Happy Saturday! It’s been a while since I’ve had a free flow chatty post, and you know what, I kind of miss them. When I started blogging, long before Love From The Oven, back in the days of Xanga (anyone remember that?), I used my blog as a journal, sharing stories, thoughts, feelings and any random things that popped into my head. I still did that, to a lesser extent, when I started Love From The Oven. Somehow over the last year or two, I’ve gotten away from that. I’m not entirely sure why. I think with Pinterest it’s easy for food bloggers to sometimes feel like we are just recipe boxes for people to pull from, that it’s just “get to the recipe already”, and there is nothing wrong with that at all.
But truth be told, I miss the more personal side of blogging. I miss the connection it can bring. It’s something I’ve been thinking about a lot (my fellow insomniacs will understand the late night musings about anything and everything) and have decided that I want to bring a bit more of “me” back to my blog. So here we are, with a chatty, free flow, Saturday Stuff. So let’s chat.
My oldest daughter and I spent the last week in New York City. I had an appearance on The Better Show (which I think airs this week) to share a few easy recipes from my book, Smart Cookie, and I also had a book signing at an adorable candy shop called The Sweet Shop. To be honest, appearances and what not give me anxiety, I’m a behind the scenes kind of gal, and any attention on me makes me feel all awkward and crazy. But they both went well, and I am so thankful that I was able to bring my oldest daughter along. She was an only child for seven years, and she’s a rock star of a big sister, but I know she misses one on one time with mom and dad, so these opportunities are priceless.
We did the whole tourist thing, Times Square, Central Park, Chelsea Market, Rockefeller Center, The High Line (so cool), Dylan’s Candy Bar, Ellen’s Stardust Diner, FAO Schwartz, Eleni’s Nut Free Bakery, and just lots of walking and exploring. We saw Matilda, which was my daughter’s first time seeing a Broadway show. It was AMAZING. It rained non-stop the last two days we were there, and while it was a nice light rain, navigating giant crowds with umbrellas, um that’s a bit of a challenge. We also got to see two of my favorite bloggers, Jennifer from Bake or Break and Hayley from The Domestic Rebel. It was a fantastic trip. I’m so thankful to make memories like these with my daughter, and look forward to doing the same things with my youngest daughter when she’s older.
I can’t believe we have less than a week until Halloween, and that Thanksgiving and Christmas and the end of the year are all knocking at the door. Where does the time go? I’m almost certain yesterday was March. Go figure. I love Halloween, I always have. In part because it’s a fun, costumes, candy, all that good stuff, and in part because it’s like a sign that we’ve made it through another six month long summer here in Phoenix, and fall/winter (they are kind of one in the same in Phoenix) is here. We have Trunk or Treat this weekend, which is always a favorite. It’s one of my favorite holidays to bake and decorate for. I have lots of Halloween recipes for you, and many are quick and no-bake, my favorite for those busy days when it’s hard to find the time to get it all done.
And I get a little teary eyed each year seeing my kids grow up.
Last year our little one was still unable to say “Trick or Treat”, or anything even close really. We even worked her “talker” (and augmentative communication device where she would push buttons to say words) into her costume last year as a “boom box”, so she could “say” trick or treat to people. Our 3-4 days of therapy a week the past three years is finally starting to really pay off, and she’s had a huge explosion of speech and language. She can say “trick or treat” and “thank you” and so much more this year. At almost five, she’s still way, way behind in her speech, but she’s getting there, and that is REALLY amazing, and something we weren’t sure would ever happen. It’s so exciting, except now we need to undo a bit of the “language is power” thing, because little miss is quite the boss around here!
I’m currently working on a fun project with the folks at Ebay, where I’m sharing some of my favorite things and writing some guides about things that I love. There are a few other bloggers you probably recognize over there as well. The guides are a lot like blog posts here, they just refer to them as guides. I’ve put one together about throwing a fun (and easy, always a requirement for me!) Halloween party, making cake pops, how to make chocolate covered pretzels and how to set up a hot cocoa bar, which I adore for winter parties or even just when friends, family or neighbors drop by. Click on any of the images to check them out!
I recently had some new headshots done for the blog and work. A lot of the brands I work with require bios and headshots, and the photo I’ve always used, one of my absolute favorite photos with my girls, is about three years old. In one week, I had two brands request that I send them new headshots, so it was time.
Much like the tv and book signing things, I just don’t love being in front of the camera. At all. But it’s nice to have some new pics for the blog, which hopefully will get a little update sometime soon. Here are some of the fun candy filled photos. I found both of the dresses that I wore on clearance at Dillards early in the summer. I believe they were $12 a piece. Paired with clearance cardigans (under $20 for sure) and what I call the “cliche blogger bubble necklace” (super cheap, like $10 on Ebay, Etsy, Amazon or Zulily) and those were some inexpensive outfits. 🙂 I’m such a bargain shopper.
So now it’s time to get ready for Trunk Or Treat, a local tv appearance on Tuesday, Halloween, parent teacher conferences, and November showing up all too soon. Time to get cracking! Have a great weekend!