5 on Friday

Happy Friday, y'all! Here's my Five...

Sight Word Work

Leading reading groups was one of my favorite activities as a first grade teacher. Teaching a little one to read is just the best thing ever, and my mama heart is so happy that I get to do it now with my own child! Parker started out from the get-go with an interest in letters and words. At age one he was "reading" Exit and Stop signs, and his obsession just grew from there. He knew all letters and sounds at age two, and surprised us on his third birthday with the ability to read several sight words. It was at that moment I realized I could begin more formal reading instruction. 


Hello Monday! Huntsville schools are closed today because, wait for it, we are under a Tropical Storm Warning. When we first talked of moving to Alabama, experiencing a tropical storm was the last thing I thought we'd encounter here. Thoughts go out to those who were really in the hurricane path, of course, and hopes that it dissipates by the time it reaches this far north. 

Friday Five

Hooray for Friday and Hooray for fall! We've had gorgeous, cool mornings all week and I even busted out the peep-toe booties I scored last year (that I never got to wear because Alabama skipped fall last year and went directly from summer to winter). Find them on sale right now here! And now, onto my Friday Five...

Welcome back, Pumpkin Spice Latte! I'd been following this year's release date, so I was at Starbucks bright and early on September 1st! And just for funsies, here's the history of release dates:

Fascinating for all us PSL-obsessed, right? My favorite has been all the PSL photos on Instagram this week - I just love seeing how other people order theirs - Half calf! Almond milk! I always do a double tall, and sometimes I ask for extra whip 😊

Best news of the week? A new royal on the way! I'm just obsessed with Duchess Kate and I think she's even more adorable when preggers!

With our phenomenal weather, we've been eating outside like it's going out of style (because, you know, it will be come November). I whipped up homemade waffles for Sunday brunch and added super easy caramelized bananas - perfection! (Click here for the banana recipe.)

And Labor Day called for an Apple Pie! Max and I may have dug right into the dish with two forks once Parker was in bed (at least we weren't teaching him our poor manners, ha!).

Finally, I did a bit of fall inspired shopping! I'm hoping this top looks just as cute on me as it does on the model! And I couldn't pass up a festive pair of Halloween pajams for Sweet P! I've gotten him some variation of a skeleton pajama every year now (and bonus, these exact ones are on sale today!).

By the way, when I asked Parker what he wants to be for Halloween this year, he said "The same thing as last year." 😂 I die. He's so practical.

Linking up with...


The Bronze Anniversary

Husby and I have been using the "traditional anniversary gift" suggestions for anni gifts from the beginning (and when I say beginning I'm talking first anniversary, which is paper. Husby got all the brownie points for giving me a paper photocopy of a bracelet and then busting out the real diamond one 😍). Anyway, I love that it gives us a jumping off point each year for presents (and we actually toggle back and forth between the traditional and modern suggestions depending on the year). We've done practical (I've purchased a new belt for Max for the leather anniversary, and a polo shirt in a shade of turquoise like the water from our Bora Bora honeymoon for cotton), goofy (our faces on M&Ms for candy), cutesy (framed photos of ourselves together for wood), and responsible (a new dishwasher for appliances after ours broke - it was actually quite fancy and I'm still sad we had to leave it in Arizona when we moved!).

This year was our bronze anniversary. We celebrated with dinner out at The Bottle, where I reserved the famed Mafia Table (this fun booth in the corner window - we spotted a couple doing a celebratory dinner there earlier in the summer and I knew we had to have it!). Old Frond (my newest obsession) did the amazing floral arrangement for the table - it made the dinner so much more festive and fun! This was us spotting our table before entering the restaurant 💓

I'm still angling for a return to Tahiti for our 13th anniversary (😉), but dinner out with my love was just perfect for this anniversary. It fell on a Tuesday, and during this busy season of life, an uninterrupted meal for just the two of us is a rarity.

Plus, it was delicious to boot. I went with the pear salad (the honey pearls were my favorite) and the duck with foie gras sausage. Yum.

The corner table is so much fun - I loved being able to people watch and enjoy the light since sunset is still relatively late this time of year. 

Anniversary dessert is always a yes. 

So what did we do for our traditional gifts? I found "bronze" (I'm pretty sure they were just bronze colored) collar stays on Etsy that I could have hand stamped. Since husby uses collar stays almost every single day (he dons button-ups to work) I thought he'd like these sweet personalized ones.

And husby went "bonze-ish" as well with this new chandelier! It's the same model fixture we had above our dining table in Scottsdale, and I pretty much cried having to leave it when we moved, so I was all kinds of excited about this new one!

But those crystals! Right?!? So ooey gooey!

Does anyone else do traditional gifts for anniversaries? 

American As Apple Pie

Happy Labor Day! We spent yesterday at the pool (our last session of the season) explaining to our four-year-old that Labor Day Weekend unofficially marks the end of summer. I mean, it's pretty sweet that the U.S. sends us off into fall with a holiday 😊

What screams fall? Why the bushel of apples we have in our kitchen right now, courtesy of our local CSA. And what's more American than... apple pie? If you're looking to usher in autumn properly, whip one of these up and you won't be disappointed!

Apple Pie Recipe (adapted from Lauren Conrad)

  • 8 apples (I used golden from our CSA), peeled, cored, and thinly sliced
  • 1 Tbsp cinnamon
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • ¼ cup caramel sauce (recipe below)
  • 1 recipe pie crust (I used store bought refrigerated)
  • egg wash (1 egg mixed with 1 Tbsp water)

Caramel sauce

  • ½ cup butter
  • 3 Tbsp flour
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
Melt butter in a saucepan. Add flour to form a paste. Add water and sugar, and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for about 10 minutes. (You want the sugars to be melted in and not grainy anymore.) Note: you don’t want to turn this into a dark caramel sauce—just a good sugar/butter mixture that caramelizes once baked. 

  1. Mix apples, sugars, flour, and cinnamon all together in a bowl.
  1. Roll out your pie dough circles and add one into a pie pan. Add the apple mixture into the pan and drizzle caramel sauce over apples. Cover with another crust and flute the edges. Cut vents in top, or use cut cookie cutters to cut out shapes in the tops of pies. 
  1. Brush top of pie with egg wash. Bake pie in a 425-degree oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350, and bake for an additional 35 to 45 minutes, until top is golden and the juices are bubbling.

makes 1 pie

Happy Baking!


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