Welcome to my weekly Slow Day post, inspired by Monica from . My Word for 2018 is Slow and, in the spirit of that word, I’m taking one day each week (Wednesday) off — I’ll be unplugged and offline and plan to move at a slower pace, take time to do things that refresh me, and just really focus on being present and savoring the moment.
Each week, I’ll be sharing a photographic peek into my Slow Day. Enjoy a little peek into our lives!
Silas and I flew to Kansas on Tuesday to be with all of my siblings, my parents, sisters-in-law, and nieces and nephews (except for Zachary who is working as a counselor at The Wilds camp this summer) and celebrate my older sister’s 40th birthday.
We talked, ate all sorts of healthful foods (my sisters are a combination of gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, and a whole bunch of other things free 😉), got pedicures, went out for coffee, talked some more, played crazy games that my dad is famous for coming up with (including a cookie-baking contest with random unmarked gluten-free and vegan ingredients to see who could make up the best cookie recipe with what we were given — no measuring spoons/cups or consulting the internet allowed!), and laughed at the hilarious antics of our kids.
My family is BIG (there are 7 kids and lots of grandkids) and LOUD (we are always talking over one another and having many conversations going at once) and a little crazy (hello, I’m one of them so I’m sure that’s no surprise!), but we always enjoy the rare few times a year we all get to be together!
This time around, I got to say, “See you in a few days!” when I left to fly back to TN because we are ALL meeting up in Arkansas at our annual week at the lake trip starting tonight.
Here’s a little peek into how we spent Wednesday (my day off):
My mom took us to for breakfast. It was one of their last days to be open for breakfast this season.
I had heard so much about this cafe and it was fun to finally get to go — it’s owned by a family that Jesse’s family knows and is just down the street from where my parents live.
It’s beautiful and so fun — and I’d definitely recommend checking it out if you live near Wichita, KS!
I missed the pink memo, but at least I wore stripes! 😉This is my mom and my older sister and youngest sister (we missed you, Gretchen!)
My mom and I split two different items and they were both yummy.
We came home and hung out with my sister’s kids for awhile.
They are growing up so much!
And then I made a big bowl of watermelon for dinner.
The kids found out that I’d never played before, so they taught me how to.
They were all a little upset when I ended up winning! 🙂
Then, Cadence (my oldest niece) and I made a big salad for dinner.
We used some fresh veggies from their garden and it looked SO good!
My sister, Gretchen, came over and brought her three boys and my mom watched them so all of us four sisters could go get pedicures. (Aren’t her boys adorable! I can’t get enough of them!!)
Here are all my four sisters — I think the older we get, the more we look alike! When we were younger, people didn’t usually know that we were sisters!
One of the highlights of the trip was getting to meet my new niece, Genevieve. She’s absolutely beautiful! You can’t see the deep color of her blue eyes here because of the light, but they are just stunning!
Silas LOVED getting to take care of his little cousins!
These two were so cute together!
After dinner, I did two of my nieces’ makeup. They asked me if I could do their makeup and I was happy to oblige! 🙂
I mentioned above that we played some games — one was that we broke into 4 teams and had to see who could put together a US map puzzle the fastest. Our team ended up winning, which I was surprised by since there were only 3 of us!
And then we divided into four different teams and did the cookie-baking challenge. We were given unmarked bags of ingredients that Brigette (the birthday girl!) could eat with her current food restrictions/allergies.
After smelling and tasting them, our team decided that they included gluten-free flour, almond flour, oat flour, coconut oil, vanilla, flax seed, baking soda, baking powder, salt, sugar, brown sugar, cocoa, and chocolate chips.
We used the oat flour, cocoa, vanilla, salt, baking power, baking soda, sugar, and flax seed mixed with water (egg substitute) + chocolate chips to make Double Chocolate Cookies.
We had to choose the time to bake them and the temperature to bake them at, too. Pictured above were the cookie creations from the 4 different teams ready to go into the oven.
Our cookies (the chocolate ones in the back) were SO good — thanks to the fact that I was teamed with my brother, Nathaniel, and sister-in-law, Ellen — both who are great bakers!
We also played some outdoor games and relays.
And had a vegan, gluten-free birthday cake for Brigette!
It was a good day and I’m so glad that I was able to be there for it!