Dog Hikes, Pumpkin Patches & Happiness

Happy Monday, Everyone! I hope you all had great weekends. It’s a chilly and rainy one over here, so it’s a perfect excuse to cuddle up and finish my recap post from last week. Sometimes, I need rain to keep me grounded inside. When it’s sunny and warm, I feel like I’m missing out on something, or I should be out enjoying it. So rain is certainly a blessing when I need to stay put for a while.

My week was great. I spent it Uptown with Kyle, and it was so nice to have that extra time with him. We usually see each other on the weekends because of work, so this was a fun change-up. The weather has been insanely nice here. We took advantage of it by taking the dogs on long walks during the evening. Speaking of the dogs, this week has been all about them. If you don’t like dog photos, you may not be a fan of this post because it’s full of them.
It was 44 degrees on Monday morning, and I loved it. After taking the boys on a long walk, I made coffee and finished up some work. This week, I enjoyed the Peet’s Coffee Peetnik Brazil Minas Naturais Blend, and it was so good. I will definitely be buying this again. I love trying new blends, so if you have any favorites (medium/or dark roast), feel free to send me links, or tag me in their posts. 
I love having late breakfasts/early lunch combos. I always have a snack with my coffee first thing in the morning, so I’m always hungry late morning/early afternoon. On Monday, I made a side salad that consisted of sauteed tomatoes, brussels sprouts, and kale. My omelet had one egg and four egg whites with a side of avocado. I flavored everything with garlic powder, chili red pepper flakes, black pepper, onion powder, and Italian seasoning. 
A little later in the afternoon, I headed out for a walk Uptown with Leo. He did so well. 
When he got back, I was gathering my stuff to get ready to head to the park with Grumples. When I went into Kyle’s room, Leo was laying on top of Grumples, and it was so cute! They really are obsessed with each other, and it makes me so happy. 
We have been working with Grumples for a while now. I’ve had trainers tell me there was nothing they could do, trainers who worked with him and nothing clicked, and I’ve been in tears many times over some of Grumple’s behavior problems. Now, I blame myself. I was twenty years old when I got Grumples. He was my first dog, and I pretty much knew nothing about them. We spent almost every day together until we moved to Chicago, where I took up a nannying job. The first year of your pups life is the most important one. It’s where they learn, test, and try to be the dominate one. Not all dogs are like this, but Grumples surely was. His behavior started to change when he was two years old. I could hardly walk him without him ripping my arm off, without him wanting to attack someone, he lunged at bikes, UPS trucks, strollers, rollerblades, anything and anyone! But the crazy thing? He was completely fine at dog parks. He just had serious leash-aggression. He’s fine inside the house; he’s never bit anyone, it’s just the lunging and barking that is scary. Grumples isn’t a small dog either; he’s about 89 pounds and almost pure muscle. Monday was a big day; it was his first time going to a densely populated park and walking like a regular dog. He didn’t lunge, bark, huff, and puff, stalk, or do anything. We walked by other dogs without avoiding them, people strollers, and he is a completely different dog. He’s walking with confidence now, less anxiety, and I think he’s enjoying himself. Believe me, dogs don’t want to act like that, and it stresses them out just as much. I’m so excited to do an entire blog post on how we fixed the issue. I will be honest, we bought beeping/vibrate no-shock collars. There is a method to using them, and they truly made all the difference. This morning, I took Grumples for a walk in a crowd of people uptown, and I wasn’t even nervous to do it. It’s been a long battle, but never give up on your dogs! I am going to write a really thorough blog post and include some videos on how we did it. I had SO MANY messages from people experiencing the same, so I hope it helps! I’m hoping to have it up by next week. 
Not going to lie, happy tears started pouring down my cheeks when I texted Kyle and told him about our successful walk. That’s my boy! 
I guess Monday was all about walks. I met up with Meighan for a long Charlotte walk on Monday night. We stopped at Not Just Coffee for oat milk lattes first! I think I have her hooked on them too. 
Last Fall, Meighan and I would go on fourteen-mile walks because it was so nice out! We already have plans to do it again this year. We did about five miles before making our way back. 
I was so ready for dinner! I whipped up a quick dish and sat on the couch to watch Dancing with the Stars. I just sauteed brussels sprouts, tomatoes, and kale. 
I scrambled up about six egg whites to add to the top. For the brussels sprouts, I steam-cooked them in water instead of using oil. 
Tuesday morning coffee & blogging time! 
I spent all day Tuesday getting things done for the blog. I headed to the gym to walk/jog the track with Kyle that evening. We decided to head to the grocery store on the way back and pick up something quick for dinner. We ended up grabbing random sushi rolls and soup. I mixed organic tomato soup in with my leftover chicken and vegetable crockpot soup I made a while back. You can find that recipe here
I feel like I hit the lottery with this find on Tuesday night, and I’m wondering if I’m late to the game with this one? Dessert Hummus! Holy Moly…We picked up strawberries to go with the vanilla bean and fudge brownie hummus. This was one of the best desserts ever. So healthy too! If you can, look out for this at your grocery store. It’s called Delighted by Dessert Hummus! I can’t wait to find the snickerdoodle flavor. 
After running my errands on Wednesday, I headed out for a long walk and a trip to the vet for Leo! It was time for his yearly shots. He did so well! 
I headed back and made a protein shake for lunch. It had Chocolate Orgain, banana, coconut milk, and ice.
I made one of the best dinners on Wednesday night. Cranberry carrot chicken with roasted veggies! 
And I utilized the leftovers well on Thursday! Leftover roasted vegetables with some scrambled eggs. 
Cranberry chicken on top of some salad before the gym! How about that for a short Thursday recap? 
On Friday night, Kyle and I headed to the tennis courts to play. We hadn’t played tennis in a while, and we were excited to get back out there. We played until way late. When we got back, we made some random dinner because we didn’t feel like going out to eat or going to the store. We had chicken breast with gluten-free teriyaki sauce, rice, salad, and eggs! It was really good. We started watching a scary movie and then fell asleep, so I still need to figure out how it ends. 
We were so excited for Saturday morning! We took BOTH dogs to the Latta Plantation to hike. This was a big day for us because we’ve been dreaming of having well-behaved dogs that we could hike together for a while now. And it was a success. We walked by other dogs, runners, bikers, and Grumples just ignored them. Leo feeds off Grumples, so he was also a good boy! We can now plan more hikes with these boys! We did five miles, and they acted like they wanted to keep going. I was so proud of them. 
We took them on a back trail where it was very secluded and let them run back and forth for a bit. They were so cute side by side. 
This was honestly one of the best days ever. 
Kyle and I headed to the mall later Saturday afternoon so he could grab a new coat. I treated myself to a delicious cappuccino! How cute is this coffee mug? It was at the Nordstrom coffee shop. 
I didn’t plan on buying anything, but these shoes were sitting alone on the shelf and they were exactly my size…
They screamed my name, so I ended up getting them. I love them so much and I plan on wearing them for Christmas. They are called the Pearl Studded Slide Loafers! 🙂 
After the mall, we headed over to grab a late lunch at Whole Foods. My plate had a kale salad with eggs, onion, chickpeas, cucumber, tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, fresh fruit, and chicken. 
We decided to walk over to the Simmons Pumpkin patch and grab pumpkins for carving on Sunday. I had unsweetened matcha tea with coconut milk after lunch. 
There were so many pumpkins to choose from!

Some of you were asking about my shoes on my Instagram story. Here is the link! They are the “blush” color 🙂 They come in so many colors and they are on sale!
Kyle’s goal was to fine the ugliest pumpkin, but mine was to find the most-perfect pumpkin! 
After our little outing, we headed out to the tennis courts to end the night! It was 60-degrees and the perfect excuse to get out and play. We were going to go out to dinner, but I wasn’t hungry and so tired, so the guys ordered wings instead. After showering and walking the dogs, I made my favorite hot cinnamon tea! We started watching 1922, a Stephen King, movie. It was gross, twisted, and weirdly entertaining.  
On Sunday morning, we headed out to my parent’s house to carve pumpkins and have breakfast. My mom went all out! She made muffins, fresh fruit, eggs, bacon, apple crisp, tater tots, toast, baked honey pears with prosciutto, and more! She said she was just in the mood to cook. I didn’t mind because it was so delicious. 
The best part of the meal was the baked honey pears wrapped in prosciutto. This is something you must try! 
She made my healthy blueberry muffins with lemon! I love the mug Land O Lakes sent me! They also sent me pumpkin butter, which was incredible! 
Pumpkin carving time.
Can you tell we are obsessed with our dogs? Kyle made his pumpkin have paw prints, and I made a typical jack-o-lantern with paw print eyes. My dad hooked the electric mixer piece onto his drill gun and cleaned out the insides of the pumpkin. So genius! 
My parents also carved their pumpkins lol We saved all the seeds and I am going to roast them tonight! 
Spray tan my face orange and I fit right in! 
I found about 100 photos on my camera that Kyle took of the dogs. They were so cute! I think Kyle liked taking photos way too much. 
Leo modeling for Kyle! 
We ended up heading to the gym when we got back. I did some weights and walked the track.
I was so hungry and ready for a jumbo salad! I massaged kale with olive oil and balsamic and topped it with grilled chicken, avocado, cucumber, orange slices, figs, tomatoes, blackberries, and onions! SO DELICIOUS. 
Our pumpkins lit up at night! I was so excited to see them. When we were kids, we were too impatient to wait and see them at night, so my mom used to let us light them up in the dark bathroom. Carving pumpkins never gets old!

Questions for you! 

  1. Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?
  2. What are your Halloween plans?
  3. Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans)

Comments

  • Jenn

    Love the Harney and Son’s Hot Cinnamon tea! They also make a green tea version of it- so good!

    Reply to Jenn
  • Nika

    I have the same pair of shoes in a different color! I get so many compliments and always laugh when I tell people they are Dr. Scholl’s. They’re definitely comfortable:)

    Reply to Nika
  • Amina

    Our old dog had some serious behavior issues. Didn’t like new people or dogs. Super protective of us. But we should have trained him when he was a pup so it was our fault.

    No Halloween plans. I’m working.

    Lucky Brand jeans! They usually have a buy 1 get 1 50% off sales. Amazing staff & so many styles & colors. I love mine.

    Reply to Amina
  • amanda june

    you are all just so cute together! (you, kyle & the dogs)…adorable 🙂

    i used to get all my jeans from ae but have had some good luck with express jeans too. we skipped pumpkin carving this year (yours are so cute!) but we’re having a pizza making party tonight with friends and dressing up…snow white and prince charming 😉

    Reply to amanda june
  • Shannon

    So funny. My boyfriend tried to find the ugliest pumpkin his year too!

    Reply to Shannon
  • Nancy

    Where are the green shoes from in your story? Do i swipe up?

    Reply to Nancy
  • Tae

    How old is Leo now?

    Reply to Tae
  • Jenna

    The only issue we have with our dog (almost 2, lab/pit mix) is that she LOVES to eat out of the cat litter box. It’s so gross and we discipline her when we catch her doing it, but most of the time she get’s a big bite then takes it to our bed and eats it there…. so GROSS.

    Halloween day.. I’ll be working. But I’ll probably wear a costume of some sort – and the donut shop down the road typcially gives out a free donut for anyone in costume. That night I’ll probably just stay in and relax.

    I live in Florida so I hardly ever wear jeans because it’s just so dang hot..

    Reply to Jenna
    • Taralynn McNitt

      So nasty lol! But when I was watching Kona (he’s been on the blog a couple of times) he’d run for the cat litter box too! It’s pretty common!

      Free donuts on Halloween? Sounds like the best night ever. I’m just handing out candy this year!

      Yes! Florida is ALWAYS hot:) but it’s a good getaway for me lol

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Kelly

    Your photos are absolutely stunning. I love the hiking ones with your dogs 🙂

    Reply to Kelly
  • Kristen

    I have 2 westies and they are so difficult to walk at the same time, the leashes get intertwined and one is always trying to go faster than the other! I feel bad only walking one at a time :/

    No halloween plans yet! Maybe just a date night and some scary movies this weekend!

    I buy jeans at old navy!!

    Ps I look forward to your recap post every week!!!

    Xox

    Reply to Kristen
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Kristen!

      Thank you for the kind words about my blog! Makes me so happy that you read every week!!

      I don’t know how you walk them at the same time! It took me a while, but now Grumps and Leo finally can go alone!

      Sounds like a fun weekend to me!!

      xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Paula

    Love your post, I was wondering what brand on shock dog collar you used? I’d like to get my golden doodle Lucy one. 🙂

    Reply to Paula
  • Hallie

    I did a paw print on my pumpkin too!

    Reply to Hallie
  • Kristen

    I’m a big fan of your blog!!

    Reply to Kristen
  • Addison

    I’m about to order those shoes. Too cutee! I love all of your pictures, really makes me want to get outside more! 🙂

    Reply to Addison
  • Katie

    Yes, unfortunately. My black lab is 1 1/2 so we are still working on training. We were too relaxed with him for too long. Can’t wait for your post about Grumples!

    I just love all your posts. Please never stop! ha!

    Reply to Katie
  • Linda @ the Fitty

    I really want to be alice in wonderland for my Halloween!

    Reply to Linda @ the Fitty
  • Lisa

    Will you take Grumples to Crowders?

    Reply to Lisa
  • Amanda

    Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?
    My little yorkie has been having issues lately with “expressed anal glands”, causing some pretty nasty infections. He’s finishing up a second dose of antibiotics right now. Praying this doesn’t become a recurring issue!

    What are your Halloween plans?
    No plans. No parties this year, so we are being lame and taking this weekend to clean & do yard work before it gets really cold. We will hand out candy at home on Tuesday.

    Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans)
    My favorite jeans are from GAP. Nothing fits me as well as theirs do – they hug all the right places and disguise the others! 🙂 Recently I have found some Calvin Klein jeans from Costco that I like, for only $20!! (PS They don’t have dressing rooms, but I just take them straight to the bathroom after I buy them and try them on. Then I can exchange if necessary.)

    Reply to Amanda
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Amanda!

      Oh, that sounds awful! Hope he’s better soon!

      I think handing out candy is fun! I’ll be doing the same on Haloween night!

      Thanks for the recommendations!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    Do you use light room for your photos? Anything else?

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Dorothy

    Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?
    Yes! I am currently struggling getting my black lab properly leash trained. He used to be good, but over the last year he’s gotten to where he tugs too much and wants to dart this way and that on the leash. He’s not aggressive, just too hyper. If I tell him to heel, he does, but only for like 5 seconds. I try to take him running with me, because he tugs a bit less when we’re running, but he still wants to dart here and there when he smells something interesting and that can get dangerous for me when I’m running. He’s caused me to stumble quite a few times. I’m hoping your leash training blog post will work for us!

    What are your Halloween plans?
    I’m going to a Halloween party with coworkers this Saturday, then on the 31st I’ll take my 11 month old to two or three houses to “trick or treat” before heading back home to watch scary movies and pass out candy. 🙂

    Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans)
    I like Maurice’s jeggings a lot! I just ordered some Old Navy Rockstar jeans online yesterday… I hope they work for me! I’ve heard such mixed reviews about them.

    Reply to Dorothy
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Dorothy!

      I totally know how that is! I’m excited for you to read the post!

      That’ll be so much fun!!!

      I keep hearing all about ON jeans! Might have to check them out.

      XO

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Sara

    I love Madewell jeans!

    Reply to Sara
  • E.

    Did you cut back on your workouts?

    Reply to E.
    • Taralynn McNitt

      YES!

      I was going to the gym and doing HIIT almost everyday and I was mentally drained and just happy!

      I FEEL AMAZING now that I’m just walking, doing random little weights, and not caring about it! 😉 I’m an active person and love hiking, dog walks, light running, and tennis!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Alison

    I love those Express shoes!

    Reply to Alison
  • Harriet

    Great recap! And congratulations Grumples!!! My dog Mia use to have a few bad habits while walking, she was lunging to cross the road, pulling my arm off etc, but with lots of perseverance, training and trying new harnesses she is a completely different dog, now she sits before crossing the road and waits for commands from me, and she won’t eat for food with out me shaking her paw. For Holloween this year we are having a massive bonfire at the beach plus everyone is dressing up as some thing from the sea. I get my jeans from jeans west (Australian company) they have like 25+ different styles that fit all different shapes and sizes and they are a fair price. Your cranberry chicken looks amazing, definitely going to give it a try! Have a fantastic week!!

    Reply to Harriet
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Harriet!

      Thanks so much 😀

      Oh, bonfires are so fun, especially on Halloween!! I just discovered Reeses PB cup smores! You should try that at the bonfire! so good. Thanks for the jean rec!! Always great to find a nice pair that fit.

      xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Brit

    Do you groom your dogs?

    Reply to Brit
  • Hailey

    Are dogs expensive? I don’t make much but I’d like a dog.

    Reply to Hailey
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Dogs can be SO pricey. You never know what health issue will come up, shots and vaccinations are pricey, vet visits arent cheap, good food is high priced, and they do cost a lot! I have spent a lot of money on the dogs over the years. You definitely need to be financially stable before getting a dog.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Ame

    Where is that coat from? The blue one you are wearing!

    Reply to Ame
  • Anonymous

    Is Kyle a trainer?

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Kelsey

    How old is Grumples?

    Reply to Kelsey
  • Hannah

    What does Kyle do for work?

    Reply to Hannah
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Kyle has a great job, but I love keeping his personal life private 🙂 I don’t mind sharing photos of him and stuff we do together but that’s about it 🙂 Hope you understand! xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    You look 18! What do you do for your skin?

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Carrie

    Yes, my pug is the kind of dog who went to dog school, sat in the circle with her back to the class because she would not participate. Now she is 8 and has anxiety and allergies. She is still my Darla though!!

    We will be taking our two older kids (3 and 2 years old) truck or treating in our neighborhood. We live in a gated community and everyone goes all out and it is a big neighborhood party!!

    Jeans…True Religion. I got my first pair in Vegas 4 years ago and get a pair for Xmas every year. They fit sooo well and don’t wear out to quick. I have a hard time finding jeans that fit correctly and these are great!!

    Reply to Carrie
  • Susie @ Mile High Dreamers

    This post made me so happy! I love animals and I LOVE how much progress Grumples has made. I bet he’s just a happier puppy all around because of it! Pets are honestly just the best thing that ever happened.

    You and Kyle and so darn cute too. And it’s awesome to have a co-pup parent. The support is huge!

    That spread your mom made… EPIC! I want to re-create it over the weekend. Especially the muffins.

    Our Halloween plans are to pass out candy haha. I’m too tired at night to go out anymore!

    J Brand is my FAVORITE brand of jeans hands down. But they’re expensive so I only buy them at The Rack, on PoshMark, or Thred Up. But they fit perfect every time!

    Reply to Susie @ Mile High Dreamers
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Susie!

      I couldn’t agree more! & they always bring so much happiness to our lives!

      Kyle is the greatest and so so so good with the pups.

      I thought we were just coming over for some coffee and eggs, but she went ALL OUT! There wasn’t a pear left lol

      I love passing out candy and I get so tired going out! I get tired simply walking to the grocery store haha

      Thanks for the rec!

      Have a great week!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Jennifer

    I so wish I had a dog! I’m hoping that once I own my own house I’ll be able to get one. I just feel too bad right now living in an apartment to get one. I’m gone all day, then they don’t have anywhere to run around when I get home! Also, what type of doodles are Grumps and Leo? I know there’s different types of doods (F1, F1b, etc.) and I’ve always considered one because I love that they’re hypoallergenic/don’t shed! That would be a must for me since I’m allergic to some animals. I think a dalmatian would be fun, too.

    Since Halloween is on a Tuesday… not much! We were invited to a party on Saturday, but we have a wedding, so we might stop by afterwards! I’m hoping kids in the apartment complex trick or treat.. I love handing out candy 🙂

    My favorite brand of jeans right now is Kut From The Kloth! Specifically the Mia Toothpick Skinny jeans. They’re actually skinny jeans down by the ankle and they don’t stretch out when worn. I LOVE them! Just size down a whole size since they run big 🙂

    Reply to Jennifer
    • Taralynn McNitt

      One day! They are a lot of work and need so much attention, but very worth it. I am in love with dalmations! I don’t see them around Charlotte that much! Such beautiful dogs. They are F1.

      A halloween wedding? thats fun!!

      I’ll check them out!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Ashley

    Have you ever had any issues with your dogs? To be honest, no I have not. I have a boxer named Cassius and besides some normal mouthy puppy things when he was a baby, he has been the best dog ever! He is 5 now. I got really lucky. My husband got his (well, ours now) dog Nalu when she was 2.5. She is an Alaskan husky and he rescued her after she was done being a sled dog. She can be a bit headstrong but overall she is also really good. Just very chatty. LOL. Typical husky. 🙂

    I love how much you love your doggies because I love mine like that, too!

    What are your Halloween plans? HALLLOOOWEEEENNNNN. We don’t have any. We are more fly by the seat of our pants holiday people. Haha.

    Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans). My favorite brand to buy is Hudson because they always fit me so well. They are way too expensive to buy brand new so I usually wait until they are on a good sale at Nordstrom Rack (or on their website). I buy 2-3 new pairs every few years. 🙂 My last pair I found at Nordstrom Rack on a super sale! Normally $180 and I got mine for $49.99. WIN!

    Reply to Ashley
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Ashley!

      That is so amazing:) Some dogs are just so easy and behave so well! You dogs sound adorable! I love my dogs like children!

      Hahaha I don’t blame you! Kyle and I are like that too!

      I need to try Nordstrom rack asap!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Carly

    I think its great that your always trying new coffees. So many people get in a rut and will only drink one kind it seems. I recently started working at a local coffee shop that roasts their own beans and its really made me appreciate great coffee! I wish I had a link to share with you but as of now they only do local orders and retail… so if you are ever driving in Colorado, stop in at Serranos in Monument CO!

    I’m so happy to hear about Grumples progress #ProudBlogReader! Its so great you can now take them both for walks and hikes together! good dogs are happy dogs!! Looks like your hike was beautiful!

    My husband and I actually ended up in Charlotte for a few hours this past Sunday and I fell in love with your city instantly. Unfortunatly we only had a couple hours before our flight so we only got to walk a bit and have lunch at Leroy Fox’s (best mac and cheese I’ve ever had). I can’t wait to come back and go to all of the places on your Charlotte list!!

    I can’t believe I’ve never heard of dessert hummus! It looks amazing! Also, the pears with prosciutto your mom made look amazing! I will have to keep these in mind for thanksgiving or maybe christmas!

    My dog Moose can be a barker… schnauzers were originally used as alert dogs, so he literally ‘alerts’ us to everything… visitors, a bird outside, the wind :P. We’ve been trying to work with him to not bark with a spray collar which seems to help but he’s too smart and knows when he’s not wearing it. We will defiantly be working with him more!

    I must be the crazy dog lady over here because the only halloween plans I have are to dress up Moose and my mom’s dog Howie as batman and robin with bandanas we made!

    I can’t wait to see peoples responses to jeans… I need new ones too!

    Reply to Carly
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Carly!

      Trying new coffees is so fun! It always makes me happy, and I look forward to it every week. I will keep that in mind if I’m ever in Colorado (dreaming of going) and you are so lucky! I’d love to work at a coffee shop!

      Thanks so much!! They are doing so well!! & the hike was lovely.

      Awwwwww yay! Please come back!!! I see Leroy’s everytime I leave barre class. The funny thing is that I have an uncle named “Leroy Fox” lol

      OMG…THAT PEAR DISH WAS INCREDIBLE!!

      & we must live under rocks.

      Yeah, the barking can be frustrating. Grumps used to bark, lunge and go nuts all at once! AT EVERYTHING!

      HAHAHAHA Please send pics!!!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • nicole @ bento momentos

    Lovely post! You look adorable in the picture with the two pumpkins. 🙂 Your mom makes quite a spread. Yum!

    Reply to nicole @ bento momentos
  • Haley

    I’ll be visiting your blog every day looking out for the dog post. Can you tell I’m excited?

    Reply to Haley
  • Siobhan

    Reading your posts always makes me so happy! And your pups are just the cutest.
    For Halloween, my friends and I are gonna dress up in our costumes (I’m going to be Belle from Beauty and the Beast) and go bar hopping. It’s kind of a tradition here in Alaska. It’ll probably be about 20 degrees outside, but still so much fun.
    Also, how have I never heard of dessert hummus before?? I will definitely be looking for it next time I go to the store.

    Reply to Siobhan
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Well that just makes me happy!!! Thank you for putting a smile on my face.

      Awwww you will make a beautiful Belle. You better bring a coat!

      Becuase apparently we live under rocks!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Melanie

    1) We have the sweetest Brittany named Hudson and I have a lot of trouble walking him on the leash because he’s so energetic. He could SPRINT for two hours and never get tired. We take him to a lot of trails/open areas to run off-leash but he gets wanderlust and can sometimes take off after animals if he catches a scent. We have worked hard with training him to “come” and he is usually really good but the other night he took after something and got lost and we were out with flashlights for over 3 hours looking for him! A farmer near by finally found us and said he had him safe and sound! We are now trying out the beep/vibrate collar and are working with training him on that so I can’t wait to hear your tips!! 🙂

    2) Going up North (from Canada) to a cottage with my husband and family and our dog!

    3) I love Old Navy! I found a pair that fits me so well and now they are the only pair I buy!

    I really love your blog and the way you write and everything! Yours was the first blog I ever started reading back in the “undressed skeleton” days and I have started and stopped reading so many others over the years but yours is just my absolute favourite that I keep coming back to every week! I get so inspired by your healthy lifestyle and always get so many awesome meal/workout ideas from it! I really appreciate you being true to yourself and your roots and I love the authenticity of your blog!! Keep up the GREAT work!! 🙂

    Reply to Melanie
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Melanie!

      The brittany dogs are born to hunt, so they are prone to chasing animals for sure! I’m so happy he made it safely home to you guys! That is SO SCARY!! The collar is amazing.

      HOW FUN!!! I bet the Fall leaves are just gorgeous right now.

      I really appreciate the kind words about my blog! That makes me so happy to hear and it just motivates me to keep writing. THere are days where I wonder why I do it and then I get a comment like yours! SO THANK YOU!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Morgan

    I adore your blog!

    Reply to Morgan
  • Gail

    Your cranberry chicken recipe was a hit! I chopped up the chicken and made it look like Chinese food. My teenage kids ate it all up. I also added water chestnuts and green onion.

    Reply to Gail
  • Lace

    Your photos are so beautiful.

    Reply to Lace
  • Meghan Smith

    3) where to buy jeans?

    Honestly I live in American Eagle jeggings most of the time, the fabric has come a long way and they wear great! I get the denim and the colored ones. Right now I have the olive, burgundy and 4 different denim washes. You can also try Old Navy too if jeggings aren’t your thing. 🙂 Hope this helps!

    Reply to Meghan Smith
  • Vanessa

    What are your Halloween plans?
    Probably studying unfortunately. I am close to graduating so its a busy time for me. But to make up for that I will celebrate christmas even more than before!

    Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans)
    I love my jeans from Garcia (not sure if they are available in the US though)

    Reply to Vanessa
  • Teresa @sweettandahoneyb

    Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?
    What are your Halloween plans?
    Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans)

    Hiya!

    We don’t have a dog because our condo doesn’t allow for them – but as soon as we buy the house.. we’re getting a golden retriever. We’ve wanted one forever. I had no idea leash-aggression was a thing. You take such good care of the boys and I am so glad Grumps is behaving on walks/hikes now! It’s all because you didn’t give up on him 🙂

    No plans for the actual holiday but we’re doing a scary movie marathon with friends on Friday (I’m making mummy hotdogs!) and running the Hot Chocolate 15K on Sunday!

    I have a hard time with jeans- but recently Old Navy has been ON POINT with pants. I never used to like the way they fit me but they have so many fits, colors, and styles now (and sales/coupons/Old Navy cash 😉 ) that it’s hard NOT to find something. I love their fall clothes. LOFT also had some good ones yesterday when I went browsing!

    Have a good Tuesday!

    Reply to Teresa @sweettandahoneyb
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Teresa!

      Awww golden retrievers are so sweet. Leash-aggression is a very common thing.

      I am so happy too!:) It’s so stressful when you want to take him everywhere but you can’t, or trying to explain that he is friendly after a crazy outburst. It’s just so much better! 🙂

      Oh yay! That sounds like a ton of fun!

      I do like Old Navy colored/stretch jeans! Never tried their denim! Oh, love love love Loft!

      xo xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Linda @ the Fitty

    What do you do with the remaining egg yolks,Tara? Can you send them to Me?:)

    Reply to Linda @ the Fitty
  • Jordan

    Oh my goodness, your dogs are adorable and you and Kyle make a cute couple!
    Dang, I haven’t been keeping up with all my favorite bloggers recently – I have been so busy! But this reminded me that I miss all your pretty photos.
    No dog problems – I don’t have a dog – just an aggressive little kitty! She likes to play and gets fiesty.
    No Halloween plans… yet. I don’t even know what I am going to be! so sad.
    My favorite jeans are from loft – I used to love Old Navy Jeans, but I haven’t bought them in awhile since I lost weight, so who knows! They are so cheap and good quality last time I checked!!

    Reply to Jordan
  • Natalie

    We had lots of issues with our dogs over the years – it can be heartbreaking not knowing how to fix it.

    One key thing I learned from a behaviourist is that we cannot teach dogs *not* to do something, but, we can teach them to do something we want!

    To reward, reward, reward. And not with any old dog treat, but something high value to them. Something they don’t ordinarily have. I cook up pieces of duck breast, chop into small pieces and freeze. That way, when we start a training session, I can grab a few pieces from the freezer and they defrost so quickly. Also, slices of canned hot dog is a winner every time!

    Also, to give our dogs lots of mental stimulation. For example, if they have dried dog food, rather than feeding from a bowl, toss the whole lot on the garden lawn. Let them sniff it out, work for their food – it tires them mentally, so they are less destructive / aggressive / forceful on the lead etc. They love sniffing for food.

    Reply to Natalie
    • Taralynn McNitt

      I agree!

      That is a great quote.

      Leo is very treat-oriented. You could dangle a steak in front of Grumps and he’d still go for the person on the bike lol So it was hard with him! He had no interest in being treated. We’ve been doing celery and cucumbers and green beans for treats. They love it!

      And I’ve never heard of doing that with the food! So interesting!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Demi

    Love the pictures and the dogs! They make the whole blog. I was wondering if you used a stencil for the dog paws on the pumpkin?

    Reply to Demi
  • Kelli

    We adopted our dog Rollo from the humane society 1 year ago. We love him and baby him so much but he for sure has issues that are difficult to break. He was abused twice by previous owners and in and out of shelters until we came into the picture (he’s only 2…poor baby!). He’s a big boy, 120 lbs., mix between a Great Pyrenees and Tibetan Mastiff which are both independent livestock guardian dogs, so training is difficult. He is WAY aggressive with people when they come to our house, and he’s extra protective of me when I’m walking him alone. We try to work around his behaviors in a way that works for us, him and people we introduce him too, this is less stressful for all of us. So, we introduce him to people outside while on our walks, he reacts better to them this way…and we always have tons of treats on hand so he’s intro to new people is smoother. We also walk him in more secluded areas so he can actually enjoy his time out of the house and wont be so on guard. Fur babies…gotta love ’em!

    Reply to Kelli
    • Taralynn McNitt

      That is so sad to hear, but he’s so lucky to have you! How could people abuse animals?!

      I used to scope out secluded areas for Grumples and would never dare go somewhere with people. It’s nice that I can now!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anonymous

    I tried the hot cinnamon tea after you recommended it & it is so delicious!!

    Reply to Anonymous
  • Mindy

    Hi Taralynn! As always, I loved reading about your week. I just wanted to leave a coffee recommendation for you. I live in New Mexico and Pinon Coffee is our local fave here. I recommend the Adobe Morning as a great medium roast. After having Pinon, I can’t go back to any other coffee. Here is the link if you are interested! https://nmpinoncoffee.com/products
    Hope you have a great week!

    Reply to Mindy
  • Sarah

    I have to say, we have had two labs (we got one as a puppy and one as a senior, both rescues) and they have been so easy to train. When we got Abby as a puppy we trained her not to go to certain parts of the house with carpet and all we had to do was say no. Fletcher found us as a seven year old and it kills me not to know about his past, but he has been such a well-mannered guy.

    My fiance and I are spending Halloween with my grandparents. My grandpa has dementia and gets a little anxious with new people so we want to keep him comfortable. My grandma is so excited to hand out candy. They have been setting up a “Pumpkin Man” on their porch and talking to kids through it for about 40 years. It is a bit of a legend in town.

    Old Navy’s men’s skinny jeans have been a godsend for my body type. They are super cheap! They fit in the legs like women’s skinny jeans, but have a higher waist like a boyfriend jean. Also, you get men’s pockets which is pretty empowering.

    Reply to Sarah
    • Taralynn McNitt

      That is amazing! Some dogs are just so easy and then some love a challenge!:) Leo is definitely easier, but we’ve tried to do everything right. Taking all the precautions.

      That is so sweet of you two! That is wonderful. Enjoy that time!!

      That’s crazy! I may have to check them out! I can’t do the boyfriend jean trend. My butt is too big for them and I look hilarious!!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Haley

    Where is your sweater in the pumpkin pictures from? I’ve been looking for a soft pink sweater.

    Reply to Haley
  • Katie

    Awww so cute and so many good eats… yum!! I’m so glad you guys had a successful walk!! 🙂 This looks like such a fun filled weekend!! My fave place for jeans is always American Eagle!

    Katie | http://www.meshkomoments.com

    Reply to Katie
  • Chasidy

    Your pumpkins made me laugh! You and Kyle are sweet together.

    Reply to Chasidy
  • David

    I can’t wait for your dog post. Our two doodles are very aggressive on the leash!

    Reply to David
  • Petra

    Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?
    One of our first dogs (I was very young) loved to steal socks, slippers and pyjamas and to guard them ferociously. I can’t count all the times I had to distract her with food to get my clothes back! When she was young, she also had the tendency to bite when we wanted to give her a hug (I still have a scar on a finger). I think she didn’t like to be surprised (that’s how I got my scar) and, maybe, wolf blood still ran in her veins (and she was a poodle…). Except that, it was the best dog you could find, who loved to fetch. We could even walk her without any leash!

    What are your Halloween plans?
    I will be on recuperation time (night shift at work!) so it’s gonna be pretty simple : some horror movies and a lot of sleep!

    Where do you like to buy jeans from? (needing new jeans)
    I’m a huge Levis fan. This is the only brand which fits my body perfectly.

    Reply to Petra
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hahahah Leo does that. I can’t help but find it cute. I correct him of course but he only takes my stuff, not Kyles. Leo is great like that too and we certainly got lucky!

      Sounds like a great way to spend halloween! Horror films? count me in.

      I love Levis too!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Shyann

    I read that you massaged KYLE with olive oil and Balsamic… instead of KALE… I just thought that things escalated really quickly!

    Reply to Shyann
  • Kat

    Love the pictures of your doggos! They’re adorable and you can never have too many. Honestly, my sister’s dog (Mina) is a German shepherd/Husky/Border Collie, and she can be a handful, she is one. She gets really anxious when she meets people and sometimes it scares her. We try to take her out and meet other dogs so she’s getting better, but we have to have patient. My dog, Lady, is fat so we’re trying to get her to lose weight. She eats the puppies food when we’re not watching.

    Reply to Kat
  • Dayia

    I made your pumpkin pie recipe last weekend. Great recipe!

    Reply to Dayia
  • Kelsey Weissner

    Hi Taralynn! Looks like you definitely had an amazing week 🙂 this weather is my absolute favorite (sunny and in the 60’s here in Maryland) and that alone seems to make me consistenly happy every single day haha!

    I don’t have a pup yet, so I’m looking forward to reading about your experience. Halloween is actually my boyfriend’s birthday! So I’m taking him to a nice steak house in downtown Baltimore to celebrate. Just give him a steak and potatoes and he’s happy lol! What are you doing for Halloween? As for jeans, I’ve had decent luck at Old Navy! They have a bunch of different fits/cuts/colors and most of the time they have some sort of sale going on. All of their jeans are more on the stretchy side and they’re super soft which is why I like them so much. I hope that helps! Have a fabulous week xoxo Kelsey

    Reply to Kelsey Weissner
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Kelsey!

      It was indeed.

      Sounds like amazing weather where you are!!

      Oh fancy!! You are a great girlfriend. I am doing NOTHING for Halloween. Just handing out candy and I can’t wait! lol Wow everyone is suggesting old navy!!! Gotta go try them.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Dana

    I love dessert hummus. I’ve had Hope foods chocolate coconut and when I lived in Colorado there is a bakery that sold “petit fours ” made from chickpea flour at Whole Foods, they are amazing! I couldn’t re-create them though and haven’t seen them since.

    Halloween: Making a big batch of posole and watching horror movies (I’ll probably be done with Stranger Things new season by then) and eating real Reese’s peanut butter cups. Sometimes only the real thing will do.

    Jeans: I’ve had the best luck at Madewell, they’re pretty expensive but a good deal if they’re marked down with extra % off.

    Reply to Dana
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Apparently, I’ve been living under a rock!

      OMG your Halloween sounds like a blast and so festive! Love it.

      I’ll check them out!! Thank you!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Caroline

    Gap jeans are the BEST jeans!

    Reply to Caroline
  • Jazzy

    Cute shoes!

    Reply to Jazzy
  • Mallori

    -Banner is terrible in the car!! 🙁 He can never relax- only when he has played so much with other dogs can he finally lie down in the car and relax….for a few minutes! He whines the entire time, and it drive me crazy!! :((

    -I will be camping in the mountains this weekend for Halloween, and then passing out candy on actual Halloween. Halloween just sprang up on me! I still cannot believe it is the end of October!! I planned nothing!! NOO!!

    -I’ve had great luck with all the jeans they send in StitchFix! I also love TopShop Jeans- you can find them at Nordstrom- Nordstrom has great jeans all around.

    Reply to Mallori
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Hi, Mallori!

      Is it car anxiety? Have you ever tried a thunder shirt?

      OH SO FUN!!!! I’ll be in the mountains too!

      Yes, I’ve had great luck with Stitch Fix.

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Jacky

    I usually buy Guess Jeans, I find them the most comfortable, otherwise I would live in leggings! But the Guess Jeans that I have are just as comfortable as leggings.

    Reply to Jacky
  • Danielle

    Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?

    My dog only weighs about 4 pounds (he’s a yorkie), so it’s almost difficult for him to cause problems for anyone haha! He’s honestly such a great little guy. He isn’t the typical yappy small dog and I will be forever grateful for that! haha!

    I live in Nashville and for Halloween my boyfriend and I are going downtown to hang out. We are dressing up as Sara and Stepdad Gary from Jimmy Fallon’s Ew! skit. If you haven’t seen it, you have got to check it out. It’s hilarious!

    I used to buy all my jeans from American Eagle until I tried on a pair of jeans from Express, since then I haven’t bought a single pair of jeans from anywhere else. They fit so well and seem to never wear out. I have a pair that I bought about 5 years ago and they look like they’ve never even been worn. It’s amazing! They’re a little pricey, but so worth it! At random times throughout the year they have a buy one, get one 50% off sale and I try to rack up during that sale! 🙂

    Reply to Danielle
    • Taralynn McNitt

      4 Pounds? My dog’s toe weighs more than that lol

      How fun! I need to make it to Nashville soon. Have so much fun! Please send me pics of your costume!!

      I never mind buying pricy jeans because you can wear them all the time! They get their use!:)

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Anastasia

    Hi Taralynn, I have been following your blog for a while- about 5 years now I believe! I even was a vegeterian and switched over to eating chicken and going more low carb because of your changes 🙂 I just I wanted to say that I’m really looking forward to your post on what helped Grumples. We have a 1 year old German Shepherd pup who is exactly the same way and we have spent thousands of dollars on training and nothing has stuck. Thank you in advance for any guidance!

    Reply to Anastasia
  • Emma

    I just loved this post, Tara! I was watching the 1922 movie last week too; all the rats, yuck!!

    We definitely have some leash aggression although its getting better all the time. Cant wait to see your post about training Grumples (that is the cutest dog name btw lol!)

    I have noticed you have so many cute coffee mugs!! It makes me wanna buy some new ones for myself! 😀

    Also I would really like to hear more about all the different places you have lived in! Can you do a post where you compare the cities or tell the hightlights of each place?

    Reply to Emma
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thanks, Emma!

      Ewwww all the rats!!! I’ll never get the image of the rat coming out of that lady’s mouth…yikes!!!!!!!! The only acceptable rats are from Ratatouille! 🙂

      Lol I have to get rid of a lot of mine all the time! Good Will got about twenty of my mugs last year!

      That could be a fun post!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Nicole

    I can’t wait to hear about how you tamed Grumples! My 5 year old beagle/shepherd mix has the same types of issues. He’s incredibly friendly but for some reason on walks he goes crazy at everything. It’s embarrassing and frustrating, but he’s so good otherwise! I also have two dogs, and my little puggle feeds off of him and then they both start going crazy. I’ll try any suggestion!!

    Reply to Nicole
  • Bethany @LuluRuns

    Girl, these photos of you are so gorgeous! <3 Looks like the perfect fall weekend. Also, your salad game is ON POINT. Hope you have a great week!

    Reply to Bethany @LuluRuns
  • Mallory

    I loved this post so much and I am really looking forward to reading the next one about Grumples.

    We are currently having problems with our 1 year old Golden Doodle on his walks. He does completely fine once a week at daycare and with other dogs but it’s just what you said, when we go on our walks he turns into a crazy dog and wants to bark and see everything that moves by us. So I am very much looking forward to learning hopefully some tips from you. We are spending our Halloween this year passing out candy since it’s the first year in our house and we are looking forward to it! Old Navy (in my opinion) has amazing jeans! I just bought some cute cropped/flare jeans from there this past weekend, and they usually have really good sales. 🙂

    Reply to Mallory
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Thanks, Mallory!

      Crazy, but I hear a lot of the goldendoodles doing this and then some are the complete opposite.

      I love passing out candy! Can’t wait to do the same.

      That’s what I’ve been hearing!!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Amber O.

    It’s such a great feeling when dogs finally behave! I have a German Shepherd mix so she is overly protective and it stresses me out. I’ve learned that when I show my anxiety she picks up on that. So I try not to freak out in social situations and she does a lot better. So excited to read your post about Grumples!

    Your salads always look so yummy. Do you prep all the meat and cut veggies ahead of time or right before? Also is there a meal template you try to follow when throwing together dinner?

    Thanks for sharing your life! Hope you have a fun. Halloween 🎃

    Reply to Amber O.
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Yes! An amazing feeling. Dogs can definitely pick up your feelings through the leash. It’s hard to remain calm when you think something is going to happen. It’s just a cycle. The more confident you are, the more confident your dog will be.

      I don’t! I actually just keep all the ingredients in my fridge and use them up in salads, stir fry, or omelets! I used to meal prep my salads like that though!!

      xo xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Charity

    Loved the post! <3 This may sound weird, but I realllly love getting my jeans from Target. The Mossimo brand fits REALLY well. I'm the type of the person that I don't want my jeans stretching out and being saggy after one time of wearing them. These jeans always bounce right back to their shape and fit perfect every time.

    Reply to Charity
  • Emily

    1. We recently just rescued a 9 month old lab from the animal shelter and are working with a trainer to fix some behavioral problems. I’m currently so stressed out because he barks his head off at other dogs when walking by on a leash. We’re hoping we can fix this soon. My parents also have a 10 month lab and I’d love to be able to take him over there and have them play.
    2. No plans yet!
    3. You should try Article of Society jeans from Nordstrom! I LOVE them and they are inexpensive!

    Reply to Emily
  • mallory

    you’re so pretty! you look so much like emma watson in the photo with you and the pumpkins 🙂

    Reply to mallory
  • Amy

    The Latta plantation looks gorgeous. Congrats to your pups! Thank you for not giving up on him.

    Reply to Amy
  • Linda

    The pumpkins turned out great! Your mom made a great breakfast and I will try out the pear dish! Great idea.

    Reply to Linda
  • Myriam

    1) Have you ever had any issues with your dogs?
    Unluckily I’ve never had a dog, but I’d love to have one and call him Ziggy or Bowie _<

    Have a great week my lovely 🙂 Love your recaps!

    Reply to Myriam
    • Taralynn McNitt

      Cute!:) Maybe one day!!

      xo xo & thanks for reading!

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
      • Myriam

        Oh nooooo, my comment was cut! :O I said lots of other things, in fact I replied to your 3 questions… I don’t know what went wrong 🙁 Half of the message disappeared, even a part of the first answer, in which I said Grumples is the most adorable thing. You must have t hought I was crazy to leave a stupid comment like that xD

        I’ll try to remember what I had said:

        2) Here in Barcelona (Spain) Halloween is not really a holiday, but I’ve always LOVED IT! I’m not sure if I will carve a pumpkin, but my bf and I will go out to dinner and watch a scary movie, probably The Cabin in the woods.

        3) I hate trousers in general, especially jeans xD I only wear leggins or dresses/skirts… But I will mention the brands I love anyway: Killstar, Restlye, Punk Rave… And for shoes Demonia and New rock 🙂 All of them are goth styles!

        By the way, have you watched Big Little Lies? It’s a miniseries with Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley and Reese Witherspoon, among others. It’s SOOOO GOOD! 🙂

        Reply to Myriam
        • Taralynn McNitt

          Lol, I didn’t even notice!!

          I haven’t seen that movie in a long time! Great one for Halloween!

          Omg I’ve never heard of any of those lol

          GIRL, LOVE THAT SHOW! Watched it in one day!

          Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

    So envious of all the pumpkin patch visits all you US people have. I wish there were pumpkin patches in Hong Kong. Looks so fun!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

    Reply to Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
  • Anna@Actively Anna

    Oh my goodness, I am so happy for you guys that Grumples is doing so well!!! My sister has a puppy that is about 9 months old and she is part great pyronese so she is already just HUGE. And my sister has put a TON of work into training her to be calmer on the leash and such. So I definitely understand the struggle there. The hike truly looked like a perfect day for your little family 🙂 Also, all of your coffee pics make me so happy because have a huuuuge obsession with cute coffee mugs! Loved this post! PS the picture of Grumples sitting like a person in the car with the hat on… I can’t stop laughing I love it so much! <3

    Reply to Anna@Actively Anna
    • Taralynn McNitt

      9 months is the time to really focus on doing the training!

      Hahahaha he let me keep that hat on him for about ten seconds!!:) He knocked it off with his paw!

      Thanks for reading, Anna!! I always enjoy your comments! xo

      Reply to Taralynn McNitt
  • Alli

    Kyle and the dogs 🙂

    Reply to Alli

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