Hello Friends! I hope you had a wonderful spring weekend. We were so lucky to have beautiful weather and took advantage of the time outside!
Ben had a baseball game Friday night, and it was precious, as always. Those little boys, in their sweet little uniforms, are just the cutest thing ever. I like how our league does it- they pitch once to the boys and if it doesn’t result in a hit (99% of the time it doesn’t), they let them hit off the tee. The boys fielding the ball don’t try to get an out, they just run the ball to the pitcher’s mound and call time. Each team gets to bat twice, and then the game is over. Easy! No scoring, no outs (which initially I was a little so-so about), but it makes for a quick and easy game (for the kids AND the parents), and the boys have a ball. It is amazing how much Ben has improved just since the first practice! He WANTS. THAT. BALL. every time it’s hit, and maaaaaay dive after every single grounder that hits the infield. He and Scott throw in the yard almost every day, and seeing them bond through sports is pretty much a dream come true all around. Plus, the ballfield has two great playgrounds so Brantley and Gracie get to play while Ben plays ball! So Friday nights at the ballfield are a great time for the family all around.
Brantley and Gracie both had their first soccer games of the year on Saturday morning (8:30 pictures UUUGGHHH). But it was such a beautiful morning and perfect weather to be outside! Both girls did so great. Gracie cried through her first few soccer sessions last year, but ran after that ball like a veteran on Saturday. Every so often, she’d make eye contact with me, and give me that half-hidden smile, and we knew she was having fun. She even told me last night that when she grows up, she wants to be a pro soccer player and a vet. 🙂
And I couldn’t have been prouder of our Brantley girl. She has gotten faster, and she has gotten smarter on the field. This is her third year playing, and she loves it! She loves playing defense and is not afraid to get in the cluster and kick that ball away from their goal. She is getting more assertive, and she wears it well. I love that she can find her confidence through her athletic abilities. She’s little, but she’s tough!
After soccer, we headed home and the kids played outside for houuuuurrrs, it seemed. Scott and I watched a movie, and I sewed up a few fun spring things (more about that so soon!). We grilled steaks for dinner, and it was a great Saturday. These kids played together all day, and all I could think was how blessed we are to have three beautiful and healthy children that love each other so much. Please tell me it will always be like this.
Sunday morning, I woke up early because Ben was crying about his ears hurting. Essential oils to the rescue, and all was well! Scott and I drank coffee in bed and watched some old episodes of The Office before we got ready for the church. We opened the windows, and let the cool spring breeze through the screens, and it was just one of those mornings you wish would last all day. After church, the kids played outside some more, I got some laundry done, we played Connect Four at the kitchen table, we all watched Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, and everyone was so happy and content.
I truly wanted to carefully package up this weekend in pretty paper and hide it in my closet for a day when I’m feeling blue. It was smiles and laughter, games and good food, sunshine and warm breezes, love and family. For us, it was a perfectly restorative weekend all together- relaxing, enjoying, and embracing this beautiful season of our lives.
We are really enjoying eating fish at least once a week now. Usually, I just saute it with a bit of Cajun seasoning but am excited to try it in a taco rice bowl this week. We had the black bean soup last night, and it was SO good. A note on the recipe, though, if you plan to make it- After 25 minutes in the instant pot and a 15 minute natural pressure release, the beans were still underdone (you make it with dried black beans). I closed the pot back up and put it on manual high pressure for another 10 minutes, then did a quick release, and they were perfect. So, try 35 minutes initially instead of the 25 it says in the recipe. Otherwise, it was great! And here’s everything we’re eating this week:
Sunday- Instant Pot Black Bean and Ham Soup with Rice (It was SO good, and the kids ate it all! *Mom Win*)
Tuesday- Kale Chicken Caesar Salad with Egg and Avocado and Ciabatta
Wednesday- Dinner at Church for the Kids, Leftover Black Bean Soup for me (Scott has a work event)
Thursday- Mushroom Marsala Pasta Bake with Caesar Salad
I hope you have a wonderful start to your week! Happy Monday!