• dairy free french toast recipe
    Breakfast,  Dairy Free From Scratch,  Recipes

    Dairy Free Pumpkin Pie French Toast

    After our snowy Halloween the weather has stayed pretty cold and we even got a few inches of beautiful fluffy white snow for the kids to play in. We’re still enjoying the autumn flavors even though we kind of skipped it here in Central Indiana.  French toast has always been a staple in our house but right now it’s Dairy free French toast. It’s quick I always keep my fridge and my pantry stocked with everything we need to make it, everyone eats it and the leftovers make for great freezer breakfasts we can heat up quickly on hectic mornings. This version adds in some fall spirit in the form…

  • Halloween candy
    Adventures,  Halloween,  Holidays,  Midwest Living

    Halloween 2019

    Remember that little glimpse of fall we got? Well that was pretty much fall. It went from 90 to 35 with just a few beautiful crisp days in between. By the time Halloween 2019 rolled around it was snowing. Personally I consider snow in October unthinkable but apparently also a reality when you live in the Midwest. Guy and my mom took turns decking our house out with all kinds of light and decor, both cute and creepy. We had taken a night the weekend before Halloween to carve our pumpkins. Before we went out in the cold and wet, we had some friends from the neighborhood over for a…

  • Monthly Meal Plan
    Budgeting and Saving Money,  Meal Planning,  Recipes

    How to Save Money with a Well-Stocked Pantry and our November Meal Plan

    Last month I shared how we feed our family of five (plus two dogs and three guinea pigs) on $400 a month along with what we had on our dinner calendar for October. This month I want to talk a little bit about how we use our pantry to save money and inspire our monthly meal plan. At the very bottom is a list of our dinners for the entire month of November. This post contains affiliate links, if you purchase any of these items through our link we get a small commission at no extra cost to you. Planning from the Pantry Keeps Food from Expiring For years I…

  • pregnant after miscarriage
    Infertility and Pregnancy Loss

    A Letter to Mother to Be in Front of Me at the Grocery Store

    TW: Pregnancy loss mentioned. Maybe the last time it was the teller at the bank or the waitress at the restaurant you went to for your anniversary dinner, but this time it was the cashier at the grocery store who asked. “Is this your first baby?” I saw it, your hand instinctively falling to smooth your shirt over your belly, the look on your face, the hesitation. Two answers, both right in some ways and wrong in others, neither without consequence. “Uh…. yes.” You didn’t elaborate but you didn’t need to. The cashier didn’t catch it. She rambled on about tiny onesies as she pulled the ones you were buying…

  • Vegan Pumpkin Scones
    Breakfast,  Dairy Free From Scratch,  Dessert,  Recipes,  Vegan

    Vegan Pumpkin Scones

    Every time I give birth, I also give up dairy. My babies can’t have anything with milk in it so when I’m nursing I can’t either. Knowing full well, that I’ve got at least a year of skipping out on milkshakes and whipped cream, I spend my pregnancies eating more than my fair share of grilled cheese sandwiches and buttered rice. This recipe for vegan pumpkin scones is one I came up with when Harper was just a few months old. Baby’s wean and they eventually get their first scoop of ice cream but even when all of us are able to indulge in whatever treats we love, these scones…

  • Trader's Point Creamery
    Adventures,  Indiana,  Indianapolis with Kids,  Midwest

    Trader’s Point Creamery

    We actually ended up at Trader’s Point Creamery because, as is often the case with three kids, by the time we were ready to walk out the door with people fed, shoes ties, and meltdowns curtailed, it was too late for us to venture to our original destination. Instead of driving 2 hours to Spring Mill State Park ,we decided to explore somewhere closer to our home turf. We needed a location where our kids could spend some time in the sunshine and come home tired and dirty and ready to eat dinner and go to bed. This place checked those boxes. In a lovely spot in Zionsville, just far…

  • homesickness
    Insights and Anecdotes

    Homesick

    I have vivid memories of other people’s homesickness. Remember laying doubled up with my cousin in the bottom bunk while another cousin laid in the top bunk practically weeping. Nothing we could say or do made her start to laugh or stop crying. She was so lonely for her mama and the comfort of her own bed that it tied her belly up in a tangle of knots that refused to loosen until her mother’s car appeared at the end of the long gravel driveway. Another time I eavesdropped as a neighborhood mom fretted to mine about the daily letters her daughter had sent from camp, each begging for someone…

  • Headless Horseman 2019
    Adventures,  Indiana,  Indianapolis with Kids,  Midwest

    Headless Horseman 2019

    Conner Prairie’s Headless Horseman is probably our number one favorite Indianapolis with kids events. Harp and Indy have been talking about it since the first spring leaves sprouted. One part fall festival, one part spookfest, there is something for all my kids to enjoy, regardless of their age or interest in being totally creeped out. Harper would prefer we skip anything mildly scary. She gets the heebie jeebies walking through the Halloween section of Home Depot. Indy on the other hand, well he’s more than happy to talk about spiders and gross stuff all day long. And Hank is still unphased by most things but I’m not sure if that’s…

  • grain free dog treats
    Pet Treats,  Recipes

    Homemade Pumpkin Parsley Dog Biscuits

    Our animals are spoiled. The guinea pigs live in a cage large enough to be considered a full on chateau. The dogs sleep in our bed. Sadie at the foot and Scout up on my pillow around my head like a night cap. We treat them as best we can and part of that is minding the food they eat. While, I can’t always keep Hank from dropping 90% of the food we give him on the floor or get to it before the dogs, we try to make sure Sadie doesn’t end up with wheat or corn anything because she’s allergic to them. They are on a special diet…

  • meal planning on a budget
    Budgeting and Saving Money,  Meal Planning,  Recipe Roundup

    Feeding a Family of 5 on a Budget

    When we moved to Indiana, one of our main goals was to get back into the black. After years of not quite making ends meet and living paycheck to paycheck, we had and still have a lot to pay off. Keeping those goals in mind, our monthly budget for groceries for a family of five, plus two dogs and two guinea pigs is $400. That’s including all the breakfasts, lunches, dinners, snacks, and treats we eat in a month along with stuff like cleaning supplies, dog food, critter supplies, deodorant, shampoo. You get what I’m saying. All our food and household items. When people hear we eat well on less…

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