Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday Favorites 10.28.16

Happy Friday friends!!

It's time for Friday favorites with Erika, Narci and Andrea!

1. Austin and I splurged on some speakers this month. We have been wanting some for a long time and I LOVE THEM!!!!!

We went with the play 1 in WHITE so that they would blend in with our white shelves. 

I've been listening to Michael Buble, one of my favorites, all week long. 

Seriously his new album is awesome. He collaborated with Megan Trainor for one of the songs too. It is an unexpected pair, but I love it.

2. This week has been crazy busy! Fisher and I ran lots of errands on Tuesday. He was a trooper.

One of those things was voting!! The sticker was his FAVORITE part of voting.

3. Did you check out my What's Up Wednesday post? These little boys racing their boxes through the store was a favorite mama moment for me.

I just love seeing them enjoy each other!

4. These lunch boxes are my FAVORITE!

Baker loves carrots and ranch dressing for lunch and the middle section is perfect for ranch. I love this lunch box. Last year I used a cheap container all year long and this is WAY better. 

You can find them here: 

5. Last week I attended another FREE Home Depot workshop with two of my favorite ladies!

I was letting my snowman dry so I didn't finish the details of his face, but isn't he cute! And it's reversible. 

You should check out the free Do-it-herself workshops at your local Home Depot. It's a fun free girls night!

Happy Friday friends!!!

Thursday, October 27, 2016

The Butlers Do: Calendar October 29th - November 5th

Last week over at The Abilene Post, I took you on a little road trip to Guadalupe Mountains National Park. I also shared a few more photos and tips here this week too.

I am currently working on a fun holiday gift guide! Do you have a favorite local shopping place? If so please share it with me! You can comment on this post or email me at

{Saturday October 29th}

{Sunday October 30th}

{Monday October 31st}

Library: Toddler Time (main) 10:45 AM
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center - Fall Fest(1718 Pine St.) 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Paramount - Edward Scissorhands 7:30 PM

{Tuesday November 1st}

{Wednesday November 2nd}

{Thursday November 3rd}

{Friday November 4th}

{Saturday November 5th}

Through October 31st -

you can check out the DRI pumpkin patch. 

Every Saturday from  6:30 - 7:30 they host scaredy car hour with less scares! (that's what I would need!) Check their fb page for hours and more information. 

*Times are subject to change please verify with the hosting venue*
If you have an event you would like added please email me at

Want to advertise or have a featured placement on the calendar? please email me at

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

What's Up Wednesday 10/26/16

I'm linking up with Shay and Sheaffer for What's Up Wednesday!

1. What we're eating this week...

Mix and Match Mama's Chipotle Fish Tacos 

2. What I'm reminiscing about...

Last week I took the boys all over Abilene looking for a Chase costume for Baker. 

First he wanted to be ghost for Halloween, then when he saw Fisher's Marshall costume he decided he wanted to be Chase. (of course!) 

When we finally found a Chase costume in his size, he said "I think I actually want to be no-noggin." I about died right there. Does everyone know who no-noggin is? The scarecrow from Curious George A Halloween Boofest. 

Since then he has also mentioned being a lion. 

3 years olds!!

Who knows what he will actually be for Halloween! I guess we will just have to see!

On our adventure they found these cars and had races down the aisles at khols. 

I could not stop laughing at them, and at the same time it made me slightly scared for their future shenanigans. 

3. What I'm loving...
I took the boys to make Christmas plates last week!! I can't wait to see the finished product! 

4. What we've been up to...
My cousin Alyssa got married this month. The wedding was beautiful!

5. What I'm dreading...

6. What I'm working on...

We are trying to finish up our house! We took out accordian doors to our pantry when we redid the floors in our house. I  have been searching for vintage doors for the last year and haven't been able to find any that are the right deminsions. I asked Austin to build me doors and he did! Hopefully I can paint and distress them soon! 

7. What I'm excited about...

Seriously! I can't wait!

8. What I'm watching/reading...

I'm almost finished with Reached, the third book in the matched trilogy. 

9. What I'm listening to...
We just installed these new Sonos speakers and they are awesome!! I'm not sure why we waited so long to get speakers! 

10. What I'm wearing...
I picked up this dress on sale at Nordstrom last week. 
And by picked up I mean ordered online because we don't have a Nordstrom! 

I always order a size down in Caslon brand. 

11. What I'm doing this weekend...

We are dedicating this little nugget at church this weekend. It'll be a fun family filled weekend. 

12. What I'm looking foward to next month...

Did I mention decorating for Christmas! And Christmas music!


We are headed to an aggie game in a few weeks to spend time with my college roomies and their families. 

I've got a fun girls weekend planned with my mom and sister to see Phantom of the Opera, and do some Christmas shopping. 

I turn 31 at the end of the month. 

Austin and I also celebrate our 8th anniversary. 

Pretty much November is going to be a fabulous month!! 

13. What else is new...

I voted!! Have you?

Bonus: Favorite Halloween memory...

I mean!! Seriously! My mom was awesome and made our costumes. Thanks mom! 

Happy Wednesday friends!

Monday, October 24, 2016

Guadalupe Mountains National Park

I've been asking my mom, Dana Brinkman, to share some of her adventures for the last year. She is a fabulous writer and photographer. She loves to travel and explore all over the world. We joke that she gets the itch if she sits still too long. Today she is sharing about Guadalupe Mountains National Park that is right here in Texas! 

I love fall! I love the cooler temperatures and the beautiful red, yellow, and gold colors that come with them. One of the best places to view the color changes in West Texas is at Guadalupe Mountains National Park, and since it’s the centennial year for our National Park Service, it’s the perfect time to visit.

GMNP contains 4 ecosystems and is an excellent example of a fossil reef from the Permian Era. It contains 2 campgrounds and 86 miles of hiking trails. On my first hike in the park I went to the top of Texas. Guadalupe Peak is the highest point in the state at 8751 feet. The steep trail is graded as strenuous largely due to the 3000 feet of elevation gain. But once at the top, the view is phenomenal! On a clear day you can see for miles! Allow 6-8 hours to hike the 8.4 round-trip trail and carry plenty of water.

But my favorite fall hike is McKittrick Canyon Trail. The colors of the trees are astounding! There are examples of big tooth maple, oak, walnut, ash, Texas madrone, aspen, juniper, Douglas fir, ponderosa pine, white pine & other varieties of trees in the park and there is no better place to view the vivid fall colors than McKittrick Canyon. The trail begins at the McKittrick Canyon Visitor Center, approximately 3 ½ miles from Hwy 62/180. The trail is well maintained and only gains a moderate 300 feet in elevation on the 6.8 mile roundtrip hike to the Grotto. At the Grotto there are picnic tables beside a spring-fed stream for a beautiful spot to rest or have a snack. Just beyond the Grotto lies the historic Hunter Line Cabin. Allow 3-5 hours depending on how long you linger on the trail. If that is a bit far, it’s only 4.8 miles roundtrip to Wallace Pratt’s summer vacation cabin. Pratt donated 5632 acres of this land to the national park service around 1960. He once described it as the most beautiful spot in Texas. I just might have to agree.

For those who want more of a hike, continue beyond the Grotto to the Notch where the trail climbs another 800 feet in elevation. Those hardy individuals will be rewarded with fantastic views of the canyon.

McKittrick Canyon is a day use area. Gates open at 8:00 AM and close at 6:00 PM in summer and 4:30 PM in winter.  And it’s in Mountain Standard Time, not Central Standard Time so clocks should be set back an hour for Texans! McKittrick Canyon picnic area is wheelchair accessible.

Another favorite fall hike in the park is Devil’s Hall Trail. The trail begins at Pine Springs Campground and goes up the streambed of Pine Springs Canyon, through the natural rock that forms Hiker’s Staircase and culminates into a narrow slot canyon called Devil’s Hall. Allow 3-5 hours for this moderate rated 4.2 mile roundtrip hike. Due to higher elevation, color usually shows here before McKittrick Canyon.

Smith Springs is a little oasis in the middle of an arid landscape! It is 2.3 miles round trip loop and takes about 1.5 hours. The trail is paved from Frijole Ranch to Manzanita Spring and rated easy to moderate. The hidden gem is Smith Springs with its clear pools and shady canopy.

The Pinery Trail is a short, 0.9 mile round trip hike in a desert landscape on a paved trail near the Pinery Ruins Visitor Center. It features remains of the Old Butterfield Stagecoach Overland Mail Route Pinery Station built in 1858.

Another trail worth mentioning for fall color is Dog Canyon and Tejas Trail on the west side of the park which makes it more difficult to access from Texas. There are also gypsum dunes on the west side of the park.

Color is usually at its peak sometime between the last 2 weeks of October and first week of November but before planning a visit, check out the fall color report  
Because trees turn colors at different rates within the park, it is also wise to stop at the visitor center and ask which hike is best for the time you are there. The Pine Springs Visitor Center is located at Pine Springs and can be accessed via U.S. Highway 62/180 between Carlsbad, New Mexico, and El Paso, Texas.

Guadalupe Mountains National Park is located in far west Texas on U.S. Highway 62/180. It is approximately 330 miles or 5 hours from Abilene, TX.
For more information on visiting Guadalupe Mountains National Park, go to:

Thank you for sharing Dana!

Also don't forget if you have a 4th grader:

You can sign up here for a free park pass to visit the National Parks with A Kid in Every Park. This includes free admission for everyone in your family too. 

I'm adding Guadalupe Mountains National Park to my bucket list. Are you?