Archive | Family RSS feed for this section

Peach Picking Fun

14 Aug

One of the perks of living in the country is that we have a pick-your-own orchard about 20 minutes from our house. I last shared about our Fruit Picking Adventures FIVE years ago (wow, time flies… also look at that chubby little Jack!)

Here we are 5 years later and we still love the opportunity to run out to the farm for some peach picking. We went and had a fantastic diner breakfast nearby and then got to Baugher’s Orchard’s around 10:30 or so on a Sunday. They charge $2 per person to ride the wagon from the market to the peach tree area. Once you get there, they provide you with big bags that you can fill, give you a quick lesson on how to determine which fruit is ripe, and then let you roam free.

We ended up halfway filling two bags, which I think ended up being around $18 once we got back to the market to weigh it and pay. It was so many peaches that we were able to enjoy them with our lunches each day and still had enough left over to slice up with dinner for a couple nights.

Of course, once they are gone I might need to stop back by the Orchard’s Market and buy a few more!

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!

A Wedding Portrait (3 of 3)

3 Jul

I’ve mentioned that all three of my siblings happened to get married within a 9 month period of time. Well, the last wedding was over Memorial Day weekend, which means it was time for me to dust off my cross-stitching supplies and get to work on my third wedding portrait.

You can see the first one (for my brother’s September wedding) here. And here is my other sister’s portrait (for her December wedding).

When it came to the portrait I did for Kelsey and Chris, here is a photo of them (borrowed from my sister’s instagram page) on their wedding day that I referenced for colors:

I also took a few of my own photos the day of the event, so I could try to best copy the shape of Kelsey’s dress and little details like Chris’ tie-tack, his brown shoes and each of their eye colors. I started by sketching out my intentions:

Then I spent a bunch of hours making sure it was perfect. Once I finished, I felt like it was still missing something… their dog! My sister and her husband love Mambo like one of the family, so I decided to add her into their wedding portrait. Here’s a Mambo reference photo (also borrowed from Kelsey’s account…):

And here is the finished wedding portrait:

I love the way it turned out and it was a fun way to make something special for each of my siblings to celebrate their big days!

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!

The Frederick Running Festival Kid’s Fun Run

5 May

This modeling behavior thing for your kids is really working! I’ve enjoyed running lots of races over the years and Jack even joined me at the Baltimore Running Festival in 2017 to do the Kid’s Fun Run race. However, he hasn’t really had much interest since then. It doesn’t help that they discontinued the kid’s race after the one he did in 2017.

So imagine how proud I was when he started talking about wanting to do another run like mommy!

I started looking out for a kid’s run that is 1 mile or less and finally saw that the Frederick Running Festival had their own kid’s run… and the $15 fee included a kid’s Under Armour shirt AND a finishing medal!

I had to work that morning, so I went back and forth on whether I should sign up for the 5k that night. I ended up NOT doing the 5k and we just drove down to the Frederick fairgrounds so Jack could do his run.

They divided the kids into two groups: 7 and under and 8 – 12. The kids who were 7 and under were welcome to have a parent run with them, so Jack asked daddy to run along. They ran the race and I met them both at the finish line. It was only a 1/4 mile race or so, which went very, very quickly. In the future, I’m going to try and find a 1 mile race for him.

Here are some photos from Saturday:

Oh and if you notice, there is something weird going on with Jack’s front tooth. It is literally hanging on by a thread and the kid refuses to pull it out. He keeps doing this gross thing where he pushes it out with his lip in photos and it honestly makes me want to hurl. Yay parenthood!

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!

Favorite Books for a 7-Year-Old

29 Apr

I mentioned that I picked up a bunch of books for Jack at the thrift store recently, which made me think that it would be fun to share some of his current favorite books. He is in the ‘early reader’ stage where he is getting better and better at reading on his own each week, so by picking books he can read himself with little help it helps raise his confidence.

For the past 7 years, I’ve been reading him a book before bed each night. But for the past month or so, he ALSO reads me a book before bed. It’s enough to make my little bookworm heart grow three sizes!

Here are our current favs:

For Jack to Read To Me


At this point we probably own over a dozen Pete the Cat books (easily), but Jack LOVES them… so if I ever see one we don’t have I tend to snap it up. They range in skill level though, so some of them are ‘mommy read’ books and some are ‘Jack read’ books. All these are books that Jack can read to me with little to no help:

For Me to Read to Jack


What Should Danny Do (The Power to Choose)

My friend Lindsey sent this book over to Jack and he LOVES it and has made me read it to him probably 20 times so far. It is a choose your own adventure book with a twist… Danny can either choose good choices (such as share with his brother) or bad choices (such as destroy his brother’s game) and then you get to see the consequences. When pulling up this book, I saw that there is a second book in the series, What Should Danny Do? School Day, so I immediately ordered it.

Dog Man

Dog Man Lord of the Fleas

If you have a first grader, you MUST check out the Dog Man books. Jack is obsessed with them! They are in comic book format, so most of the scenes are easy to understand even without knowing the big words. We currently own 5 out of 6 Dog Man books and each night will read 2 – 3 chapters. Jack loves them so much that he begs for additional chapters every single night!

Now it’s your turn to share, do you have kid book recommendations?

Disclosure: Pocketful of Joules is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to

Like what you see? Share me with your friends!