Tuesday, September 29, 2015

25 Fall Themed Date Nights

 photo IMG_0757_zps5iragzw3.jpg 

The seasons are changing.  And with fall comes cooler weather, pumpkin patches, and hot apple cider.  Fall also brings new fun opportunities to going on a date with your spouse.  Try some of these Fall Themed Date Nights to reconnect.

1. Cheer on your local high school/college football team.
2. Visit a pumpkin patch and pick out your favorite.
3. Carve pumpkins together.  See who can be the most creative.
4. Toast pumpkin seeds.  Who likes sweet and who likes spicy?
5. Find a spot to watch a movie in the park.  Don't forget the blankets and hot cocoa.
6. Visit a local winery to sample.  Pack a picnic lunch and enjoy the fall colors.
7. Head to the nearest state park and explore in the cooler weather.
8. Go apple picking.  Find the nearest U-pick farm and savor the season.
9. Bake something with those apples.  My favorites is these Carmel Apple Cheesecake Bars.  Or really any of these.
10. Go garage saling together.  What treasure can you find?
11. Hike those trails that were too hot in the summer.
12. Take some fall portraits while you're on your hike.  Make sure to squeeze in together for a couple's shot.
13. Maybe it's still warm enough for one last swim.  Take a trip to the lake or walk along the beach.
14. Take a hay ride.  Many pumpkin patches offer them.  Or check with your local chamber for fall hay rides.
15. Go to a haunted house.  There are several in our area, ranging from silly fun to truly frightening.
16. Invite other couple over for a bonfire.
17. While you're at it, roast marshmallows and make s'mores.
18. Have a coffee date and sample some seasonal treats, including pumpkin donuts.
19. Attend an outdoor concert or Shakespeare in the park.  Now's the time to snuggle up in those sweaters and blankets.
20. Host a chili cook-off. Invite friends over and don't forget the cornbread.
21. Host a Monday night football party.  Have everyone bring their favorite appetizer.
22. Surprise your spouse at work with a picnic lunch.  Find a local park to spend the lunch hour.
23. Attend a cooking class together and discover some new recipes for the holidays.
24. Start planning your Thanksgiving menu.  Test run your favorite desert to enjoy after the kids go to bed.
25. Find a spot under a changing tree to enjoy a book.  Whether reading the same book or different books, it's a nice time to talk and share what you're reading.

What are your favorite fall date nights?
Don't forget to share in the comments below.

Friday, September 25, 2015

2015 September Bookmarks

2015 Bookmarks Title photo IMG_4519_zps6c71285c.jpg

*Bookmarks is an online book club hosted at Creative2xmom. Here we discuss the books we've read in the past month as well as the suggested reading. Our suggested reading for September was Love Does by Bob Goff.

 These are the books I read this month:

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty--When I discovered that I was 8th on the wait list for this book, I realized it must have been creating more of a buzz than I thought.  And when I finally got my hands on it and read it within a week, I realized why.  The story of almost 40 year old Alice who bumps her head at the gym and can't remember the last 10 years of her life... waking up to find she has three kids and her marriage is crumbling... and there's a boyfriend in the picture and her best friend, who she doesn't even remember, is dead... and her life looks nothing like she thought it would.  Sitting in my thirties with 14 years of marriage behind me, I found that I related to this book in both lovely and scary ways.  Life is not what I thought it would be 10 years ago and that's both shocking and comforting.  As for Alice, she must decide if she wants this 10 year later life... or if she's going to fight to turn back the clock.

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster-- I have to admit that my husband's been taking over much of the evening reading with the kids, but I have had a chance to sit in once in awhile and catch bits of the story.  This one follows "bored" Milo who isn't content at any point in his life.  Not content here and definitely not content when he gets where he's going.  When he receives a mysterious package, it takes him on a whirlwind adventure though linguistics and word play.  It was slightly over Lydia's head (7 yrs), but Noah loved it (9 years).

Our suggested reading for September was Love Does by Bob Goff--  This was another one that had a long wait list at the library and I was lucky enough to get it in time.  A collection of essays, Goff sets about to show us what Love Does in every day situations.  It's not always the extraordinary that wins out.  Often it's the ordinary everyday actions that create a breathtaking life.  And it's in the lives of the ordinary that God chooses to display his love.  While I'm generally not a fan of essay collections, this one kept my engaged throughout and left me feeling challenged.  It was eye opening to see the way that Goff wove a tale of action, purpose and love throughout the entire book.  And to know that those same opportunities (and more) exist in my life as well.

So what are your bookmarks this month?

Tell us in the comments about the books you're chewing on. Or link up a review from your own blog. Let's share the books we're finding, good and bad. And give us your thoughts on Love Does by Bob Goff.

And come back Oct 30th as we discuss Sparkly Green Earrings: Catching the Light at Every Turn by Melanie Shankle.

*Linked to these Parties

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

10 Beginning Chapter Series

I discovered around second or third grade that my kids were ready to take a leap in their reading.  Story books become too easy and chapter books are overwhelming.  There's a gap in there that requires a beginning chapter series to keep your kids engaged.

And what do beginning chapter books look like?  The print is generally larger, the chapters are shorter, and the story is broke up to keep kid reading and to provide context clues for the story.

Through the years, these have been some of our favorites.  I hope they inspire the little reader in your life!

Cam Jensen

Ready Freddy


A to Z Mysteries

Capitol Mysteries

Pinstripe Mysteries

Magic Treehouse Mysteries

Flat Stanley

Sly Sleuth

Mercy Watson

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Josiah's 4th Birthday-- Dinosaur Train Style

A couple of days ago, I shared our preparations for Josiah's Dinosaur Train birthday party.  As I mentioned, he loves learning all about dinosaurs from watching PBS' Dinosaur Train and this was the perfect theme for his 4th birthday.  We love this little guy and we're so happy he's a part of our family.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Dinosaur Train Party Prep

My little guy is obsessed with Dinosaur Train.  Dinosaurs and Trains... how can you go wrong with a four year old?  It's perfect.

I love how PBS can combine preschool entertainment and learning at the same time.  And Dinosaur Train has been awesome for that.  A little fun and science all rolled into one...

So when it came to choosing a theme for his birthday party this year, it was easy.  Hope this video inspires you!

Resources We Used:

Dinosaur Birthday Party Ideas

Dinosaur Train Birthday Party

Dinosaur Masks

Dinosaur Train Party

Dinosaur Birthday Party

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Berenstain Bears God Bless Our Country {Review}

Here we are again... another Berenstain Bears book.  I told you we love them.

The Bears are all getting ready for the big 4th of July parade.  Mama's sewing flags, Papa's breaking out his uniform, and the cubs are decorating their bikes.  So when the cubs start asking about the birth of our country, Mama and Papa tell them about our history and how we fought for our freedom.  I love that the author took the time to honor soldiers by including them in the parade and featuring Papa in his military uniform.

Also included in this book are a page of stickers as well as reading comprehension questions and activities to extend the story.

As always the illustrations are colorful and the story is age appropriate.  Written to 4-8 year olds, God Bless Our Country's a good introduction to our country's history.  And a great place to start for further discussion.

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book for review.  All opinions are my own.

Related Posts with Thumbnails