10 January 2016

Halloween 2015

Certainly have missed some milestones in 2015 that needed documenting and in an effort to catch up I am throwing back to Halloween. Life in what we used to think of as a "simple house" continues to get more chaotic as the kids get older and schedules get out of hand. Thus we found ourselves on Friday, October 30th with no costumes. It drives me nuts to ask the kids "what do you want to be for Halloween." They waver from the ridiculous to the unattainable and then change their minds 10 minutes later. I am a BIG fan of how we chose to do it this time around!

After a family trip to the zoo we rolled into a Goodwill store and let them peruse the racks. P-man went directly to the Angry Bird costume that is obviously WAY too small for him. He tried it on right in the aisle and his mind was made up!
The girls pulled out anything and everything that sparkled and we had a few different options for them to try on. New Kid was very pleased with her "circus performer" outfit and there was a similar costume in the circus theme that would have been great for Pickle but it was way too big. C threw on the zebra headband and blue beads to complete her outfit. I believe she wore flip-flops to trick-or-treat. She was happy and that is all that mattered!
The Go-Go dancer dress is a common packaged ensemble that can be found at the big Halloween stores and we found this one still in the plastic bag but missing the boots. The dress fit perfectly and she was sold. I then spent hours going to 5 different stores on Halloween to find the appropriate boots and found some at the last place I tried - a party supply store!
JP threw his costume together after finding his old Christmas pajama shirt in a drawer. One look at the striped shirt and the idea was born. All he needed was a beanie with a ball on top and his outfit would be complete. Luckily our crafty friend Cathy saved the day by cutting a red ball from one her dog's toys and then we pinned it to the top of his white beanie.
I love this picture of all three as Pickle is in pure Go-Go mode! 
We also had a very smiley Scarecrow over for the party. I believe he was supposed to be scary - he carried some sort of weapon, but it is really hard to be scary with that big of a smile!
His brother attended the party as well and it must be documented or I will certainly forget who was wearing this costume in future years. And Pickle's expression is classic!
We also had an Ice Queen in attendance and two Star Wars characters who escaped being photographed. No other adults wore costumes . . . very disappointing. I dressed as a very convincing Witch and also managed to not be photographed. 

04 December 2015

Lego Christmas Village

We set a goal to start building around JP's birthday this year and we had the whole thing set up by December 1st!  
Santa's Workshop

Mail Truck

Post Office

Tree in Village Center
 Now let's get a closer look at the tree . . . and the lady standing on it. She is supposed to be on the ladder putting on the lights but it is hard for all of us to not constantly play.
Tree Delivery
Skating Rink
Toy Store
Santa and Mrs. Claus
 And this guy is by far my favorite!

26 October 2015


Is there anything sweeter than this?

23 October 2015

Friday Night Lights

Tonight Pickle had one of those opportunities that I think she will remember forever. And I know I would have really enjoyed it when I was her age so it was something I did not want to pass up. Pickle participates in the Cheer Club at her elementary school and they were invited to cheer along side the high school cheerleaders at tonight's Homecoming game for the first quarter.

The high school cheerleaders had stopped by Cheer Club practice last week to teach the young girls a few key cheers and Pickle has been practicing non-stop. She was so excited to put her practice in action tonight and although I am biased, I think she nailed it!

This is Lily - her buddy for the night.

The started the game by cheering for the players running on the field.

These girls were so excited to be at the high school and on the field. They were pumped & ready!

Earlier in the day the Cheer Club performed a dance routine at the school assembly and then got to march in the Homecoming Parade. This was her second year to do this!

 Smile on Picklicious!

11 September 2015

Wild & Free

All good things are wild and free. 
- Henry David Thoreau

08 September 2015

Labor Day Camping

Third year in a row camping for Labor Day and the group has grown! Two years ago I believe we had 4 families and this year was 10 (or so). There were 22 kids - not counting the strays from other sites that wandered over - and their corresponding parents. The weekend was filled with food, drink, debauchery, and campfires. There were bike rides (and races), a whiffle ball game, teepee building, forts, wood collecting and chopping, face painting, and games.

 Jeremy led an expedition into the woods to collect wood for the fire as well as for building a teepee. The teepee didn't last long. The male urge to chop and saw wood overtook several of the grown up boys and they had the pile whittled down to fire wood in no time!

It is fun to catch up with families and see the kids grow from year to year. To be honest we didn't see much of the kids as they found some great spaces in the woods to be build forts and there were a few battles between the boys and girls from fort to fort. P-man also started a trend of not wearing a shirt and by the last morning even the little guys had gotten into the spirit.
What? Is there a problem?
The communal living allows for a lot of down time when others are preparing the meals and we really ate some great food all weekend including plenty of snacks and shared cocktails. Activities were also shared including paints that ended up on faces - think war paint for the boys and full on face color for the girls:
Yellow Face

14 August 2015

First days!

  Another summer has come to an end and that means the kids go back to their regular
jobs during the day. Pickle is lucky enough to go to school with a couple of children from her Kindergarten class at the Montessori school. Since first grade the kids come over and join us for the walk to school. It makes good sense because so many parents drive the first day of school that parking is almost all the way to our house and it is a nice tradition to boot. This year there was a new kid as another younger sibling joins the older at Big School.

  For a reason not explained to me, nor important enough for me to question, New Kid's school did not begin until Tuesday. This afforded her an extra day of following me around and delayed my breakfast date with my wife. But Tuesday finally came and New Kid made the jump to Kindergarten. It is ridiculous that the time has flown by so fast! She has made it, or maybe we have, though and now there are some real expectation. They are all her expectations! She expects me to go on all kindergarten field trips, to be included on the chore chart and get an allowance, and to not sit in a booster seat at the dinner table.