Thursday, October 30, 2014

 Our annual pumpkin carving competition happened this past weekend.
The kids are so into this!
The little ones painted, while the big boys are old enough to carve.  They really come up with some neat ideas.

Little Joe trying to recreate the pumpkin he saw at the Valle Crusis Fair.

I think he did a great job!

Look at all of his ideas!
I told you they take this seriously.

The parade of pumpkins.



Darryl (being strangled by Joe)




The votes were cast.
It was tie this year.

Darryl and Nicholas tied for first place.

Good job guys.
I look forward to it again next year!

 On Saturday night after we returned from the festival, we had some chili I had prepared earlier in the crockpot.  I LOVE my crockpot.  It was so great to come back to a warm cabin and yummy smells greeting us in the cozy kitchen.  We all got in our jammies and had a nice dinner.  Then we sat on the front porch with some hot cocoa.  We were all hoping to see the resident bear we had been warned about.  Apparently, he likes to sit in the neighbors flower bushes.  Of course, we would be at a safe distance, but we all hoped to get a glimpse.  He must have been out foraging for his last meals before winter because we never did see him.

The next morning, we packed up and headed our for our last day of fun.

We packed a picnic lunch and headed to the top of Mount Jefferson.
You can see three states from there and several mountain ranges.
It was beautiful, but so cold.  43 and WINDY!
We all agreed it was great to see, but we didn't want to eat our lunch there.

We headed back down and found a lovely park in Boone. 
We set up our picnic, ate and then let the kids play for a couple of hours.

It was a wonderful way to celebrate my birthday.


Continuing on with our mountain trip...

We were able to enjoy dinner outside at a neat restaurant.  The cold front was blowing in that night, but we got to sneak in a couple more hours of cool weather before it turned C.O.L.D.

The kids loved dancing on the stage while we waited for our meal.

My oldest and youngest treasures.

We cuddled on the front porch in our was cold!

Some of my sweets by the neat creak across the street.

He is getting so big, but is still such a cuddle bug.
I love him.

She is enjoying the view on Daddy's shoulders.

Joseph kept asking to take this pumpkin home.  He loved the painted face.
Of course, when we decorated our pumpkins at home, he tried to recreate what he saw.
Sweet boy.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Darryl surprised me by renting the sweetest, coziest cabin.
It was nestled at the foot of the mountain and had a rushing creek across the street.  
I set up camp on the porch.
Rocking chair, knitting, book, something warm to drink...It was heavenly!

Isn't it precious inside?

The cabin and neighboring cabin had a couple of apple trees that were dripping with apples.
I asked the woman next door if she was going to use the apples and she told us to take them all!
So, I sent the big boys up into the trees (which they loved) and we filled bags to the rim.
I will be busy this fall making applesauce and apple butter, for sure!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

 My birthday this year was celebrated in the mountains once again.
My favorite place (next to my home) with my favorite people.
I love to attend the Valle Crusis Country Fair.
It is such a lovely fair set in the valley surrounded by mountains.
This fair is all about artisans! 
 Lovely, handmade works are aplenty.
  A feast for the eyes of a fellow crafter for sure!  It's so hard for me to restrain myself and not want to make everything I saw!
The kids love the fresh pressed apple cider and the surrounding views.
We all have such a wonderful time.
 Our first stop when we got to the mountains was a picnic on the Blue Ridge Parkway.
We love to sit at one of the lookouts and enjoy the views.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

On Darryl's birthday this year, we headed to Crowder's Mountain for a lovely hike and picnic.
I had planned on taking him to Lazy 5 Ranch in Mooresville.  He loves animals and has asked several times to go there (much to my chagrin...for some reason I just don't like things like that). 
I figured it was the least I could do for him on such a special day, but he confided that he wanted to go on a hike instead.  
Yeah for me!
  I mean him, of course.  

So, I packed us a yummy picnic and we headed off to explore the mountain.
 It was a lovely day.
 The leaves were just beginning to change.
  The air was crisp and the sun felt so wonderful!
We hiked around the lake and had a great time exploring.
Upon leaving the park, we saw a man painting a mountain landscape.  We sat and talked with him a bit.  He had such wonderful stories and told us he was the *official* painter of Crowder Mountain State Park.  It was neat to watch him at his craft.

Such a sweet, perfect day.

Happy Birthday to my sweet husband!
May God grant you many years.
I love you.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Little babycakes loves Susan Boynton books. 
 She is always walking around the house holding one pleading with her sweet eyes for someone to read it to her over and over and over again.

We always oblige.

Who can resist sweet cuddles with a sweet baby?

These big boys can not.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

 Even Juliana got to go down the slides.
Look at her face!

I just want to smooch those cheeks!

Her little bow lips.