Marshmallow season!

Batch 2 of 3 🙂

Jack’s First Piano Recital

Jack has been taking piano lessons since late winter of this year.  He was very excited to take part in their fall recital.  He’s been practicing his piece for weeks.  He usually practices a couple times daily without a reminder; he genuinely enjoys playing piano!  Without further ado, please enjoy “Jingle Bells.”

Wasn’t that great?! He occasionally messes up the last two measures, but performed flawlessly in front of a crowd.  He said he was very nervous, just excited and anxious to perform.  Luckily he was only 4th in a program of 20 kids, so he didn’t have to wait long.

Snazzy outfit, right?  When he signed up for the recital he asked me if he could get a black vest and bowtie to wear.  I got him some nice dress slacks too and made the bowtie for him.

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During the rest of the recital he made a self-portrait.

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Jack and his teacher, Mr. Joshua.

Cat box

We got some large packages. The kids made a cat fortress. Our cat uses it. She’s weird. It’s super cute and I’m thrilled they played together creatively. Sam even spelled “cat box” on his own. (The extra x is to cross out the extra space, not a double x. He explained this to me.). The kids took a lot of pictures with my phone. Here are a few non-blurry ones:

Baking with Jack

Jack and I baked “star bread” this evening. We made the dough from scratch and used brown sugar and cinnamon for the layer filling. Delicious! We ate it with a quick maple icing. The boys were too excited for me to take a “nice” finished photo 🙂

Happy Halloween!

With two young kids, Halloween has shifted from a holiday to be celebrated after dark, to a celebration first thing in the morning!  In my grogginess I served them bagels and banana ghosts (stick mini-chocolate chips in the banana for a face).  Then I hopped off to school 30 minutes early to set up Jack’s class party, since I am acting as the room parent for his class this year.

The kids start the school day with a costume parade while an army of parents clutching coffee thermoses take pictures and grin.  It’s one of my favorite things, to see what kinds of characters are popular and what creative costumes they have each year.  I think this link will work for you to see Ben’s pictures of our kids and some of our favorite costumes.  Here are our boys looking sharp:

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At 9:30 am I hauled all the party supplies home, took off my wig and costume, and sat down for the first time.  On days like this I’m reminded how wonderful it is to be a stay-at-home- mom who can help out with her kids’ parties at school, and also to have both kids in school, so I can have a few hours peace at home alone.

After school we watched the Curious George’s Boo-Fest (a household classic) and Adventures of Ichabod Crane (fast-forwarding through most of it to get to the spooky part).  We had our traditional dinner of mummy hotdogs and jack-o-lantern quesadillas.

Finally, time to trick-or-treat!  Honestly, by this point it, to me it feels like the holiday is already over.  But Ben loves to take the kids out, so I got to chill at home with two bowls, one of candy and one of yarn.

Sam pooped out after about 30 minutes and I retrieved him in the car.  Jack was out at least an hour, maybe 90 minutes.  I think they only came home because his hands were numb.  He counted his haul afterward: 120 pieces of candy.  Geez.  We have candy out of ears, including all the stuff we bought, as we’ve had less than half our usual number of trick-or-treaters.

Jack cried today when Sam’s class won the pumpkin splat contest (class with the most donations gets to have their pumpkins dropped 95 feet from a firetruck, other kids get to throw them off a regular ladder).  Sam cried when Jack gleefully dumped and counted his MUCH larger candy haul.  Emotions are running high and running out today.

The boys are happy bed in the warm jammies, singing the songs from the Nightmare Before Christmas together.  Ben and I are both very tired.  All in all, it was a very good Halloween this year.

Pumpkin night!

Jack is old enough and strong enough now that he carved his pumpkin entirely by himself!  I only helped him to clean out the interior cavity thoroughly.  Sam was disappointed in how difficult it was to use the knife.  But he did design his pumpkin and oversee every detail of my carving his artwork.

Halloween costumes

Double trunk-or-treating this year for us. First we had a scout party, where our Minecraft themed trunk won second place!  Then, tonight was the church party with more early candy.  The kids really enjoy these parties.  It also gives me good motivation to get our costumes done well in advance of the big day itself.

This year Jack wanted to be Spider-Man.  I didn’t even considering making this one myself.  He wanted a real jumpsuit with a mask and gloves and foot coverings too.  He also did not want “muscles” or the Iron Spider version worn in Infinity War, and thus on all the store shelves this season.  I found this great suit on amazon.  The mask is too small, but that was the case with every suit we tried.  It works well enough for pictures.

Sam had a lot of ideas this year.  I starting working on a Godzilla plan, when he switched and locked onto this one: Zombie Chicken Jockey.  I thought he was making it up, but Ben assured me that it’s a Minecraft character.  His took the most work, but I think I nailed it:

Ben and I couldn’t get excited about any couples costume ideas, so we each went with a favorite movie character.  And then no one knew who we were:

It’s super obvious if you know them, and you have no chance of guessing if you don’t.

Ben is Steve Zissou from The Life Aquatic. I’m Ramona Flowers from Scott Pilgrim vs the World.

The handful of people who recognized us knew it instantly and really enjoyed it. Everyone else was clueless.  I like that we’re representing two of our favorite writer/directors, Wes Anderson and Edgar Wright.  Also, I had a surprising number of women tell me they loved my blue hair and I should seriously considering doing it for real. If colored hair wasn’t such a pain I would.  But even Ramona had to re-do it every week and a half -what a chore!

Here’s more pictures from the two parties. Happy Halloween!

Jack’s Haunted House

This came home from school. Apparently Jack still thinks wood is terrifying. I hope you aren’t too scared after reading this!

First Snow

It was only a flurry, but the unmistakable cries of elementary students joyfully pronounced our first snow of the season today.

By tradition, I made leige waffles.  Oooh, so good.

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It’s time

for HALLOWEEN!!!!!!

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