Monday, October 31, 2011

All Hallows Eve

All Hallow's Eve-eve
On the 30th Burgerville had $1.99 kids meals... hamburger, cheeseburger or chicken strips. They included a tiny ice cream cone for dessert. The little ones sure enjoy it when they are able to go out to eat. It doesn't happen super often. So they are grateful.

Halloween at Head-start
Danika and some of her friends. She got to wear her "princess dress" all day. They teacher said that they could wear costumes as long as they could nap in them. All three teachers look forward to nap time :0)

Pumpkins on the porch
We didn't manage to get all of them carved so the bottom two only have painted on faces. Everyone else did a good job on their jack-o-lanterns.

Boys in costume
Wyatt's costume was a long sleeved t-shirt with a skeleton wearing a vest. It came with a "skull cap" of sorts. Not as creepy as some I've seen. Rowan was an AWESOME Sonic the Hedgehog complete with the spiky blue hair.

Trick-or-treaters ready
These five got to go to a few houses around our block and across the street. It is the first time that we have actually gone to anyone's home for trick-or-treating. Katie was apprehensive at first but got into it by the time we loaded into the van to go over to St Johns
Wesleyan Church for Truth and Treat.

My little helper Elf
This little guy has a pretty bad cold so even though he was dressed and ready to go, he stayed with Grampa and watched football and was fast asleep by the time the rest of us got home.

Truth and Treat
It was nice of Pastor Josh to send out invitations to their celebration. A good time was had by all and they came home with a large quantity of candy in their pails. It is now in individual zip lock bags labeled with their names and set aside for future enjoyment. I'm so happy that the girls were able to reuse their flower girl dresses from Courtney and Charlie's wedding last November. Each one was a princess... Genevieve was Cinderella and Danika was "Princess Star-flake".

Gangster and his Moll
I wish I could post the vertical photo I took of these two. It is adorable! Though this picture isn't too bad either. Fun, fun times.

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Sunday, October 30, 2011

You're never too old...

Learning new tricks
We live in Portland "The city that works". We know this because it is written on the doors of all city vehicles. We are the city that recycles as well and now we are the city that Composts! Every household now has a drab grey pail to put all food scraps and some paper goods into to transfer to our large yard debris cart.
The kids are getting the hang of it... at least with their banana peels. It is going to be an educational experience for the whole family. We need to do this as our garbage will be taken only every other week whereas our recycle bin and yard debris will be collected every week.

I know tons of people already compost to amend their garden soil. We have no garden and haven't learned the science of composting. However we will now be contributing to some sort of gigantic collective urban compost pile. Hope it helps.

"Do you like my hat?"
Alyssa tried this hat on Katie and she turned to me and said "cheese!" and motioned toward my purse where my camera travels. I took it out and Lyssa put a hat on Garrett and we had a toddler moment in Fred Meyer.

Yes, yes, I like your hats!

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Saturday, October 29, 2011

Prelude to Pumpkin Day

Of course it was Pizza Night
We chose to carve pumpkins on Friday evening. A stop at Papa Murphy's and we had a pumpkin shaped pizza for those cheese and pepperoni lovers.

Pile o' Pumpkins
Jess hauled in all of the pumpkins from the porch to warm up before we cut into them. Those pumpkin guts can freeze your fingers off if they are carved right after bringing them in. The babies had a hard time leaving them alone.
A couple of the boys were squeamish about pulling out the seeds. Genevieve didn't have any problems and Katie got right in there helping Danika with her pumpkin.

"Put her in a pumpkin shell..."
Hayden's pumpkin was quite roomy. Garrett wasn't too thrilled with taking a turn sitting in it but Katie was cool with it.

Three of the finished ones
From left to right: Genevieve's, Wyatt's and Danika's. They each designed their own jack-o-lantern faces.

Pumpkin 'stache
Mr Mischief in his pumpkin mustache.

I have a bunch more pictures that I'd love to post but technology has once again struck me a cruel blow. I can no longer rotate the photos I import from my camera onto my iPad. I've been such a whiner since Harlan did an upgrade on the iPad last night and a bunch of glitches have been popping up. Har is ready to ground me from using it. I need an attitude adjustment and just be thankful that I can update the blog at all. Even if I have to settle for a handful of horizontal shots.

Last night's pumpkin carving was great! I will take some horizontal photos of all of the jack-o-lanterns lit for Monday night to post later.

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Friday, October 28, 2011

Two by two

Bucket Buddies
The two youngest kids in the house, at this time, spend a good deal of time together. They are often found side by side up to good and sometimes, no good. Katie can get in and out of many situations at will. Garrett is learning to get in and out of this toy bin. Sometimes not so gracefully.

Chair Chums
When my wingback chairs have their cushion on them, they are too high for Garrett to climb into so he is constantly taking the cushion off and climbing up and sitting or standing on them. I let him and Katie play with my only Halloween decorations the other day. Goofy looking spiders that have a flashing light in their back end. The color changing lights fascinate most kids.
The spiders hang out on the mantle. I didn't realize, until I saw this picture, that Katie and Garrett are even sharing a double photo frame. Their 11 month pictures are up there on the mantle too.

Morning boys
Gar-bear was joined by Wyatt in the early early morning this week.
They are snuggley guys for sure.

Reading to Katie
Garrett climbed down and Katie climbed up. She sat there for a long time with Wyatt pointing out words and reading to her.

Basket Buds
Something new to climb into. I usually don't use low laundry baskets but this one was down in the laundry room and was brought up with a load of clothes to fold in it. It wasn't empty long when these two climbed in and just sat. They are like a couple of cats that can't stay out of empty boxes or paper bags.

Sometimes I think I'm going to end up a "basket case" because of trying to keep these guys from hurting themselves.

On a bright note
I am thoroughly enjoying all the beautiful fall colors on those occasions that I'm out of the house. Can't wait for the trees in front of our house to change color so the kids can play in the leaves for a bit before they (the leaves not the kids) have to be bagged up for recycle.
Autumn is amazing!

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

School Spirit and a sign of the time (of year)

Some schools we support
We have had kids attending various universities and colleges. First Portland Community College, followed by Oregon State University, Montana State University, Walla Walla Community College, Washington State University, Whitman University, & Pusan National University. Only one is featured on our front door in honor of Rylan's engineering degree from OSU.
For the past 7 years we've had students in Connections Academy. It's an online public charter school. We love it!
Our first public education experience was at Sabin Elementary and as I mentioned before, when our kids attended there was no mascot. Now that our grandchildren are students there we are embracing the "Tickle Bee" as the mascot.

Look who flew in from Michigan!
We have our very own Tickle Bee on our front door now amongst the other school clings. A big THANK YOU! to my cousin Deb who saw the photo of the school poster and made this for us. Wyatt and Genevieve were so excited. I like that our screen door looks like a honeycomb for the bee.
Pointing out the placement of our bee.
This sign was purchased when Courtney, Hayden and Cameron were really little. About 12 years ago. We have a new batch of "attack kids" living here. I'm sure when we get our door bell fixed we will see them in full force.

Early Christmas Decor
Joann's fabrics has such fun stuff for decorating homes including our craft areas. I have purchased some fabrics to make flannel blankets for Logan and Lyssa's new baby. I've got to get started sewing (perhaps this week). I hope the family is patient with me gives me grace for the time I spend sewing. It is very therapeutic!

I took the following photos of the flannel pairings that are going to be for Evie.

I want to enjoy coffee or tea under a cozy quilt
I'm hoping to zip up a little lap quilt for the holidays.
Our boys have volunteered to help decorate the house this year. We have some new ideas and want to get them started. I wonder if the extended family that is planning to join us for Thanksgiving will boycott if we have Christmas decorations going up before then.
We've never done it before so I don't know.
Traditions can be pretty strong things.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The last few days of Henry and Belle-belle's visit

Quick trip to Clackamas Town Center
Henry had a couple of coins to use in the candy machine. He was so patient while we shopped in JC Penney. We found some great bargains. Wish we had a Penneys closer to our house.
Happy with his stash.
Ohhing and Ahhing at all the colorful candies.

We decided to feed to boys before we headed home
Sharing meals at the food court.
Sweet little dolly in her car seat.

Evening bath time
Anabelle with her mamma enjoying her bath time.

All too soon it's time to go :o(
Katie is enamored with her baby cousin. She's getting ready for her sister to come. She'll have her very own baby to love.

McDonald's after church
Rowan loves his cousin Wyatt as much as Kate does Anabelle. They are 3 1/2 years apart in age but like a lot of the same things. Sometimes the age difference is more pronounced and then some extra grace is needed. But they are buddies much of the time.
One of the reasons we chose McD's was that the Happy Meals came in Halloween pails. I wanted to have one for each of the kids in case we get to go to a party and get candy on the 31st. The handles of the orange buckets make cat masks as Genevieve figured out.
Danika didn't want to remove the handle.
Rowie looks a lot like Batman rather than a cat-man.
Kate gave the bucket a two thumbs up.
Wyatt became a Punkin Head.

Alyssa only has about 5-ish weeks to go in her pregnancy. She is doing so well. Keeping up with two busy kids and now hanging out with another 6 kids here. She looks beautiful and has that pregnancy glow. She is "built for birthin' babies" as they say... kinda like her mother.

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