
chubby, naked, and bald--does it get any cuter?!
baby loves to travel
Sweet, amazing, boy...he is grabbing onto things and trying to pull-up...can't quite do it yet, but he may just bypass crawling altogether.  He is really good at entertaining himself these days--loves to talk to himself and play with blocks and rattle toys.  He loves when mommy sings (go figure!) and any music--he bounces in time and smiles.

Loving every second!
Happy Thursday!