Today we celebrated seven wonderful years with Audrey. We had spider donuts from Dunkin, spent the morning at the orchard, met friends at the zoo, and had the meal she requested for dinner (gnocchi in a cheese sauce). She is a joy and a delight. I’m so happy to be her mom.

Hiking Trip

This week the kids and I headed to NE Iowa to do some hiking.

We spent our first day at Pike’s Peak State Park (Yes, Zebulon Pike did name two peaks after himself). We looked out over the Mississippi and hiked to Bridal Veil Falls. After that we headed to Effigy Mounds National Monument where we took a hike, did some worksheets about the mounds, and the kids became Junior Rangers. It was an exhausting and fun day.

The next day we headed to Decorah. We had a late start due to rain (did I check the weather before our trip or pack rain gear? No.). We hiked at Dunning’s Springs to visit the ice cave and explore the falls. We had a great time wandering around the park before meeting up with a friend for coffee. My niece goes to school in Decorah, and we had a wonderful time going to a playground, yarn shop, and dinner. It was a wonderful day.

We hope to get out on more hiking trips this fall. I’m enjoying the kids being able to log some miles on the trails.

September Reads

I read five books in September. They were fine.

The Wonder Boy of Whistle Stop by Fannie Flag. If you want to read even more about Whistle Stop this book is for you. I found it adequate as a read. I give it three out of five stars.

How Dolly Parton Saved My Life by Charlotte Connors. I borrowed this from my mom because I LOVE Dolly Parton. I’ve been to Dollywood twice. So I started the book. It seemed familiar, but I wasn’t sure. So I kept reading. I kept reading even though I didn’t like the story or the characters. Eventually I finished the book even though by then I realized I had already read the book. My rating in goodreads gives this book three stars, but that must have been when I was reading only bad books or maybe I was recovering from my concussion. Don’t bother with this one. I give this book one out of five stars.

Knit One, Girl Two by Shira Glassman. I heard about this book on an episode of the Knitmore Girls. This is about an Indie Dyer who launches a collection inspired by a local artist, makes it big, and finds love. This is more of a novella than a novel, so if you are looking for an easy romance that takes less than an hour to read this fits the bill. I give this book two out of five stars.

The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood. Finally a good book. This adorable and predictable (in a good way) book is about a PhD candidate and a professor who pretend to be in a relationship. I don’t want to give away the ending, so that is all I will say. I give this book four out of five stars.

The Sweetest Remedy by Jane Igharo. A biracial woman, raised by her white mother, is invited to her father’s funeral in Kenya. His family only finds about her existence when she arrives. She meets her family, builds relationships, and finds herself. I really liked this book, and love this author. I give this book four out of five stars.

Have you read anything good lately?

Sweater Saturday

Elliot’s sweater is finished. He loves it. The pattern is Harvey by Vangy Knits. The yarn is Naturally Nazareth in the beach ball color. Elliot picked out the buttons, and was very clear about the order he wanted them put on. I think this will get a lot of wear.

He is very excited about his new sweater. He was sad when he grew out of the sweater I made him three years ago. I hope I can continue to make him red Harvey’s until he is an adult.