Anniversaries & Mini Apple Pies

Mini Apple Pies


It really has been an exciting year for our family. My parents celebrated their 40th at the beginning of August! My parents (my mom will tell you it was all my dad) wanted to celebrate with friends and family at Table Rock Lake, so on August 13 we had a big party! My brother grilled hamburgers and hot dogs, the rest of the family executed the party flawlessly (between the wedding and this…I’m certain we could pull off events together). Since the party was outside, we went with finger desserts, cookies, cupcakes and these mini apple pies. They were a huge hit!

My mom and dad are loved by so many and I know that it is mostly because they have spent their lives loving people well…helping friends with little (and big) projects, welcoming neighbors who are new to the area, or cooking for friends and family who are celebrating and those who are needing some extra care. They love people. It has been such a privilege to get to watch over my lifetime…and hopefully I have learned a little along the way.

Mini Apple Pies

For the Crust:

1 stick cold butter grated then frozen (salted)

1 1/4 cup all purpose flour

1/4 cup ice cold water by the tablespoon

For the Filling:

1 Can Prepared Apple Pie Filling  –  Cut & Diced You can use homemade and I absolutely encourage it, but for this we needed several so I went the quick route.

Egg Wash – 1 egg + 1 tablespoon water whisked together

Cinnamon & Sugar

Grate your butter into a mixing bowl and place the bowl into the freezer for 15 minutes. Add 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour and cut it into the grated butter with a pastry cutter until you have coarse crumbs of flour coated butter. Add about 1/4 cup of ice cold water by the tablespoon to your coarse crumbs. You may not need this much, so add gradually as you mix by hand. When a dough ball is formed, gather it together and place it on a piece of parchment paper. Shape it into a round, flat disk and cover it with the parchament paper. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours.

Roll the dough out onto a well floured surface. Using a circle shaped cutter (or the rim of a glass), cut out as many circles as you can fit. Then gather up the remaining dough and cut out the circles again. Place circles on a baking sheet. Top one half of pie crust with 2 tablespoons of the diced apple filling. Fold pie crust over and crimp edges with the tines of a fork. Cut small holes in the top of each pie.

Using a pastry brush, brush on the egg wash and sprinkle generously with cinnamon and sugar. Bake at 400 for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown on top. Enjoy!

Here are a few more pics from the 40th Bash!


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I Wasn’t Expecting That…

I’m a planner…sometimes (most of the time) to the point that it is a fault. I plan meals, my running route, parties, my day; I *heart* check lists.

I really am working on this.

Over the past two years of my life, there has been so much I never planned for myself. I can assure you none of us Type A personalities add divorce to our check lists. One could also never expect or plan for all of the lessons that come from it: lessons about self, vulnerability, people, family, healing, forgiveness, communication and the grace of a God who can bring such beauty from pain.

I also could have never dreamed that a really handsome, smart and kind guy I had known since middle school would end up being part of my life plans. In August of last year, I got a facebook message from Josh…this guy who I had been friends with in middle school and highschool and had bumped into occasionally over the past several years. We both found ourselves divorced with kiddos. So many details of our story you might not even believe: the timing, how we fit together, our families, our love of thin mints. Honestly, it’s all pretty crazy…well not the thin mint part…everyone loves those.

So then…this happened.

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In June we got married, on the beach with our kiddos and families. Thankful for our families who helped make the day happen. It was a pretty perfect day.

We are now two months into this blending family thing…which has moments that will melt your heart and moments that will make you want to say curse words. I never expected Josh or being a step mom, it is so crazy good.

Images by Funes Photography



Ean’s Lego Party









Ebirthday9My little guy turned four last week! This year, Ean asked for a Lego party. We didn’t do a big party, but E got to have his three cousins (the ones who are old enough) over for a sleepover. We ordered pizza, headed to the park then came back for dessert, lots of legos and a movie.

On the Lego Dessert Table:

Lego Cupcakes

Lego Cookies – Frosted sugar cookies with M&M’s. I did run across the idea on the internet, but have know clue where.

Candy – Yellow Gumballs, M&M’s, Twizzler Bites and Lego Candy.

Jones Soda

We used legos, stripy straws, cut out circles and lots of color to decorate. My mom and dad had bought me the wonderful cakeplate for my birthday…it was perfect! I designed the printables and invites. Jacob, Hannah, Clayton & Nora got legos & candy in their favor bags…which kept them all busy on Friday night.

In the past I have had some pretty crazy projects for Matt to do for the party. This time he  was pretty thankful he only had to construct an E made out of Legos…hey it is basketball season.  He did a pretty good job!

Martha Celebrations

Last week I ran into JCPenney Home Store to check on a gift for one of the five thousand occasions that fall in the month of May. Seriously though. I was a little disappointed they did not have what I was looking for. My disappointment suddenly turned into pure joy when I spotted a new party line at our JCPenny’s: Martha Celebrations. One of the most beautiful sights these eyes have ever seen. Amazing patterns, candy, and decorations. Any of the pieces adding the extra cute factor for any occasion. In. Love.

One might wonder: Martha Stewart collection at JCPenny and not Macy’s. Yea me too. It seems like there might be a bit of controversy over that…but I’m not trying to let that burst my bubble yet.

Image found here.

Sunshine & Lemonade














Little Miss had her first birthday party on Sunday! The original plan was for Saturday, but for some odd reason there was snow on the ground…in May. Since her party theme was sunshine and lemonade and not snowflakes and hot chocolate, we decided to push it back a day.

A couple months ago Matt & I came across this cute lemonade stand from Girl Inspired. It kind of created the party theme. Matt built and painted the lemonade stand. Amazing job husband! We repurposed one of the fences from Ean’s 2nd birthday party to help cut the cost and reuse wood. Everything from the invites to the food to the decorations were DIY.

Here is what was on the menu: 

Little Sandwiches 


Fruit Kabobs

Lemon Macarons

Pink Lemonade Fudge

Lemon Cookies

Pink Lemonade Cake Pops (more on these soon)

Ribbon Cake

The candy: Lemon drops, strawberry marshmallows & Strawberry whoppers

To Drink: Lemonade of course….but I may have forgot to take a picture of that.

A big thank you to our families for celebrating with us…and to my brother-in-law Josh for helping with the pics of Miss Nora!

Party Invites

Christmas Party InvitesSo it is a little late in the season to be posting invites…but you never know, it is possible that someone might need an invitation or card in the next 5 minutes. I thought I would share this Christmas Party Printable. Hooray for homemade invites and felt balls…that is another post entirely, however they are super easy and super cute. I hope your Holiday season is going very well, crazy that Christmas is just one week away!

You’re My Favorite Deputy!


Ean requested a Toy Story Birthday this year. The original plan was to have the party at our house with a movie night in the backyard, however, it seems like Ean’s birthday parties attract rain! So last Saturday morning resulted in a complete change of plans. The good news, Ean didn’t know the difference and he had a great time with a few of his friends and cousins!