Saturday, October 29, 2016

The Ends of October

Greetings faithful readers and friends,

October has been tough, but we're nearing the end now, and November will be the start of a new month. If you've been reading for awhile, you know that new months are always particularly inspiring to me, but I can especially say this of November as it is a month where we focus on thankfulness and reflection.

Despite not having a chance to blog the last two weeks, I wanted to capture some of the happy moments from them.

The biggest news is that, on October 15th, I traded in Goldie and got a new car!

I choose a Honda CR-V EXL, and I couldn't be happier with it. I was ready for something with more room, but I still wanted a car that would fit in my garage. This is the perfect car for me. We also looked at Ford Escape and Mazda CX5, but the Honda stole my affections. After driving Goldie for 100,000 miles, it was hard to say goodbye. A few tears were shed, but the dealership seemed confident that Goldie would find a new home.

My CRV is a fancier car than I'm used to. I love that it connects with my phone via bluetooth, so I can make and receive calls without physically holding the phone. I love the backup camera and the right turn lane camera. I even have a three month subscription to Sirius Satellite Radio, which is also really fun! 

Last weekend, my mom came to town, and it was amazing to see her. We went furniture shopping while Brendan caught up on some work. On our agenda: finding a new couch. Mine was purchased from Craigslist for $200.00 in 2008 and is on its last leg. Our big requirement was that the couch had to be a sleeper sofa (not easy to find), and we also wanted something very comfortable and fairly attractive. We found the perfect couch (it's not this one; I just like that picture of my mom). Brendan approved, and we placed our order on Tuesday. It should be delivered in 8-10 weeks. I can't wait! Pictures to come. 

While my mom was here, we played Yahtzee, saw Girl on the Train (the book was better; the movie is far too serious with no fun moments; so disappointing if you were expecting anything like Gone Girl), and we ate at the Red Oak Kitchen, a restaurant we had never tried before. We highly recommend the Red Oak Kitchen; we all shared cornbread, pizza, tacos, and salad, and we had plenty of leftovers for everyone to have lunch the next day.

I got my hair done on Thursday with Max at Maximus Salon. I snapped this photo to send to Brendan at work. He loved it, and my mother in law called it "wicked cute."

Speaking of wicked...

We had a "wicked fun" time last night catching our friend Jenni in Midland Community Theater's production of Southern Hospitality. There's still a chance to see it tomorrow and next weekend, so we highly recommend that you go, especially if you need a good laugh.

And, we spent today readying ourselves for Halloween.

There was pumpkin carving and pumpkin seed roasting. Here's my pumpkin:

Brendan's pumpkin seeds (cinnamon, sugar, and all things delicious). In other cooking adventures, I made lemon poppy seed pancakes with lemon glaze and eggs for breakfast and mac and cheese for dinner. Sometimes a cozy day at home is just what you need.

My pumpkin at night:

Brendan's pumpkin. Isn't it great?

In the past week, I've embarked on a Harry Potter movie marathon. We decided to transform the tutoring center at work into Harry Potter world for Halloween. All the tutors and staff took the official JK Rowling quiz to be sorted into a house. I'm a Ravenclaw, and Brendan is a Gryffindor (no surprises there). We'll be wearing our "house uniforms" on Monday :)

In other work news:
We took the honor society members bowling two weekends ago and participated in the Halloween carnival this Thursday. We have fifty active members: easily the most we've had in a fall semester.
91% of my flex students moved into 1301 with me, which makes me happy in a way nothing else could.
The fall creative writing contest closed to submissions last night with more entries than Brendan has seen since he started running the contest four years ago.
I was extremely honored to be nominated for the Teaching Excellence Award.

Our friends and family have given us much to be thankful for, and November hasn't even begun. I'm ready to welcome the season of giving and being thankful, but first, I can't wait to pass out candy and celebrate Halloween in our house for the first time.

Happy End of October, all. We hope the month is wrapping up nicely for you with a relaxing and cozy weekend.


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