Blog

  • Free Download: ‘Hello, Fall!’ Checklist (3 Colors Brown, Green, & Gold)

    Fall has arrived and to celebrate here’s a FREE checklist featuring sixteen things you can do to welcome the new season.

    Here are some things that you can do to welcome the fall season:

    1. Take out your fall fashions or invest in new ones.
    2. Fill your home with in-season fall florals.
    3. Fill your home with fall scented candles.
    4. Create a fall reading list.
    5. Bake new fall recipes.
    6. Gather wood for the fireplace.
    7. Visit a patch for pumpkin picking.
    8. Create your to-do list for the season.
    9. Take out your thick blankets
    10. It’s soup season! Try a new recipe.
    11. Shop seasonal fruits & veggies.
    12. Pumpkin spice everything!
    13. Indoor and outdoor fall home decor.
    14. It’s sweater weather!
    15. Pull out your fluffy socks and hats.
    16. Start your fall beauty routine.

    fall checklist mommyrandr

    fall checklist mommyrandr

    fall checklist mommyrandr

    Download one or all – they’re FREE!

    Click to download:: Hello, Fall! Checklist (brown) (5 downloads)

    Click to download:: Hello, Fall Checklist (green) (6 downloads)

    Click to download:: Hello, Fall Checklist (gold) (5 downloads)

    Here are even MORE things you can do to welcome the arrival of fall.

  • 13 Fall Baking Recipes: A New Recipe For Every Week of The Season

    Embrace the arrival of autumn by baking something new every week this season with these thirteen delicious fall baking recipes. Yes, I’m aware the season is only 12 weeks but who really wants to wait a whole week after the first of fall to start baking? I love that we can agree the answer is, no one.

    That said, let’s get to baking!

    Fall Baking Recipes mommyrandr

    *Click on the title to get the instructions for these fall baking recipes.

    Pumpkin Caramel Sticky Buns With Pecans


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Sense and Edibility

    Pumpkin Caramel Sticky Buns that are bathed in a gooey, pecan-studded glaze are ready for your fall breakfasts or brunches.

    Cinnamon Sugar Baked Apple Donuts

    Fall Baking Recipes mommyrandr
    Photo & Recipe Credit: The Forked Spoon

    Apple Donuts, a year-round favorite, are especially popular at my house as the temperatures cool and summer gives way to fall. Soft pillowy inside, sweet crunchy outside, these delicious Cinnamon Sugar Baked Apple Donuts are made with applesauce and go perfectly with your morning cup of coffee or fresh out of the oven with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

    Pumpkin Cookies With Cream Cheese Frosting


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Season and Thyme

    These pumpkin cookies are super light and fluffy, a sort of a cross between a muffin top and a cookie. They have all the quintessential spices– cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and a dash of vanilla.

    Biscoff Cinnamon Rolls


    Photo & Recipe Credit: The Six Figure Dish

    Make these warm biscoff cinnamon rolls in under 30 minutes. They make the perfect breakfast or treat.

    Healthy Whole Wheat Pumpkin Oatmeal Muffins


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Piping Pot Curry

    Kickstart your Fall mornings, which these Healthy Whole Wheat Pumpkin Oatmeal Muffins. Made with freshly milled whole wheat flour, rolled oats, pumpkin puree, yogurt along with chocolate chips, these are satisfying goodies that you can enjoy guilt-free.

    Tosca Cake


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Marcellina In Cucina

    This Tosca cake is a Swedish almond cake that combines almonds in a delicious caramelized topping. It’s buttery, moist, and perfect with a coffee for a cozy day in.

    Spiced Apple Cake


    Photo & Recipe Credit: In The Playroom

    This spiced apple cake is so comforting and perfect for fall, served with toffee sauce or custard.

    Mocha Cupcakes With Espresso Buttercream

    Fall Baking Recipes mommyrandr
    Photo & Recipe Credit: Alpine Ella

    Welcome fall with the coziest cupcake – mocha cupcakes with espresso buttercream!

    Apple Dump Cake

    Fall Baking Recipes mommyrandr
    Photo & Recipe Credit: Lemons and Zest

    This easy Apple Dump Cake takes no more than 15 minutes to prep and is 6 ingredients! Made with fresh apples–your favorite kind. Prep the recipe in the same dish you bake it in for less mess to clean up!!

    Pecan Pie Cookie Bars


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Barley and Sage

    I dare say these pecan pie cookie bars are 10 times better than regular pecan pie. A brown butter shortbread cookie crust and a bourbon and Medjool date filling makes them absolutely to-die-for!

    Fresh Plum Cake


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Little Sweet Baker

    This fresh plum cake is soft and buttery. It has beautiful pockets of jammy baked plums throughout and it’s perfectly spiced. Just a few simple ingredients and a pound of plums are all you need to make this delicious and easy recipe.

    Air Fryer Apricot Apple Cinnamon Dumplings


    Photo & Recipe Credit: xoxo Bella

    This easy apricot apple air fryer dumplings recipe teams the fruity taste of apples and apricot with warm autumn flavors. These are easy to make puff pastry dumplings that taste incredible, too!

    Baked Caramel Pudding


    Photo & Recipe Credit: Kidgredients

    This baked caramel pudding is the perfect warm dessert for cooler evenings! Quick and easy to make.

    Happy fall baking!
  • Why Multitasking Can Hinder Living in the Moment and Achieving Peace of Mind

    Humans can truly only focus on one thing at a time. While this is both a blessing and curse, scientists are still unsure of why this happens exactly. Yes, some people would like to be able to multitask better than they are currently able but this might not always provide the desired benefits. Studies, like from Psychology Today, have shown that multitasking causes stress and makes your mind less effective. The more divided and distracted the mind is, the more likely it will get stuck or go off track.

    Now imagine a dog chasing after balls that are being thrown in three different directions. She goes a few steps in one direction, then runs three more steps elsewhere before turning around to go back for the first ball again. In this analogy, you can think of the dog as your mind and the balls as thoughts or distractions. Your ability to focus on a task is reduced the more constantly you shift your attention.

    Achieving Peace of Mind mommyrandr

    Needless Worry

    But that’s not the whole story. Worrying about non-present events falls into the category of micro thinking, and can actually drain your mental and emotional resources. It is not worth the time and effort, so it may be best to avoid the conflict of multitasking that cannot be won. Others might argue that if they can’t use their conscious mind to multitask, then why not employ the power of the subconscious instead? While it may not be obvious, people rely on their subconscious more than they realize. Remember: It’s one of our most powerful tools.

    When answering a question about a past event, people don’t usually have to consciously search through every minute of the past. Instead, the subconscious mind takes over and provides your answer before you’re consciously aware of it—much faster than a conscious search would take. Memorizing facts and actions requires a lot of energy. It doesn’t just take up space in the brain, it also takes a toll on emotions.

    The Mind

    The conscious mind is like the user interface of a computer because it can be manipulated with touch, whereas the subconscious resembles the processor. As automated as your subconscious is, it still needs to obey certain orders. The more complicated the order or task, the more likely it will lock up and freeze.

    For example, after a fight with your significant other, it can be hard to focus on work or sleep. This happens because your subconscious mind continues to think about the past event, sometimes even more so than during the time it happened. The emotional response of your brain then takes up all of your brain’s processing capacity and colors every other thought you have.

    In addition to the present, future time is important too. However, there is a glaring caveat to this statement that needs to be added. While it is important to think about the future, we should really only ever contemplate it on rare occasions. It’s not something we should spend much time thinking about, because just like the past, our future cannot be changed by thinking about it. But what we do in the moment will change it.

    The Future

    One of the worst things you can do when stressed is to think about what could go wrong in the future as the future is out of our control. We only have now. And what we do now, impacts the future. Furthermore, if you break your tasks and challenges into smaller chunks, it will be easier for your mind to deal with them and not just see the larger ones as more stressful. This is a great way to cure procrastination.

    The Zone

    When we focus on one task, even for a short period of time, it has a therapeutic effect. Every single person is probably familiar with the feeling of being so absorbed in an activity that they forget temporarily about everything else. They’re in the zone. This state of “zone” emphasizes maximal attention and enjoyment or pain, depending on the nature of the activity.

    The body uses this principle to reduce pain. When an individual suffers from a cut, burn, or another painful injury, the pain can be reduced by massaging the area around the wound. By causing the nerves to send pulses to the spine region, doctors can often lessen the feeling of pain from injured areas. The psychological effect in the brain is similar. By engaging in what’s going on right now, we can block out other thoughts that might cause us stress.

    Diversions

    The sensation of “diversion”—in some languages, a synonym for “fun”—is the soul of finding peace through focusing on the present moment and not anything else that might cause you stress. The activity does not need to be pleasurable. A simple, mundane task like scrubbing the bathtub will work just as well. Many people find activities like gardening, jogging, sports, or painting therapeutic. Even engaging in their work without any pressure can make them more relaxed. Instead of engaging your physical senses, meditation uses conscious thought.

    Regardless of the method or activity you choose, diversion tactics can be a singularly effective way to live in the moment and achieving peace of mind.

    Achieve Peace of Mind mommyrandr

  • 24 Things You Can Start Doing To Prepare For Autumn

    Summer is almost over so now is the time to do things to prepare for autumn. While Autumn doesn’t officially begin until mid-September it’s never too early to start slowly phasing out summer. Here are some things that you can do starting today to prepare for autumn.

    Prepare for autumn by:

    Doing a closet cleanse

    Take a look at your fall clothes from last year and see what’s worth keeping. Donate or give away in your local ‘But Nothing’ Facebook group what you no longer want to make room for this season’s trends. Don’t go too heavy on certain trendy pieces because you want items that you can continue to year over the next several fall seasons.

    Saying bye to your summer beauty products

    The beauty products you would use in the summer aren’t the same as those you’d use in the fall or winter. Because the fall air is cooler and drier our skin can crack and dry out. So as a way to prevent this you should change your beauty products that focus on hydration and moisturizing to keep your skin smooth and glowing.

    Review your goals for the year (and for the year ahead)

    Take a look at where you are now in the year have you accomplished much on your to-do list? If so, wonderful! Keep up the great work. If not, then now is the time to reassess and make a plan to help you complete those goals by the end of the year – or at least have them started. Also, the start of the year isn’t the only time to make new goals. You can make goals any time during the year. Use this time to look at what you want to accomplish next year and note what you need to do to make it happen.

    Pulling out your flannel sheets and heavy blankets

    I don’t know about you but I love nothing more than getting snuggly under the covers with warm sheets. You may not need both at the start of autumn but you can certainly mix-n-match them until it gets cold enough for both. I’ll sometimes use a regular fitted sheet and a flannel top sheet like a thin blanket. Speaking of blankets, pull out and wash (or Fabreeze) your heavy blankets. Don’t get caught out there in the middle of a chilly night and no blanket to keep you warm. Keep it folded at the foot of your bed for each reach in the middle of the night.

    Stocking up on all your favorite autumn-scented candles. 

    If you haven’t started doing so now is the time to start stocking up on your favorite autumn-scented candles. You’ll be hard-pressed to find them mid-season and if you do all the good scents are usually gone. If you find a new scent you love buy more than one. Don’t leave it thinking it will be there when you go back the next time. It won’t. Trust me. I’ve learned this lesson the hard way.

    Ordering Pumpkin Spice Lattes

    Nothing signifies the impending arrival of the fall season than the annual return of Starbucks’ infamous Pumpkin Spice Latte. While their fall meu comes out a month before fall that doesn’t mean you can’t treat yourself to an early taste of fall. Think of it as a way to slowly say goodbye to the warmer weather while saying hello to the cooler months that are on the way.

    Looking up new fall recipes

    Prepare For Autumn

    As the weather starts to cool, the more inclined we are to stay indoors, which means munching. Use the time indoors to try new delicious recipes that your stomach will love.

    Going on an autumn-themed adventure

    Rent a cabin, go apple/pumpkin picking, visit a winery, go for foliage hikes – all of these are things great things to do to welcome autumn.

    Adding autumn-themed decor to your porch or front door

    Don’t keep the fall decor to the inside of your house. Take it to your porch or apartment door. Hang a fall floral wreath, place a pumpkin or two, or basket of pinecones. You can also bring a little personality to your pumpkins by painting them various colors or adding designs to them. Pinterest has tons of ideas for you to recreate.

    Stocking up on in-season fruits and veggies

    There are several fruits and veggies that come into season in autumn. Fill your cart up with apples, cranberries, pumpkins, butternut squash, beets, cabbage, brussels sprouts, and eggplant. You can get a complete list here.

    Getting a humidifier

    Prevent your skin from drying out by getting a humidifier. I recommend putting it in your bedroom since that’s where we spend the most time. It will help keep your passageways giving you a better nights’ sleep.

    Increasing your Vitamin D intake

    During the summer our bodies get plenty of Vitamin D from the sun but in the fall (and especially in the winter) that isn’t the case. To prevent Vitamin D deficiency you should consider taking a supplement. You can also add more Vitamin D enriched foods to your diet such as salmon, mushrooms, almonds, carrots, and eggs to name a few. You can learn more about Vitamin D intake here.

    Buying firewood (burning or decorative) for your fireplace

    Prepare For Autumn

    I’ve been fortunate enough to have had 2 apartments with fireplaces. They weren’t working fireplaces but that didn’t mean I couldn’t make them appear like they were working. You can stack the logs one on top of the other in the fireplace or display them like you intend to burn them. If logs aren’t your thing you can place oversized candles inside, that you can light, to set a warm and cozy ambiance.

    Replacing your thin summer curtains with thicker heavier ones 

    Aside from putting cute little pumpkins and other autumn decor all over your house make sure you change your curtains. Your thin summer curtains aren’t great with keeping the cold out. By hanging heavier ones, you’ll create a warm cozy environment and save money on your heating bill.

    Taking your air conditioner out the window

    The arrival of autumn means cool breezes. Open the window and save a few dollars on your electric bill by opening the window. Also, by mid-October, you’ll want to turn on the thermostat, and if your air conditioner is still the window you’ll be letting the heat out – and letting the cold in.

    Getting thick plastic for your windows and doorways

    Speaking of a draft house, ever wonder why your house is chilly and you can never figure out why? Check your windows and doorways. Despite them being closed and locked air has still found a way inside. Every winter, usually around January when winter really sets in, I put plastic up to the windows to prevent the cold from coming in. I seal the entire window leaving enough slack for the air to fill it without tearing the tape and boy can I tell the difference, and you will too. You’ll be amazed at how much air is trapped in the plastic and how much warmer your house will be.

    Looking for cracks and plug them to prevent rodents

    I’ve lived in New York City for 20 years so I’m quite used to sharing my city with rodents but what I won’t do is share my apartment with them. When I first move into an apartment I plug cracks and holes with steel wool. Once I’ve settled in at the end of the summer season, I look for new cracks and holes because when the weather drops rodents will look for warm places to sleep. Wearing gloves using a butter knife I rip the steel wool apart and stuff it into holes. Rodents can’t claw or eat their way through it so they can’t invade your space.

    Taking your car to the mechanic for a check-up

    Don’t wait for something to happen to your car for you to take it to the mechanic, especially during the colder months. Get that overdue tuneup, get your quarterly oil change, and check your breaks. This will give you the confidence to know that your car will make it through the colder months without any issue that could have been prevented.

    Treating yourself to a new winter plant

    If you think plants are just for the spring and summer months then you’ve thought wrong. There are a number of indoor plants that thrive during colder months. Treat yourself to a snake plant it naturally grows in drier climates so it can withstand heat from the radiator or space heaters. The ZZ plant can tolerate infrequent watering so if you plan to go out of town for the holidays you won’t have to worry about it when you return. Cast-Iron Plant is another plant that does well in drier climates. Treat yourself to one or two or a few.

    Reading one book from your summer read list

    Remember that summer read list you created but never read anything from it? Now is the time to choose a book from that list and read it. By taking time out of your day to read a few pages you’ll find be done that book in no time flat. If you can get through more than one read before the end of summer even better.

    Creating a fall reading list

    Grab your summer reading list, cross out the word summer, insert fall, and add books that you want to read before the end of the year.

    Getting the flu shot (and your Covid-19 vaccination shot too)

    Flu season is almost here so be sure to get your flu shot. The 2020-2021 flu season was low due to everyone being indoors and masking up. With the reduced masking mandates we could see increased numbers so get your flu shot, and while you’re at the pharmacy get your covid vaccination shot too. It’s been approved by the FDA now so there’s no excuse to not get it – and keep your mask on.

    Getting your body ready for the end of daylight savings

    Daylight savings ends in the fall so it’s best if you get your body prepared for the time change. Start going to bed a little earlier as the fallback time change gets closer so your body is used to the time difference.

    Purchasing your thermals

    Thermals are a must-have to keep warm during the winter season so don’t wait for it to get cold to get yours. Get them now as you prepare for autumn so that you get them before they sell out in your size. I personally don’t wear thermals I wear fur-lined leggings. I wear them under my jeans to keep warm.

    Prepare For Autumn