Merry Christmas from our family to yours!
When you have a little blue truck, you have to take advantage and use it in photo shoots! We got an early snow this year and I just had to take advantage. This is a 1964 Ford F100 long box. It fills Ryan’s need for a manual truck and my need for a photography backdrop. We got a really great deal on it (it wasn’t currently running). Ryan fixed it up and got it back on the road. It has been a really fun project.
We always take our own Christmas photos with a DSLR (I have an older Canon Rebel) and tripod as soon as we get a good snow. It isn’t always easy to get the kids to look and smile, but this year they did awesome. I think as long as it is exciting they will take good pictures, but that gives you about a 5 minute window. Getting the dogs to look too was an extra challenge, but it only took 1 minute to get this photo. We would love to have some professional photography done, but it never seems to be in the budget around the holidays. These turned out great though, and I couldn’t be happier.
I dressed the truck up with a Christmas tree, some Christmas themed pillows, and a little bit of plaid (that is actually a SmartBottoms nursing scarf). The kids were in a great mood and happy to be playing in the truck.
Ryan and I were able to get a couple of photos together too, something we haven’t done in a very long time. We need more photos displayed in our house and I think these might just have to be some of them.
Are you a Christmas photo family? Do you send out cards or e-cards? We send out some photo cards, but I love to share here too. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more Christmas fun!
Kids are funny. Sometimes when they are in trouble or being rude they come up with the most hilarious things. No one prepared me for the straight faced, trying not to laugh, moments that come along with kids. Whatever you do, don’t make eye contact with your spouse, or you will both lose it.
Micah spends all day mispronouncing “Truck”, “Fork”, and “Frog” (they all sound the same, and very inappropriate) and he pronounces bulldozer as “Booty”.
Harrison and Micah were going back and forth today.
Harrison: You can’t say f**k. It’s truck.
And on and on. Try not to laugh at your kids during that one!
Harrison has a sense of humor and he doesn’t even really know it. He’s a silly kid. First of all, the poor boy thinks Disney = School because that is the only time he has been on a bus. We’ve explained it to him several times, but he still doesn’t quite get it. He’s a pretty smart kid, so I think he is just in denial.
Harrison: I’m so excited to start going to school to see the storm troopers!
Mom: You mean Disney?
Harrison: Yeah, school. Where the buses are.
Harrison: Remember the time we went to school and there were palm trees?
Mom: Harrison, that was Disney. School will be much different.
Harrison: Can I ride an airplane to get to school?
Mom: Did you see Santa?
Harrison: Yeah. I told him I what I wanted, but he just gave me this monster truck and escaped me, again!
Harrison has struggled with sleep lately and always ends up in our bed. We bring him right back upstairs, but he had a different idea.
Harrison: I could sleep better in my room if it was green and had a train.
Mom: *Paints room and builds train book shelves that same day*
Harrison: I can’t sleep in my room.
Mom: Why not?
Harrison: It’s too different.
And last night, getting ready for bed:
Dad: Tell mama “It’s been real.”
Harrison: (Grumpy) Mama, it’s been pretend. *Leaves room*
Ok, to be fair, it is half way through November. Ryan has been traveling for work and the upcoming holidays are making things CrAzY around here. I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to share the highlights of October though, so here it is. Better late than never!
We are lucky to live in a place where people travel to see the beautiful fall colors. This year was a little bit strange, as the colors didn’t change like they normally would. The warm autumn temperatures caused the color changes to be delayed and then a cold snap changed them all at once. While it was difficult for visitors and tourists to time it right to see, we are fortunate that it is just outside our door and we can enjoy it whenever it happens!
We finished harvesting the garden, which included several pumpkins. Harrison planted these as seeds in April (indoors) and was so excited to watch them grow and eventually cut the vine to free his pumpkins. We will definitely try again next year, because these were really fun to watch and grow.
Around here, fall = cranberries. We have a big celebration called Cranberry Fest and it is a fall tradition. The festival includes Cranberry foods, drinks, cranberry bog tours, and craft vendors. This year it rained (a lot!) on Saturday, so we enjoyed the festival on Sunday after it dried out a bit. I took this picture of Harrison and I just can’t believe he looks so grown up. I know every parent feels this way, but sometimes it just hits you.
We celebrated my brother and his soon-to-be wife at a bridal shower this month too! I made these end tables from Ana White’s free plans, and you should definitely take a look. They were a labor of love, but you can make them too with just a few tools and a bit of time.
Ryan was able to fix the in floor heat for the rooms above the garage this fall. That meant we gained about 500 square feet of space! We added a bedroom for Micah and a woodland themed playroom for the boys. It was worth every bit of hard work, because the kids use it every day, it has moved the mess out of the living room, and it is the best looking room in the house. I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out and how much the kids use it.
We finished out the month with Halloween. Complete with carving pumpkins, trick or treating, and some fall crafts, we really enjoyed Halloween this year. Micah’s costume was bought from Target, with a last minute hat addition because it was only 36 degrees F! I made Harrison’s spider costume with a black shirt, Ryan’s socks, and fishing line! He also got a last minute hat. We went to a local church for Trunk or Treat, which was nice considering the weather was so cold.
I hope you had a great October too! Remember to follow along on Instagram, including the story feature. I post a little every day about our adventures and would love to share with you too! We have a lot of projects in the works, so I hope you will stay tuned. Thanks for reading!
Anybody else have kids acting a little demonic lately? No, just Micah? Hmmm, ok…
Anyways, we carved pumpkins tonight and it was an adventure for all of us. Micah was just so excited someone gave him a marker to draw on his pumpkin and Harrison was completely grossed out that we wanted him to scoop out the seeds. Eventually, I managed to clean out and carve both pumpkins without too much of a mess, and some help from my wonderful husband. Carving pumpkins is such a classic family event, and I’m happy the kids were excited about it.
Of course, Micah wore his Halloween costume to match his pumpkin. I always free hand carvings, we don’t do fancy stuff around here. Micah wanted a bat, and he had bat wings to match. (Target had this shirt with removable bat wings for under $8!) Having an 18 month old is a handful. I don’t remember Harrison being quite this adventurous. Micah is a sweet but energetic kid. He is almost always smiling and having fun.
Harrison drew his pumpkin face all by himself and I cut it out for him. He thinks it is the greatest thing ever. Of course, he won’t touch it, because it’s yucky. Maybe next year?
Overall, tonight was another classic, fun adventure. We put the pumpkins on the porch with candles, but before long they will be chicken food. We have some other fun Halloween plans coming up that we are all excited for. It has been a fun, but short fall. We have already seen our first snowflakes and should have some snow on the ground tonight. Bring on November and all of the fun winter weather!
Time is just flying by! We are nearly half way into October already, but I wanted to share the highlights of September 2017. If you don’t already follow Scott Family Homestead on Facebook and Instagram, you are missing out! The Instagram stories feature is my favorite place to post day to day happenings. You can check it out at Instagram.com/scottfamilyhomestead.
September was an amazing month for our garden. We harvested over 20 lbs of tomatoes, 2 dozen cucumbers, and many carrots, zucchini, and green beans. We also collected about 15 cups of blackberries, which made 8 delicious jars of jam. This year was my first “real” garden, and I am so proud of our harvests.
Ryan was successful in getting the Little Blue Truck running with minor repairs and breaks. It is now road ready, with insurance and registration. We received our “Collectors” licence plates and are ready to go. Ryan likes to use it to run errands and I hope to learn how to drive it soon. I’ve never driven a manual, so I’m a little bit nervous.
We traveled quite a bit in September. We started the month out with a camping trip and visit to the Twin Cities for the Minnesota Renaissance Art Festival. We had a good time at the festival and we able to visit family too. It turned out to be a great trip. The boys shared a lemonade at one of the food stands and it is a favorite picture of mine.
We also spent several days during the week at a waterpark resort in Wisconsin Dells. The kids are at a great age to enjoy the water as well as the playgrounds and arcades. For more details of the trip, I wrote a detailed post. We had a blast, and most of it was chronicled on Instagram stories, including a trip to a lumberjack breakfast and Harrison’s first mini golfing adventure.
We ended the month with a beautiful wedding in the Madison, WI area. My cousin and his beautiful wife were married in a small little chapel on a gorgeous day. The boys loved dancing the night away and meeting some of their cousins for the first time. We stayed in our camper at Governor Dodge State Park, which was so convenient and fun.
September ended with beautiful but warm fall weather. We captured some great pictures of the boys in the same place as last year. You can read the details and see more pictures on the blog. I put together a collage of 2016 and 2017 to show the difference in these handsome boys. They have changed so much and have really developed their personalities.
September 2017 was quite an adventure and we have enjoyed settling in for the first bit of October. We like to be busy, but time as a family is what we love the most. Stay tuned for more updates, as I have been trying to make a better effort to keep everyone updated on our adventures!
5 years ago when I started to blog, it was just Ryan and I. We purchased a fixer upper and wanted to share the projects we were working on. Now, we have 2 little helpers that seem to want to be involved with everything. At first, I was resistant to letting the kids get involved in my projects. It took me a long time to decide that I could keep doing what I love with littles under foot. Having kids takes patience I never knew I could have. Letting them help with things I want or need to get done takes even more patience. When it really comes down to it, I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Let’s be honest. Little hands aren’t always that helpful. They are more likely to spill paint than to get the job done quicker. They are more likely to crawl on your new table than to help assemble it. They are more likely to eat the vegetables right from the garden before you can get them inside. They are more likely to drop the fresh eggs than to crack them neatly into a bowl. Sometimes, it really is just a mess.
It’s important to remember though, for every bit of spilled paint, Harrison has seen how his mom can paint neatly and clean up a mess. Even if he isn’t as careful as I would like, he is more likely to be careful next time. He knows how to make a mess and he knows how to clean one. If my boys help with a project, they have to follow through with the clean up. Sometimes it is easier to give them their own project or a pretend one, but they still get the experience.
This week, not only do they have a table sturdy enough to climb on (against my wishes), the boys watched their Momma build one from scratch. They know that anyone can build something if they put their mind to it, and women are no exception. Watching their mom and dad work hard is just their “normal”.
As far as eating from the garden, well, my boys like vegetables. I credit a lot of that to the fact that they grew them from tiny little seeds and watched them grow every step of the way. I may never see a full sized carrot at the rate the boys pull them out of the garden, but they will both tell you that is their favorite food.
Harrison cracked his first egg when he was just under 2. When I would cook he wanted to be involved. I bought him a cute little apron and we started to keep an extra chair in the kitchen for him to stand on. I always crack eggs into a bowl before adding them to the recipe just in case of egg shells. Harrison gets his own egg and bowl. Now at just 3 years old, he can crack an egg into the bowl perfectly and he is so proud. If the kids prefer to play with their toys nearby while I cook, that is alright with me. I don’t want to force my hobbies on them, but while they are interested I will teach them everything I can.
These are just a few examples, but let them spill the paint, check out your work, eat the food they grow, and help you cook. It isn’t always convenient, and it isn’t always fun, but their little minds always learn something. I won’t lie, they almost always make the job more difficult. I like to give the boys an easy job, like using a sanding square on furniture I am planning to paint. When I am cooking, the boys are great at stirring, or I measure the ingredients and they pour it in the bowl. The job doesn’t have to be big, they love it all the same. I am easily overwhelmed and stressed, but letting Harrison and Micah help with things has gotten easier over time and my patience has grown. Obviously, there are some things that kids need to stay away from. The boys aren’t allowed anywhere near a saw or the hot oven. They know that, and Harrison will tell you exactly how excited he is to grow up and use a chainsaw. Not today little man, not today. (It is important to make time for hobbies that aren’t kid friendly too, but that is a topic for a different day.)
As a stay at home parent, it is especially important for me to let the kids help me. Without my little helpers, I would never get anything done. For a while, I stopped building and crafting. Now, it does take longer when the kids get involved, but I still get to do the things I love while teaching them what hard work looks like. I really do believe our boys have found appreciation in what we do and how much work it takes. They also take pride in the things they have worked on. If appreciation, hard work, and pride come at the price of slowing down what I am working on, I think it is worth it. So, get back to doing what you love or start something new together. Now is as good a time as any!
This year Harrison has started preschool at home. We don’t have a 3 year old program here, but Harrison is so excited to start school (mostly because he thinks the school bus will take him to Disney World, but that’s a whole different issue). We have been working from a workbook, reading, and doing a little bit of crafting. Today we decided to go on a search outside for some colorful leaves to make fall wreaths. These are such an easy project anyone can do it, and Micah helped too!
We collected leaves of all different colors, shapes and sizes. This is the perfect time of year to collect, because the leaves are about 50% changed at this point. If you don’t have colorful leaves in your area or it is past that time of year, you can buy colorful leaves at your local craft store.
*If you want your wreath to last for quite some time, you should press your leaves to dry for several days once they are collected.*
Once the leaves were collected, we headed back inside. The best part – this craft only takes 2 other materials, a paper plate and some glue. We cut the center out of the plate to make a ring and started to glue down the leaves.
That’s all there is to it! Put as many or as few leaves on the ring as you would like, set it out to dry, and find a place to display your work! Harrison is just 3 and was able to do this project completely on his own. Micah, who is 18 months, needed a little help. He liked collecting leaves and placing them on the plate, but I helped him finish it off.
What kinds of crafts have you been up to this fall? I look forward to seeing them!
Last year I took some fall photos in our driveway and they are some of my favorite pictures. I couldn’t pass up a chance to make it a yearly thing and put the boys back in matching plaid outfits.
The leaves are changing colors and falling fast. Ryan picked up some pumpkins and mums from the store yesterday and they are beautiful! The kids were very excited to take pictures with the pumpkins. I’m not going to lie, taking the boy’s pictures isn’t always a treat. They like to wiggle and crawl away, but this time they made it easy.
Keep in mind I am far from a professional photographer or blogger, but I need to capture these memories. It’s true, the days are long, but the years are short. My boys are growing fast and I feel like I’ve just blinked.
Make sure you check out last years pictures too. It is amazing to see the difference a year makes. Harrison is losing his baby look and is becoming a little boy (big boy if you ask him). Our little 6 month old, dark haired Micah has turned blonde and is almost as tall as his big brother. Make it stop!
Fall is a really great season around here. I’m harvesting what is left of the garden. Last night we canned 12 pints of pickles and I baked 24 zucchini muffins. It even smells like fall in here now! I hope you are able to get out and enjoy the fall weather. Pull out your sweaters and jackets, the best season of the year is here!
We have been in desperate need of a family vacation. Ryan has been busy with work and keeping everything running around here, while I have been in over my head with the kids, garden, and chickens. It is that time of year when everything needs to be cleaned, organized, and put away before snow flies. We had a great chance to step away for a few days and really enjoy the kids. They are at an awesome age and we don’t want to miss anything because we are too busy.
*This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.*
We had a list of things we wanted to do while on our vacation. The Wisconsin Dells are full of fun things to do, but we definitely wanted to go to the waterparks, mini golfing, shopping, ride a Duck, and eat good food. I’d say it was a successful trip, although we did have to skip one item on our list.
We took a trip to Wisconsin Dells. This is a great time of year to go (September), because even though the outdoor waterparks are closed up, the crowds are low and the rates are cheap. We got a suite at the Wilderness Resort for a great price, and the 3rd night was half off! The Wilderness Resort has everything you could want including several indoor waterparks, mini golf, arcade, ropes course, playhouse, restaurants and bars, shops, spa, and more. Between it being during the week and in the off season, the place was practically our own. We have stayed at other resorts (Kalahari, Chula Vista, etc) but the Wilderness is by far our favorite.
Harrison loved the multi-level playhouse. Micah loved it too, and it is big enough for parents to supervise (and have a little fun too). I’m sure it gets a little crazy in the busy season, but it has a lot of space for the kids to run and play. The boys also liked the arcade. Harrison figured out how to swipe his card to activate the games all by himself. He ran around playing games and winning tickets for cheap prizes we don’t really need…but he loved it!
The lazy river in the waterpark is my favorite part. They have double tubes with a mesh bottom in the front. Micah and I spent a ridiculous amount of time floating circles around the park. He was terrified of the dumping bucket, and the river kept him far away. Harrison was busy riding the big slides with Daddy. They did all of the adventurous stuff while Micah and I took it easy.
We also enjoyed a few other things around town. We enjoyed breakfast at Paul Bunyans. They have an all you can eat, lumberjack themed breakfast. The kids got Babe the Blue Ox hats and ate until their little tummies were all filled up! We have also loved going to Moosejaw Brewing Co. in the past. They have great pizza and homemade beer and soda. I highly recommend it!
We also couldn’t visit the Dells without a trip to Pirates Cove Mini Golf. Harrison hasn’t ever golfed before. It took a few practices before he had it all figured out. We had a blast and Micah fell asleep in the Tula carrier. We couldn’t have asked for better weather. It was a beautiful, warm day.
Of course, no trip is complete without a little shopping. The Dells have an amazing outlet mall and we scored some great deals, including a few fall outfits for the boys from Carters and Gymboree. Since becoming a mom, I find it much more enjoyable to shop for the kids than to shop for myself.
One of these times, we hope to take a Dells Tour with the Original Ducks. They have vehicles that are both trucks and boats that take a tour of the beautiful parts of the Wisconsin Dells. We planned on going (because they have a fall discount) but the boys fell asleep after lunch and we decided to just get on the road while we had quiet kids in the back seat. Next time!
It was good to get away for a bit. We only have one more camping trip planned and then the camper and boat will be put away. The leaves are already changing color and dropping leaves, and the yard needs to be mowed at least one more time. The coops are in good shape, but we will be adding windows to encourage more light for egg laying during the winter. The garden has handfuls of cucumbers and tomatoes that need to be processed. The list goes on and on, but we sure do love this life.
Another month has flown by, and we have more photos to share! August was a busy month for us on the homestead, but also very rewarding. The weather has been great and we have been able to get quite a bit from the garden while also enjoying the camper and boat. We started the month by harvesting a big batch of green beans.
We were also able to spend a few days camping. With Ryan’s work we are even able to camp during the week sometimes, so we took advantage of that. You can’t have fun without a little bit of work though, and both cars and the camper have required a bit of work this summer (not even counting the F100 truck work Ryan has been doing).
August 14th is our wedding anniversary and this year we celebrated 7 years! We spent the weekend out on the lake and finished the day off with pizza and ice cream on the boat. The kids had a great time and spending the day as a family was the perfect celebration.
The boys are becoming more independent and Micah weaned this month. It is a bit easier for me to leave them home for little while. Ryan always does great with the boys, but going out is a little more guilt free now that Micah doesn’t need me all day long. I spent a nice long time on a Hobby Lobby shopping trip. I got all kinds of goodies to help decorate the house and make it feel a little more “grown up” along side the toys and sippy cups.
It has been a beautiful month around here. I’m excited for September though, it is one of my favorite months. While the weather gets cooler, the tourism slows down and our town begins to feel a little bit more like home. Fall is coming but we still have plenty of nice summer days to enjoy, and I hope you get a chance to enjoy too!