Saturday, October 30, 2010

Maplewood, NJ Halloween Party

A beautiful fall Saturday in NJ

We headed to Natirar Park in NJ which is about 35 minutes away. The scenery was breathtaking and I was so taken aback by the beauty of nature. It was the perfect spot to take a stroll with the family and some photographs as well. It was such a happy little day - if I could have preserved it forever - I would have :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Pumpkin Farm!!!

On Monday when Erin was here, we headed to Alstede Farms in Chester, NJ. What a perfect fall day. The drive was about 45 minutes and the landscape was gorgeous with all of the beautiful fall leaves debuting their colors. Chester turned out to be this quaint little country town with the cutest Main Street. We headed to Alstede Farms where we got to feed the farm animals carrots and pick out pumpkins and apples. Addie was still a little too young to get too much out of it - but I think she understands "pumpkins" now since we have been talking about them a lot. When we got home we decorated Addie's pumpkin with a "Mrs. Potato Head" kit. She loves to go out everyday and see her very own pumpkin now :)

Erin in NYC

Erin was my next visitor. Again - BEAUTIFUL fall weather and the perfect night out and Sunday in NYC. We went to The Breslin - a restaurant in the Ace Hotel (which is my favorite place on earth now). We ate the most amazing food that nice - a true culinary experience with the best atmosphere!!! The next day we got coffee and headed to the Village where we ate brunch, walked around Washington Park, ate a cupcake at Magnolia's Bakery, and then had dinner at the Waverly Inn. It was not the usual sightseeing day and I loved it!!! Strolling along these cute brownstones with the stoops all decorated with fall put me in the best mood!

Molly and Anne in NYC

This is the month for visitors and I love it!!!! Molly and Anne were the first to visit me. We had a great time in NYC shopping and seeing the sights. It was the most beautiful fall weekend and the leaves were just starting to change color.

Homemade Bread

I really thought I would never buy a bread maker. The whole idea seemed very complicated and messy to be. I wondered why people made their own bread when you could just go to the store and buy a loaf for $2.99. It wasn't until our stay with friends in Scotland that I became enchanted with the whole idea of making my own bread. Our friends made fresh bread every morning and the smell was intoxicating. I saw how easy the whole process was: dump your ingredients in the pan and set the machine. It did EVERYTHING for you with literally no mess! So, of course, I headed straight to Macy's when we got home and BJ bought me a breadmaker for a steal of a price.
I know feel very "homemaker-ish" with my whole wheat bread made every 4 days or so. It is quite delicious and way cheaper than $2.99!!!! Maybe one of these days I will feel adventurous and make sunflower bread or pizza dough. For those of you who already have a bread maker at home - this is a delicious recipe.

Breadmaker Wheat Bread
1 1/3 cups warm water (about 110 degrees)
1/3 cup olive oil (do not substitute with vegetable oil--use olive oil!)
2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (if you wish to make white bread, substitute this for bread flour)
2 1/2 cups bread flour
'2 tbsp. and 2 tsp. white sugar
3 tsp. yeast (I used one of the packets)


In the breadmaker pan, combine water, oil, and salt.

Add the flour on top of the liquids. Pour sugar into one corner of the breadmaker pan. Make a well (a dent) in the center of the flour and pour the yeast into it.

Set the breadmaker for a "basic" loaf (and I used the "light" crust setting), and press start. Walk away... in three hours, you'll have delicious fresh bread!

Washington, D.C.

The first weekend in October we packed the car and headed to D.C. BJ had a conference to go to and we decided to tag along for the fun. We stayed at a gorgeous hotel and Addie and I had fun keeping busy while BJ was at meetings. One day BJ had off during the day, so we took Addie to the National Zoo. It was a nice experience - we just wanted to see more of the pandas!!!!

A Slide!

Addie got a slide in the backyard and this is her favorite thing to do now. She can climb the steps all by herself and usually likes one of us to hold her hand as she goes down. She has been afraid of the bigger slides at the park so I think this little slide is helping her to gain some confidence. This brings back so many memories of my childhood because I loved my slide, too!!!

First Ponytail!

I have no clue what to do with this little girl's hair. She looks like a ragamuffin most of the time because she refuses to keep ANYTHING in her hair that holds it away from her eyes. As a result, most of the time she has straggly little hairs in her eyes. I don't want to do the bang thing so I am letting it grow out and hopefully soon it can go behind her ears. Her hair in the back is getting quite long and can go in a little ponytail. I can only keep it in for a few minutes - but I do think she looks like such a big girl!!!!

Baby Swim Class

So Addie and I joined the YMCA and started taking some much needed classes. Addie started Baby Swim Class 1 and I started Prenatal Aquatics and Yoga. It has been working out quite nicely and Addie is slowing getting used to being in the big pool and splashing around. The 30 minutes consist of getting the babies used to getting their faces wet, putting them on their tummies and encouraging kicking, and reaching after toys in the water. Addie likes the songs that they sing and splashing in the water. I am not so sure that we have an Olympic swimmer on our hands - but I do think it is important that she learns how to swim and not be afraid of the water.

Some pictures from 15 Months

I am becoming quite delayed in posting pictures and I apologize. Between taking care of an active toddler and trying to find rest time in the day - I honestly don't always feel like tending to this blog site. However - since Addie's baby book only goes till one year - this is pretty much my way of documenting her life. So here are some of my favorites from 15 months.