Guess who’s excited that the AAASSSTTTRRROOOOOSSS have made the playoffs? I swear this kid is their Fan Numero Uno. His adorable hat is too big for him, but it’s by far his favorite item of clothing. This little guy will sit down and watch the game along with than any other big-bellied fella around.

corey douglas

He’s actually got a really good arm, too. I’m secretly hoping he’ll be a pitcher one day, (By the way, did you know Pitcher was my maiden name?) It’s fitting, you know?

corey douglas

I’ve been having some fun with my new camera. I look like a tourist walking around my own home to be honest. I’m sure the neighbors have been talking…

I’m going to name this iconic photo: Troll in Hiding

corey douglas

I know, it’s probably not nice to call my own kid a troll. But that adorable squishiness of a nose makes me wanna sing, “Can’t Stop the Feeling”.

corey douglas

This photo will be named: Hiya Mama! 

corey douglas


I got a couple of great cookbooks for my birthday, and I’ve FINALLY gotten a chance to cook from them this week. The first recipe I tried from Thug Kitchen: The Official Cookbook was Wedding Soup with White Bean Balls and Kale (apologize for the profanity if you click the link – that’s their shtick and it’s hilarious). I’ve gotta be honest: it’s health food. BUT if you can get your brain around that, this recipe was fantastic.

thug kitchen wedding soup

It’s perfect for a fall lunch or dinner, and it’s only 240 calories per serving and just 2g fat. I’d definitely suggest that if you’re wanting to make healthy, easy dinners that you grab this cookbook. The white bean balls (pictured below) are packed with protein and tons of flavor. Definitely cook and store the pasta + bean balls separately from the soup unless you’re eating it all at once. 

thug kitchen wedding soup


The second recipe from my new birthday cookbooks was a slow cooker recipe from Texas Slow Cooker by Cheryl Alters Jamison. I gave the Chicken Tortilla Soup a-go on Crockpot Wednesday (it’s cooking as I’m typing), so I’ll post more about that lovely yummy later.


ANNNDDD I tried a recipe from an oldie, but a goodie cookbook: Barefoot Contessa’s Back to Basics.

We had her Mustard Roasted Fish a long time ago back when we lived in Dallas, and it was phenomenal. I have no idea why it’s taken me so long to make this deliciousness again. The best part of this recipe is that it’s STUPID EASY to make – a.k.a. it’s perfect for busy weeknights.

First, you make yer sauce:

capers + Dijon mustard + whole grain mustard + minced shallots + creme fraiche (or substitute Mexican crema like we did) + Kosher salt + black pepper

barefoot contessa mustard roasted fish

Mix it all up.

barefoot contessa mustard roasted fish

Sprinkle your fish (we used Red Snapper) liberally with Kosher salt and black pepper.

barefoot contessa mustard roasted fish

Spread the sauce on the bottom of an oven-proof dish. Place the fish on top (skin-side down). Cover with remaining sauce. Bake uncovered at 425 for about 15 minutes. Voila. Dinner is done!

barefoot contessa mustard roasted fish

Click Here to go to Barefoot Contessa’s Original Recipe


To go with the fish, I made a little roasted vegetable medley with:

thin asparagus + French green beans (Haricot Verts) + Yukon Gold potatoes + yellow onion

It was a one-pan side dish that was so yummy and still good for us!

roasted vegetables

roasted vegetables

Here’s whatchya do:

Preheat oven to 425.

In a large oven-proof dish (I use a 13×9 Pyrex pan), toss some quartered Yukon Gold potatoes, 1 thinly sliced yellow onion, EVOO, and some Kosher salt and pepper. Roast at 425 for about 25 minutes.

Add some French green beans (Haricot Verts) + thin asparagus cut into 2″ pieces. Toss to combine, then roast for another 15 minutes.

Right after you pull the dish from the oven, liberally sprinkle on some freshly grated Parmesan cheese.

roasted vegetables

Like I said before, I’ve been loving my new camera. I got a little carried away the other day because the weather + lighting were just perfect.

Big C enjoyed chunking the ball across the yard, running after it, narrowly escaping certain disaster in the form of dog poop, and repeating the whole process again. It was a good time!

corey douglas

“Look Ma, No Poop!”

corey douglas

Our Sweet “Henny Penny” will NOT play ball if it’s any other kind of ball besides a football. Who knew? Is Air Bud still a thing?

penny

Down… Set…

penny

Nahhh.

penny

 

We got to watch the first game of the World Series on our porch Tuesday night. The weather was cool and crisp (and yes, we live in Houston). Jon Boy grilled some pork chops, and we ate the leftovers of our roasted veggies (above). Of course the Astros didn’t win, but otherwise it was the perfect way to end the day.

astros

Do your neighbors BOO one another? It’s the cutest thing if you haven’t heard of it! Basically, you print off the paper below, make a bag of Halloween goodies, and leave it on your neighbor’s porch. It’s a sweet idea and a great way to build some community! It’s our second year to be BOOED, and we love it!

We’ve Been Booed + You’ve Been Booed Printable

youve-been-booed

 Ideas for the Boo Bag

Think: Dollar Tree or Target Dollar area – kids’ coloring packets, stickers, window decals, Halloween decorations, candy, cookies, candles, cocktail napkins, and you can throw it all in a cute little Halloween bag the kids can use to Trick-or-Treat. [Thanks to my fave neighbor who gave me all these ideas – muah!]


I’ve gotta share a quick preview of Corey’s Halloween costume…

aviator costume


Are y’all ready for Halloween? It’ll be here in less than a week, y’all! What are you doing for the big day?

Pumpkin patches + adorable kids – is there anything better? I think not.

pumpkin patch

Definitely not.

corey douglas

Corey’s school puts on the most adorable pumpkin patch every year with themed pumpkin displays, a slide made out of hay, and even a bicycle ride. It’s adorable! Just look at that sweaty little man trying to pick up all the “bigg puunnkiiinnnns!” He kept saying, “I stwong Mama!” Gahhhh. I just love that kid + this time of year. Simply the best!

corey douglas

Now, if only Houston would jump on board. This friggin’ weather is ridiculous. 87 and feels like 98 with humidity. Gross. At least the puppy and the kid enjoy it!

corey douglas

There was ONE day this week that was actually cool enough to dress “fall” like. I grabbed my leggings and plaid shirt faster than Lucy swipes the football from Charlie Brown.

fall outfit

I wanted to share a few of my Fall Favorites on this Fabulous Friday the 13th! I like alliteration, can you tell? 

Here we go!

Favorite Side Right Now: Cauliflower Rice 2.0

cauliflower rice

We had it this week with a little Taco Tuesday Bowl – ground beef taco meat, roasted veggies, avocado, tomato, cilantro, and slow-simmered black beans (recipe coming soon). The whole bowl was only about 470 calories and still super filling + delicious.

taco tuesday bowl

Favorite Nail Color Right Now: Dark Hunter Green – like almost black. I’ve found that pure black looks pretty boo-boo on my skin, so I went for a dark green and I love it! I’m still all about that dip manicure, too. It lasts forever (even with all my cooking, dishes, LAUNDRY, and everything else). I also think it’s a lot better for your natural nails than gel manicures. Try it if you haven’t yet!

dip manicure

Favorite Clothes Right Now:

These jeans are everything (okay, they call them pants, but whatever… to me they’re jeans). They don’t stretch out too much throughout the day, and that ab-solution band really holds and tucks things that need holding and tucking if you know what I mean. Plus, they come in some super cute colors!

Wit & Wisdom Ab-solution Stretch Twill Skinny Pants

ab-solution stretch twill skinny pants

These fellas are worth the money. They hug places that need to be hugged and still feel super comfy. I wear these bad boys with the Target t-shirt below as my daily Mom Uniform. They still makes me feel cute while being able to be functionally mom-ish.

Madewell High Rise Skinny Jeans

Madewell High Rise Skinny Jeans

THIS T-SHIRT RIGHT HERE! I can’t even. The v-neck is a great length (not too high and not so low that you show your goodies when you bend over for that dropped bunch of Goldfish) plus the sides and back are great lengths, too. I love to wear mine with the jeans above, but also with leggings.

Target Mossimo Short Sleeve Relaxed V Neck T Shirt

Target Mossimo Short Sleeve Relaxed V Neck T Shirt

Favorite Movie Right Now:

(No explanation needed – it’s awesome + Corey loves it)

it's the great pumpkin charlie brown

Favorite Halloween Garb Right Now: This adorable shirt from Magpie’s Gifts in Cypress. Baseball tee + Halloween + the word Y’all. I’m sold.

magpie's halloween shirt

Music class is always fun with this chubby bunny. No idea why my face looks like a hot mess, but he’s too cute. I had to share his joy.

corey douglas

Have I mentioned that my kid is IN LOVE with his music teacher? He literally stares at her like this for the ENTIRE music class. It’s adorable, but also, dude I’m paying for you to sing + dance. Not drool over your teacher.

corey douglas

Okay, I forgive you. You cute.

corey douglas

What are YOUR favorite things for fall (or in general) right now? 

Cheers to the weekend, y’all!

friday the 13th meme

Hellloooooooo October and all things spooky, pumpkiny, and ghouly! I love this time of year so much I can’t even handle. I literally decorate our house differently every month between August and December. I’m getting more obsessed every year. Sorry, not sorry.

I bought a ton of stuff at the end of last year’s Halloween (yupp, I’m that much of a freak) and busted them out for this year. Wait until you see what Penny’s costume is this year. It’s epic.

Here are a few pics of this year’s Halloween decor:

halloween decor

halloween decor

halloween decor

halloween decor

I didn’t do much to this little hutch (hey that rhymed) besides throw on a few more Halloween – ish pieces of decor.

halloween decor

halloween decor

Halloween decor

Halloween decor

Halloween decor

Halloween decor

Halloween decor

I’ll post Penny’s costume when the time is right! Get ready, y’all.


Now for some Thoughts for Thursday:

Champagne Dreams Gourmet Gummies

These sound fantastic. Gummies that taste like champs + rosé. What’s not to love? Plus, they’re less than $6! Plus, plus some proceeds go to charity. Booze + Gummies + Charity. Done.

champagne dreams gourmet gummies

Honey Bubbles Wine

Speaking of booze + charity, this sparkling moscato is helping to save Honey Bees with each purchase. I’m going to be on the lookout the next time I get down to Total Wine & More. I’ve read that this moscato isn’t too sweet (which I hate), so I’m definitely down to try it since it’s only $20.

honey bubbles moscato

Potluck Nation Blog

I can’t remember the first time I heard about this concept, but I fell in love with it at first… sight? sound? Anywho. It’s basically the concept that pot lucks are the perfect venue for diverse folks to come together, talk about tough issues, and share a delicious meal together. Let’s face it: food brings people together. E’reybody’s got a rumbly tumbly. We’ve all gotta eat. Why not do it while making the world a better place? LOVE THIS! Who wants to do one with me?!

Not joking. Comment if you’re interested.

potluck nation

This sweet guy has had a little tummy bug this past week. We stayed home a lot this week, snuggled, and watched “Manannnaa” aka Moana. We, of course, had to have a chair full of our besties while we watched.

corey douglas

Also, somebody finally realized he loves hi Mickey Mouse shoes! There’s something so perfect about kids wearing house shoes. Gets me every time.

Mickey Mouse House Shoes

If you’ve updated your iPhone and are having issues with your photos, it may be because they’re being converted to the new High Efficiency format (.HEIC). This won’t work, for example, if you’re trying to upload photos to YOUR BLOG WHILE YOUR KID IS SLEEPING… eh hem… or if you’re working with non-Apple products. I’ve read there’s a fix in the works, but for now, just go to:

Settings – Camera – Formats – Most Compatible

.HEIC files on new iPhone update

I had to snag a picture of my friggin’ delicious lunch from PDQ (click here to see if there’s one near you). I had the Southern Buffalo Chicken Bowl and oohhhmyyyggeerrrrd. So delicious! I went through the drive-thru and got a yummy meal that had ACTUAL VEGETABLES! Plus, this whole bowl was just $8. I didn’t get a calorie count on this, but it was worth it no matter the count. I can’t wait to go back and try something else!

PDQ Southern Buffalo Bowl

Tuesday night was National Night Out for our area (never heard of this before, but it was awesome)! The neighborhood organized a fire truck, police car, bounce house, pizza, and a ton of vendors to come out for a night of fun. Corey was obsessed with the fire truck (and trying to scoot his butt into the pool). It’s so great – also so strange – to live in a place that organizes things like this! Definitely different than what I remember growing up, but I so love these kinds of things for Corey.

national night out

I have to end with this quote that’s stuck with me since waking up Monday morning to the news about the massacre in Las Vegas. I’m really having dark thoughts about bringing other kids into this world, but they are the HOPE of our world. I truly believe the only way to conquer hate is with love. Let’s stop pointing fingers, screaming instead of listening, and move towards a future we want for our kids.

f scott fitzgerald