Halloween Is Different As A Parent

Halloween Is Different As A Parent

And why it's so much more than candy and costumes.
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Growing up, Halloween was one of the most exciting holidays. Besides Christmas and birthdays, Halloween was on the countdown calendar. Food, candy and costumes, what more could a child want? Today Halloween means so much more. Maybe it has always meant so much more, but until this year I never knew what Halloween could entail.

This year we have gone to two different pumpkin patches, Cedarwood Pumpkin Patch in McMinnville, Tennessee and Lucky Ladd Farms in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Cedarwood is pretty amazing and has so much to do for children and adults alike. There is a bounce pad, corn maze, hay maze, and of course a ton of pumpkins. While it is a drive nearly an hour from Murfreesboro, it is definitely worth it. If you plan on going there, dedicate several hours to it in order to get the most out of it. Check their website for hours and pricing. Lucky Ladd farms is a bit smaller, 40 acres smaller, but still has a lot to offer adults and children. The farm has several mega slides, a corn maze, a whole play area for toddlers, and tractor rides. I would suggest this one for parents with small children only because it is a bit smaller and a bit easier to navigate. The farm could be done in a matter of two or three hours depending on how fast you want to get through it. Check their website out for hours and pricing.

We have also gone to two different Halloween bashes and have more to go to. As mentioned in plenty of my previous articles, we are a one income family, so cheap or free is always welcome in our house. One we went to was Middle Tennessee State University’s Alpha Delta Pi Trunk or Treat on campus. This was a first for us and I was really pleased. I was only expecting a few cars to hand out candy, but instead was greeted by over a dozen cars. There were also several bounce houses, slides and a rock climbing wall for the little ones. Oh, did I mention it was free?! We were there for nearly two hours and walked away with exhausted little girls and two buckets full of candy. We also attended a boo bash with our mom group and had a blast! It’s always nice having adult interaction while kids have friends to play with.

One Halloween bash I am so sad we are missing is World Outreach Church’s Hoedown. Everyone has been telling me how awesome it is and I’ve been seeing little snippets here and there from previous years. Due to time constraints this year, we will not be able to make it, but I can’t wait to see the pictures uploaded later this week. In previous years they have had a petting zoo, tons of candy and several bounce houses. And of course with it being at a church, it’s all clean fun. A lot of people attend, so be prepared for lines.

Halloween is more than candy and costumes to me now that I’m a parent. It’s creating memories with my children. They didn’t have to go to two different pumpkin patches or two different Halloween bashes. They didn’t have to get costumes or have plans to go trick or treating tonight. But I have been thanked many times over these past two weeks. I have had more hugs and kisses than I can remember. On top of all of that, I have created so many memories with them that are going to last a lifetime. Maybe that’s what it has always been about and I just never noticed. Maybe that’s why my parents always made sure one of them took me trick or treating. Maybe that’s why there are so many Hallmark Holidays. Or maybe I’m just being a sappy momma. Happy Halloween.

Cover Image Credit: Tiffany Rawlin

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I Blame My Dad For My High Expectations

Dad, it's all your fault.
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I always tell my dad that no matter who I date, he's always my number one guy. Sometimes I say it as more of a routine thing. However, the meaning behind it is all too real. For as long as I can remember my dad has been my one true love, and it's going to be hard to find someone who can top him.

My dad loves me when I am difficult. He knows how to keep the perfect distance on the days when I'm in a mood, how to hold me on the days that are tough, and how to stand by me on the days that are good.

He listens to me rant for hours over people, my days at school, or the episode of 'Grey's Anatomy' I watched that night and never once loses interest.

He picks on me about my hair, outfit, shoes, and everything else after spending hours to get ready only to end by telling me, “You look good." And I know he means it.

He holds the door for me, carries my bags for me, and always buys my food. He goes out of his way to make me smile when he sees that I'm upset. He calls me randomly during the day to see how I'm doing and how my day is going and drops everything to answer the phone when I call.

When it comes to other people, my dad has a heart of gold. He will do anything for anyone, even his worst enemy. He will smile at strangers and compliment people he barely knows. He will strike up a conversation with anyone, even if it means going way out of his way, and he will always put himself last.

My dad also knows when to give tough love. He knows how to make me respect him without having to ask for it or enforce it. He knows how to make me want to be a better person just to make him proud. He has molded me into who I am today without ever pushing me too hard. He knew the exact times I needed to be reminded who I was.

Dad, you have my respect, trust, but most of all my heart. You have impacted my life most of all, and for that, I can never repay you. Without you, I wouldn't know what I to look for when I finally begin to search for who I want to spend the rest of my life with, but it might take some time to find someone who measures up to you.

To my future husband, I'm sorry. You have some huge shoes to fill, and most of all, I hope you can cook.

Cover Image Credit: Logan Photography

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Why Spring Time Is The Best Time Of The Year

With the first day of spring right around the corner, here are some reasons why spring is the best time of year!

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If you are like me, you know that seasonal depression is real. I'm happiest when the weather is nice and I can explore what nature has to offer. I look to spring every year, because I know there is more to do and the extra hours of daylight makes for additional time to do my favorite things. I love to run outside, travel to nearby parks and outdoor attractions, and just enjoy the beauty and nostalgia of the outdoors.

Spring is a great time to get back in shape. There are a variety of fresh fruits and veggies that you can get at any local farmers market or grocery store to spice up your diet in the spring. Also, the gym can be monotonous after a long winter, so the start of spring brings a breath of fresh air for many outdoor fitness activities. Go for a walk or run done local trails or paths, do yoga outside, or even go go biking, hiking, or kayaking. The spring offers so many cool opportunities to become healthier.

Spring always reminds me of Easter time and Easter always makes me think of quality time spent with friends and family. Plus, I always think of baby animals and flowers blooming, two things that bring everyone joy. If you get a chance you have to visit the cherry blossom trees in Washington D.C., it is such a beautiful site. Furthermore, one of my favorite things is that first really sunny, warm day in the spring when you can open all the windows in your house and savor the start of spring.

The springtime also means that summer break is closer. After a long 8 or 9 months of school, the thought of a nice 3 month break is refreshing. Start planning your summer job, internship, or whatever you want to get into this summer, to give you some motivation to finish the semester strong.

Spring has so much to offer so prepare for the rainy days of April and the sunny days, full of flowers in May, and everything in between!

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