Saturday, September 24, 2016

Judith Pics, Sawyer Pics, Homeowner Pics, Pinterest Stuff (Temptation Object Lesson), Quotable Quotes AND Chalkboard Pumpkins

Good Saturday afternoon!

RANDOMNESS #1 - What would a blog post on A Simple Life be without a pic or two of Judith?


Not much!

Here we are just sitting around talking about the differences between the pumpkin and the gourd.

Basically, we made a "smooth" pile and a "bumpy" pile.

And then she began throwing them at the dining room table.

So we ate a snack instead.

When her Daddy came back from his errand, we rode to a local Farmer's Market and let her pick out a pumpkin...

And a gourd.


She tenderly held onto her gourd.

She didn't chunk it at anything.

Which makes me think...

Well, obviously I think she's brilliant...

And also, I think she may be a fellow Autumn Nut!

RANDOMNESS #2 - I went to Bev's house and visited with Sawyer and the rest of the fam recently.

Needless to say, it is uncanny how much he favors his Great-Aunt Belinda.

Uncanny, but very, very cool.

RANDOMNESS #3 - I am proud to announce Austin and Melia are officially homeowners.

I remember when Mike and I had a picture taken much like this one.

I was all like, "What have we done?"

With a tinge of almost hysterical, "I'm so happy."

And quickly back to, "What have we done?"

Very exciting times for these two!

Quotable Quotes

"A moment of patience in a moment of anger saves you a hundred moments of regret." Anonymous

Pinterest Stuff

Object Lesson

Temptation - Balls of temptation thrown by the Devil will bounce off the Word of God.

You will need the following:

Old bed sheet
Crayon or marking pen
Pairs of rolled up socks (at least one for each child... more if possible)

You will need to do the following to prepare:

Prepare the sheet and socks before class. Tightly roll up the pairs of socks so they resemble balls. On the bed sheet, write in large letters, "The Word of God." If you do not want to write directly on the bed sheet, write the words on sheets of paper and tape them to the bed sheet.

Ask the kids to do the following:

You will ask a volunteer to walk across the room. Instruct the other kids to stand along the opposite wall, and keeping one hand on the wall, throw the socks at the volunteer as he/she tries to walk across the room without being hit. Depending on the amount of time you have, you may want to repeat this several times with different volunteers. Then you will ask the kids if they think they can hit you as you walk across the room. When you walk across, you will take the sheet with "The Word of God" and stretch it out in front of you. The socks will hit the sheet and not you.

Say the following:

"We are tempted every day of our life. It is sometimes hard to resist temptation. Let me show you how hard it is. I need one volunteer." (Instruct the volunteer to walk from one end of the room to the other along the wall when you say go).

"Now these socks represent temptation. I want everyone else to take a temptation, and stand along this other wall (opposite wall from volunteer). While keeping one hand on the wall, I want you to see if you can hit the volunteer with your temptation ball once I have asked him or her to start walking. Ready, go!"

Then ask the volunteer, "Did any of the temptation balls hit you? They were somewhat hard to avoid. Temptation is like that, it comes from everywhere. Would someone else like to try?" (Repeat several times with different volunteers as time permits.) Then ask, “Do you think I can walk across without being hit by temptation?” (When you walk across, take the sheet and stretch it out in front of you as a shield.) "See, God has given us His Word so that we might be able to fight off temptation and defeat the Devil. God's word is very powerful. It can act as a shield between us and whatever the Devil tries to throw at us."

End with prayer.

Chalkboard Pumpkin Devotion

You will need the following:

Black chalkboard paint
Sponge applicator

Pick a fall verse to display in your home (or as a centerpiece on the dining room table for the month of October), and write it on the Chalkboard Pumpkin. Memorize the verse as a family and teach the kids the meaning.

"'My hand made all things. All things are here because I made them,' says the Lord." Isaiah 66:2

"Happiness makes a person smile." Proverbs 15:13

"Taste and see that the Lord is good." Psalm 34:8

Note - The same thing can be done during the month of November, except write one or two things your family is thankful for each night before sitting down to dinner.

Have a wonderful FIRST WEEKEND OF FALL, Y'ALL! I'll talk to you in a few days.



P.S. This Chick turns 20 tomorrow. Mike and I are making a bee-line to Auburn after Sunday School so I can see her and smell her and hug her.

It's kinda what I like to do!

Emma, Roxie, Ally and Ellie at the Chi O Fall Formal.

Roxie, Susan, Julianna and Audrey before last week's game.

P.S.S. We're having a combo birthday party (Courtney, Roxie and Josh) with the family next week, so stay tuned for that major EVENT!

Friday, September 16, 2016

Pics of Judith (SURPRISE!) and Pinterest Stuff (Be Slow to Anger Object Lesson AND More Fall Bucket List Items)

Good Friday evening!

RANDOMNESS #1 - As is becoming our custom, Judith spent the night Monday night and fun was had by all.

Well, at least Nana B and Pop.

Judith is 20 months old now, and I am a firm believer in the adage, "You're never too young for Autumnal Training."

You've heard of that before, haven't you?

Autumnal Training?


I thought so.

The Autumnal Training Class 101 went very well, and she's already ready for Acorn Gathering, Cold Cider Sippin' and Squirrel Chasing.

Once we pass those classes with flying colors (and we most certainly will), guess what will be next?

That's right!

Baby Punkin Chunkin', Pile of Leaf Jumping and Candy Corn Consumption.

Things are about to get pretty wonderful over here!

And to make things even better last Tuesday, Grandmother came over and read some books to Judith after she finished her refrigerator collage.

Except for three really, really bad patterns going on in such a limited amount of space, I kinda like this pic.

Pinterest Stuff

Object Lesson - Be Slow to Anger

1. You’ll need two large bowls filled with water, dishwashing liquid and a straw for each person.

2. Form two groups. Designate one group as Group 1 and the other group as Group 2. Give each person a straw.

3. Say, "Let's pretend this dishwashing liquid is 'anger.' I’m dropping one drop of anger in each bowl. Group 1, blow as quickly as you can to produce lots of bubbles. Group 2, blow as slowly as you can to produce the least number of bubbles."

4. Continue the game until bubbles are about to overflow the “quick-blowing” bowl. Exchange groups and repeat the game.

5. Read aloud James 1:19.

6. Ask, "What happened when you blew quickly? How was that bowl like or unlike someone who is quick to anger? What happened when you blew slowly? How is that like or unlike someone who is slow to anger? What happens when we quickly lose our tempers? What makes you angry? What helps you keep from getting angry quickly?"

After the conversation, read James 1:19 aloud one more time, and close with a prayer.

Simple, yet effective!

More Fall Bucket List Items

1. Make apple cider
2. Visit a corn maze
3. Go apple picking
4. Play backyard football
5. Roast marshmallows
6. Read outside
7. Host a bonfire
8. Visit a farm
9. Bake a pie
10. Go horse back riding
11. DIY a front door wreath
12. Have a picnic in the park
13. Rake leaves for a neighbor
14. Eat candy corn
15. Try a new pumpkin recipe
16. Volunteer at a food pantry
17. Make a caramel smoothie
18. DIY fleece blankets
19. Make a pumpkin dip
20. Stuff a scarecrow
21. Go backyard camping
22. Try a new flavor of coffee
23. Visit a state fair

Have a great weekend. I'll be talking to you soon.


The Enchanting Belinda

P.S. Here a few pics from last year's Pumpkin Party with Judith and her sweet cousin, Sarah Grace.

Plans are being made for the 2016 EVENT! I simply cannot wait!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Sawyer Pics, Zac Pics, Judith Pics... Just the Usual AND Pinterest Stuff (How to Shop for Children at Christmas, Snickerdoodle Mug Cake AND Some Additions to Your Fall Bucket List)

Good Thursday afternoon!

RANDOMNESS #1 - Let's go ahead and cover the stuff I did this past weekend before we hit the HIGHLIGHT of the blog... FALL STUFF!

Friday night found me sitting in the bleachers at the Springville football game with my Mom. We went to the first game of the season to watch my nephew (her grandson), Zac, march in the halftime show.

After the halftime show, as is our custom, we found Zac and I took a picture of him and Grandmother.

He did a great job, but he was SO hot.

Can I say here and now how much I appreciate all band members in the state of Alabama during the months of August and September and the first half of October?

The Enchanting Belinda would not be able to hold an instrument, remember the music, march forward, sideways, backward AND wear a wool band uniform, giant polyester onesie AND t-shirt and shorts.

I absolutely, positively could NOT, would NOT put myself through that particular discomfort for the entertainment of family, friends and strangers in the bleachers on a hot, muggy Alabama pre-fall night.


Not I.

I think the best I could offer would be standing on the field in a t-shirt and shorts holding a light instrument by my side.

Not marching.

Not blowing.

Not wearing garments made of material used by special scientists who live in the Arctic for months at a time while working in sub-zero temperatures.


I didn't mean to make Springville's halftime show all about me, but sometimes that is just what happens.

On a much happier note, while we were sitting in the bleachers waiting for Zac to perform, we were mere inches away from Brad, Stephanie and Sawyer.

And that was pretty wonderful!

RANDOMNESS #2 - Courtney and Judith visited Saturday afternoon while Josh ran some errands in town. Uncle Austin and Aunt Melia stopped by to play for a little while, and it was much fun!

Uncle Austin and Judith have very similar television show tastes...

And Aunt Melia enjoys giving nose kisses, so it was a pretty good way to spend a lazy Saturday afternoon.

RANDOMNESS #3 - We also had Judith spend the night with us Monday night. She and I decided to just hang around the house all day Tuesday.

As I am sure you can tell, we spent the time together wisely...

Hiding behind the couch...

AND eating popsicles in the baby pool.

Pinterest Stuff

How to Shop for Children at Christmas

1. Something they want.

2. Something they need.

3. Something to wear.

4. Something to read.

5. Something to do (event ticket, movie ticket, museum outing, etc.).

6. Something for "me" (personal calendar, letter, photo in frame, etc.).

7. Something to do with the family (board game, DVD, restaurant gift certificate, etc.).

Some Additions to Your Fall Bucket List

1. Bake an apple pie... from scratch.

2. Play flag football with a big group of family and friends. So much fun!

3. Make pumpkin spice pancakes.

4. Play in pumpkin guts.

5. Drink apple cider often during the cool months!

6. Go on a thankfulness walk/hike.

7. Go on a lantern (or flashlight) walk around the neighborhood at night as a family.

Snickerdoodle Mug Cake

You will need the following for the cake batter:

1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup milk, at room temperature
2 tablespoons salted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

You will need the following for layering/topping:

1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1. In a small bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and cinnamon until thoroughly, completely combined, with no streaks of any ingredients remaining.

2. Blend in milk, butter and vanilla until batter is smooth. Into a 14-ounce (or larger) microwave-safe mug with straight sides, scoop a big spoonful of batter, then sprinkle with a spoonful of cinnamon sugar. Alternate layers, ending with cinnamon sugar.

3. Microwave on high for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes, or until cake is done to your liking. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes before serving.

NOTE - A tall, cylindrical mug with straight (not angled) sides will ensure that the cake bakes evenly. I found a 14-ounce mug to be the perfect size to allow the cake to rise up while baking without overflowing. (I filled my mug to the top with water and then transferred the water to a measuring cup to determine its capacity.) If you use a smaller mug, you may want to bake the cake on top of a plate or paper towel to catch any possible overflow.

The strength of individual microwaves can vary. The first time you make this recipe, be prepared to experiment a bit to make sure that 1 minute is the perfect length of baking time. The nice thing about this cake is that even if it is undercooked, you don't have to worry about raw eggs!

Unsalted butter will work just fine in this recipe, but I find that using salted butter adds a tiny flavor boost.

Have a great rest of the day! I'll be back soon with more Fall goodness... no matter how high the temperature continues to rise in The Dale.


The Enchanting Belinda

P.S. Please enjoy a few pics from last year's best season...

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