What’s Up Wednesday.

In my efforts to get back into regular blogging, I’ve decided to do a What’s Up Wednesday post today!  So I’m going to be answering these questions:


  1. What we’re eating this week. This past weekend, my parents were in town to go with us to the corn maze/fall fun place — so I got to make my favorite things: Vegetable Beef Soup (crock pot for the win!), a cheese ball to snack on, our family recipe cheese straws, and an easy box cake mix that I added pumpkin to.  FALL FOODS!!  This week, one of the things we’re having is Tom’s favorite meal: Chicken Enchiladas.  Y’all, he eats these up, and then eats the leftovers for breakfast. Seriously!  It’s a great meal to make ahead of time for families who need a meal, too (new baby, etc.) Here’s the link!


2. What I’m reminiscing about. Past Halloweens!  I cannot believe it’s next week!  Just yesterday I put up all of their old Halloween photos to display in the living room — oh my gosh, we talked/laughed so much about the Halloween we were all deathly ill.  Alice doesn’t even remember it!  So totally crazy.  We’re big Halloween fans around here, so talked about our past costumes has been a favorite!  And both my cute babies in their first costumes — homemade owl costumes! I mean…AWWWW!


3. What I’m loving… FALL!  It’s no secret that fall is my absolute favorite season, and it’s finally cool here!  Yay!  You guys, the first time it was even slightly cold in the morning, I totally lit the fireplace.  I’ve never had one before!  I love this weather. Being outdoors is my favorite, and there is nothing better than hiking and fires during this season! LOVE it!


4. What we’ve been up to. This past weekend we went to Washington Farms with my family. One of the best things about living in Athens now, is that my parents can come up and easily see both me and my sister and our kids at the same time! It’s the best.  We’ve come up to Washington Farms the past two years, but now it’s only 15 minutes down the road, and that is so nice!  AND, we ran into so many friends there this time, and we ran into my brother-in-law and his family, too!  It went a long way to making me feel more like we actually live here, as opposed to feeling like permanent visitors. It was honestly, the perfect day. So happy this tradition continues! (Totally got lost in the corn maze, by the way. So…that tradition continues as well. Is there a medical name for a person who absolutely cannot get out of a corn maze without massive amounts of help? If so, I’ve got it.)


5. What I’m dreading. I’m dreading the fact there are no school breaks until Thanksgiving week! In our previous county, we had a week off for fall break in September, and here we don’t.  So it’s felt like we’ve been in school FOR-EV-ER.  I know, I’m spoiled, but man, I cannot wait to have a break. And I’m not even the one going! I’m over all of it right now — too many phone calls, too many projects, too many things I have to send money in for, too many papers to sign — it’s all just feeling so “too” right now.

6. What I’m working on. I’m working on a new article that’s due next week for 365 Atlanta Family.  The opportunity to write for this website, has been such a major thing for me.  To be able to find something that allows me to follow my two passions: writing, and outdoor experiences with my family — is just a super big deal to me, and has affected me in ways I couldn’t have imagined.  It’s honestly a dream come true, and I feel really grateful to have it. I’ll post the link here for my new article once it goes live, but in the meantime, here are my two latest: 41 Creative Car Camping Tips for Adventurous Families / 27 Clever Camping Games to Dazzle and Delight the Family

7. What I’m excited about. Next weekend, we’re going on a cabin trip! Cabin trips are so, so fun, and I’m super excited. We’ll be staying at a state park in Tennessee, and we’ll be hiking around the same places we hiked when I got sent up there to write an article earlier this year.  This time, Rachel and her kids are going too, so I know the kids will have an absolute blast. And I’m so excited to see how it looks up there in the fall! Can’t wait!


8. What I’m watching/reading. I’m supposed to be reading Crazy Rich Asians, but I’m having a hard time getting into it. It came highly recommended, so I’m assuming I’m just not in the right mindset or something. The dorky thing about me, is that I pick books that I just kind of…race through. It is not weird for me to finish a book the same day I started it. So this one is just not like that for me…YET.  I’m hoping it becomes that, though. And right now I’m watching Grace and Frankie before bed. My mom got me hooked on it when she came to visit a few months ago, and now I can’t stop. I’m totally binge watching them. I think I need to slow down, though, because yesterday I started getting really irritated with Frankie, and I usually love her.  Also, I think it’s weird that I love the actor Ethan Embry so much. No one ever even talks about him, but he was in Empire Records and Can’t Hardly Wait (FAVS!), and now he’s in this, and I just love him in everything. And y’all, we’re practically married because he follows me on Twitter. So there.

9. What I’m listening to. My BFF introduced me to Amazon Music, and I love it! Right now, when the kids are in the car, we’re listening to a kids mix of Halloween songs.  Alice found the mix, and it’s my very favorite.  Smart kid, that Alice.  When I’m in the car without kids, I’m listening to either the Brave Writer podcast (a homeschooling one), or the Young House Love podcast (home DIY). Both speak to me and where I am in life right now!  New house, new information to be learned!  And when I’m home doing work (and right this second) I am listening to…CHRISTMAS MUSIC. I know. I’m embarrassed. It’s a classical Christmas station on Amazon, and I just…love it.  When Kevin comes in from his office, I try to turn it off before he hears it, but a couple of days ago he caught me.

Him: “Is this…CHRISTMAS MUSIC?!”

Me (hiding my face in my hands): “Yes. But you can’t judge me! I need it to get all of this work done!”

Apparently if my argument is to be believed, instrumental Christmas music helps me mop, and fold laundry. You should try it.

10. What I’m wearing. I’m wearing workout pants, a fleece pullover, and fuzzy socks. Super fashionable, AS ALWAYS. Actually, I am pretty excited about being able to wear my two favorite clothing items now that the weather is cooler: puffy vests and scarves. That is the Kate uniform. Give me all the puffy vests and scarves! In the fall, it’s pretty hard to find a picture of me not wearing one of those. Or both.

11. What I’m doing this weekend. We’re going to a little Halloween party at the kids’ martial arts studio on Friday, we’re planning to hike and explore with Rachel and the kids on Saturday, and family photos are on Sunday morning! My family is not big on family photos, so I’m taking an every-other-year approach — and that means this year is the year! It’s a short 15-minute session, so I’m hoping the shorter timeframe will work out better for Kevin and Tom. Ha! My boys are not photo fans. But you know who is? ME! So I’m excited.

12. What I’m looking forward to next month. I’m looking forward to lots! The cabin weekend, Thanksgiving break, actual Thanksgiving, and taking Matilda and Alice to see the Nutcracker, to name a few!

13. What else is new. Just this week, I’ve started feeling a lot more at home, at home.  We’ve just added a couple of new pieces of furniture, and I’ve hung a couple more things on the walls, and I’m feeling a lot more like this place is us. I also kind of think that just adding all of our Halloween decorations around the house has helped!  It makes it feel cozier to me.  (Scary skeletons = cozy, according to me.)  (And I’m sure that fireplace I keep lighting helps too.) Ha!

(Spider-webbed bushes thrill us around here!)

Have a great week, y’all! LOVE!

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7 Responses to What’s Up Wednesday.

  1. Gigi says:

    Love reading about all your outings. Also seeing all the beautiful picturies you post. Seeing what the kids are experiencing is fun to watch. Love o all.

  2. Michelle says:

    What state park is in your picture? It looks so beautiful!! I want to take my family on a trip for Christmas break? Any suggestions for great parks for families? Thank you!

    • loveandkate says:

      Hey! That picture is from the Appalachian Trail in Tennessee, right near Roan Mountain State Park up there! It. Was. Beautiful!! So excited to head back there! For Christmas trips — we stayed at Vogel State Park one year over the holidays, and really loved it. It’s close to lots of other things (waterfall hikes, Mountain Crossings store, Brasstown Bald), and the park itself was just beautiful. I also would love to do Cloudland Canyon over the holidays one year, because it just seems like it would be super pretty to see — and it might snow up there! And Amicalola Falls is always a choice, because their lodge is SO awesome! I’m sure it’s especially gorgeous over the holidays! LOVE!

      • Michelle Serrano says:

        Thank you! Any recommendations on where to stay in Tennessee? We want to go for New Years Eve but everything is booked! We are driving up from Florida!

      • loveandkate says:

        I’m sorry I just saw this! Well, when we went, we stayed at Roan Mountain State Park in a cabin, and it was amazing. We loved it! And I did think that we booked the state park fairly late, and they had quite a few cabins available. Maybe try it?

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