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Kladder Update: It's Fall in Grand Rapids, Michigan!

Fredrick Meijer Gardens kids.jpg

We cannot get enough FALL over here! Between this fabulous autumn weather, all the pumpkin things and the holidays just around the corner… I’m in my happy place. Not even a joke, I ordered Christmas cards yesterday. So there ya have it. I’m excited.

Lets rewind a few weekends back for a recap of the Annual Smith Bonfire held at my parents home in Schoolcraft. Each year they host friends and family (and anyone else they serendipitously invite - my father knows no strangers) at their place in the country for food, beer pong and a giant bonfire. Throughout the summer my dad and his neighbors pile scraps from old work projects, house renovations, old furniture (I swear, every year there is at least one couch in there) and anything else that burns onto the pile that’s later doused with ‘Boy Scout fluid’ and lit on fire! Meanwhile, back in the grain silo, dualing beer-pong tables support the annual young/old tournament. An oldie, like my Dad, is paired with a young’n, my brother, and they vi for this ridiculous solo cup trophy that’s been hot glued together and lists the winners from previous years. It’s a tradition that’s full of all kinds of hometown fun.

Earlier this month Natalie went on her very first field trip with her preschool accompanied by her Grandma Smith. They went to Schwallier’s Country Basket in Sparta and I was giddy seeing the photos of Natalie petting bunnies and picking apples with her classmates. We were still out of town traveling at the time and my Mom who was watching the kids said she loved the opportunity to be there with her.

Last week we took advantage of the Tuesday extended hours at Fredrick Meijer Gardens to check out the Fall on the Farm event with the kids. There was live music, a food truck and tons of pumpkins and mums for taking all kinds of photos. Because the event was outdoors (and because the weather was so nice) the greenhouse inside was completely empty! It was pretty peaceful walking through with the kids checking out the birds and plants.

Last weekend the kids and I joined our buds at Koetsiers Greenhouse for their indoor fall kids area. It’s $10/kid for entry and includes limitless playtime, a pumpkin to paint and popcorn. The play area has multiple blow up jump houses, a corn crib (their fun take on a sandbox), an area for riding toy tractors and even a mini playhouse that Natalie totally remembered from last year. For me and my two kids, $20 was well worth it! If you find yourself stuck inside with the kids this fall and need to get out for a bit, give this a try.

I recently hosted a fun baby ‘sprinkle’ at our house for my golf partner Jamie and her bundle of baby boy joy! He’ll be sufficiently dressed for the first year of his life due to the sprinkling of baby boy clothes opened last weekend. The party theme was golf and we had fun buying squares for Baby Boy Kreirs first tee time (aka predicting the birthday) and doing a mini putt-putt game I created from green felt from Michaels. I burnt my fingers more than once creating it, but it was totally worth it for the fun! Also, if you need a good custom cookie recommendation let me know! Found a good one.

And this past weekend we really got into the spirit of Halloween with the entire Kladder family for the Zoo Goes Boo at John Ball Zoo. For three years running we’ve all dressed up and trick-or-treated with the kids for the event but this year we really amped things up with our group Disney theme. Jeff, the kids and I all dressed up as the family from Disney’s movie Brave. Natalie was Merida, Thomas was a little brother bear (you’d have to see the movie to understand that one), Jeff was King Fergus and I was Queen Elinor (before she turns into a bear!). We later retreated to the Lake in Rockford for some more Halloween fun and Birthday cake celebrating Jeff’s Dad.

And this week the Halloween fun just keeps coming! First with Natalie’s preschool party in the morning for treats and games and then at night my folks are coming up from Schoolcraft to help with Trick-or-Treating with the kids and to hand out candy to the hundreds of ghouls and goblins that’ll take over Rosewood. Since we moved into our house 3 years ago I’ve looked forward to bundling up on our porch with a hot bowl of chilly, spiked apple cider and checking out the kids costumes. Living the Rosewood dream!

Wishing you and yours a fantastic Halloween filled with family fun… and sugar induced comas!

POSTSCRIPT

  • Marcona on Lyon - The newest edition to the Grand Rapids food scene has sufficiently filled the void in Mediterranean cuisine… and then some! I cannot say enough good things about it. Go as soon as you can!!!

  • The Dailey Method Eastown - Continues to be my rock when it comes to fitting in fitness. I wrote about it here in a Client Testimonial talking all about why I love it and why you might too.

  • The crew over at The Great Lake Life recently released a Must Follow Michigan Bloggers list based off of official Domain Authority rankings - which I had to look up: it’s search engine scoring based on credibility. Who knew?! And MCL made the list! Give it a look.

  • And have you heard!!! The Fun Show with Cat and Nat is coming to Grand Rapids next week Wednesday November 7th @ 6p to 20 Monroe Live. They are internet sensations who have a solid sense of humor about motherhood. Their team reached out with two FREE tickets that’ll go to two lucky ladies who submit for the drawing that’ll be announced this Thursday morning. You can enter by commenting on the image copied below on Instagram, Facebook or here on this blog post. Hope to see you there!

Cat and Nat.jpg

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