Friday, May 30, 2014

8 Things I Learned in May

God's still continually teaching me about the beauty and joy that come when I stop to smell the flowers. Or play with the kids. Or read a fiction book. So there's been plenty of those lessons this month, during which we've transitioned from our school routine to summer time!

And I've learned other things this month too ...

1. Kroger sells my favorite kettle corn. Kroger is where I grocery shop {at least} weekly, but I just discovered the red bags of deliciousness ... in the health food aisle near another family favorite, White Cheddar Cheetos Puffs. Obviously, I haven't spent much time in the organic/natural/health food aisle, but it seems I may be there more often now.

2. May really is my favorite month, even if the temperatures fluctuated from 85 degrees to 57 degrees in a matter of days. Thankfully, we're back on the warm end now.

3. A 5K can be both physically and emotionally exhausting, but God still shows up.

4. The Amtrak train is the way to go to Chicago. And there's so much to do once you get there.

5. Online conversations can naturally move into real-life ones. Meeting my blogging friend Beth in Chicago was so much fun. She's the fourth online friend I met in person and it continues to amaze me how real these online friendships are. Ashley started a mastermind group {think like-minded people who brainstorm together and encourage each other} this month. I'm excited to be part of it and have already seen good things happen there.

6. I really liked "Justified." And not just because it's set in Kentucky. Greg gave me {us, really ...} an Amazon Fire TV for my birthday, which makes watching shows on Amazon Prime simple. Plus we catch watch Netflix and listen to Pandora that way too.

{P.S. Doesn't "Justifed" star Timothy Olyphant look like Josh Duhamel? They don't sound alike though.}

7. My newly imposed "Don't get out of your bed until 7 a.m." rule may work. I just instituted it this week, our first week of summer, but it seems to be working. Ben recognizes 7s as upside-down Ls on his digital clock. Whatever works, son. If this is successful, we'll all be nicer people around here this summer. {This rule doesn't apply to Greg, who prefers working early in the morning before his office phone starts ringing.}

8. I'm still addicted to the Pioneer Woman's cinnamon toast that reminds me of how Nanny used to make it when we were kids.

You'll need ...

  • 8 slices of bread {We're big fans of Pepperidge Farm Oatmeal Bread.}
  • 1 stick of butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

It's simple, really, because I only make simple things in the kitchen ...

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Soften butter and mash any remaining chunks with a fork. Mix sugar, cinnamon and vanilla with butter. And spread mixture onto slices of bread on a baking sheet.
  • Switch oven to "broil" and then cook for a few minutes. Typically takes a little less than 10 minutes, but you'll want to watch closely so it doesn't burn. 

How's your month been? Learned anything fun or meaningful?


I love these month-end posts prompted by Emily at Chatting at the Sky. Here are previous month's recaps from 2013: JuneJulyAugustSeptemberOctoberNovember. And from 2014: January. February. March. April.

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  1. I just loved meeting you too!! <3 Just about every weekend now I tell my son I'm not getting up before 7am and so far it hasn't worked. I'm an early bird. My husband says he is doing away with that when he comes home -- up before 7 won't be allowed on weekends. hehe. I really just love these month-end posts. So much fun. Happy Summer!!

  2. KristinHillTaylor5/30/2014 10:34 AM

    I just like to get up when I get up and prefer nobody telling me when that is. Now, I don't like to sleep the day away either, so getting up around 8 a.m. would be perfect. But I'll take 7 a.m. from my kids! :) Hope you have a great weekend, Beth!

  3. I love cinnamon toast and will be trying this recipe!

  4. I love cinnamon toast and every recipe I have tried from the Pioneer Woman!!!! So glad to be a part of the blogger group!!! Looking forward to getting to know you better!!!

  5. KristinHillTaylor6/01/2014 7:40 PM

    You'll never want any other cinnamon toast. :)

  6. KristinHillTaylor6/01/2014 7:40 PM

    The group has been so encouraging - so glad you're part of it too!

  7. Wait until they are teenagers, then you have make them get up at noon. It's surreal, I promise. That Beth is a good one, love that you two met in person. Thanks for popping over to my blog twice this week, I noticed. *wink*

  8. KristinHillTaylor6/02/2014 3:41 PM

    Links to your posts keep appearing in my online life. I've enjoyed what I've read and seen over there! Thanks for coming by here.

    And, you know, I believe you about the teenager thing, but that seems so unbelievable at this point. :)

  9. Karrilee Aggett6/03/2014 11:11 AM

    Hey Kristin... I am popping over from Chatting at the Sky! I just love these What I Learned posts! So fun! I am scared to even TRY that Cinnamon Toast recipe... it sounds amazing! Love your whole list! (Let us know how that new 7 rule works out! I only had one... and she has ALWAYS loved sleep - well, at least during the day time! ;) She loved out last weekend so my mornings now are SERIOUSLY quiet... believe it or not, it's gonna take some getting used to!

  10. KristinHillTaylor6/03/2014 6:50 PM

    Hey, Karrilee! Good to see you here - thanks for coming by. I love these monthly posts too. A week or so in, and the 7 a.m. rule is working out well. My kids are good sleepers, but my son likes the early mornings. :) You do remind me there are seasons for everything!

  11. That is my favorite popcorn too!!!!!

    Love having you in our blogging group and yes, I am amazed at how deep online relationships can grow and become real life relationships too!

    Yummm...we love cinnamon sugar bread. And that sounds so simple! You could even keep the mixture in the fridge and soften it before use?

  12. KristinHillTaylor6/13/2014 2:23 PM

    I guess I know what kind of snacks we need when we get to have that gathering with our blogging group! :)