Halloween recap {2017}

While I’m very behind in posting about our adventures in Buffalo, I did want to share this year’s Halloween recap with you. Only a month late. Oy.

Michael loves the zoo these days so he celebrated Halloween as Zookeeper Michael! He dressed in his safari khakis complete with a hat, vest, and animal cookies for his friends at school.

Michael’s Halloween costume

Zookeeper Michael

One of Michael’s (and our) friends came over and we trick-or-treated around our neighborhood and met some of our new neighbors, which was nice. It only took us 45 minutes to visit 10 homes. Michael brought his zoo along with him. This was the perfect costume for the chilly Halloween night in Buffalo: Michael stayed warm!

“Trick or treat!”

I did a quick Halloween craft too. It was a Pinterest find and very easy and inexpensive. There are an obscene number of dollar stores here, which I’m getting more accustomed to frequenting for party needs. For this project you need only a couple of supplies: vase (I chose three in varying sizes), googly eyes, a roll of gauze, super glue, and a flameless votive.

Ghost votives!

How do you make these spooky ghosts? 

  1. Clean glass in lower quadrant and eye area with rubbing alcohol.
  2. Glue on eyes.
  3. Place glue in area you’ve just cleaned.
  4. Place gauze on top of glue (don’t glue your finger!)
  5. Wrap gauze around the vase, avoiding the googly eyes.
  6. As you’re reaching the end of your vase or gauze, place a dab of glue.

It’s not a holiday without some candy eyes. I colored my favorite browned butter Rice Krispies treats, added some green candy melts to the stem, and made these magical pumpkins:

Rice Krispies pumpkins!

Finally, what do you think of my cheese plate?! I love it. I also love our new local grocery store Wegman’s– and their orange cheese! It’s kid and adult friendly and was delicious!

Halloween cheese tray

Finally, Brandon and I ditched Michael to attend an adults-only Halloween party! We had a blast as Homer and Marge Simpson.

The Simpsons: Brandon and Megan

I hope you had a wonderful Halloween! I’m already thinking about family costume ideas for next year, so please share your ideas if you have any!!

Still thinking about Halloween? Check out my recaps: 2013 | 2014 | 2015.

(I didn’t do a Halloween recap for 2016!? I’ll get right on it! It was too cute not to share!)

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Fall 2017 TV premiere dates

It’s about that time again: fall TV premieres!!! I don’t know about you, but I’m in a bit of a TV lull, so I’m eagerly awaiting all of the new shows to start and my favorites to return. (Plus, since I use Norwex to clean now, I have even more time for TV!)

What am I watching now? As I write this, I’m watching Shooter (USA), Ballers (HBO), and I keep re-watching Game of Thrones (HBO).  We’re also catching up on Homeland (we’re only on season 4. It’s been awhile since we have had Showtime…) and I just discovered that our new local library has House of Cards (Netflix). We’ll start back on House of Cards once we’re all caught up with Homeland! With Westworld waiting until 2018 to return, and GoT waiting until 2019, I’m hoping I love some of these new shows too!

What will I be watching? Welcome back to my returning favorites:

  • Vice Principals, HBO (Sept. 17, 10:30 p.m.)
  • The Good Place, NBC (Sept. 20, 10 p.m.)
  • The Goldbergs, ABC (Sept. 27, 8 p.m.)
  • Law & Order: SVU, NBC (Sept. 27, 9 p.m.)
  • Modern Family, ABC (Sept. 27, 9 p.m.)
  • American Housewife, ABC (Sept. 27, 9:30 p.m.)
  • Designated Survivor, ABC (Sept. 27, 10 p.m.)
  • Superstore, NBC (Sept. 28, 8 p.m.)
  • Great News, NBC (Sept. 28, 9:30 p.m.)
  • How to Get Away With Murder, ABC (Sept. 28, 10 p.m.)
  • The Simpsons, FOX (Oct. 1, 8 p.m.)
  • Scandal, ABC (Oct. 5, 9 p.m.) Final season!
  • Riverdale, The CW (Oct. 11, 8 p.m.)
  • Mr. Robot, USA Network (Oct. 11, 10 p.m.)
  • Jane the Virgin, The CW (Oct. 13, 9 p.m.)
  • Life in Pieces, CBS (Nov. 2, 9:30 p.m.)

And some of my favorites will be returning midseason:

  • Quantico
  • Nashville
  • Shades of Blue
  • Timeless

What new shows will I be watching? In addition to Law & Order’s new True Crime series (NBC, 9/26, 10 p.m.) and the Will & Grace revival (NBC, 9/28, 9 p.m.), there are a handful of other shows that have piqued my interest. All explanations are from Wikipedia unless noted below.

9JKL, CBS (Oct. 2, 8:30 p.m.)

Josh Roberts, a divorced actor, lives in apartment 9K, with his family living in adjacent apartments: his parents live in 9J, while his brother, sister-in-law, and their newborn baby live in 9L. This unique situation prompts him to set boundaries while bonding with his family members.

The show is loosely based on Feuerstein’s experiences while shooting the USA Network series Royal Pains; in real life, however, Feuerstein lived with his wife 9JKL executive producer Dana Klein while living next to his own family.

(I love Hank and I miss Royal Pains!)

Alex, Inc., debuting midseason

The series follows Alex Schuman, a radio journalist, husband and father of two, who decides to quit his job and start his own company.

A.P. Bio, debuting midseason

Jack Griffin is a philosophy scholar who missed out on his dream job. After that happened, he gets a job at Whitlock High School where he teaches Advance Placement Biology. With a class filled with honor students, Jack plans to misdirect Principal Durbin in order to use the students’ talents to get back at his job-stealing nemesis.

Deception, debuting midseason

After his career as a magician is ruined by scandal, Las Vegas illusionist Cameron Black becomes the world’s first “consulting illusionist” as he works with the FBI to solve odd crimes.

The Deuce, HBO (Sept. 10, 9 p.m.)

In New York, the violence of the drug epidemic is worsening. Twin brothers, Vincent and Frankie Martino, become fronts for the Mob while operating out of Times Square, which is also the home of “Candy,” a sex worker who turns to the now legal emerging porn industry.

For the People, debuting midseason

Set in the Southern District of New York (SDNY) Federal Court, also known as “The Mother Court,” For the People follows brand new lawyers working for both the defense and the prosecution as they handle the most high-profile and high-stakes cases in the country – all as their personal lives intersect.

Ghosted, FOX (Oct. 7, 8:30 p.m.)

The series will follow a skeptic and a genius “true believer” in the paranormal who are recruited by an organization called The Bureau Underground to investigate a series of “unexplained” activities that are occurring in the Los Angeles area, which are supposedly tied to a mysterious entity that could threaten the existence of the human race.

Homemade Project, debuting midseason

It’s going to be hard to watch, since I’m not on it, but I’ll manage… and start working on my application for next year!

Instinct, debuting midseason

A former CIA agent (Cumming) who has become a professor and author is asked to get back into the game when the NYPD asks for help to stop a serial killer.

Life Sentence, debuting midseason

When Stella finds out her terminal cancer is cured, she’s going to have to learn to live with all the choices she made when she decided to “live like she was dying.”

The Mayor, ABC (Oct. 3, 9:30 p.m.) (information from IMDB)

A struggling hip-hop artist runs for mayor to promote his mix-tape and wins.

Reverie, debuting midseason (information from IMDB)

A former detective specializing in human behavior is brought in when the launch of an advanced virtual reality program has dangerous and unintended consequences.

What should I be watching? Let me know if there are any shows I’m missing that you think I’d enjoy!

(Look back at some of my TV viewing plans here: 20162015 | 2014 | 2013)

 

 

Want to clean faster and easier? Join me at my Norwex party!

Please stay seated. And pour yourself a beverage. This party is exactly where you are. No need to go anywhere!

The party will get underway tomorrow (Sept. 5) at 9 a.m. and will continue through Monday, Sept. 11 at 10 p.m. EST. Please feel free to shop here. If you want to join the Facebook party, let me know and I’ll invite you!

Norwex’s mission is to “improve quality of life by radically reducing chemicals in our homes.” You’re on board with that, right?

My latest purchase!: the Household Package

I heard about Norwex products when someone recommended them for cleaning the crayon our of our white carpet. (Thanks, Michael.) Shortly after that, I was invited to a party and just this weekend I received my “household package” (EnviroCloth, Window Cloth, and Dusting Mitt for $52.99 + shipping). I only just remembered I was supposed to use it on the carpet. Trying that now…

I was nervous to trade in my Clorox wipe for my EnviroCloth this evening while prepping dinner (try this recipe, it’s amazing) but that’s why I got them and I will start tomorrow! (I also watched more videos to make sure I know what I’m doing…)

About Norwex microfibers, from Norwex:

  • Removes up to 99% of bacteria from a surface when following proper use and care
  • Contains BacLock® an antibacterial agent for self-cleansing purposes only
  • Helps eliminate the need for paper towels and chemical laden cleaners
  • Significantly reduces the use of costly cleaning products
  • Ultra-thick and absorbent to pick-up and hold more dust, dirt and debris than other cleaning cloths
  • Holds several times its weight in water
  • Made of more than 10 million feet of microfiber for more effective cleaning power

How does Norwex try to accomplish this? Watch to learn more!

View the 2017 catalog here.

And happy shopping. I have my eye on one of their mops!!

Let me know if you have any questions!

Hello, Buffalo!

Hello, Buffalo!

After traveling more than 3,300 miles through 14 states in 11 days, we arrived in Buffalo, NY a week ago Thursday! We finally have internet and once we get a bit settled in, I plan on sharing our epic road trip here.

Until then, I have lots of questions for the Buffalonians and Western New York aficionados:

What is recommendation for best…

  • Fancy dinner out?
  • Take out?
  • Delivery?
  • Deli?
  • Pizzeria: for dining in? for delivery?
  • Park/playground (for a 2 year old)?
  • Favorite tourist trap
  • Gym/fitness studio? Do you have a barre studio here?
  • Summer activity/festival?
  • Fall activity/festival?
  • Winter activity/festival?
  • Spring activity/festival?
  • Winery to taste at?
  • Wine seller? (Why can’t you just buy wine at the grocery store?! WHY!?)
  • Salon? Hair? Nail?
  • Dentist? Pediatric dentist?
  • Doctor? Pediatrician?

We’re living in Amherst, near the Millard Fillmore Suburban, so extra points for answers around where we live!

Thank you in advance!

We’re here!

 

ONE happy camper!

Our little man turned one in September and we celebrated in style: a rustic, outdoorsy, glamping style. Here are all of the details of our big party.

ONE happy camper!

We rented a picnic shelter space on Megan’s Island, in between two large fields and adjacent to a play structure. It was a pretty sweet spot. The only thing that would make it better would have been an infant swing, Michael’s favorite thing to do at the park.

The birthday boy

We opted for the Sunday before Michael’s birthday, which also ended up being the Seahawks home opener. We managed to squeeze the party in between Michael’s morning nap and 1 p.m. kickoff.

Food. We kept the food simple with 12 feet (FEET!) of Subway sandwiches, personal bags of chips, Aunt Nancy’s quinoa salad, and goldfish cracker packets and applesauce pouches for the little ones.

12 feet of sandwiches

Drinks. Since it was at a park, and 11 a.m., we decided to make Michael’s party nonalcoholic. We had a delicious hot cocoa bar and juice boxes for the kids. We offered toasted marshmallow syrup, mini marshmallows, and chocolate chips to customize their ideal cocoa.

Drink station: hot cocoa bar!

Dessert. I made these s’more cookie bars but the real star of the show was the Costco cake. Thankfully Costco makes a cake that was perfect for our party. We got the “over the hill” design minus the over the hill language.

Cake!

We had such a wonderful time celebrating our little guy, ONE happy camper!

ONE happy camper!

A couple of other favorite photos from Michael’s big party:

Cake table & Michael’s weekly photos

52 weekly photos of Michael with the same bear in the same chair

Warming himself by the fire

Snuggles!

More snuggles! Also: the pants that inspired the party!

Post cake chocolate coma

The Handmade Project

Umm… did you know that my wildest dreams might actually come true?! It’s a long shot, but when Brandon forwarded me the application for The Handmade Project, a reality television show about crafting (!!!!), I knew that I had to apply.

It took three weeks for me to perfect my responses to the dozens of questions they asked, find my craft projects and photos, and to film just the right 3 minute video. The stars aligned last week and I submitted my application!

You have to apply to be chosen! Fingers crossed!!

I’ve never applied to a reality TV show before, but I’m guessing it’s a little bit of a popularity contest, so I’d really appreciate it if you could please watch, comment, and like my application video on YouTube, this blog post, and on my social channels. (Links in the top right!)

Who knows… you might be seeing me on the big screen in August!

Here are some highlights of my application, so you can know what you’re supporting:

My PR/introductory blurb:

During the day, Megan Szerwo is a real-life Leslie Knope, making her living working on behalf of the people of the City of Seattle. After hours though, Megan grabs a glass of her favorite red and she gets down to business on her real passion: crafting. A jack of all trades, Megan focuses her attention on party and holiday decor, gifts for new parents, and any and every craft possible with her endless supply of corks. Megan’s three passions in life are easily described: cats, crafts, and carafes! Megan lives in Seattle, Washington with her husband, son, and two cats.

And some of the projects that I highlight:

My Q13 debut!

My small business: Little Britches Bakery

Our homemade wood-fired oven in the backyard

My party pinatas

My mad party-throwing skills

Cork art!

And a couple of projects that are new to you as a blog reader:

Michael’s ONE HAPPY CAMPER first birthday party! I promise you’ll see it soon!

Muzzle Guzzler glassware: coming soon!

Fourth of July onesies! (Post coming only a year late, but in time for 7/4/17!)

Since it’s likely that this show would just perfectly foul up our Buffalo moving plans, it’s almost guaranteed to happen!

Don’t forget to watch my application video, tell all your friends to watch it, and like/comment on this post!

Thank you for reading and your unending support of my creative endeavors!

Megan’s Island: shuffling off to Buffalo, NY!

Buffalo, NY!

It’s official! We’re trading in the grey drizzle of the Seattle area for upstate New York!

Brandon signed the official paperwork this week and come next fall, he’ll be teaching accounting, Michael will be making new friends at a new daycare, and I’ll be spending a lot more time here, on this blog. And on my small business. And working on my real estate license. And, finally, working on even more ideas I have up my sleeve! You’ll just have to keep tuning in to find out!

Since I’ve never left the Seattle-area for more than a couple of weeks at a time, I need your help.

Tell me everything you know about the Buffalo area: favorite restaurants, favorite wineries, favorite spot to see the fall colors, favorite great lake, favorite parks and snow boots, you get my drift. Snow drift. Get it? (For those not in the know, it averages 94″ of snow each year there. That’s nearly EIGHT FEET of snow.)

Tell me all of your tips for moving to a new town. Should I find my new favorite stores and make friends there? Same story but at my new favorite restaurant, wine bar or winery? Should I volunteer?

I’m sad to be leaving my friends and family in Seattle, but nervous and excited about this new adventure. I’m definitely looking forward to spending a lot more time here, with you.

Now, we’re off to shuffle off to Buffalo!