October 11, 2013

7 Quick Takes - hello's, goodbye's, and memories

It's October!!!!!!!  Ok, that's not news.  We're 11 days in.  But blogging has not been at the top of my priority list since the start of the month.  So here's my celebration.  Hooray!  I love October so much.  It's my favorite-est month of the whole year.  The air is crisp.  The trees are gorgeous.  The time to snuggle up with a hot bowl of soup next to your favorite person is here and now.

One of the pretty tree-lined streets in our neighborhood

But October is more than just these tactile delights.  It's also my preferred time for change.  To renew my convictions, to freshen my goals, to look back and appreciate my accomplishments from the past year. For many people that time is around the turning of the new year, but throughout my entire life I have always marked notable change in October.  Maybe I'm inspired by the changing in season, or perhaps I'm subconsciously connecting a "new start" with the beginning of school.   But I definitely have a pattern of change and new beginnings in the month of October.  i.e. 8 years ago, I met my husband in October; 5 years ago he proposed in October; 4 years ago I embarked on a lifestyle change to be healthier, to lose weight and change how I approach life; 3 years ago I started my first full-time job; last year I announced our pregnancy; and this year.....
We bought a house!  Oh my goodness, that is the biggest, scariest most exciting "adult" decision we have ever made.  I'll compile a collection of lessons learned for other first time home buyers in a post later this month.  Stay tuned!  

Good thing we're taking this step in our lives now because our rental house was just put on the market. The process has been another element to this whirlwind of change that first-time home buyers don't typically experience.  We have to balance the sale of our current home with the purchase of our new one (fortunately, we don't have the financial contingency that would typically be present).  This week a professional photographer captured our home.  At first I was a bit self-conscious, but this exercise was actually quite fun!  I was able to see how my design and presentation of the home would appear to the masses.  The photographer and listing agent complemented our staging and how nicely the house shows.  So nice to hear our house feels like a lovely, welcoming home!

Last weekend my family came to visit.  Amidst watching football and eating lots of yummy food, we decided to try our hands at crafting once again.  Back in the day my sisters and I were avid 4-H-ers and let me tell you...do we ever have a collection of treasures.  So, we thought we'd resurrect the good ol' days.

What do you think of my grown up version of this fall craft?  Cost comparison (because I can't help but share a good deal): making this wreath myself cost me $17.  If I were to buy on Etsy: $55! Maybe I should go into business...

Lately, I've thoroughly enjoyed trying new recipes, and having some pretty good success. :) That's not always the case, hence the qualifier.  I was trying to decide which was my favorite of most recent line up...and it was almost a tie, but I think this recipe is the winner, hands down:

photo courtesy of Rita at Pink Bites
I found the recipe via Pinterest (of course), and most people who collect recipes on Pinterest have found this one.  So I'm not sharing anything new and special, but it was SO. GOOD. A few notes:

Not only was this YUMMY, it was quick.  And inexpensive.  I always have these ingredients on hand (part of the reason it was so inexpensive).  I did use a flank steak, which can be pricier when purchased at the grocery store (especially since we eat organic animal products), but we bought a side of beef earlier this year so our meat has been much more reasonable. I paired the dish with orange-scented brown rice and a green salad.  Made great left overs, too!

Let's see.  Oh, I had read/heard at some point that October was the best time of year to take care of your car maintenance.  This didn't really come to mind as I was shopping around for the best deals for our mileage tune-ups.  Both cars were getting up there in mileage, and per the maintenance schedule (likely found in your glove compartment if you are not familiar with this little book already) we needed to get some work done.  So I called Toyota.  Got a quote.  Called Firestone.  Got a really GREAT quote (lots of discounts & promos).  And called Les Schawb and Oil Can Henry's.  The verdict?  Each company was offering deals throughout the month of October.  We took the best deals offered for our needs and went with Firestone (I am in no way sponsored by them, this is just my personal experience).  Not only were we able to get EVERYTHING, I mean the whole shibang--tires, alignment, balance, full auto inspection--discounted, the service in our area was fantastic.  So. My conclusion, October is the best time to maintain your car.  And yes, it's confirmed that October (and September) is also the best month to buy a car.

One last little thing.  This month is Respect Life Month and, fittingly, it is also Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. On October 15th--next Tuesday--my family and I will be remembering Samuel David, our little boy who died at 12 days old from Trisomy 13 this past May by lighting a candle at 7:00 PM for one hour.  We will also be remembering our little nie-phew who was lost via miscarriage last December.  Our hearts have been forever changed because of these lives.  We love more deeply and live more intentionally.  I want to invite you to remember these little people with us next week by lighting a candle in your own home, 7:00 PM across all time zones.

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations on the new house! How exciting! I will definitely be holding you all in prayer on Tuesday.