I literally was inviting everyone who lived near us over (Ben was like, “Calm down, Ruby.”). I invited the girls’ swim teachers (they probably think I’m some weird crazy mama!), some parents from swim class, neighbors, and I pretty much had no idea who was going to show up. We’ve lived in such a bubble the entire time we’ve lived in our neighborhood and it really isn’t what I want to teach our girls. I want them to love people, love serving them, and want them to desire to live in community with people. It’s good to get to know people and hear their stories. I love hearing people’s stories! I guess it’s what God has been teaching us lately.
Anyways, it was a potluck, so everyone knew to bring something. I prepared turkey (in a crockpot!) using this recipe, this stuffing, this veggie dish, and this pumpkin bundt cake. Oh and mashed cauliflower and pumpkin bread! Let’s just say it was a really busy weekend for me! I had no clue who was coming, so I wanted to make sure there was plenty. And everyone who did come did bring plenty more!
I borrowed plates from my mom and everything else I already had, so when I saw this, I knew I could totally recreate that. I picked flowers from our garden, but it was looking too spring-y so I grabbed the mini pumpkins on our mantle and scattered those on the table too. The girls gathered candles we already used in the house, plus a couple extra that I picked up on our Ikea run and set those out. We even had a cute little kids table and my girls were the ones that put it together. They were actually good little helpers putting the glassware on the table. My girls were just so excited about new friends coming over, even though it took them like an hour after they arrived to start talking to them.
All you get are pictures of the dinner set up because I snapped these before everyone came and before the food was put out. Once everyone came, we were busy and just enjoying our time getting to know our new friends that taking pictures was the last thing on my mind. We all ate plenty, got to enjoy our candles and string lights once the sun went down, laughed lots, swapped stories, and the girls were running all over the house with their new friends. It was a good way to celebrate fall. I’m also thankful that we had some leftovers, so it saved me from cooking dinner tonight and we got to enjoy more of that yummy turkey and stuffing. This is getting me really excited about next week and Thanksgiving… I love turkey and family time!!!
Do any of you do get togethers with your neighbors often? Hopefully, we didn’t scare them and they want to hang out with us again!last year I went on a birthday trip, we had been planning to do another one this year. Though the week leading up to my birthday weekend, I didn’t want to go, and all I wanted to do was stay home for my birthday and clean. Am I lame or what? My sister and friends were trying to convince me not to do that, but it’s what excited me the most! The girls would still be spending the weekend with my parents, so the idea of being able to clean the house while they weren’t here sounded like the most fun idea (I’m weird, aren’t I?!). So that’s exactly what we did! Ben and I did throw in 2 dinner dates, get to do some mattress shopping (we still haven’t picked one), and he did take me cactus shopping (another birthday request), so I think I made out pretty good.
The actual day of my birthday I cleaned all day long. My horrific throw-it-in-and-close-the-door room is actually looking more like a room, and we got rid of a lot of junk. Both Ben and I cleaned different parts of the house, and our entire house is feeling more manageable. I told Ben not to make me breakfast in bed since the girls weren’t here, and to hold off on giving his present. We agreed we would celebrate the next day as my birthday, so the girls could be part of it all. My birthday was such a productive cleaning day and it’s all I wanted.
We did end up celebrating it the next day and I got the family tradition of breakfast in bed. It was really cute how they made foxes from the waffles! Apparently, it was True’s idea and she was inspired by something she saw in a magazine. The girls had been “working” on my presents for awhile now, so I was excited (and nervous) to finally see what it was. My heart was melting as I opened each one to see their cute creations and cards! True made me a recipe book and Brave made me a pen holder. They also wrapped a bunch of other things that were already mine and gifted it back to me (for example, my dry erase marker, nail polishes, rings, necklaces, highlighters, and the list goes on…)! I was wondering where some of those things went. Really though, their handmade cards and gifts are the sweetest things this mama could get.
The rest of my belated birthday was nice and chill. The girls got to watch some shows, while I got to do a little bit more cleaning, and Ben took care of all our meals (and cleaned some more too!). We had a nice family dinner together and Ben made one of my favorite dishes. It was such a simple birthday and Ben kept calling it my “funny birthday” because all I did was clean. He was feeling bad because that’s what we were doing, but I kept reassuring him, it’s what I really wanted. I just wanted to be able to give the house a good purge and clean, so that my days with my girls are much less of housekeeping and more love giving to my little ones. My heart is feeling very full and loved at how great it is to now be 32, and have my little 4 sweethearts and my loving husband to share all this with. To me, it was the most perfect way to celebrate my 32nd birthday.
Have you ever just wanted to clean for your birthday?
Have a look back at some of our past Halloween stories…
2012: The Adventures of Spider-Girl & She-ra
2011: Barbershop Quartet
2010: The Three Little Piggies
2009: Hannah and Gretel
2008: The Untold Story of Oz
2007: Little Red Riding Hood