Autumn has always been a time of reflection for me. Perhaps it stems from my birthday being in October or the way everything seems to slow down.

autumnleaves-1

More and more I am trying to work on being a better person, a better mother, a better girlfriend. I’ve spent the past year pretty much in bed due to pregnancy complications, then recovering from the emergency repeat c-section, and lately because there’s nothing better than laying with the baby and nursing him (I get rewarded with sleepy, milky smiles!).

tristan-at-park

I’ve also been trying to get more one-on-one time with Daniel, I realize it must have been so hard on him to see me go through a difficult pregnancy, labor, and the c-section recovery. We play a LOT of Uno, try to go to the park (the weather lately is very rainy and cold), watch movies together (with popcorn), etc.

danny1

I can’t wait until Spring, when the baby is a bit older, the weather is nicer, and I should be 100% healed physically from the c-section. I’m not used to being stuck at home all the time. I am trying my best to suck it up and get out more often, just to take photos again. I am hoping to eventually get a membership either to the Brookfield Zoo or the Chicago Botanic Gardens. I think Daniel would enjoy the zoo more though.

Autumn also brings out the fanatical cleaning, organizing, decorating side of me. I am hoping to have the bathroom and bedrooms painted by January if possible, any affordable paint brand suggestions? I’ve been hoarding links from Real Simple in hopes of gaining some fresh ideas on how to decorate. I really would love a room with green accents and a room with blue accents. I am also on the hunt on how to display photos WITHOUT the use of a frame. Do you have any free or super cheap decorating/renovating ideas?

autumnleaf1

I am also working on managing our food budget a bit better, I took a lot of the advice on the entry, Grocery Shopping/Meal Planning and here is the super long list of our planned meals in no particular order. I will do my best to blog the recipes!

  • Moist and Fluffy Pumpkin Pancakes with Bacon
  • Thanksgiving Dinner
  • Homemade Pizza
  • Hamburgers w/Sweet Potato Fries
  • Lasagna
  • Chili and Cornbread
  • Chicken and Dumplings
  • Avocado Corn Salad w/ Beef Enchiladas
  • Taco Salad
  • Southwestern Pasta
  • Quick Gumbo
  • Creamy Roasted Garlic Potato Soup
  • French Onion Soup and Salad
  • Meatloaf w/Mashed Potatoes
  • Slow-cooker Beef Stew w/Biscuits
  • Southwestern Salmon w/Avocado Corn Salad
  • Spaghetti and Meatballs
  • Pumpkin Tortilla Soup
  • Beef Stir-fry

autumnleaf2

Lastly, I am testing out a “footer” in my RSS feed, if you are reading this entry via that feed, I would appreciate your feedback if it is a welcome addition or too distracting. I also added a sidebar to the left of the entries and changed it to display three entries at a time. Let me know if these changes are positive or negative to you!

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Sarah
posted on November 24th 2009 at 4:04AM CST

I have for so long wanted to plan my meals. I sat down this morning with a notebook and pen and wrote down what I intend to eat for the next two weeks. This will no doubt help with my weight loss goal and the tedious weekly shop. :)

posted on November 24th 2009 at 4:09AM CST

It really helps since it eliminates eating out for lunch or dinner and makes you more aware financially of what to purchase at the grocery store.

Damita
posted on November 24th 2009 at 4:43AM CST

So yummy! Aw bless him he is getting so big!!

I love the colours of those leaves really reminders of autumn
.-= {Damita´s shared blog entry… Weekend} =-.

KJ McLean
posted on November 24th 2009 at 7:33AM CST

I love the pictures you’ve included, and am in a similar “nesting” mode right now. I haven’t quite gotten the urge to paint (probably because it’s too cold here to open the windows), but I, too, find myself preoccupied with domestic issues.

I wonder if there is something in evolution to account for it, or if we just want our homes to be nicer since we’re spending more time inside?

posted on November 24th 2009 at 10:23AM CST

Just wanted to tell you that I love the fourth photo — so striking! It seems to me that making prints of your photography would be a cheap way to change up your decor. I’d print a few big ones (you don’t have to frame them; just find interesting ways to hang them — maybe some really heavy wire twisted for visual appeal?), and then some smaller ones. Photojojo has these magnetic photo ropes, though I’m sure you can find them elsewhere as well: http://photojojo.com/store/awesomeness/magnetic-photo-rope

As for the footer, it’s kind of clunky. Maybe if it weren’t in bold? It just seems obtrusive as is.

posted on November 24th 2009 at 4:45PM CST

@Damita, thank you! Both boys have recently gone through a growth spurt, it’s amazing!

@KJ McLean, thank you so much! Oh it drives everyone nuts, I STILL keep the windows open, after having Tristan I am constantly feeling very warm. You bring up a great point, during the winter we are inside SO much, it’s dark out so early, so we try to brighten/freshen up our homes to make the winter more bearable!

@Tasha, aww thank you! I’ve printed some of my photos, 8×11, can’t afford frames though, that magnetic rope idea is very neat, maybe I can try to get that for a christmas gift! I fixed the RSS footer so it’s no longer bolded and added a line right above it to separate it from the actual feed content. It should change with my next blog post.

posted on November 24th 2009 at 5:24PM CST

Awesome post, mama! Your kids are gorgeous, as are your pictures in general. You have an eye for photography.

I have three boys, have had two c-sections, am a huge Real Simple fan, and try my best to meal plan/stick to a budget, too. There’s some common ground for you! LOL I find food the biggest challenge in our budget. We always seem to go over, no matter what I do!
.-= {The Maven´s shared blog entry… Deep Thoughts, by The Maven} =-.

posted on November 24th 2009 at 8:34PM CST

Thank you! I joke that I only breed adorable squishy tall boys lol. Oh yes, food is our downfall, part of the problem is that we can’t just eat ramen all the time, we really enjoy fresh whole foods when possible and it’s weird how THAT costs more than a bag of chips! So tonight is night 2 of working off of our meal plan.

posted on November 24th 2009 at 9:04PM CST

The photos are stunning. Especially that first one and the ones of the boys. I’m still amazed at how quickly Tristan has grown. Wow.

I see you’ve changed things up since I last visited. Looks nice. I was thinking of changing up Lisa’s Thoughts a little too. I’m just so bored during the day. It would be nice to have a little project or something to keep myself occupied.

What is that pumpkin tortilla soup all about? That sounds interesting.
.-= {Lisa Marie´s shared blog entry… My farm on FarmVille} =-.

posted on November 24th 2009 at 9:23PM CST

Aww thank you!! I know, this week he will be 2 months old! Where did the time go? I added the sidebar, added some share the post buttons, etc. Just needed a slight change and I can only do small changes at a time right now lol. I will post the recipe when I make it (for the tortilla soup).

posted on November 25th 2009 at 9:21AM CST

Hey Sarah, I just realized that I do have something else to add: Dried beans and lentils are a great (CHEAP!) way to add bulk to dinners, without relying on meat (which is what drives up my grocery bill). Things like lentil soup are awesome, and you can add beans to salads and such.

(As for the footer, it definitely looks better now that it’s not bold! Maybe a slightly smaller font would be good? Like, 2 points smaller?)
.-= {Tasha´s shared blog entry… Amsterdam Boats 8 x 10} =-.

posted on November 25th 2009 at 5:00PM CST

Normally we used canned, I have NO clue how to use dried beans! I will see about making the footer text a touch smaller, thank you!

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