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Kladder Update: Fall Has Arrived

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It feels a lot like Fall over here on Rosewood Avenue. On our walks with the kids in the evening we’ve started noticing the festive decor that’s started going up around the neighborhood - giant spiders and webs seem like all the rage this year. I’m highly considering some Halloween themed lights for our porch pillars but the little spider on the front door will have to do for now.

We’ve already started checking off the boxes on our not so official ‘Fall Bucket List’ including donuts at Robinettes, pumpkin painting, a visit to Meijer Gardens and attending the annual Smith Family Fall Festival.

Two years ago my extended family on my Dad’s side opted to gather in October replacing the holiday gatherings. Dad comes from a family with 5 siblings (him plus 4 sisters - he’s the middle child… it’s a miracle he survived) who now have families of their own. The growing family brought new-individual family traditions which made it harder to find time for the massive Thanksgiving/Christmas joint celebrations. Then my aunts introduced the idea of the Fall Festival which quickly became a tradition of its own. They plan Halloween games for this kids like ring toss, duck pond and bag decorating. Everyone brings a dish to pass and my cousin John grills burgers and hot dogs. It’s a great reason to visit home and it’s nice to catch up with our extended family.

Most recently, I’d consider life at the Kladder house to be quite smooth. It’s very possible it feels that way because we are currently surrounded by friends and family who are experiencing major life events. But here on Rosewood we’re not moving or announcing any pregnancies. We’re healthy and for the most part work is pretty stress free . It’s like we’re on cruise control. It’s left a lot of time to organize the house, sell off unused junk, cook dinners outside of our usual crockpot routine and start prepping for the holidays. Not even joking, I’m nearly done with Christmas shopping. All in all, we’re super boring! But here’s a bit more of what we’ve been enjoying lately…

Our visit this week to Fredrick Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park was quite awesome. I’ve been wanting to see the newly installed Womb exhibit by Rebecca Louise Law and it did not disappoint. The main attraction is an entire gallery filled with dried flowers hanging from the ceiling. You can meander through the piece even with a stroller. It looks cool in photos but it’s even cooler in person. It’s up through March 1st 2020 so there is plenty of time to go see it.

During our visit we also made a stop at the farm in the back of the park to check out the giant pumpkins. It’s a great photo op for the kids and a nice destination for a walk on any visit. We also walked the rest of the sculpture pathways and for the first time Natalie had some colorful commentary about the artwork. Mostly, we were made aware at how many butts there are on display and as a family we all giggled like children.

More Fall fun for the kids included a visit to the Grandville Harvest Fest with Jeff’s parents last weekend. The corn crib was a huge hit and if that wasn’t made evident by their participation at the event, it became even more clear while doing laundry later last weekend - corn kernels ‘er where ya’ll.

A few weeks ago Natalie and the rest of the students at Grace Church Preschool hit the road with their tricycles and scooters to raise funds for St. Judes Children’s Hospital. Throughout the week leading up to the event each class learned about bike and road safety including lessons on helmets and how to cross the street. The teachers marked off the parking lot outside the school with cones and set up rest stations for the kids to make as many loops as they could during the hour long event. The kids did great and Natalie had a blast.

I’ve officially winterized my golf clubs for the season, but Jeff is still going strong. Two weeks ago he was able to get away for a guys only golf weekend and he continues to golf here at home whenever his schedule and the weather permits. I will be joining the Women’s Association Board for a third year this Spring and was voted in as Board Secretary for 2020 which just means I take the meeting notes. For my last round of golf in 2019 I teamed up with co-workers for the Annual Steelcase United Way Outing at Saskatoon Golf Course. It was not pretty, but it sure was fun.

We’re gearing up for Halloween - costumes are ready and we’re going with an ‘under the sea’ theme this year. Until then, we’ll be busy raking leaves, making chili in the crockpot and watching football. Enjoy Autumn everyone!


  • Tonight we’ll be toasting with friends to raise money for HQ at the Connecting the Dots event in Grandville. There are still tickets available if you’re free this evening!

  • Meet you at Lee & Birch on Wealthy this Saturday for their Boots & Bubbles Sorel Trunk Show from 11am to 5pm. 20% off boots my friends!

  • And Saturday we’re looking forward to enjoying a classic at DeVos Performance Hall! Fiddler on the Roof is showing and we’re making a date night out of it!


  • Kingfisher - I’ve dined twice with friends now at the newly opened Kingfisher which occupies the old Marie Catribs space. Their Deli is now open and we highly recommend it.

  • We are currently obsessed with HBO’s Succession. It’s totally inappropriate with extremely strong characters. You will be entertained and baffled.

  • I’m two months behind on book club readings and I blame the waitlist at the library - but better late than never! I recently finished Educated (it was wonderful) and now I’m onto The Silent Patient. It’s a page turner!

  • Tasted Cyclopse Bake Shop treats at the farmers market last weekend they are not only tasty but incredible beautiful! Check out these White Claw cookies! I was impressed.