Hello October! I love you, and your scents, and your mood, and your food. We welcome you with open arms!
In my drinks world, October means I’m drinking an oatmilk honey latte *almost* every day – sometimes from Starbucks, sometimes one that I made myself before sitting down at my desk. I have a super easy method / recipe coming for you soon that involves oatmilk, honey, salt, instant coffee, and just a regular old mason jar. Stay tuned. Fall is a beautiful thing.
In our personal life world, October means it’s baby month! We have just a few weeks left before little one makes her arrival and we are buzzing with… mostly excitement, a small side of “oh my gosh what is happening that kinda snuck up fast.”
In my work world, October getting ready for maternity leave. The last few months have been incredibly delicious as I’ve been working in advance mode making recipes for the fall, the holidays, even for January! And our team has been working hard to get all the pieces in place to share all that stuff in the coming weeks and months. But for me and my work self right now, I’m in the home stretch. I feel like a senior who’s about to graduate from high school and go immediately to college where the workload now involves caring for a toddler and a newborn at the same time, and that shouldn’t be too hard, right? Gulp.
What is October for you? In your drinks life? In your work life? I’m so glad you’re here – one last coffee date to check in before I’m taking off on my leave for a few months.
House / Kitchen Refresh
Here’s the before and not-quite-after of our kitchen refresh! We aren’t quite done yet (still missing hardware, backsplash, and the center island countertop which will be matching to the perimeter) but we have made LOTS of progress on our little kitchen refresh!
We bought our 90’s house almost a year ago now and while it’s super cozy and nice, we knew we’d probably want do some small things to just make it feel more like us. I have mixed feelings about taking this all on right before we bring a new baby home.
- We’re not really going anywhere for the next 6-9 months (thanks Covid!) so it will be suuuper nice to have the space where we spend 95% of our time feeling fresh and beautiful when it’s all said and done.
- It’s not going to be easier to get this done after baby arrives, so it’s kind of actually more convenient to do this while we only have one little nugget running around.
- The due date / delivery date gives us some leverage with having a hard deadline to work backwards from, and I have been VERY FIRM with myself and with contractors that we WILL NOT, CANNOT have any work being done in the house in the two weeks leading up to delivery. And I think if not for that, this might have taken a reeeally long time because I am not always good at keeping myself on track with projects.
- It’s been really disruptive. We knew it would be, but I think with having Solvi and having to move her around, get her out of the house, plan meals to happen in the basement or outside, not to mention having a very anxious dog to manage as well… it’s just been a bit of a ride.
- Decision fatigue is settling in – I spent at least three hours yesterday thinking about grout colors for our tile backsplash and I’m just at the point where, like, what am I doing. Most every decision I make is one that then gets questioned, re-done, and re-questioned.
All-in-all, we’ve been super happy with the work that’s been done (thank you to everyone who has done everything!) and grateful to be able to tackle one last little home-making project before we settle in for what could possibly be the longest – most snuggly, but still longest – winter of all time.
Outside is Everything
My heart just sings for the outdoors right now.
This week in Minnesota we have 60-ish degree weather with lots of sun, and it LOOKS like fall, and it SMELLS like fall, but it FEELS like just a sliver of summer still, and I love it.
Solvi has been “gooing hik-een” with us these last few weeks and it’s been so fun to see her explore in the woods, pointing out leaves (she loves to pretend they are bananas?) and trees and birds and the water… I’m just so thankful for outside.
Minnesota has its major seasonal drawbacks, most of which start sometime in January, but right now it is just pure bliss.
Where do you live? Do you get a true, amazing, glorious fall? Also worth mentioning that we are thinking of all our friends and readers on the West coast right now who are dealing with the fires, and realize it’s not a good outdoors situation in every place right now. ♡
Prepping for Baby: Freezer Meals
So part of prepping for baby and The Long Winter (yes, I’m a pioneer woman now – okay if I just start calling it that?) is doing a mega-prep of freezer meals.
We have a HUGE and AMAZING post with all kinds of freezer meal resources – it was published in 2018 before Solvi was born, and has been updated a few times since to add new favorite freezer meals and resources and all that.
But in the next week or two you can look for our LATEST update on the freezer meals post, because there are some new *extremely helpful* and *FREE* resources as well as a few new favorite freezer meal recipes that we’ve added to the collection.
The recipes I’ve prepped so far:
- Cauli Walnut Meat
- Tomato Soup
- Beef Stew
- Greek Pork Pitas
- Quinoa Burgers
- Sheet Pan Chicken Pitas (actually already ate this one – lol – so I will be making it again and doubling!)
- Lots of chocolate chip cookies
The ones I’d like to still add to the freezer before baby comes:
Listen, if you’re looking at this list and you’re like, wow, that’s a lot! Please know, I did all of these over the course of about 2-3 hours, all during Solvi’s naps. As a lifestyle policy, I don’t do complicated freezer meals. These are EASY freezer meals. Here’s the post for you to get a head start, but stay tuned – fresh recipes and resources coming soon!
Prepping for Baby: Everything Else
Gosh, there’s really not a whole lot to do this time around. We have the bassinet, the crib, the stroller, the bottles and pumps, and the baby clothes…
I feel like the biggest things to do to get ready are a) prep myself mentally / emotionally / physically, and b) prep Solvi.
We’ve been reading A LOT of books with her about being a big sister and I even made a book (social story style, drawing on some educational experience) about the baby’s arrival. This book in particular is one of her favorites.
Anyone have tips on prepping a toddler (or your own self) for the arrival of a new baby?
A Thing To Think About
Thanks to all the projects going on at home, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the idea that it’s really nice to have something that looks good, but it’s more important to have something that FEELS good.
And then I’ve been thinking about how that’s not just about homes. I think that can apply to almost everything.
How do things feel… at work? for our health? in our relationships? How it looks isn’t nearly as important as how it feels.
Just think: you’re doing it. In the good and the bad and the very, very difficult, you’re doing it. In case you need to hear it… this is a hard season, and you’re doing it, and you’re very loved.
Thanks for sharing this space with me! ♡