Wednesday, October 5, 2016

[Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party] - Recap #1

Welcome to this year's first Countdown to Halloween link up party hosted by myself, Nina from The Joni Journey, Jamie from Cocktails & Carseats, and Elizabeth from Chasin' Mason! Check back on this post for more details. I just adore this time of the year and I am excited to see how everybody has been celebrating so far this month. So, grab a button, add your post to the link-up, and have fun!

Sweet Turtle Soup


Here is how we kicked off October!

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party!

Technically this is from the last day of September. We were planning on going to the party sometime in October but then realized that the tickets were cheaper in September. So, at the last minute we decided to switch days. I'm also deciding to still count this as part of the Countdown!

The night before I filled Aria's pumpkin bucket with new skeleton jammies, the skeleton shirt she is wearing in the pictures, and a print out of our Halloween Party tickets. And, in the morning she found it and learned that we were going to the Magic Kingdom! She was so excited she couldn't help but run into the bedroom to tell daddy 3 or 4 times while he was trying to get a bit more sleep so he was ready to drive home after the party.

This was our first time attending the Halloween Party, but we decided to focus on rides instead of all the neat party entertainment. Aria's favorite part is definitely the rides and one of the reasons we decided to go at all was because she wanted to go for her birthday. But, with baby brother due right before her birthday it just wasn't going to work out. 

With Halloween Party tickets you can enter Magic Kingdom at 4. The Party itself starts at 7. And, even before they kicked everybody else out of the park at 7 the lines were really short and sweet. Aria got to hit up all of her favorites, including Dumbo. She also got to ride Splash Mountain for the first time...three times in a row. She hasn't stopped talking about it since. She keeps asking when we can go back so that I can ride it with her too. My pregnant butt got to sit out all the fun rides, which was a bummer. In hindsight we should have made a plan for splitting up and then meeting back up after an hour or so, that way I could have gone trick or treating =)

It was so much fun to be back at our favorite place, but once was enough while 7 months pregnant. Aria was up until after midnight and slept in until 11 the next morning!!! Mom and dad were up until 330+ and also slept in until 11 the next morning. Praise the Lord. Aria was pretty dead to the world the next day, and ended up sleeping in until 10 the day after. She was tuckered out. I think the only thing we managed to do on the legit first day of October was open up a treat or two in her pumpkin pail - new salt water sandals and Little Blue Truck's Halloween book.

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
One of my must make recipes every Autumn is Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffins. You can find the recipe here! Aria and I made these to snack on while watching Casper. Great Grandma picked it up for her the other day, and it was one of my favorites as a kid. But, I did not remember the swearing this movie has! I was a bit surprised. Aria didn't bat an eye or repeat any of it, so I guess that works. 

I haven't managed to get my act together enough to take pictures of Aria's pumpkin treats in the mornings, but she got another pair of skeleton jammies and some Target dollar spot stretchy pumpkins and bats today.

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
After breakfast (we had muffins...surprise, surprise) we made boo-nanas! I cut the bananas in half and then sliced them in half again so that there was a flat surface. But, that just made the bananas fragile and they kept trying to fall apart on us while we covered them in chocolate. If we make them again I'd just cut the banana in half one time, flat surfaces are over-rated anyway. And then after all of our hard work Aria didn't even like them! I did. Frozen bananas and chocolate are delicious. Aria just ate off all the chocolate and called it done.  

Recipe: slice bananas in half > slide a popsicle stick in the center > freeze > melt chocolate > dip bananas > put eyes > freeze > eat

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
 Making pumpkin spice play dough was on my to do list last Halloween, but I never got around to it. I knew Aria would really enjoy playing with it though, so I whipped up a batch. And, I was right. She loves playing with it. I gave her a plastic knife and brought out the mini Halloween shaped cookie cutters for her to use.

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Also we had my favorite chili for dinner! I think my favorite thing about it is that I'm done with it by the afternoon so it has time to simmer on the stove and I don't have to worry about cooking dinner for the rest of the day.

Aria got Halloween orange and green tic tacs in her pumpkin this morning. Kid loves tic tacs.

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
I saved these...I guess you might call them ornaments...from last Halloween. I found them at Target last year, and haven't seen anything that looks even as remotely fun this year sadly. But, I pulled these out, peeled off sticker backs, and Aria went to town. Last year I guided her a bit more, so it was neat to see her do a good bit on her own. I told her she could decorate with them so she hung them on the mirror. Perfect spot!

This is also the outfit she found in her pumpkin pail this morning. That pumpkin face shirt is just about the softest thing ever. I kept telling Aria I just wanted to cuddle her all day! The skirt is a spider web design. She also got a pair of sneakers, but they were too small. The pumpkin pail is exchanging them for the next size up.

Sweet Turtle Soup - [Countdown to Halloween - 31 Days of Fall Fun Link Up Party]
Yesterday I failed as a co-host for the Foodie for a Year link up. The mission was a slow cooker recipe. I actually find slow cooker recipes very elusive. I love chicken taco chili in the slow cooker and my favorite holiday macaroni and cheese in the slow cooker. But, that is about it. I was trying to find a potato soup recipe that turned out well in the slow cooker, and I meant to make this one on Monday so that I could blog about it on Tuesday. I'll just blame the pregnancy brain on 100% forgetting about it and making chili (not in a slow cooker) instead.

Well, I made the potato soup on day four and while it is good, probably the best I've yet made in the slow cooker, it just doesn't pack the flavor punch...like it is missing some flavor that I can't put my finger on. I have so much better luck in a big ol' pot on the stove. sigh. I actually have another slow cooker recipe on my want to make list this month, a dessert this time!!!, so I'm hoping it turns out delicious. 

I think that was a pretty fun start to the month! Too bad there is a big bad hurricane heading this way. Keep your fingers crossed that we don't lose power. Because being without power and as a result being without air conditioning in Florida while 7 months pregnant really doesn't sound like a delight. Plus, it is Canadian Thanksgiving this weekend and having empty grocery stores is putting a cramp in my food buying.

Check out all the posts for Countdown to Halloween 2016 right here:

So, tell me what have you been up to so far this month? All festive and fun fall/Halloween things big and small welcome, link-up below. Don't forget you can also join in on the fun on instagram with #cdtohalloween16 as well. And, mark your calendars - the next link-up is on October 12th!


17 comments:

  1. You are killing October already!! I love everything you've done for far. Those ornaments are adorable and Aria looks like she's having a blast. Playdoh is so much fun. If only Emmy didn't change her mind on the color she wants every 30 seconds.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love that you guys really enjoy fall/Halloween to the fullest! You do so many great activities!

    ReplyDelete
  3. You rock! You make this holiday season so fun for Aria!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh my goodness! And I thought going to a Fall Festival was doing a lot hahaha! You're a super mom. I have yet to put any decorations and I'm at the point of let's just put up all of our Halloween stuff instead of Fall. The pumpkin with treats each morning is so cute, I wish I had thought of that. Crockpot recipes are the best, the chicken taco chili sounds amazing.

    ReplyDelete
  5. You rock October like nobody else friend. Kicking off with Disney... show off :P. It was the perfect way to start your month, for sure.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Mickey's Halloween Party!!! I can't think of a better way to kick off Halloween. The pumpkin pail seems to be extra plentiful this year. I think the problem with the slow cooker is sometimes it obliterates the spices. Sometimes I sautee the seasonings I want to use in a little oil and add them at the end and I think it's more flavorful that way. I feel like I've become a weather expert in the past few hours, tracking hurricane Matthew's path. Hoping it misses you guys entirely!

    ReplyDelete
  7. One day I will make it to Disney in the fall! It just seems like the greatest time to visit. Barnstormer was one of Mason’s favorite rides. We rode it 3 times in a row. Maybe four. You guys sure know how to do Octobers. I always love your Countdown to Halloween posts!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Yay for Disney! And that chili looks so good.

    ReplyDelete
  9. You always do this whole month so freaking well!
    Disney is the best way to start any holiday, or month, or day... We are sitting out Mickey's Not So Scary Party this year. I'm hoping we can get around to it next year.
    Those muffins - holy smokes, don't mind me as I drool right here at my computer. And eating the chocolate off the banana, sounds like something that would go down in this house.

    ReplyDelete
  10. You make my fall festivity game look so sad! Best mama award ever goes to you! Such a lucky lady you've got there! And soon to be gentleman as well!

    ReplyDelete
  11. As always you are KILLIN' it this October. Your love of Halloween is second to none.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am always so incredibly impressed with how awesome you do with holidays. Especially Halloween! I love all these ideas. I'm totally stealing the chili, muffins and boonanas ideas immediately! Drooling all over my keyboard.

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love that you have things planned for each day- I bet Aria does too :) Yay for making it back to MK! I can't believe you all were up that late! Those muffins look suuuper good. I have a few recipes I want to make with Reese, and I just added these to that list. That potato soup looks really good, even if it wasn't what you were after. Can't wait to see what you have next week!

    ReplyDelete
  14. I've heard Disney during Halloween is so amazing! Hoping to check it out sometime!

    ReplyDelete
  15. You always make Halloween and the whole month of October so fun!!! I love it. i never think of half the fun things you guys do. Plus I guess work puts a cramp in my style anyways for doing fun things everyday.
    Hoping the hurricane skips you so you can still have fun this weekend!

    ReplyDelete
  16. This all looks like so much fun! The chili looks delicious!

    ReplyDelete
  17. So, tell me more about the pumpkin pail- do you fill it every day or once a week? And do you have a story to go with it like who leaves the goodies? I need you to give me cool mom lessons.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment! I love them oh so much. I respond via email so please be sure to have your email linked. If not check back for responses via the thread.