What’s Up November

It’s What’s Up Wednesday when I link up with with Sheaffer & Shay and a bunch of other bloggers to share what we have been up to this past November.

I’d love to hear what you have been up to this month too! Leave a comment sharing what you’ve been cooking, watching, reading etc…

What We’re Eating This Month

My son asked me to make One Pan Pasta & Meatball for his birthday dinner. It’s funny how sometimes the simplest meals become our childhood favorites. I would recommend trying this One-Pot Wonder the next night yo find yourself in a time crunch.

I have been making a Mexican inspired dish every Tuesday night in honor of Taco Tuesday and to make meal planning for the week a little simpler. The kids always cheer when they find out that we are having Oven Tacos from the Mommy I’m Hungry Food Blog. I often use store bought Mild Low Sodium Taco Seasoning if I want to save myself a little time.

Pork Tenderloin with Apple Cranberry Gravy (aka “apple pie pork” in our house) is one of the fall meals I look forward to making most. The finished result is always juicy and and flavorful. I like to serve it on a bed of the Trader Joe’s Rice Medley. It is a nutty blend of brown rice, red rice and black barley. It had disappeared from shelves for a few months, but I’m happy to report that it is officially back in stock.

What I’m Reminiscing About

This time last year we took family photos in our holiday pj’s. It ended up being one of my favorite family photo sessions ever! We have worn matching family pj’s since the kiddos were born, but we often don’t get a photo of the four of us together on Christmas morning. This photo shoot gave me the opportunity to officially document one of my favorite traditions. I ended up framing this photo and a couple of the more candid shots to hang on the wall in our master bedroom.

Kim Lind Photography

What I’m Loving

Snow! We are spending week up in Tahoe. It started snowing Tuesday and looks absolutely gorgeous. We are holed inside by the fire watching the snow fall with an ample supply of games, books, hot cocoa and blankets. I can’t think of a better way to spend the week together.

What We’ve Been Up To

Sports! My son’s soccer team had a successful season and played for an extended season due to being invited to play in a couple additional tournaments. In the meantime, his basketball season officially started and he found himself with double the practices and having to choose between sports when games overlapped. Our daughter had her first cheer competition of the season last weekend. There were a lot of extra practices and sore muscles leading up to the competition, but the team’s hard work paid off and they took first for their division.

Final cheer practice before the Aloha Cheer Competition

What I’m Dreading

A world without gingerbread lattes 😢 Christmas shopping and opening presents won’t be the same without my traditional gingerbread latte in hand. It’s so easy to make pumpkin spice flavored coffee now with grocery store creamer, but the gingerbread flavor was unique to Starbucks. I will definitely save some money over the next month with the disappearance of my favorite seasonal hot beverage. Most puzzling is why there was no explanation for its disappearance. Do you have a theory?

What I’m Working On

My daughter and I have been spending time this week filling stockings for a the local charity, SHELTER Inc. My daughter sewed 4 felt stockings together and we are currently working on decorating them and filling them with goodies. We are able to pick the age group and gender of the children we would like to receive our stockings. Selfishly, I enjoy picking at least two children that are age 3-5 and filling their stockings with all of the adorable items I miss being able to gift my own children.

What I’m Excited About

Season 3 of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel premiers on December 6th and I am counting down the days. I wrote all about all the reason I love The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel here.

What I’m Watching

Although I am still waiting for the day after Thanksgiving to start listening to my holiday playlist, I couldn’t resist getting a head start on my Hallmark Holiday Movie Checklist. I’m especially looking forward to Christmas at the Plaza and Christmas in Rome later this week.

What I’m listening To

I listened to the premier podcast of Sibling Revelry with Kate Hudson and Oliver Hudson this month. They interview other well known public figures and their siblings on the podcast. It’s interesting to hear them delve into the various sibling bonds and family dynamics.

I also just added Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: The Podcast to my playlist. My daughter enjoyed the book by the same name that contained stories about the loves of 100 women past and present. When I spotted the podcast I thought it would be great to listen to as a family.

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls

What I’m Reading

I can’t recommend Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens enough. It was such a beautiful story of with a little something for everyone… mystery, friendship, love and the ability persevere against amazing odds. Currently, I have Resistance Women by Jennifer Chiaverini, In the Midst of Winter by Isabel Allende and Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult on my bedside table.

Any recommendations for what I should read next?

What I’m Wearing

I picked up this leopard print midi skirt at J Crew Factory recently and I am enjoying seeing how many ways I can come up with to wear it. I wore it to church last weekend (pictured below) and I am going to wear it again for Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow night paired with a different top and shoes. It is currently on sale for $30.50.

J Crew Factory Outfit
leopard print midi skirt, cardigan

What I’m Doing This Weekend

We are headed to watch the Sacramento Kings play in Sacramento. I’ve never been to the Golden 1 Center. I’m not a huge basketball fan, but it’s always a fun experience watch professional teams play.

What I’m looking Forward to Next Month

Listening to my holiday playlist, decorating gingerbread houses, watching more Hallmark movies, finding the perfect Christmas tree and driving around town to see the holiday lights. This has always been my favorite time of the year.

Happy Thanksgiving my friends. I am forever grateful for the support you have given me since I started this blogging adventure. Every comment, e-mail text, double click and like has encouraged me along the way. THANK YOU 😘

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  1. Andria Dickson

    November 27, 2019 at 9:35 pm

    What a great variety of topics!! Love the stocking stuffing idea. Do you have any other charities you’d recommend that would be good for me and my three girls? I always enjoy your blog! Thank you!!

    1. Parker

      November 29, 2019 at 12:04 pm

      Thank you! We find a lot of our volunteer opportunities through National Charity League. If you are interested in applying this upcoming January/ February let me know. It is for girls and moms in 6th grade and up. Crayon Initiative, Food Bank of Contra Costa County and Monument Crisis Center are a few of my favorite local charities that you can volunteer with and you don’t need to be an NCL member. I’ve listed those organizations and more in this blog post Opportunities to Give Back as an Individual or Family
      Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. Natashajk

    November 27, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    I’ve already pinned your one pan meatball and pasta sauce to make for dinner one night this week. It looks simple and delicious.
    I live in Canada so have complete and total access to the gingerbread latte as it looks like they just disappeared in the States. However, I did find this article for a potential alternative: https://www.thekitchn.com/gingerbread-latte-starbucks-replacement-22969325
    Happy Thanksgiving to you!

    1. Parker

      November 29, 2019 at 11:43 am

      Happy Thanksgiving to you too! Thank you so much for the gingerbread tips. I will have to give them a try. I’m so jealous that you still have access. I wonder why they would still have them in Canada and not here. I hope you enjoy the one pan pasta and meatballs.

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