Farm Birthday Party

It happened.

Farmhand JakeMy baby turned 2! I am still not sure how this is possible, but every day he is chatting incessantly and singing songs and creating new things and just delighting us. (What a big difference from what he was doing two years ago!)

For example, this morning, he wanted to play with play-doh, and as I was getting it out, he announced, “Don’t eat play-doh,” (which, as you may guess, is a rule for a reason…) and then proceeded to build a layered birthday cake with little straws for candles.

Yeah, the birthday event really made an impression on him!

Look, Sheep!This year, we went to a local farm park to celebrate Jake’s birthday with family and some of his friends. Frying Pan Farm Park has a working dairy farm, a collection of antique tractors and farm equipment, a ton of animals to check out (and, bonus, the pigs and goats recently had babies), as well as open spaces to run around, a carousel, and two sets of playground equipment. It’s the real deal for kids of any age!

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Oatmeal Energy Bites

Oatmeal Energy Bites

Does this ever happen to you?:

Some time in September—because you are planning ahead—you diligently buy two bags of candy to give out at Halloween. (Naturally, you buy the good kinds, the chocolate kinds you actually like, because last year only four children and one group of ridiculous teenagers came to your door…and if there’s going to be leftover candy, you at least want to enjoy it, right?)

You carefully shove the two small bags of candy to the back of the tallest shelf in the pantry, and then you studiously ignore them for three weeks.

Then…one night, you open the Reese’s, because you are stressed, or emotional, or peckish…and before you know it, you have to go buy two whole new bags of Halloween candy.

And, to make matters worse, now you have awoken your sweet tooth, and it wants more candy!

After several days of an insatiable desire for dessert, I decided it was time to make a dessert I wouldn’t feel guilty eating, one that would even do a little good while it quenched my desire for Reese’s cups: peanut butter oatmeal balls.

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French Onion Mac and Cheese

French Onion Mac and Cheese

The weather is finally cool. Every time I look out the window, I can see a light drizzle of leaves falling from the maple in my front yard.

It’s FALL!!

Which, of course, means it’s finally time for heartier, creamier food. It’s time for mac and cheese.

And what could be better than topping our platter of cheesy pasta with darkly caramelized onions and crunchy breadcrumbs? Nothing, I think.

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