Signs Of Autumn Are Everywhere

Oh my goodness…..are you feeling what I am feeling here in WI? Although, I am not by any means feeling the gloom and doom of winter quite yet, I sure am feeling the signs of autumn.

Leaves are beginning to change colors on the tree branches.

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Some have already fallen from trees.

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And some are just starting to change. Fall is quickly approaching for sure.

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This is the time of year where summer is trying so hard to last just a few weeks longer.

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Iced coffees are no longer my preferred morning beverage…it’s now a big cup of hot coffee to take the morning chill off.

Soups are making a come back on my weekly meal list with no complaints from my husband or son.

For us here, we are living everyday like its the last. Fall is a great time of year to hike here in the midwest with much less bugs. We spent the entire weekend hiking waterfalls and with camping plans right around the corner….blogging is really going to have to take the back burner for a bit until I have more time. So just know that I am collecting photos and fun outings to share with all of you when time permits. And I can only hope you use what I share to get out and try something new and be inspired to enjoy the great outdoors as much as I do.

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As for now, I will be back as soon as possible….first I have to savor every moment before the snow begins to fall.

 

 

 

 

Brrrrrrr….It’s Getting Chilly

Oh boy, it’s getting chilly outside already.

Which in my house means it’s time for pumpkin muffins, comfort food and dinner meals to be enjoyed indoors again instead of outside on the porch. Some of our favorites are beef stroganoff, chicken piccata,  and homemade potpie with a corn bread crust.

chicken piccata

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Soon enough we will be arguing about when it’s cold enough to turn on the heat, if there is enough ice to ice fish on safely (which in my opinion, there is never enough to do this sport SAFELY) and we will need to adjust the alarm clock for yet another hour earlier for the predicted snowstorm to dump on us overnight and my husband to still make it to work on time. It’s amazing how much 3a.m. differs from 4a.m. when ultimately, its only an hour difference. But that hour makes all the difference in the world to me.

Our leaves have started falling and are adding color to our lawn.

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Workouts are easier and much cooler to do at this time of year. And ironically enough, the sun going down sooner makes me even more motivated to go to the gym in the evening. I always feel like in the summer months, I am wasting daylight going to exercise in a gym surrounded by four walls and lights. So, it getting dark a bit earlier I don’t mind so much at this stage.

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Soon, I need to go through my backpack and add some hand warmers, an extra pair of socks, and I will be able to take out the bug spray and head nets, which is always a good swap in my mind. And hopefully we will find time to start geocaching again, along with finishing a trail we started mid summer, and also get in a bit more disc golf before the nets are all taken down for the winter.

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Well, that’s it for me right now. Morning comes early and I have a full crew arriving bright and early. My hope is to have some crock pot recipes for you all real soon….that is if all goes well this week and I find time to type. If not you can rest assured that I made it, ate it,and enjoyed it, but just didn’t get time to type it up cause I was hiking, exercising, or just having fun doing other things in the great outdoors.

 

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What I Am Loving Lately

What a week it has been. It’s finally Friday which makes it the perfect time to tell you about a few things I have been loving lately.

Leaves on the trees are starting to emerge everywhere. It’s been so long since we have seen green grass and leaves that it makes me giddy just to image that soon we will be playing under our big shade tree.

Muffins in a cup. I came across these while grocery shopping recently and they were on sale for $1 each.

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You just add water, stir, and microwave for a minute or so. How cool is that? Perfect for a single serving dessert craving or in my case a youngster to do by themselves when they are dying to cook and you simply don’t have time.

Farm fresh eggs. We have been offered the opportunity to get farm fresh eggs on a weekly basis from one of my husbands co workers. When he told me this, I was excited. We regularly purchase 4 dozen eggs a week. To get them straight from the farm for less than store bought eggs is terrific.

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Lightweight option for camp towels. Did you know that a cheaper version of a fast drying, lightweight camp towel can be found at your local discount store? You can go to the automotive department and purchase a microfiber towel for under $10 that will do everything your bath towel does but takes up a lot less space in your backpack. IMG_0767

You can use these as your bath or beach towel. You can dry the dew off your tent in the morning before packing it up. You can also roll it up and stuff it in your boots/shoes for a few hours and it will suck up the moisture from a rainy hike. These are much cheaper than actual camp towels and so much more practical than a normal everyday bath towel.

Book: A Blistered Kind of Love by Angela and Duffy Ballard As you all know I have been sitting for quite awhile. To pass my time I have been reading a lot and found this book to be very humorous. It’s about a couple that has decided to test their relationship by hiking the PCT together. If you like hiking and are looking for a good laugh, I highly recommend reading this one.

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Dawn infused paper towels and hand wipes. It’s no secret I am a germaphobe. I am not obsessed to the point that I cannot function in society but I do need to feel clean. That being said, the thing I miss the most when we camp or hike is being able to wash my hands at certain times. It’s at this time of year we stock up on packaged wipes to have in our car/truck, my backpack, our camp supply box, and so on. This year we came across these new Dawn infused paper towels in a trial pack. There are 6 towels per pack and when I saw them for $1 each I grabbed a few. These will be perfect for wiping down dirty picnic tables, washing cooking pots/dishes at the campsite, and for wiping down things in hotel rooms. (In case you are laughing at me about wiping down a picnic table, let me explain. I once saw a parent change their child’s dirty diaper on a park picnic table and literally walk away for the next family to enjoy a picnic on. So yes, I do wipe down every picnic table I eat on!) All we will have to do is add a little water from our water bottles and cleanliness will be easily achieved.

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What have you been loving lately?

 

 

The Difference A Few Degrees Means To Me

You wouldn’t think a few degree temperature drop would really make such a difference in my life but let me assure you, it really does. Here are a few examples of what has changed in the last few weeks.

  • I have more laundry. I often will wear three shirts just to keep warm during the days and when we go outside to play. Our son wears a hoodie and tshirt when it’s cooler. Then my husband adds a tshirt to his work uniform. You also need to add jeans instead of shorts which adds up fast. All this results in a lot more laundry per day.
  • We add soup back into our diets. This is not a bad thing by any means. We all love soup and it’s a great way to get veggies into kids that don’t like veggies:-) Shhhh, don’t tell them!
  • Blankets are never packed away far. Normally we only dig out the blankets for fort building time but when the temps drop they are out all day long. There is nothing better than snuggling under the blankets reading stories all together before nap time.
  • Outside play takes more preparation. Instead of slipping on sandals and applying sunscreen before heading outdoors we now need to be better prepared. Jackets, hats, socks, shoes, and the kleenex box.
  • Kleenex is in high demand! For some reason as soon as the temps drop the noses start to run and run and run and run…..
  • Grilling season comes to an end. Oh, how this saddens me:-( What can I say, I love my nights off when my hubby grills. We are not to the point yet where he will not grill (in other words, the patio is not covered with snow yet) but now grilling is at a minimum.
  • Goodbye to daylight. I already miss sitting on the porch together at night talking about our days. By the time we eat, clean up dinner, workout and get home it is already dark.
  • I am constantly vacuuming up leaves. Our trees drop little yellow leaves that love sticking to shoes and get carried inside. These drive me crazy!!!!!!

These are just a few things that change with the cooler temperatures in my life.

 

What do you notice most in your life when the weather turns cooler?

Looking Ahead At Fall

It’s September which means, school is back in session around our area, apples are almost ready to be picked, and the leaves on our trees are starting to fall faster everyday. I love the crisp mornings, the piles of leaves we can rake and jump into, and the abundance of fall veggies available at my favorite market. This year, however, I am pretty excited about a few other things I have on the calendar.

My husband and I are going camping at one of our favorite parks in the next few weeks. The last time we were there it was over 100 degrees and hiking was pure torture. I have never been so hot and miserable. I am hoping for a cooler tenting experience this time around.

We are also going to squeeze in a fall trip to hike another state park that we love. Although this one we will be staying in a cabin since our son will be joining us.

I have another girls day planned coming up where we are taking a bus trip to an art festival. None of us have ever been to this art festival so we are all very excited.

My husband and I will be celebrating 21 years of marriage this fall….. which I really can’t believe it’s been that long. No plans are made yet but I am sure we will come up with something.

And the most amazing thing I have planned in the next few weeks is a day of retail therapy. I am not a big fan of shopping, although once a year I take this bus trip to a city that I LOVE. In the past I have had so many packages that I simply ache for days afterwards from carrying all my bags for hours. This year however, I found a solution to this problem….I have hired my hubby to accompany me on this trip! Can you believe it? I still can’t, quite honestly. It is going to cost me a pair of shoes that he wants and I am sure I will find out what else in good time. Either way, it should be a great trip. (I hope)

That’s what our fall calendar looks like. In between all these events we are also hoping to achieve come more miles geocaching on the Ahnapee trail, a few more trips in our kayaks, and as many outdoor walks as I possibly can before the snow flies.

All in good time….