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Holland Fall BreakIMG_20191015_090007

Snapshots of Michigan: Apple Picking + Sand Dunes

Michigan Fall Break So another Chino fall break highlight was heading to Michigan for our first time ever. (Check another state off of your list Simon!) We drove over on Saturday morning and after a quick picnic lunch (from Blackberry Market, of course), we went exploring. We hiked several trails where the forest floor turned …

Germany in the Fall, Deutschland in Autumn, Tübingen

Snapshots of Germany in the Fall

Walking through Autumn in Southern Germany (Baden-Württemberg) Y’all, the autumn was so beautiful in the little town we lived in last year. In the morning, you would walk to town and the hills would have a Scotland-like mist over them, but the afternoons were usually gorgeous blue skies and incredible color. I walked in the …

Aberdeen Beach, Scotland, Chasing Daylight

Chasing Daylight November: Aberdeen Beach Days

November arrived in Aberdeen all golden and glowing, but today at its close, it is icy and crisp. I’ve stomped through lots of wet leaves this month, but today the leaves are frozen and crunching beneath my boots. I’ve driven down to Aberdeen Beach in all sorts of weather this month to wander along the North …

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Snapshots of Scotland in Fall

Hello Beautiful Scotland in Fall! The colors of the leaves right now are my consolation for 4:30 sunsets. They are AH-MAH-ZING. Every time I go outside, I take about fifty pictures of trees and leaves. So here are my twenty highlights from the last ten days or so. A spot discovered near Aviemore while visiting Cole …

Lake District, England, United Kingdom, Cumbria

Hiking in England: Lake District

 [pe2-image src=”http://lh4.ggpht.com/-Ia-mThc5L7g/UpRzW0JsSLI/AAAAAAAAEf8/7nG75HcOK0w/s144-c-o/IMG_3025.JPG” href=”https://picasaweb.google.com/100212479652479288017/LakeDistrictHikingTrails#5950507843456878770″ caption=”Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset” type=”image” alt=”IMG_3025.JPG” pe2_single_image_size=”w559″ pe2_single_video_size=”w559″ ] Family Hiking in the Lake District While we were in the Lake District, we did five different walks together as a family. All of our walks were fairly “lightweight” compared to what many of the other hillwalkers we met were doing, …

Chino House Camping Checklist, Download at AlisonChino.com

Chino House Camping Checklist

I hope you are getting to see the leaves change where you live, because it is one of creation’s most spectacular displays. Every year I am newly amazed. How can the death of something be so beautiful? Of course, one of the very best ways to enjoy fall color is to go camping. And while …

Thanksgiving Menu

Thanksgiving is my very most favorite holiday. To me, it is full of everything a holiday should be. Quiet, gratefulness, stores closed and homes open, family, friends, cold weather, kids piled in spare rooms and basements, couches full to busting, and of course, food. Lots of it. A beautiful table, prepared by hands that have …

fall instagram, pumpkin, breakfast breads, pumpkins, brunch, snacks

Pumpkin Bread

Fall is in the air and I am loving all things pumpkin! I have an affinity for pumpkin recipes that call for an entire can of pumpkin.  They appeal to my practical side.  I don’t love to save a part of a can of pumpkin puree for some undetermined use, one that usually requires that …

Banff Hiking Trails: Johnston Canyon

Johnston Canyon Banff Hiking Trails On our second of hiking in Banff, we hit the most popular trail in the area. Johnston Canyon is an amazing trail, complete with paved, elevated level pathways that are almost stroller accessible.  Lucky for us, we are now stroller (and even baby backpack) free.  I am loving these days …

Banff Hiking Trails: C Level Cirque

Banff Hiking Trails: C Level Cirque Our first hike in Banff was roughly five miles, with some pretty decent elevation gain.  We had a beautiful view of Lake Minnewanka through the trees.  We hiked around old mining shafts.  We climbed boulders and chased pikas under rocks.  We picnicked at the bottom of a great rock …

Snapshots of Banff Fall Color

We are spending our Fall Break in the Canadian Rockies, and the Banff Fall Color is absolutely stunning. The trees are a sparkling gold instead of just yellow. Against the pine trees and the blue sky, the color shines so bright.  As we are hiking through this part of the Canadian Rockies this week, we …

Taos Ski Valley

I’ve said before that we love the mountains. We love to be in the mountains.  We love to hike and bike in the summer.  We love to ski in the winter. Snow skiing tends to be a little (or a lot) hard on the pocketbook, but it was a huge part of both mine and …

Crunchy Pumpkin Muffins

Again with the pumpkin? Yes. It’s rainy and cold and my coffeemaker had an early morning meeting, so I might be swinging through Starbucks for a Pumpkin Spice Latte on my way to storytime this morning to go with my muffin. I make a plain pumpkin muffin for my kids that they love, but this …

mulligatawny, curry, curried soups, soup with chicken, yummy soup, dinner on a cold night, pretty soup picture

Mulligatawny

A couple of weeks ago, Taido and I went to Boulevard Bread Company for lunch and we had the best Mulligatawny I’ve ever tasted. We were leaving for camp that day so I filed it away in my head that I definitely needed to find a recipe for this delectable soup. I need a new …

missouri camping, autumn, fall leaves, fall camping, missouri state parks, camping with kids

Missouri Camping

This week, Simon and I got to escape to Missouri for a couple of nights camping with my dad, my sister and her kids. Anna’s kids were out of school Monday and Tuesday, so we all left on Sunday and met about halfway between here and Chicago at St. Francois State Park. We’ve only camped …

Fall Castle Bluff Camps

One of the events that marks our autumn season every year are our middle and high school Fall Castle Bluff camps at church. So much of what happens in our youth programs at church pours out of these events and they take an enormous amount of support to pull off. Taido and Bobby and their …