November 30, 2015

Autumn Adventures

It's now the eve of December first, and our home is already festive and decorated for Christmas. The rest of the world is also in Christmas-mode, but it is technically still the season of fall, so I wanted to make sure I took a moment to share some of the many magical moments we've experienced.

The weather this fall has been warm and balmy here in eastern Michigan, and we've spent endless afternoons enjoying some of the many wonderful parks with playgrounds.

This year we decided to re-visit the orchard and cider mill we first visited last year. We had absolutely perfect perfect weather this year! After feasting on cider and donuts, we headed to the petting zoo area, which was Makenna's favorite last year.

There is a large pen with medium-sized and baby goats where visitors can enter and pet to their hearts' content. Oh my, these sweet little goats sure didn't disappoint!

Makenna was enamored with these two little ones sleeping in the warm sunshine. She kept exclaiming, "Aww! Little baby twins!"

Our little adventurer loves visiting "the farm." She was fearless when it came to climbing the tire and hay "mountains."

These two have my heart!

As we neared the end of autumn's vibrant colors, Matt and I decided to take Makenna to Wolcott Mill State Park. Pre-Makenna, Matt and I used to love to come here to walk the trails in the woods and let Annbelle run to her heart's content. {We brought Annabelle along with us this time, as well, since it had been a few years since we've taken her here to frolic in the forest!}

Upon arrival, we discovered that the forest floor was covered in a beautiful blanket of golden leaves. Ever the little imagine-er, Makenna started singing, "We're off to see the wizard...!"

It was such such a lovely, picturesque day.

Then came Halloween, and our little movie-lover was delighted to dress up as "Dorothy." She was obsessed with any and all things Halloween this year. We try hard to keep Halloween very non-scary and more about enjoying fall and the chance to dress up. Of course there are lots of people who deck their yards out in scary and gruesome decor, and sadly it becomes impossible to shelter her from this. Thankfully Makenna learned the terms "scary" and "spooky" to describe such things, and she'd tell us certain things she saw were "too scary." Yet they never seemed to truly bother her or cause her alarm, and for that we are very thankful!

Matt's parents came to join us for Trick-or-Treating. They brought along their dog, Diesel, who came along to act as Makenna's "Toto."

Makenna loved being escorted by her "Nana" from house to house.

Here's a house with scary decor. Makenna paused when she saw it and said, "Oh dear." The girl was determined to get candy, however, so she approached the homeowner hand-in-hand with her Nana, while she uttered, "oh dear," a few more times.

Even November brought several unusually warm days. We took advantage of a couple more visits to the zoo and local parks, and one afternoon was even warm enough {in the 70's} that I let Makenna wear a pair of shorts outside!

Now it seems all at once, the last of autumn's leaves have fallen and a permanent chill has crept over the land. We have gathered with our loved ones for a cozy Thanksgiving full of laughter, feasting, and love, and we now are wholeheartedly ready to welcome in the Christmas season.

Stay tuned as I have one last especially splendid piece of news to share with you...we now know the gender of the little one growing inside of me! We were able to share this news with our families over Thanksgiving and I'll announce here shortly!

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