Our Maple Tree

Keeping up with The Maples

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Mama + Mini Monday: Cobalt Blue

Happy Cyber Monday ya’ll! I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving filled with family, friends, turkey, and pie! We had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend with family, but it is always nice to come back home. Now we can decorate the house for Christmas and take advantage of all the Cyber Monday savings to finish up our Christmas shopping!

Today, we are wearing another favorite color of mine – cobalt blue. I think this color is great for the holidays and winter time.

I have been hunting for a cobalt blue shirt like this for about a year now and was so excited to find it at TJMaxx about a month ago. You can find this blouse here. I also like wearing this shirt with my J.Crew herringbone vest. It is so easy to dress this shirt up or down and this style looks so good on everyone.

My jeans are from Loft. Loft’s jeans fit me the best. Pretty much all my jeans come from there. 🙂 My shoes are another TJMaxx find. I love t-strap shoes! I love the vintage look and I feel like they slenderize my ankles and feet. They are Franco Sartos and even though they do not look comfy, they really are comfortable. I can wear them for hours without them hurting my feet (similar). YAY!

I was so excited to find Ada’s sweater at OldNavy the other day. I snagged it during the Black Friday sale this past weekend and I am considering getting the other colors. The sweater is soft and the tunic fit is so cute on a little one. It even has dolman style sleeves! How cute! Her leggings are from Gap and her gold Mary Janes are from Amazon. Her metallic gold bow is from SmallPeanutsShop.

She looks so cute standing up! She is getting better and better at standing. She still can’t quite pull herself up into standing position, but she can stand up against a table unassisted. I do worry about her not standing or walking yet. I know she will in her own time, but it still worries me. What if she doesn’t really walk till she is two? Has anyone else heard of or seen a little one take so long to walk?

Ada has shown a big interest in shoes right now; that’s my girl! She loves putting them on and taking them off. She even likes to go into my closet and play with my shoes. She usually comes back with one or two for me to put on for her. She is definitely my daughter! 😉 So there will probably be a pair or two under the tree for her this year.

There are some great sales going on today: Old Navy & Gap are having 50%; Loft is having 50% off + free shipping; Anthro is having 20% off + extra 30% off sale items. Amazon is having some good deals today – one being the FitBit Charge 2 and a Kitchen Aid Mixer. And don’t forget J.Crew – 40% + free shipping!

Have fun shopping today!

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Farewell 2015 – Our Year in Pictures

Happy New Year’s Eve! 2015 has been an amazing year! It has been so much fun looking back on all our memories and seeing how much our lives have changed; for the better, of course!

valentines 1

13 weeks











Project Nursery 01


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birth annoucement

Week Three 33

Week Five 27

This has certainly been the best, most exciting year of our lives, so far! I look forward to another year of adventures with Randy and now with our sweet little girl!

I wish you the happiest New Year! Cheers!

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Ada’s First Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is over and our house is empty. 🙁 This year’s Thanksgiving was extra special because it was Ada’s first and we had some dear friends to visit and meet Ada for the first time! We had the best time with our friends and family. I wish they could stay with us forever!





We brined our turkey in maple syrup and sea salt, then cook it in a dutch oven outside using hot coals. The most perfect job for the boys, while the girls take over the kitchen. We have cooked the turkey this way for two years in a row now and it makes the best, most moist turkey.

After dinner we took naps and family photos. And we of course had dessert – pumpkin pie, whipped cream and ginger cookies.

It was awesome to get some photos of our sweet little family too!

It was a wonderful Thanksgiving, especially for Ada’s first! Another holiday come and gone… I can’t wait for Ada’s first Christmas! Happy December First!

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Truly Grateful

This Thanksgiving was quite different than planned. I don’t have photos to share of our beautiful family or of our amazing Thanksgiving dinner or of the beautiful decor that only Thanksgiving can provide. This Thanksgiving was spent in a waiting room at a hospital. Randy’s grandmother was in a house fire last week and was sent to an ICU burn center. She is OK and it seems like she is going to pull through. She is definitely a fighter and her strength is an encouragement for us all. It is a tragedy that she lost her home to the fire, but she is alive and that is all that really matters.

Spending Thanksgiving in a hospital really got me thinking. I don’t ever recall spending any holiday in a hospital. All of my holidays have been spent at the comfort of my home surrounded by my family. Thinking about this made me realized how truly blessed I am. Every Thanksgiving I take time to reflect on my blessings and I am aware how blessed I am. I am thankful for everything that the Lord has blessed me with.

But after this Thanksgiving it had me thinking about all the families around the world who spend their holidays in a hospital. Those who have had an accident within the family or for those who spend every holiday and celebration in the hospital. My heart goes out to the families who spend their holidays in a hospital. I can’t imagine how difficult it is to spend year after year in a hospital. The Lord has certainly blessed me and my family with good health.

Spending days in a waiting room, we joked around how this Thanksgiving was not going to be blog worthy. But why not? I don’t have fun ideas or recipes to share or even pictures of my day. But what I do have, are memories of spending real quality time with my family. And at the end of it all, isn’t that what Thanksgiving is all about? Being with your family? Reflecting on what you have and not what you don’t have?

I wish Randy’s grandmother was not in a fire and that she didn’t lose her home. But she is alive, thank the Lord. And we have each other. That is what really matters. Having each other and being there for each other through the good times and through the bad.

I hope your Thanksgiving was wonderful! No matter where it was spent, I hope it was spent with the ones that you love.

Count your Blessings 2-01


Thanksgiving Part 1

I am going to take a little break from Italy, mostly because we have not converted our Rome pictures yet! We are working on it though!

We started celebrating Thanksgiving the weekend before – Randy’s dad and girlfriend came up to visit us. We had initially planned to go camping, but a cold front came in, bringing 12 degrees wind chill! No thanks!

So instead, we hung out at our house and enjoyed our fire pit. Randy’s dad brought a turkey breast to be cooked in a dutch oven by the fire coals. It was our first time trying anything like this before.


Cooking the turkey this way was a lot of fun. We placed the turkey in the pot, filled it with chicken broth and all kinds of goodies – seasonings, potatoes, onions, celery and an apple. Then we placed hot coals from the fire on the bottom and the top of the dutch oven.


Then we just waited.





Tesla joined us too, away from the fire. She gets too hot around it.


After about 3 hours of cooking, we finally opened the dutch oven and this is what we found:


A beautiful turkey, that smelled amazing! Randy’s dad was so excited on how well it went. He has been wanting to try this for a long time.


I made some sides to have with the turkey. Made-from-scratch green bean casserole, roasted garlic mashed potatoes and anasazi beans.


Everything was delicious! It was a lot more entertaining cooking the turkey this way. I would love to do it again for Thanksgiving! We planned on s’mores for dessert, but by the time we finished dinner, the wind picked up. We could hear tree branches breaking off and trees hitting the ground. So we stayed inside and enjoyed our Thanksgiving inspired fireplace. 😉


I made the “GIVE” banner with my cricut machine, the “M” book came from Altar’d State, the “THANKS” pumpkins came from Wal-mart (I drew the letters on with a sharpie) and the maple leaf garland came from yellowbirdyellowbeard.com.


We had a wonderful weekend with Randy’s family and enjoyed being outdoors for a least a little bit!

Randy and I are so very blessed and have so much to be thankful for. We know all that we have has been given to us by God and I thank Him everyday!

Psalm 9:1

I will give thanks to the LORD with my whole heart;
I will recount all of Your wonderful deeds.