10-24-19 Cake Pop Day!

One day a year.

That’s how often I buy my kids cake pops from Starbucks. (I’m not against my kids having them and if other people choose to buy them for them, I don’t stop them) but Tim and I decided early on that we didn’t want to equate coffee shops with ‘treats’ in the kids’ minds. That way we don’t have to deal with them begging for a pastry every time we walk in the door. To them Starbucks is for adults, except one day a year.

Flu Shot Day.

I’ve made it a tradition that after getting their flu shots, I take the kids to Starbucks and they get to pick out a cake pop. This makes the prospect of getting their shot a little more appealing. (not much, but a little more!)

This morning as we sat at breakfast, I told them that we would be getting cake pops today and I asked them if they knew what that meant. C thought for a moment and then piped up, “Does that mean we are getting our flu shots?” Smart girl. At the promise of the cake pop, no one complained as we made our way to the pediatrician’s office. The kids did great and more than earned their reward. After stopping at the pharmacy to get my own, we drove through Starbucks.

And even though we only live a few minutes away, those pops were gone by the time we pulled into the driveway!

10-23-19 The Photoshoot

One of the great things about where I used to work was that we had a very talented, very awesome in house photographer and he was always up to taking pictures of my kids if I asked. I was going through old pictures this evening and I came across my first photoshoot with C. She couldn’t have been more than a few months old at the time.

As the person typically taking the pictures in our family, there really aren’t many of me with the kids, so I was happy to have stumbled upon these. 🙂

10-22-19 The Cold

The other morning I woke up and the house was cold. We hadn’t switched over to heat yet, and the temperature had dropped dramatically overnight. As I laid in bed under my warm covers, my cold nose peaking above, I thought of our farmhouse.

When C was two and Big E was six months old we moved into a small farmhouse in late October. It didn’t take us long to realize that the house was a beast to keep warm. Our electric bills were through the roof during winter, as we had to rely on baseboard and portable heaters. To top it off, most of the house was set to just a few breakers, so you couldn’t run more than one heater at a time. So, we ran one in the kids’ room and every morning, Tim and I woke up freezing. I’d hurry downstairs to the bathroom and turn on the hot shower to warm up. After my shower, I’d shiver in our basement kitchen with the oven running to warm it up a bit. When I think back to the farmhouse, my first and most powerful memory is of how cold we were all the time!!

My kids still speak of the farmhouse with nostalgic sentimentality, and in their memories, nothing compares with its beauty and space. (It was neither beautiful nor spacious.) But I am pleased their memories there were good ones.

I often wonder who lives there now. How do they manage the cold, or the stinkbug infestations, or the unnatural slope of the master bedroom? I have to say, I’m just glad it isn’t us!

10-21-19 Cooking Marathon

A few weeks a year I get in the mood to cook. It isn’t anything I plan, I just get this overwhelming urge to cook or bake practically every recipe I come across. My cooking marathon will last a few weeks and then I’ll lose interest for months on end.

Well apparently this round started yesterday, so for the next week or so I’ll be spending much more time in the kitchen.

Yesterday it was a new chicken recipe and homemade apple sauce for dinner followed by a caramel apple dessert made with our fresh apples. Today I made pumpkin scones.

It’s unfortunate this desire is only temporary, but at least we will feast like kings for a few weeks. 🙂

11-19-19 Cramming Fun

Have I mentioned that I’ve been editing a lot lately? Well I have. My editing work ebbs and flows, but the past few weeks have been particularly intense. Because of that, I have felt a little distanced from the family, locked away with the computer. It was extra special to get to go to the zoo yesterday and today I wanted to squeeze some more fun in with the kids in case the schedule picks up again.

So today we attended two shopping center trick or treat events and went to an orchard to buy a bushel of apples.

I’ve really enjoyed the extra smiles over the past few days!

10-18-19 The Zoo

We waited until last night to tell the kids that we would be going to the zoo today. And to make it even better, most of their cousins would be there too! The kids got very excited (except Baby E, who was convinced he might get eaten.)

We spent over four hours at the zoo with 15 kids eleven years old and younger. No one got lost and no one got eaten, so I call that a successful outing! We did a lot of walking and we saw a good number of animals. The kids got to see a lion pee and that was definitely a highlight.

The kids were exhausted by the time we got home and bedtime came easily. I took a ton of pictures, but I’m really tired this evening too. Hopefully tomorrow I can post some. 🙂

10-17-19 Green Noah

I spent some time this afternoon looking at Halloween costumes for the kids. C has outgrown most of her dress up clothes. I can always fall back on superheroes for the boys, so they really aren’t a concern.

As I was browsing amazon, I came across a really cute prairie girl outfit and the thought struck me that maybe C would like to dress up as Laura Ingalls from Little House on the Prairie. I did a quick search and found a boys’ outfit too, so if he wanted to be, Big E could be Almonzo. Boom! Perfectly dorky, perfectly splendid homeschool-kid-halloween costumes!

I brought up the images for the kids to see and they were immediately on board.

“But who am I going to be?” asked Baby E. Good question. Most of the characters in the books are girls.

“You could be the dog, Jack!” C answered.

“No.” Baby E replied.

“You could be a horse. There were lots of horses in the books!”

“No,” he responded. “I know!! I want to be Green Noah!!!”

Now, if the dog in the Little House on the Prairie books is an obscure literary reference for a Halloween costume, Green Noah takes the cake. I mentioned recently that we were reading a book called “The Children of Green Knowe.” (spoilers ahead!) In the book, the main character is visiting his great-grandmother who has a rambling English garden filled with bushes trimmed to be different animals. There’s a deer, a peacock, a squirrel, and more. But the most sinister is “Green Noah.” Green Noah was a tree that many years ago had been shaped into the figure of Noah (to guide and watch over the animals) but it was eventually cursed by an angry Gypsy woman, and because of that no one trimmed it any more, and it became overgrown and scary and one day it uproots itself and tries to attack the main character of the story. Thankfully it is struck by lightning and in the end Green Noah ends up as firewood.

So… that’s who Baby E wants to be… Green Noah… an angry, overgrown tree statue that attacks people and gets struck by lightning. This is the costume he picked out…

PS- we haven’t settle on anything definite yet.