Thursday, October 28, 2010

Trick or Treating Sorority/Frat Style

University Trick or Treating
Last night a friend and I braved the winds and took our kiddos trick or treating on the Fraternity/Sorority row at the university. We had a really great time. We took along a NASA worker, a pirate, baby Tigger, a lamb, and a farm girl.
University Trick or Treating
Peanut was OVER THE MOON excited about going with her buddies! She loved walking the street with them, scoping out the next candy station.
University Trick or Treating
My friend and I giggled at the fact that these teenagers really had no idea how to keep organization with gobs of little children running around on a candy sugar high. There were several times when our kids walked into a mob of college students searching out candy and we had a very difficult time keeping track of our beloved little ones which made our hearts beat a little beat faster.
University Trick or Treating
This little Farm Girl raked in the candy whereas Lamb Chops who was restrained in the stroller didn't. Thankfully Farm Girl is generous and willing to share.
University Trick or Treating
And really...how many farmers do you know who can pull off the look of ladybug boots (on the wrong feet)???
University Trick or Treating

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sisters

They can fight like cats and dogs....
Sisters
They can wallop each other over the head...
Sisters
They can scream, cry, and carry on over a silly toy...
Sisters
But at the end of the day, when it's all said and done and we look back on our day, there is no doubting that they love and adore each other.
Sisters
"Sisters, sisters, there were never such devoted sisters."

Monday, October 18, 2010

Visiting the Pumpkin Farm

Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze
On Saturday we were going to meet Gigi at a festival between our two homesteads but he got hit with the flu so...Plan B! Someone had mentioned a pumpkin patch/corn maze farm an hour south of our place that was really neat. I mapped out the directions on google maps and tried to get us ready and out the door. Do you ever feel like you're just spinning your wheels and getting nowhere? That was how I felt just trying to get going. Things were just not going right but we kept a cheerful spirit and headed out.

Pumpkin fell asleep immediately. Was she getting sick? Should we eat on the road or wait till we get there? Why were all the drive thru places not on our route? Are these directions even right? I kept wondering, "Should we just have stayed home? This is not going very simply." But we kept trudging ahead...not sure if ahead was the right way.

FINALLY....there was the sign pointing us in the right direction to the farm. Thank goodness there was a sign because those google directions were sending me down numbered county roads that didn't seem to exist and we were in the middle of NOWHERE.

We followed the line of cars and the arrowed signs and up over the hill, we saw where it seemed everyone in the local counties was hanging out for the day. This was a much bigger deal than I had thought it to be. I was so glad we kept trudging ahead. We had a ball together, me and my girls. (Daddy was at the big homecoming football game which we didn't think would be much fun for the girls.)
Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze
I have quite a few pictures to share because we just had that much fun and I can't leave any of them out so you'll just have to put up with seeing my beautiful girls.
Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze

Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze

Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze

Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze

Pumpkin Patch and Corn MazePumpkin Patch and Corn MazePumpkin Patch and Corn MazePumpkin Patch and Corn MazePumpkin Patch and Corn Maze
This picture below is a big deal! This is the first time Peanut has ever gone down a tunnel slide. The picture does NO justice to how huge this slide was. When she first saw it, she said, "I don't want to go down it." No biggie, sweetie! After walking around for awhile, she saw it again and said, "I want to do it." After a discussion telling her she would have to do it by herself because I had to stay with Pumpkin and she would have to go up the stairs by herself, she was even more determined. I was amazed at how brave she was. She went down it 2 more times but would have gone more had we the time.
Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze

Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze
We went through our first corn maze but didn't get to really delve in and get truly lost because we really needed to be heading home. The girls don't know that though...they had fun walking around the cornfield stuffing their faces with grape cotton candy. You will notice Pumpkin is in her stroller. I was not about to let her start running wild through a corn field.
Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze
It was a sweet day with sweet memories..the weather wasn't too shabby either!
Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Homecoming Parade

Daddy has been SWAMPED with mid-terms and work so we have been out of the house as much as we can to give him some peace and quiet to work and study in.
Homecoming Parade
Friday night the girls and I went downtown for the university's homecoming parade. We even ran into some friends from church and got to sit with them so the kids all played together. (It feels really good to be running into people around town that I know!)
Homecoming Parade
The parade was so much fun. It was the perfect size. The girls got to see the university marching band and cheerleaders.
Homecoming Parade
They also got a ton of candy (which makes me wonder if we still need to go trick or treating? Kidding!)

We saw a pretty interesting bike. I guess this is what you call "bike pooling."
Homecoming Parade
After the parade we started walking to the car and Peanut asked what the crowd at the end of the street was. I told her it was the pep rally and she said she wanted to see it! Ha! We spent some time watching the cheerleaders and band and listening to people we didn't know talk about the big homecoming game. It was fun to be in the crowd though and feel the excitement not to mention the beautiful weather that evening.
Homecoming Parade
When we got home, Peanut told Daddy, "We went to Pepper Alley but I couldn't see it."

I love these little munchkins and I love making these memories with them out and about in our community! We're squeezing as much out of this fall as we can.

Taking in Fall

We have been so busy doing fun things just because I can't get enough of fall. I LOVE FALL! The colors have been just beautiful. Last Tuesday after one of my mom's groups, the girls and I headed to campus to meet Daddy for lunch at the student union. We have been here over a year and this was the first time we have done this. We ate at the Burger King inside the union which also houses Starbucks, a salon, a bowling alley, a bakery, a few other restaurants, among a bunch of lounges. These are the only things I saw...I know there are more. It is HUGE!
on Campus Lunch with Daddy
The girls had a ball eating at the university and were the only little kids there. Imagine that! This university is quite a sight to behold during the fall months. It is just amazing with the fall colors tucked around the incredible old buildings.

After our lunch we jumped in the van and drove to the zoo. When we got there I realized the closing time had been bumped up an hour for fall which meant we only had an hour to walk around. Oh well! We made the best of it and cruised through seeing almost everything. Peanut FINALLY got to see the lion up walking around. The cheetahs were stalking the window...must have been close to supper time. YIKES!
Cheetah
(If you look closely, you can see how nice and even the back of Peanut's hair is now from her first hair cut.)

First Hair Cut and the Ballet

A few weeks ago Daddy asked Peanut and I to go to the ballet with him. I mentioned to Peanut that I was going to get my hair cut for the occasion and she decided she wanted to get her hair cut also. So the afternoon of the ballet, off we went for our hair cuts. Peanut was very excited!
First Hair Cut
I told her getting your hair cut is so fun because they wash your hair and it is so relaxing.
First Hair Cut
Peanut wanted me to get my hair cut first then her. The girl who was cutting my hair was so excited to give Peanut her first hair cut. She made sure we got a couple of curls that were cut to save, got us an envelope to put them in, and even gave Peanut a certificate for her first hair cut.
First Hair Cut
Now, we didn't get much cut off at all. Her hair was many assorted lengths in the back so the girl just evened it all up and cut off about 3 inches. I had a hard time parting with that much hair off of her sweet head. I was so worried her curls would be cut off. She does still have curls! Whew! And I don't have a picture of what it looks like. Sorry!

But here we are the at the ballet. We had a good time. As you can see, Pumpkin was not with us. We were in agreement that she would not do so well so we got a friend to watch her while we were out. (She figured out how to get out of her crib for the first time while we were gone too. So far she hasn't tried that stunt again. I am hoping it gave her a good scare and cured her for a while.)
Ballet
Peanut's favorite thing about the ballet was "they were dancing on their tippy toes."

Thursday, October 14, 2010

The Walk

We took the girls for a walk after returning home from our pumpkin picking. Here are a few cute pictures from our time out enjoying the beautiful afternoon.
Walk

Walk

Walk

Going to the Orchard

Last week it was stunningly beautiful here. The leaves had turned and the weather was sublime. I decided a great fall activity would be to take the girls to a local orchard and pick apples. I did my research (asking friends on Facebook about good, local orchards), picked one, and away we went with a picnic lunch all packed away. We were so excited. The drive provided us with some wonderful views of the fall foliage.

We found the orchard easily and the girls were brimming with excitement, Pumpkin more because Peanut and I were excited. We walked into the quaint orchard store, found an employee and asked about picking apples. "Oh, I am sorry but there are no apples left on the trees, no more picking." WHAT?????? You have got to be kidding me.

I looked to my little munchkins and said, "We'll just find something else to do. We will still have fun!" We walked around the store and found a bag of Golden Delicious, a jar of apple butter, homemade peanut butter, apple cider, AND my new favorite fall treat, an apple cider slushy!

We made a trip into the local town to scout out a playground and to eat our picnic. After some playtime, we headed out of town the opposite way just to see where we might end up. (I sort of like taking the new way home usually.) We found an ice cream joint and had pumpkin ice cream and cookie monster ice cream.

After heading a ways out of town, there it was....a sign for a pumpkin patch. We couldn't pick apples so we'll pick pumpkins. We followed the little signs, twisting and turning along the hilly back roads with me praying I could find my way back to the main road. I was just to the point of saying in my head, "If we don't find this place in the next 2 miles, we're going back," and there it was...a small family owned pumpkin patch.
Pumpkin Patch
The girls were thrilled to each pick a pumpkin. Pumpkin kept returning to the same tiny, rotten pumpkin determined that this was the one she was taking home.
Pumpkin Patch
We finally deterred her to one that wasn't so "soft." The owners had been watching and giggling over her determination to take that little pumpkin so when we went to pay, they handed both girls two small pumpkins as a gift. We ended our visit with a hayride around the pumpkin patch.
Pumpkin Patch
It wasn't apples, but it was a fun day that gave two little girls some fun memories of being together. It also gave me a very quiet ride back home to just enjoy the beauty of the leaves.
Pumpkin Patch

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Two Years

Last night Daddy and I tried to stay up and watch a movie. We started at 11:30 p.m. so I only made it into the intro practically before I fell asleep. I was in such a deep sleep that Daddy couldn't wake me when he went up to bed. I finally awoke with that "Ugh, I slept on the floor feeling again." I thought it was probably 2 a.m. or so and went to look at the clock on the stove. 4:10 a.m.....Without even having to think about it, I was in her room again, holding her hand, saying goodbye but two years earlier.

4:04 a.m., October 10, 2008 after a long battle (10 years) with Alzheimer's my mom was whisked to her heavenly home where I trust that she was immediately healed. What a joy it had to be for her to talk, not just talk but talk to her Jesus whom she believed in and walk by HIS side, sing, dance, smile. I have not a shadow of doubt that I will see her again someday. She is there waiting with my brother, other family members who have also been called home, and a precious baby that I never was able to hold our meet but she has.

As I looked at the clock, 4:10 a.m I recalled just a year ago being at my dad's house to be with him on the one year anniversary of her death. I awoke around 4:oo a.m. that night also and on my dad's radio Rosanne Cash was being interviewed on NPR for her new cd The List. She sang one of her dad, Johnny Cash's song. Mimi LOVED Johnny Cash! How appropriate.

I just think it is really cool that I have been roused from sleep each year so far right at the time Mimi went Home. God is cool like that. He is in all of the details.

One detail that amazes me and gives me such joy is the smile that Peanut bears. There is hardly a day that goes by that she doesn't flash a smile at me and I am in a split second seeing my mom's smile. It is a certain little grin that she has, her eyes get all squinty and her nose wrinkled and there is my mom looking at me for just a moment. I know I am the only one who sees it, but that's ok, I think it was meant for me. This isn't the exact smile. It comes in flashes and seconds so I haven't been able to catch it on camera, but this is close.
Smile
While we were at Gigi's house last weekend, we went to the cemetery to Mimi's grave. I made a new floral arrangement for her headstone for the fall months. Peanut hugged and kissed Mimi's stone too which I am sure made Mimi smile. The girls ran all over and giggled while we visited...music to Mimi's ears.
Mimi's Grave
Another little detail that is really neat is that Pumpkin in all of her chattering constantly repeats, "Mimi, Mimi, Mimi." She has no idea what she is saying but I hear Mimi's name so often throughout the day from the little girl who was forming in my womb when we said goodbye to Mimi.

His details are meant to comfort and they do. They bring a smile to my face as does the picture of my mom right at eye level by my kitchen sink. I wash dishes, look at her and tell her all the things I want to tell her so many times through out the day.

I miss you, Mom. I know you are in a much better place. Sing me a song today!
Mimi's Grave
Love me tender,
Love me sweet,
Never let me go.
You have made my life complete,
And I love you so.

Love me tender,
Love me true,
All my dreams fulfilled.
For my darlin I love you,
And I always will.

Love me tender,
Love me long,
Take me to your heart.
For it's there that I belong,
And well never part.

Love me tender,
Love me dear,
Tell me you are mine.
Ill be yours through all the years,
Till the end of time.

(when at last my dreams come true
Darling this I know
Happiness will follow you
Everywhere you go).


(words & music by vera matson - elvis presley)
Mom

Friday, October 08, 2010

The Makeover

I would love to say I was going to show you pictures of a makeover that I had. Wouldn't that just be the funnest thing ever? To get whisked away and made over. This make over is a living room. Which really is quite exciting because the transformation is remarkable. This will be boring to most of you but so many have wanted to see pictures so this is for them.

If you remember we went to Gigi's a few weeks ago to help him redo his living room. I had forgotten to take pictures then but got some while I was up this past weekend.

(I had to get the before pics from my picture archives.)

Let's start with the before pictures. The living room had not been changed in years...like this is the way I remember it as a little girl. The paneling is what was hung when my parents moved into the house in in the 60's.
Christmas at Gigi's
I know the carpeting is from before I appeared which really isn't that long ago, right? (HA!) The orange shag is coming back, I guess. We have a huge roll if anyone is interested!
Christmas at Gigi's
Here you can see that there was alot of stuff in the living room. This is what we call a dust trap and we all know how much fun dusting is.
Happy Birthday
So, it was time for an update, don't ya think?

And now the BIG reveal...are you ready? I wish we had a drum roll here because it really does deserve it!
We painted the paneling a light taupe and did all the trim in a cream. Let me just reiterate...TRIM! Gigi trimmed everything! The room was lacking trim before and that alone added so much. And the carpet...WHOA! We also got rid of the lacy curtains and hung new rods with burgundy curtains. It all came together perfectly!
Gigi's
As you can see too, there is alot less stuff in the room too. This was per Gigi's request and I was more than happy to oblige. NO MORE KNICK KNACKS!!!!
Gigi's
I do have to say...go back and look at that picture above. Gigi surprised us on our last trip up with that TV! He went out and got himself a flat screen digital TV! Pumpkin was amazed to see Sid the Science Kid as big as she is.

I had a hard time getting a good picture of this wall. Gigi has several pictures from his Navy days framed and wanted those hung in the living room. So, I made this grouping and remembered the bin with his Navy uniforms in the closet. I rummaged through and found two of his hats from the Navy and hung them along with the pictures. I love how it turned out. Check out that young man in the Navy uniform on the lower right. Pretty handsome, eh?
Gigi's
So there it is! We all love it so much and love to be in this space now. It is inviting and not so dark anymore. What a transformation some paint and carpet can make. But now...some of the other rooms are looking in need of updating too.