Sunday, November 16, 2008

Pumpkin Patch Pictures

You can't really have Halloween without adorable pumpkin patch pictures....  This is- no joke- one of the best parts of Halloween for me.  I mean, come on, how stinkin' cute are these kids?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Halloween '08

Halloween this year was, in a word... survivable!  Let's just say I was a bit of an overachiever that day but all in all we did good.  I learned a few very valuable lessons and hopefully next year will be better.  The first valuable lesson learned is that 2 year olds and scary movies DO NOT mix.  I had been begging to see something at the Fox Theater downtown so when I heard they were playing "Pooh's Heffalump Movie" there I thought I got my wish.  I heard about it last year but wasn't able to go for whatever reason so this year I totally jumped at the chance to take the kids.  Andy was totally sweet and stopped by the theater early to get us tickets.  I got the kids all ready and in their costumes and we headed out.  Little did I know that in fact it wasn't the Pooh movie but instead it was "Monster House" [said in a scary and slightly sarcastic tone].  I had never heard of it before but I figured, "it's just a kids movie, what could it hurt?".  Yeah... let's just say I learned my lesson.  We didn't even get a chance to sit down before the movie got scary.  I had the kids sit down anyway... dumb.  And I kept my eye on Evelyn to see how she would take it.  Minutes later that well known scary music rings up and I put my arm around her to make sure she's alright and she's shaking, not kidding.  Then on the screen out creeps this scary hand shadow and grabs the kid and Evelyn jumped so bad.  I looked down at her and she looked like she was almost in tears.  I asked her if she wanted to stay and watch or go home and she very quietly told me "I wanna go home".  It was so sad.  She totally gets it from me.  I hate scary movies!  Every once in a blue moon (usually Halloween) Andy can talk me into watching one but I almost always regret it for weeks after.  Poor Evelyn, she wouldn't sleep in her bed that night, probably afraid some giant hand would reach up and grab her, and it took several nights and some serious talking to convince her there were no monsters.  Anyway, luckily we were sitting in the far back, close to the door, so 10 minutes into the movie we snuck out and went shopping for Halloween bargains.  Which brings me to my next lesson learned;  Halloween bargains DON'T EXIST.  I was really hoping to get some cute Halloween stuff and at the very least get the kids' Halloween costumes for next year.  Yeah, so after spending hours and dragging the kids into 6 different store I didn't find anything.  Most of the stores didn't have anything and what few did have stuff it was stuff that was still on the shelf for a reason AND usually it was only like 30% off.  RIP OFF!  So anyway, no luck. 
So the kids and I gave up and went to my sisters for some good cousin time.  No complaints here.  My sister is always great company and that day was no exception.  We totally enjoyed being there and that was a huge highlight of the day. 
 The plan next was that Andy was going to get off work and we were going to hit up the pumpkin patch and get some dang cute pictures of the kids.  We were going to do it days before but
let's just say procrastination got the best of us.  Andy got off work later than expected and we planned to meet up at the Banducci Farms Pumpkin Patch and that's when I learned lesson #3;  Don't procrastinate going to the pumpkin patch if you really want to go AND lesson #4;  The pumpkin patch closes early on Halloween.  We arrived at the pumpkin patch 
with 10 minutes to spare.  On the plus side the kids got to pick out their pumpkin and I did ultimately get the adorable pumpkin patch pictures that I seriously could not live without.  After rushing the pumpkins we had at least an hour or so before the ward Halloween party started so we stopped for dinner and playtime and then I learned 
lesson #5;  DO hit up 2 Truck or Treats for more candy and more fun.  We drove across town to our old wards Halloween party and was surprised to find out that my cousin's husband (who's also the ward planner for a different ward) had combined two wards into one so I got to see my awesome cousins and all our old friends.  After making an appearance there and getting the sweet candy hookups we headed back over to our own ward party and got there just in time to talk to a few people and get in on yet another Trunk or Treat.  We had fun!  
All day I practiced with Evelyn getting her to say Trick or Treat and in the car she did great but when it came down to it she refused to say it to any one else.  I think she was still a little stunned by the aforementioned activity but to her credit by the end of the night she showed little to no fear in at least walking up to each trunk, candy is a pretty strong motivator.  The kids were super cute in their borrowed costumes; Evelyn as Tiger and Preston as a monkey, we got tons of candy, and even learned a few lessons on the way.  Let's just be glad we have an entire year until we get to do it all over again.
Upon writing this post I couldn't help but remember and look back at last years Halloween.  I can't believe how much the kids have changed!

Pumpkin Carving

About 2 or 3 weeks before Halloween I bought a pumpkin at Walmart and it just sat around for a while wishing to be carved.  Finally a couple days before Halloween I gave in to it's taunting and together with the kids we made it our project.  Something about 2 kids under 3 and carving knives kind of made me a little nervous but what would Halloween be without carving pumpkins.  I set the kids at the opposite side of the table and they "helped" me by watching.  But first I let them each put their hands in the yucky squishy pumpkin guts and Evelyn pulled out some of the seeds for me.  I did my best job carving our little pumpkin friend and the kids added their special little touch by coloring on him.  I figured things had gone all too well until Preston managed to climb up on the table and pour out all the pumpkin junk.  What's pumpkin carving without a huge mess anyway?


Monday, November 10, 2008

Disney on Ice

Andy and I have decided that as parents we want to expose our kids to as much good stuff as we possibly can so that they can experience and learn as much as they can... (or at least that's what we tell ourselves so we can take them places)... hence the happiest day of Evelyn's little life thus far.  October 3rd, we took them to go see Disney on Ice at the Rabobank Arena.  She was so happy!  She loves anything Princess.  It all started the day I let her pick out her own pair of shoes and it's grown everyday since.  She still asks me every time she wears them "Do you like my princess shoes?".  During the show Evelyn sat on Andy's lap.  She was so grateful that every few minutes she would give her daddy a little peck on the cheek.  Preston loved the show too.  He couldn't stop watching, people would walk in front of us and he would crane his neck to look around them.  It was so cute.  He refused to relax and sit back until the last little bit when he finally fell asleep (I should mention that it was almost an hour after bedtime).  Every day since Evelyn won't stop telling me "Mom, I want to go again to Disneyland!".  To passify her Andy promised her that we would go to the actual Disneyland on my birthday which of course isn't until February.  So now instead she wakes up every morning expecting that this day will be my birthday.  I can't tell you how many times I've had the Happy Birthday song sung to me in the past few weeks.  It's great! 

I'm on a roll- 4 posts in 1 week!  And I have the laptop all day today so stay tuned.  Maybe I'll even get Halloween up today.  BTW, I'm totally down for a family run but try not to make me look too bad when you guys kick my butt.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

I did it!

After 9 weeks of running I finally completed the couch to 5k program.  I think I may have briefly mentioned it in a previous post but for anyone who hasn't heard of it it's a 9 week running program that starts out at a beginner level and works you up to running a 5k.  I personally loved the program and would totally recommend it to anyone interested in running.  When I first started I could barely run any kind of distance at all and now I can run an entire 3 miles non stop.  You might think it's crazy but believe me it actually gives you more energy at the end of the day plus my butt and thighs look GREAT.  If you're interested in it here's the link .  My very last day of the program (October 11th) I routed out a 3 mile run and timed it.  The final result: 35:14.  I know, for all you runners out there this time probably isn't super impressive but for my first 5k I was pretty proud of it.  I've since improved my time.  My best being 32:58, down about 2 minutes from my first run.

Spray Park

Throughout the month of September my sister and I took our kids every week to the local spray park.  It was a huge hit.  The weather was always nice and all the kids, including the two littlest, really enjoyed getting soaked.  One of the days my sisters friend took pictures of the kids.  Take a look here.
Update:  The password is spraypark3.

Venice Beach

Back again! (today only).  Alright, so Andy hasn't been great about leaving his laptop home.  Apparently he "needs" it for work or something.  Anyway, I started writing my posts out on paper first (yeah, people actually use that stuff still, can you believe it?) and then I figured I'd transfer it over to the interwebs when I finally get the chance.

So in chronological order, about a month ago on September 25th we decided we deserved a day out of town and thought we'd hit up the beach while the weather was still decent.  We picked Venice Beach since neither of us had been there in a while.  This was only my second time going and I thought it was great fun.  If you haven't been there before it's totally awesome and definitely an interesting and worthwhile a trip.  

Among the various crazy people the boardwalk's full of colorful
 street vendors, artists, shops, resturaunts and a variety of street performers- Ever met this guy?  Venice legend Harry Perry- guitar playing street musician on roller skates.  I looked him up when we got home and turns out this guy started playing on Venice Beach in 1974.  Honestly I didn't know this guy was such a big deal or I would have tried to get a picture with him.

Venice is also home to the world renowned Muscle Beach where Arnold Schwarzenegger's acting career began after becoming a regular bodybuilder there.  We couldn't pass up the opportunity to stop and impress everyone with our big guns.

After walking up and down the boardwalk we went down to the beach and enjoyed the sun and sand for a bit.  The last time we took Evelyn to the beach was our Mexico trip last summer and back then she was terrified of the water.  This time she did great.  I even  carried her out as far as I could safely go and she was even more excited.  It was Preston's first time at the beach and he was far less excited about the water.  He prefered staying up on the beach but loved playing in the wet sand.