Wednesday, November 2, 2016

cautiously optimistic

I was sad to see October go. It's one of my favorite months.
Just seemed weird to turn the calendar to November yesterday.
Already? How can that be?

Though the weather did grace us with a 70F degree day and tons of sunshine. Who could ask for better than that on November 1st?

I'm glad I photographed The Maple Tree just a couple of days ago. 
I knew in a matter of days, all those red leaves would be on the ground.

Sure enough, here's The Tree today. It's been raining all day, which really accelerates the leaf-dropping process. 

You all know that I don't frequent Goodwill too much anymore. Instead, I'm working more on decluttering and donating my stuff to resale shops instead of buying. However, I still run in once in awhile when dropping off a donation. I found that Target is still donating brand-new items to Goodwill. A woman walking out of the store had a gorgeous lamp that I commented on. She said it was new from Target and that she really got a deal. I didn't find anymore lamps, but I did find these two brand-new pillows. If you're familiar with the prices of new decorative pillows ~ usually $25 - $30 each ~ then you know I scored a deal for $5 each!

I also found these like-new suede loafers from The Walking Company. You can barely tell that these are worn. (The only way I will buy used shoes.)

Speaking of good deals, have you been to an Aldi lately? I haven't shopped there regularly in years, due to eating a clean diet and buying mostly organic foods. Well, Aldi is jumping on the organic bandwagon and now carries an amazing variety of organic and healthy foods. I got organic carrots, tomatoes, salad greens, ground beef, bread, olive oil, and canned pumpkin all for much less than at traditional grocery stores. I also found a healthy frozen spelt and veggie mix, spaghetti squash, jarred pasta sauce (for when I don't have my own on-hand...I got a regular marinara sauce and a specialty tomato butternut squash sauce, both with clean ingredients...always read the labels on food; a lot of pasta sauces have nasty ingredients in them, including soybean oil), pecans and even Kerrygold cheese! If you're not familiar with Kerrygold butter or cheese, they're from Ireland and are made from hormone-free, grass-fed cows. We don't eat much butter, but when we do, we use Kerrygold. There is nothing like it! The taste is so much better than the conventional butter we have here in the States.

Today's headline in the Chicago Tribune. We are nervously excited for this last game tonight! As I mentioned in a previous post, Brian's been a Cubs fan since he was a little boy. The Cubs have not won the World Series since 1908. I can't even fathom the excitement for Cubs fans and the city of Chicago tonight if when the Cubs win! Too bad my maternal grandpa isn't still around to be watching these games. He was a huge Cubs fan, too. He passed away three years ago at the age of 97. My mom posted on Facebook today, "I think if the Cubs win tonight, my Dad will rise from the grave." ha ha

I've got a vegetable lasagna in the oven, beers chilling for the guys, and wine for me. Bring on the game! 


  1. I'll keep my fingers crossed for a Cubs victory. How exciting!!
    We have an Aldi close by. Unfortunately it is currently closed for remodeling. Can't wait til it re-opens and I can check out the organic items. Can't beat their prices. I also must try the Kerry Gold products. I've seen them before, but didn't realize they were from hormone free and pasture fed cows. Win-win in my book. Thanks for the tip.

  2. I guess we would not appreciate the autumn colors if they lasted ages, would we? I sure love seeing yours! I heard that Aldi was going organic, there's not one near us now but I sure will go when we move back home. I always try to buy Kerrygold butter but have not seen their cheese.

    Good luck on the game!

  3. Sunshine weather sounds wonderful! Happy Thursday ♥

  4. I'll bet you're thrilled with the results of that game last night. :) I had a lot of fun this morning watching videos of Bill Murray's reactions. Your Goodwill finds are great! I love your shoes, they look very comfortable and stylish. I'm impressed with your food from Aldi! I used to shop there when I lived in northern NY and there were quite a few things I really liked to buy. We don't have Aldi in NM but I wish we did. Maybe someday. We have Trader Joe's here, so I can't complain too much. I hope you have a good weekend, Melanie.

  5. It's still warm here and the colors are just starting to show up. I know that it's going to be short-lived...and no...I cannot believe it's November. Where does the time go?

  6. You sure captured the tree in all of it's glory before the leaves dropped.

    I need to go to Aldi's again. I've only been a couple of times.

    Your pillows are pretty and what a great price on them.

    Enjoy the game.

    I think I'll fix tacos for supper and have a margarita. :-)

    Love & hugs ~ FlowerLady

  7. Happy Cubs, Melanie! And, I love KerryGold butter, too. Now, that is the way butter should taste.

  8. I love aldi and do much of my shopping there...lots of gluten free foods. And Target goodies are some of my favorite finds at GW!

  9. October is definitely a hard month to say goodbye to, but that means CHRISTMAS is coming soon :) :)

  10. What a week of great finds! I'm SO happy the Cubs won! I grew up on them and they have always been my favorite team!

  11. Aldi is a great store, and so much easier on the budget. And if you do buy something you don't like, that a double guarantee policy.
    It's amazing how the tree went from just beautiful to almost bare after the rain.

    Have a good weekend

  12. The game sure was exciting. Good for the Cubs winning it all! Hugs,

  13. I've heard about the healthy foods at Aldi and like you, I haven't been there for years and years. I'll definitely check it out. I mostly cook with fresh veggies, wondering how the produce department is. I like most organic meats but we tried grass fed beef a few times and it was terrible. I'm surprised you don't make your marinara sauce from scratch. It's very simple, I could share my recipe if you'd like.

    I was wondering when you were scheduled to have your surgery. Are you gong to wait until after the holidays? I'm having a glitch with outgoing email so I thought I'd ask here. You can still email me, I just can't send one direct from my comments. :(


    1. I do make my own marinara - like I said in my post, I didn't have any on-hand (I usually keep in the freezer) and I simply didn't have enough time to make my own sauce that day when I was also making lasagna. Yes, trying to wait next year for the knee surgery. Privately emailed you.

  14. I have so enjoyed your Fall posts on IG and FB, it has been a treat to me to see actual color on a tree. I try to pretend that I see golds and reds-and sometimes it does seem as though it may be real if the light is shining just right.
    We are on opposite ends of the spectrum, I am so happy that November is here and that we finally are cooling off.
    Congrats on the Cubs winning!

  15. the sweater pillow is very cute...

    Please visit

  16. That really was quite a game, wasn't it? WOOHOO! Growing up in St. Joseph like I did, all of our radio and television stations came out of Chicago, so we were all fans. I had such a blast watching the series, and the outcome was especially pleasing. But I do like the Indians too, so it was a win-win for me. I just like the Cubs more!


I read and appreciate every comment!