Friday, October 29, 2010

Too Much Time on my Hands.....

So, Ian says I have way too much time on my hands. I have been creating and decorating for Halloween and fall since October 1st. My guess is, I am missing my first grade classroom and all the cutesy (dorky) creative stuff that went along with it. I have scoured the internet for the most fun, and manageable ideas out there, and here is what I found and made....

A wreath from an old paperback

Spooky mantle garland

Jack'O Lantern glass candle holders

Lots of vintage Halloween cards

FALL picture frames and a Jack'O Lantern from a book

Decoupaged pumpkins (maybe I should have used fake so they would last till next year, duh)

Scary witch window scene

Every single one if these ideas came from the internet, so I take no creative credit.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Ho Ho Holiday Cards

So, Christmas is creeping up on us and I have begun to think about our cards for this year. Shutterfly has some awesome ones very reasonably priced and I know the quality will be great. I use them for my photo books that all of the grandparents get every year and we are always pleased.

Next weekend Nichol has agreed to tackle the gigantic task of trying to get a family picture for us to use on our card. If she gets a good one this is the card I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to use!

Shutterfly has tons of options here

But, I am realistic and perhaps a a card like this is more within our reach as a family this year. And it is super cute. I may ask Nic to try to get a pic like this anyway!

Check similar ideas out here

Then I saw this one with a family Top Ten list and it includes a few pictures, which would be easier than trying to get one good pic of all of us.

More Christmas stationary cards here

But we usually do a Christmas letter and would the letter and the list be too much? So, this card popped out with a short letter included on the front of the card!

Even more creative cards are here

But, Ian is in charge of the letter, and may feel stifled by having to keep it so short. many cute choices, how will I decide?

Thumb Sucker

Back when Holden was about 8 months old we Ferberized her. She was not sleeping and I was losing my mind. The strategy was to let her cry for increasingly longer periods of time before going in to rescue her. In 1 1/2 days she was sleeping for 12 hours straight, going to bed with no tears, and not using her pacifier. However, she quickly found her thumb and was addicted within 3 days. At the time, we did not care what she was doing as long as she, and we, were sleeping.

Now it is three years later, and that thumb is still her favorite thing in the entire world. I can't get a picture of her without it, when I paint her nails the thumb remains naked because she can't wait for it to dry to suck it again, and her teeth are getting messed up from the constant sucking.

I see the battle looming on the horizon and I am scared. We have to get this under control. Maybe getting her to only suck it at bedtime is a a good first step. Someone else had a special chair, and her son could only suck his thumb when he sat there. Anyway, I have begun looking for ideas other parents used and this Pennsylvania Dutch Fairy (SCARY) Tale is by far my favorite.....

A mom is leaving the house and her son is being left at home on his own. She warns him not to suck his thumb because the local tailor is on the prowl for thumb suckers and when he finds them he chops off their thumbs with his giant scissors. Well, the boy does not heed the heed the warning and sure enough, the tailor discovers his nasty little habit. He sneaks into the house, lops off the boy's thumb, takes it with him as he leaves, and abandons the child thumbless in a pool of his own blood.

I was hysterical when I read this story. I think I need to locate the entire book which is a collection of "childrens stories" which are all equally inappropriate and morbid. Here are a few pages from the thumb sucker story. I may print them in poster size and hang them in Holden's room.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Pumpkin Patch

Rock Creek farms is the place to go if you want a pumpkin. HUNDREDS OF ACRES OF PUMPKINS! I mean fields of orange as far as the eye can see. Holden was trying to crawl out of her seat before the car even stopped moving. Both kids had a a blast searching for the best pumpkins, helping cut them off the vine, and smashing the guts of rotting ones.

The most exciting part was The Tipton family meeting us there to begin our big fall festival weekend.

We did the pumpkin patch

ran through the hay maze

carved the pumpkins...

(in pajamas)

made homemade pizza for lunch...

and had a Halloween party!

Wow! It was a super action packed exciting weekend. The parents even got to go out to dinner and drinks downtown. Big shout out to Jessica who watched all four kids for us!!! It was so nice to have the house full of laughter and friends (and only a little screaming) all weekend.

Nichole is so talented! She is on her way to a thriving photography business and we really luck out, because whenever we see her, she snaps zillions of beautiful shots. I have not taken a good pic of Holden in about 2 years and Nichole took some awesome ones in a few minutes. If you live in Colorado Springs or the Denver area and are interested in some fabulous photos at reasonable prices look her up! She does engagement, wedding, family, and kid shoots!
Nichole Tipton Photography on Facebook

And this is her family blog which shows also shows off her amazing work.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Vaca Wrapup

Now that we have been home for a week, I figured it was time to post the rest of our pictures.

Long story short, we ended up in Vegas. Damn, no matter how many times I declare, "I will NEVER go to Vegas again!" I somehow keep ending up there. On Thursday morning we decided it would be a grand idea to make the three hour trip to Vegas with Ian and my dad. It was hot and sunny, a welcome reprieve from the cold rain in Duck Creek Village. However, we had the dog, so we needed a hotel that took big dogs...Motel 6 here we come. To the smallest room in the world. At least it was redecorated and clean.

We got to have dinner at Mandalay Bay with dad and then head to the Shark Reef Aquarium which was really spectacular. The kids went nuts for it.

However, I was one of those people I usually glare at and whisper under my breath about how children do NOT belong in casinos or Vegas at all for that matter. But there we were, two screaming and unruly kids, a a big stroller, and a diaper bag on the casino floor. It was so embarrassing! Then back to Motel 6 where Ev slept in the bathroom, in his Pack-N-Play, it was the only place it fit! Next morning was a breakfast with dad and then by lunchtime Ian was finished with his presentation and we were heading back to Utah.

We went straight to Zion and basked in a beautiful afternoon along the Virgin River. Hiking was pretty much out of the question since these two are obsessed with throwing rocks into water. So, that's what we did. Just enjoyed the river and the rocks.

Oh, and peed in the trees!

We grabbed a pizza from the Pizza and Noodle Company and headed next door to the elementary school playground for a picnic.

I can't think of a better playground view than this one.

We had some fun running, tackling, and wrestling. Trying to get out their energy before hopping back in the car!

Saturday was our last day of vacation and we stayed close to the cabin. Holden had a pretty bad cold and Ev gave her a great wake up call.

We went to Navajo Lake for more rock throwing

I love vacation Ian!!!!!

and Scoutie had a fun swim too!

The ride home was another pleasant surprise. This trip really threw our car hating kids into the fire. Total, over the course of one week, they spent about 40 hours in the car. We really broke them in! It was such a relaxing week. Just getting to spend time together was so nice. Having my dad along to get some quality time with the kids (and us) was wonderful.

Quotes of the Day

" Our lives...need the relief of where the pine flourishes and the jay still screams."
-Henry David Thoreau

"As long as I live, I’ll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I’ll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm and the avalanche. I’ll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near to the heart of the world as I can.

-John Muir

"We haven't just inherited the earth from our forefathers, our society continues to borrow its endowments from our children."
--Lois James

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Rain, Rain Go Away

Torrential downpores, thunderstorms, and tornado watches. That about sums up the weather since we arrived here on Sunday evening. It has been NONSTOP rain and sleet for 4 straight days. My ideal vacation did not include exploring Zion on the shuttle bus

and viewing (or not viewing as the case may be) the Bryce Amphitheater through an opaque fog.

Let's start at the beginning. 6:21 am on Sunday.

Our drive was perfect. Seriously. No crying or complaining, no potty or diaper accidents, and no vomiting! A complete success. Holden peed on the side of a highway for the first time and Ev had his diaper changed on the desert floor.

It was a total of 11 hours door to door, which isn't bad when you factor in our stop in Grand Junction to fix a flat tire!

This cabin is super cute with a big deck and table, which we have yet to use and nice swing where I could (possibly, if it stopped raining) sit and watch Scout chase wild turkeys and the kids build mud castles.

We thought the tv and wifi would be a bad thing, but since we don't have a covered canoe, they are both coming in handy.

We headed over to Zion on Monday and the rain did relent for brief periods and we got out of the car for a little while and the kids rock climbed,

threw rocks in the river,

and splashed in many mud puddles.

Tuesday, when we awoke to more rain, we decided to head over to Cedar City and look for some indoor fun for the kids. We first hit the Frontier Museum. It was fun to see the old wagons, farming equipment, and authentic cabins. The kids found a stray cat to chase, which provided them 30 minutes of entertainment while we read all of the information and explored the history of southwestern Utah.

Then off to Taco Time and an indoor play area for a lunch break. The adults were ready to go home, but Holden heard rumors of a jump castle and we just had to go. So off to Bounce insanity we went. It really was so much fun for the kids. They had never been to an ondoor bounce play place and they got out alot of energy. Ev even took a hit to the head from a boxing glove bigger than him, and he got right back up!

We woke up on Wednesday and it was actually raining more. We went to Bryce Canyon anyway, and spent A LOT of time in the visitor center and Ruby's Inn where we had a big cowboy lunch. Finally we gave up and drove in to Sunrise Point so Ian and my dad could run out in the rain for a brief glimpse of the canyon, and nothing. They couldn't see 5 feet in front of them. UGH

Here we ar back at the cabin, watching the Phillies game, sipping tea, and trying to entertain this kids, who are dying for some action.

Tomorrow my dad and Ian head out to Vegas, Ian has work for a couple of days and my dad is going to enjoy all the Blackjack he can handle. I will stay here with the munchkins and pray for some clear weather. I heard a rumor that it may only be cloudy at Zion on friady, but I am afraid to get my hopes up. Ian will be back here Friday night and we are here till Sunday.

So three full days left and we are singing, "Here Comes the Sun" by the Beatles and all have our fingers crossed for an improvement!

Quote of the Day

"You've got to be #*&#@* kidding me! I can't see rock number 1!"

-Dennis Diehl, after hiking through the sleet and fog to the edge of Bryce Canyon


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