Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

The kids are at their dad's for Thanksgiving this year so we had our big family meal a day early.  I wouldn't call myself very domestic by nature (at least not in the kitchen), but I'm getting better at it, and this year it was even fun.  The kids helped me plan a menu full of things we loved.  It was eclectic, but it worked!  We had:
  • lasagna (a fan favorite at our house)
  • garlic bread (because it actually goes with lasagna, unlike much of the rest of our menu!)
  • green beans (since we had to have a veggie, and this is the only one Chloe will eat)
  • candy apple salad (since we had to have a fruit, and apples are the only fruit Chase will eat... and since it's covered in brown sugar, cream cheese, cool whip and candy bars, you really can't go wrong!)
  • pumpkin cheesecake (it's one of my staples, and the kids weren't so sure about this choice at first... but I convinced them to trust me, and in the end they loved it!)
  • egg nog (Chase was really the only person who drank it, but it was on the menu nonetheless)
I started cooking last night, putting the lasagna together and making the cheesecake.  I dug out the only apron I own... a Halloween one my mom made me a few years back:

Chloe helped me finish things up today.  She loves to help in the kitchen and I never thought I would say this but it's becoming our "thing," to cook together:

The kids loved it and we stuffed our faces!

Floating over the table are the decorations we made... cards with some things we are thankful for.  That part of our day today was really sweet, and I think I may make it a Thanksgiving tradition.

Happy Thanksgiving!


Monday, November 24, 2014

Chase's School Picture - 2nd Grade

Here is Chase's school picture.  My baby boy is growing up!  Please respect copyright.  Thanks!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Family Photo Day

We had family photos taken again this year. I can't wait to see how the professional pics turn out.  In the meantime, here are a few we took ourselves. First, I had to get a shot of my daughter's adorable curls:

And then Chloe wanted to take my picture:

This one was taken at the park (Red Bud Isle):

And of course we had to do our obligatory family selfie!

Can't wait to share the professional pics!


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Chloe's Kung Fu Graduation (Gray Belt)

Chloe is in Kung Fu and she LOVES IT. She graduated to her gray belt and though I couldn't be there, her dad took pictures!

Congratulations to my tough girl!!


Sunday, November 2, 2014

Fall Festival

We went to the Fall Festival at Hawaiian Falls yesterday.  It was pretty dead, which was nice.  No crowds to worry about, the kids could run around everywhere without me worrying....  It was a nice, relaxing time.  They hoola hooped for a really long time...

...and played in the bouncy houses:

They also did crafts and we took some fun photos.  Notice Chase is wearing the base of his Halloween costume.  He was sure people may recognize him as the cool wither kid from the night before, because he got so many compliments while trick-or-treating!

It was actually a cool day that felt like fall, which I really loved.  Fall is the one season I really miss about living up north.

Happy Halloween!

We had such a fun Halloween this year!

My Halloween adventures started when a couple students invited me to a haunted house they were performing in. I pictured a small mom-and-pop production full of kids trying to be scary, and I told them I'd be there Friday,  Then they said, "You better get tickets fast! They sell out!"

Tickets ahead of time? For a little haunted house? OK.... So I got online and there was ONE LEFT... for $35.00! "Hmmmmm...," I thought. "Maybe this is a bigger haunted house than I thought...." I grabbed the ticket before it disappeared (already a little freaked out about going by myself).  Then after purchasing I was informed of a couple little details they failed to mention when they begged me to come: #1, They can TOUCH YOU! That is usually where I draw the line. I don't like people in my personal bubble. THEN I realized I bought the "red level" ticket, which means that not only would I be pawed at, blood and guts were going to be thrown all over me. Let me just quote the website here:

"Think you're brave? SCARE for a CURE is proud to announce Red Level Tickets. Individuals who wish to more actively participate in their haunted adventure are encouraged to consider Red Level tickets. This experience will be more extreme, more physically challenging, more intense, MUCH more messy, and much more fun for adventurous individuals! Please leave your nice clothes at home and come prepared to walk, run, crawl, and get really, really dirty and bloody. Hot tip for Red Level guests: our Gore-Guard Coveralls are a great way to protect your clothes from blood and gore!"

I will be the first to admit I was terrified to go.  They sent us through in groups of 6.  The other 5 people in my group all came together (a family and another couple they knew), and I made sure to introduce myself right away as the random stranger who would definitely be pawing at them throughout the journey.  They were very sweet, called me crazy for being there by myself, and adopted me.

In the end, not only did I survive... I conquered (and it was so fun)!!!!

I didn't walk away without battle scars, though.  In the room with my students in it I totally fell somehow when the zombies attacked, and the family who adopted me had to literally drag me out!  I was bruised up pretty bad, and came home looking like this:

Like every year, I made my kids' costumes (because I feel like it's my motherly duty, and it has become a fun challenge for me... figuring out how to make their costumes without having to actually sew)!  Every year I pray they choose something that isn't impossible for me to figure out.  This year Chloe wanted to be Princess Celestia (from My Little Pony):

And Chase wanted to be a Wither (from Minecraft):

I have been super busy lately so I put these costumes off longer than I should have.  The night before Halloween I inhaled a quick dinner and then went straight to work.  The kids got their jammies on and brushed their teeth and were all ready for bed when I turned around to see our three uncarved pumpkins still sitting on the kitchen counter.


So of course we had to carve them!  I put them in charge of gutting their own pumpkins while I worked on costumes.  Our "project table" was quite the mess....

But the kids had fun with it!

We even managed to get Chloe to put her hand in the gut-filled pumpkin (I couldn't believe it)!

I kept the kids' abreast of my progress as I made the costumes.  When I showed Chase one of his main pieces his eyes got really big and he said, "Mom, I love it when you make our costumes.  You're like an artist!"  Proud mom moment, for sure.  I know the day will come when they don't think it's cool anymore to have home-made costumes, so I'm going to enjoy this while I can!

I was so focused on my costume building that I even let them carve the pumpkins themselves (with the tiny "saws," of course... not the steak knives)!  Chase helped Chloe, which was very sweet to watch:

Of course they couldn't do it all, so I sent them to bed after they were done designing and I carved what was left.  Or at least attempted to.  This is what I found when I got to Chloe's pumpkin:

Ah, well.  I did what I could!

I finished the kids' costumes after midnight, but I was pretty proud of the way they turned out.  They were so excited to wear them the next day when we went trick-or-treating:

They loved them so much they had to wear them the next day, too.  Chase took his wither heads wherever we went the next day, and even slept with them:

Chloe informed me that next year for Halloween she wants to be Shamu, and I really hope she changes her mind in the next year because I have no idea how I'm going to pull that one off!

Happy Halloween!

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