Wednesday, September 29, 2021

Easy S’mores Fudgesicles

*This post contains affiliate links.  As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

S’mores will always remind me of fall… there’s nothing like roasting marshmallows by an outdoor fire when it’s chilly outside!  Here in the south, however, it doesn’t always get chilly enough for a fire early in the season, so sometimes, we have to improvise and make cold treats instead of hot ones. 

The kids and I made these S’mores Fudgesicles forever ago and I completely forgot to share them on the blog, so this post is long overdue.  Of all of the homemade popsicles we’ve made, these were, by far, everyone’s favorite.  They’re rich and creamy, and oh so easy to make.

Use It

Popsicle Molds

Popsicle Sticks


Buy It

1 package Instant Chocolate Pudding Mix

1/2 cup White Sugar

3 cups Milk

Mini Chocolate Chips

Mini Marshmallows

1/2 cup crushed Graham Crackers


Make It

1.    Combine pudding mix, sugar, and milk.

2.    Stir in a handful of mini chocolate chips.

3.    Stir in a handful of mini marshmallows.

4.    Pour mixture in popsicle molds.

5.    Sprinkle graham cracker crumbs into each mold.

6.    Put cover over popsicle molds.

7.    Place wooden popsicle sticks in each slit in the lid.

8.    Freeze for 3 hours.


If you have any trouble getting the popsicles out of the molds, just run each mold under hot water for a few seconds and they’ll slide right out. 

These only took just a few minutes to make (aside from freezing time), and they were soooo delicious.  They make for a perfect summer treat, or an early fall treat before it gets too cold.  

Be sure to tag me on social media if you make them!

*We started with this recipe and changed it to make it our own.

*Linking up with Slices of Life for Encouraging Hearts and Home.

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Our Week - The One with Pumpkins at Callaway, Spirit Halloween, and Momma’s Birthday

This past weekend was wonderful, y’all, and I’m excited to recap it all today.  It’s going to be a long one, so settle in with your cup of coffee or your glass of wine (depending on what time you’re reading).  ;o)  Here we go!

Monday, September 20

Monday morning was yet another rainy day.  It poured all the way to school, and as always when it rains, there was an accident on the highway, so we had to go a roundabout way to school.  After the kids were safely dropped off, I headed to Publix to pick up groceries for the next two weeks.  The rest of the morning was spent in my office working and doing laundry.  We’re still having major issues with our dryer as it’s literally tearing up our clothes, so the drying process was lengthy as I hung up most items to dry so they didn’t get damaged. 

I had an appointment with my therapist after lunch Monday afternoon, but we had to meet over the phone this time because she was sick with a bad cold… thankfully, not Covid.  Meeting over the phone or via Zoom just isn’t the same, though… I always get way more out of my appointments when I see her in person. 

By the time my appointment was over, it was time to pick up the kids from school and head straight to dance.  Once Olivia was inside, I drove Jacob home so he could get started on homework, and I finished putting up the groceries and prepping for Tuesday.  Once all of that was done, I drove back to dance and finished Malibu Rising in the car while Olivia’s class finished. 

Meanwhile, the skies finally cleared up and the sun came out, but the baseball fields were still underwater from all of the rain we’ve had, and Jacob’s baseball game ended up being canceled again.  Boooo.  We’d already planned to get takeout for dinner since we were supposed to have had dance and baseball back-to-back, so we just decided to go ahead and proceed with takeout.  Jacob asked for Panera, so Olivia and I picked it up on the way home from dance, and then we all ate together.

After dinner, the four of us plus Maui all headed out for an evening walk since the rain had stopped.  We all did a mile together, and then when they all headed home to shower and get ready for bed, I continued my walk for a couple more miles.  The weather was just glorious – cool and breezy – and I was treated to a gorgeous sunset as I walked. 

When I got back home, the kids were nearly ready for bed, so I grabbed a quick shower and got into my PJs before tucking them in for the night.  B and I then finished up Trying, season two before heading off to bed ourselves.  Trying has been renewed for a season three and is expected to come out sometime in 2022 and I’m so glad.  That show has so much heart, it’s funny, and it gets better as the episodes progress. 

Tuesday, September 21

Tuesday morning, I got the kids dropped at school and then I spent the whole day working, paying bills, catching up on some things, and doing laundry.  B was able to wedge a cotton ball in the spot in the dryer where our clothes were getting ripped and drying went smoothly for the rest of the day.  It fell out later in the week and started snagging our clothes again, though, so we’re back at square one now.  Sigh.

After school on Tuesday, Olivia and I dropped Jacob at home, and she got some homework done before she and I headed back out for dance.  She only has Lyrical class on Tuesday so it’s just 45 minutes.  While she was in there, I stalked the news for updates on the Gabby Petito case.  I rarely get invested in missing persons cases like these (I think the last one I was really invested in was the Natalee Holloway case in 2005 so that goes to show how little I do), but for some reason, I just haven’t been able to look away from this case.

Maybe it’s because she was a blogger like me?  Maybe it’s because of the crazy way her boyfriend has been acting since then?  Not to mention it’s been riveting watching all of these TikTok-ers and Instagrammers doing all of their digging that ultimately helped police locate her body. 

But anyway, if you’re interested in following along and seeing all of the insane details that have been unfolding that mainstream media hasn’t been reporting, follow @houseinhabit on Instagram.  She has two story highlights full of info and theories, and she posts about it constantly.  I’ve been stalking her IG account since I found her a few days ago and I just can’t stop.  I pray that the boyfriend is located soon and that he cooperates with police so her parents can get the closure that they deserve.  I just can’t even imagine being in that situation.

After dance, Olivia and I headed home, and as we walked in the door, B was walking out to go to tennis.  The kids played outside while I cooked a quick dinner, and then the three of us sat down together to eat.  Just as we were sitting down, I got a text from B that it was pouring down rain and he was headed back home early from tennis. 

It never rained at home, so after dinner, the four of us played out in the back yard.  While we were out there, the skies looked absolutely crazy!  We had rain clouds, a rainbow, dark stormy clouds, blue skies, white puffy clouds, and sunshine all in the same sky.  Everywhere you turned it was like looking at a completely different day.  

This was one side of the sky...

And this was the other...

After outdoor time, the kids headed inside to shower, and I worked out.  Once Olivia was out, she and I read some books together… ‘tis the season for our favorite Halloween books!

After the kiddos were tucked in, B and I grabbed a bowl of Peppermint Stick ice cream because, yes, Publix already has their Christmas flavors out!!  I would have preferred Pumpkin Pie ice cream since it’s fall, but they didn’t have their fall flavors available.  Apparently, they just skipped right to Christmas! 

While we enjoyed our ice cream, we watched the first episode of that new show Ordinary Joe.  It’s on NBC this season, so it’s network television.  We don’t watch a whole lot of network TV anymore, but this one has an intriguing storyline, so we’re going to give it a try!  I thought the pilot episode was interesting – it definitely held my attention – but the acting was a little cheesy at times, so we shall see if we stick with it!

Wednesday, September 22

Wednesday morning, I dropped the kids and headed home to work all day.  We are heading to the mountains in a couple of weeks, so I’ve been trying to get way ahead on blog content so I can knock out the posts for that week.  I don’t work when we vacation, but I also don’t like to have radio silence here on the blog either, so I always cram enough in to keep things rolling until I return.

All throughout the day Wednesday, the temperatures dropped from the cold front coming in, so the weather was glorious once the last of the rain blew through.  We had nowhere to be Wednesday evening, so the kids played outside while I cooked dinner, and then afterward, the four of us went for a long walk around our neighborhood.  Pretty soon it’ll start getting dark at 6 and we won’t be able to do our after-dinner walks, so we’re trying to squeeze in as many as we can now. 

B, the kids, and Maui all headed home so the kiddos could get ready for bed after the walk, but I kept on going and ended up making it almost five miles before it got too dark to continue.  Walking solo in the evening with my music blasting is one of my favorite things and I always feel great when I get done. 

After showers, the kids spent some time looking through a search and find book, and then after we got them in the bed, B and I started Click Bait.  Y’all!!!!  SOOOO good.  We even stayed up a little later than usual to finish the second episode because we couldn’t stop! 

Thursday, September 23

Thursday morning, we woke up to sunny skies and 54 degrees!  Yes, ma’am!!  I threw on some jeans, a tank, and a cardigan, got the kids to school, and then set out to run a few errands.  I had to return something at Walmart and pick up a few things, then I dropped off a couple of books at the library, and then I stopped by Target to grab some Luna bars that the kids love that Walmart doesn’t carry.  While I was at Target, I just couldn’t help myself, and I finally got my first pumpkin spice latte of the season!  It was the perfect day to grab one!

The rest of the day was spent getting work done at home, tying up some loose ends around the house, and making a couple of new bracelets, and then at 3 I grabbed the kids from school.  Jacob had a baseball game at 7, and they were finally able to play after nearly two weeks of no games, so we headed to the ball field after dinner, and spent the rest of the evening there.

The weather was AMAZING – sunny and dry and soooo chilly – and it was just perfect.  All of the grandparents joined us again, and we had a great time chatting and cheering on the team.  Jacob didn’t have a great batting record for this game – he got a hit and was thrown out at first on his first at-bat and he struck out for his third at-bat, but he was walked for his second at-bat and he ended up scoring a run… and that run was part of a grand slam! 

Yep, one of his teammates hit a grand slam Thursday night!!  I think that’s the first time that has ever happened on one of our teams.  We ended up winning 14-3, and they called the game early because of the mercy rule.  Jacob’s team is looking great this season, and I’m hoping they’ll have a winning record.

Friday, September 24

Friday morning after I dropped the kids, I stopped by a different Publix than my usual one to pick up some things that our Publix doesn’t carry.  The one nearest our house is the smallest one in town, and therefore, they don’t have nearly as much shelf-space as some of the other locations, so I’ve started going to the one down the street from the kids’ school every now and then to grab the few things that we can’t get at ours.

After that, I put some gas in the car, and then I headed home and worked for the rest of the morning.  As I type this, I’m over a week ahead blogging and it feels so good!  I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts, because when we get back from our trip next week, I’ll be behind again.  Haha.

I picked up the kids from school at 3 as usual, and then we headed home to get changed and packed so we could head out for a SUPER fun evening with friends!  B got off of work early, and then we hit the road for Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, GA.  It’s the same place that we go to every year at Christmastime for their Fantasy in Lights display.  It’s a bit of a haul from where we live, but it’s worth the drive every single time.

This year, they debuted their brand-new fall-themed event, Pumpkins at Callaway, and we knew we had to go since they do such a fabulous job at Christmas.  The entire event is outdoors, so we felt comfortable attending, and we felt safe the whole night while we were there. 

We arrived late in the afternoon before it got too busy, and we were able to roam around freely for a couple of hours before it got too packed.  We met my friend, Jeannine and her family to celebrate their little one’s birthday, and our friend, Khristina, and her son came, too.  It was sunny, not a cloud in the sky, cool, and there was no humidity… we could not have asked for better weather.  It truly felt like fall.

When we first got there, we roamed around to look at all of the displays – there were pumpkins everywhere – along with giant cornucopias and woodland creatures and other things made out of sticks and hay.  There were so many different picture-taking spots… it was a blogger/influencer wonderland!  Haha.

After looking around for a bit, we let the kids play on the playground by the lake… they were all dying to run around after the car ride there.  Aside from the kids playing on the school playground one evening at the back-to-school social a few weeks ago, I think this was the first time I’ve been with Olivia while she played on the playground since she broke her elbow earlier this year.  I swear, I still have PTSD from that.  My anxiety was just beyond the whole time she was playing.  I don’t think playground time will ever be fun again for me.  Ugh. 

After the playground, we headed inside the big circus tent (the only indoor portion of the event) to see what they had to offer there.  There were people inside selling their fall crafts and décor, a big stage set up for Spookley the Square Pumpkin, lots of Halloween kids’ toys/souvenirs, and a giant fall coloring page on one of the walls that the kids could color. 

After they had their fill of coloring, we headed back outside to walk the trail of lights through the forest.  It was still sunny at that point, but we wanted to scope it out in the daylight, so we’d know what to expect after dark.  The trail was absolutely awesome – there were thousands of lights, hundreds of intricately carved pumpkins, massive mechanical bugs that moved, and so many other things to see.

Where the trail came out, there was a massive open space with strobe lights and a DJ booth, and they had a dance party going on there the whole entire evening/night.  There were massive blowup pumpkins along one side of the perimeter and food trucks along another side of the perimeter and it was the place to be later in the night. 

The kids danced for a few minutes, and then we headed over to let them all play mini golf.  The golf course, clubs, and balls were all painted in neon paint, and they had blacklights hanging all throughout the course, and after dark, the whole course glowed in the dark.  So, so cool. 

The sun was just starting to dip behind the trees when we played, so it was still daylight, but we wanted to play before the course got too crowded.  Several Callaway employees had dressed up in various costumes, and they were running around the golf course talking to everyone and dancing, and they all sang happy birthday to Jeannine’s littlest after they found out we were there to celebrate him.  It was so cute.  The kids had the best time playing, and several of our kiddos got holes-in-one, too – Jacob and Olivia included!

After mini golf was done, we headed back to the tent for the pie eating contest.  Two of the kids in our group were selected for the contest, and it was a hoot to watch them eat their “pies” with no hands.  The pies were just whip cream, but they took their jobs very seriously.  ;o)

After the pie eating contest, the kids had their picture taken with Spookley, the Square Pumpkin, and then we headed back outside to the dance party.

Jeannine stayed with all of the kids while the rest of the adults headed to the food trucks to grab dinner for everyone.  She snapped a few pictures while we were gone.

Brian, Khristina, James, and I were able to find a table large enough to seat our party together, and the table was in this little courtyard under a ton of twinkle lights, so you know that made me happy.  :o)  Jeannine had brought all kinds of festive snacks for the kids – Cheetos Bag O’ Bones, Halloween Oreos, and sour gummy pumpkins – and they ate those with their food truck corn dogs. 

After dinner, we all wandered over to the beach area on the big lake to see the big chair and the humongous pumpkin display… seriously, it was huge!  I’m guessing it was probably three or four stories tall.  They had Halloween music piped in all over the place all night long, and the pumpkins in the big tower sang along to some of the songs.  So, so fun!!

After we watched the pumpkins sing for a bit, we finally got in line for the main nighttime event – the tunnel of lights and the pumpkin forest (that we’d walked through earlier in the evening).  Earlier in the evening, there had been no line, but as the night progressed, more and more people started showing up.  Fortunately, the line moved superfast, so it wasn’t a big deal.  The tunnel of lights changed colors and the lights flickered and danced and the kids loved every second. 

Just after we exited the tunnel, we passed by mini golf again which was all aglow (SO cool), and then we headed into the woods to walk the trail in the dark.  With the thousands of lights, hundreds of pumpkins all aglow, and the chill in the air, it was just a magical walk.  The kids were excited about every little thing, and we all enjoyed it so much. 

We exited the forest at the dance party again, and the kids danced their little booties off for the rest of the night.  We did head into the tent one more time to try to join the dance competition, but they were just finishing up as we arrived.  A little after 9, we finally told the kids it was time to go, and they still weren’t ready to leave… little party animals!  Haha. 

We slowly made our way to the car and said goodbye to our friends, and then we hit the road for home.  All of us were just so very grateful for some (safe) normalcy after not being able to do much last fall.  This was, by far, was one of my very favorite evenings of this entire year!

We got home laaaate, got the kids right into bed, and then B and I decided to YOLO and stay up way later than normal for a Friday night.  I had to watch the new episode of Ted Lasso, and I also wanted to finish up the episode of Clickbait that we’d started because I just can’t quit it, y’all!

B and I finally turned the lights out at, like, 12:45 AM or something crazy (LOLing because we used to stay up until 2 or 3 AM before having kids), and I think I fell asleep just seconds after my head hit the pillow. 

Saturday, September 25

Saturday morning, we rolled out of bed around 8, and B left to go pick up donuts.  Krispy Kreme has been releasing their new fall flavors week-by-week, and last week was maple glazed and maple cake.  The maple cake were absolutely delicious.  And, of course, we grabbed a couple of pumpkin spice cake donuts, too.  ;o) 

After breakfast, we spent an hour and a half lounging around on the couch and watching ESPN College GameDay.  I felt so guilty leaving Maui for so long on Friday night since we rarely leave her at all anymore, so I wanted to give her some extra snuggles to make up for it.  I spent the time going through pictures from the night before and uploading them to Facebook and Instagram. 

I finally got off my butt around 11 to do a cardio workout, and it turned out to be one of my best ones yet.  So many calories burned!  By the time I’d finished, the Georgia game was starting, so I made some grilled cheese sandwiches and we ate and watched the game outside since it was so nice out. 

We spent the whole afternoon out there, and then when the game was over, I headed in to shower and spend some time in my office while B mowed and the kids played video games. 

B headed out to pick up pizza for dinner around 6, and then afterward, we started the new season of Survivor with the kiddos.  B and I watched Survivor from, like, 2003ish to 2015ish, and then gave it up because it was just so repetitive, but we thought we might pick it back up and watch it with the kids now that they’re older.  They’re totally into stuff like that, and they both really enjoyed it. 

Afterward, we watched one episode of Walk the Prank since we hadn’t watched one of those in forever, and then the kids went to bed.  B and I watched the newest episode of The Morning Show, and then we watched another Clickbait after that.  Can’t stop, won’t stop.

Sunday, September 26

Sunday morning, we had the remaining donuts from our dozen while we watched church, and I got my planner ready for October as well as the week ahead.  After all of that was done, I squeezed in a quick workout, and then we all got ready for the day.

My mother-in-law and step-father-in-law didn’t cook lunch Sunday, so we decided to go out to lunch since the weather was finally nice enough to eat outside.  We ended up at the Mexican place near our neighborhood since the building has garage doors that open fully to the outside.  The restaurant opened just before the pandemic started, and I was actually able to eat there with my girlfriends just before everything shut down, but B and the kids had never been.

We ordered a round of margs along with some salsa, queso, and salsa verde, and all of our main dishes were fresh and delicious.  The weather was perfect yet again, and it was just the best little lunch with my people.  That’s probably only the third or fourth time we’ve been out to eat with the kids here in town since the pandemic started (craziness), and it felt good to be able to have another little nugget of normalcy while also being safe.


After lunch, we drove over to the Spirit Halloween store to let the kids look at costumes.  They both decided on their costumes for the year, so we went ahead and grabbed them.  Check!  Both of them opted for creepy instead of cute this year for the first time ever, and that was just another reminder that they’re growing up so quickly.  :o(

We headed home after that, and I threw dinner in the Crockpot.  Once that was done, I spent a little bit of time in my office, prepped everything for Monday, and then went back downstairs to prep for Sunday dinner. 

My momma’s birthday was Friday, so we had my parents over along with my brother, my Mama Cass, and my Uncle Billy.  I made beef stroganoff, roasted veggies, and bread, and then after dinner, we celebrated Momma with a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, topped with chocolate chips.  Yes, ma’am!!

It was just the best weekend, and we’re heading into Monday feeling grateful and ready to roll!

And now for a few current things…

Currently Reading


In September, I read Soulmate Equation by Christina Lauren and Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reed.


Soulmate Equation was a quick and easy read, and the characters were all really lovable.  I thought the storyline was unique and fun even though the end is a little predictable.  The authors do a great job of making you feel the chemistry between the main character and her love interest, and it was overall a fun read… perfect for the beach or the pool!


Malibu Rising was a little heavier than Soulmate Equation.  While I wouldn’t necessarily call it a page-turner, I did find myself reaching for it any time I had a few minutes to spare, and I enjoyed it overall.  I will say this, though… I thought that the character development wasn’t quite as robust as it should have been, and I had trouble remembering who was who throughout most of the book… especially when a bunch of random new characters were unnecessarily introduced in the second half.  The book also spans about five decades and it skips around constantly from year to year, so that made it even harder to follow.  All of that said, I did end up “getting it” when all was said and done, and I did enjoy it much more than I enjoyed Daisy Jones by the same author.


Currently Watching


With B:  This month, B and I continued Ted Lasso and The Morning Show, and we started and finished Trying.  We also started all of our network television – that new show Ordinary Joe and A Million Little Things, and we started Clickbait on Netflix.  So freaking good!!!!


With the Kids:  We also finished Lego Masters and America’s Got Talent with the kids, we continued Walk the Prank, and we started Survivor.  We still need to finish The Mighty Ducks: Game Changers and The Mysterious Benedict Society, as well… we didn’t watch either of those at all in September. 


Alone:  I finished the entire series of Friends again while I work in my office, aaaand I started it right back over at season one, episode one as soon as the series finale ended.  #NoShame.  Oh, and I’m still watching The Wedding Planner on repeat when I’m not watching Friends.  #NoShameForReal


Currently Listening To


Gosh, I’ve been listening to so many different things this past month!  This time of year, I typically listen to nothing but old standards, but this month, I’ve also been in the mood for some of my old late 90’s/early 2000’s stuff – NSYNC, Backstreet Boys, Brian McKnight, Shai, 112, Jagged Edge, Usher, LSG, 98 Degrees, etc.  I’ve been listening to that most evenings when I walk or run. 

Towards the end of the month, we also started listening to our Halloween playlist… ‘tis the season!!  I just downloaded some new songs to add to it, and I’m going to gradually add to it as I come up with new ideas.  If you have any good suggestions for Halloween songs, let me know! 


I’m also still listening to The Bestie Breakdown with Shay and Erika podcast, and as always, my favorite morning show – Elvis Duran.

Happy Tuesday, y’all!