Family

November 2016: Life Lately.

Christmas Lights Bokeh Play, 2016 Holidays | https://www.roseclearfield.com

I’m structuring my late fall through early spring monthly highlights posts a little differently than my late spring through early fall highlights posts. There are happenings that I want to share here but not as many specific events (i.e. outdoor concerts, festivals). Hopefully, that makes sense, and you’ll stick with me through these less photo heavy months and more text heavy updates.

I know that it’s sort of a given this time of year, but this November, I’ve been extra conscious about taking time every day to count my blessings and be grateful for what I have. Over a two-week span at the beginning of the month, two friends lost parents (one of whom passed away not even two months after receiving a cancer diagnosis), one friend lost a grandparent, Jon Schmidt of the Piano Guys lost his daughter Annie in a tragic hiking accident, and Rob’s beloved Bella crossed the rainbow bridge after a 15+ month battle with cancer.

I have my own daily struggles and uncertainty in life. We all do, I know. Watching people I love suffer incredibly unfair, heart-wretching death of their loved ones puts things in perspective. Jake and I have faced multiple major challenges during our married life and continue to face challenges, but we have so much to be grateful for, too. I have been mindful of my blessings every single day this month, especially as I pray for those close to me who have faced loss.

Happy Thanksgiving! Thanksgiving 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

For Thanksgiving, we stayed close to home, which is sort of the best thing ever. One of the major reasons we live in southeast WI is to be close to family. It’s so great to be able to drive a couple hours or less for major holidays and then get back home to your own bed (and kitties) that night.

My in-laws cooked on Thanksgiving, and then I cooked for myself, Jake, and my parents the day after, which meant my cooking was pretty straightforward and involved chicken (and a little steak) instead of turkey. Recipes: chicken and vegetables / sweet potato casserole / rolls / cranberry sauce / pumpkin pie (with a homemade flaky pie crust from How to Cook Everything). The rolls recipe is now up on the blog, just in time for Christmas and New Year’s meals! So excited! I’m not a big “it’s not X holiday unless we have X food” person. Except for these rolls. They’ve been a family tradition ever since I was little. It was so much fun getting to cook with my mom. We hadn’t cooked together like that in years.

Holiday Decorations 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Jake and I concluded the weekend with holiday decorating. We always get a real tree, which I look forward to all year. I’ve been filling in some finishing touches this past week, but we got the bulk of our decorations up during the last few days in November. I shared a few of the new decorations I picked up this year over here.

November 2016 Blog DIY Sneak Peek | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Otherwise, I’ve been working on the final adoption home study tasks, finishing up or at least making progress on a bunch of home projects, and working on lots of posts for the blog. Over the next month or so, I’m really excited to share some new DIY projects including DIY holiday wall art (the canvas art tutorial is already up right here) and my made over file cabinet (all pictured above!), more Christmas and general winter inspiration, best of 2016 (both photos and what I’ve been reading), and 2017 goals.

Fox in the Yard with a Squirrel - Southeast WI | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Finally, one of the highlights of November was seeing a fox right in our yard. There are foxes in the neighborhood. I’ve seen a few from a distance before but never one so close. He’s wandered through a few times now, always on the go, hence I’ve only snapped a few pictures of him. I can’t get over the dark red fur color.

How was your November? Are you mostly focused on the holidays this month or do you have other events going on as well?

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

October 2016 Highlights

Fall Leaves at Holy Hill | https://www.roseclearfield.com

This October was one of those beautiful Octobers where the leaves stay colorful for several weeks and it’s warm enough to enjoy the beautiful colors. I know I complain because I get sick of everyone I know and Pinterest shoving fall in my face every single day. But I actually get it when fall is, you know, kind of perfect.

Fall Harvest Festival Floral Show at the Mitchell Park Domes | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/10: Domes Fall Harvest Festival show. I love visiting the Domes for their seasonal shows. You can see my full set of photos from the show over here.

China Lights at the Boerner Botanical Gardens | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/13: China Lights. I promise this is the last time I’m talking about China Lights on this blog. I’m so glad I got to see this amazing exhibit during its run in Milwaukee. Check out my full China Lights post here.

Lindsey Stirling at the Riverside October 2016

10/14: Lindsey Stirling. We saw Lindsey Stirling in Milwaukee as part of her Brave Enough tour for her new album. (Remember how I was talking about her t-shirts? I ended up wearing this one.) Her show was intense, really loud with tons of lighting effects, but amazing. I’ve really never seen anything like it before. I loved learning more about her newest album and how she got where she is today.

Holy Hill | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Fall at Holy Hill | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Holy Hill in autumn, gorgeous colors! | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/16: Holy Hill. My in-laws had never been to Holy Hill and wanted to go during fall to see the colors. As previously mentioned, the leaves are on point this year, and the colors didn’t disappoint.

While we were up that way, we also got to see Jim Zamzow’s annual Halloween display. (See last year’s display over here.)

Jim Zamzow's Annual Halloween Display in Hubertus, WI | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Jim Zamzow's Annual Halloween Display in Hubertus, WI | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Jim Zamzow's Annual Halloween Display in Hubertus, WI | https://www.roseclearfield.com

It wouldn’t be a Wisconsin holiday display without something Packers.

Grant Park in October | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/17: Grant Park. Grant Park is one of the quintessential locations in Milwaukee to visit in the fall. The day I went, it was sunny and warm enough to be outside in a t-shirt and jeans. Again, kind of a perfect fall.

Grant Park Waterfall | https://www.roseclearfield.com

The Grant Park waterfall flow varies quite a bit from month to month, but it’s running full force right now.

New Orleans Highlights | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/19-10/23: New Orleans. Obviously, one of the biggest highlights of October was our trip to New Orleans. I put together a separate post about New Orleans over here.

MAM After Dark Steampunk October 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/28: MAM After Dark: Steampunk.Jake and I have been attending the Milwaukee Art Museum After Dark events regularly ever since we moved to Milwaukee. Steampunk was the perfect theme for Halloween and the current 1920s German cinema exhibit. Our costumes are never exactly the same from one event to the next, but you can see a few more pictures of our steampunk get up in my August 2016 highlights post.

Book of Mormon at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, Milwaukee, WI October 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/29: Book of Mormon. We kicked off the 16-17 Broadway season in Milwaukee with the Book of Mormon. It’s the only show I’ve ever seen three times in three years, and I’d see it again if they brought it back to Milwaukee next year. If you ever get a chance to see it and haven’t already, please get a ticket. For nearly two years, every time someone talked about Salt Lake City, Jake and I would always have to make the joke about how it’s not a real place, it’s a metaphor. Then I kind of forgot about it for a while. Now that we’ve seen the show again, that joke is coming back.

Full Size Candy Bars | https://www.roseclearfield.com

10/30: Neighborhood trick-or-treating. We live in an area where most neighborhoods don’t have trick-or-treating on Halloween, which I find really sad. At least our neighborhood hours ran long enough that kids could trick-or-treat in the dark. This was our first Halloween in this house so I didn’t know what to expect. But we got a good turnout, about 60 kids. I splurged on full-size candy bars. Several kids literally screamed over full-sized Kit-Kat bars. A successful Halloween, right?

What are you up to in November?
Any fun local events I should check out?

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

September 2016 Highlights

Early Fall Backlighting | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Another month has flown by, as always. Today I’m sharing just a few highlights from September.

Silverwood Farm Fall Horse Trials | https://www.roseclearfield.comSilverwood Farm Fall Horse Trials | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/3: Silverwood Farm Fall Horse Trials. I have a family friend who trains show horses. In the 10+ years we’ve known her, we’d never seen her compete.  So we made it a priority and got to the Silverwood fall trials. Many of you know that I’m a city girl. As such, I know next to nothing about horses and am way out of my comfort zone being around and photographing them, but it was so neat.

Wind Point Lighthouse Climb | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/4: Wind Point Lighthouse tour. The lighthouse offers monthly climbs from June through October. It’s awesome to get a brand new perspective of a place you visit frequently. We learned a little bit of its history and admired the sweeping views of the grounds as well as Milwaukee, Racine, and Lake Michigan.

Lincoln Park Kenosha, WI | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/16: Lincoln Park. No, I wasn’t visiting Lincoln Park in Chicago, I was visiting the little Lincoln Park in Kenosha. I had to run a quick errand down that way and stopped over at the park for a bit. It’s home to a beautiful sunken garden. It’s also where Jake and I had our engagement pictures taken just over 10 years ago.

Doors Open Milwaukee 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/17-9/18: Doors Open Milwaukee. The long-awaited Doors Open was awesome. I hit 15 sites in all and would have made it to even more but I had another commitment on Sunday. We had absolutely perfect weather for it, high 70s and sunny both days. I took nearly 1,000 images and will still be sorting through them for quite a while. Over the next couple of months, I’ll have several longer posts with more pictures of select sites here on the blog.

Four Generations | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/18: Joey’s baptism. Our good friends Joe and Melitta had their little guy baptized the same weekend as Doors Open. He was the fourth generation to get baptized in that exact church. I was very honored to help create this image of all four generations.

Flamingo at the Milwaukee County Zoo | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/24: Milwaukee County Zoo. Jake had a professional event in Milwaukee in the morning and then we were going to straight to PetFest (see below). So I went with him and among other things, went to the zoo for a while. It was cooler and not very crowded, and lots of the animals were really active.

Dog Agility Training at Fromm PetFest | https://www.roseclearfield.com

9/24: Fromm PetFest. My littlest sister-in-law is one of the organizers for the Fromm PetFest so we wanted to stop by for a while. It was really neat. They had various events for the dogs (i.e. agility training, lure courses) and tons of vendor booths, and of course, there were dogs everywhere. My mother-in-law came up for it, too, and we went out for pizza afterward.

The MSO at Flux Design | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Finally, this month, I made it to four regular MSO concerts and two neighborhood MSO events. It’s the current director’s last season so they’re pulling out all the stops, and I’m going to as many of the concerts as I can.

What are you up to in October?
Any fun local events I should check out?

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

A Rainbow Over Lake Michigan

Sometimes life presents those moments where you have to drop everything and take advantage of a rare opportunity before it’s gone. Yesterday evening as I was sitting at my desk, I looked out the window and saw a rainbow over the lake. After I did a double take, I grabbed my camera and got outside as quickly as I could.

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

We were blessed with the rainbow for nearly half an hour, giving lots of neighbors a chance to see it before the storm rolled in and then it got dark.

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

The darker it got, the clearer the rainbow shone. As I was walking back to my house, I saw the other end of the rainbow. The clouds weren’t allowing for a full arch, but it was so neat to see even a glimpse of the other end.

Rainbow Over Lake Michigan | https://www.roseclearfield.com

No two days by the lake are ever exactly the same. It’s always neat to see what the current day brings, but some really blow you away. Yesterday was definitely one of those days.

Save

Save

Morning at the Beach

Most of the summer, I’ve been taking my camera to the beach in the evening. Last week I seized the opportunity to take a few pictures in the morning. It was warm and humid with very calm, clear waters. Pictures really don’t do justice to the vast range of colors or the way the water sparkles in the sun.

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Morning at the Beach August 2016 | https://www.roseclearfield.com

Save

Save