Thursday, November 20, 2014

Five Things I Love About FALL

So today I'm continuing the "five things" trend I love so much, but with a focus on my favorite season...fall. Now that it's starting to be winter in these parts, I figure I better get this fall post up now!

I finally got my kids to a pumpkin patch! It was late in the season and CHILLY but we had a good time anyway:) The farm we've been going to the past few years has a pumpkin slingshot, which is so much fun!

I love making soup in the fall/winter. It's quick, filling, healthy, and easy to make with frequent interruptions from small people--so win win!

THIS soup is the Go make it now!

I decided to embrace all things pumpkin this year and give THIS SOAP a try (gentle foaming only--the best!). It smells delicious and not overwhelmingly pumpkin-y!

I have been LOVING doing some fall photoshoots in this beautiful weather:)  My new favorites are these ones of some adorable kids! Check out more on the PHOTOGRAPHY BLOG.

I'm really enjoying the softer palette and warmer tones of fall--THIS tortoiseshell necklace is a new addition to my collection, and it pairs so well with dark colors, boots, and winter patterns.

So there are some of my loves for fall:)

What is YOUR favorite little thing that's been bringing you joy lately?

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Five Things: Jewish Edition

So I'm a big fan of Five on Friday, but let's be specific blogging activities are a challenge for me! So here are Five Things (on a Thursday), and today I'm going to keep it Jewish around here.

I've been doing a lot of challah baking lately. I made tons and tons over the holiday and now I seem to be out again....hmmm. So another challah baking marathon is in my future!

If anyone is interested in giving challah baking a try, let me know! I have a good recipe to send over:)

One of my longtime dreams has been to build up an Orthodox women's blogging network, and now it's finally coming to fruition! You can check out our intro post HERE and there will be a new post today over HERE!

I came across a wonderful website dedicated to the late Rebbetzin Batsheva Kanievsky, that aims to be a source for connecting Jewish women--check out the website HERE for more information!

I got new hair!  Some of you who are unfamiliar with Orthodox Judaism may not realize this, but in our community we cover our hair after we get married, with scarves, hats, wigs, etc. I personally am a fan of wigs and have been saving up for a new one for a while now! I visited a friend of mine who had a wig consignment shop and came away with this one:)

So far, I love it--nothing like a new haircut (or in this case, a wig--the more expensive version!)

Ellie was the "Shabbos Ima" in nursery school this week--which led to some of the most hilariously cute photos I've ever seen! Think "Fiddler on the Roof" meets toddlerhood:)

Check it out:

I almost spit my drink out laughing looking at this:)

What funny photos from YOUR childhood do you remember?

Thursday, November 6, 2014

A new venture....

Recently, I've started on a new little venture--you can check it out right HERE:)

I've been in love with photos for a long time. As a kid, I would pore over my baby albums and wonder at how people could have changed so much over time. As a scrapbooker, I loved working with photos that made me think, and remember, and feel.

This is one of those things that doesn't make much logical sense, since I have so much on my plate already. But there's just something I can't ignore that pulls me to try this, and challenge myself to grow as much as possible.

(On a side note, I'm still scrapbooking, and often--just not sharing it as much. Somehow that last stage of photographing the layouts kills me!)

So for now, I'm taking a leap. You can check out the website HERE and Facebook page HERE!

And now, a question for you: What dream would YOU pursue today if nothing was stopping you?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Working Motherhood

One of the things I like to talk about on this blog is being a working mother. Recently, I posted on the topic HERE.

Today, I'm over at Teaching Sam & Scout to join a really fun series sharing lots of views on being a working mom--hop on over HERE to check it out!

Let me know your thoughts!

What is YOUR favorite tip on how you make your life work for you, whether you work out of the home or not?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Across the World

Tonight, I decided to quickly check the news before bed, having no idea what awaited me. Since my recent posts, things in Israel have been "quiet."  But today, all that changed.

On Wednesday morning, a religious couple took their daughter to the Western Wall for the first time. They had been married for some time, and she was their miracle baby--and they had dreamed of taking her to this, the holiest place in the world for Jews. On their way home, a Hamas operative drove his car into a crowd of people, the baby girl went flying, and died later on from her injuries. She was buried Wednesday night.

Although I don't mention it that often anymore, I too, waited a long time to have my babies. And I too, was blessed with a beautiful, sweet baby girl. So I see myself in these people, and cannot even imagine their loss. 

This blog post expresses exactly how I feel. 

May G-d bring us peace now, today.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Life Lately

There has been a little bit of radio silence on the blog lately--take three major Jewish holidays, one of which constitutes building a hut in your backyard, plus a road trip, plus a family wedding, and it's hard to get to the computer too often!

So here's what we've been up to for the last few weeks!

A lot of bottle drinking.

Lots and lots of challah making!

Pumpkin cinnamon buns--which, if you haven't tried them,  you must. You are missing out! Recipe HERE.

We built our sukkah in the backyard for the holiday:

And decorated the inside with a fall theme!

We also celebrated a beautiful family wedding:

And then, in between holidays, we painted some pottery for a date-night-in-the-daytime extravaganza.

(My salt and pepper shakers in progress)

There has not been as much scrapbooking these past few weeks as I would like, or as much sleep for that matter. But it was a great time and we are looking forward to life calming down a bit.

What is YOUR favorite fall dessert?

Friday, October 3, 2014

Yom Kippur and Real Life

Tonight begins Yom Kippur, the most serious day on the Jewish calendar.  It's the day where we atone for our sins of the past year.

It sounds pretty depressing and punitive--why spend a day going on and on about all of the bad things we've done? Why give ourselves a complex? But truthfully, Yom Kippur is about asserting our essential goodness, not our faults. We stand before G-d and say, "I know I messed up--but I know that I am capable of so much more than that."

This is easier said than done.  I don't know about you, but for me I find that I struggle with the same things, over and over again. I struggle with anger. I struggle with feeling left out of anything. I struggle with prioritizing so that my family gets the best of my energy, and not the tiny bits I have left after a sea of commitments. I struggle with not getting too worked up about the little things.

{A family photo}

I read books, write lists, put post-its around the house to remind myself what I'm working on--but then, in the heat of the moment, most of those reminders seem to disappear. It's hard to believe that I really am capable of so much more. It's hard to stand up before G-d and try again, hoping that at the very least I'm moving in the right direction.

But then again, that very trying and failing is the best gift we have to offer G-d. In our humanity, in our faults and our efforts and our steps forward and our backtracks, we create something much more special than what we would have without struggle.

{Some REAL family photos}

So today I will take one step forward. I will remind myself, and G-d, that I can do so much more. That I am here in this world for a reason, and that I am creating a life to be proud of.

Wishing you all a happy and healthy year--with lots of human moments, and lots of growth. 

Photo credits: Abbie Sophia Photography