October 31, 2015


Sweet and Salty Fall Snack Mix

Happy Halloween!

Fall is my family's favorite season and Halloween is our favorite holiday. Every year growing up, my family would get together for a big Halloween celebration that was always full of fun.

My husband and I are continuing the family tradition this year, and our costumes are ready, our pumpkins are out on the front porch and I'm enjoying one of my favorite Halloween snacks today. Here is my family's recipe for our simple Sweet and Salty Fall Snack Mix:

Sweet and Salty Fall Snack Mix

Serves about 4

  1. Pour the bag of candy corn, cinnamon and peanuts into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Shake and serve!
  3. (Optional) Split mix into Ziplock bags and share with friends and family.

Even if you don't enjoy the sweet and salty ingredients separately, something delicious happens when you mix them all together.

Hope you enjoy this simple recipe of ours and have a Happy Halloween!

October 25, 2015


Gettysburg in a Day

I've always enjoyed learning about American History, particularly the U.S. Civil War era, since it occurred during the time that one of my favorite presidents – President Abraham Lincoln – served the country.

That being said, for as long as I can remember, I've wanted to visit Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, the site of the Battle of Gettysburg and the inspiration for Lincoln's Gettysburg Address

This week, we finally had the opportunity to!

We began our drive early, to make the road trip from Pittsburgh to Gettysburg in a day. 

We then navigated directly to the Gettysburg National Military Park to obtain as much information from the National Park Museum and Visitor Center about what we wanted to visit as possible.

After we had been to the Visitor Center, we ultimately decided to visit the Soldiers' National Cemetery, where Union who passed away in the Battle of Gettysburg were buried and where Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address.

We then participated in the self-guided Auto Tour, so that we could tour the 25+ miles of Gettysburg at our own pace.

The visit made us thankful that: "Our fathers brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation, conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal." – Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg Address, November 19, 1863

Although it is a solemn place, it was a very informative visit, and we enjoyed the beautiful fall day we had there.

Have you visited Gettysburg before? How did you spend your day at the National Park? 

Comment below or connect with me on Facebook or Instagram to share!

October 18, 2015


What We Loved about Ohiopyle

We have been so fortunate to have family visiting us this month, and to have had the opportunity to take them with us on our explorations around the Mid-Atlantic.

My mother and sister-in-law from the Southwest were here, and we were so excited to see them experience their first autumn – luckily, we didn't have to go far to view the beautiful fall colors – they were all around us!

But, we wanted to take a scenic fall drive, so we found ourselves in the Laurel Highlands at Ohiopyle State Park.

The Laurel Highlands are along the westernmost ridges of the Appalachian Mountains, and feature beautiful rolling hills, rivers and woods in the area, which are perfect for hiking and are so picturesque!

At the heart of the Highlands is Ohiopyle (a Native American name meaning "white frothy water").

Ohiopyle was founded alongside the Youghiogheny River (Yawki-gay-nee), and is known for some of the best whitewater rafting in the Eastern U.S., though, we didn't see anyone out rafting on such a brisk day.

We had an incredible time driving and hiking through the area and taking in the fall scenery!

We were also excited to stop by Frank Lloyd Wright's Kentuck Knob and Fallingwater homes, though the home tours were full, so we spent time exploring the grounds instead.

All in all, it was a great fall day, and we even experienced our first Mid-Atlantic snow in the cool weather of the Highlands, which was beautiful (but also triggered the onset of our first sickness of the year).

Stay tuned for our next fall exploration – a daytrip to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania!

October 10, 2015


How to Experience a Covered Bridge Festival in the Midwest

Some of the best memories I had growing up revolve around going to festivals with my family, and one of my most cherished memories is of waking up early on a chilly weekend in October to take a roadtrip to the Parke County Covered Bridge Festival.

My grandparents took my father to the festival when he was young and he took my brother and I while we were growing up. I hope to continue the tradition when we start a family, because it is a wonderful autumn experience!

If you are like my husband who grew up without covered bridges and are not sure what one is, let me share with you what has been described to me: Covered bridges originated in Europe and were brought to the Mid-Atlantic and Midwest by settlers to solve the problem of deterioration of the wood upon exposure to the elements, and to aid horses who were leery of crossing over rushing water.

It is a great event filled with many attractions which include: local arts and crafts, food vendors, live entertainment and storytelling.
The festival draws large crowds from states across the Midwest, but you can make the most of your experience by:

  1. Getting to Rockville early to enjoy hot apple cider and a few crullers in the morning.
  2. Looking through arts and crafts when vendors open in the afternoon.
  3. Driving through the county to view the covered bridges with beautiful fall foliage in the background in the evening.

We had a great time at the festival exploring covered bridges and experiencing all it had to offer!

Have you been to a covered bridge festival before? What was your favorite part? 

Comment below or connect with me on Facebook or Instagram to share!

October 2, 2015


My Fall Uniform

It is not a secret that autumn is my favorite season for many reasons, but let's add this fabulous fall uniform to the list!

I love crisp leaves, brisk October days and the opportunity to accessorize and layer that the season brings. Fall hats and boots are my favorite accessories because you can use them to dress up or down any outfit, whether your style is comfortable, chic or both.

Burgundy is my go-to autumnal color that I often use with neutrals to really make the color pop. I loved pairing this classic fedora and cardigan together for that reason, then added some warm jewelry and finished the look off with a comfortable boot.

This look is going to be my fall uniform since it combines my favorite accessories and colors, but most of all, because it is comfortable and I'll be spending most of the season out exploring Pittsburgh and the Mid-Atlantic, searching for the best fall colors to shoot.

You can shop my look below:

1. Classic Burgundy Fedora: 21 | 2. Neutral Flyaway Cardigan: Sonoma  | 3. Jeweled Bracelet Set (Gifted, similar here at: Charming Charlie)  | 4. Straight Fit Pants: Calvin Klein | 5. Tall Wedge Boots: Croft & Barrow

Which fall colors and combinations are you wearing this season?

Connect with me on Facebook or Instagram to share!
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