Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween everyone! I know this isn't the kids' first Halloween, but it kind of feels like it. Last year we dressed them in costume, and technically the had a costume the year before too, but this is the first year they can really enjoy it. I may have enjoyed it more than them, but they seemed to thoroughly enjoy everything about today. We started our morning with pumpkin spice pancakes topped with Nutella.

Since a monsoon decided to try and ruin Halloween, we spent all day inside. I just finished dying the kids overalls yesterday, so we tried out their costumes for the first time this morning which they were very excited about. Their morning was so exciting that they both took a 3+ hour nap. That's unheard of in this house.

When they woke up we had sausage mummies for dinner and got ready to go trick-or-treating. We tried convincing Tyson to come with us, but he wasn't feeling it.  The weather had slowed to just a mist when it was time to head out. We took a few pictures and then we were off.

Mario, Luigi and Princess Peach. They are seriously the cutest ever!

Rob only got to come home from work long enough to see the kids in costume and snap a few pictures for us, so it was just the kids and I for trick-or-treating. In the 15 minutes it took us to hit up the six house on our street with lights on, the rain went from misting to a steady rain. When we got home I handed out candy to trick-or-treaters while the kids ate their 6 fun size candy bars.

The rain was back to a steady downpour within just a few minutes of us being home. I'm so glad there was a small break in the weather so I could take the kids trick-or-treating. I wish I would have had the chance to get some better pictures. I didn't want to take my camera or phone out in the rain. Oh well, at least we got a few. 

I loved watching them figure out what to do with their buckets and candy. By the time we hit the last house on the street, they had it down. I'm already looking forward to next year when they understand things even more. 

I hope everyone had a great evening, and for those of you who had trick-or-treating rescheduled due to weather, I hope you have a great time this weekend. I am now watching "The Lost Boys" while I finish up this post.  Perfect end to a great day.  Happy Halloween!!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Our Weekend

The kids and I had to go into work for a little bit on Friday evening to close up shop, so our weekend started at 6pm on Friday. We had some Chipotle and a salted caramel pumpkin concrete mixer from Culver's once we got home.  Harrison decided he was all about my corn salsa and stuck his hands in the container.  He then ate salsa piece by piece until it was gone.  This was after finishing his quesadilla and an entire cup of guacamole.  

We watched the last 15 minutes of Cinderella while we ate our concrete mixer, it was delish by the way, and then it was time for baths. While they were in the tub, I was picking up their toys and thinking, "It's great that they're old enough now that I can pick up their things while their in the tub." I can hear them playing and check in every minute or two and know they're fine. 

I went to check in on them and imediately saw that one of them had committed the ultimate bath time crime.  I had to get both of them out of the tub and into the tub in the master. For some reason they hate being in our tub, so tears and screaming began and it became a race to see if I could get them clean before one of them climbed out of the tub. Thankfully we all survived and after a bath in bleach, so did their bath toys.  Time for a beer for mommy. 

This was the last weekend to get out and do fall things, so I planned a trip to the corn maze and a stop for hayrides on Saturday. We made the 30 minute trek to the first farm to do the corn maze.  When checking times on Facebook I must have got the the two farms confused, and we showed up an hour early.  We went into the little town nearby and found a diner to have lunch.  It was the perfect way to pass time and the food was pretty good. When we were done it was almost noon and time to get back for some corn maze fun. 

It was really cold and windy on Saturday so they were all bundled up in winter coats and hats. I just layered on my Under Armor since I'm not ready to break out my winter coat just yet.  The corn blocked most of the wind and it was really enjoyable in the maze.  H and B were running around having a grand time. I was so glad we decided to do this.  

Then we made it to the back corner of the maze and both kids gave up on life.  They refused to walk anymore. B laid down in the dirt and would not stand up. We were about 10 minutes, a third of the way through the maze, so going forward wasn't an option. I tried giving them both a few minutes and then walking back. Nope.  They still wouldn't walk. I picked them both up and started carrying them back. We found a little spot to sneak out of the maze that gave us a straight walk back to the van. Unfortunately it was in tall grass right next to a busy road and the van was at least 100 yards away. 

We had to stop on our walk back, carrying two 25lb toddlers is a workout, to rest my arms, but we made it back no worse for wear.  The kiddos both passed out on the way home which then equated to no real naps on Saturday.  Thankfully the lack of naps didn't turn them into little monsters for the afternoon. 

We went to Hilger's for hayrides and the kids loved running around.  There were hay mazes, wood mazes, a corn maze that was much more their speed (I wish I would have know about the 2 minute corn maze before our morning outing). 

While we were waiting on the tractor to get back, I went into the barn to get us a cookie and some hot cider.  It was then that I realized I lost my cash. I checked the van, retraced my steps, nothing. We ran to Target, about a 15 minute drive, to pick up a couple things and get cash. We made it back just before they closed, but we missed the last hayride for the night and the owner then informed me that they take credit cards. This is where I smacked myself upside the head for wasting our afternoon for no reason. 

At this point I was over Saturday. We got home and I started to warm up broccoli quinoa bites for the kids' dinner. This is when the microwave started smoking and gave up on life.  I had to get the kids and the dogs out of the house and open up all the windows to air things out. I have been holding onto our microwave from our last house, and now I know why. I was able to plug it in and still get the kids hot food without leaving the house again. We played in the garage until bath time and thankfully the house had aired out by then. Saturday was a clusterfuck, but we all survived and Sunday was a new day. 

We started the morning with Hilger's round 2. It wasn't nearly as wind as Saturday and Rob and Aunt Kim got to join us.  

The kids couldn't have cared less about the hayride.  They did have fun running around and playing in all the mazes again though. It turns out someone picked up the $20 bill I dropped and turned it into the farm owners.  I was truly amazed.  Sunday was definitely off to a better start than Saturday.  

We went out for Indian buffet after the farm and Rob snapped this adorable picture. These two kill me. They're so sweet!

Successful naps were followed by football and eating our cookie from Hilger's. Check out Brooke's awesome mullet. 

Our team lost, but we got to hang out with our awesome cousins, and I got to feel Baby Blake rolling around in his mama's belly. So amazing! We had wings and fries from our favorite wing joint and finished the night with The Walking Dead.  Another great episode that has me super excited for next week. 

It was a great weekend, even with the craziness of Saturday.  I hope you all had a great weekend too. Hopefully with none of the craziness ours included.  

Friday, October 25, 2013


After our less than successful trip to the pumpkin patch, we were on the look out for good carving pumpkins. Last Monday we went apple picking, and wouldn't you know, the orchard we frequent has pick your own pumpkins. The kids chilled in the wagon while I went out with the vine cutters and picked four nice carving pumpkins with great stems. We will definitely be getting our pumpkins from the orchard again next year. The price was great and I really love their grounds.

Fast forward to yesterday, and we finally got around to cutting these bad boys. We didn't carve pumpkins with the kids last year, so this was their first go round. Little did I know, it was also Rob's first time getting in and doing the carving.  We have always put uncarved pumpkins on our porch in previous years, and he informed me yesterday that his dad always did all the knife work while they were growing up. I gave him a little direction on cutting the top at an angle, and then he went to work. 

We gave the kids each a spoon and let them help us dig out the insides. They were very hesitant to touch the insides, but eventually they put on their brave faces and touched the goo. As a FYI, the temps here have been below freezing at night, so our pumpkins were a bit frozen inside. It made the guts much less slimy. I'll definitely be remembering that for future years.

 Even Tyson wanted to get in and help.

Once were were done with the first two pumpkins, we took a break to clean up a little bit and the kids and I finished off my Caramel Apple Spice. I tried letting them take turns drinking from the cup, but that resulted in tears. Paper straws to the rescue. Enter adorable photo of them sharing. You can still see the tears on Harrison's face.

I knew I wanted to paint a pumpkin with them and had in mind black paint with "Happy Halloween" and then their doodlings around the letters. I should have known better. We wound up painting the entire pumpkin black. I am going to pick up some glow in the dark acrylic paint from Michael's today and paint on our now black pumpkin. I have never used glow in the dark paint before, so I have no idea how this will turn out.  I'm cautiously optimistic.  

Rob's and my carving skills light up for display. I'm sure you can guess which one is his.  He did an awesome job.

I bought one of those pumpkin shaving kits and thought we'd give that a go for our last pumpkin. After breakfast this morning the kids and I got to work. They were much more willing to get in and help out this morning. After we cleaned out the guts, I got to carving while they emptied the junk drawer.

Our bat turned out pretty well, but when I tried lighting it with a regular votive, it barely glowed. I carved out more from the inside, and on the outside without much improvement. I'm going to pick up a larger candle and maybe a battery operated light. If this sucker doesn't glow more, this will be the last year we do pumpkin shaving. Does anyone who's done this before have any advice?

We still have our black pumpkin and these two little guys I spray painted to finish up. I'm hoping to get them all done after work tonight. Even though we have all the pumpkins we need, I'm hoping the weather will be nice enough that we can make it out to another pumpkin patch or two this weekend for a hayride and corn maze. Why can't all of these things be at the same farm?

Less than a week until Halloween and I'm still working on our costumes. I officially gave up on sewing part of the kids costumes. Sewing patterns are like a foreign language to me. Baste this and interface that. Does Ikea make sewing patterns? Those I could probably work with. I just need a clear diagram and numbered steps. 

I have pants ordered that will be here on Tuesday that I will need to bleach and dye. I'm feeling a bit more confident that their costumes will turn out, I've dyed fabric before with good results, but a last minute Target run is still very much a possibility. Is anyone else still putting the finishing touches on theirs, or their kid's costumes?

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Walking Dead Party

I was hoping to get this post up before the second episode aired, but thanks to a two day headache, my blogging aspirations were put on hold. Our premiere party turned out great. There are a few food things that I might avoid if doing it again. The rice crispie treats turned out pink instead of red. Also, the brain mold's details were lost in the cheese balls.  Most importantly, everyone had a good time and we enjoyed delicious TWD inspired food and drinks. Rob's pizza was definitely the highlight of the night, at least for me it was. The hubs makes homemade pizza like nobody's business.
All of or decor supplies were purchased from Oriental Trading Company or Target. The door sign and wooden crosses I made myself. You can see our full menu here.

The first two episodes of the season have been intense! I'm already looking forward to next week. I won't mention any specifics since I don't want to spoil it for anyone who hasn't been able to watch yet. Definitely hurry up and watch this season, NOW. 

Friday, October 18, 2013

5 on Friday

I'm linking up with  AprilChristinaNatasha and Darci for 5 on Friday again this week.  Today I'm going to share a few items I'm really loving right now.  

One • My Chi flatiron. I love my flatiron for my hair, but recently I love it for its use on baby clothes. I learned about this thanks to Buzzfeed.  I hate to iron and my solution to wrinkles is to throw the clothes back in the dryer. Using a flatiron on baby hems, collars, cuffs, and bows is amazing. It's small and perfect for little clothes, plus I don't have to break out the ironing board.

Two • Starbucks Caramel Apple Spice. After hearing about this delicious drink from a few different sources, I figured I'd give it ago.  It's delicious. Like melt in your mouth, I'll have another please, delicious. I may have had 4 so far this week.  It tastes like liquid apple pie. I did try it this morning without whipped cream. Save your calorie cutting for elsewhere. It's definitely better with whipped cream.  My favorite barista, shout out to Ezekiel, said it's really good iced too, but I haven't ventured down that road.

Three • OPI Every Month is Oktoberfest. I may have a slight OPI obsession. I've tried other polishes and I haven't found anything that covers as well. I bought this color at the start of fall and I am obsessed. It is the perfect purplish burgundy with sparkle. I think this may constantly be on my toes for the next 3 months.

Four • American Eagle Love Baseball Shirt. I just wore this shirt for the first time the other day, and I'm in love. It's so soft and adorable. I have the one shown in the picture, but there are some other cute ones if you follow the link. I was this close to buying the pink one with the silver heart. AE has 40% off sales all the time, so watch the sales and you can get it for a steal.  

Toddler Girl's Jill Boot - Silver

Five • Cherokee Jill Toddler Girl's Boots. I picked these up for Brooke last week. I may have squealed when I saw these for the first time. The Target by us didn't have them in her size, or a size up, but thankfully the one across town had them in a size up. I can't wait until she can wear these. Paired with leggings and a dress or tunic, I might die from the cuteness. They're available in stores and online. Now if only they made them in my size.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

17 Months

Wow, 17 months already! This last month has been the most difficult month so far, but also the most fun. Having two toddlers full of personality and spunk is amazing, and draining. Don't get me wrong, I love it, but I definitely find myself getting frustrated more often these days. All of the fun we're having makes up for it. Plus the snuggles, those definitely make up for any frustrations.

H and B have both started giving hugs and kisses when asked. Harrison's kisses are the most amazing open mouth slobber fests.  He comes at you with drool running down his chin and plants his open mouth over your lips. Brooke gives dainty, puckered lip kisses.  So sweet and girly.  They both give big bear hugs and like to snuggle.  Although, H likes to snuggle more often than B. Rob is a big snuggler and I'm not, so it's fitting that he is and she isn't.

B giving H kisses.

They've both been teething pretty much all month. Harrison has one molar that broke the skin this month. I expect his other three anytime. Brooke has been working on her canines, but none have come through yet. We've been using Motrin at night more often this month. It seems like we'll have 2 or 3 days in a row that we need it and then a few days off.

The biggest development in the vocabulary department comes in the form of animal noises. They have started making animal noises when the see an animal, hear us mention an animal or when we are reading books. Ducks, dogs, sheep and elephant noises are the ones we are hearing regularly. We also have a couple new words. Up and sock are two newbies we've started hearing regularly.

They are finally starting to get better about understanding that when I leave or walk out the door, I will be coming back.  Much fewer tears in that department.  They are still wary of strangers or people they don't see often. Poor Eric, my best friend's fiancé, still gets greeted with tears. Boo has decided that when it comes time to lay down for naps or nighttime, I'm the only one that can do it. Not daddy. It has to be mommy. She's developed quite the mommy attachment, not that I mind.

They are still nursing 3 times a day and eating 3 meals and a snack. Brooke went through a really picky phase the first half of the month, but is finally back to eating more than cheese, cereal and fruit. Harrison is a champion eater and willing to try anything. 

There are some foods that it's become obvious one likes and the other doesn't. Harrison loves clementines. He'll eat two of them as a snack and keep asking for more. Brooke won't eat them at all. She puts them in her mouth and then as soon as she bites down she spits it out. Same thing with green beans. Brooke really likes grilled chicken. Harrison doesn't particularly care for it. One night I made grilled chicken and sautéed green beans in soy sauce. Harrison ate all the green beans and none of the chicken. Brooke ate all of the chicken and none of the green beans.

They are both making the transition into the next size up in clothing. They're too tall for 18 month onesies and almost too tall for 12-18 month tops. Their 18 and 12-18 month bottoms are almost too short, but still big in the waist and legs.  Thank goodness for diapers to hold up their pants.  It may be time to invest in some toddler belts. They have long torsos and short legs like me, I'm sorry kids, so they're even wearing some 2T tops just for length. I hope eventually they even out and get their dad's long legs too. They're in a size 6.5 shoe, which seems to be right on target for their age. I'm excited to go in for their check up next month and see where they officially are in the height and weight department.

They are still loving books. I'm pretty sure we read for a good couple hours each day when we have days at home. When we're in the van, they constantly want books to look at. They've stopped putting everything in their mouth as often, it still happens occasionally, so we're started coloring a little more often. We've been taking advantage of the cooler temps and getting outside more. Walks, park trips, playing in the yard. I'm trying to make sure we soak up all of the outdoors before it's too cold. 

Next month they'll be 18 month olds. That's crazy talk! Is it weird that I'm thinking about getting them a 18 month birthday gift, because I totally am? Maybe it should just wait till Christmas.  

Happy 17 months, Harrison and Brooke!